Love ain’t what it used to be, I guess. And what it used to be was creepy and stalker-ish. How these songs were possible isn’t my greatest concern… it’s the fact that they were popular!
Each of these songs were certifiable as The Shit at the time of their initial release (or in one case, re-release).
- Little Peggy March’s I Will Follow Him (1963)
This one should be obvious. But it should be noted that it’s a remake of a French song… about stalking. It should also be noted that Little Peggy March was 15 when she recorded this (and she’s still the youngest female artist to have a U.S. chart-topping single).
- The Bells’ Stay Awhile (1971)
Sample lyrics: Into my room he creeps? Into my dreams he peeps? This is a love song? (BTW, I love this video someone made, mostly because the dude is wearing an eye patch…)
- Blondie’s One Way or Another (1979)
Singer Debbie Harry based this song on her ex that once stalked her. I never realized it was about that, although I should have from the chorus, or with these lyrics: I’ll walk down the mall/ Stand over by the wall/ Where I can see it all/ Find out who ya call…
- Bennie Mardones’ Into the Night (1980 and 1989)
Okay, this one isn’t as heavy on the stalker side as it is creepy. With lyrics like She’s just 16 years old/ Leave her alone, they say, it’s a creepy win. Neil Diamond almost made this list for the same reason, but there was some extrapolating involved. He wrote Girl, You’ll Be a Woman Soon in 1967, then he wrote Sweet Caroline in 1969 about Caroline Kennedy… who was 12 at the time.
- The Police’s Every Breathe You Take (1983)
Sting claims it’s more about Big Brother than a voyeuristic lover, but either way… heebie-jeebies ensue.
- Lionel Richie’s Hello (1984)
If it weren’t for the video, this one could have slid by unnoticed. But I’m not blind… that was probably a poor choice of words. Don Henley’s Boys of Summer almost took a spot for swimming around stalking (I’m driving by your house/ Though I know that you’re not home… Remember how you drove me crazy?/ Remember how I made you scream?), but its video, which is nowhere to be (easily) found, kept memories of it light and nostalgic.
So where are all the good creepy stalker songs these days? In 27 years, have they truly gone the way of Just Shitty?