Category Archives: lyrics

Words to Images: Next Set of Daily Questions

Tomorrow will be the last day that the daily question will focus on Duran Duran lyrics.  Over the last few months or so, our questions have asked fans about which songs feature the best lyrics and then what are those fabulous lyrics.  Let me offer a recap of the results.  First, what song has the best lyrics on each album, according to our voters?

  • Self-titled:  Careless Memories
  • Rio:  New Religion
  • Seven and the Ragged Tiger:  The Seventh Stranger
  • Notorious:  A Matter of Feeling
  • Big Thing:  Do You Believe in Shame
  • Liberty:  Serious
  • The Wedding Album:  Ordinary World
  • Medazzaland:  Out of my Mind
  • Pop Trash:  Someone Else Not Me
  • Astronaut:  What Happens Tomorrow
  • Red Carpet Massacre:  Falling Down
  • All You Need Is Now:  Before the Rain
  • Paper Gods:  What Are the Chances
  • B-Sides:  Secret Oktober

Now, I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t stop to analyze those results.  First thing I noticed when I glanced at these results is how often more of the ballad-type songs were chosen as the ones with the best lyrics.  Some examples of that include the Seventh Stranger, Do You Believe in Shame, Ordinary World, Falling Down, etc.  The other way to say that is the more upbeat or rockier songs were often not chosen with the exception of Careless Memories.  The second thing I noticed is that frequently the songs chosen were the most well-known songs from the album.  There are many examples of this like Someone Else Not Me, Serious, and Ordinary World.  My last big observation is probably the most interesting one.  Over time, people have talked about Simon’s lyrics and how they used to be really obscure and poetic.  Frequently, that statement is followed by the idea that those types of lyrics are missed.  Many of those songs were not not chosen.  For instance, the Chauffeur wasn’t chosen.  There are a lot more poetic lyrics than Someone Else Not Me on the Pop Trash album, in my opinion.  It seems to me that people prefer those lyrics that they can relate to easily.

Let’s take a look at the lyrics chosen from those songs:

  • Careless Memories:  “On the table, signs of love lies scattered”
  • New Religion:  “I might just be right this time (searching for the undeniable truth that a man is just a fool)
  • The Seventh Stranger:  “Echoes growing in the heart of twilight”
  • A Matter of Feeling:  “Steal away in the morning, love’s already history to you”
  • Do You Believe in Shame:  “And it may seem selfish now but I’ll hold on to the memory until all this fear is washed away”
  • Serious:  “Don’t worry if you’re confused, we all tend to be sometimes”
  • Ordinary World:  “Still I can’t escape the ghost of you”
  • Out of my Mind:  “Without you what’s left to believe”
  • Someone Else Not Me:  “The hardest thing is to let go”
  • What Happens Tomorrow:  “There are times we punish those who we need the most”
  • Falling Down:  “Why has the sky turned grey”
  • Before the Rain:  “Lost hearts and words that are spoken to the wind”
  • What Are the Chances:  “Is it out of choice that you’re next to me or just the aftermath of moments as they pass”
  • Secret Oktober:  “And smile when the butterfly escapes the killing jar”

As of right now, we don’t know what lyric will be decided to be the best.  There are three lyrics left that people are choosing from, including the favorite lyric from Do You Believe in Shame, What Happens Tomorrow or the Seventh Stranger.  It will be interesting to see which one will win.

After that, we need to make a shift.  We have been focused on words for a long time.  It is time to appreciate the visual, the image, the videos.  While we have asked about favorite videos before, this time, we want to know which video is the sexiest, the funniest, the most clever, etc.  What should we ask when it comes to the videos?  Is there a question we should be asking?  If so, please let us know.  I, for one, am looking forward to the next set of questions!

-A

If You Know What It’s All About: Lyrics and Meanings

Over Thanksgiving, my oldest was at home. She is studying choreography in school, and this semester she is working on a final movement project. She showed me the piece she’s been developing, explaining that this is kind of a rough draft for a much longer and more involved idea she wants to work on for her senior year. She didn’t give me a lot of explanation beyond that and wanted me to watch and then talk with her afterwards.

I watched the work, and vaguely came up with the thought that the dance (this piece is pretty modern, as opposed to jazz, ballet, or even contemporary) must be about inner and outer struggles. I shared this with her and she brightened, saying that she was glad I recognized the basic concept of the inner and outer forces. Then we talked more about what she hoped to convey.  The story she shared with me was wildly different from my thoughts. I was a little dismayed because it all seemed pretty vague, and I shared this with her. Heather explained that she’s come to the realization that the actual meanings of the dances aren’t what matter. She’s not concerned about whether someone recognizes the full story she’s sharing. She just wants to convey the appropriate feeling. This confused me, because I always thought the whole point of choreography was to tell a story.  If the audience doesn’t “get” the story, what is the real point then?

