Paramore will no longer play “Misery Business” for an incredibly feminist reason
On Friday, September 8th, at the Nashville Municipal Auditorium, Paramore lead singer Hayley Williams announced that the band will no longer play their hit 2007 song, “Misery Business”—and it’s for an extremely positive reason.
As many may recall, the fast-paced rock song entails unmistakable slut-shaming, specifically with the line, “Second chances, they don’t ever matter, people never change / Once a whore, you’re nothing more, I’m sorry that’ll never change.”
While addressing the crowd, Williams said, "Tonight, we're playing the song for the last time for a really long time. This is a choice that we have made because we feel that we should. We feel like it's time to move away from it for a little while." Before singing, she noted, "This is to every bad decision that led us here. This is to all the embarrassing things we might have said. But we owned up to it, and we grew."
This isn’t the first time Williams has spoken out against the lyrics. In a 2015 Tumblr post, she wrote, “‘Misery Business’ is not a set of lyrics that I relate to as a 26-year-old woman. I haven’t related to it in a very long time. Those words were written when I was 17…admittedly, from a very narrow-minded perspective. It wasn’t really meant to be this big philosophical statement about anything,” she wrote. “It was quite literally a page in my diary about a singular moment I experienced as a high schooler.”
And perhaps as expected, not all Paramore fans are happy with the news.
Let’s get one thing clear: “PC culture” or “2018” didn’t force Paramore to retire “Misery Business.” Paramore—a band comprised of thinking and ever-evolving individuals—decided the lyrics no longer represent their values or beliefs, and they thusly no longer wanted to share this particular message with the world. As Williams said, “we owned up to it, and we grew.”
We’re applauding the band’s decision to put this particular song to rest, and—perhaps even more importantly—we applaud their ability to admit were wrong and actually attempt to do something about it. Words have profound power, and what we say matters. Especially when our words have the power to reach literally millions of fans.
Thank you, Paramore, for recognizing the power of your platform and taking a stand on this issue. There might be a few haters in the peanut gallery, but please know you’re standing on the right side of history on this one.