Sunday, February 20, 2011

nurghophonic distress #4: "Wannabe" by Spice Girls

Written By: Matt Rowe, Richard Stannard, and the Spice Girls
Released: 1996
Album: Spice
Single?: International chart-topping, record breaking, award winning smash hit.

"Chicks with a list of demands" is a subgenre of pop music that seems to inspire some men to domestic violence. I'm much more forgiving of the indulgence, especially when the songwriting is multifaceted. For instance, Sheryl Crow's "Strong Enough" is really a laundry list of the woman's personality defects and a sincere hope someone will love her through her bullshit. Alanis Morissette's "21 Things I Want in a Lover" is more of a grocery list of desirable attributes, but that doesn't feel so specific that a a professional matchmaker or Mister Sandman will have to bring a dream. TLC's "No Scrubs" may be the most famous example, and is it really so unreasonable to expect a fellow to bring something more to the table than noise when pushing up on full-blown hotties.

"Wannabe" isn't a terrible song because of the nature of the demands. The trouble starts when they tell you what they want... really, really want, about eighty-seven fucking times. I understand the act of talking things out is cathartic to women, no matter how very, very, very trivial the point may be, but men lose a little more of their spirit with each vague request. Just tell me one time what you really, really want, so I can decide whether to tuck it or book it, you indecisive, nagging cunts.

Next I must question the double standards. "If you want my future, forget my past?" Well, I kind of need to know those test results from the free clinic, and that indictment for identity theft makes me uncomfortable, frankly. I'm also wondering when you're going to stop passive-aggressively "teasing" me about my friendship with that one ex of mine. "Get your act together, we can be just fine?" You're the one who demands I "get with your friends," like you can have a relationship independent of some catty, bitter hive mind that never lets up with "what you really, really want," y'know? Also, excuse me, but can you get your fucking song together? I count two versus, one of which is sung by Eliza Doolittle, and a bridge consisting on an onomatopoeia. You can't just sing the same corny, sappy, sing-songy chorus four times and recite the same line five times for an alternating chorus that impacts like a wisdom tooth. That's actually the very worst thing: the fact that I will have "Wannabe" stuck in my head for no less than two hours after each exposure due solely to being beaten into submission by the sheer repetition.



Lyrics:
Yo, I'll tell you what I want, what I really really want,
So tell me what you want, what you really really want,
I'll tell you what I want, what I really really want,
So tell me what you want, what you really really want,
I wanna ha, I wanna ha, I wanna ha, I wanna ha, I wanna really
really really wanna zigazag .

If you want my future forget my past,
If you wanna get with me better make it fast,
Now don't go wasting my precious time,
Get your act together we can be just fine.

I'll tell you what I want, what I really really want,
So tell me what you want, what you really really want,
I wanna, I wanna, I wanna, I wanna, I wanna really
really really wanna zigazig ah.

If you wanna be my lover, you gotta get with my friends, (gotta get with my friends!)
Make it last forever friendship never ends,
If you wanna be my lover, you have got to give,
Taking is too easy, but that's the way it is.

What do you think about that, now you know how I feel
Say you could handle my love, are you for real
I won't be hasted, give you a try
If you really bug me, then I say goodbye

Yo I'll tell you what I want, what I really really want,
So tell me what you want, what you really really want,
I wanna, I wanna, I wanna I wanna, I wanna really
really really wanna zigazag.

If you wanna be my lover, you gotta get with my friends,(gotta get with my friends!)
Make it last forever friendship never ends,
If you wanna be my lover, you have got to give, (You've got to give)
Taking is too easy, but that's the way it is.



If you wanna be my lover, you gotta get with my friends,(gotta get with my friends)
Make it last forever friendship never ends,
If you wanna be my lover, you have got to give,(You've got to give)
Taking is too easy, but that's the way it is.

If you wanna be my lover, you gotta, you gotta, you
gotta,
you gotta, you gotta
Slam your body down and wind it all around?
Slam your body down and wind it all around.(ha ha ha ha)
Slam your body down and wind it all around.
Slam your body down and zigazig

If you wanna be my lover!

2 comments:

mathematicscore said...

I was in 8th grade when this came out, and all my female friends, not the least of which my sister, were all about this. I was too. I still kind of am.

You make some great points, but I tend to trump my more analytical side similarly (though less bitterly ;) ) to how you ended... the fact that it's so catchy, so fun, and so in line with what I like in women, makes up for much of its sheer inanity.

Diabolu said...

Well, to clarify, I don't throw down a blanket condemnation of the Spice Girls, just that insidious tune. For a shake and bake girl group, their albums are surprisingly decent. I especially like "Say You'll Be There," both the song and video.

...nurghophiles...

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