I thought about this piece she’s in for an upcoming show. It’s called “Scanners”, and I have to say – it is very violent and animalistic. When I see it (I’ve seen her in it twice now), I have to try to forget that Heather is my daughter and just take in the piece for what it is. I’m actually amused at the thought that her grandparents are going to see her perform it, because the movements are territorial and savage. I can see that when I’m watching. I can hear it through the breathing on stage. The music doesn’t even convey those feelings – it’s all in the dance itself. But I don’t know the story of the dance. Not even a little. I just know that when I see it, it reminds me of how insensitive we’ve grown towards one another. I always say we’re losing our humanity. This dance conveys that feeling. I thought about that as Heather continued to explain choreography to me.

Then she said something that made everything clear.

In art, it isn’t about getting the meaning right. When we see a painting and it creates an emotion, or when we hear a song and it makes us feel something – it doesn’t matter what the artist originally intended, or what story they wanted to share. It’s about what the viewer feels. This is why artists don’t readily share what a painting is really about (some might, but most do not). It’s left to interpretation. Why? Because even though the artist used the work as a way to tell a story – our heart responds to a song or a dance work because of what WE think it means. Why would an artist want to precondition you to feel something rather than allow you to experience that emotion organically on your own? That would have the potential to change the entire encounter, because the perception would not be self-owned or pure.

As Heather and I discussed this, of course my mind leapt to Duran Duran. How many times over the years has Simon said that he doesn’t like to explain his lyrics? Granted, much of that may be out of a concern for his own privacy, but I have also read and heard Simon say many times that he wants the listener to be able to have their own meanings for the songs.

I can remember talking with someone about “Finest Hour”. I explained what the song meant to me. At one time it was my favorite song on Astronaut. This person said that the “real” story was that the song was about the US, specifically about the president at the time (George W. Bush). After hearing that, I never quite enjoyed the song in the same way, and I almost wish I didn’t know what the lyrics meant. It changed my perception entirely.

Another example I can give is even more recent. A few weeks back, the band celebrated the anniversary of Medazzaland, and Simon discussed the meaning of the song, “Who Do You Think You Are?”, saying that it was about his relationship with Warren. I knew several people that openly said they wished Simon never said anything about that, because it made them hear the song differently. Still others admonished Simon for writing about his relationship with Warren at all.

In both cases, listeners heard the song, and came away with their own perceptions and meanings, whether those were positive or even negative. It completely changes the way we hear a song or the way it makes us feel when we’re told the true meanings of the lyrics. I can’t say for certain if this is why Simon doesn’t like to share the exact meanings of the lyrics he’s written, but I think I understand the possible reasons even more so now than before.

There is no right or wrong “answer” for what a painting, picture, dance work, song, or even a book or poem might mean. We are meant to come away with our own feelings and meanings based on our own life experiences and perceptions. That’s a tough pill to swallow for those who operate in terms of black and white and want to know what Simon was thinking.  For the many who, like me, fall into the grey area – this is bliss. The songs can mean whatever we need them to mean. It’s a gift from the artist to the rest of us.

-R

 

 

 

 

Examining the Promise

This week’s lyric day search landed me on Arcadia’s song, The Promise.  As I looked over the lyrics, I realized that instead of analyzing just one line in relationship to myself or my life, I should look at the entire song.

First, let’s take a look at the lyrics:

Whose tears on a gaping voice
Who’s stretching arms match
The hunger of mine
There lips will they never join
But always draw me closer
And further entwined
With a promise dealer understand
All freedoms fade away
To a point of view
Where many different pathways meet
And we’re standing on this precipice
With nothing much to gain save
But the deep blue screams
Of falling dreams
With our next move
Heaven hide your eyes
Heaven’s eyes will never dry
The shades of a thousand steel
Come flashing by my face
In the fury of war
In desolation and abandoned fields
The hungry make their stand
When they’ll stand for no more
Hear the passion in their voices
See the heaven in their eyes
Their hopes and schemes are waiting
Dreams of less than paradise
And sometimes we make promises
We never mean to keep
For blackmail is the only deal
A promise dealer sees
Heaven hide your eyes
Heaven’s eyes will never dry

Hmm…as soon as I read those lyrics, I think about what I teach each and every day.  As I’m sure that most of you reading this blog know, outside of my life as a Duranie, I teach high school.  Specifically, I teach United States History from Reconstruction through World War II (1865-1945).  To me, this song could be about teaching history, any country’s  history as there are many moments of grief, anger as well as hope.  Just yesterday, I taught my students about the Wounded Knee massacre that took place on December 29, 1890, in which about 250 members of the Lakota Sioux tribe were killed by the United States army.  There is a great and famous quote by a member of that tribe stating the Wounded Knee was the end of a people’s dream (Native Americans).  The lyrics definitely could fit that event.

If you spend any time at all looking at human history, many tears can be shed as the history of humanity is filled with horrors, tragedies and loss.  Of course, history also has moments of greatness, progress, hope.  There are so many lines from this Arcadia song that captures the feeling well, including “Heaven’s eyes will never dry,” “in the fury of war,” “the hungry make their stand when they’ll stand for no more,” and so much more.  The video, I think also, fits this theme, which you can see here.

