How Daft Punk's bad english made Get Lucky a hit

Owen Pallett has a great article on Slate explaining why Daft Punk's Get Lucky was such a huge success through the lenses of classic Western music theory. It may be a little technical but, if you know a bit about music, it's fascinating stuff. This bit is not music theory but very interesting too:

... let me draw your attention to the irresistible abuse of the word good: "We're up all night for good fun" vs. "Remind me to spend some good time with you."

First, this is a specifically Francophonic idiosyncrasy; native English speakers do not ask their lovers to remind them to spend "good time" with them, nor do they identify "good fun" as their motivation for staying up all night.

Secondly, the weighting is all wrong. Good is a word that needs to fall heavy, needs to be placed at the beginnings and endings of phrases. Remember Sir Paul McCartney's placement of good in "Good Day, Sunshine"—always settling on heavy syllables. "GOOD day SUNshine." "I'm looking GOOD, you know she's LOOKing fine." Worlds away from its apostrophic weighting in "WE'RE up all night for good FUN." For Daft Punk and Phoenix this little bit of language mangling works in their favor. It sounds off-balance and playful and sexy, like a foreign exchange student who might be a little drunk.

As any European—foreign student or not, myself included—can tell you, this is all true. The effect feels like being Kal-El and coming to Earth from Krypton.


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