"I feel really sorry for James Blunt. Because every morning, he has to wake up and think 'Oh my God, I'm James Blunt.'"
Music is a dog-eat-dog business, and when these dogs bite, they bite hard.
For the band of the same name starring Robbie Williams and Gary Barlow, see Take That (Band).
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Hard rock and derivatives (including heavy metal, nü metal, and industrial)
- Aborted most likely wrote "Your Entitlement Means Nothing" about Miri Milman, Sven's ex-wife. The gender of the individual being targeted is not mentioned, but it is known that they had an extremely acrimonious divorce and that Sven despises her, and the line "I saw your world fall apart" could easily allude to a death in her family that occurred shortly before their divorce. Sven will likely never say who it is, but the evidence for the target being Miri is strong.
- Act Of Defiance has several of these. "Throwback" (with lyrics by Chris Broderick) is a clear and extremely vicious shot at Dave Mustaine and accuses him of being a washed-up, jaded asshole and pathological liar whose success can largely be credited to the efforts of the people whose hard work he loudly took credit for. "Refrain and Re-Fracture" (with lyrics by Henry Derek Bonner), while more ambiguous, is more than likely a shot at Joey Jordison, who screwed over Bonner during his time in Scar the Martyr; the lyrics, while less direct than "Throwback", essentially boil down to "you're a washed-up loser with no good ideas of your own who is nothing without Slipknot, and every band you form is just you circling the drain and it's telling that they don't go anywhere even with your name attached; quit sucking your own dick and pay me what you owe, you cheap fuck".
- Aerosmith's "Dude (Looks Like a Lady)" was a good-natured Take That to Vince Neil, lead singer of Mötley Crüe (It's obvious why.◊) The band still thinks it's hilarious.
- In a jab against Tipper Gore's PMRC, who criticized some of their lyrics, "F.I.N.E.*" includes the lyric "And Tipper thinks I'm alright!"
- Angus McSix's first-ever single "Master of the Universe" throws some serious shade at Gloryhammer over the circumstances of lead vocalist Thomas Winkler's departure, saying "Glory left my hammer" and "I came right back / One better!" The name of the band is itself a play on Winkler's former character Angus McFife (which sounds like "Angus McFive", so "one better" is "McSix"), and in the song, Angus discards aforementioned hammer in favor of a Cool Sword and trades his green leathers for golden armor.
- Anthrax have done a few Take Thats:
- "Make Me Laugh" is a song attacking TV preachers, showing them in a very negative light.
- "Startin' Up A Posse" is a Take That at censorship and moral guardians — and is appropriately loaded to the gills with swear words.
- A change of vocalist and another Take That: "Packaged Rebellion" is their response to MTV's 'rebel' pack, which was sold at a price, and consists of 'rebel' gear — which was essentially a whole lot of T-shirts and caps that had 'rebel' on them. So you had to 'pay to rebel'.
- Rap-metal group Biohazard had done several songs that fit this trope, but one song, "Business", was a full-frontal attack on bands that tried to sell out and push for record sales.
- The Black Dahlia Murder wrote "Denounced, Disgraced" about former guitarist John Kempainen, who spent the entirety of his run in the band as little more than a mouth to feed due to his complete lack of contributions (he didn't even really write his own leads; whenever it came time to track them, he improvised them with some aid from Strnad and Eschbach) and quit with virtually no warning right before a major tour.
- Bring Me the Horizon has the song "No Need For Introductions, I've Read About Girls Like You On The Backs Of Toilet Doors", which is aimed at a "fan" who claimed that the band had assaulted and pissed on her to sully their reputation.
- "Tattooed Millionaire" by Bruce Dickinson is another Take That! at Nikki Sixx, according to Sixx himself. The song's video, which contains a guy who looks an awful lot like Nikki, seems to back this up.
- Atsushi Sakurai of BUCK-TICK had a song titled "Acid," but the title and song were rejected by the label per the censorship standards of the day. He changed around a few lyrics, and changed the title to Speed, which is a far more destructive drug than acid. That said, technically "speed" could refer to something other than the drug, so he managed to score a Take That! to the label and achieve Refuge in Audacity at the same time.
- Death's song "Spiritual Healing" was a send-up of recently disgraced televangelist/faith "healer" Peter Popoff. To amplify the derision they made it the title track of its album and put a thinly disguised, sneering likeness of Popoff on the album cover. "Low Life", meanwhile, was almost certainly aimed at Kam Lee (Chuck never confirmed it, but given the lyrics and the well-known extreme animosity between the two, there really are no other candidates).
- Shortly after Decoded Feedback covered The Frozen Autumn's darkwave ballad "Again" in their native Hellektro style, TFA responded with a Softer and Slower Cover of DF's "Bio Vital".
- Deicide wrote "Misery of One" about Eric Hoffman, which accuses him of being a delusional loser who caused all of his own problems and then opted to blame them on Benton and his brother; the message to be taken from it seems to be "this was all your fault, and now that you've burned all of your bridges with us and Brian, you're stuck with yourself. Have fun!".
- The song "Never Again" by Disturbed, whose lead singer is Jewish, rails against Nazis and the Holocaust. A whole piece of its chorus is directed at Holocaust-deniers and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad himself.
- Dream Theater, surprisingly, also has these:
- "Never Enough", a song written by Mike Portnoy, is directed towards the negative section of their fanbase.
- There's also "As I Am", a song wrote by John Petrucci, and is a Take That! towards Queensr˙che's Mike Stone, who tried to give him some advice. "Honor Thy Father" is written by Mike Portnoy about his stepfather, and is to date the only Dream Theater song to feature a Precision F-Strike.
- A more light-hearted one: James LaBrie was a guest vocalist on Fates Warning's Parallels album and the band thanked Dream Theatre (sic) in the liner notes. Dream Theater responded in the liner notes of Images and Words by misspelling their name on purpose as Fatez Warning.
- Epica's "Run for a Fall" is about Mark Jansen's former band After Forever.
- "Everybody's Fool" is a dig at the emphasis the media makes on beauty and the sexualized self-images of female stars.
- Amy Lee has confirmed "Sick"" from their 2011 Self-Titled Album is about the problems with their recording company in making the album.
- When former guitarist Ben Moody left to songwrite with Avril Lavigne, her song "Don't Tell Me" included a line obviously tearing down "My Immortal". Amy Lee fired back against Moody on an unreleased song called "You".
- The song "Call Me When You're Sober" is a dig from the singer Amy Lee to 'Seether's singer, Shaun Morgan, following the nasty breakup between them. Seether retaliated with their song "Fake It".
- Falling in Reverse has several toward Escape the Fate (their lead singer's former band who kicked him out), like "I just learned that my fate is something I can't escape."
- "Liar" by Christian metal band Fireflight is one big Take That! against the worst kind of televangelists:I'm sick of all your lies
We see through your disguise
None of your dreams come true
You can't sell the truth
- Retro-thrash metal outfit Gama Bomb feature a pretty prominent Take That! in their song "Bullet Belt" against the tamer, lighter direction taken by older thrash bands in recent years. Some of the not-so-subtle (but very funny) lines include "Thrash titans of yesteryear / They have failed us with their recent piss!" and "Now we will vaporize / The diet metal pansies!"
- Gamma Ray has its fair share:
- "Rich and Famous" is a song against Money Songs and Rockstar Songs.
- The B-Side "Wannabees" is a Take That in the same way as "Are You Metal?", but in a more direct way, towards metal elitists.
- Gary Moore's "Led Clones" poked fun at rock bands like Kingdom Come that imitated Led Zeppelin in style and image in the late 1980s. Made all the more awesome with Ozzy Osbourne sharing vocals with Moore.
- Axl Rose must have some serious issues...OK, a lot of them.
- "Get In The Ring" features a spoken-word section a minute or two long where he blasts a selection of critics by, among other things, accusing them of being jealous of their fathers for "getting more pussy" than the critics. The line specifically refers to Robert Guccione Jr, whose father founded Penthouse Magazine, although Axl probably wouldn't mind interpreting it to apply to the other critics.
- In addition, the song "Sorry" off of Chinese Democracy is clearly a Take That to... somebody. Most people would say it's Slash.
- "Cryin' Like a Bitch" by Godsmack is directed at Nikki Sixx, after Cruefest II.
- GWAR seem to revel in this trope, each time another masked band turns up:
- When Lordi became famous in the United States, GWAR began mocking them, occasionally calling them a GWAR tribute band. In some live shows, they 'kill' Mr Lordi, the band's frontman, and one of the band members has the head of Mr Lordi on the guitar headstock. Lordi responded saying they never heard of GWAR, and Lordi's expanding fan base in the US may have unsettled them — something Oderus Urungus (Dave Brockie) denies.
- They traded Take Thats with Slipknot as well. They called Slipknot a GWAR tribute band, and mocked them. When Slipknot was on the verge of breaking up, Corey Taylor said he didn't want to stick around after being irrelevant, unlike GWAR. The chief monster, Dave/Oderus, responded with a very long rant of abuses, beginning with "Shut your whiny trap". Corey responded to that, saying he still loves GWAR, but they've not been in the news for releasing any albums and their circus has eclipsed their music.
- Helloween released a single called "Mr. Ego" that's dedicated to their former lead singer, Michael Kiske. The song is full of Take That! lines, like "Don't wanna hear your slimy voice" and "Your brain is just a bloated dummy."
- A gentler Take That! is "I Want Out," which was written by co-founder/former guitarist/way former lead singer Kai Hansen about how he wanted to leave the band. He did and founded Gamma Ray a few years later. Gamma Ray and Helloween frequently tour together and play "I Want Out" together as part of the final encore.
- 7 Sinners, includes a Take That in satirical form in the song "Are You Metal?". Disguised as a Heavy Meta song, Sascha Gerstner, guitarist of the band, said that the song was meant as a parody towards metal elitism, perhaps due to the bad reception their celebratin album Unarmed has.
- Iron Maiden have a surprising few:
- "Die with Your Boots On" is an attack on people who constantly speculate the end of the world, and suggests that the world's end has been supposedly predicted several times and we're still here ("Terror, death, destruction, all from the eastern sands, for the truth of all predictions is always in your hands.")
- "Still Life" opens with drummer Nicko McBrain speaking the phrase "What ho said the t'ing with the three 'bonce', don't meddle with things you don't understand...", played backwards. This was intended as a take that towards those who accused them of being satanists.
- "Holy Smoke" is a criticism to televangelists. Swaggart, who put Lead Bassist Steve Harris on the cover of his book Music: The New Pornography, gets another shot ("Jimmy the Reptile and all his friends") as does Tammy Fae Messner ("'Til the TV Queen gets her make-up clean!").
- "Weekend Warrior", directed at Irish football hooligans.
- "Virus", which is a vicious attack at critics and the fans who accused them for replacing their singer, and those who tried to convince people to stop listening to them for said reason.
- "These Colours Don't Run" is an attack at Sharon Osbourne and Zakk Wylde for, among the many things at the Ozzfest fiasco, running onstage with an American flag during "The Trooper", and Sharon's comments about Maiden swinging the Union Jack being "disrespectful". Which is ironic since she is British.
- Judas Priest's "Parental Guidance" was written as an insult to Tipper Gore and the PMRC (Parents Music Resource Center) who had put the song "Eat Me Alive" on the list of offensive songs for being alledgedly obscene.
- Katatonia has the song "Passing Bird", which is directed towards mall-goths and emo girls for faking depression and seeking attention for it.
- Kid Rock's "Never Met a Motherfucker Quite Like Me" video included a scene of him using toilet paper with Radiohead's logo on it. In interviews he's been a little less harsh, saying that he just doesn't understand the appeal of their music, and that "If I'm having a party and I've got some chicks over hanging out, and all my boys are hanging out, I'm not grabbing for the Radiohead CD."
- A Zeeland, Michigan high school student was given a one day suspension for wearing a shirt with Korn's logo on it to class, with the vice principal who issued the suspension describing their music as "indecent", "vulgar", and "obscene" in a subsequent interview. Once news of the incident became wide-spread enough to reach the band themselves, they donated hundreds of shirts to a local radio station so they could give them out to students outside of the school. They also started selling shirts which featured their logo on the front and the text of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution followed by "EXCEPT IN MICHIGAN" on the back.
- While the "lead zeppelin" example is a famous example against them note , Led Zeppelin is responsible for one of the most famous, if understated, of all time. After the release and critical backlash from Led Zeppelin III, they were getting remarks from critics that they were entirely built on hype and that their music couldn't sustain itself. In response, they released their next album with no title or even indication of their identity, to show that the music could sell itself. It went on to become one of the best-selling albums of all time.
- Robert Plant's 1988 solo hit "Tall Cool One" featured samples from his old band (!) as a cheeky swipe at the Beastie Boys, who sampled their music on Licensed to Ill, and quite possibly also Whitesnake, who had conspicuously mimicked Led Zeppelin.
- Lich King's "Black Metal Sucks". Pretty self explanatory.
- "Hot Dog" is a Limp Bizkit song which includes a long, out-of-nowhere attack on Trent Reznor using titles of his songs. Durst and Reznor had a MAJOR feud at that point; Durst infamously tried to fuck over Reznor's "Nothing Records" sub-label at Interscope, as far as stealing money that would have gone to promoting Trent's bands to promote Limp Bizkit and his groups at his sub-label at Interscope. Furthermore, the royalty issue was forced upon Durst because he outright sampled the music to "Closer" on the album as part of his "take that", without bothering to ask Trent Reznor for permission. When Reznor threatened to sue Durst, Interscope forced Durst to give Reznor a co-writing credit and royalties from the song to try and smooth things over.
- Linkin Park has a song titled "When They Come for Me", a ferocious Take That! at their fans who are still hung up on Hybrid Theory and Meteora.
- Loudness aimed more than a few Take Thats at George W. Bush (and at warmongering politicians in general). See their page for the full list of them.
- Out of the songs Taiji Sawada wrote and performed for Loudness, the band chose "Black Widow" as his memorial song. If you know anything of the events that led to Taiji's death and Kitami Terumi's involvement in them, it becomes fairly obvious why.
- Machine Head's "Aesthetics Of Hate" is a rabid lashout at a conservative blogger who after the death of Dimebag Darrel claimed that his heavy metal lifestyle lead to this end and claimed that he was almost subhuman. The sentiments of the song were echoed throughout much of the metal community.
- Marilyn Manson's first music video after breaking up with legendary beauty Dita von Teese featured numerous Take Thats at his newly ex-wife, including a scene of him lounging in a reproduction of their marital bed with his new nineteen-year-old girlfriend.
- Massacration has one towards people who loan albums and don't return them at all or return them damaged in their song "Suffocator of metal", even going so far as to declare them "not a headbenze".
- Former-Metallica-guitarist-turned-Megadeth-frontman Dave Mustaine has expressed disgust at a lot of stuff in his songs:
- Some of Megadeth's more standard Take That! songs are "Liar", which was directed towards former band-mate Chris Poland, and "Hook In Mouth" which was a Take That! towards the PMRC.
- The highlight, however, is the legendary feud between him and the band that fired him:
- His main target was drummer Lars Ulrich. It has been ongoing back and forth for decades now in many forms, from magazine interviews to Behind the Music documentaries to Metallica's Some Kind of Monster documentary feature film.
This has manifested in a song from Megadeth's 2004 album The System Has Failed entitled "Something I'm Not", in which the song in its entirety is a scathing denunciation of Metallica in general and Lars Ulrich in particular.
It gets funnier when you remember that Megadeth headlined a concert with Metallica around 1993 when Mustaine announced "the ten years of bullshit between Metallica and Megadeth is over!", though the feud seems to be all but forgotten these days, with Mustaine having nice things to say about everyone in his old band (even Kirk Hammett). Mustaine's sobering up and conversion to Christianity is a large part of why he's forgiven Metallica.
- Dave was also very bitter about Metallica's first album Kill 'Em All coming out with the songs he wrote on it when James and Lars promised him they wouldn't include them. They did credit him, but he was angry enough to record "The Mechanix" (Metallica rewrote it as "The Four Horsemen"). Several years later, on "Captive Honour", he refers to Metallica's immense popularity in the line "Kill em all, and you're a god" — he watched Metallica get called gods of metal thanks to songs he originally played on.