When I look further into this song, I found an Ask Katy question on the band’s official website:

January 12th, 2001

Hello Katy, I was wondering, who wrote the lyrics to the song, “The Promise” on the Arcadia album? Also, what was the inspiration for the songwriter? Thank you for your time!

SIMON WROTE IT. “I DID. IT’S ABOUT THE WESTERN WORLD’S BETRAYAL OF THE THIRD WORLD. s”

According to the Song Meanings website, there was another Ask Katy question about this song in which case Simon supposedly responded with, “The Promise is about all that’s worst and all that’s best about humanity.”  My response to both of these quotes is fascination.  If this is the case, Simon views history similarly to how I not only view it but teach it.  This will make me listen to the song in a very different way now.

Speaking of history, Arcadia came out in 1985 at the time that a lot of people, including many fans and members of the press thought of Duran as nothing more than pretty party boys.  Some people saw them as superficial and only looking for a good time.  The lyrics to this song, in particular, really calls into question that assumption.  Clearly, Simon was not just about having fun.  He did think about the world around him and even wrote about it.  This makes the negative assumptions about the band even more infuriating to me.  Obviously, a lot of critics and a lot of the public missed that Simon and the rest were a lot smarter and more aware than what they assumed.

-A

 

Words, Playing Me…

I have been thinking about lyrics a lot lately.  I think it started from this set of questions of the day we have been doing.  First, we ask our readers which song has the best lyrics per album.  (We are starting Liberty, by the way!)  Then, we ask people to pick THE best lyric or line from the song that they determined had the best lyrics overall.  Eventually, we will compare all of the favorite lyrics.  Beyond the question of the day, I have also been listening to the new Killers album and trying to bond with it.  One song, in particular, has caught my attention due to the lyrics.  The song is Rut and it definitely fits how I have been feeling at/with work.  Lines like, “I’m climbing but the walls keep stacking up” or “I’ve done my best defending but the punches are starting to land” make me feel as if someone is putting my feelings into words.  This personal connection to the lyrics have made me want to listen to the song a lot.

When I think back to my lifetime of listening to music, I recognize that the importance of lyrics has grown on me.  When I think back to falling for Duran, I think of songs like Save a Prayer and the Reflex.  When I think about those songs, lyrically, they make me laugh.  Save a Prayer is obviously about a one-night stand–something that my 9 year old self could not relate or connect to!  The Reflex, on the other hand, just seemed silly to me as a kid.  That song’s lyrics, though, are ones that people still seek understanding of.  In fact, our most viewed blog post of all time is the one where I pondered what the heck the Reflex is really all about.  I know that I did not connect to the song in 1984 because of the lyrics, no matter what I thought they meant.  No, in 1984, it was all about whether or not the chorus was catchy and the video showed cute guys.

Yet, now, when I think about the Duran songs that I have connected with, I think of the ones that captured something in its lyrics that I can relate to.  The first song that comes to my mind about that is Before the Rain.  The verse that spoke to me in 2010 was this one:  Little pin-pricks
And how my ears bleed
On the bomb ticks that is my heartbeat
In every life-flash
In every car crash
I hear the silence waiting to fall

Why did it speak to me?  In December of 2010, I had to say good-bye to a beloved pet, Othello, and then 10 days later, I said good-bye to my grandma, my lone living grandparent.  My heartbeat felt the pain of the silence that follows death and I connected with it deeply.  To me, it spoke of grief.  Is that what the song is about?  I doubt it but there was enough there that made me feel like I was not alone in my grief–that someone else understood.

The same thing is true with Duran’s latest album, Paper Gods.  I remember listening through it a few times before I really tuned into the lyrics.  The song that caught my attention then?  Last Night in the City, believe it or not, the exact opposite of Before the Rain.  The lyrics described exactly what touring means and is like to me.  It is where we get connected, whether that connection is with the band and the fans or with fans to fans.  What is funny is that Rhonda connected with the lyrics around the same time.  I have fond memories of a text message exchange one evening as we traded favorite lyrics back and forth and talked about not only what they could mean but, more importantly, but how and why they spoke to us.  It was at that moment that I knew that I could and would bond with that album.

What about the rest of you?  How much do lyrics matter?  Do the lyrics need to speak to you in order to  love a song?  Likewise, if a song’s lyrics are silly, can you still bond with the tune?

-A

Countdown to Paper Gods – NINE!!!

Nine days!

I am not even completely sure what day of the week it is, but I know I’ve got nine days to go until Paper Gods can be held and loved by all…. We won’t discuss my priorities, but can we talk lyrics today?!?

Rest assured, I am not going to post lyrics to unheard songs…but what about the lyrics to the songs the band has already released? Another effective way to spend time before Paper Gods is released would be to read the lyrics and memorize them, so that way when that wonderful day arrives that you’re at a Duran show, you know the words and can belt ’em right along with the band!

Disclaimer: Since these lyrics are not from liner notes or the band’s website, they are a “best guess” by whomever took the time to transcribe them. I am not certifying that they are 100% correct, or that I personally checked them…and I definitely am not responsible for words that may not sound like words  (“hotting”)….I don’t write the lyrics, I just post ’em. 

