Songs That Would Have Been Different If Co-Written With Philosophers


“The Shadow of Your Cave Wall” – Tony Bennett (J. Mandel/P.F. Webster/Plato)
“Being and Time In a Bottle” – Jim Croce (J. Croce/M. Heidegger)
“Abyss On My List” – Hall and Oates (D. Hall/J. Oates/ F. Nietzsche)

Those are a few titles from “Ten Popular Songs That Would Have Been Different Had They Been Co-Writtten With Influential Thinkers From History” at McSweeney’s.

Any philosopher-featuring additions to the list?

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B. Polite
B. Polite
6 years ago

“No Changes” — David Bowie (D. Bowie/Z. from Elea)

Eric Wiland
Eric Wiland
6 years ago

Album:
“Smells Like World Spirit” by Nirvana (Cobain / Novoselic / Grohl / Hegel)

Jc Beall
6 years ago

“Socrates went down to Georgia” by Charlie Daniels Band (Plato). [He was looking for a soul to steal. He was in a bind; he was way behind; he was willing to make a deal.]

Adam Curry
Adam Curry
6 years ago

“Pour Some Sugar With Me”–Def Leppard (J. Elliott/S. Clark/P. Collen/J. Perry)

Rad Student
Rad Student
6 years ago

“Subterranean Homesick Missing Shade of Blue” (B. Dylan, D. Hume)

Eric
Eric
6 years ago

“All The Small Things” blink 182 feat. Democritus

“Zombie” by The Cranberries and David Chalmers

Julinna O.
Julinna O.
6 years ago

“Born This Way In Nature” (L. Gaga/J. Laursen/ J. J. Rousseau*) *Actually a musician and composer)

Dani
Dani
6 years ago

“Miracles” by Insane Clown Posse feat. David Lewis

Alex
Alex
Reply to  Dani
6 years ago

Little known fact: artistic disagreements over the production of this song was the catalyst for the breakup of the ICP/Hume supergroup.

Tipper
Tipper
6 years ago

“Born To Hand Jive” (explicit) — Sha Na Na (J. Jacobs / W. Casey / C. McGinn)

Sam Duncan
6 years ago

Gotta Have Faith (Despite Its Paradoxical Nature) -G. Michael and S. Kierkegaard
Mama Tried – M. Haggard, A. Augustine
Born to Be Radically Evil – Steppenwolf, I. Kant

Alan White
Alan White
6 years ago

“What Proud Mary Didn’t Know”–John Fogerty with Frank Jackson

Rad Student
Rad Student
6 years ago

“(Unmoved) Pusherman” (C. Mayfield / Aristotle)

B. Polite
B. Polite
6 years ago

“Enter Swampman” — by Metallica (J. Hetfield/K. Hammett/L. Ulrich/D. Davidson)

B. Polite
B. Polite
6 years ago

“Total Eclipse of Descartes” — by Bonnie Tyler (J. Steinman/C. S. Peirce)

recent grad
recent grad
6 years ago

“Man in the Vat” – Alice in Chains and H. Putnam

Spinozone
Spinozone
6 years ago

“Yellow, Nasty, Brutish and Short Submarine” – The Beatles, feat. T. Hobbes

“Twinkle, Twinkle Evening Star” – Various Artists, feat. G. Frege

philscumbag
philscumbag
6 years ago

“We are the Champions” – Queen (F. Mercury/A.Rand)

James
James
Reply to  philscumbag
6 years ago

Hobbes

Jeff Sebo
6 years ago

“Lose Your Self” – Eminem, f. D. Dennett

MH
MH
6 years ago

“I’m waiting for maximising man” – The Velvet Underground and Adam Smith
“Can’t buy me love (and other things money can’t buy)” – The Beatles feat. Michael Sandel
“Boys don’t perform crying” – The Cure with special guest Judith Butler
“What a possible world” Louis “Leibniz” Armstrong

MH
MH
6 years ago

“Will to Raw Power” – Friedrich and the Stooges

Creature of Darkness
Creature of Darkness
6 years ago

“Let It Be the Value of a Bound Variable” The Beatles feat. W.V. Quine

Steve
Steve
6 years ago

‘We will rock you’ (Queen/Sysiphus/Camus)

‘A kind of blue’ Miles Davis (Goodman remix)