- His main target was drummer Lars Ulrich. It has been ongoing back and forth for decades now in many forms, from magazine interviews to Behind the Music documentaries to Metallica's Some Kind of Monster documentary feature film.
- Metallica retaliated Mustaine's attacks with the song "Master of Puppets", rumored to be about Dave's substance abuse issues.
- It's difficult to think of a Monster Magnet song that doesn't include some sort of Take That!. The songs that involve relationships tend to contain some particularly brutal slams.
- Their first hit single, "Negasonic Teenage Warhead", is a Take That! against grunge and other depressive music that was popular at the time — something that's a bit ironic considering that their album 4-Way Diablo belongs firmly in Creator Breakdown territory.
- "Little Bag of Gloom" from the aforementioned 4-Way Diablo is lead singer Dave Wyndorf's own Take That! against himself and other drug addicts after he nearly died from an overdose during the album's early production.
- Melvins had a track on their album Honky titled "Laughing with Lucifer at Satan's Sideshow" which was entirely comprised of a goofy backing track behind several voicemails and quotes from the suits at Atlantic during the band's tenure with them.
- Nightwish's "Master Passion Greed" is a shot at the supposed greed of Tarja Turunen's husband, Marcelo Cabuli, and his contribution to the process that led to Tarja's firing. "Bye Bye Beautiful" from the same album is a shot at Tarja herself, accusing her of not paying attention to the rest of the band. Tarja replied with her single "Enough", which calls Nightwish keyboardist and principal songwriter Tuomas Holopainen an "ego-selfish prima donna" in the first line, which sets the tone for the rest of the song.
- The Dark Element is fronted by Nightwish's second ex-vocalist, Anette Olzon, who was similarly fired in 2012. TDE's self-titled debut album contains the single "Dead to Me", which has been interpreted as a swipe at Nightwish. Though this is strictly Wild Mass Guessing: the song was written by guitarist Jani Liimatainen, who doesn't have much discernible reason to be personally mad at Nightwish.
- The video to "Starfuckers, Inc." by Nine Inch Nails features Trent Reznor throwing a Marilyn Manson album in a toilet. Considering Manson co-directed the video, appeared in it, has performed the song live with NIN before, and that the video digs at least a dozen other artists, his involvements seem to be purely self-parody, perhaps to keep the targets themselves from taking it too seriously. Not to mention that a NIN album is also in the toilet... and Manson was both signed by NIN's record label and had albums produced by Reznor.
- The song, however, is a serious Take That! at Courtney Love, who has evidently been blamed by both Reznor and Tori Amos for destroying Reznor's friendship with the latter.
- Ozzy Osbourne's "Miracle Man" is a shot at evangelists in general and Jimmy Swaggart in particular. Swaggart, who had been a heavy-handed critic of Ozzy, was involved in a rather messy prostitution scandal in 1988. Ozzy being Ozzy, the Take That! is incredibly blatant, but also completely awesome.
- "#1 Radio Single" is a Take That! and an Affectionate Parody at (usually angsty and romantic) mainstream 2000s rock such as Three Days Grace, Nickelback, Evans Blue, and Sick Puppies who often follow a similar sound but are also annoyingly catchy.
- "It's Just A Movie, Stupid" is about how unrealistic romance films are and calling out plots such as the girl whose boyfriend routinely cheats on her but she is Oblivious to Love to the best friend who secretly loves her.
- "Throwin' Down" is about Rob's ex-girlfriend, known as The Beast, who was apparently very immature and rude to him. It includes supposed recreations of voicemails left by The Beast, it is arguably the only Psychostick song where you can hear Rob being genuinely upset, and the very first lyric of the song? "Bitch."
- Rammstein's "Amerika" is a Take That! to the USA's influence in the world.
- "Links 2-3-4" was written by the band as an answer to those who accused them of being Nazis.
- Ricardo Iorio, former V8 and Herméticanote founder and leader, and frontman of Almafuerte, is very, VERY fond of this trope:
Mi rechazo hacia tus baladas de amornoteme llegó desde pendejonoteCuando V8 era mala palabranotese intentaba con vos lavarnos cerebrosnoteFuiste azota del jazz-rocknotereggae, pop, new wave, modernonoteHoy cantás tus amoríosnotecon fanfarria de rockeronoteYo que nunca compartí tu pose Stonenotevoy a deschavarte el juegonoteSos veleta de la moda y no me asombranoteque mañana amanezcas metalero.note
- In V8, the songs "Tiempos Metálicos" and "Brigadas Metálicas" (Metal Times and Metal Squads) are Take Thats towards the conformist hippism of earlier eras.
- Hermetica has "Dejá De Robar", ("Stop Stealing") directed towards Walter Giardino, (Rata Blanca's leader founder and guitarist, and hilariously former V8 guitarist) and "Buscando Razón", ("Finding Reason") a song towards some artist which we don't know who is.
- After Hermetica's breakup, two bands formed: Almafuerte, led by Iorio, and Malon, led by the remaining members. On their first records, both bands would fire at each other. Almafuerte with "El amasijo de un gran sueño" ("The death of a big dream") and Malón with "La fábula del avestruz y el jabalí". ("The fable of the ostrich and the boar") Two years later, Malón disbanded, and Almafuerte celebrated it with "Triunfo". ("Victory")
- Swedish band Sabaton has "Metal Machine", which consists entirely of homages to about a dozen famed metal bands — except for calling Metallica's rather reviled album St. Anger "The Ultimate Sin" — itself a reference to Ozzy Osbourne's 1986 album of the same title.
- Sepultura's "Cut Throat" seems to be generally about refusing to give up their musical integrity for money, but a Fun with Acronyms moment towards the end of the song more than hints that it's specifically directed at their former record label:Integrity will free our soul from...Enslavement! Pathetic Ignorant Corporations!
- The particularly spiteful song 'Burning Bridges' by Slaughter is a Take That on Mark Slaughter and Mark Slaughter, Dana Strum, and Bobby Rock's former-boss, Vinnie Vincent. It includes lines like 'So you wanna play another solo, huh? Well not here, pal!' and 'What's that? Charge it to the record company?' Vinnie Vincent lost his record deal from excessive company-credit use.
- In response to Limp Bizkit calling their fans 'fat ugly kids' Slipknot's "I Am Hated" has this line "I'm fat and I'm ugly and proud — so fuck you"
- When Staind collaborated with Fred Durst for a cover of Public Enemy's "Bring The Noise", they altered the original song's reference to Louis Farrakhan, the political activist and leader of the religious movement the Nation Of Islam, changing it from an endorsement to a Take That: "Farrakhan's a prophet, and I think you ought to listen to / what he can say to you" became "Farrakhan's a racist, and I think you ought to listen to / what we can say to you".
- "Hooker with a Penis" from their album Ænima is a brutally honest Take That! toward hypocritical posers who think the band sold out, pointing fingers at them for having grown commercially and taking a step further into capitalism with release of their album Undertow. Maynard James Keenan says to the kid that he's just a Tool for buying the very album the band put effort in to release it to an audience; if he's buying the album, then he's submitting to the very capitalism he's attempting to defect. This is one of the more explicit Tool songs in existence, explaining that "...If I'm the man, then you're the man, and he's the man, as well, so you can point that fucking finger up your ass."
- In the album Ænema, one is fired off to The Church Of Happyology with "Fuck L Ron Hubbard and fuck all his clones."
- The song "Ænema" is a Take That! towards the entire city of Los Angeles.
- To this day, it's still highly debated if the song "Eulogy" is a Take That! towards L Ron Hubbard or Jesus Christ.
- Toxik's album Think This is basically one giant attack piece against television, but in the closer "Time After Time", they call out Geraldo Rivera and the talk show he had in The '80s by name:A source of all the answers
A cause of animosity
DRUGS! and SEX! Tonight on Geraldo!
A morbid curiosity
- Van Halen's OU 812 ("Oh, You Ate One Too?") is reportedly a shot at former singer David Lee Roth's Eat 'Em and Smile. It is rumoured that the previous and following album also fit: DLR's Crazy From the Heat — VH's 5150 (police code for the criminally insane) and VH's For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge followed by DLR's Your Filthy Little Mouth.
- The Velvet Revolver song "Dirty Little Thing" was stated by bassist Duff McKagan as a Take That! to Paris Hilton.
- WASP dedicated their notoriously raunchy song "Harder Faster" to the PMRC, who declared them to be "sexual perverts".
- Yoshiki Hayashi managed one towards his record label in 1991. "Stab Me In The Back" was on his tracklist for the album Jealousy, but he had to rewrite the song not to be about male/male Intercourse with You. The Jealousy rewrite of Stab Me In The Back" is about doing drugs, which was and is an even bigger taboo in Japan than homosexuality.
- Surgical Meth Machine's "Unlistenable", where the lyrics are mainly Al Jourgensen doing a spoken word rant about the state of rock music. Halfway through the song, Sam D'Ambruoso, the other half of the duo, starts asking him about specific bands; Iron Maiden, Lamb of God, and Nickelback, among others, all receive take thats. There are a couple hints that it's not meant to be taken all that seriously: first Al insults his own band, Ministry, then the very last line is "Devo?!? They fuckin' rule!", which segues into the next track, a Cover Version of Devo's "Gates Of Steel".
- A second Nickelback take that occurs in the music video for "I'm Invisible" — at one point Al finds a Nickelback CD in his car, makes a disgusted face, and throws it into the backseat.
- Probably more so than any genre, hip-hop and rap run on this trope. It's the entire point of the "diss" track, most of which are usually hip-hop and dancehall.
- Hopsin's "Ill Mind" series has directly attacked several other hip-hop artists, on top of bemoaning the state of the rap industry as shallow, materialistic, misogynistic, violent crap. "Sag My Pants" was a sarcastic take on this, sung in the same style as said crap, mockingly encouraging violence against women and brainwashing kids to be like the violent, materialistic, mainstream artists, among earnest insults at Drake, Lil Wayne, Soulja Boy, and even Lupe Fiasco. (He later clarified that he was attacking Lupe on his claims that he could skate in the song "Skater".) Lastly, the skit "No Words" on Pound Syndrome is an unambiguous shot at trap, particularly the heavily slurred, extremely processed, and often downright incomprehensible nature of the rapping (though he would probably take issue with even calling it "rapping").
- Eminem has had his fair share of beefs (many of which have since been squashed), and gained a lot of controversy through his huge mainstream hits "My Name Is" and "The Real Slim Shady" thanks to their inclusion of Take Thats against random pop culture artifacts of the time.
- Eminem recorded "I Remember", which was a take that at former House of Pain member Everlast for being mostly a singer on his "Whitey Ford Sings the Blues" album instead of the rapper from his House of Pain (and pre-House of Pain; he was a solo artist before he joined) days. This prompted Everlast to do a diss single about Eminem. Furthermore, Eminem's own mother bizarrely dropped a diss track about him, accusing him of fabricating his past as a victim of her abuse. Eminem's "Cleaning Out the Closet" addresses this, and tells her he is dead to her.
- Insane Clown Posse and Eminem's feud is legendary. Eminem put a skit on The Marshall Mathers LP depicting the Insane Clown Posse giving oral sex to a man; in return, the Insane Clown Posse recorded "Ain't Nothin' But a Bitch Thang", which opened with a skit in which Dr. Dre is performing anal sex with Eminem. The two parties no longer actively feud, and members of ICP's label, Psychopathic Records, frequently associate and collaborate with Eminem's associates D12 (particularly, Bizarre) and King Gordy, who have said that they are Juggalos. Eminem and ICP are not particularly likely to have a similarly friendly relationship, though. Interestingly enough, Eminem was once an ICP fan. At one point, he even wanted the ICP to try and be at a party of his — the entire reason they started feuding is because he asked ICP if they could show up after already printing a poster that said "Featuring appearances from: ICP (maybe)", and ICP felt insulted that he didn't ask them before printing the poster, and told him they would've showed up if he'd asked them first.
- Eminem has...issues...with wife/ex-wife/wife again/ex-wife again Kim, resulting in songs that are sympathetic and loving to songs that are full on, vicious, Take Thats.
- Eminem has numerous songs which are a Take That against himself. A lot of this Self-Deprecation is via his Anti-Role Model Slim Shady character, who is as depraved, stupid and as much of a loser as Eminem feels, but he often does this in Sincerity Mode, too, to undercut a Boastful Rap or just to bleed out on a song for four minutes. The entirety of The Slim Shady LP and Relapse were made, by Word of God, to make fun of himself, and Encore in particular is full of self-loathing Trolling Creator as he attempts to destroy his own legacy while simultaneously demonstrating, via ultra-technical and funny freestyles and mature songwriting, why he still deserves one.
- Eminem had a fairly notable feud with Ja Rule as well, which escalated after Ja Rule insulted Eminem's daughter Hailie in a song.
- Insane Clown Posse parodied the concept of Take That! with "Fuck The World", a Cluster F-Bomb that eventually delves into insulting ridiculously specific targets. In some live versions — specifically, their performance in Woodstock '99 — they rewrote the song for a little bit to diss Eminem. Surprised?
- Cage accused Eminem of stealing his style, and Cage's debut featured numerous Take Thats directed at Em, including "Used to pistol-whip until Shady made it look pussy". Cage later said that his accusations didn't make any sense, considering that the two rappers started out at about the same time, and developed their styles separately in different rap scenes (New York and Detroit, respectably). Their styles are also pretty different, as soon as you get past the fact of them both being white, lyrically-focused horror-rappers with Psychopathic Manchild alter-egos. (In particular, Cage is scarier and more cinematic, while Eminem is Played for Laughs and has a Subverted Kids' Show tone.)
- The Notorious B.I.G. and 2Pac, the frontrunners of the East Coast vs. West Coast feud in the '90s, had a slew of disses fly between their camps after 2Pac was shot in 1994. The most famous tracks from this beef are Big's "Who Shot Ya?" and Pac's "Hit 'Em Up"; the latter is considered by many to be the Trope Codifier for the modern hip-hop diss track. The beef continued until both guys were dead, which led to a push to keep the violence confined to the music..
- 50 Cent, most infamously, in his first single "How to Rob", which took digs at every single popular rapper alive in 1998, including people he actually wanted to rob but felt that it wouldn't result in anything worth getting.
- Also see "Ghetto Q'uran," the song that got him shot. It wasn't a severe Take That!, but it got the attention of the drug kingpin 50 named in it...
- "How to Rob" was basically a joke song, but 50 built his career on more serious beefs (Ja Rule, Fat Joe, the Game, etc.). His decline can be traced to the moment when people started thinking he was better at beefing than rapping.
- Afroman's "Whack Rappers" is a 6:34 minute Take That to many artists, and their audiences.
- Also of note is Jay-Z's "Takeover", specifically, the version he performed on MTV Unplugged with The Roots as his backing band. At the time, Jay was feuding with Nas, and "Takeover" had a whole verse "dedicated" to Nas, as well as one to Prodigy of Mobb Deep. But on the Unplugged version, Jay rapped the verses over The Roots playing the beats of Mobb Deep's and Nas's songs. Specifically, Mobb Deep's "Shook Ones, Part II" and Nas's "N.Y. State of Mind" and "Oochie Wally".note
- Nas immediately fired back with "Ether", with opens with "Fuck Jay-Z", then goes on to attack Jay's street cred and rapping ability in a similar manner. The diss track, painted Jay into a corner and forced him to respond with "Supa Ugly", a freestyle about him boning Nas' baby momma. It was so nasty it prompted a Dude, Not Funny! reaction from Jay's own mom and prompted an apology from him.
- Due to the above, "ethering" has entered the lexicon as shorthand for absolutely destroying someone.
- Black Sheep's "For Doz Dat Slept". It is a three-minute, 40-second long Cluster F-Bomb.
- Ray "Benzino" Scott's reign as editor-in-chief of The Source, a popular hip-hop magazine, included many Take Thats at Eminem and anyone even remotely associated with him. It all came to a head in early 2004 when one issue of the magazine included a sampler CD with old songs where Em made gratuitous use of the N-word, in an effort to turn public opinion against Em and toward Benzino as a "savior of hip-hop music". Didn't work out so well for him, as Benzino's rap career never took off, despite him pushing several of his CDs in the magazine. That, coupled with mismanaged money, controversial "5-mic" reviews for artists associated with him, and a series of tirades against other DJs led to his firing and subsequent banishment from the magazine. A Take That! was later directed at him, as the first issue of The Source under new editor-in-chief Jeremy Miller proudly declared itself "100% Benzino Free!"