Paper Gods

(chanted by Mr. Hudson)
Oh, the paper gods in the sky of gray
All the fools in town are ruling today, today

(Simon)
Bow to the paper Gods in a world that is paper-thin,
Fools in town are ruling now
Bleeding from paper cuts, money for head shots
Fools leading
Who needs it?

Hey, you’re gonna want it all the talking man declares
Go running to be first in line for what nobody cares!
Then next thing you must have find piece with matching bag
It’s nothing to be glad about or sad when you forget about it
I’d rather racing or go run around the streets (not sure of this line)
The slaver in a sweatshop,
Putting trainers on your feet
I’m walking through the rain, oblivious to pain
To shelter from the blame without a reason to complain about it
Oh oh oh, don’t complain about it
Oh oh oh, don’t complain about it
Oh oh oh, forget about it
Oh oh oh oh

Bow to the paper gods in a world that is paper-thin,
Fools in town are ruling now
Bleeding from paper cuts, money for head shots
Fools leading
Who needs it?

She’s staring out in underwear from your computer screen
It’s all self-dirty cash we can wash it clean (??)
So hang it out online, confess and you feel fine
and if you got the time to spare we want to know
Which name you’re wearing
And when the final curtain finally comes down
We’ll all be in the party room no wiser as to how
The total human race, became a basket case
It’s nothing to lose face about,
It’s really not a place to doubt it

Bow to the paper gods in a world that is paper-thin,
Fools in town are ruling now
Bleeding from paper cuts, money for head shots
Fools leading
Who needs it?

Paper gods falling down
paper house, paper town
Paper gods falling down
paper world is falling down
Paper gods falling down
paper house, paper town
Paper gods falling down
paper world is falling down, falling down, falling down, falling down, falling down, falling down, falling down

Bow to the paper Gods in a world that is paper-thin,
Fools in town are ruling now
Bleeding from paper cuts, they go for the money shot
The fools leading
Who needs them?

all the paper gods, in a sky of grey

all the fools in town, are ruling today, today

(fade out)

Last Night in the City

I’m not gonna sleep tonight, til the morning fills the sky
No ones getting left behind, this our time, this our time

We gotta live this night. Yeah, living like it’s our last night
Cuz nobody cares, if there’s no tomorrow

I’m not thinking ‘bout the future (the future)
it’s somewhere out there
We’re all busy being human (human)
we remember
Hearts beating all around me (together)
now, they’re surrounding me
This is how we get connected,
running out the shadows into light

We gonna live this night, yeah,
living like it’s our last night
Cuz nobody cares, if there’s no tomorrow
We gotta love this night, yeah,
loving like it’s our last night

Stars up in the air, yeah,
it’s our last night in the city

I’ve been traveling around now
big world, with my brothers
Always moving to a new town,
no time to put the roots down
We can’t stop believing (can’t stop)
no we believe in you
Cuz when you’re standing in the spotlight
the only thing that matters is tonight

We gotta live this night, yeah,
living like it’s our last night

Cuz nobody cares, if there’s no tomorrow
We gotta love this night, yeah,
loving like it’s our last night

Stars up in the air, yeah,
it’s our last night in the city

I’m not gonna sleep tonight, til the morning fills the sky
No ones getting left behind, this our time, this our time

We gotta live this night, yeah,
living like it’s our last night

Cuz nobody cares, if there’s no tomorrow
We gotta love this night, yeah,
loving like it’s our last night

Stars up in the air, oh yeah,
it’s our last night in the city

Yeah, last night in the city
Yeah, last night in the city

You Kill Me With Silence
Your thin ice,
I should be on solid ground
And oh so quiet vice,
I can hear that cracking sound
But I remain,
despite your deadly aim
To drive another lad insane
When you won’t speak,
my name

You kill me with silence
That’s your style girl, you’re letting me know
This deafening silence, the only reason you’re in control (you’re in control)
It’s emotional violence I can’t breathe now but I can’t let go
You kill me with silence

True to life,
things are hotting up in here  

If I had a knife,
you could cut the atmosphere

Something else,
I like this bed of nails

That’s what I tell myself
Couldn’t be much worse
in hell

You kill me with silence
That’s your style girl you’re letting me know
This deafening silence, the only reason that you’re in control
It’s an emotional violence, I can’t breathe now but I can’t let go
You kill me with silence

Pressure Off

Stepping out, stepping out, stepping out; jumping off X3
Pressure off, pressure off; pressure, pressure, pressure off

The past is another country
The present will never last
The future it’s still tomorrow
Are we living too fast
Searchlight the crowd I fix on your face
I know it well, but it’s a dream I can’t place
Something is happening to me
Maybe it’s happening to you, you, you, you

Everybody everywhere
Feel it in the air, oh yeah
It’s time to take the pressure off
Everybody everywhere
Step out into the future
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off

Stepping stepping stepping
It’s time to take the pressure off

We’re swimming with the rat-race
We’re running against the tide
And it’s every-body’s business
When there’s nowhere to hide
Searchlight the crowd I’m fixed onto you
There is a way out of this into the blue
Something is happening to me
Maybe it’s happening to you, you, you, you

