Karen Fratti
August 16, 2017 10:42 am
John Shearer/LP5/Getty Images

We’ve all been there: Cruising around with your friends, blaring cheesy radio, and belting out some song, only to have everyone bust out laughing when you totally mess up the words. It’s one thing to jumble a lyric or not keep up to the beat, but it’s a whole different sort of hilarious when you actually think you’re saying the right words, despite them not making any sense at all. Even right now, you’re probably sitting there thinking you have all the lyrics to your favorite songs down, but it’s super likely there are tons of song lyrics you mishear and are still singing wrong.

There’s actually a word for mishearing song lyrics!

It’s science: They’re called “mondegreens” and they happen when we’re hearing the same exact acoustic information that everyone else hears when the song is on, but for some reason, communication totally breaks down. According to The New Yorker, no one really knows exactly why this happens. It could be because we can’t always see the singer’s face or have other clues to help us out with context. For example, if we first heard a song via video, like way back in the days of MTV or already know the title, mondegreens might occur less.

Here are some commonly misheard song lyrics that will make you LOL all day.

1The Rembrandts, “I’ll Be There For You” (Friends theme song)

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

2Elton John, “Benny and the Jets”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

3David Bowie, “Suffragette City”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

4Lady Gaga & Beyoncé, “Telephone”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

5Steve Wonder, “Signed, Sealed, Delivered”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

6Radiohead, “The Bends”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

7The Pussycat Dolls, “When I Grow Up”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

8Manfred Mann’s Earth Band, “Blinded By The Light”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

9Jimi Hendrix, “Purple Haze”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

10Taylor Swift, “Blank Space”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

11Nirvana, “Smells Like Teen Spirit”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

12Beyoncé, “Single Ladies”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

13Lorde, “Royals”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

14Queen, “We Will Rock You”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

15Radiohead, “Creep”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

16Timbaland & OneRepublic, “Apologize”

The wrong lyric:

The actual lyric:

Now you that know, you can just pretend you always knew.

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