"American Life" as written by and Mirwais Ahmadzai....
Do I have to change my name
Will it get me far
Should I lose some weight
Am I gonna be a star

I tried to be a boy
I tried to be a girl
I tried to be a mess
I tried to be the best
I guess I did it wrong
That's why I wrote this song
This type of modern life
Is it for me
This type of modern life
Is it for free

So I went into a bar
Looking for sympathy
A little company
I tried to find a friend
It's more easily said
It's always been the same
This type of modern life
Is not for me
This type of modern life
Is not for free

American life [American life]
I live the American dream [American dream]
You are the best thing I've seen
You are not just a dream [American life]

I tried to stay ahead
I tried to stay on top
I tried to play the part
But somehow I forgot
Just what I did it for
And why I wanted more
This type of modern life
Is it for me
This type of modern life
Is it for free

Do I have to change my name
Will it get me far
Should I lose some weight
Am I gonna be a star

American life [American life]
I live the American dream [American dream]
You are the best thing I've seen
You are not just a dream [American life]

American life

I tried to be a boy
Tried to be a girl
Tried to be a mess
Tried to be the best
Tried to find a friend
Tried to stay ahead
I tried to stay on top

Do I have to change my name
Will it get me far
Should I lose some weight
Am I gonna be a star

Uh, uh, uh, uh

I'm drinkin' a soy latte
I get a double shotie
It goes right through my body
And you know I'm satisfied
I drive my mini cooper
And I'm feeling super-duper
Yo they tell me I'm a trooper
And you know I'm satisfied
I do yoga and pilates
And the room is full of hotties
So I'm checking out their bodies
And you know I'm satisfied
I'm diggin' on the isotopes
This metaphysics shit is dope
And if all this can give me hope
You know I'm satisfied
I got a lawyer and a manager
An agent and a chef
Three nannies, an assistant
And a driver and a jet
A trainer and a butler
And a bodyguard or five
A gardener and a stylist
Do you think I'm satisfied

I'd like to express my extreme point-of-view
I'm not a Christian and I'm not a Jew
I'm just living out the American dream
And I just realized that nothing is what it seems

Do I have to change my name
Am I gonna be a star
Do I have to change my name
Am I gonna be a star
Do I have to change my name


Lyrics submitted by ruben

"American Life" as written by Mirwais Ahmadzai

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

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American Life song meanings
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22 Comments

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  • +2
    General CommentI think most of you have the song meaning a little twisted.

    She's saying, "Look at this lifestyle: it's materialistic, it spreads ignorance and it's selfish. Why did I get caught up in that? I'm glad I'm over it now. Since I've been released from the bonds that have once oppressed me, here's a song about my struggle and why you shouldn't make the same mistakes."

    At least that's how I see it.
    DeeperThanYouThinkon September 09, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Commentthis song is about how she tried to be something that she's not. then, she realized that what she was trying to be isn't all that great anyway. oh, and non-Madonna fans need to quit commenting on her pages, because you will never covert Madonna fans over to your evil ways.
    alex_0203on December 23, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentAmerican Life is the reaction to everything she saw after 911, even though she was in England all of the recording of American Life. She had to re-think to herself whether everything she had done was worth it and wonder if she can go on.
    zeplinsong89on February 12, 2006   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationI heard this song on the radio again today. As I see it, Madonna is telling us that she has all these wonderful things and yet she's not satisfied. "And you know I'm satisfied" basically means that the narrator believes that we as listeners share a materialistic view of the world, and the repetition of the phrase in the rap tries to trick us into believing the hype.

    Finally, she tells us to stop and think whether the high life is so wonderful after all - "Do you think I'm satisfied?". She goes on to say that the "modern" American dream is not as wonderful as the media makes it out to be.
    chrwlon May 19, 2012   Link
  • +1
    MemoryEven today, American Life is the only song by Madonna I have mixed feelings about. Where was she getting at during her Second Freakout? It clearly painted Madonna in a corner/compromising position. Casting Madge as the Female Eminem simply didn't work. Clearly she was angry and sad that she recorded a song rightly disowned by her audience and it cast a shadow over everything. American Life is a misstep and a failure in her oevure. Clearly the Lady of Manor and the acoustic direction didn't help her cause any. Yet as she cries the hook, she still loves America. So let's give Madonna the benefit of the doubt. This song sounded a lot better and louder during the Reinvention Tour and Maddy Rocked It. Clearly, Madonna has good and honest intentions and she will always do her best to make things better in our screwed-up World System. Madonna knows how to let the cry out and I Admire Her for That Quality in Her Sad Voice. After all, she has made her American Dream mean a lot to fans and critics alike. Her audience is her compass. Happy Fourth! Madonna Cries in Her American Life Because Her Love, Life and Sadness Are all too true and real! She's a brilliant American, that Madge!
    rabbitbunnyon July 03, 2013   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAh, Madonna. I love her outlook on everything.
    clarissaon May 21, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentNot too many American Life songs here...I think it is her most personal album yet!
    mmbson February 21, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAmerican Life. Basically its her view on what the U.S has become, the way of life, expectations, etc.
    KillMeFasteron December 10, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI'm drinkin' a soy latte
    I get a double shotie
    It goes right through my body
    And you know I'm satisfied
    I drive my mini cooper
    And I'm feeling super-duper
    Yo they tell me I'm a trooper
    And you know I'm satisfied
    I do yoga and pilates
    And the room is full of hotties
    So I'm checking out their bodies
    And you know I'm satisfied
    I'm diggin' on the isotopes
    This metaphysics shit is dope
    And if all this can give me hope
    You know I'm satisfied
    I got a lawyer and a manager
    An agent and a chef
    Three nannies, an assistant
    And a driver and a jet
    A trainer and a butler
    And a bodyguard or five
    A gardener and a stylist
    Do you think I'm satisfied


    This Shit Is For Reels Music?
    D4MVPon February 13, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthanks for postin that, and after reading it, i think i'll go take a listen!
    alex_0203on February 23, 2006   Link

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