It’s no secret that certain songs have a lot more to them than meets the eye. Some have hidden meanings, while others are so intensely personal to the songwriter that the typical listener could never hope to comprehend them. However, there are also entirely misunderstood songs out there; songs whose words have been so misinterpreted by individuals over the years that the original idea has been completely lost. Whether it’s due to urban mythology, deceptively lovely chords that avoid menacing lyrics, or simple misinterpretation, when the public gets their hands on a song, it might transform into something altogether different.
‘The One I Love’ – R.E.M.
Here’s another song that was never meant to be a love song. According to lead singer Michael Stipe, the band almost didn’t record the song because it was “too brutal,… really violent and awful.” Sure, the title is deceptive, but the lyrics aren’t. Calling your sweetheart “a simple prop to occupy my time” is not a romantic overture.