Take the 2-minute tour ×
English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I want to quote something from a song and say something like "this is just like in this song." What is the correct phrasing between the following sentences?

But, as song says, "now you have it, now you don't."
But, as THE song says, "now you have it, now you don't."

Based on some answers I added an extra question.

Would the following sentence be more correct?

But, just like in the song, "now you have it, now you don't"?

share|improve this question
add comment

2 Answers

up vote 1 down vote accepted

You are referring to a particular song, so you have to use the definite article

But, as the song says, "quote".

You would not use the article if you were talking more in general, for instance:

As pirates say, "arrrrr!"

share|improve this answer
add comment

But as THE song says, "quote" is the proper way to say it. =) you need an article there to reference the song.

However, a formal way to write it would be

This is reflected in the song through the line: "quote"

I hope this helps. =)

share|improve this answer
2  
This seems overly formal. I see no problem with either as the song says or as the song goes. –  jackgill Jun 29 '11 at 18:38
    
It is very common to use say in a figurative way. For instance: the recipe says to add 500ml of water, the book says xxxx, the software says it cannot find the file. –  nico Jun 29 '11 at 18:42
    
@jackgill, @nico, what the OP has written is perfectly fine, and I agree with both of you, I did answer the question. I'm just offering another take on it. –  tf.rz Jun 29 '11 at 18:44
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.