Oh look at how she listens
She says nothing of what she thinks.
She just goes stumbling through her memories
Staring out onto Grey Street.

She thinks, "Hey, how did i come to this?
I dream myself a thousand times around the world,
But i can't get out of this place"

There's an emptiness inside her
And she'd do anything to fill it in.
But all the colors mix together... to grey.
And it breaks her heart.

How she wishes it was different,
She prays to God most every night.
And though she swears He doesn't listen
There's still a hope in her it might
She says, "I pray, but they fall on deaf ears,
Am i supposed to take it on myself?
To get out of this place.

There's a loneliness inside her
And she'd do anything to fill it in.
And though it's red blood bleeding from her now
It feels cold blue ice in her heart.
When all the colors mix together--to grey
And it breaks her heart.

There's a stranger speaks outside her door,
Says take what you can from your dreams.
Make them as real as anything
Oh, It'll take the work out of courage.
But she says, "Please!"
"There's a crazy man that's creeping outside my door."
"I live on the corner of Grey Street"
"And the end of the world."

There's an emptiness inside her,
And she'd do anything to fill it in.
And though it's red blood bleeding from her now
It's more like cold blue ice in her heart.
She feels like kicking out all the windows
And setting fire to this life
She could change everything about her
Using colors bold and bright
But all the colors mix together... to grey
And it breaks her heart
It breaks her heart x2
To grey


Lyrics submitted by shealwayswearsblue, edited by richtestani

Grey Street (Busted Stuff version) song meanings
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53 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentI always looked at it as KungFuChica has --a girl wants to get out of a place/moment/thing, but can't. Probably a mental bar more than anything else. I get that from the "crazy man." He's telling her to follow her dreams and she considers the idea impossible and calls him crazy. An udderly brilliant idea. This is my absolute favorite song, even though I think I like the Lillywhite version better because it seems more extreme.
    thinkitbeiton August 03, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis is the story of my life. The girl in the song is searching for something, she doesn't know what.

    Oh look at how she listens
    she says nothing of what she thinks
    she just goes stumbling through her memories
    staring out onto Grey Street
    she thinks, "Hey, how did i come to this?
    I dream myself a thousand times around the world
    But I can't get out of this place.

    She wants to be somewhere, anywhere, other than Grey Street. She remembers being different, her memories of dreams and hopes. Then the colors began to mix together. To grey. And so she remembers a better time, not saying anything to anybody because every time she does she is shot down. She keeps her feelings inside, and it could be this which hurts her the most.

    there's an emptiness inside her
    and she'd do anything to fill it in
    but all the colors mix together--to grey
    and it breaks her heart

    Shes confused, she tries everything she knows how to do, but everything she tries just falls apart, mixes together, to grey. She doesn't know what to do and she wants desperately to do SOMETHING to make something, anything in her life change, but none of the colors are quite right.

    how she wishes it was different
    she prays to God most every night
    and though she swears it doesn't listen
    there's still a hope in her it might
    she says, "i pray bu they fall on deaf ears,
    am i supposed to take it on myself?
    to get out of this place

    She struggles with her faith, but (perhaps because of the way she was brought up?) she keeps praying to god, every night, hoping that if theres something or someone out there, he/she/it will hear her, and help her. She's too little and too helpless to do anything about her situation, she wants someone bigger to help her.

    There's a stranger speaks outside her door
    Says take what you can from your dreams
    Make them as real as anything
    It would take the work out of courage
    But she says, "Please!
    There's a crazy man that's creeping outside my door
    I live on the corner of Grey street
    And the end of the world"

    When someone DOES come to help her, perhaps a friend who cares for her, an old love, though Dave says "stranger", perhaps it is the god she's been looking for. He tells her that even in her hopeless, empty situation, to never stop dreaming, to believe in hope even if it seems bleak and grey at times. But then she spits it back in his face, thinking he's out to harm her.

    The line:

    There's a crazy man creeping outside my door,
    I live on the corner of Grey Street,
    And the end of the world.

    Is my favorite line in the song, and perhaps the most tragic line in the song as well. There's the answer, right outside her door, and she calls it a crazy man who's out to get her. Who is she talking to when she calls for help from this man? Thats what I always wonder.

    She feels like kicking out all the windows
    And setting fire to this life
    She could change everything about her
    Using colors bold and bright

    Here, he's frustrated with her. Dave's voice just rings out with a desperate, sad, hopeful, angry frustration at this girl who could change her life if she would just LISTEN to what others had to say. But instead she tries to do it herself, find her own way, paint her own picture. Dave's voice, at the peak of hope, sings out beautifully of the "colors bold and bright", but then drops down as he realizes. . .

