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Aimee Mann delivers deadpan songs with intelligent irony on “@#%&! Smilers”. She takes a dim view of our materialistic world: “You got a lot of money, but you can’t afford the freeway.” Bouncy, in a downbeat sort of way. Listen:

You got a lot of money, but you can’t afford the freeway
The road to Orange County leaves an awful lot of leeway
Where everyone’s a doctor or a specialist in retail
They’ll sell you all the speed you want if you can take the blackmail
You know it, I know it
Why don’t you just show it?
You got a lot of money, but you can’t afford the freeway
You got a lot of money, but you cannot keep your bills paid
The sacrifice is worth it just to hang around the arcade
You found yourself a prophet, but you left him on the boardwalk
Another chocolate Easter bunny, hollowed out by your talk
You know it, I know it
Why don’t you just show it?
You got a lot of money, but you can’t afford the freeway
And everything I do is wrong
But at least I’m hanging on
You got a lot of money, but you can’t afford the freeway


Intro:
to deliver songs – Lieder abliefern/ singen
deadpan – trocken
take a dim view of something – etwas kritisch betrachten
bouncy – schwungvoll
downbeat – pessimistisch

Lyrics:
can’t afford – sich nicht leisten können
freeway – Autobahn, Wortspiel: freier Weg
an awful lot of leeway – arg viel Freiraum
a specialist in retail – Facheinzelhändler
speed – Geschwindigkeit, Rauschmittel
if you can take the blackmail – wenn du die Erpressung aushälst
keep bills paid – Rechnungen rechtzeitig bezahlen
the sacrifice is worth it – das Opfer ist es wert
hang around the arcade – in der Spielhalle herumhängen
boardwalk – Strandpromenade
hollowed out by your talk – durch dein Geschätz ausgehöhlt
hang on – dranbleiben, es überstehen

Aimee Mann is using YouTube, with a do-it-yourself video contest inviting people to interpret her song, “Freeway”. After 2 weeks, 56 people had responded. – Everyone is a star, right? ;-)
Here’s my favorite entry:

learning english with songs :-) englischlernen mit liedern