Everybody everywhere
Feel it in the air, oh yeah
It’s time to take the pressure off
Everybody everywhere
Step out into the future
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off

Stepping out, stepping out, stepping out; jumping off X3
Pressure off, pressure off; pressure, pressure, pressure off

I’m lost don’t wanna be found
I’m not gonna be down be down
Outside looking into myself
Just me I couldn’t be anyone else
Is it bad when you’re feeling this good?
Are we all misunderstood?
It’s fine going out of my mind, going out of my mind, going out of my mind

Everybody everywhere
Feel it in the air, oh yeah
It’s time to take the pressure off
Everybody everywhere
Step out into the future
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now

Step out into the future
Jump off into the future
Step out into the future
Jump off into the future
Step out into the future

What Are the Chances?

Any other day and you might’ve gone walking by
Without a second look
Any other way but I’m still mystified
I’m just trying to change my luck
Staring out the world and waiting for the one
But the world won’t look away
The world does not explain

So…what are the chances?
We’ll never know
If we take it for granted
A diamond explodes
What are the chances

Playing with your life or is it destiny
Which sets you on a path
Is it out of choice that you’re here next to me
Or just the aftermath
Of moments as they pass

So…what are the chances?
We’ll never know
If we take it for granted
A diamond explodes
What are the chances
We are lost in the flow
And looking for answers

So…what are the chances?
We’ll never know
If we take it for granted
A diamond explodes
What are the chances
We are lost in the flow
And looking for answers

Alright, you’ve got the lyrics, I’ve assigned homework….and we’ve got nine days left.

Only nine.  Nine feels a lot more reasonable than say, 1,095 days, yes?  (Interestingly enough, it will have been just over that amount – 1,109 to be exact, between the day the tour ended in 2012 abruptly due to Nick’s illness and release day for Paper Gods)

(and yes, I am a little embarrassed that I spent time figuring that out. I need a vacation.)

Cheers! -R

Everybody Everwhere…Lyrics to Pressure Off

I can’t remember the last time I had the lyrics to a song before I heard the song. Can you? Delightfully, Duranies…we happen to have the lyrics to Pressure Off, and as you may have guessed, I’ve been scouring over each word since I first read them online.

Yesterday morning, I did my normal perusal on Facebook, only to see that a Genero.tv contest had been posted for Duran Duran’s new single….that-is-supposed-to-come-out-some-time-this-week…named Pressure Off. (it’s now Wednesday. Not that I’m counting…or that I’m at all impatient. Right?) The contest explains that they are looking for a fan to create a “lyric video” to Pressure Off.

First of all, what exactly IS a lyric video?  Is it a music video? Is a video that is supposed to use the lyrics to create a story?  Something else entirely?? Secondly, I am not at all talented in the art of filmmaking. I’m sure that’s not much of a surprise given my previous questions. However, if anyone needs blogs written….you know where to find me.

No matter, I was off to Genero.tv purely because I’m nosey….AND because friends happened to mention that if you registered, you could hear a 38-second snippet of the song. I’ve done a lot of things for this band, and registering for Genero.tv in order to hear a portion of a song we were told would be coming this week is no problem. I didn’t think twice. Once I heard the song (and it still makes me wiggle in my seat, it’s that catchy!), I noticed that the lyrics to Pressure Off were also readily available.

You know I wrote them down.  Since I couldn’t copy/paste – I wrote them out so that I could read them, then I sent them to Amanda, who else am I going to hash out lyric meanings with??

Before we get into meanings, if there really are any to be gleaned from the words…I have to ask about getting those lyrics to begin with. I must admit I am a little surprised we have those, but no song, even though it would seem that the release is only days away. I was reading an article earlier this week that claimed iTunes (UK) would carry the song as of June 15 – but that didn’t happen. Tuesday came and went here in the use with nary a mention, and the song still does not seem to be available anywhere. Yet I’ve got these lyrics to Pressure Off. I don’t necessarily think any harm was done in getting the lyrics early (at least I’ll know the words when the time comes for me to blare the music in my car on the way to the store!), I just have to wonder what strategy, if any, was involved with them being “out there” earlier than the song. Surely The Powers That Be must have realized that by putting them up on the Genero.tv site that fans would undoubtedly put them up for others to see elsewhere.  I think overall, it is probably trivial for fans to have the lyrics to Pressure Off first, but I doubt I’m alone when I say that it seems odd.  It could be that the timing for the single is a little off, or the contest went up early, and I suspect that once the single finally becomes available, none of this will matter.

