"Am I Very Wrong?" as written by Peter Gabriel, Anthony Banks, Anthony Edwin Phillips and Michael Rutherford....
Am I very wrong
To hide behind the glare of an open minded stare
Am I very wrong
To wander in the fear of a never ending lie
Am I very wrong
To try to close my ears to the sound they play so loud
Am I very wrong
The happiness machine is trying hard to sing my song
Today's your birthday friend
Everything all right
Let us our greetings to you send
Happy friend
Everything all right
We hope your life will never end
Am I very wrong
To want to steal a pin then I'll check that I have skin
Am I very wrong
To want to leave my friends and the curse of the happiness machine
Today's your birthday friend
Everything all right
Let us our greetings to you send
Happy friend
Everything all right
We hope your life will never end
We hope your life will never end
They say ...



Lyrics submitted by Demau Senae

"Am I Very Wrong" as written by Anthony Edwin Phillips Anthony Banks

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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Am I Very Wrong? song meanings
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3 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentI think it's about a birthday party whose host is extremely depressed, he's thinking about cutting himself because it all seems stupid and senseless to him - his life is like a neverening horror.
    Tschiggnon March 14, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentKeep in mind, this song is "From Genesis to Revelation" and has nothign to do with a birthday party. The debut Genesis album was a concept album dealing with the accoutn of the Holy Bible. I see "it's your birthday freind" as being the birth of Jesus. Also the first two stanzas of the song mean that, "I", being Jesus, is he wrong for being amongst sinners to minister to them. As far as the other lyrics in the song, Iam sure they have some kind of meaning realating to the ministry of Jesus, but I havn't taken much time to decipher those meanings.
    genfan72on June 12, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentHere is where our adherence to Jonethan King's concept starts to get a little stretched. The character who's birthday it is COULD represent mankind, whose birth has just been chronicled in the last few songs (starting to leave very little room for the rest of the bible) and it COULD be the birth of Jesus, but really it seems to be a little more straight-forward than that.
    Our Protagonist "hides behind the glare of an open-minded stare" and "wanders in the fear of a never ending lie". He tries to close his ears to "the sound they play so loud". The "they" of which he speaks seems to be the friends who sing to him in the chorus. He wants to "steal a pin to check that I have skin" and "leave his friends and the curse of the happiness machine." And of course, he wonders if he is wrong for all of these things.
    This is indicative of a lot of open minded people. The protagonist of the song is questioning whether the happiness of those around him is justified by the events of the world around him which make him feel rather cut off and unreal - thus he wants to prick himself and see if it is not some dream - a lie he wanders in. I believe a group called Gorillaz have a song that is similar - wondering if the endless partying is really all it's cracked up to be or actually indicative of something more sinister.
    Being forced to party or to be happy is just as much of a crime as being forced into sadness or negative situations. This is the brilliant (if somewhat visually silly) point of "The Happiness Patrol" episode of Doctor Who.
    Our Protagonist's friends though, are NOT open minded, and thus do not see outside of the illusion of happiness they are perpetuating, and hope that our Protagonist lives on forever inside this lie. Thus the idea of this never ending happiness without a moment of reflection or regret sends him into wailings of woe at the end "they say never eeeeeend! never end, never end, never end," etc
    The idea of the Happiness Machine may come from something called exactly that in Ray Bradbury's book entitled "Dandelion Wine", which certainly would have been around having been published 10 years or so before this song was produced. In it, an inventor tries to make a Happiness Machine. In doing so, he ignores the little things that already make his life happy. When people try the machine, they discover a great sadness, for the machine makes one realize all the things they never knew they wanted, and that one cannot stay in that state forever, because of the everday things in life that have to get done. Eventually, the inventor realizes that it is these everyday little things that are the real Happiness Machine.
    Madpropheton November 14, 2008   Link

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