"Twisted"

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With its unusual vocal rhythm and edgy lyrics, "Twisted" is an unforgettable song. It's probably the most famous example of vocalese, the singing style where lyrics are either improvised or (as in this case) written for a jazz instrumental.

The best version of "Twisted" is the first. Singer Annie Ross also wrote the lyrics, for music by Wardell Gray. Annie Ross was a prolific singer, lyricist and actor who recorded several great albums with the trio Lambert, Hendricks and Ross. At age 77 Ross is still performing a weekly show at the Metropolitan Room at Gotham in New York City.

Click here to hear a clip from "Twisted." (MP3 file)

Lyrics for "Twisted":

My analyst told me that I was right out of my head
The way he described it he said I'd be better dead than live
I didn't listen to his jive
I knew all along that he was all wrong
And I knew that he thought I was crazy
But I'm not, oh no

My analyst told me that I was right out of my head
He said I need treatment but I'm not that easily led
He said I was the type that was most inclined
When out of his sight to be out of my mind
And he thought I was nuts
No more ifs or ands or buts

They say as a child
I appeared a little bit wild
With all my crazy ideas
But I knew what was happening
I knew I was a genius
What's so strange when you're a wizard at three
I knew that this was meant to be

Now I heard little children were supposed to sleep tight
That's why I drank a fifth of vodka one night
My parents got frantic didn't know what to do
But I saw some crazy scenes before I came to
Now do you think I was crazy
I may have been only three, but I was swinging

They all laughed at A. Graham Bell, they all laughed at Edison
And also at Einstein, so why should I feel sorry
If they just couldn't understand the idiomatic logic
That went on in my head, I had a brain, it was insane
Oh they used to laugh at me when I'd refuse to ride
On all those double-decker busses
All because there was no driver on the top

My analyst told me that I was right out of my head
But I said dear doctor I think that it's you instead
Because I've got a thing that's unique and new
To prove that I'll have the last laugh on you
'Cause instead of one head I've got two
And you know two heads are better than one

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