SONG BACKSTORY: Does “Put the Lime in the Coconut” Make Any Sense?
Q: What is the song COCONUT supposed to be about? "Put the lime in the coconut" etc. doesn't seem to make sense.
A: A guy buys a coconut for a dime; his sister buys a lime for another dime; she mixes the two together, drinks it and gets nauseous. She calls the doctor late at night and wakes him up; she asks what can she take for her bellyache; he tells her to mix the same two items together again and drink. She whines & complains so much that he finally says “call me in the morning and I'll tell you what to do.” An ordinary, simple premise that became a very popular song! COCONUT was a #8 song in the summer of '72 for Harry Nilsson; he wrote the word "coconut" on a matchbook, figuring the word might be made into a song. Upon finding the matchbook sometime later, he finished the song and to his surprise, became a hit single. Probably the WORST thing that happened with this tune is when Coca-Cola borrowed it for their Coke-with-lime commercials, re-phrasing it as "you put the lime in the Coke, you nut." GEEEEEZZZZ.....that hurts.