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Beautiful South - 36D - Lyrics Meaning



Written by band members Paul Heaton and Dave Rotheray, this song first appeared on the album `0898 Beautiful South'.

The song begins gently, lulling listeners into believing it's a ballad with singer Dave Hemingway telling a woman she has no need to make such an effort with her appearance in order to impress him. As the livelier chorus comes in, bringing with it the voice of Paul Heaton, all thoughts of a gentle love song crumble when it becomes clear that the singers are not so enamoured with the woman after all.

The lyrics appear to be a scathing attack on glamour models with lines such as, `36D, so what? Is that all you've got?' but the content caused such offence to vocalist Briana Corrigan that she refused to sing on the track.

"She found offence with a number of our songs," says Hemingway, "and many times we changed lyrics when we realised that she was right."

With the line, `You cheapen and you nasty every woman in this land,' Heaton's feelings on the subject are crystal clear but Hemmingway later commented, "We all agree that we should have targeted the media as sexist instead of blaming the girls for taking off their tops." He also said, "The misogyny of the song was not intended at all...I sometimes regret that the song was released at all."


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