- And of course, a Take That! coming from Eminem himself, blasting Benzino to pieces with the single "Nail in the Coffin".
- After Jay-Z was slated to headline the Glastonbury music festival, Oasis' Noel Gallagher complained that "Glastonbury has a tradition of guitar music... I'm not having hip hop at Glastonbury. It's wrong." In response, Jay-Z opened his set by walking onstage strumming a guitar and singing a hilariously off-key rendition of "Wonderwall" before launching into "99 Problems". Making this particular Take That especially ironic is the fact that the crowd seized on this as a big sing-along moment, turning a sly, ambiguously hostile retort against Gallagher into a huge crowd-pleasing moment. Doubly ironic is that he managed to turn one of the original lyrics into a sarcastic swipe at Noel.
- Just let Public Enemy rap about why racial stereotypes are ubercrap nowadays in this video.
- Professor Elemental's "Fighting Trousers" is a somewhat satirical attack at Mr B the Gentleman Rhymer, perhaps due to the fact that the two are the faces of Chap-hop as a whole and explicitly due to the idea that Mr B was a parody of Chap Hop. It includes lines such as:"I've got super producers and fans that play me, you've got a Grandad's moustache and a Ukelele.""Sold out to Coca-cola, used for a trend, that means you're banned from using a pen."
- Referring to Mr B being the brain behind the infamous "Eat my goal" phenomenon and subsequent song "Mr B's World Cup Anthem" in which he blasts the corporate nature of football and suggests we should celebrate when the footballers are out of the country, making him seem something of a hypocrite though the intent may have been an apology.
- If Reggaeton can be included under the Rap umbrella, Puerto Rican group Calle 13. It seems that they can't get an album without Residente, their singer and lyricist, dissing someone every two verses on each track. Notorious were "Tango del Pecado", against those who were not pleased with Residente dating a former Miss Universe; and "Que lloren", a take that to Reggaeton singers in general and Reggaeton diva Ivy Queen in particular.
- Killer Mike's "Reagan" lays into Oliver North, privatized prisons, the War on Drugs, the cops, and his fellow rappers' materialism, but, of course, Ronald Reagan is at the top of his shit-list. Really, how can anybody think otherwise when he says he's glad Reagan's dead and implies Reagan was the Anti-Christ?
- German rap group known as Kopfnussmusik made a four-minute take that against former Borrusia Dortmund star Mario Götze, because of his transfer to Bayern. Götze sued them.
- Pitbull's "Welcome to Dade County" is this to Lil Wayne, who went on a scathing rant about the Miami Heat and some of their core players in early 2013. In the last bit of the song, Pit even calls out Wayne how disrespectful it was when Miami showed respect to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. Made even funnier when you find out that Lil Wayne lived in Miami for a little while after Hurricane Katrina.
- Promising rapper Canibus got into a beef with LL Cool J which began after Canibus appeared as a cameo on LL Cool J's song "4,3,2,1" where the green rapper mentioned borrowing LL's mic tattoo from his arm. The rap veteran saw this as an insult and responded with a Take That! against Canibus during his verse on the same track. After fans found out, Canibus quickly responded with a hard counter called "Second Round K.O" which featured the heavyweight boxing legend Mike Tyson. Despite mostly positive responses, LL Cool J was seen as a rap pioneer above challenging and the good diss track actually backfired. The rap veteran then finished him off with a strong response called "The Ripper Strikes Back" which was a sequel to the original "Ripper" track which was a Take That towards Kool Moe Dee back in the 1980s. But that's another story.
- MC Hammer's "Break Em Off Somethin Proper" from "The Funky Headhunter" was a Take That! to all the rap artists who had mocked him for his success and his Lighter and Softer image.
- It should be noted though that the line he sampled "What you say Hammer? Proper?" came from A Tribe Called Quest's Check The Rhyme, which has a its own take that on MC Hammer with the full lyric "What you say Hammer? Proper? Rap is not Pop. If you called that than stop."
- El-P kicked off a feud with Demigodz (largely just Esoteric) on his guest verse on Aesop Rock's "We're Famous" after Esoteric called his music "nerd rap", basically calling him an irrelevant never-was who was stuck in the 90s and going nowhere with his music, while El-P was the head of a major underground label and managed to be relevant and successful because he dared to be unconventional. In return, Esoteric fired back with "Mercy Killing" (which also targeted Vast Aire of Cannibal Ox), the first verse of which accused El-P of making hip-hop for hipsters and not even really being part of the hip-hop scene and insinuated that he wasn't as comfortable enough in his status as he wanted to appear if he was taking the time to respond to Eso's diss. After this, El-P finished with the absolutely brutal "7700 Years to Date", pointing out that 7L & Esoteric sold less copies of Dangerous Connection in a year than Aesop Rock sold on his first day with Bazooka Tooth, that El had just played a sold-out show in Boston that Eso didn't even bother showing up to, and that Eso was probably still around despite the fact that he clearly wasn't making any money off of his music solely because he had a rich dad that he could sponge off of. He did give him credit for one thing, however — introducing fellow Boston rapper Mr. Lif to El, who later signed him to Def Jux.
- iLOVEFRIDAY's "Mia Khalifa" was a take that towards the former adult film star of the same name, in response to a supposed tweet she made about member Smoke Hajabi being "disrespectful" by smoking a joint while in traditional Muslim garb. That comment would have been hypocritical on Khalifa's part, as she controversially wore Muslim garb in adult videos, but she never actually said it — the group mistook a meme for an actual tweet.
- Lil Nas X's "Montero (Call Me By Your Name)", its music video in particular, is a screw-you to conservative Christian homophobia, featuring a surreal version of the Garden of Eden where the protagonist makes out with an anthromorphization of the Biblical snake (played by himself), before being denied entrance to Heaven and then wilingly taking a very long stripper pole down into Hell, where he then gets freaky with Satan (also played by himself) before snapping his neck and taking his crown for himself. In other words, if he's supposedly going to Hell for being gay, might as well Refuge in Audacity as he does so.Opening narration: In life, we hide the parts of ourselves we don't want the world to see. We lock them away; we tell them no. We banish them. But here, we don't. Welcome to Montero.
- A surprisingly sweet and gentle form of Take That occurs in the Pet Shop Boys song "The Night I Fell in Love", in which they parody the homophobia inherent in many of Eminem's songs and public comments by writing the story of a starstruck young fan who has a homosexual affair with an Eminem-like hiphop star. So how did Eminem react? Well, he made a music video in which he ran the Pet Shop Boys over with his car. Touchy.
- This isn't the first time the PSB have done a Take That at another artist. "How Can You Expect To Be Taken Seriously?" pokes fun at the likes of "activist bands", mainly U2. They had a much more positive reaction to their Take That! than Eminem did.
- Speaking of U2, in the cover of "Where the Streets Have No Name", Neil Tennant sings the song with no vocal exertion or stress, in contrast to the epic intro and dramatic vocal delivery of the original. Apparently, this was done to point out U2's over-the-top self indulgence. Additionally, at the transition between "Where the Streets Have No Name" and "Can't Take My Eyes off You", Tennant sings the two lines one after the other, with no change in pitch — pointing out the similarities in the two songs. After hearing the cover version, Bono put out a statement saying, "What have we done to deserve this?"
- "Miserablism" is often interpreted as a swipe at Morrissey.
- This isn't the first time the PSB have done a Take That at another artist. "How Can You Expect To Be Taken Seriously?" pokes fun at the likes of "activist bands", mainly U2. They had a much more positive reaction to their Take That! than Eminem did.
- P!nk's "Stupid Girls". Itty bitty doggies, fake blonde hair, and Valley Girl phrases... The video is even more obvious about it, with send-ups of various "celebrities'" night-vision sex tapes and traffic woes.
- "Hooker" appears to be about Christina Aguilera.
- Hilary Duff's song "Dignity", from the 2007 album of the same name, also takes a shot at the same subject as P!nk, and/or the travails of the likes of Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan, Nicole Richie and Britney Spears (In early 06-late 08), and the scandalous jet-set lives of other Hollywood starlets. Other songs from the album allude to her father's infidelities (Gypsy Woman, Stranger) and her broken relationship with Good Charlotte's Joel Madden (Happy, Outside Of You), as well as a stalker who she won a restraining order against(Dreamer, Between You And Me)
- Two of Boyzone's members once covered the Milli Vanilli song "Girl You Know It's True", and filled it with shout-outs and attacks on most of the popular British acts at the time. Yes, including Take That (Band).
- With such memorable lines as, "I hope you choke/On your Bacardi and Coke", Robbie Williams' "Karma Killer" is a spectacular, vicious Take That! against... someone. Rumor has it that it's about the manager of... wait for it... Take That.
- The Destiny's Child single "Survivor" was seen as a big Take That! to previous group members LeToya Ruckett and LaTavia Roberson, who were secretly dropped from the group over problems with their manager, and who were still involved with a lawsuit over the ousting at the time. While the remaining members publicly denied it was a response to anything going on in real life, it's also known that they were legally required to not mention all the strife in public. They got sued over the song anyway.
- And where did the first lawsuit come from? It was a response to a previous Take That! in which said management replaced the two girls with new singers for the "Say My Name" video, as a response to complaints from the two girls about being the Unfavorites.
- Billy Joel's hit We Didn't Start the Fire is, aside from being a great song to play for a history class, a Take That! at those who blame all the world's problems on the Baby Boomers, or more generally any particular group.
Well, they showed you a statue, told you to prayThey built you a temple and locked you awayBut they never told you the price that you payThe things that you might have done.
- His song She's Always a Woman sounds like a gentle love song and is often taken as a dedication to a modern, liberated woman; but the lyrics describe the subject as a conniving, manipulative Gold Digger. Given that Joel admits to writing the song about his ex-wife, it's likely he had the less innocent interpretation in mind ...
- Word of God, according to a video interview Billy recently gave, is that it is Billy addressing a list of observations and complaints a Strawman chauvinistic speaking partner finds to be perplexing and frustrating about his strong-willed female partner, then saying he has no problem with the female's behavior, that it's the other guy's problem, defending her by saying "she's always a woman" to Billy.
- Joel's 1993 song The Great Wall of China is a rather straightforward Take That to his ex-manager Frank Weber. It's practically nothing but a lyrical beatdown. "Your role was protective, your soul was too defective/Some people just don't have a heart to be broken".
- One of his songs, "Zanzibar," was even updated with a Take That to Pete Rose. The original version, from 1978's 52nd Street, were "Rose, he knows he's such a credit to the game/But the Yankees grab the headlines every time." The version from 2005's 12 Gardens Live — more than a decade following Rose's tax-evasion scandal — updates the lyric to "Rose, he knows he'll never reach the Hall of Fame/But the Yankees grab the headlines every time."
- "The Entertainer" from Streetlife Serenade is a diatribe against his record company for shortening the six-minute-long "Piano Man" to "3:05" to appeal to radio listeners, pressuring Billy to follow up the Piano Man album with another hit album in short notice, and to the music business in general. Granted, Billy was at the time already fed up with living in Los Angeles and the Hollywood lifestyle at the time. He would return to his native New York in time for the following album, Turnstiles, reflecting on this move throughout the album.
- "Only The Good Die Young" has some less than flattering words to say about Catholicism, including outright accusing it of limiting peoples' life experiences:
- His song She's Always a Woman sounds like a gentle love song and is often taken as a dedication to a modern, liberated woman; but the lyrics describe the subject as a conniving, manipulative Gold Digger. Given that Joel admits to writing the song about his ex-wife, it's likely he had the less innocent interpretation in mind ...
- Michael Jackson has a ton of these.
- Tabloids and other sensational forms of celebrity journalism are arguably his most common target. 1987's Bad featured the first of these, "Leave Me Alone", accompanied by an animated music video parodying headlines about him and depicting MJ himself as a theme park. 1995's HIStory: Past, Present, and Future -- Book I, released after the first round of child molestation accusations, gave us several more examples, including "Scream", "Money", and the aptly-named "Tabloid Junkie". His final studio album before his death, 2001's Invincible, also featured the song "Privacy", complete with the sounds of paparazzi cameras flashing.
- Notably, Thomas Sneddon, then district attorney for Santa Barbara County, California, is allegedly the subject of another song from HIStory, "D.S." Sneddon led the investigation of the first child molestation allegations in 1993, and would go on to lead the 2003 investigation as well, making some believe he had a personal vendetta against MJ. In what is widely believed to be a song littered with Lawyer Friendly Cameos, MJ sings about a "cold man" named "Dom S. Sheldon", whom he describes as a self-centred white supremacist out to get him "dead or alive", as well as possibly being in league with the CIA and/or FBI.
- The Monkees had a rarely heard unedited version of a song called "Mommy and Daddy" which was a nasty Take That! at their audience's parents.
- Justin Timberlake expressed his dismay at being cheated on, and who being who he was, and being with Britney Spears naturally did a couple take that's straight at her, For public consumption. These include but are not limited too, "Cry Me A River", "What Goes Around", "Last Night", "Worthy Of", "Never Again", "Still On My Brain", "Another Song", etcetera.
- Britney Spears herself did the odd Take That! against the aforementioned Mr. Timberlake, around 02-05, for her Original Doll album, so they're unreleased. "Dramatic" and "Guilty" both point out that he is not the Prince Charming he may think of himself to be: "You Neglected Me" (Guilty), "Go Run To Your Mother" (Dramatic). She also did "Look Who's Talk" These are demos/unreleased but worthy to be noted.
- "Piece Of Me" seems to be directed at the tabloids who hounded her in the mid-to-late 2000s during her Creator Breakdown, as is "If U Seek Amy".
- Duran Duran's "Undergoing Treatment", the closing song off their 1997 album Medazzaland, was a gentle Take That at the music critics and press who savaged them in the past and who were largely responsible for their waning popularity, "resign[ing]" the band "to the mid-price section".
- Jessie J's "Who's Laughing Now" is not exactly subtle in it being a Take That! to all the schoolmates who picked on her as a child and now pretend to be her biggest friends.
- Melanie Brown, formerly of the Spice Girls, released a song called "Tell Me" that was a direct Take That! at her ex-husband, including the line "... but all you loved was Mel B's money".
- She's not the only Spice Girl to have done this. Geri Halliwell's 'You're In A Bubble' was a Take That! to Melanie B. It's also been speculated that Victoria Beckham's 'Whatcha Talkin' 'Bout' is a Take That! to Melanie C distancing herself from the Spice Girls.
- Miley Cyrus did a song called Robot on her third album about Moral Guardians, her own people and how much pressure she has had to be perfect in her day to day life since she was 12.
- Demi Lovato also preemptively wrote about this on La La Land on their debut.
- Selena Gomez + The Scene recorded a similar song with "Falling Down", at least toward Hollywood in general.
- Girls Aloud's "Hoxton Heroes" was a snarky song mocking the British indie scene, or rather the hipsters in the scene who were more obsessed with flaunting their "indie credibility" and fame connections, rather than being musicians. The song was originally slated to be on their album Tangled Up, but Executive Meddling forced it to become a b-side to their single Can't Speak French.
- Frankie Goes to Hollywood, it seems, were unhappy about 'Relax' being banned from BBC Radio for apparently promoting homosexuality. How does their 12" version of 'The Power of Love' begin? An impersonationnote of Mike Read, the man who got the song in question banned, introducing 'Relax' then saying that he wouldn't play the song due to the cover being obscene and walking out of a radio booth. Apparently, it's a spot on impression.And in at #35, which you can guess the next one, it's Frankie Goes To Hollywood with 'Relax'... Hey, I've just taken a look at this cover. I just looked at the cover. I think it's obscene! This record is absolutely obscene. I'm not going to play this, you know. No, I'm sure that I'm not going to play this. Thank you and goodbye. *Door closing*
- In Sting's song "St. Augustine in Hell", when The Devil is listing the types of people that inhabit hell, the last listed is "music critics".
