"My Life" as written by Marshall B. Iii Mathers, Adam Levine, Larry Darnell Jr. Griffin, Curtis James Jackson and Herbert Louis Rooney....
Got a call from an old friend we'd used to be real close
Said he couldn't go on the American way
Closed the shop, sold the house, bought a ticket to the west coast
Now he gives them a stand-up routine in L.A.

I don't need you to worry for me 'cause I'm alright
I don't want you to tell me it's time to come home
I don't care what you say anymore this is my life
Go ahead with your own life leave me alone

I never said you had to offer me a second chance
I never said I was a victim of circumstance
I still belong
Don't get me wrong
And you can speak your mind
But not on my time

They will tell you you can't sleep alone in a strange place
Then they'll tell you can't sleep with somebody else
Ah but sooner or later you sleep in your own space
Either way it's O.K. you wake up with yourself

I don't need you to worry for me 'cause I'm alright
I don't want you to tell me it's time to come home
I don't care what you say anymore this is my life
Go ahead with your own life leave me alone

I never said you had to offer me a second chance
I never said I was a victim of circumstance
I still belong
Don't get me wrong
And you can speak your mind
But not on my time

I don't care what you say anymore this is my life
Go ahead with your own life leave me alone


Lyrics submitted by kevin

"My Life" as written by Billy Joel

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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My Life song meanings
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  • +2
    General CommentThe guy who moves to Hollywood at the start of the song is Billy Joel, who moved to Hollywood for a couple years, then moved back to New York. During his stay in LA he was a lounge singer/pianist, and this is much of the basis for "Piano Man." Except in this song he's not a lounge singer but a comedian.
    Vozzyon May 06, 2003   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI think it's easy to see that Billy is writing the song about personal freedom - don't let anyone or anything control your life.

    "I don't care what you say anymore, this is my life"

    This is what the song is all about right here. "Don't tell me what to do, I'll do what I want" is basically what he is saying.

    I think that the rebellion could be directed towards many things, such as a boss, wife, family, or even the seemingly inevitable protocol all people follow in their adulthood - routine. I can easily relate to all of these things - after sticking with one thing for so long, it's hard to resist from stopping and doing something else. After all, it's "My Life". Do what makes you happy.
    Marcisbackon December 08, 2008   Link
  • +2
    General CommentOkay, I'm going through something that this song fits perfectly.

    But, i think I'm getting a different feeling from it than the previous posts. It seems almost satirical, in my opinion. "This is my life" is very obviously sayingjust what it says. But the whole idea of not needing anyone but yourself.. We are social creatures by nature, we do need other people, whether we believe it all of the time or not.