PS I am insanely proud of the latter

Scott Forschler
Scott Forschler
Reply to  Steve
6 years ago

‘Grue, Grue, My Love is Grue’ (Sinatra/Goodman)

Alan White
Alan White
6 years ago

And some that actually exist as parodies:

“Make a Talk on the Ryle Side” Lou Reed with Daniel Dennett
“How Do I Mend the Beta Part?” The Bee Gees with Peter van Inwagen
“Good Inductions” The Beach Boys with Alan Hajek
“Two Sides Now” Joni Mitchell with David Chalmers

They’re old hat and pretty lame but just click on my name to see em and many others even worse. . .
BTW I wish I’d parodied “Total Eclipse of Descartes”!

Tom
Tom
6 years ago

What is it like to be a bat out of hell? (M. Loaf / T. Nagel)

Brandon Beasley
6 years ago

Language Games People Play – Parsons/Woolfson/Wittgenstein

Inference Ticket to Ride – Lennon/McCartney/Ryle

Welcome to the Turing Machine – Waters/Putnam

Sam Duncan
6 years ago

This Land is Not Your Land, This Land is My Land – W. Guthrie and R. Nozick

James
James
6 years ago

Like a Rolling Stone – Dylan/Camus

James
James
6 years ago

God Only Knows – Wilson/Asher and Berkeley/Plantinga

Emma
Emma
6 years ago

“Non, je ne minimax regrette rien” – Dumont/Vaucaire/Savage, performed by Edith Piaf

Paul Giladi
Paul Giladi
6 years ago

I Just Can’t Stop Molyneux – Michael Jackson/George Berkeley

Christopher Hitchcock
6 years ago

I have a long list of songs that WERE co-written by philosophers:

“What’s the matter here?” 10,000 Maniacs/Berkeley
“Feeling yourself disintegrate” Flaming Lips/Hume
“Out of the Shadows” Sarah MacLaghlan/Plato
“Are You Experienced?” Hendrix/Laurie Paul
“Cat Food” King Crimson/Bertrand Russell (OK, that one is a bit obscure)
“No Time” The Guess Who/McTaggart
“Turn, Turn, Turn” Pete Seeger/Newton
“Five to One (No one here gets out alive)” The Doors/Philippa Foot/Judith Thomson
“Spirits in the Material World” The Police/Descartes
“Soul Meets Body” Death Cab for Cutie/Descartes
“Dreamer” Supertramp/Descartes
“Who Are You?” The Who/Locke/Dennett
“The Space Between” Dave Matthews/Zeno
“Que Sera Sera” Livingston/Evans/Calvin

Brandon
Brandon
Reply to  Christopher Hitchcock
6 years ago

I like your twist on the game! Some very clever ones.

I wracked my brain regarding the King Crimson one; I know the song, but not its relation to Russell. For a moment I thought it was the story about when he thought he had figured out that the ontological argument for God was sound, and threw whatever tin he was carrying at the time up in the air and caught it–but I’m pretty sure it was a tobacco tin? But maybe not. Please enlighten me! (BTW Cat Food is great; a paradigm of ’70s progressive rock with incredibly silly lyrics. Love it. They played it on their most recent tour, too!)

Christopher Hitchcock
Reply to  Brandon
6 years ago

In *The Problems of Philosophy*, Russell offers an argument for the existence of an external world based on the fact that his cat eats at regular intervals, regardless of whether he is observing the cat or not. If the cat exists only in his mind, it shouldn’t continue to get hungry while he is not observing it.

Christopher Hitchcock
6 years ago

“No Bare Necessities” Gilkyson/Hume/Lewis

Christopher Hitchcock
6 years ago

“Good Citations” The Beach Boys/Google Scholar

Christopher Hitchcock
6 years ago

“Stop Believing” Journey/Sextus Empiricus

Scott Forschler
Scott Forschler
6 years ago

‘Golden Rule’ (D. Bowie/R.M. Hare and many others)

Bill Baykan
Bill Baykan
6 years ago

“I Want to Hold Your Hidden Hand” – Lennon & McCartney & Smith

Spencer Case
Spencer Case
6 years ago

“One” — Metallica/Parmenides

Spencer Case
Spencer Case
6 years ago

If “I Wanna Be Sedated” were co-written by G.E. Moore, it might actually sedate you.