A Medley of the La Las and Na Nas and Da Das

A joyous and creative experiment, the “history of lyrics that aren’t lyrics”:

Unfortunately, you can also hear the devolution of mainstream pop as the quality steeply drops in the songs chosen from the last couple decades.

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About Daniel Fincke

Dr. Daniel Fincke  has his PhD in philosophy from Fordham University and spent 11 years teaching in college classrooms. He wrote his dissertation on Ethics and the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. On Camels With Hammers, the careful philosophy blog he writes for a popular audience, Dan argues for atheism and develops a humanistic ethical theory he calls “Empowerment Ethics”. Dan also teaches affordable, non-matriculated, video-conferencing philosophy classes on ethics, Nietzsche, historical philosophy, and philosophy for atheists that anyone around the world can sign up for. (You can learn more about Dan’s online classes here.) Dan is an APPA  (American Philosophical Practitioners Association) certified philosophical counselor who offers philosophical advice services to help people work through the philosophical aspects of their practical problems or to work out their views on philosophical issues. (You can read examples of Dan’s advice here.) Through his blogging, his online teaching, and his philosophical advice services each, Dan specializes in helping people who have recently left a religious tradition work out their constructive answers to questions of ethics, metaphysics, the meaning of life, etc. as part of their process of radical worldview change.

  • kdan59

    How can they leave out classics such as “Me and Bobby McGee” (Na na na na, etc), “Tutti Frutti”, and assorted James Brown and Screamin’ Jay Hawkins songs?

  • James Sweet

    Daniel, there is only one possible way for me to respond to your final comment there:

    lol wut ur old ftw

  • Desert Son, OM

    They could have started earlier than 1965, too.

    Ella Fitzgerald and Cab Calloway, to name just two giants of scat singing.

    Although, they may have been strictly limiting the genre to pop, so what do I know?

    Still learning,


  • Desert Son, OM

    Er, earlier than 1964. I stand corrected myself.

    Still learning,


  • Hercules Grytpype-Thynne

    What? No room in the “history of lyrics that aren’t lyrics” for the best example ever?

  • rcs

    Fun video, but needs a reference to Who put the Bomp?

  • chezjake

    Even before “Who put the Bomp”, from the earliest days of DooWop in 1954, you just can’t beat “Sh-Boom” for lyrics that aren’t lyrics.

    • rcs

      I fell in love dancing to Sh-Boom. Over and over again. With the same guy. We’re still together.

      Who Put the Bomp is a fun tribute to doo-wop though.