Tuesday, 3 April 2007


when you were here before
couldn't look you in the eye
you're just like an angel
your skin makes me cry

you float like a feather
in a beautiful world
and I wish I was special
you're so fucking special

but I'm a creep, I'm a weirdo
what the hell am I doing here
I don't belong here

I don't care if it hurts
I want to have control
I want a perfect body
I want a perfect soul

I want you to notice
when I'm not around
you're so fucking special
I wish I was special

but I'm a creep, I'm a weirdo
what the hell am I doing here
I don't belong here

she's running out again
she's running out
She run run run runs

whatever makes you happy
whatever you want
you're so fucking special
I wish I was special

but I'm a creep, I'm a weirdo
what the hell am I doing here
I don't belong here
I don't belong here

The woman who inspired Radiohead's song "Creep" may never know just how special she is.

At least, that's what guitarist Jonny Greenwood would have the world believe. Singer Thom Yorke, who laments about being a "creep" and a "weirdo" in the presence of an angelic vision, will never see that woman again, Greenwood says.

In fact, they've never met.

That special woman turned up at this concert in Exeter, England, where Radiohead's members went to college, Greenwood, 21, explains. "Thom was mortified, because he's never spoken to her or anything. He just followed her for a couple of days or a week or whatever about two or three years ago. And here she was. He was very shaken up after that."

Mortification aside, "Creep" is actually a happy song, says Greenwood, whose band has just been booked for June 30 at Metro.
"It's about recognizing what you are."

So is Yorke, who wrote the lyrics, a creep or what?

"Oh, no!" Greenwood says. "He can be quite, ummm, childish, I guess. And he's very creative. But not a creep, exactly. No."

Creeps or not, Radiohead, whose members now live in Oxford, has struck quite a chord with its first single off of the album "Pablo Honey." "It's turned into one of those anthems, like Pink Floyd's 'The Wall,' " says disc jockey Carla Leonardo of WKQX-FM (101.1), who categorizes the tune as "anti-social."

Some have tagged "Creep" a "chick song," figuring its power-pop balladry appeals mainly to young women, "Q-101's" target audience. But Leonardo, who gets many phone requests for it, exclaims, "God, no!"

"Most people who call are guys and they all sound like weirdos!"

Greenwood says Radiohead "just knew 'Creep' was going to be successful."

He should know, after giving "Creep" its sharp little teeth in the form of some out-of-the-blue loud guitar bursts.

"I didn't like it. It stayed quiet," says Greenwood, referring to his initial opinion of the song. "So I hit the guitar hard - really hard."

Radiohead has won critical acclaim here, but all is not rosy in England, where, Greenwood says, "Creep" was much less warmly received. As in the United States, radio listeners hear that the woman is "very special"; on the CD, the phrase is "------- special."

Perhaps doing a sanitized, radio-friendly version is a "bit of a sellout," Greenwood says. "But then we thought, Sonic Youth has done it. We thought it wouldn't be that bad. But the British press, they weren't impressed."

Also unimpressed, but for different reasons, is Mother Greenwood, who has another son, Colin, also in the band.

"My mom wants me to be a lawyer," Greenwood says. "Occasionally I play the music for her when she demands to hear it and she always just says, 'Who is that singing? I don't like the singing.' And then she says 'Who's doing all that bumpety-bump noise?' It's all noise backing up horrible singing as far as she's concerned. She's not a show-biz mother."

But, no doubt, she's very special.
--Chicago Sun-Times, June 7, 1993

In a way, all creeps are outsiders to some degree - so perhaps that's why the British band Radiohead's "Creep," with its insightful lyrics praising individuality, has become the anthem these days.

Beside celebrating standing up for individual rights, " 'Creep' is a celebration of the creep as well," says Radiohead's "polite guitar" player, Ed O'Brien, 25. "A celebration of all those feelings of people feeling like an outsider, an outcast.

"People say, 'I heard "Creep" and I know those lyrics were written about me, that it's about me.' And that's wonderful."
--1993 June 24 | Washington Times

The song, [Thom] explains, isn't about how he feels, but is simply an observation of a character. Ditto for "Prove Yourself," which takes the theme a step further.

"People have immediately said that we're a down band, that we write exceptionally depressing songs simply because of 'Creep,' " he says. "But I'm not actually trying to discuss directly the personal sort of teen-age melodrama."

The irony is that as fans read their own meanings into the song, the effect has been to make Yorke, in some ways, a bit depressed.

"These songs are very personal," he says. "But 'Creep' has been taken into so many contexts that it's everybody else's song now,
and I have to let that lie, sadly."
--Los Angeles Times, August 15, 1993

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