While playing an online game similar to Danger, I was intrigued by one of the categories. It was titled “Seven Letters, One Syllable,” a category of words that an English teacher like me should have excelled at.
Unfortunately, I managed to answer only three of the six questions, although all the words were familiar to me. Two of the ones I answered correctly were “stretch” and “straight,” both of which were accompanied by relatively easy clues.
That category is limited to just a couple dozen words, not counting regular verbs that simply add -ed to form the past tense. I never realized how rare it is for a one-syllable word to have up to seven letters.
That realization, for some reason, brought to mind song titles that contain seven words. This category is also quite rare, as most of the melodies have only two or three words in their titles. Billy Joel actually hit number one with a seven word title, “It’s still a rock and roll to me” from his glass houses album.
Here is a list of fifteen other titles that actually contain seven words.
“You Gotta Hide Your Love” by The Beatles
John Lennon’s acoustic melody endures as one of the highlights of the Aid! movie and soundtrack.
“Don’t expect me to be your friend” by Lobo
Among the folk singer’s biggest hits, including “Me and You and Dog Named Boo” and “I’d Love You to Want Me,” this heartthrob resonates as his finest hour.
“Is she really dating him?” by Joe Jackson
British new wave burst onto the scene in the late 1970s with this smash hit by sharp look!, drawing comparisons to fellow Brit Elvis Costello.
“You Didn’t Have to Be So Nice” from Lovin’ Spoonful
His late ’60s folk rock group John Anderson had plenty of hits, but this love tune was by far the longest title in his discography.
“Waiting for the End of the World” by Elvis Costello
At a time when Joe Jackson was questioning women’s taste in men, his British colleague Declan McManus was using this tune to close my aim is true, One of the best albums in rock history.
“The People Who Smiled Themselves To Death” by Housemartins
These contemporaries of The Smiths and Aztec Camera released just two albums, and this title track is a delightful sample of the excellent sound they managed to create.
“Sex, Drugs and Rock and Roll” by Ian Drury and the Blockheads
Nearly half the words consist of the most common conjunction, but all four nouns exude the vibrancy of late-’70s British New Wave.
“White Boots Marching on a Yellow Land” by Phil Ochs
The popular legend’s objection to the Vietnam War continued throughout the sixties, but none of the protest songs were as brazen as this long title tune.
“The Town That Lost Its Beat Supply” by Minus Five
One of the best albums released in the first decade of this century was called Down with Wilco, which featured Jeff Tweedy himself on this track and others.
“When you dance, I can really love” by Neil Young
This tune was the perfect way to close after the gold rushthe album which featured the classic title track along with “Tell Me Why” and “Southern Man”.
“I’m trying to break your heart” by Wilco
Jeff Tweedy reached a creative peak Al with tunes like this and others by yankee hotel foxtrot.
“Lily, Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts” by Bob Dylan
The long title sits the eleven-minute story about murder and betrayal, two themes that permeate the iconic blood on the tracks album.
“I Saw a Stranger With Your Hair” by John Gorka
The pioneer of late ’80s new folk bursts onto the scene with this tragic-comic ballad, one of the many highlights of the debut album I know.
“Can’t Get It Out of My Head” by Electric Light Orchestra
Jeff Lynne finally hit the Top Ten with this song from The Golden, which would soon be followed by a plethora of others throughout the 1970s and 1980s.
“You Can’t Always Get What You Want” by The Rolling Stones
It’s a long title befitting a long melody, the group’s most enduring song. let it bleed album.