- Tears for Fears' 1989 single "Sowing the Seeds of Love" is meant to evoke a sound and lyrics in the style of the "Peace and Love" and "Flower Power" of the 1960s, and as such it has several lyrics against war and politics, a good example being the phrase "Politician Granny". On the other hand, the song does contain a rather petty non-political take that as well: "Kick outt The Stylenote , bring back The Jam!!!"
- Zazie, a french singer, has quite a few songs dedicated to serious subjects, in which she calls out people over their behavior:
"J'étais là, et je n'ai rien fait." ("I was there, and I did nothing.")
- "Tout le monde" ("Everyone") is about people's names, from all origins. The song itself is rather simple, since the lyrics are mainly a list of names, with the title of the song as the chorus (to be accurate, the chorus is "Tout le monde il est beau", which can be roughly translated as "Everyone is beautiful"). The catch? One of the line of the song is "Quitte à faire de la peine à Jean-Marie" ("Even if it saddens Jean-Marie"). Jean-Marie Le Pen is a french right-wing and nationalist politician well-known for his racism. Thus, the song spreads a message of tolerance and takes a jab at Jean-Marie and (his) racism. The song ends with the following lyrics: "Tout le monde il est grand — Assez grand pour tout le monde" ("The world is big — big enough for everyone").
- In "J'étais là" ("I was there"), she calls out someone who witnessed people in distress and how the world is getting worse before their very eyes, but who ultimately didn't do anything to save them or change the world around them. The song calls out the apathy in everyone.
"You see, I'm not a man. I am the king of illusion. At heart, may I be forgiven. I am the king, the king of fools. It is I, the master of fire, the game master, the world's master and see what I've done with it! A frozen Earth, a scorched Earth, men's Earth than men have forsaken! I am a man backed into a corner, like a freak of nature. On this Earth, with no reason, I'm running in circles, running in circles. I am a man, fully aware of the horror of my condition. For my sentence, my punishment, I'm running in circles, running in circles..."
- "Je suis un homme" ("I am a man") is a song directed at humanity as whole, in which Zazie drily points out how men are destroying eachother and their environment, content with their meaningless lives and repeating over and over the same destructive behavior. This song's message is driven home by its video clip, in which indifferent white people visit a museum full of always increasing numbers, showing how many people are dying every day from hunger, how many people don't have access to potable water, how many forests burned, carbon dioxyde emissions, and so on.
- Chris Brown made quite a few Take That! songs towards Rihanna. The most popular one is the song "Deuces" which is about him forgetting about the Pop Star and moving on with his new girlfriend, Karrueche Tran. Subverted, however, as soon afterwards he would release another single called "She Ain't You". Chris Brown then left Miss Tran to date Rihanna again, only to end the relationship again when Rihanna wanted to get married. Interestingly, both songs were off the same album, F.A.M.E
- Lindsay Lohan did a Take That! towards her own father with the song "Daughter To Father" from "A Little More Personal", the music video for the song also featured her sister Ali.
- Taylor Swift:
- Taylor Swift has made a career out of Take That! songs about her ex-boyfriends.
- "Bad Blood" is widely seen as a Take That! toward Katy Perry, specifically for hiring dancers away from her tour.
- "Mean" is also seen as a Take That! toward critics (whom she does not specifically name) who claimed she could not sing nor belonged in the country music genre.
- "Look What You Made Me Do" is this to Spotify, Perry, Kim Kardashian, Kanye West and her exes Calvin Harris and Tom Hiddleston. It's also seen as this to fans who missed the "old Taylor" (as in from her self-titled debut album to Red).
- You don't need to be an ex or a friend to discover that messing with Taylor Swift is not advised.
- Paramore's "Ain't It Fun" is a Take That! to people who think living on their own is all fun and games, and that it's easy living alone, but then when it happens you face reality and realize the responsibility that it comes with. And that you can't always have your folks for everything (Don't go crying, to your mama/'Cause you're on your own, in the real world). Interestingly, though the lyrics are all in the second person, Hayley Williams has said she wrote the song about herself: She had recently moved from Nashville to Los Angeles and wanted to remind herself that moving out wasn't going to solve all her problems.
- The video for Katy Perry's "Last Friday Night" includes Rebecca Black, in a Take That! towards people who unfairly attacked the teenaged Black for her infamous song "Friday". When Kathy Beth Terry, annoyed by the noise from a party at Black's house next door, comes over to complain, Black invites her in, gives her a sexy makeover and they play a dance video game together. When Kathy Beth tries to blame Black (who appears as herself) for her own wild behavior later, Kathy Beth's parents don't buy it, and reply: "Rebecca Black is a good girl." There is also a friendly Take That! to saxophonist Kenny G., who performs on the song and appears in the video.
- "Swish Swish" (featuring Nicki Minaj) is widely seen as this towards Taylor Swift's "Bad Blood", which was aimed towards Perry.
- Christina Aguilera's "F.U.S.S." is a Take That! toward producer Scott Storch, with whom she had a falling-out before releasing Back to Basics. Three guesses what it stands for.
- Clairity's "Velcro" has the line "Who the hell's Tiesto?", aimed at the sold-out-to-mainstream EDM/trance DJ-producer.
- The Swedish Rock/Pop singer Magnus Uggla often incorporate this trope into his various songs. The song "För Kung Och Fosterland" (For King And Country) for example may sound like some patriotic song title but is in fact used with heavy irony as the song satirizes consumer society.
- "Hook" by Blues Traveller pokes fun of how popular songs can be made out of anything as long as they're sung a certain way and have a catchy tune. Most listeners will probably ignore the meaning anyway. Naturally, it also has a Misaimed Fandom of people who ignore the lyrics.
- PSY's "Gangnam Style" makes fun of Seoul's Gangnam district, infamous for Nouveau Riche types who spend their money on expensive stuff just to show off their wealth and wannabes who try to look rich. That lounge chair that PSY sits on, apparently at a beach at first? He's actually at a kids' playground. Those babes he walks with in the fake snow? They're not terribly pleased by it, and try to get it out of their faces. He meets a love interest... on a subway train. And he brags about his wealth while on the toilet.
- There's a theory that the line in Velvet Underground's "Sweet Jane" about "evil mothers" who "tell you that everything is just dirt" is an insult aimed at Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention. Although it would be a bit hypocritical for Lou Reed, of all people, to attack any other musician for having negative lyrics.
- A weird case: The Clash's song "London Calling" included the line "now don't look to us / All that phoney Beatlemania has bitten the dust". At first, you'd probably think this is a dig at The Beatles. Then, you'd probably think it's actually a dig at Wings (whom had just broken up). Then, you may think it was about the then current Broadway stage production "Beatlemania", slogan: "Not The Beatles, But an Incredible Simulation."note The best (or worst, depending on your POV) part? The line from London Calling was actually a comment by the band about the sudden burst of popularity of the punk scene having died down, thus being a Take That not towards The Beatles, Wings, or Beatlemania, but rather towards the fans who just hopped onto the band's bandwagon because they were the next big thing.
- The Bowling for Soup song 1985 is a song lamenting the changing pop culture from the band's youth, and it features lines like "Music was still on MTV" and "And when did Ozzy Become an actor" obvious digs at... Well Duh. Though whether they were aware of it or not, Ozzy's first acting gig was a bit part in the cult horror film Trick Or Treat that was released in 1986.
- "Those Dumb Punk Kids" by Jello Biafra with the Melvins is a very unsubtle take that to his former Dead Kennedys bandmates, who had sued him for royalties, then reunited without him. It was written for their 2004 collaboration Never Breathe What You Can't See, but dealt with issues relating to the trial so directly that it had to be saved for the followup Sieg Howdy! the next year, after the trial had concluded.
- The Melvins themselves had "Laughing With Lucifer At Satan's Sideshow", a take that to their former record label: The lyrics consist entirely of some (possibly faked) phone recordings that evidently demonstrate the kind of correspondence Atlantic Records was giving them ("You should consider yourself lucky, any other major label would've dropped you by now!", "Well, we won't do a thing unless the single moves").
- The Ramones had "Censorshit", from Mondo Bizzaro, directed towards the PMRC and Tipper Gore.
- They also had "Bonzo Goes To Bitburg", an obvious dig against Ronald Reagan.
- Green Day's single (and album of the same name) "American Idiot" is basically a series of take thats against America during the Bush Administration.
- Early than that, the song "Jack Ass" off their album Warning is said to be about blink-182. Green Day has never confirmed or denied this.
- "Platypus (I Hate You)" was later stated by Billie Joe Armstrong to be a Take That! against Tim Yohannan, the owner of a prominent punk club the band used to play at, 924 Gilman St. Yohannan, who was an influential taste-maker in the punk scene, banned the group from Gilman's after they got signed to Reprise Records (which inspired the song "86"), and he also launched a smear campaign accusing the band of selling out. Their response? "Platypus".
- The Dead Kennedys "MTV, Get Off the Air" from Frankenchrist consists entirely of Take That directed at MTV and the record industry in general.
- There was also the infamous "Pull My Strings", a huge Take That at both the California Music Awards (which was the only place they ever performed it) and The Knack.
- It says something about the nature of Dead Kennedys Take Thats that "Nazi Punks Fuck Off" is one of the more subtle ones.
- "EMI" by the Sex Pistols from Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols is an attack on a label that rejected them (and ironically purchased the album's label and was responsible for some reissues), while "New York" is one directed at The New York Dolls.
- The New Wave band Graham Parker and the Rumour took a similar shot at their record label, "Mercury Poisoning".
- Johnny Thunders responded to "New York" by putting down the Sex Pistols and especially Malcolm McLaren in "London Boys" — with Paul Cook and Steve Jones in his backup band.
- NOFX's "Blasphemy (The Victimless Crime)", "Best God in Show" and "Leaving Jesusland" go after organized religion in general and the Christian Right in particular.
- Black Flag's "You Bet We've Got Something Personal Against You!" is a take that to former vocalist Keith Morris. Morris had recorded a version of the Black Flag outtake "Don't Care" with The Circle Jerks and claimed sole songwriting credit for it, and the members of Black Flag apparently weren't too happy about it:We know you stole our songYou'll regret ever touching themYou'll regret fucking with our bandYou'll regret everything you've done
- About three decades later, Morris' band Off! had "I Got News For You", which specifically targeted Black Flag guitarist and founder Greg Ginn. It even included the line "You bet I've got something against you too" in reference to the above song.
- Doesn't stop there. Black Flag frontman Henry Rollins did a vicious Take That! to Electronic Music in a comedy routine. This led to two EDM producers sampling this routine in their own songs as a Take That! back at him; the first being "Play the Record Again" by AC Slater, and the second being "Rave Review" by SKisM.
- "Tiny Town" by The Dead Milkmen is kind of a Take That! in and of itself, as it's basically a Villain Song about a town of bigoted rednecks. However, there's also a somewhat obscure take that to Boston Hardcore Punk band The F.U.'s — the second F.U.'s album, My America, caused massive backlash against the band in the increasingly political hardcore punk scene due to lyrics with a perceived right wing conservative message. Thus explaining the following lines:'Cause we hate blacks, and we hate JewsWe hate punks, but we love the F.U.'s
You'll dance to anything by any bunch of stupid Europeans who come over herewith their big hairdos intent on taking our money instead of giving yourcash, where it belongs, to a decent American artist like myself!
- Instant Club Hit (You'll Dance to Anything) was basically a 3 minute, 37 second Take That! to electronica, dance music, new wave, the second British Invasion, art school kids, bohemians, and what would, in the 2000s, be called "hipsters", eventually culminating in the line
- Bomb the Music Industry!'s "Congratulations, John, For Joining Every Time I Die" is a mocking, sarcastic congratulation from the singer to a band mate that he thought was going to leave the band for a more popular one. This may have become a bit awkward when said band mate didn't actually leave.
- Compare the Against Me! song ‘’I was a Teenage Anarchist’’ with the Rise Against song ‘’Architects’’
- Against Me!: Do you remember when you were young? And you wanted to set the world on fire?
- Rise Against: Do you remember when you were young? And you wanted to set the world on fire? Well I still am, and I still do!
- Darkbuster's "I Hate The Unseen" is a Take That! to The Unseen, another Boston punk band. "Lilith Fair" is one to the music festival of the same name, calling out both specific artists who have played the tour note and their fans.
- "Peaches" by The Stranglers carries a disguised Take That!! directed at Joe Jackson's hit "Is She Really Going Out with Him?", in which Jackson's nerd-persona song about not being able to get a girlfriend in the face of competition from unworthy thick sex-obsessed gorillas is subverted by the Stranglers, who use Jackson's words in the pursuit of sleazy sex rather than romance — in other words, this is the sex-obsessed gorilla's comeback.Jackson sings:Look over there! (Where?) There, there comes Jeannie with her new boyfriend....while the Stranglers singLook over there! (Where?) There! Is she trying to get out that clitoris?
- When guitarist Brett Gurewitz left Bad Religion on bad terms, both sides took musical potshots at each other. Bad Religion would preform "Stranger Than Fiction" (which was written by Brett) replacing the lyric "I wanna know why Hemmingway cracked" with "I wanna know why Gurewitz cracked" or "I wanna know where Brett gets his crack". On the other side, Brett wrote the song "Hate You", which was dedicated to Bad Religion bassist Jay Bentley. One wonders whether there was an amount of sheepishness from multiple parties when Brett rejoined a few years later.
- The Vandals' "Aging Orange" is a Take That! to fellow California punk band Agent Orange. Agent Orange's Mike Palm had accused The Offspring of ripping off the guitar solo from Agent Orange's "Bloodstains" for the main riff of their hit "Come Out And Play". The Vandals' song ridicules him for this, pointing out that the parts only sound similar because they're in Phrygian mode and calling the accusations an act of a bitter has-been trying to get money and free publicity. note
- Another notable take that is "Choosing Your Masters", which mocks MTV's "Rock The Vote" campaign. The song makes the argument that MTV's audience, consisting of "the world's biggest losers", is too unintelligent to make informed voting decisions, and that "...there ought to be a law / if you can sit through a Silverchair video, you shouldn't be allowed to vote at all". Other specific artists mentioned in such a light include Stone Temple Pilots, Blind Melon, and The Rollins Band.
- Government Issue had "Rock And Roll Bullshit", which entirely consisted of take that's to other artists. In the first verse there are some gibes you'd more or less expect coming from an early '80s Hardcore Punk band — "Van Halen gives me a pain / and Supertramp gives me a cramp". The second verse is more interesting for denigrating older punk bands because They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: "I used to listen to The Clash / now they suck like all the trash / The Ramones used to be a hit / now they're just a pile of shit". Keep in mind the song was released in 1981, when the most recent albums by the latter two artists were out-of-character — Ramones' Pleasant Dreams (1981) sounded more like Power Pop than punk note , while The Clash's Sandinista!! (1980) was total Genre Roulette.
- Weekend Nachos has made a lot of these songs over the years, but most of them have been aimed at unspecified people or subcultures as a whole (mostly bros and crusties). "Hometown Hero", on the other hand, is a very venomous attack on Pete Wentz that insults him for abandoning his friends from his hardcore days in favor of embracing the celebrity lifestyle, then attempting to re-integrate himself like nothing had happened after Fall Out Boy went on hiatus. The lines "you reached your peak/at twenty-three" is the most directly identifying line (he was the only member who was 23 when Take This to Your Grave was released), and between Hurley's run with the well-respected metalcore/crust act Enabler and the guest appearances of Stump and Trohman on Worthless (the album that "Hometown Hero" came from), there's no one else who it could be.
- NOFX's "Kill Rock Stars" is one towards Kathleen Hanna, painting her as a Straw Feminist, pointing out the irony that someone signed to a label called Kill Rock Stars could be described as a rock star, and mocking an incident in which Hanna was physically attacked by Courtney Love ("I wish I could have seen Courtney / demonstrate some real misogyny").
