Little Known Song Titles That Answer Questions Posed In Better-Known Songs

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I have a short piece over at McSweeney's today.


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Nik said:

AAAhhh! Can't work out all the questions they were answering. Can we get some sort of list before I go mad?

Jacob said:

That would take all the fun out of it. Which ones have you got so far?

blutarski said:

i've got all but '58 miles' and 'the latter...'. help me clever wan kenobi yr my only hope.

Jacob said:

Blutarski, here's some hints. If you're really stuck, I'll tell you the answers.

"58 miles" is probably easier if you ignore the metric translation.

"The Latter..." could actually be any one of several dozen songs; the one I happened to have in mind originally is by They Might Be Giants.

Toby said:

Would that mean the answer is they liked it better that way?

Jacob said:

Toby, now you have me stumped. What song are you referring to?

Toby said:

"Istanbul". But now that I go over the lyrics in detail, I see that the latter reason given to the question "Why did Constantinople get the works?" is actually "It's nobody's business but the Turks". The former reason given is that they liked it better that way.

Jacob said:

Hmm... I'm not sure whether or not to count that as an acceptable response. Note that my answer are responses only to the question part of a song. So, if the lyrics were, "Did people just like it better that way, or is it nobody's business but the Turks?" then it would work. As it is, it doesn't quite work, although I can see where you're coming from.

In any case, it's not the song I had in mind...

Craig Mazin said:

Huh. I thought the "latter" one was "Should I Stay Or Should I Go?"

Sorry for the late comment. :)

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This page contains a single entry by Jacob published on February 16, 2005 10:35 AM.

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