So about those lyrics:

Stepping out, stepping out, stepping out; jumping off X3
Pressure off, pressure off; pressure, pressure, pressure off

The past is another country
The present will never last
The future it’s still tomorrow
Are we living too fast
Searchlight the crowd I fix on your face
I know it well, but it’s a dream I can’t place
Something is happening to me
Maybe it’s happening to you, you, you, you

Everybody everywhere
Feel it in the air, oh yeah
It’s time to take the pressure off
Everybody everywhere
Step out into the future
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off

Stepping stepping stepping
It’s time to take the pressure off

We’re swimming with the rat-race
We’re running against the tide
And it’s every-body’s business
When there’s nowhere to hide
Searchlight the crowd I’m fixed onto you
There is a way out of this into the blue
Something is happening to me
Maybe it’s happening to you, you, you, you

Everybody everywhere
Feel it in the air, oh yeah
It’s time to take the pressure off
Everybody everywhere
Step out into the future
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off

Stepping out, stepping out, stepping out; jumping off X3
Pressure off, pressure off; pressure, pressure, pressure off

I’m lost don’t wanna be found
I’m not gonna be down be down
Outside looking into myself
Just me I couldn’t be anyone else
Is it bad when you’re feeling this good?
Are we all misunderstood?
It’s fine going out of my mind, going out of my mind, going out of my mind

Everybody everywhere
Feel it in the air, oh yeah
It’s time to take the pressure off
Everybody everywhere
Step out into the future
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now
It’s time to take the pressure off
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh it’s up to you now

Step out into the future
Jump off into the future
Step out into the future
Jump off into the future
Step out into the future

As most know, Amanda and I like to read the lyrics and see if there’s really any meaning there. Both of us agree that to some extent, there seems to be a message in there – maybe a reminder not to take ourselves so seriously. Take the pressure off.  With lines like “searchlight the crowd I fix on your face; I know it well, but it’s a dream I can’t place” (I guess if you ever thought the band might recognize you – they probably do, they just don’t know from where! Makes sense, really!)  I especially like “We’re swimming with the rat-race; we’re running against the tide; And it’s every-body’s business when there’s nowhere to hide.”  If that doesn’t sound like life on social media or life when you’re famous….I just don’t know.

On a purely personal note, both Amanda and I felt like the song spoke to us as a good reminder that during that time while the band was in the studio, she and I put FAR too much pressure on ourselves. Taking a break was the best thing she and I could have done. Before I get hate mail, I’m not saying the song was written for us (Um, no.),  I just think there’s a message in there for everyone if you care to listen and hear it.

I really like the message I drew from the song, but I’m curious to see what others may have gotten…and yes, I realize this might be much easier after the single is finally, blessedly released and we’re all put out of our misery.  I know. 🙂  Until then, comment away…and hey, is anyone out there (pun intended!) going to participate in that contest?

-R

He Turns on the Animal

I have the most random thoughts driving to and from work.  I usually have my music on shuffle to keep things interesting (and awake!).  This week, I was driving to work and what songs came on, back to back?  Union of the Snake and The Man Who Stole a Leopard.  This got me thinking.  No, what I was thinking wasn’t that I need new music…although I won’t argue against that.  I thought about how many animal references there are in Duran Duran songs, either in the title or in a song’s lyrics.  Now, it is pretty common for artists of any form to have common themes.  For painters, the theme might be what they paint.  For poets, it might be the use of some specific type of figurative language.  It seems to me that Simon has certain “themes” in his lyrics.  One of them is definitely animals.  Do they represent something?  Maybe.  Sometimes.  Here are the animals I could think of and some theories about what they might stand for, if anything.

Wolf (Hungry Like the Wolf) – The wolf could be the obvious—someone looking for a sexual partner but I also read that the wolf could represent fame, according to one’s person interpretation.

Snake (Union of the Snake) – The snake could be one’s subconscious or the representation of sin.

Leopard (The Man Who Stole a Leopard) – The leopard could be a woman.  I also like thinking of the leopard representing fandom.

Tiger (Tiger Tiger and Seven and the Ragged Tiger) – I read that the tiger stood for success on Duran’s wikipedia page.  Is that possible?

Lizard (New Moon on Monday) – Any ideas on this one?

Bird (Rio) – Could this be as obvious as it seems and be about a woman?

Fox (My Own Way) – This one seems straight forward.

Seagulls (New Religion) – Could they represent a crowd circling someone accused of a crime?  Thoughts on this one?

Seagulls (The Chauffeur) – It is interesting the Simon twice made reference to seagulls in one album.

Monkey (Notorious) – Another straight forward one?

Palomino – I did a whole blog about this one, which you can read here.

Cat (All Along the Water) – Another one that seems obvious.

Dog (Drowning Man) – No interpretation needed here.

Weasle and bird (To Whom It May Concern) – I assume that “weasle” is like the weasel.  Weasel often represents someone sneaky.  A dicky word is a small bird.

Coyote (Midnight Sun) – Reference to the cartoon of Road Runner??

Dinosaurs (Undergoing Treatment) – Reference to extinction.

Chicken (Bedroom Toys) – No comment on my part about this one!

Starlings (Chains) – Another bird reference.

Any other references to animals that I didn’t think of?  I know that there are references to insects but I didn’t include those.  Any ideas on interpretations?

