Lampshade Hanging/Music

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.

Lampshades hung in music.

  • The Cooper Temple Clause song "Who Needs Enemies" contains the lines "a killer key change, is all you'll ever need" to instigate the key change for the chorus.
  • The Prince song "1999" features the lyrics "I was dreamin' when I wrote this, forgive me if it goes astray" and "I was dreamin' when I wrote this, so sue me if I go 2 fast".
  • The Swedish song "Värsta schlagern" ("Such a Schlager"), sung by Markoolio and Linda Bengtzing, lampshades a lot of the tropes and clichés appearing in the Eurovision Song Contest. The song itself is written and orchestrated like a typical "schlager", only the lyrics lampshade. Examples include a bridge going (my translation from the Swedish): "What they reward with twelve points, is a sumptuous chorus", part of the chorus going: "There are stars and they're burning, there's the world and it's disappearing, and the title should hit you like a punch in the stomach, it's such a schlager" and one memorable part going: "If you don't want to ruin your chances of winning, you can steal something from ABBA and see the risk disappear."
  • "Hallelujah" by Leonard Cohen contains the line, "It goes like this: the fourth, the fifth, the minor fall, the major lift", referring to the sequence of chords played during that line.
  • The Cat Empire song "One Four Five" contains a chorus which simply reapeats the phrase "One, four, five." over and over. When each word is sung, the music itself plays that chord progression associated with the song AKA a I-IV-V chord progression.
  • Britney Spears' "Womanizer" has a conspicuous shot of a Nokia cell phone near the start. One of the appointments just visible in the frame is about a Product Placement meeting.
    • The start of the video for If U Seek Amy spells out the 'hidden' message in the lyrics very blatantly before the song begins.
  • Da Vinci's Notebook's "Title of the Song" is all about this.
  • In Tower of Power's "Diggin' on James Brown", one of the lyrics goes, "Take it to the BRIDGE..." and upon singing "bridge" the band starts playing the bridge.
    • Led Zeppelin includes a similar nod to James Brown in "The Crunge". Robert Plant unsuccessfully attempts to get the band to go to the bridge and says "Has anyone seen the bridge? Where's that confounded bridge?"
  • Ryan Adams' "Halloweenhead", right before the guitar solo.
  • Bowling for Soup does this all the time. For instance, towards the end of No Hablos Inglas, Jaret asks "Do you like my band? (beat) Wait don't answer that."
  • The entire text of "The Song That Goes Like This" from Spamalot is a blatant lampshading.
  • The song "Must Have Done Something Right" by Relient K lampshades how cliched it is by chronicling the singer's attempts not to be cliched.
  • The Beatles with "Only a Northern Song":

"If you're listening to this song
You may think the chords are going wrong
But they're not
He just wrote it like that
When you're listening late at night
You may think the bands are not quite right
But they are
They just play it like that"

  • The song "School's Out" by Alice Cooper lampshades how much he (and presumably the band) wanted to stick with the wordplay of the term 'principals' despite it being a hard word to match.

Well we got no class
And we got no principles
And we got no innocence
We can't even think of a word that rhymes"

    • "Circus Fish" by Vermillion Lies does this as well:

"You are my little garden trowel
I don't know what to rhyme with trowel"

  • In Luke Ski's Springsteen parody "Born To Lose", the music peters out shortly before the final verse, and Luke petulantly whines: "C'mon, guys, at least let's finish the song..."
  • In "Hook", Blues Traveler deconstructs the pop song by explaining the process in the lyrics.

Because the hook brings you back
I ain't tellin' you no lie
The hook brings you back
On that you can rely
There is something amiss
I am being insincere
In fact I don't mean any of this
Still my confession draws you near
To confuse the issue I refer
To familiar heroes from long ago
No matter how much Peter loved her
What made the Pan refuse to grow?
Was that the hook brings you back.

  • In "Gold Soundz" by Pavement, the lyrics 'And they're coming to the chorus now' come just before the chorus.
  • Lou Reed's "Walk on the Wild Side" has the lyric 'And the coloured girls go, doo dodoo,' etc. right before they do in the song.
  • Bright Eyes' song "False Advertising" features the lyrics 'Now all anyone's listening for are the mistakes' right before a member of the band apologises for a mistake she's made.
  • In the rather awkwardly titled Wire song "Map Ref. 41°N 93°W", lead singer Colin Newman actually sings the the word 'chorus' before the band dives into the first one. This maybe to flag up the unusually lengthy sequence of verses that appear before this, and is a good example of their experimentation with song structures.
  • The Naked And Famous song called "Girls Like You". The chorus and hook being "Don't you know people write songs about girls like you?" (this being one of them)
  • Lady Gaga's statement to her fans during her show "SURPRISE!! A pop show, and the bitch can SIIIING!!" Shouted during one of her shows. Also, due to context, heavily implied to be a no-so-subtle Take That at her contemporaries.
  • Britney Spears
    • "Womanizer" has a conspicuous shot of a Nokia cell phone near the start. One of the appointments just visible in the frame is about a product placement meeting.
    • The start of the video for "If U Seek Amy" spells out the "hidden" message in the lyrics very blatantly before the song begins.
    • "Piece Of Me" is one long lamp shade hanging regarding her relationship with the press.
    • In the video for "Hold It Against Me" Britney pokes fun at a rumor from early in her career that she was an alien by crash landing to Earth as a pop star who shortly after takes the world by storm at the beginning of the video.
    • The Soprano and Gravel elements "Big Fat Bass (Feat." is lampshaded with the lyric: "I can be the treble, you can be the bass".
    • Overprotected (Darkchild Remix) video has a woman obviously from a radio news channel saying how "Britney shows up at awards show half naked again".