When we hear that Pharrell Williams co-wrote 43 percent of the songs played on the radio in 2004, or that Dr. Luke wrote virtually every hit song in 2014, we’re barely even surprised. If anything, we’re just glad that every credits box doesn’t say “LyricsBot2000” yet. And besides, it makes no difference who wrote the song as long as it’s good, right? Actually, in some cases, it makes all the difference. Here are seven famous songs that take on a whole new meaning when you find out who wrote them — with implications that range from the fascinating to the terrifying.
#7. Joan Jett’s “Do You Wanna Touch Me” Was Written By A Convicted Child Molester
Joan Jett scored a major hit in 1980 with “Do You Wanna Touch Me,” a sexy glam rock song that perfectly fit her “I’ll punch you during sex (but you’ll like it)” persona.
It’s now considered a classic, so much so that HP used it for their TouchSmart (get it?) commercials, and Glee featured it in a scene set in a high school sex education class …
… which was probably the songwriter’s dream come true. You see, “Do You Wanna Touch Me” wasn’t originally by Jett — it was by Gary Glitter. You might know him as one of the leading figures of the glam era. Or as the writer of that hockey chant song.
Or from his many, many statutory rape cases.
The man is currently in jail for abusing three kids during the time he wrote “Do You Wanna Touch Me,” and that wasn’t even a first for Glitter. He was jailed in Vietnam as well, for molesting two more girls under 13 — which should surprise nobody who’s actually paid attention to the song. It opens with:
We’ve been here too long
Tryin’ to get along
Pretending that you’re oh so shy
I’m a natural man
Doin’ all I can
My temperature is runnin’ high
My, my, my, whiskey and rye
Don’t it make you feel so fine?
Every growing boy
Needs a little joy
Even with her murder-eyes, she’s still the least-threatening choice to sing those words.
Yes, in the great tradition of “Baby It’s Cold Outside,” “Do You Wanna Touch Me” is a ballad about liquoring up girls and having your way with them. HP pulled the song from their ads when they found out Glitter could have gotten $140,000 in royalties, and as for Glee? They apparently agreed it was inappropriate for a show about teenagers, because they eventually replaced it in the U.K. … with “Afternoon Delight.”