-A

Interpretations of Dirty Great Monster

It has been a long time since I have taken a good long look at a song’s lyrics and tried to figure out what the heck it is about.  Now, when I started doing this, I asked people to give song suggestions.  I’m still moving through those original one, but am open to getting others.  One song that was mentioned was “Dirty Great Monster” off the Red Carpet Massacre album.  Now, this isn’t a song that has gotten much attention ever.  It wasn’t one of the songs Timbaland was involved with and it wasn’t a single.  It wasn’t played live except for those Broadway shows, in which the entire album was played.  I don’t have much of a connection with it, but I was super fortunate to see it on Broadway as they had the most amazing visuals for this song.  Frankly, I’m still sad that we won’t get to see those again as they were worth the price of admission, for sure.  I did find one clip that showed some of those visuals, but nothing beat seeing them in person.

So, what about the lyrics to this song?

There’s a dirty great monster in this house
We pretend that it’s not there
And there’s no escape from its grip
But nobody seems to care

Do you ever wonder
About the days when we were straight?
But daddy got the hunger
So much to hide, we learn to lie

So watch yourself in the hallway
You’re not supposed to know
‘Cause we’re all afraid of each other
We’re the victims in this show

Well, do you ever wonder
About the days when we were straight?
When daddy got the hunger
Too much to hide, we learn to lie

Silently outnumbered
We made mistakes when we were straight
Now we’re all going under
Oh, oh, so with a sigh we say goodbye

So, what does the song mean?  Interestingly enough, it was the topic of an Ask Katy question in July 2008.  Simon stated, “The truth is that “Dirty GREAT Monster” is about someone close to my extended family, I am really not at liberty to be any more specific than that.”  You can read the full question and answer here.  This leads everyone to assume that Simon is talking about family abuse, specifically, perhaps, sexual abuse of a father to a child with the line about “daddy got the hunger”.

While this domestic abuse, possible sexual abuse, theory is one that is often accepted, I have seen other interpretations.  One theory I saw was that it was about the situation with Andy.  Lines like how there is “no escape” and that you have “hide” and “lie” could imply a lot of situations, including the one with Andy, especially as things were not going well within the inner circle but the band had to publicly say that everything was great.  Thinking about it that way, could the song also be about the music business?  Could Daddy be the business?  Maybe, it is, more specifically, their record label at the time, hungry for the money from record sales.  Everyone sort of ignores the demands and how those demands make artists “lie” and “hide”.  Maybe, they even force bands to work with producers they don’t want to work with and make albums that they aren’t them.     The last verse is particularly interesting in light of this theory.  Could it be the band was outnumbered by the powers that be?  Could those mistakes have been past albums that were made with more independence but didn’t live up to anyone’s standards?  I can’t imagine that life in Duran camp was that great in 2007.  It could have felt like they were “going under”.  Say goodbye could be a reference to Andy.  It could also be about saying goodbye to a major label and those days of commercial success.  It could also be goodbye to artistic integrity.

Yes, this song is one of those songs that seems very obviously about something on the surface but could really be about something else.  What do you think?  Which theory makes the most sense or do you have a different theory?

-A

P.S. Do let me know if you have other songs you want me to look at!

Like butter…I think I’m falling for ya

Yesterday afternoon, as I was sitting on my couch with my family, watching the AMC Breaking Bad marathon, my oldest and I were having a brainstorming session over costuming for the Saturday night banquet during Durandemonium. The dress/costume theme is to wear something that denotes a lyric or song. In true Rhonda-fashion, I’ve waited until the last minute to even start considering options, and I can almost promise it will be a decision that I contemplate up until about midnight the night before I leave. As we continued pondering the possibilities, my daughter mentioned that I could go dressed as a full stick of butter. My thought patterns came to a screeching halt as I wracked my brain to come up with where in the hell the idea of “butter” came from in a Duran Duran song. She laughed, rolled her eyes, and said with all the sarcastic authority that a 16 year old girl thinks she has, “YOU know…’like butter, I think I’m falling for ya’….get it Mom?”  Oh I got it. I nearly fell off the couch in laughter. As I caught my breath and wiped the tears streaming down my face, I said, “Um, I think the line is ‘Nite runner, I think I’m falling for you’….because the song is named Nite Runner!” I could see the gears turning in her head, trying to grasp the obvious secret I’d let her in on, as her eyes widened, seeing her mistake. “Ohhhhh.. So THAT’S what he’s saying!!” Then of course we both laughed. (Although I’m pretty sure I laughed harder…)

It got me thinking about the zillions of other lines of lyric I’ve destroyed on my own over the years, and believe me – there’s been plenty.  I still stumble over what they right lyrics are for a specific line of Red Carpet Massacre, for instance.  “Death squad paparazzi, aaahh” doesn’t roll very easily off the tongue, nor is it heard clearly by my ears when I listen to the CD either. For the longest time I just didn’t even know the words.  Another lyric that I still can’t hear properly is in Beautiful Colours, “…sometimes the beauty of it all seems unbearable til the colours bleed”  I think it’s the word ‘beauty’ that doesn’t quite sound right to me when I hear the song.  Then again, it’s probably just my ears.  I can accept that.

