List of Reflexive Songs on Wikipedia?
May 10, 2008 11:53 AM   Subscribe

There used to be a list on Wikipedia comprised of songs that reference themselves (e.g. Bowie's "Five Years": I think I saw you in an ice-cream parlour, drinking milk shakes cold and long; Smiling and waving and looking so fine, dont think you knew you were in this song) The Wikipedian's seemed to have cracked down on lists like this. Anyone know where can I find a copy of it?
posted by paulrockNJ to Media & Arts (12 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I found this:,,1949492,00.html.

And I rather enjoyed reading this, which is really more of language thing, but talks about a few self-referential songs.
posted by chudmonkey at 12:03 PM on May 10, 2008 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I couldn't find any record of a "Reflexive songs" article, but they did used to have one called "List of Self-Referential Songs". has a copy from February 2006.
posted by Rhaomi at 12:08 PM on May 10, 2008

Yeah, for posterity this is the deleted Wikipedia article.

I think it's pretty insane that that gets deleted but that "comparison of" pages like this one for media players stays. Isn't that what CNET is for?
posted by Deathalicious at 12:10 PM on May 10, 2008

Conspicuously absent is Bobby Jean, by Springsteen.

Maybe youll be out there on that road somewhere
In some bus or train traveling along
In some motel room there'll be a radio playing
And youll hear me sing this song
Well if you do youll know I'm thinking of you and all the miles in between
And I'm just calling one last time not to change your mind
But just to say I miss you baby, good luck, goodbye, Bobby Jean

posted by wemayfreeze at 1:15 PM on May 10, 2008

They also missed We'll Meet Again.

"They'll be happy to know
that when you saw me go
I was singing this song"
posted by bink at 5:09 AM on May 11, 2008

("Your Song" by Bernie Taupin/Elton John...)
posted by Dizzy at 7:15 AM on May 11, 2008

R. Kelly's "Ignition (Remix)" would seem to qualify as well, but a closer reading of the lyrics reveals a much more mindblowing scenario:

Runnin' her hands through my 'fro
Bouncin' on twenty fo's
While they say on the radio:

'It's the remix to ignition
Hot and fresh out the kitchen...'

This song--the one we're actually listening to--isn't "Ignition (Remix)"'s a song ABOUT "Ignition (Remix)"!

After a show and an after-party, Kelly and his crew are heading back to the hotel, still drinking and having a good time. But suddenly, the perfect song comes on the radio, one that exquisitely matches the mood of the late night: the remix to "Ignition."

But as for the actual remix itself, we never actually hear it, just Kelly telling us about how good it was to hear it in his jeep that one night.

(I don't mean this to come across as "Ha ha I can overthink a plate of beans" or "LOLKELLY": I genuinely think this is a genius--and certainly intentional--aspect of probably the greatest song this decade has seen.)
posted by Ian A.T. at 7:16 AM on May 11, 2008 [3 favorites]

- You're so Vain, (you probably think this song is about you.)
- I'm Too Sexy (for this song)
posted by thebrokenmuse at 1:23 PM on May 11, 2008

Here's Last Plane to Jakarta's (a.k.a. John Darnielle a.k.a. The Mountain Goats) 100 Reasons Why "Ignition - Remix" Is So Damned Great, which also mentions the self-referentiality.
posted by Kattullus at 1:46 PM on May 11, 2008 [2 favorites]

I did not see Andre 3000's verse on the Devin the Dude song "What a Job," on that list, but that would probably fit in as well.
posted by 8 Bit at 6:12 PM on May 11, 2008

The Streets' Stay Positive kinda does this:

One last thing before you go though
When you feel better tommorow you'll be a hero
But never forget today. you could be back here
Things can stray
What if you see me in that window?
You won't help me I know.
That's cool, just keep walking where you go.
Carry on through the estate, stare at the geezers so they know you aint lightweight
And go see your mates
And when they don't look happy
Play them this tape

Although 'tape' is ambiguous. Could be the album, but in the context of the tune definitely seems to be referring to this individual song.
posted by Cantdosleepy at 4:58 AM on May 12, 2008

For those interested, here is the archive of the deletion discussion for that list.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 9:47 AM on May 12, 2008

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