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Funny Moments in Backward Messages

October 19, 2016

Starting in the ‘60s rock ‘n’ roll fans (and rock ‘n’ roll haters) became obsessed with playing vinyl records backward, looking for secret messages. One thing is for sure: playing a record backward destroyed the record. Here are some of the most amusing entries in the history of “backmasking.”
Funny Moments in Backward Messages

Pink Floyd

Former Pink Floyd bassist Roger Waters wanted to sample dialogue and sound effects from Stanley Kubrick’s 1969 film 2001: A Space Odyssey on his 1992 solo album Amused to Death. Kubrick said no, so Waters included a dig at the director on the song “Perfect Sense.”: “In the light and visions of the issues of Stanley, we have changed our mind. We have decided to include a backward message, Stanley, for you, and for all the other book burners.”

Ozzy Osbourne

On the 1988 song “Bloodbath in Paradise,” Ozzy Osbourne recorded backward a line parodying a very dirty line of dialogue spoken by a satanically possessed little girl in the movie The Exorcist. Osbourne says, “Your mother sells whelks in Hull.”

SCTV

As their wildly stereotypical Canadian SCTV characters Bob and Doug McKenzie, Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas recorded an album in 1981 called The Great White North. The track “Black Holes” includes an invitation to the listener to play that very track backward. If the listener does, they get a comedy sketch in which Moranis and Thomas blurt out lines of dialogue like:

“Good day, I’m Bob McKenzie. This is my brother, Doug”

“Take off!”

“No, you take off”

“This is the backwards part”

Paul McCartney and the Wings

On a 1995 episode of The Simpsons, Lisa wrestles with becoming a vegetarian, and gets a pep talk from meat-eschewers Paul and Linda McCartney. Paul even mentions that, “If you play ‘Maybe I’m Amazed’ backward, you’ll find a recipe for a really rippin’ lentil soup.” That 1970 hit song plays over the episodes credits…along with a secret backward message recorded by Paul McCartney just for the occasion. What is it? An actual recipe for lentil soup.

“Weird Al” Yankovic

“Weird Al” Yankovic made fun of the whole backward message thing (as he does) with his own backward message. On his 1996 song “I Remember Larry,” he can be heard saying, “Wow you must have an awful lot of free time on your hands!”

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