    It is a song about a friend, a very good friend. Sometimes, friends know you better than anyone and you don't want to hear what they say when they tell you that youare wrong. I think he's trying to remind us of that. We may not want to hear it, and we may be angry. But we have to get past thinking that or else we'll be singing songs like this for the rest of our lives.
    sirrahsaraon May 17, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Commentbossum buddies
    Rodman1977on March 17, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI believe it's one where you find the meaning hidden in between the lines..it's general but yet personal. It's actually very DEEP on the surface. Ultimately it is about the need for one to find their own way in life, to be strong in holding their own. They may make believe they can do without others and tjeir well intentioned advice, but in the end must realize they need to be mor humble, accept their help and admit they don't know it all. Otherwise they will end up becoming a victim of their own foolish choices and circumstances in life. I think it mostly is to do with a couple or very good friends that were very close and now have been separated and are strangers but call out of the blue after time has passed. The woman has more wisdom than the man and he is too proud to accept her help or that she may see more than he can see. He wants to be a man and is frustrated that he can't seem to find success in the all the ways he's tried. He has made bad decisions and at times she tried to help him see the light. He is trying to established himself as a grown man it's why he is telling her and others to not tell him how to live his life he will find out himself and find his place in this world meaning his "space in life". He is also tired of feeling people think he can't measure up or won't amount to anything.. so he is rebellious and sets out as a proud man. It shouldn't matter how he lives his life to anyone but himself, other shouldn't be judging him. He had a comfortable home and people that loved him but he didn't feel confident in who he was yet and needed to go out and find that person. He didn't like the stable way of life and wanted freedom and adventure. Too many people too close to him that would know what he was doing and he didn't want that. Even after all the decisions he's made and some that really haven't worked out he still doesn't want to admit that some were tight and he should just come back home. In other words he left as a proud man but can he return as a man that's been humbled by life!? They probably do break up or at least go their separate ways because he doesn't like the feeling of being controlled (or constricted to how society views him therefore affecting her opinion of him), but he misunderstands her help as that and so he wants to get away from her (maybe he also didn't like the thoughts that other people had about him as if he wasn't good enough for the girl, he had to be something more.. so he also needed to get away from their disapproval.. because he didn't feel good enough for her as he was and he - believed he needed to be something more first) prove to himself that he doesn't need her. Ultimately he wants his freedom and to explore and cannot believe that she was right about a lot of things. The guy is a very very proud man ... and very confused . She trys To give him advice that he should give some things longer and not make such hasty decisions. So she asks him questions in hopes that he will think for himself. In the end she really isn't telling him what to do in fact, she wants him to be a man and find himself first before he ever be with her. Because she sees he's not confident and the man he is and therefore it will affect the trust in their relationship. He doesn't like being proven wrong and he still is very proud and doesn't want to admit that the woman was right all along. And yet he knows that he was wrong and he doesn't really want to be without her. So the chorus has a lot to do with reverse psychology. It's almost like he's having a conversation in his own mind.. going over the conversation they had and he was too stubborn to take her advice. And there's some frustration if not anger there. "He's angry at himself that's why he saying "I never said you had to give me a second chance and I never said I was a victim of my own circumstances" it the way he does) so for sure disappointment and he has regrets because after it all is said and done (can't change what's already happened) he is realizing he doesn't really want to be alone and doesn't want her to not worry about him. He is in complete denial that's why he tells himself I never said" and tries to tell himself that he's all right without her and he doesn't need her or her help when really he's just lying to himself . He can still hear her voice and realizes that she was right about a lot of things and it drives him mad so he has this conversation in his own mind again and again! Everything has to do with reverse psychology because in the second chorus he's actually saying I really wish you would give me a second chance and I know I'm saying go ahead and leave me alone but he really doesn't want for her to leave him alone, but he's too proud to ask outright and to apologize. And he still doesn't want to admit that he created his circumstances on his own. Hence the reason he says he's not a victim. The trickey line to me is where he says I still belong don't get me wrong. I mean is he saying that he still belongs in The Game of Life so don't dismiss him and he'll pick himself up after having been a victim of his own circumstances..ie FOOLISH Choices?. Or another way I look at that is meaning that he still May belong with (he lost her and now he's trying to make himself believe he still belongs..Like she still holds a place in her heart for him. He is trying to tell himself he's not wrong ..he cam't be wrong ..right * he's questioning himself that he hopes he is right about this that he still does belong with her) her since he is wanting a second chance.. but don't get him wrong he still is his own man. And she isn't right about everything.. because if she was then she would have realized he would want to come back home. Because he knows what he needs to do it's just come back home with his tail wagging behind him, to humble himselg and just admit he was wrong.. . And she can say what she wants to but just don't say it to him in a way that says I told you so. Because he won't hear it in his life.. Ever!.. so she and others can believe what they want about it, but it won't change how he feels about it.
    alicia1148on March 25, 2016   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song is a great one to listen to when you're fired up!
    freddysgirlon May 29, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentGot a call from an old friend
    "We used to be real close
    Said he couldn't go on the American way
    Closed the shop, sold the house
    Bought a ticket to the West Coast
    Now he gives them a stand-up routine in L.A."

    Maybe it's about someone who lost there rural roots and sold there soul to Hollywood.

    I don't need you to worry for me cause I'm alright
    I don't want you to tell me it's time to come home
    I don't care what you say anymore, this is my life
    Go ahead with your own life and leave me alone

    Possibly about how people leave there birthplace and expect there birthplace to follow (ie:old friends)
    JoshFon March 16, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song brings trears to my eyes, everyone should listen to this song jsut to see if it fits there life, some times i just dont like to be bothered, once i say something once dont ask me again, because i never told anyone i need a second chance, and it is true, no matter what sooner or later we will be sleeping in our own place 6 ft under the ground, no body should be able to tell any one when its time to come home. JUST GO ON WITH YOUR OWN LIFE.
    PATIENCEon October 04, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis always reminds me of my parents and my brothers thinking they will have to bail me out if i take a chance and do something i love. I feel it is a song sung to parents about taking a shot, or maybe failing and talking to the told you so's, saying hey, I don't have to give up even if I fail.
    freddysgirlon October 17, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis may sound crazy, but I always thought that the line "now he gives them the stand up routine in LA" may have been a reference to Jerry Seinfeld. In 1978 Jerry Seinfeld was just starting to become a comic and the fact they they both grew up on Long island is interesting. Then in 2000 Jerry bought Billy's house in the Hamptons. Have no hard proof of this, but it is interesting.
    Fein Messon February 03, 2005   Link

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