Adding to the laundry list of musicians writing open-letters to the pop-culture fiasco that is Miley Cyrus – Sinead O’Connor‘s on her fifth manic sentence meltdown – whispy indie-folk poster child, Sufjan Stevens, dedicated some Tumblr space today to play grammar police, pegged around Cyrus’ recently dropped, Bangerz, and the single “#GetItRight.” He takes up issue with the use of “laying” found in the third verse of the song:
Dear Miley. I can’t stop listening to #GetItRight (great song, great message, great body), but maybe you need a quick grammar lesson. One particular line causes concern: “I been laying in this bed all night long.” Miley, technically speaking, you’ve been LYING, not LAYING, an irregular verb form that should only be used when there’s an object, i.e. “I been laying my tired booty on this bed all night long.” Whatever. I’m not the best lyricist, but you know what I mean. #Get It Right The Next Time.
More of a joke on the hullabaloo surrounding Cyrus’ sexual prowess, Stevens goes on to actually praise her, citing that “even Faulkner messed it up,” and that she’s “the Queen, grammatically and anatomically speaking,” among other hilarious compliments, followed by a series of cryptic Tumblr ephmera like a picture of a hotdog and the caption “death,” ending the post ceremoniously with O’Connor’s original open-letter that started it all.
Stevens, not a stranger to type and grammer nerdness, recently caused a tiff with post-punkers Savages, and their unforgivable “awkward italics” on the cover of their debut album. Again, all in jest, really. But he didn’t rename his blog ‘The World is Savages’ for that one, as he did for the ‘Queen’:
So really this comes down to the age old question: what’s more sexy, grammatically correct lyrics, or Miley Cyrus? The lyric, verse and tuneage to “#GetItRight” for reference: [LISTEN]
I been laying in this bed all night long
Don’t you think it’s time to get it on
But we gotta get it right, we can’t get it wrong
Don’t you want to feel this fire before it’s gone