- The last verse of "Deceptacon" by Hanna's post-Bikini Kill group Le Tigre is often seen as a response, alluding to the NOFX song "Linoleum":You bought a new vanThe first year of your bandYou're cool andI hardly want to say"Not" because I'm so boredThat I'd be entertained even by a stupid fuckingLinoleum floor, linoleum floor,Your lyrics are dumb like a linoleum floorI'll walk on itI'll walk all over you
- Decades later, NOFX would release "Linewleum", a new version of "Linoleum" with lyrics about deciding to retire "Linoleum" itself from live performances — as a backhanded compliment, the lyrics mention how "it's in the best Le Tigre song".
- The last verse of "Deceptacon" by Hanna's post-Bikini Kill group Le Tigre is often seen as a response, alluding to the NOFX song "Linoleum":
- Hardcore Punk group Poison Idea released an EP titled Ian MacKaye, where the cover image was a black and white photo of a man spreading his butt cheeks (albeit censored with black bars) — the idea being of course to depict MacKaye as a literal "asshole".
- The entire song "Morrissey Rides a Cockhorse" by the Warlock Pinchers is a big middle finger to Morrissey of The Smiths.
- The Tony Danza Tapdance Extravaganza made the topic of "Rudy x3" known right from the get-go:"You ever had a person in your life, like a so-called 'friend', that every chance they had to do something malicious behind your back, they did? Yeah, well, this goes out to them. You know who you are."
- Cult Leader definitely wrote "God's Lonely Children" as a shot at Jon Parkin, their vocalist from when they were Gaza, with the message being "Gaza was our band that you ruined for all of us because you're an asshole, so we cut our losses and started a new band that's automatically better because you're not in it", while "Skin Crawler" may or may not be another shot at him and more specifically the rape allegations that were the last straw with him.
- XForgiveness DeniedX made a limited-run shirt featuring the mugshot of a fan who was arrested for driving drunk on the wrong side of the highway for ten miles, who happened to be spotted wearing a shirt of theirs at the show she was attending earlier that night (and was drinking heavily at, despite her regular claims of being straight-edge).
- The music video for Ted Leo & The Pharmacist's "Bottled In Cork" music video mocks Green Day's American Idiot Broadway musical, set up with a pre-video skit in which a band meeting is interrupted by a man who convinces them to launch a musical based on their album that "cheapens what you do" and "embarrasses everyone involved", but will also make them all rich. It can be seen as just mocking rock musicals / Jukebox Musicals in general, but the set design, choreography, and costuming of the musical-within-a-music-video all look like a deliberately chintzy parody of American Idiot. The actual lyrics have absolutely nothing to do with Green Day or rock musicals, however.
- My Chemical Romance frontrunner Gerard Way on the song "Vampire Money" in their album Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, written in response to them rejecting an offer to write a song for the Twilight films:"That's why the song 'Vampire Money' is on there, because there's a lot of people chasing that fucking money. Twilight? A lot of people around us were like, 'Please, for the love of God, do this fucking movie.' But we'd moved on."
- The Beatles had several in their collective and solo careers:
- "Revolution" (accredited to Lennon/McCartney) is a Take That! to leftist revolutionaries who were advocating a more violent means to their ends. The line that goes "But when you talk about destruction / Don't you know that you can count me out" rather spells that out.
- However, this is diluted in the acoustic version on the The White Album when, after Lennon sings "Don't you know that you can count me out", he suddenly adds "in!"
- Another one from the same period, "Sexy Sadie", was originally titled "Maharishi", and was a brutal Take That to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, whom Lennon had come to view as manipulative and hypocritical. After some intra-band discussion Lennon decided to make it about a fictional girl instead, but he didn't bother to change the lyrics too much.
- "And Your Bird Can Sing" from Revolver is frequently interpreted as a swipe at The Rolling Stones' Mick Jagger, whose "bird" (girlfriend) at the time was singer Marianne Faithfull.
- Lennon's "Hey Bulldog" has been interpreted by at least one critic as an ambiguously affectionate Take That to McCartney, but that didn't stop McCartney from enthusiastically joining in with the production. The same can be said for "You Can't Do That", which the same critic views as being an assertion by Lennon of his leadership of the band — it was written at a time when McCartney was increasingly being viewed as the co-leader.
- John Lennon's solo song "How Do You Sleep?" from John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band is basically an extended "screw you" to his former songwriting partner Paul McCartney, in which he denounces everything McCartney ever did as worthless crap. It was written in response to a slight on McCartney's album Ram (see "Too Many People" below).
- Lennon also wrote "Steel and Glass" in a similar vein; it addresses a former business manager in less-than-favourable terms.
- McCartney, in turn, wrote one of his early Wings hits, "Silly Love Songs", after Lennon declared that those were the only good songs written by McCartney during the Beatles era.
- "Too Many People" takes a couple obvious shots at Lennon and Yoko Ono. The album on which it appears, Ram, has a back-cover photograph of one beetle mounting another from the rear (draw your own conclusions). In fact, Ram is widely regarded in Beatles fan circles as McCartney's "break-up" album, where he takes shots at *everyone*.
- George Harrison had some of these as well:
- "Sue Me, Sue You Blues" and "This Song" are Take Thats to the people who successfully sued him for allegedly plagiarizing the song "He's So Fine" while writing "My Sweet Lord". The music video for the latter song shows Harrison in a courtroom, stating his case through the song.
- There's also "Only a Northern Song" from Yellow Submarine, a swipe at Lennon and McCartney's publishing company for cheating him out of royalties for his early songs.
- Also, there's a lot of speculation about what "Wah-Wah" really meant. Other popular theories besides sticking it to the Beatles (Paul in particular) are giving up his drug use and taking a shot at materialism.
- Harrison gets in another one at Paul in the song "Savoy Truffle" from The White Album, with the line "We all know Ob-La-Di-Bla-Da, but can you tell me where you are?"
- "I Me Mine" from Let It Be and "Run of the Mill" are both widely interpreted as being directed at John and Paul.
- "Devil's Radio" and "Wreck Of The Hesperus" from Cloud Nine take shots at gossip culture and tell-all/smear campaign-driven biographies, in particular Albert Goldman's infamous, John Lennon-slandering The Lives Of John Lennon.
- Ringo Starr's "Back Off Boogaloo" has sometimes been interpreted as being aimed at McCartney. ("Wake up, meathead / Don't pretend that you are dead...")
- "Revolution" (accredited to Lennon/McCartney) is a Take That! to leftist revolutionaries who were advocating a more violent means to their ends. The line that goes "But when you talk about destruction / Don't you know that you can count me out" rather spells that out.
- The Foo Fighters' "Cheer Up, Boys" may be a Take That! to the Emo culture.
- They also did a song called "Stacked Actors", which is a dig at the Los Angeles populace (as Grohl's experience living there was miserablenote ) and Courtney Love in particular.
- Grohl tried to distance, but doesn't hide that "I'll Stick Around" from the debut is a potshot at Love. He more or less confirmed it years later.
- Grohl has also never explicitly confirmed it, but it's suspected that "Let It Die" is also directed at Love for her role in Kurt's death.
- The Stone Temple Pilots song "Hollywood B*tch", according to singer Scott Weiland, is directed at Courtney Love, with whom he used to do drugs.
- Another Stone Temple Pilots song Take That!: "Too Cool Queenie".
- Courtney supposedly ruined the friendship between Tori Amos and Trent Reznor, so they responded with "Professional Widow", and "Starfuckers Inc." respectively.
- "Bruise Violet" by Babes in Toyland is a Take That! to Love, singer Kat Bjelland's former friend, for allegedly stealing the kinderwhore look from her. The video also features a Kat look-alike chasing a Courtney look alike up a flight of stairs and strangling her after seeing the band's entire audience dressed in the exact same kinderwhore style.
- Courtney herself has gotten in on this with the song "Rock Star," directed towards the Riot Grrrl movement. Not surprising, as her late husband Kurt Cobain had dated Tobi Vail, drummer for Bikini Kill, the most famous band of the movement.
- Primus's "Coattails of a Dead Man" is a particularly vicious Take That! directed at Courtney.
- Stone Sour's "Come What(ever) May" is a Take That! to George H. W. Bush.
- The second verse of David Bowie's "Life on Mars?" from Hunky Dory, released right after John Lennon's "Working Class Hero" from John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band, contains the lines "And the workers have struck for fame/'Cause Lennon's on sale again." In live shows, this would often be accompanied by a half-hearted Black Panther salute. (Three years later, Bowie and Lennon worked togther on the Young Americans album. Eighteen years later, as part of the Hard Rock group Tin Machine, Bowie did a Cover Version of "Working Class Hero".)
In "Teenage Wildlife", against a musical backdrop that owed much to his song "Heroes", Bowie was variously thought to be taking aim squarely at new wave artists such as Gary Numan, or reflecting on his younger self:A broken-nosed mogul are you
- It was also rumored that the song "Space Oddity" was a Take That! to the failed British space program.
- At least according to The Other Wiki, in the page documenting his 1980 Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps) album:
One of the new wave boys
Same old thing in brand new drag
Comes sweeping into view
As ugly as a teenage millionaire
Pretending it's a whiz-kid world
- Lynyrd Skynyrd's southern-rock classic "Sweet Home Alabama" contained a second verse which took a not-too-subtle jab at Neil Young, who had written one song ("Southern Man") portraying southerners as racist whip-cracking slave-owners, and another ("Alabama") depicting the Yellowhammer State as backward and impoverished. Ironically, Neil Young himself loved the song, wrote a letter to Skynyrd saying so, and one of the members of Skynyrd later wore a Neil Young t-shirt on the cover of the album Street Survivors.
- Not really a Take That war, but more like playful jabs at each other that very considered by anyone not a part of it as Take Thats. Skynyrd, and especially Ronnie van Zant, were huge Neil Young fans, and Young was fond of Skynyrd as well, even offering them the song "Powderfinger". The plane crash got in the way, however.
- Bob Dylan has several of these — most notably "Just Like a Woman" from Blonde on Blonde, and the very unforgiving "Positively 4th Street".
- Not to mention "Like a Rolling Stone" (Highway 61 Revisited), "Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window" (single), "Dirge" (Planet Waves), "Idiot Wind" (Blood on the Tracks), "Cry a While" (Love And Theft),... the put-down song is a bit of Dylan specialty.
- Following the break-up of The Smiths, guitarist Johnny Marr formed a group called Electronic, whose song "Getting Away With It" is a dig at Smiths front-man Morrissey's miserable persona: "I've been walking in the rain just to get wet on purpose/ I've been forcing myself not to forget just to feel worse/ I've been getting away with it all my life".
- The idea of Take That! is explored in the New Radicals' only hit, "You Get What You Give". The song included two distinctly different verses, one criticizing health insurance companies, bankers, and the FDA, and another insulting various musicians. Guess which verse everyone focused on?Fashion shoots with Beck and Hanson
Courtney Love and Marilyn Manson
You're all fakes! Run to your mansions!
Come around, we'll kick your ass in!
- According to lead singer Gregg Alexander, it was an experiment to see which verse critics would focus on. His hypothesis was that they'd focus on the verse about the singers. His hypothesis was proven correct.
- Ironically, Alexander would later write songs for Hanson.
- Finnish rock musician Hector's Jos lehmät osais lentää (If Cows Could Only Fly) is an extremely toxic Take That! on John Lennon's Imagine.
- A classic two-way musician-vs-critic Take That war: Sonic Youth and music critic Robert Christgau had an adversarial relationship in the early-mid '80s, with Christgau panning the New York No Wave icons' first couple albums in the Village Voice, labeling their music "pigfucker music." The band retaliated with the song "Kill Yr Idols", the first line of which was "I don't know why/You wanna impress Christgau/Ah let that shit die/And find out the new goal". Later on, when the band released a live version of the song retitled "I Killed Christgau With My Big Fucking Dick", Christgau actually put it at #25 on his list of top 25 singles for 1985.
- It's worth noting that Thurstoon Moore of Sonic Youth and Robert Christgau have since sorted out their differences, and Christgau even gave Sonic Youth's album A Thousand Leaves an A+.
- Christgau was actually in a similar situation a little before that; in Lou Reed's 1978 live album, Take No Prisoners: Live, he goes on a rant taking various jabs at Robert Christgau. Christgau simply gave the album a C+ and thanked Lou Reed for pronouncing his surname correctly.
- Weezer's 2008 #1 (for eleven weeks on Billboard!) hit single "Pork and Beans" is a surprisingly bitter Take That! against the recording industry, railing against the apparent perception that the band can no longer produce hit singles.I'm 'a do the things that I wanna do, I ain't got a thing to prove to you
I eat my candy with the pork and beans, excuse my manners if I make a scene
I ain't gonna wear the clothes that you like, I'm fine and dandy with the me inside
One look in the mirror and I'm tickled pink, I don't give a hoot about what you think.
- When Pete Wentz of Fall Out Boy leaked the screen name of the lead singer of From First to Last, FFtL retaliated by by putting Wentz's home phone number in their song "Chrismassacre".
- Pete did it again at the 2009 MTV Music Video Awards when he leaked the phone number of Cobra Starship's Gabe Suporta though a shirt that had the number hidden under black pieces of tape. Gabe freaked out when Wentz removed the tape and MTV had to be quick about blurring the number. The shirt was latter auctioned off; no word if Cobra Starship has gotten revenge on him or not.
- It's probably easier to mention the Frank Zappa songs that weren't Take Thats at something or other. His concert film/documentary Baby Snakes was a good example of this trope directed at the Warner (Bros.) Records label, making subtle digs at the label whenever he could and often veering into either refuges in audacity or vulgarity.
- Famously, his album We're Only in It for the Money was a Take That! against Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band and hippie culture in general.
- The song Jesus He Knows Me by Genesis, is, essentially, one five-and-a-half-minutes long Take That! against money-grubbing television evangelists.
- The video for "Land of Confusion" isn't particularly subtle about the band's distaste for Ronald Reagan, using the puppets from Spitting Image in the process. The lyrics themselves are more subtle but still, if you read between the lines, make it pretty clear that the band aren't too pleased with Reagan or Margaret Thatcher.
- Former Genesis guitarist Anthony Philips wrote a single called "Um And Aargh"note in 1980, a swipe at record executives underestimating and dumbing down music artists for commercial reasons. The line in the chorus of the song, "This is much too good for the people" was an actual quote from a record executive about the music of a composer friend of Anthony's. "Down And Out" from Genesis' And Then There Were Three seems aimed at a similar target.
- Christian Rock band Petra have fired two shots back at those who accused them of being evil for playing rock music. The first was a very conspicuous backmasked clip between two tracks on Never Say Die that says when you play it backwards "What are you looking for the Devil for when you oughtta be looking for the Lord?" The second was the song "Witch Hunt," sarcastically written from the perspective of their opponents and which included more backmasking in the bridge.
- Similarly Christian Rock pioneer Larry Norman's "Why Should The Devil Have All The Good Music?" is a Take That! at the "rock & roll is the devil's music" attitude of the the mainstream churches; and their general antipathy toward the youth culture of the 1960s and 1970s, the "Jesus People" movement in particular. A lot of of his music in general subtly and blatantly criticized both the secular counter-culture movement, which he saw as self-indulgent and morally bankrupt; and the mainstream Christian community, which he considered spiritually stifling, parasitical, and anti-youth-culture.
- His "Six O'Clock News" is a Take That! at the television networks and how they covered the Vietnam War.
- Another Christian Rock Take That! at the genre's critics came from DeGarmo and Key, specifically soon-to-be-disgraced televangelist Jimmy Swaggart on a couple of instances.
- The first was a direct reference in the song "Don't Stop the Music".
- Later, they released a song called "Brother Against Brother" with a gag credit in the liner notes with the words "dedicated to Jimmy Swaggart" blacked out (but visible upon close inspection).
- Queen's "Death on Two Legs" from A Night at the Opera was written as a hate letter against their former manager, Norman Sheffield and is quite possibly one of the most bitter screeds to ever be etched into a vinyl disc.
- "Scandal" is one big Take That! against the celebrity-obsessed media.
- "Fight From The Inside" was a Take That! at punk bands who Queen had verbally clashed with in the past.
- Pink Floyd:
- The album Wish You Were Here (1975) is full of jabs at the executives that pressured them into coming up with a follow-up to The Dark Side of the Moon, especially the songs "Welcome to the Machine" and "Have a Cigar" ("The band is just fantastic, that is really what I think / Oh, by the way, which one's Pink?").