Then there are the lines that I’ve seen others completely destroy…including some sites that pride themselves on having correct lyrics.  One time, I had copied and pasted lyrics to the song Finest Hour. I looked them up on a website and then posted them – assuming (stupid, stupid me) that they were correct. Truth be told, I don’t even remember looking. Well, get this line…”It’s not a dream and you are no prize.”  Uh, no. As most good Duranies knew, the line should read  “It’s not a dream and you are no Christ“.  I didn’t catch it before posting, and so I immediately treated to replies informing me of my egregious, unforgivable error.  That was the last time I posted lyrics without double and triple checking them first.  Live and learn.  I will still occasionally see perfectly good Duranies arguing over the correct lines to Too Bad You’re So Beautiful…apparently the ice queen line is too easily heard as ice cream.  

I must be evolving because at one point, to admit such mistakes would have embarrassed me. Heaven forbid that this Duran fan not know every single lyric as soon as a song is released, right?  Nowadays – I just don’t care what people think.  It’s funny, and no, my hearing is probably not the best these days. Too many evenings spent at rock concerts…imagine that!  So in turn I’m asking you – what lyrics have you come to destroy?  If I think of more that I’ve ruined (and I’m sure there are!), I’ll post ’em!

-R



Kill that light it’s so bright and you’re shining it right in my eyes

I thought it might be fun for me to tackle another one of the lyrics that it was suggested to us to use.  This one grabbed my attention for a few different reasons.  First, it is a lyric that I always took note of.  I’m not sure why.  It has just interested me.  Second, I have felt like I could relate to it.  I can relate to it in a simple, obvious way and then in a much deeper, more personal way.

When I hear that line or even read that line, I have two thoughts that come into mind.  The first one usually makes me laugh as I tend to think about a bad hangover!  Now, I know that I can’t be the only one who is a little less than excited to face bright lights after a long night of celebrating.  Admit it.  Most of you have been there, too, right?  Of course, you have.  😉 This is very Duran Duran, too, isn’t it?  After all, Duran is the “band designed to make you party.”  The second thought reminds me of all of those mornings driving to work.  I leave for work early.  Too early.  Way too early.  I’m not a fan of the morning.  I would be a happier person if I could work at night or, at least, later in the day.  Anyway, I also drive east into the sun for most of the fall and the spring.  Thankfully, the upper Midwest has a lot of winter so the rest of the school year, I drive in the dark.  This sunlight truly is the light shining so bright in my eyes.  Literally.  I tend to look at this line about my attitude in the morning at work as well.  I can be positive to begin with and hate when what should be positive becomes a negative.  The bright light should be good but could be used in such a way to hurt.  Let’s face it.  We all have frustrations at work, at times, just like the light shining in one’s eyes!

Of course, this line could be thought of in a non-literal, more metaphorical sense.  Shining a light on something reminds me about how something can be brought to one’s attention.  If the something being brought to one’s attention is a negative, it can definitely hurt.  I can imagine that this is how Duran probably feels when some aspect of their work is examined, placed under a light, so to speak.  In some cases, of course, this could be fine.  The light could showcase, highlight, spotlight something deemed wonderful.  Yet, what happens when this light shows something less than positive?  What happens when it shows a fault, a problem, a less than perfect example of something?  I can imagine how much that hurts.  After all, anyone creative, anyone willing to share a part of themselves with others runs the risk of exposing oneself to criticism and to rejection.  I know that I feel that every time I post.  What if someone doesn’t like it?  What if someone thinks my writing is terrible?  What if someone disagrees?  What if, what if, what if…The fear of this light can be a killer.  I know that I’m worried about the reaction our book is going to receive.  Obviously, I’m proud of it and I know that Rhonda is proud of it but will it hold up to scrutiny?  That has yet to be seen.  I feel the same way about the convention.  Everything must be done well as I suspect that there will be judgment.  Heck, I’m sure there is a ton of judgment already.  Why did they have it in Chicago?  Why is it in October?  Why is it downtown?  Why does it cost so much money?  (Really, people.  You try putting on an event like this for cheaper!)

This light of examination is often turned on to more than just people’s creative endeavors, isn’t it?  Sometimes, the light shows a behavior.  I think this is pretty tough to take, too.  After all, none of us are perfect and we (meaning all of us–not just Rhonda and myself) certainly aren’t perfect when it comes to our fandom.  I know that I feel like I have grown a lot and changed a lot in terms of how I look at fandom and how I act when it comes to my fandom.  I’m sure that I would approach certain situations very differently now in 2013 than I might have in 2005.  I’m not always proud of my behavior in the past but I like to think that I have learned from it.  Nonetheless, I think the blog posts about fans and fan behaviors have often gotten the most response and the most negative response, at times, simply because people think that we are the light shining on one’s actions, showing something, or some behavior, that hurts to have exposed.  Trust me when I say that none of our blog posts have ever been written to hurt someone.  Never.  We do write blog posts that question people’s assumptions or thought processes, though.  We do question behavior of fans but know this.  We questions fans in a big old general sense, in a collective, in a group.  We aren’t questioning individuals.  We like to have these discussions to grow, to learn.  We obviously hope that you do, too.  Nonetheless, we do recognize that this isn’t always easy or painless just like that light.  It can be way too bright.

-A