“We aint getting no younger, so we might as well do it. Been feeling you all the while girl, I must confess. Let’s get married. Baby let’s get married.” ~ Let’s Get Married by Jagged Edge
So romantical, right? (And yes, I said romantical.) Except it’s not… like at all, but despite the fact that Jagged Edge clearly told everyone the only reason they were getting married was because they were starting to age and that the biological clock does start ticking for men too, I know so many women who would claim this mess as their song! Not as in this is my jam – because, admittedly the song is catchy and I had a tendency to Bankhead Bounce when it came on too. No, no – as in this song is the song that represents the relationship between me and my boo.
But this wasn’t the only song that made me scratch my head when folks would use it to define things with their significant other. I know I’m not the only one who would cringe when folks would call into the radio station and request (of all things) Donnell Jones’ Where I Wanna Be in dedication of their boo-thang. Or who would scream out in frustration when she would hear people say they planned on using any SWV song ever in their wedding? Really?? Have we listened to the lyrics in these songs, people?
I said I left my baby girl a message Sayin’ I won’t be coming home
I’d rather be alone
She doesn’t fully understand me
That I’d rather leave than to cheat
~Where I Wanna Be by Donnell Jones
And then, of course, there’s this:
Boy, there you go
You’re telling me that you love me
But boy you know
That you belong to another girl who loves you
You are so fine, (so fine, so fine)
You blow my mind
(Things you do) with the things you do to me
(She sees) She’s not blind, she’s not blind
Things you do for me, but I know
~ I’m So into You by SWV
I mean, really people? We don’t see the problems with these songs?
Lest we get comfortable and start thinking all these songs come from the 90s and early 2000s, I present to you exhibit A: Ordinary People by John Legend, exhibit B: Pretty Wings by Maxwell, and Exhibit C: Love by Keyshia Cole. (And yes, I do know people who have commented that these particular songs are for them and their boonapolis.) Listen, I like Keyshia’s song too¹, but I also know it’s about a woman who is in love but doesn’t want to be, because the man isn’t hers. Unless that’s your story – maaaaaybe you should think before claiming it on the spoogie playlist.
Anyway, all that to say – it’s February now and I know a lot of folks are going to call themselves trying to make mixtapes or dedicate songs to their lovers. And if you decide to do such a thing, that’s great! Just please listen to the lyrics first, mmkay? It can be a pretty bad look if you don’t.
Are there any songs you guys considered love songs before you realized you were utterly and completely wrong? Do tell!
1 Actually, I love all of the songs listed here. Just not as a reflection of my relationship. No sir, and no ma’am.