    But all the colors mix together--to grey
    And it breaks her heart
    It breaks her heart
    To grey

    At the end of the song, there still is no hope, no end of Grey Street in sight. You wonder if there is anything more out there besides Grey Street, because the colors are still mixing together, nothing is going right, her heart keeps breaking and no matter how hard she tries she can't do anything about it. Maybe if she'd just listened to the "crazy man" things would have been different. This is my favorite Dave Matthews song and one of my favorite songs ever, and even though it ends on a somewhat hopeless note, it does wonders for me when I'm depressed. :)
    LullabyBabyon March 10, 2003   Link
  • +1
    General CommentFrom what I understand when I was watching him comment on tv, it is about a woman stuck in depression, and she doesnt understand this depression took over her, and how that if you have ever been truly in a depressed state you would know where grey street is, it was on either vh1 or E entertainment
    wonderousoneon November 30, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI kind of relate this song to my life...

    There's an emptiness inside of her
    and she'd do anything to fill it in
    but all the colors mix together--to grey
    and it breaks her heart

    I see these lines as in she wants to feel love and be loved desperately and she seems to be in the middle... kind of like mixing black and white... and it depresses her in a way
    LinnyLyeon January 02, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General Commentit sounds as if the girl in this song is depressed and is about to commit suicide, very tragic,

    "and though it's red blood bleeding from her now
    it's more like cold blue ice in her heart
    she feels like kicking out all the windows
    and setting fire to this life
    she could change everything about her
    using colors bold and bright
    but all the colors mix together--to grey "

    she has cut herself somehow, and between the twisted emotions of self-defeat, depression, anxiety, etc., the colors of her life, with the help of her spilt blood, has mixed to grey. This is very typical of Dave Matthews, morbid, yet so touching, every can relate to this person at some point in their lives
    jack_sparrowon January 25, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentOnce again DMB amazes me with the vivid descriptions. I think this song is about an emotionally depressed woman. She doesn't talk about how she is feeling. She just thinks about her memories, stuck in a depressing funk. This song IS me on so many levels.

    She has no idea how she came to that point in her life. She thought she'd be in a different place in her life, but she isn't and she wonders how it happened. She can't get out of that place in her mind, that melancholy area where her soul feels drained.

    That empty feeling, that loneliness desperately needs to be filled in. The color reference could be different emotions. As much as she wishes to be happy, her feelings of unhappiness surface.

    She wants things to be different, and she prays for things to change, even though she believes that God isn't listening to her pleas, she still has hope. She wonders if she should bear the brunt of her sorrow and remedy her own pain.

    Though she is a human being with flesh, and vulnerability, her heart has turned cold when everything because dull and bleak.

    The stranger that gives her advice is telling her to believe in herself, and in her dreams for a better life. When she finds that hope, it makes being courageous less difficult. She lives in between total unhappiness and what couldd be construed as suicidal. The end of the world, is great way to describe being on the edge of your sanity. Ready and willing to end it all.

    She wants to break out of her sadness, and throw away her old life full of pain. She could change everything about herself being more vibrant and happy, but in the end she'll still be unhappy, as everything returns to what it once was. It breaks her heart.
    shan4shorton February 16, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI had no idea there was more than one versions of this song. Each seems to tell a slightly different story. I don't know what Dave was thinking when he wrote this version on Busted Stuff, but to me, this version completely and accurately describes what it is like to suffer from depression. Everything becomes hopeless and grey. Even if you believe in God, you can't connect with him. When people try to tell you sensible things, you can't make sense out of it. You feel emotionally cold or numb. And you want so much to break out of it, but you can't help but lock yourself in your house on the corner of Grey Street and The End of the World
    alp85on May 11, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentTo me this song is all about a girl (or Dave himself) suffering from depression and thinking about suicide- and she's had it up to here with everything. She's so deep into it, she's in her own little world, by herself, she's empty and would give anything to feel whole again. She shuts herself off from her friends, family, etc. She's so sick of being on this earth she just wants it to end. Nothing can make her happy anymore because she is so deep into depression. Although she's alive (although there's red blood bleeding inside her, she feels like cold blue ice in her heart.) Meaning, even though she's alive, she feels dead. She prays that someone will help her, prays god will help her-but no one listens. She can't take it all on her own anymore. Maybe if she attempts suicide, maybe someone will realize how much pain and loneliness she is in.
    All the colors (positive things) in the world mix to Gray.
    My favorite line "she feels like kicking out the windows, and setting fire to this life"-she is so mad about feeling this way she wants to kick out all the windows (maybe so she can finally breathe) and setting fire to this life-she hates who she has become and wants to end it and start over. She's done, or wants to be done with life. Although she doesn't necessarily WANT to die, she wants someone to help her be happy.
    This song hit me like a ton of bricks when I first heard it, because I was so where she is in this song. I was done with this life and just wanted it to be over so I could finally breathe and be happy.
    davematthewsloveon August 10, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti think that it is definitely about a depressed woman becasue usually the color grey is used to describe sadness or loneliness
    i think this woman has gotten to a point in her life where she hates the person she has become and wants to change
    "and setting fire to this life
    she could change everything about her
    using colors bold and bright"
    also when i first heard it, i thought maybe she cuts her wrists because of the reference to her bleeding
    deathcab4cootieson May 30, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti like the busted stuff version WAY more than the lillywhite one.
    this song is about a depressed girl who wants to get out of her depression, but doesn't know how. i've been to grey street and at one time this song described my life perfectly
    swim192on March 21, 2008   Link

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