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Artist: Terry Owenby


Definition of Mondegreen:

a word or phrase that results from a mishearing of something said or sung.
Classic example: "there's a bathroom on the right" is a mondegreen for "there's a bad moon on the rise."

"Lady Elaine"

These two examples are from a mondegreen swap, and for anyone who may not know what a "Mondegreen" is, it's the misinterpretation of song lyrics. When I was in high school and first heard Bob Dylan's "Lay Lady Lay", I would sing "Lady Elaine, lay across my big brass bed." It wasn't until I was in my 40s that I learned the correct words. I still love this song but now I sing along using the right words!

"One More Tomato"

Some years back, one of my husband's friends thought that the song "Guantanamera". was actually called "One More Tomato." Then, one time, when we were at a Mexican restaurant with my mother-in-law, she thought that "Guantanamera" was actually called "Carmen Carmela" and she requested that very song from a mariachi band that was playing. The band looked perplexed but after some thought, they began playing Guantanamera. How they figured it out, I'll never know. My mother-in-law was pleased that they knew the song, and they didn't bother to correct her. I wonder how many other versions of Guantanamera are floating around out there?