There are thousands of songs about sex. Millions, even. But the funniest are the ones that demonstrate the subtle, obscure, or downright bizarre ways that singers let us know they’re in this kind of mood.
From Prince to Britney Spears, here are some of the most outrageous sexual innuendos in music:
“My milkshake brings all the boys out into the yard / And they’re like, it’s better than yours.” The Neptunes gave this song to Britney Spears but she wasn’t a fan, so Kelis took it for her properly titled 2003 album, Delicious, instead. Famous included in the teen comedy Bad girls, “Milkshake” feeds on the power of suggestion, as well as the joy of a woman celebrating her sexuality. Kelis herself told the Associated press Its a question of confidence. Literally though, it can’t really be anything other than a woman shaking her… trumps.
Shallows – “It’s not the meat”
Henry Glover and Syd Nathan’s R&B song was first recorded by The Swallows in 1951 and encouraged men not to care whether a woman was skinny or fat. However, Maria Muldaur’s performance in 1974 was later credited with reversing the message to refer to women enjoying the technique in relation to the size of a man’s penis. Both messages seem equally valuable.
It’s rare to hear Prince do not being explicit about sex, but on Tamborine, it lands on a slightly more subtle, albeit odd, metaphor. He sings: “I don’t care about one-night stands / With streetcars juggling seventeen / I just want to settle down / And play around my baby’s tambourine.” That’s the strangest euphemism for a vagina we’ve heard, anyway.
Rihanna – “Shut Up and Drive”
Rihanna has always been good at injecting her sex songs with a hint of impatience, and “Shut Up and Drive” is no exception. Loaded with car-related metaphors (“Takes you where you want to go, if you know what I mean / I have to drive smoother than a limo …”), the trail builds on the chorus where Rihanna basically says it’s up to man to set off with that.
Nina Simone – “I want some sugar in my bowl”
Referencing the 1931 blues song “Need a Little Sugar in My Bowl”, Nina Simone crosses the fine line between sex and sleazy with this delightfully suggestive 1967 classic. She sings, “I want some steam on my clothes / Maybe I can fix things up so they go / What’s up daddy, come on, save my soul.”
50 Cent – “Candy store”
Not so nice: 50 Cent’s 2005 rap about letting his girlfriend “lick the lollipop.” “So attractive”, indeed. Yeah, Fiddy, we all know what you’re talking about.
Nirvana – “Heart Shaped Box”
Kurt Cobain’s moaning performance on one of Nirvana’s greatest songs should have been enough of a clue to its background. If that and the lyrics “I’ve been living in your heart-shaped box for weeks” haven’t, pay attention to this verse: “Meat-eating orchids don’t forgive anyone yet / I’m cutting myself.” angel hair and baby’s breath / Your Highness’s broken hymen, I stayed black / Throw your umbilical knot so I can go up right away. Yikes.
Possibly the least subtle sexual innuendo in pop music history, “Peacock” involved Katy Perry demanding to see her partner’s “pea-cock” to make sure he wasn’t all talking.
Britney Spears – “If You Are Looking For Amy”
Although the news reader literally clarified the meaning of the song at first, people still had a hard time understanding this 2009 single from Britney Spears. Written and produced by Max Martin, it appears to refer to both sex and the controversy surrounding Spears’ personal life. However, this also sparked controversy as the pronunciation of the title could be heard as “FUCK Me”. Scandalous.
DNCE – «Cake by the Ocean»
It took a few months after the song was released, but Joe Jonas’ pop group finally confirmed that, yes, it’s a song about sex. He apparently hails from the song’s co-writers, Mattman & Robin, mistaking “Cake by the Ocean” for the term “Sex on the Beach”.