So, MJ's death had me thinking about pop music in general. Also, I have been playing Ricky Nelson's "Garden Party" over and over on my Ipod, and I think mostly for the line "If memories were all I sang, I'd rather drive a truck." I just love that line.
Later, I started to think of just PERFECT pop music lines. Some of them off the top of my head:
"I once had a girl, or should I say, she once had me." - Beatles
"My smile is my make up, I wear, since my break up with you" - Smoky Robinson and Miracles
"You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows" - Bob Dylan
"The underground is over-crowded" - Archers of Loaf
"I can't stand it, I know you planned it, I'ma set it straight, this 'Watergate'." - Beastie Boys
"Birthdays were the worst dayz, now we drink champagne when we're thirsty." - Notorious B.I.G.
"Take a sad song and make it better." - Beatles
"Los Angeles give me Norfolk Virginia, Tidewater four ten O nine. Tell the folks back home this is the promised land callin', And the poor boy's on the line." - Chuck Berry
"I know my kisses are not his; I'm not gonna tell you why that is!" - Bob Dylan
"The highways jammed with broken heroes on a last chance power drive" - Bruce Springsteen
And, I think, the best ever pop lyric is:
"Is this a lasting treasure, or just a moment's pleasure? Can I believe the magic of your sighs?
Will you still love me tomorrow?" Gerry Goffin and Carol King (made famous by the Shirelles)
This song/lyric survives pretty mediocre performances by Shirelles singer Shirley Owens and the author itself Carol King (with even worse back-up by James Taylor). (Of course, the Shirelles version is the pinnacle of Phil Spector's "wall of sound" and a great record, and Carol King was a great song-writer but a passable vocalist at best--e.g. compare her version of "Natural Woman" to Aretha Franklin's.) Side note, Dusty Springfield's version of this song is killer.
Ok, so what are some of your favorite pop song lines?