Life As We Blow It: Good songs ruined

Song: “The Little Drummer Boy,” Harry Simeone/Henry Onerati/Katherine Davis

Ruined By: Chinese water torture-like repetition

Method of Ruination: Okay, yeah, it was emotionally compelling the first 4,826 times. But eventually its tiresome length, redundant nature and quietly pummeling refrain combined to produce something like psychotic rage. Seriously, I think it’s what sets off Black Friday trampedes. Not even Bing and Bowie could salvage that shit.

What I Feel When I Hear It Now: An overwhelming urge to do violence to innocents. Merry Christmas.

Song: “Everlong,” Foo Fighters

Ruined By: Greed Engine

Method of Ruination: Greed Engine was a local three-piece in the late ’90s and, I think, early ’00s — great guys, some decent original songs, I’m not bagging on their usual milieu. But at one show at St. Pete’s State Theatre, they took on this classic, textured and evocative Grohl & Co. song and, well, let’s just say there were apparently multiple aural chicken bones in the arrangement, because they choked on it with authority. I can still listen to “Everlong,” but I can’t listen to “Everlong” without remembering that performance.

What I Feel When I Hear It Now: “Man, this is an awesome song. Remember when Greed Engine butchered it?”

Song: Every track on every Beastie Boys album except Paul’s Boutique

Ruined By: Maturation

Method of Ruination: I grew up. I loved ’em once, too, but occasional glimmers of lyrical brilliance aside, the majority of the Beasties’ catalog is the province of fratty man-boys for whom the times of their lives are well and sadly behind them. If you can’t write music as good as Check Your Head or program music as good as Hello Nasty through a Jager fugue at 3 a.m. after a high school reunion, get a CAT scan immediately. Put down the bong and listen to your girlfriend — it’s really just not that good.

What I Feel When I Hear It Now: Like making snarky, dismissive comments about the Beastie Boys’ catalog.

Song: “Jelly Roll,” Blue Murder

Ruined By: Whatsername

Method of Ruination: I totally thought it was our song, until she wouldn’t come to the window while I stood there in the rain and tossed pebbles at her window.

What I Feel Like When I Hear It Now: I haven’t heard “Jelly Roll” since the summer of 1989, and I can’t even remember the girl’s name, but I bet if it came on the radio I could recall both the girl’s name and a suffocating sense of my adolescent world collapsing in upon itself; then again, I could just be like, “Oh, yeah,” and enjoy the sepia melancholy. Or realize that “Jelly Roll” was just terrible on its own all along.

Song: “Sweetness,” Jimmy Eat World

Ruined By: Signal 76. See “Everlong.”

Everybody has those songs that they used to love but just can’t stand to hear anymore. A painful reminder of a previous relationship, an inextricable association with a life-changing event, the simple passage of time — it could be any reason, really. In honor of Creative Loafing’s Music Issue, here’s a brief list of a few tunes that now mean something totally different to me than they did when I originally enjoyed them.

Song: “Opiate,” Tool

Ruined By: My band Smack, and its fans

Method of Ruination: I fronted a grungy-ass band in the early ’90s that covered this marvelous tune, and, obviously, it was better than a lot of our originals. Tool was still pretty obscure at the time, and a lot of folks assumed the song was ours; it became an oft-requested favorite, bruising my fragile ego, cracking my already angst-overloaded youthful artist’s heart and contributing indirectly to the band’s breakup.

What I Feel When I Hear It Now: Wistful nostalgia quickly strangled by flaring embers of bitterness.

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