strike a sour note

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strike a sour note

To indicate, introduce, or allude to something particularly unfortunate, unpleasant, or disagreeable. You definitely struck a sour note when you brought up Dan's ex-girlfriends during your best man speech.
See also: note, sour, strike
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

strike a sour note

 and hit a sour note
Fig. to signify something unpleasant. Jane's sad announcement struck a sour note at the annual banquet. News of the accident hit a sour note in our holiday celebration.
See also: note, sour, strike
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

strike (or sound) a — note

express a feeling or view of a particular kind.
2000 Times John McCain …was expected to strike a hawkish note last night, calling for the upgrading of the Armed Forces.
See also: note, strike
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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References in periodicals archive ?
SHE might a have sweet smile but Jessica Wright strikes a sour note done up like a Quality Street toffee.
Softee trucks and other frozen dessert street vendors will have to stifle their happy calls within the next two years, as reported in New York Newsday, strikes a sour note. It's reported that the vendors plan to protest the Mayor's plan.
Why is it that so many Christians today are never disturbed or upset at worship (except, of course, when the acolyte does acrobatics, the soloist strikes a sour note, the liturgy runs long, or the kids are cranky and crying)?