- "Pigs (Three Different Ones)" from the following album, Animals, discusses three "pigs" which disgusted Roger Waters. The third is explicit ("Hey you, Whitehouse!"), the other two are rumoured to be a Corrupt Corporate Executive in general and Margaret Thatcher.
- In live performances of the song, the band would fly a giant inflatable pig over the audience. After his split with the band, Waters tried to stop the rest of the band from doing this. The band responded by using a pig with clearly visible male genitals.
- The entire album The Wall is just one long Take That! levelled at Pink Floyd fans and their stupidity, inspired by an incident where a fan climbed up on to some scaffolding during a Pink Floyd concert and bassist/cantankerous self-proclaimed band leader Roger Waters spat on his face. Hilariously, The Wall is one of Pink Floyd's most popular albums, got many a fan into them, and even has one of their most well known songs -- "Another Brick in the Wall, part 2".@wetbutt on Twitter: ugh rappers are so fucking egotistical. miss the days when Pink Floyd erected a wall onstage & sang songs about how stupid their fans were
- In a Pink Floyd related way, Syd Barrett sang a vicious stab at the paparazzi with his "Wolfpack", after all, surely the lines "Scowling/howling, the pack, in formation attack, information" can't be taken any other way...
- Don Henley's "Dirty Laundry" is aimed at music journalists that seemed to delight in the infighting that preceded the breakup of The Eagles. He occasionally sarcastically dedicated the song in live performances "To Mr. Bill O'Reilly" or "To Mr. Rupert Murdoch".
- In a business-related Take That!, The Rolling Stones once met a contractual obligation to a former record company by delivering an unreleasable song: "Cocksucker Blues".
- "Californication" by the Red Hot Chili Peppers was a Take That! against the the negative side of Hollywood and how said negativity has spread throughout the rest of the world.
- Barenaked Ladies' album All In Good Time, has two tracks inspired by the departure of Steven Page; frontman Ed Robertson might say otherwise but the message of the lyrics "I tried to be your brother but you cried and ran for cover", "everyone sees right through you" and "I'd use a metaphor but I'm done with you" is somewhat obvious.
- Page's response was to release a cover of Leonard Cohen's "A Singer Must Die"; the meaning of the phrase "a singer must die for the lie in his voice" is equally clear.
- He next wrote the song "A New Shore" which had the telling lyric "I forget if I was pushed or I jumped overboard/And after all this time, what's the difference?". Simply put, he's moved on with his life and wishes that Robertson would do the same.
- Pavement's "Range Life" included some slightly cryptic take that's at Stone Temple Pilots and The Smashing Pumpkins — the latter had the line "I don't understand what they mean, like I could really give a fuck" directed at them, which Billy Corgan took pretty personally. Stephen Malkmus did claim the whole song was written from the perspective of a cranky old hipster and didn't reflect his own views, but still made a habit of making digs at Corgan when it came up in interviews, and in live performances of the song he occasionally updated the lyrics to include more current take that's ("Out on tour with the Counting Crows / did you hear their new album blows?" for instance).
- The Smiths:
- "Paint a Vulgar Picture" from Strangeways, Here We Come by is a shot at record companies who reissue an artists' back catalogue after their death to capitalize on the Dead Artists Are Better effect.
- "Panic" was a swipe at BBC Radio for following up news reports on Chernobyl with plays of Wham!'s "I'm Your Man", with a child choir joining Morrissey's chants of "Hang the DJ, Hang the DJ, Hang the DJ".
- The Queen Is Dead and its title track are jabs at the Royal Family, who Morrissey personally disliked.
- A portion of Thrice's song "Lullaby" might be a Take That! directed at the famous John Lennon song "Imagine": "No right or wrong / Can you imagine? / A world where there's no more need to cry / But no joy or passion / It seems like the price is much too high."
- Steely Dan's "Only a Fool Would Say That" is possibly a Take That! to "Imagine" — at very least it's directed at rich pop singers and celebrities espousing Utopian ideals in general.
- Ben Folds' "Rockin' the Suburbs" (the original version, not the Over the Hedge version) was a Take That! targeted at rock/metal musicians who write angsty, self-pitying songs and are overly-reliant upon curse words for shock value, particularly after Jonathan Davis of Korn made fun of him.
- Due to their refusing to lip sync for a TV performance, Wheatus' second album, Hand Over Your Loved Ones was poorly promoted in the UK and never saw release in the US. Once the band was free from their record contract, they self-released a revised version of the album and changed the title to Suck Fony.
- Elvis Costello:
- "The Other Side of Summer" has Take That!'s at John Lennon's "Imagine" ("Was it a millionaire who said 'Imagine no possessions'"), Pink Floyd ("A poor little schoolboy who said 'We don't need no lessons'"), David Bowie ("The rabid rebel dogs outside the shampoo shop"), Madonna ("The pop princess is downtown shooting up"), and Neil Young ("Madman standing on the side of the road, saying, 'Look at my eyes, look at my eyes, look at my eyes, look at my eyes.'"), alongside drug users, shallow teenage girls, corrupt politicians and pollutants. All set to a tune paying tribute to the 1970's Beach Boys.
- 'Tramp The Dirt Down' is one long 'fuck you' to Margaret Thatcher.
- A verse of "The Greatest Thing" is a jab at "Wham! Rap (Enjoy What You Do)".
- "How To Be Dumb" is aimed at former Attractions bassist Bruce Thomas, who Costello had a falling out with in the late 1980's.
- Supertramp's Breakfast in America has two, done by and directed at each of the singers. Rick Davies' "Casual Conversations" is a take that towards Roger Hodgson, and Roger's "Child of Vision" is one toward Rick.
- The entire Crime of the Century album appears to consist of the two trading potshots at each other ("Hide in Your Shell", "Dreamer", etc.)
- "Cannonball" is directed at a corrupt concert promoter Rick Davies worked with.
- Tom Petty's "The Last DJ" is an instant classic Take That! at corporate-owned radio.
- Spoon's single "The Agony of Lafitte", and it's b-side "Lafitte Don't Fail Me Now" are both about their former A&R man Ron Laffitte. Laffitte quit his job shortly after their album A Series Of Sneaks met with disappointing sales, despite his promise to the band he'd stick with them, and Spoon were subsequently dropped from Elektra Records.
- Bob Dylan's 1971 re-recording of "You Ain't Going Nowhere" included a gentle jab at The Byrds' cover of the song: Roger McGuinn switched a couple of verbs around, mistakenly rendering one lyric as "Pack up your money, pick up your tent". Therefor Dylan's re-recording changed it to "Pick up your money, pack up your tent, McGuinn".
- Neil Young's "Ambulance Blues" ("You're all just pissing in the wind. You don't know it, but you are/ And there ain't nothin' like a friend, who can tell you you're just pissing in the wind") is allegedly about Crosby, Stills & Nash. Young has quite a few for each album, especially the Ditch Trilogy. His anti-Reagan/Bush rant-set-to-music known as "Rockin' in the Free World" comes to mind, then there's the ENTIRE Living With War album, with every song being a Take That towards George W. Bush. and his policies.
- "Los Angeles, I'm Yours" by The Decemberists is a comprehensive list of everything Colin Meloy dislikes about the City of Angels.
- Heart's track "Barracuda" was a scathing dig at a rapacious former music company who, to boost sales with a bit of controversy, performed a Black Op by spreading potentially libellous, damaging, and above all salacious rumours, that Ann and Nancy Wilson were not only gay, their particular form of lesbian preference involved getting off with each other. With people proving ready to believe this and adding imaginative bits of their own as the rumour spread, the humiliated singing sisters wrote and delivered the track as a scathing comeback on Mushroom Records's executives and marketeers who had originated the rumours in a cynical bid to sell more product.
- Garbage had two in Bleed Like Me: "Sex Is Not The Enemy", against Moral Guardians after the major outcry against Janet Jackson's Wardrobe Malfunction; and "Boys Wanna Fight", criticizing The War on Terror.
- Pearl Jam's "Bu$hleaguer", which on its original performances included a George W. Bush mask. A few didn't take it so well.
- Happy Mondays' "God's Cop" is a Take That! directed at the controversial then-Chief Constable of Greater Manchester James Anderton, who became known as "God's copper" since he claimed to speak with God. The Fall, another Manchester band, also took a dig at him in their song "Hit The North" ("Cops can't catch criminals, but what the heck, they're not so bad... they talk to God!")
- The Fall in general have done a lot of these, whether in the form of entire songs or just individual lyrics. A couple of the more blatant examples of the latter are the lines "If I ever end up like U2 / slit my throat with a garden vegetable" (from "A Past Gone Mad") and "But I'm so sick of Snow Patrol" (from "Mask Search")
- "If It Makes You Happy" by Sheryl Crow is aimed at critics denouncing her for writing "feel-good" music. "Love Is A Good Thing", from the same Self-Titled Album, has a verse berating Walmart for selling guns and ammo readily (WalMart later barred the album from being sold there in response, at the time).
- "Another Hit And Run" by Def Leppard is a Take That! to their former UK fans that accused them of "selling out".
- Tears for Fears — after Curt Smith quit the band in 1991, Roland Orzabal put the song "Fish Out of Water" on the next album, telling Curt off for leaving the group and generally being difficult to work with. Curt, for his part, released the song "Sun King" on his solo Mayfield album that attacks Roland for being a tyrant with an oversized ego. They reconciled in 2000, though, and both admit to having an odd sort of affection for the other's "take that" tunes.
- Red Rider guitarist Tom Cochrane wrote "Lunatic Fringe" as a criticism against what he saw as a rising level of antisemitism in the 1970s, in spite of not being Jewish himself. The song addresses the "lunatic fringe" of society holding extreme beliefs and warns them that "we can hear you coming."
- Amanda Palmer teasingly accused the British tabloid newspaper The Daily Mail of doing this when they wrote about her band's appearance at the 2013 Glastonbury Music Festival. Instead of being about their performance, the article instead focused on a Wardrobe Malfunction that briefly exposed her left breast. Being Amanda Palmer, she wrote "Dear Daily Mail".Dear Daily Mail, there's a thing called a search engine, use it
If you'd Googled my tits in advance you'd have found that your photos are hardly exclusive
In addition you state that my breast had escaped from my bra like a thief on the run
You do know it wasn't attempting to just take in the rare British sun?
- The song has been performed live only once. Daily Mail and other tabloids will probably now think twice about writing reviews of her performances that don't talk about her music...
- "Money for Nothing" by Dire Straits is an interesting recursive example — at first listen, it sounds a lot like a Take That towards mainstream music industry, but in fact, Mark Knopfler has repeatedly explained that it was inspired by an unambitious dumbass he met in an electronics store who struck him as the epitome of everything that was wrong and reactionary about rock fans (which makes it a Take That towards a Take That).
- The Rush album 2112, recorded in 1976, was intended as a Take That aimed at the band's record label (Mercury). Their previous album had sold poorly, and Mercury executives urged them not to do any more concept songs. They ignored this advice and recorded the 20-minute 2112 suite, figuring that they had nothing to lose. The album became Rush's U.S. breakthrough and went gold a year and a half after its release.
- "Rhythm Section Want Ad" by They Might Be Giants is commonly interpreted as a jab at everyone who said they'd never get anywhere when they started out as two guys with a drum machine, and an argument that there's "lots of room to roam" for niche acts like theirs.
- "Mrs Potato Head" by Melanie Martinez is a take that against how common plastic surgery is and the body issues caused by the media.
- Collective Soul's "Smashing Young Man" is one towards an unnamed, trash-talking arrogant celebrity heavily rumored to be Billy Corgan: Aside from how the title sounds like a play on the name of The Smashing Pumpkins, there's the fact that Corgan has long been critical of Collective Soul, alleging that their hit "Shine" was a Smashing Pumpkins ripoff. Collective Soul's criticism is surprisingly constructive so far as a Take That song goes: the overall point seems to be that the subject of the song should be doing more positive things with his fame.
- "Flowers" by Hurt pokes fun at a lot of targets, including the band themselves, but they get less lighthearted and more scathing when it comes to the verse directed at their former record label (and also music pirates).
- "Republican Party Reptile" by Big Country could be seen as a Take That! towards right-wing politicians calling them oppressive and irresponsible.
- Lou Reed's "Good Evening Mr. Waldheim" rips Nazi-turned-Austrian-President Kurt Waldheim, Pope John Paul II and Jesse Jackson for anti-Semitism,
- "Ladykillers" by Lush was written about some guys whom obnoxiously tried to hit on members of the band: one verse describes one "blondie" who was "with us for the summer" and "liked to talk about himself all day and all night": this is a confirmed reference to Matt Sharp — The Rentals toured with Lush one summer and Sharp had bleached his hair at the time. Another verse is rumored to be about Anthony Kiedis, and they cast an obvious lookalike for the music video. Despite this, Miki Berenyi made a guest appearance on a Rentals album after the song was released.
- Spin Doctors: According to lead singer Chris Barron, "Little Miss Can't Be Wrong" is directed at his step-mother, who told him he'd never make it in show business and would end up living in a school basement, working as a janitor and playing the guitar for rats.
- Deep Purple had an exchange of bandmates writing songs attacking each other:
- "Smooth Dancer" was vocalist Ian Gillan's screed about his personal issues with guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, and a disguised resignation letter, detailing how the subject of the song ("black suede") is a vain, lazy, arrogant person, of whom he will be rid of soon ("Don't you look at me because I'm gonna shake free"). True to his promise, Gillan quit the band after his contracual obligations were done.
- Almost two decades later, Blackmore penned his rebuttal, "King of Dreams", whose lyrical content is essentially a boast that it doesn't matter whether Gillan's criticisms are accurate, because he's popular.I'm a real smooth dancer, I'm fantasy man
Master of illusion, magic touch in my hand
All the stages are empty when I steal the scenes
A beggar of love, second hand hero
King of Dreams
- The Pretenders' "How Much Did You Get For Your Soul?" is an open swipe at pop or rock stars who sell out their credibility by letting their music be used for commercial advertising. The lines Millions of kids are looking at you, you say, "Let them drink soda pop" and Who's got soul? / From the African nation to the Pepsi generation are generally taken to mean that the main target is Michael Jackson, who had a huge deal with Pepsi and starred in a commercial featuring a rerecorded version of "Billie Jean", dubbed "Pepsi Generation".
- After Bianca Jagger urged her husband Mick of The Rolling Stones to move beyond music to more notable causes, such as political ones, and many journalists started criticising the Stones for being too shallow and simplistic, Jagger wrote It's Only Rock 'n' Roll, in which he showed that the music he made was enough for him.
- "Enemy" by Sevendust, written by their drummer Morgan Rose, dissed Coal Chamber frontman Dez Fafara for the way he treated Rose's (then) wife, who also happened to be the bassist for Coal Chamber.
- The Guess Who's "Glamour Boy" mocked the rising Glam Rock scene as being style over substance, with David Bowie being a particular (though unnamed) target. However, after Bowie's death, Guess Who vocalist Burton Cummings would play the song live and re-contextualize it as a tribute.
- "Discophony" by the Sweet was an undisguised and brutal Take That to disco music. Among the lyrics:Disco ain't worth your masturbating,
Rock and roll will keep on celebrating
I'll always be there
- Thin Lizard Dawn's "Sucks Like Oasis" (later shortened to just "Sucks" for legal reasons). The full title drop is "stop me somehow if I start to suck like Oasis".
- In The Hamilton Mixtape, "Immigrants (We Get the Job Done)" is an extended "fuck you" to American anti-immigration sentiment — it was released the same week that Donald Trump was elected president as a deliberate move by Lin Manuel Miranda.
- The Religion Rant Song, in its various forms, is this to... you guessed it, religion.
- And Hail to the Thief is this to the president or other leader, whether a real one or a character in the story.
