Lord Only Knows
by Beck

  • songfacts ®
  • Artistfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • This country-flavored track opens with a shriek and unfolds into Beck's trademark abstract lyrics, seemingly about giving up on an old life to start a new one, "throwing your two-bit cares down the drain" - at least in part. It also ends with "going back to Houston to do the hot dog dance... to get me some pants." Make of that what you will.
  • Sometimes one sound can inspire an entire song. In this case, it was the shout at the beginning, a sample from folk rocker Mike Millius' 1969 track "Lookout For Lucy."

    "It was a great record, another one that we all just listened to and vibed off," the album's co-producer Mike Simpson explained in a MusicRadar interview. "Basically there's this yelp sound at the beginning of this song that was Mike Millius and I don't know what happened but Beck heard this yelp and it inspired everything else that came out on this track."
  • This also samples drums from the Edgar Winter Group's "When It Comes" (1972).
  • Beck repeats the album title, usually cited as the phonetic rendering of the Mexican slang "órale," throughout the outro. The expression can be used as a simple greeting or an agreement that something is cool/impressive. Indie rocker Stephen Malkmus, however, claims Beck called the album Odelay "because it was taking so long to come out. Seriously. That's why he called it that," he told Spin magazine.
Please sign in or register to post comments.

Comments

Be the first to comment...

Allen Toussaint - "Southern Nights"They're Playing My Song

A song he wrote and recorded from "sheer spiritual inspiration," Allen's didn't think "Southern Nights" had hit potential until Glen Campbell took it to #1 two years later.

Tanita TikaramSongwriter Interviews

When she released her first album in 1988, Tanita became a UK singing sensation at age 19. She talks about her darkly sensual voice and quirky songwriting style.

Judas PriestSongwriter Interviews

Rob Halford, Richie Faulkner and Glenn Tipton talk twin guitar harmonies and explain how they create songs in Judas Priest.

Christopher CrossSongwriter Interviews

The man who created Yacht Rock with "Sailing" wrote one of his biggest hits while on acid.

Chad Channing (Nirvana, Before Cars)Songwriter Interviews

Chad tells tales from his time as drummer for Nirvana, and talks about his group Before Cars.

Director Wes Edwards ("Drunk on a Plane")Song Writing

Wes Edwards takes us behind the scenes of videos he shot for Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley and Chase Bryant. The train was real - the airplane was not.