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Pavement - Cut Your Hair - Lyrics Meaning

Cut Your Hair is a song from Pavement's second album, Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain, that was released in 1994. The song is a satirical look at the music industry and the pressures to conform to the industry standards of the times. The song begins with a conversation about why the singer should cut his hair to project a clean image for the promotion of the band's latest record. Malkmus makes reference to charting the band's popularity and how record labels will the use the fear of falling into obscurity as a tool to manipulate and control the band.

The second verse is similar. There is a new, terrific band that everyone is talking about, but not because of the music, because of their look. The concertgoers are excited about this new band but don't actually recall a song or lyric, instead they ask, "Did you see the drummer's hair?" The third verse begins as a want ad for a band member, but he must have "lamb chops" and "No big hair!" There is no mention of the experience needed. The singer goes on to say that the music is important, but only if it sells. The song fades out as Malkmus reiterates to his audience that the aesthetic is what sells and is the key to industry longevity.

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