- Carly Simon's "You're So Vain" is one of music's most famous Take Thats, but nobody knows who's the receptor of the song. Warren Beatty said that he's pretty sure its about him. Beatty remains the most popular choice from the hints she's dropped over the years, but she's also stated that the song was a composite and that Beatty was one of several men she wrote the song about. Another name that's frequently tossed out is Mick Jagger...which would be deliciously ironic, since he provides backup vocals on the song. But only one person other than Simon knows for sure: NBC television producer Dick Ebersol, who not only won the secret, but also a peanut butter sandwich and a personal performance, in a charity auction. He is, sadly, sworn to secrecy. note
- Johnny Cash and his 1996 album Unchained won great critical acclaim, but few at country music radio were willing to even so much as play anything from the album ... the main reason being their fascination with "new" country artists of the time, including Tim McGraw, Faith Hill and Shania Twain. So when Unchained won a Grammy Award for Best Country Album in 1998, Cash and the album's producer, Rick Rubin, decided to show their "appreciation" for country radio's non-support by taking out a full-page advertisement in a March 1998 issue of Billboard magazine. The ad featured a photograph of a circa-mid 1960s Cash sticking up his middle finger, along with a message reinforcing country radio's lack of support. Cash's statement triggered a renewed debate over what constitutes country music, and only strengthened his stature and legacy among fans.
- Brad Paisley did a shot on shallow celebrities in "Celebrity". Paisley also takes a dig at country radio — with help from classic country artists Bill Anderson, George Jones and Buck Owens — on "Too Country."
- George Strait and Alan Jackson take their own frustrations out on country radio — specifically, the lack of airplay of perfectly viable new material by George Jones and Merle Haggard, among others — in the 2000 hit "Murder On Music Row."
- Before that, Alan Jackson did "Gone Country" as a potshot against musicians from other genres moving into country, portraying them as Jaded Washouts who are only going into country to revive their flagging careers.
- Pretty much all of the Dixie Chicks' Taking the Long Way is a Take That! to those who criticized lead singer Natalie Maines after she made a negative comment about then-president George W. Bush in 2003 (a move which torpedoed the Chicks' career). In "Not Ready to Make Nice", she even expresses anger at the death threats the band got.
- "Mean," a No. 2 country hit in 2011 for country-pop megastar Taylor Swift. Some say the song's lyrics — about rising above adversity, particularly that induced by naysayers — is a sly dig at conservative critics of country music, particularly those who have critically panned (some say disparaged or worse) Swift's vocal and musical style, and abilities.
- Roy Clark and "The Lawrence Welk-Hee Haw Counter-Revolution Polka," which is a take that to both CBS and ABC, which cancelled, respectively, Hee Haw and The Lawrence Welk Show in 1971, in what was clearly a case of those shows (perceived, at least) to be drawing in older viewers, rather than the more desirable younger demographic, even though both shows becoming long-running ratings winners in syndication.
- Done with a fair bit of This Loser Is You included in "Fan Song" by Dethklok, mocking their fans throughout and even calling them "brainless mutants" at the start of the track.
- Mojo Nixon's 1989 song "Debbie Gibson Is Pregnant With My Two-Headed Love Child" includes in its lyrics a slam at then-MTV golden boy Rick Astley. Because of Astley's all-too-fleeting but immensely profitable popularity at the time, MTV's management refused to broadcast the video. In response, Nixon broke with the network, which had previously featured him in several promotional spots; his refusal to work with MTV continues to this day. The lines that were so offensive?Rick Astley is a pantywaist, match my butt with his face
He's teeny tiny two inches of terror, they're all gonna scare you
Hairbrained cockamamie knuckleheaded idjit galoot
Best Rock Vocalist... compared to WHAT?!?
- Mojo Nixon also recorded a song with the subtle title "Don Henley Must Die" ("...Don't let him get back together/With Glenn Frey!")
- "Weird Al" Yankovic mostly avoids Take That! in his parodies, but there are a few exceptions. One of the reasons Al's songs are as good as they are is that indeed, most of the time they're not even a Take That!; they tend to be sediments in their own right. Which is far, far more than most parodies we hear on the radio can say for themselves. Of course, Yankovic asks permission of the artists before he does parodies of their work, and his Take Thats are rather gentle compared to most of these examples.
- His parody "Achy Breaky Song" is about someone who would rather listen to anything other than Billy Ray Cyrus's "Achy Breaky Heart."
- "This Song's Just Six Words Long" is also a jab at the song it parodies, "Got My Mind Set On You" by George Harrison, the chorus of which is simply the title sung over and over.
- "Smells Like Nirvana" is about Nirvana's mumbled lyrics. Kurt Cobain's comment was something to the effect that this was the moment he truly realized that Nirvana had hit the big time: Weird Al wanted to do a parody of one of their songs.
- The unreleased song "It's Still Billy Joel To Me", which probably should stay unreleased.
- Weird Al's original song "One More Minute" was written in reaction to a real-life romantic breakup; in the video version, he tears up a photo of the ex-girlfriend in question.
- Then there's "Don't Download This Song", which is a parody of anti-digital-piracy sentiment. The kicker? He put it up on his website for free.
- The video for "White & Nerdy," at the line "I edit Wikipedia," has Weird Al vandalizing the Atlantic Records page on That Other Wiki, replacing the article with "YOU SUCK!" AMV Hell noticed. In Number 4, there is a clip for "White & Nerdy", where a character edits the Wikipedia page on Obesity, changing it to "YOU'RE FAT!!!" This shot at Atlantic Records was actually the end of an extended Take That!. See below.
- Originally, Al's plan for the album Straight Outta Lynwood was to include "You're Pitiful," a parody of James Blunt's "You're Beautiful", and make that the first single from the album. Blunt was perfectly fine with this and gave Al permission to go forward. At the last minute, Atlantic, Blunt's label, threatened legal action to keep the song off the album. Al, not wanting to deal with a lawsuit, complied... by proceeding to distribute the track for free on the Internet. At live shows, when Al performs "You're Pitiful", he parodies Blunt's disrobing in the original music video by removing layer upon layer of T-shirts. One of the shirts reads "ATLANTIC RECORDS SUCKS".
- Couch Potato is Al's rant against mediocre and poor tv shows to the tune of Eminem's Lose Yourself. Shows lambasted include The King of Queens (which Jumped the Shark in the first minute), American Idol (host Simon Cowell is described as someone who "opens his mouth, always says something foul"), Fear Factor (which Al says he felt the need to take a long shower after watching), and Everybody Tolerates Raymond.
- The narrator of "Albuquerque" complains that his first time on an airplane was marred by the in-flight movie: Bio-Dome with Pauly Shore. This is considered a more pressing concern than the plane crashing into a hillside and exploding in a giant fireball with no survivors.
- Weird Al has made one specific verbal Take That!, in an interview rather than in a song, and even then its a really, really mild Take That!. In response to rapper Coolio saying that he did not authorize "Amish Paradise" (a parody of the rapper's own "Gangster's Paradise"), Weird Al said, "Yeah, well... I notice he is still cashing the royalty checks we send him."
- The video for "Word Crimes" illustrates irony vs. coincidence: A picture of a burning fire truck is labelled "irony;" a picture of a wedding couple being rained on is labelled "weather."
- "Word Crimes" also includes this lyric: "You should never/Write words using numbers/Unless you're seven/Or your name is Prince." The artist formerly and once again known as Prince is apparently so averse to song parodies that his lawyer instructed Al not to make eye contact with Prince at an awards show. At this point in the song, the video displays the weird symbol Prince briefly adopted in lieu of his name.
- The narrator of "Trapped in the Drive-Thru" mentions he's watching "something stupid" on TV. Several lines later, it's implied to be Behind The Music.
- "I'll Sue Ya" is a mockery of frivolous lawsuits, portraying the suit-happy narrator as short-tempered, stupid, and hypocritical; many of the lawsuits he claims to have filed are references to real ones. It also contains a couple take-thats to the narrator's targets: While listing all the people he's sued and why, he includes Delta Airlines because they sold him a ticket to New Jersey "and it sucked." Later he sues Ben Affleck, but instead of saying why, he just pauses, then says, "Aw, do I even need a reason?"
- Adam Buxton released a song about Piracy which, using bits of music from a bombastic anti-piracy commercial, depicts a pirate as an overblown villain. The Take That! is not against them however, but against the entertainment industry for apparently only caring about creating things if they know they're getting paid for it.
- Famous songwriters Rodgers and Hart wrote "I Like To Recognize The Tune" as a Take That! at jazz bands and how generic and discordant jazz was. Inevitably, jazz had its way with this song by making it a jazz standard.
- Daler Mehndi's memetic "Tunak Tunak Tun" was created in response to critics believing his only real claim to fame was the women dancing in his music videos. The music video for "Tunak Tunak Tun" featured no women, only four different versions of Mehndi and hokey special effects. The song proved just as, if not more, popular than his previous works.
- Some of the songs on Emilie Autumn's album "Opheliac" seem to be Take Thats against one person or another.
- "I Know Where You Sleep" is a threatening song to a former lover.
- "Misery Loves Company" is another song to a former lover in a similar vein, telling him "You're so easy to read/But the book is boring me" also may double as a song mocking her own mental issues. (According to her website)
- "Gothic Lolita" is a song about a girl raped as a child saying that the man who did it "should be killed by an army of little girls".
- Thank God I'm Pretty is a song mocking rape culture, female inferiority in public and the trials and tribulations of being one of The Beautiful Elite
- Miss Lucy Has Some Leeches is about her experiences in the asylum.
- Liar is an Ironic Echo of a former lover/friend who wanted her to suffer for reasons she does not understand.
- The "1812 Overture" by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. After the failed invasion of Russia by the French Army, Tchaikovsky wrote this piece of music to celebrate Russia's victory ... and used quotes of the French national anthem as a repeated motif. Take that, Napoleon!
- Ironically, the French anthem used in the overture, "La Marseillaise", was actually banned in France by Napoleon himself from 1799 to 1815. It did not become the anthem again on a permanent basis until 1870. The Russian anthem used in the piece, "God Save the Tsar", was also not in use in 1812.
- Mitch Benn song parodies:
I sat through the song, as he droned on and on,Like some pale, intellectual outlaw.And when he was done, I thought "That wasn't much fun,That fella needs to get out more."
- "I Never Went Through A Smiths Phase":
Because it's on-ly two notes,They just go up and down,And they don't have a tune,They just sound like they do.
- "I May Just Have To Murder James Blunt":
This could be Embrace, Keane or Snow Patrol,Thirteen Senses sound like this as well, I'm told.It could be anyone, it's so hard to say,Maybe this is actually Coldplay.
- And, of course, "Everything Sounds Like Coldplay Now":
- MGMT's instrumental "Lady Dada's Nightmare," a creepy but self-consciously elaborate orchestral, instrumental song.
- The 1984 song Where's The Dress by Moe Bandy and Joe Stampley is one aimed at the Culture Club.
- Calypso music from Trinidad (not to be confused with Western Calypso) was full of Take Thats and it was the natural precursor to the rap diss track. A famous example of a rivalry in Calypso is that of Lord Melody and The Mighty Sparrow. Melody would frequently insult Sparrow by saying he was stupid, a criminal and that his girlfriend/wife was ugly, and Sparrow would reply to Melody by calling him ugly, dirty and rude. Melody and Sparrow were known to have calypso battles as part of calypso shows, and Sparrow usually won due to the public favoring his more passive aggressive nature. Some lyrics and description can be found here
- The score album of The Avengers can be considered a Take That! in a sense to downloaders — several soundtracks of late have had additional material that's only available digitally (like TRON: Legacy and Captain America: The First Avenger). But while the download album clocks in at 64:25, the physical one not only has several of its tracks running longer (in particular "Tunnel Chase" and "Stark Goes Green," both of which run over two minutes longer on the CD than the download), there's also one whole extra track ("Interrogation") which brings it all in at 76:17. This went down well with soundtrack fans (especially those of Alan Silvestri), and as Intrada's Roger Feigelson stated that they specifically wanted the download to be shorter than the CD.
- La-La Land has subsequently done this with several of their releases, such as Looper and Jack Reacher.
- The world of Opera has more than one Take That!.
- Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg by Richard Wagner features a fussy, conservative, old-fashioned antagonist named Sixtus Beckmesser who was a parody of Wagner's enemy, the music critic Eduard Hanslick (early drafts of the libretto named the character Hans Lich).
- Elegy for Young Lovers by Hans Werner Henze features as its protagonist, a poet named Mittenhoffer who uses and discards people in his life who are useful to him. Co-librettist W. H. Auden may or may not have intended Mittenhoffer to be a portrait of Benjamin Britten.
- Intermezzo by Richard Strauss features the domestic story of a conductor with the initials "RS" who has a demanding, nagging wife. Pauline Strauss, the real-life composer's wife, was not amused.
- Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's The Impressario—the overture is a parody of Salieri's style, and the two rival singers are portraits of two of his more. . . .difficult. . . leading ladies.
- This happens a few times in the music of Gilbert and Sullivan, such as Patience making fun of the aesthetic movement and Oscar Wilde, but the standout example is "I've Got a Little List" from The Mikado, in which Ko-Ko, the Lord High Executioner, sings a Long List of "society offenders who might well be underground". It is a tradition to update the song to reflect contemporary evils, so one might hear references to "the vampire novelist", "the dodgy dieselist", "the Televangelist", "the noisy public homophobe who secretly is gay" and "the orange-tinted bully with a Tribble on his head".
- The fourth movement of Béla Bartók's Concerto for Orchestra notably features a mocking parody of Shostakovich's Seventh Symphony, a piece that Bartók particularly disliked.
- The third movement of Gustav Mahler's Ninth Symphony is probably this. The autograph has a dedication "to my brothers in Apollo" which, considering the vicious tone of the movement itself, is likely a sarcastic reference to his critics.
- From The Mary Whitehouse Experience Encyclopaedia, which admittedly is a comedy book:Smiths, The: Seminal 1980s band whose music was born out of the chemistry between its two central figures, Mike Joyce and Andy Rourke. The union of Joyce — quiet, tidy — with Rourke — captain of his local pub team — produced a series of songs more memorable for their drum and bass lines than for their intrusive guitar parts and sometimes silly lyrics.
- When John Addison won an Emmy in 1985 for scoring the pilot of Murder, She Wrote, he commented in his acceptance speech it was a surprise this won because the music "was played by people." At the time, synth scores — spearheaded by Miami Vice — were all the rage (and indeed Miami Vice had fielded one of the nominees that year, as did the also-electronically-scored St. Elsewhere).note
- A very subtle one in Jerry Rivera's song "Amores como el nuestro" ("Love like ours"). The song is all about love in a "pure" way, and one of the verses complains that "de sábanas mojadas hablan las canciones" ("songs talk about wet sheets"). That line is a reference to Lalo Rodriguez's song "Devórame otra vez" ("Devour me again"), which has the line "He mojado mis sábanas blancas recordandote" ("I wet my white sheets when I remembered you"). At the time, several singers in the salsa scene was doing "romantic" songs so full of Intercourse with You that it generated an offshot dubbed "salsa erotica"; Rivera, then a Teen Idol salsa singer, was singing songs with little to not sexual content.
- This is the whole schtick of the Mexican bolero singer Paquita La Del Barrio (and also overlaps with Reality Subtext) since most of her songs deals about failed relationships, misogynistic men, and hard criticism against Mexican male culture towards women, sometimes in a very exaggerated an melodramatic way. Justified, since she suffered about almost all of that in Real Life.
- Just to give an idea about how she's still bitter about the whole topic, most of her songs includes pretty offensive lyrics and names like Rata de Dos Patas (You Cheating Rat/Animal!), Viejo Rabo Verde (Dirty Old Man), No Te Hagas el Pendejo (Stop Fuckin' Around) and many others
- And her most famous song, Rata de Dos Patas, is literally a carpet of insults against her first former husband.
- In response to the ploddingly slow tempo of mainstream electronic dance music, which is typically in the 128-132 bpm range, trance veteran Armin Van Buuren produced the song "Who's Afraid of 138?", and founded a label of the same name, focusing on faster uplifting trance tracks.
- Acid house group The Shamen followed up their commercially successful Boss Drum album with Axis Mutatis, a more experimental album that didn't quite sell as well and produced no hit singles. Derek Birket, founder of their label One Little Indian, asked that they return to making more accessible music. Hempton Manor, their final album released for the label, went in an even more experimental direction and consisted entirely of Instrumentals — if you read the first letter of each of the ten song titles, the track list spells out "Fuck Birket".
