I love a good rhyme.
Eminem is the king for me – check out this verse from Lose Yourself.
“His palms are sweaty, knees weak, arms are heavy
There’s vomit on his sweater already, mom’s spaghetti
He’s nervous, but on the surface he looks calm and ready
To drop bombs, but he keeps on forgettin”.
You have the end-line rhymes of heavy, spaghetti, ready, forgettin’, but also sweaty and already from mid-line. Also the internal rhymes of palms, arms, mom, vomit, calm, bombs and on, and then nervous and surface. That’s 15 rhymes in 4 lines. Genius.
Less dense rhymes can be just as effective though, especially if they are unusual. Here’s a great one from Joni Mitchell’s The Last Time that I saw Richard.
“Richard got married to a figure skater
He bought her a dishwasher and a coffee percolator”.
The world of musical comedy is also full of clever, funny rhymes. Victoria Wood’s Let’s Do It is one of my favourites in this genre.
“I’m on fire,
I could handle half the tenors in a male voice choir”.
However sometimes I also love a bad one – at the very least they are certainly worth pointing out!
This is despite Toto shoehorning one of the most bizarre lines in pop history – “Sure as Kilimanjaro rises like Olympus above the Serengeti” – into the second verse to rhyme with ‘company’ in the second line.
Also in spite of the non-sensical use of the line ‘how is the weather’ into the ending of the Turtles hit just because it rhymed and it seemed like they were tired of singing the line ‘So Happy Together’!
Finally, the romantic world is full of both good and bad ones. Hallmark have made a lot of money from dodgy Valentines Day rhymes. Here’s one that always made me simultaneously smile and cringe…
“I love you I love you I love almighty
I wish your pyjamas were next to my nightie.
Don’t be mistaken, don’t be misled –
I meant on the clothes-line, not in my bed”!
That’s it for today – I’m just spending time chiming about some crimes and punch lines of prime rhyming.
If anyone has any more examples I’d love to hear them…