The Association – Cherish

First Hit #1: September 24, 1966

On first glance, Cherish is a really lovely little song of affection, great for young couples to dance to, perhaps at their wedding. The lovely, sugary harmonies, the light and airy arrangement, everything about loving the other person. A really nice and pleasant love song, right? Then you get to the lines “You don’t know how many times I’ve wished that I could mold you into someone who could cherish me as much as I cherish you.”

“Huh,” you might think. “That’s kind of an odd line. Why does he want to mold her?” Then comes verses about how he wishes he could be with the woman the song is directed towards, and just the way they’re phrased you begin to realize something. This song sounds kind of like it’s from the perspective of a stalker. The singer is clearly obsessed with this girl, and comes outright and says that he wants to mold her into someone who loves him. There’s also a tinge of jealousy and anger in the words. It sounds innocent and nice, great for your first dance, but there’s a darkness here that makes it a bit uncomfortable.

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