- In 1998, electronic music project Cex released its debut album, Cells. Nine years later, Blaqk Audio, a side project of Davey Havok and Jade Puget of AFI called their first album CexCells (later claiming to have never heard of the Cex album). Later in 2007, Cex released the EP Exotical Privates, which had a cover art consisting of the letters "AFI" tattooed on a scrotum.
- In other countries, their national anthems contain lyrics that targets another country. Algeria's is one prime example as it targeted France.
- The first stanza of "Scotland the Brave" characterizes Italy as a place "where freedom expires amid softness and sighs".
- From Parliament's "P. Funk (Wants To Get Funked Up)":"Then I was down south and I heard funk with some main ingredients
Like Doobie Brothers, Blue Magic, David Bowie
It was cool
But can you imagine Doobiein' your funk? Ho!"
- Baha Men's "Who Let the Dogs Out" is a well-aimed snipe against catcallers. According to songwriter Anslem Douglas, the party where the song takes place was going great, with everybody enjoying — until the catcallers came into the picture and did their nasty thing, prompting the women to fight back. And in the midst of the chaos that ensued, a woman reacted by comparing the catcallers to dogs.
- In the unofficial Portal edition of Dumb Ways to Die, the "dumbest ways to die" in the bridge are: donating one or more of your vital organs, falling into a pool of toxic waste, going into cryosleep when the power is out, getting put into a potato and eaten by a crow, standing around a platform that's heading towards fire, and waiting for Half-Life 3.
- The American song My Country Tis of Thee can probably be seen as being a bit of “take that” to Britain. It was written in the 1840s, about 50 years after the American Revolution, using the tune of the de facto British anthem God Save The King. The most obvious part is the final verse, especially the last line, “great God our king”, which can be seen as saying Americans have no king but God.
- The music video for Southstar's "Miss You" contains him painting the words "fuck copycats" onto a building, referencing plagiarism accusations surrounding a rework of the same name by Robin Schulz & Oliver Tree, the latter being the artist behind the original 2020 song "Jerk".
To be sorted
- Dan le Sac/Scroobius Pip's song "Fixed" is a Take That! against mainstream British hip-hop — particularly the output of Channel U — sung over a remix of Dizzie Rascal's "Fix Up, Look Sharp".
- Just about all of Tom Lehrer's songs could be said to be examples of this trope, but gets particularly pointed on That Was the Year That Was, which came out of a stint as a contributor to a satirical current affairs show. It includes, among others:
- His "ode" to the
NaziGerman rocket scientist Wernher Von Braun.Don't say that he's hypocritical
Say rather that he's apolitical
"Once ze rockets are up, who cares where zey come down?
Zat's not my department," says Wernher Von Braun.
- "Send the Marines", about US foreign policy.For might makes right
And till they've seen the light
They've got to be protected
All their rights respected
Till somebody we like can be elected
- "Folk Song Army" mocks protest folk songs, which he deemed useless and guilty of blatantly obvious messages.
- His "ode" to the
- "Je Veux te Voir" by YELLE is four minutes of her insulting this other rapper, Cuizinier.
- Jay Foreman's "Calypso" is a hilariously vicious song about cheap fruit-flavoured juice drinks.Calypso, Calypso, get that filthy drink away from me
Calypso, Calypso, water, sugar and E163
Calypso, Calypso, poison in a carton, child abuse
Calypso, Calypso, curiously orange plastic juice
- After legal problems left him unable to record for five years, Al Stewart wrote 'Licence to Steal' as an attack against the entire legal profession, in which he suggested the only way to deal with lawyers was by means of a direct nuclear strike.
- When Dave Carroll of the Sons of Ma were literally throwing them around and got only the stonewalling runaround from the business when he complained; he wrote and sang a song called "United Breaks Guitars" and posted the video on YouTube. The video became an instant media sensation and a PR nightmare for United.
- Later, musician Bing Futch referenced this incident when he described Northwest breaking his dulcimer in "Only a Northwest Song.
- The first verse of the opening track to Rilo Kiley's More Adventurous, "It's A Hit," is a massive Take That! to George W. Bush. More Adventurous having been released in 2004, this is understandable.
- Tim Minchin's "The Song For Phil Daoust" is pretty much an entire Take That! to a journalist who gave him a bad review.
- Self's "Moronic" is a parody of Alanis Morissette's "Ironic", and despite never actually mentioning her by name, it's clearly all a take that to Morissette herself:It's pure pain when she hits the airwaves
With a pack of lies that she wrote in the third grade
She's a head of lice that you just can't shake
And each single makes me sicker
- When held up against the falling-out between the band Pendulum and the web-community Dogs On Acid, the entire opening to the first track of the album In Silico, Showdown, can been seen as one giant Take That! to the users:Well, it's been such a long time comingI thought you'd understand.
That's overAhead all the linesYou've been drawing in the sand.
- (referring to the perceived change in style from Hold Your Colour)
'Cause it's simple:You were wrong.You must have known that we did not belong.
- (referring to most of their critics claiming their music was no longer drum and bass, as it did not follow its common conventions.)
I know you thought I'd sold my soul,But you never told me to my face.
- (In his penultimate post on the website, Rob Swire claimed that Pendulum's change in sound came from a simple change in taste and inspiration that many bands undergo, and not an attempt to sell out.)
I just had to leave you cold,And blow this shit away!
- (Another shot at posters calling the band sell-outs)
- Legendary record producer Phil Spector — the same Phil Spector recently convicted of murder — once created a record called "(Let's Dance) The Screw", apparently for the sole purpose of pissing off his former business partner. Snopes has the whole story.
- A good 90% of traditional Irish music is a Take That at England and British imperialism (with songs such as "Rifles Of The IRA" or "Come Out Ye Black And Tans"). Given Anglo/Irish history... not surprising.
- In 1896, Irish musician Percy French had a trip on the non-defunct Ennis-Kilkee line so bad he ended up mocking the railway company in his song "Are Ye Right There Michael".
- Hedley's "Cha-Ching" is comprised entirely of Take Thats against various reality shows and celebrities.
- The Manic Street Preachers have digs in most of their songs... one of them covers Boris Yeltsin, Saddam Hussein, Vladimir Zhirinovski, Jean Marie Le Pen, Myra Hindley, Ian Brady, Colin Ireland, Beverly Allit, Peter Sutcliffe, Jeffrey Dahmer, Denis Nielsen, Yoshinori Ueda, Eugene Terreblanche, James Pickles, Idi Amin and Slobodan Milosevic... Or maybe it's all one big Take That! to the mass media.
- Bob Ricci's parody of Nickelback's song "Photograph" is a big Take That! to the original artist.
- Carter USM's "Sheriff Fatman" is a vitriol-soaked Take That! against shady slum landlords. Word of God is that the corrupt character in the song is based on two real people.
- Lily Allen has done this at least twice.
- "Fuck You" is one big Take That! to former U.S. President George W. Bush.
- Her video for "Hard Out Here", besides being a scathing parody of the music industry, its sexism and stuff like Glam Rap, has a pretty direct one towards Robin Thicke and his "Blurred Lines". Lily is seen awkwardly dancing in front of letter-shaped balloons that make the phrase "LILY ALLEN HAS A BAGGY PUSSY": Thicke, in the video for the aforementioned song, was seen in front of balloons making the phrase "ROBIN THICKE HAS A BIG DICK".
- George Michael's "Freedom '90", anyone? That was GM's purest Take That! to his 80's Mr. Fanservice persona. From exploding Wurlitzers to burning leather jackets and quite the ironic lyrics...
- Jermaine Jackson, Michael Jackson's older brother, is an odd example. He wrote a song known as "Word to the Badd" that was a big 'Take That' at his brother Michael about a feud they were having. This, however, backfired big time and caused what was left of his music career to implode in his face. It did not help that the song was released the same year that Dangerous came out.
- The musical comedy duo Kit and the Widow have a song which (without actually mentioning him by name) directly accuses Andrew Lloyd Webber of plagiarism, with examples. They have another one with some less than flattering comments on Stephen Sondheim and his fans.
- Cracker's "It Ain't Gonna Suck Itself" is the only original song on the Cover Album Countrysides, their first album after leaving Virgin Records. It's part "Shaggy Dog" Story, part take that at Virgin, specifically calling out executive Roy Lott. They felt their last album for the label, Forever, got Screwed by the Network, since all marketing funds for it were cut off immediately after its release.
- Uncle Kracker originally wanted to be billed as simply Cracker, but was blocked from doing so by the band. Cracker would include a light Take That! in "What You're Missing", with the line "that's Cracker with a 'C' not 'K', or 'Uncle', understand?".
- Sara Bareilles' "Love Song" is to her record company, about how she's not gonna write them a love song. "King of Anything" is about the unsolicited advice she keeps getting.You sound so innocent, all full of good intent
Swear you know best
- The English Commonwealth-era Royalist song 'The Downfall of Charing Cross', written after the pulling-down of the eponymous cross by order of Parliament, finishes with these words ('Tyburn' refers to the gallows upon which the leading figures of the Parliamentary regime could expect to be hanged for treason in the event of a royal restoration.):Since crosses you so much distain, 'faith, if I were as you
For fear the king should rule again, I'd pull down Tyburn too.
- Hilarious in Hindsight or Harsher in Hindsight, as there was a royal restoration by the end of the decade... and indeed, many of the people who ordered Charing Cross to be destroyed were, in fact, executed for the regicide of Charles I.
- The 1966 Dutch protest song Welterusten Mijnheer de President (Sleep tight, Mister President) by Boudewijn de Groot balances between this and an outright "The Villain Sucks" Song. The song is listing several of the horrors of The Vietnam War, but tells President Lyndon Johnson not to worry about it all and have a good night's sleep.
- The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus's new EP "The Hell or High Water" is pretty much a giant attack on their former record label.
- Annoyed by his behavior in the late '70s, The Police recorded their early song, "Peanuts", as a Take That! to Sting's onetime hero, Rod Stewart.
- Everybody suspects that at least parts of Arcade Fire's The Suburbs are Take Thats against their primary fanbase, but how insulting Win Butler wanted to be and which parts were meant as insults and which as mere observation is something nobody can agree on.
- The B-52s took a poke at the whole backmasking controversy, where people were accusing artists of hiding backwards messages in their songs, and backmasked this message in Detour Thru Your Mind: "I buried my parakeet in the backyard. Oh no, you're playing the record backwards. Watch out, you might ruin your needle."
- Overkill had a similar backwards message near the end of their debut Feel the Fire: "There's no message here; you're going to ruin your needle, asshole!"
- Not to mention Electric Light Orchestra's "hidden message" in Fire on High: "The music is reversible, but time is not. Turn back!"
- "Weird Al" Yankovic decided to get in on the act to state "Satan eats Cheez Whiz".
- American Music Club's "The President's Test for Physical Fitness" is a very snarky account of two band members meeting an unnamed Small Name, Big Ego rock star.
- Atomic Rooster's song And So To Bed is a Take That against groupies who throw themselves at the band in the hopes that having sex with someone famous will make them special.
- Sugar's "Granny Cool" is a snarky take on an aging female hipster — the prevailing theory is that it's specifically about Sonic Youth's Kim Gordon.
- The Ohgr (side project of Skinny Puppy singer Nivek Ogre) song Cracker is a bit hard to understand at some points, but the music video makes it clear that it's a take that at Trent Reznor (with whom he performed on Pigface albums), Eminem and (arguably) the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
- "I Didn't Just Kiss Her" by Jen Foster takes a hit at the "girls kissing boys for attention" sort of faux-bicuriosity, and takes a hit at Katy Perry's "I Kissed a Girl".
- Alanis Morissette's "You Oughta Know" is one long, rage-inspired Take That! over her treatment at the hands of actor Dave Coulier.
- In recent performances of "Misirlou", which was the basis for the Black Eyed Peas' "Pump It", Dick Dale, who pioneered the version on his album Surfers Choice, sometimes sings the line "Turn up your radio, blast your stereo right now" from the BEP song. He is quite pissed at their sampling of it.
- Tokio Hotel beat out Katy Perry (among other artists, arguably more well-known) in the 2008 MTV EMAs, and Katy went on to dedicate "Ur So Gay" (numerous times) to the band, specifically Bill Kaulitz. Amusingly enough, they went on to beat her out AGAIN.
- Catatonia were so angry with Warner Brothers threatening to drop them that they wrote 'That's All Folks', a six-minute Take That! to the label, complete with One-Woman Wail. In the chorus, Cerys Matthews sings 'warn us', 'want us' and 'warm to us' to sound suspiciously similar to Warners. It was going to be the final track on 'International Velvet', but the record company cottoned on and had it replaced with 'My Selfish Gene'. The song ended up as a B-side on 'Strange Glue'. 'I Am The Mob' is another, more subtle dig at Warners.
- One album later, there was 'Storm The Palace', an anti-monarchist song.
- Fuckemos got their name after the lead singer was kicked out of the Austin, TX club Emo's. When the band soon became popular they played several shows at Emo's and were a favorite on the Emo's jukebox.
- Loudon Wainwright III's "T.S.D.H.A.V" (short for This Song Don't Have A Video) is one long Take That! to music videos and the artists who make them rather than just letting the songs speak for themselves. (Ironically, this song does have a video.)
- Stan Freberg's "The Old Payola Roll Blue$" is part justifiable attack on the payola scandal of the '50s and part — well, mostly — a Take That! to popular music which ends with a declaration that "proper" music like jazz is taking back the territory claimed by rock'n'roll (which proved to be a touch inaccurate). Freberg, by his own admission, is a huge fan of swing music and jazz... which, tellingly, he never sent up.
- "Rock and Roll Is Here to Stay" by Danny and the Juniors would appear to be one to rock music's detractors of The '50s.
- Mariah Carey has three examples of this, with dashes of Woman Scorned.
- Thirsty is aimed at Nick Cannon, if the YouTube comments were indicators.
- Heartbreaker pertains to ex-husband Tommy Mottola, especially when the Rainbow album was the first album Mariah released after their eventual separation and divorce.
- Crybaby, which this Rainbow album review noted as last vestiges of her feelings toward ex-boyfriend Derek Jeter.
- "Girl in a Country Song" by Maddie & Tae is a dig at the trend of "Bro-country" in The New '10s, skewering a lot of the overused tropes in songs, such as hot girls in bikinis, drinking beer in a truck, etc. The song also name-drops or otherwise lyrically references several contemporary bro-country hits, and points out the often misogynistic nature of such songs.
- The Fugs had several, but the one aimed at their former recording studio is perhaps the best. The title of the EP Thrown Off Atlantic is a reference to the contract dispute with the publisher of their first album, Atlantic Records. Some later releases of The Fug's First Album include a track consisting of a recording of the initial contract signing party for the album, under the title "In the Middle of Their First Recording Session the Fugs Sign the Worst Contract Since Leadbelly's" (a reference to the way Blues legend Huddy 'Leadbelly' Ledbetter was forced to sign over all rights to his songs for a pittance).
- Filk singer Tom Smith's song "And They Say I've Got Talent" is a very pointed Take That! aimed at Brittany Spears (or rather, the sort of corporate pop music she was a prime example of at the time), with lines such asAnd they say I've got talent,Maybe it'll show someday,I've got a big-ass contract,Songs the radio will playAnd play and play and play
- I've got a whole bunch ofPress releases, smiles, and evening gownsTo hide the fact that mySongs are Tori Amos hand-me-downs.To make me seem as if IUnderstand that music's from the soul,To make me feel as if I'mNot a product, carefully controlled.
And perhaps most telling, at least about Smith's view of Spears:
- Try not to think about theTruer, deeper, better singer-Songwriters you've never heard ofWorking hard and starving while ITour the country, do the talk shows,Sell the albums, get on M.T.V.,I only hope that somedaySomeone hears the songs I wrote for me....
- Valve Song: COUNT TO THREE by The Chalkeaters lampoons Valve for their apparent inability to release a game with "3" in its title all the while strongly hinting at the possibility of a Half Life 3. After singing about how they've fallen into a rut releasing "soulless card games" and "hardware releases" Gabe sings "If this machine keeps playing dead, we may end up on the other side"... and peers out the window at Ubisoft, Electronic Arts, and Activision's headquarters.