Some Say (I Got Devil)

Album: Gather Me (1971)

Songfacts®:

  • "Some Say (I Got Devil)" is the dark, haunting counterpoint to the bubbly cuteness of "Brand New Key," which was the breakout hit from the Gather Me album.

    In "Some Say," Melanie denies claims that she's got the devil in her, but we're left feeling she's unsure of that. The doubt is clear in the contradiction of the final lines.

    Some say I got devil
    Some say I got angel
    But I'm just this girl in trouble
    I don't think I'm in danger
    No I'm not in danger
    No, I know I'm not in danger


    She's in trouble, but she's not in danger? As a whole, the lyrics and the tone leave the impression of a woman who is, indeed, in danger. She seems to know it, too, though she's lying to others and to herself about it.
  • Melanie is far from nefarious, but in 1971 there was a faction in America that believed folk singers like her were akin to the Devil, out to corrupt America. Melanie made a big impression with her performance at Woodstock and has spent her career advocating for human rights. Speaking with Songfacts, she explained that her approach is always to be for a cause, which keeps the intention positive. "When you position yourself 'against,' you're not really going to get anywhere," she said. "People like to be right, so if you're presenting yourself against something they think is right, you're not really going to get anywhere."
  • Morrissey released a cover of this song as the final track on his California Son album in 2019. At 4:09, it's the longest song on that album.

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