Lyrics that bug you: Coast to coast, L.A. to Chicago

I recently stumbled onto some DJs on XM 20 on 20 doing a segment on ‘lyrics that bug you.’  They were cracking about Sade’s line from their classic 1984 pop-jazz hit “Smooth Operator” from the album Diamond Life.  The comment went something like this.

DJ1: “Coast to coast, L.A. to Chicago” always bothered me.
DJ2:  Yeah, I don’t know what coast she was talking about!

Indeed, even as an 8-year old, these lyrics bothered me.  Never mind that the song is not actually about a telephone operator as I innocently assumed at the time, but about a jet-setting lothario.

So what song lyrics bother you?

Check out Sade Adu in this super-stylish, super-80’s film-noir ish adaptation of the song.


5 thoughts on “Lyrics that bug you: Coast to coast, L.A. to Chicago

  1. Bothersome lyrics… I’ve never been a fan of the “oh yeahs” and “oh nos” that frequently accompany the “oh whoas” that precede and follow verses and choruses, especially if the “yeahs” and “nos” contradict the surrounding lyrics.

    For example, hypothetically, if Go West’s “King of Wishful Thinking” went like “I don’t need to fall at your feet just cause you cut me to the bone, oh yeah”…shouldn’t it be “oh no?”

    I love Natalie Imbruglia’s song “Smoke”, but what ruins it for ming is the “what’s up with that” in the verse.

    Congratulations on having a “Liked” post!

  2. Mike

    Sade’s version of “Coast to Coast, L.A. to Chicago” means the playboy guy flies from N.Y. to L.A. and then flies from L.A. to Chicago. This also bothered me for years until I really paid attention to the lyrics…

    Now, Snoop Dog’s version is obviously a play on Sade’s song, but since he is from the L.A. area and from the style he delivers his lyrics, I believe his “Coast to Coast, L.A. to Chicago” is literally…that he is the man from L.A. all the way to Chicago with a diss against New York City, the true “East Coast”, where in the rap game L.A. and Oakland represent the “West Coast”.

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