Before reading this article, please watch this short video:
Not a bad song, huh? Kind a jaunty.
Now, maybe you didn’t notice, but the entire chorus of that song was a set of cliches. Yeah. THE ENTIRE CHORUS.
But, I bet you didn’t notice too much did you? You were snapping your fingers, tapping your toe, waving your glowstick around.
The four cliche’s were:
There ain’t no rest for the wicked. (a play on no rest for the weary)
Money don’t grow on trees.
I got bills to pay, I got mouth to feed. (How many times have we heard that one?)
There ain’t nothing in this world for free.
So I ilstened to this song about 50 times before it hit me that the chorus was just a bunch of cliches. The dudes didn’t even really write the chorus, they just copied a bunch of crap from other people…but it works.
You know how much I think story telling and song writing are closely related. A song must tell a good story (whether through its words or music).
To me this song is pretty cool. Prolly one of my favorites when it first came out, and I still like it to this day.
But if Cage the Elephant was to listen to the naysayers, they’d never have even tried to fill a song with cliches. And it wouldn’t have been so good.
I think this goes to show us, write what you want to write. Let the others go hang. Who knows, you might write a cliche’, but it might have a damn good beat.