"The Passenger" as written by and Ricky Gardner Iggy Pop....
I am a passenger
And I ride and I ride
I ride through the city's backside
I see the stars come out of the sky
Yeah, they're bright in a hollow sky
You know it looks so good tonight

I am a passenger
I stay under glass
I look through my window so bright
I see the stars come out tonight
I see the bright and hollow sky
Over the city's ripped-back sky
And everything looks good tonight

Singin' la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la, la-la

Get into the car
We'll be the passenger
We'll ride through the city tonight
See the city's ripped backsides
We'll see the bright and hollow sky
We'll see the stars that shine so bright
The sky was made for us tonight

Oh, the passenger
How-how he rides
Oh, the passenger
He rides and he rides
He looks through his window
What does he see?
He sees the silent hollow sky
He see the stars come out tonight
He sees the city's ripped backsides
He sees the winding ocean drive
And everything was made for you and me
All of it was made for you and me
'Cause it just belongs to you and me
So let's take a ride and see what's mine

Singin' la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la, la-la

Oh, the passenger
He rides and he rides
He sees things from under glass
He looks through his window's eye
He sees the things he knows are his
He sees the bright and hollow sky
He sees the city asleep at night
He sees the stars are out tonight
And all of it is yours and mine
And all of it is yours and mine
Oh, let's ride and ride and ride and ride

Singin' la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la, la-la

Singin' la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la, la-la


Lyrics submitted by ApplesInMono

"The Passenger" as written by Ricky Gardiner James Newell Jr. Osterberg

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, BMG RIGHTS MANAGEMENT US, LLC

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The Passenger song meanings
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55 Comments

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  • +3
    General CommentI think the sentiment is very Camus. The whole idea that he sees how wonderful everything is once he relinquished control, became the passenger instead of the driver. Though he has no say in the destination, he is now able to take in all the sights of the world along the way.
    "It doesn't take a degree to serve", that kind of mindset.
    On a side note, the book Time Traveler's Wife mentions this song when the main character is doped out in a car. Neat scene.
    TheRighteouson January 19, 2007   Link
  • +3
    General CommentEver sat in a car with too many drugs in your body.
    All thoughts spin around your head.
    Sometimes seeing elementary things of life.
    a falling star, the hollow look of the night sky.
    Maybe a taxi driving you home after too many drinks at night. Leaning with your head against the window of the car....Imagine! ;-)
    merrybreederon August 29, 2007   Link
  • +3
    General CommentGreat interpretations. I agree with the idea of relinquished control and simply experiencing what is. The passenger is looking out his window passively and the world/life is flying by. All of it belongs to him and he just watches and lets it be.

    In the song everything the subject sees is is beautiful but the song is unnerving. This makes me think that he is startled by it all. The LSD comment works here - its like he is seeing the world for the first time through a new set of eyes (acid) and its kind of freaking him the fuck out. The realization that he owns everything is overwhelming and frightening.

    Bowie's backing vocals are not surprising as he was the producer and this album is considered one of his Berlin-trilogy albums. It was released as an Iggy album, but in reality it was a collaboration w/ Bowie.\

    Anywho. This album is a masterpiece.
    j1eron April 12, 2010   Link
  • +3
    Song MeaningWell, what I have learned about it - it is inspired by some poem by Jim Morrison.
    There is a relation from a concert when he puts a little light for all the people who like to think more about lyrics. Maybe he didn't thought much about it as it occurs that he was really high on drugs when he had written it but it isn't as it was meaningless.

    He said - that it is about being a passenger in life - not really having much influence on it, lack of means, knowledge or whatever, so the only thing what you can do (when you cannot actually steer your life) is to be like passenger who can only watch through the windows, meet everything he experiences etc. So it is as if this song was written for teenagers or people feeling like this - that they don't have much control in their lifes and the only thing they can do is to wait "look through the mirror".

    I think the song is about having fun and seeing wonderful things if we really see that in life you do what you do instead of you wanna do, choose to do, plan to do etc. Noticing beauty of this life, this world..
    wowuon November 09, 2010   Link
  • +3
    General CommentI've always thought this song was about a perspective of seeing life as a dream, and feeling that although it seems we can control our destinies to some extent in the relative world, ultimately whatever ends up happening to us is pretty much totally beyond our control, and this is the experience of the passenger; seeing and feeling and living everything that happens to you very intensely in the present moment, and yet knowing you have absolutely no control over where you're headed but that you're just another rider, a passenger on this incredible, miraculous, cosmic journey.
    MrFantasyon November 25, 2011   Link
  • +1
    General CommentLALA basically mean s3x the 'passenger-i like to ride' is like riding your partner or doing it in the car and they are clearly both caught up in that moment for that night, just the two of them matter, aunion of two people having an amazing moment together and the pleasure kinda transcends them to the heavens. A short definition that is as blunt as it can get.
    alexithymia101on June 25, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI love this song. i just feel like hopping in a car and driving anywhere with the windows down the music loud and just thinking.
    luckycatch08on April 20, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentwasn't punk good back then now you have ur blink 182 who is about lets go skate back then it was about the circle pits and the mosh pits and the blood the screams the alcohol the drugs the true way to rock is the way iggy did. FOUNDER OF PUNK RIGHT HERE IGGY POP!
    oldskoolpunker23on November 18, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentmy friend partly says this is about heroine. what is this about i dont know.
    raindog_mxon February 19, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti end up humming this song to myself whenever im on a train or subway at some horrible hour of the morning and dead tired but enjoying the trip anyway. love it.
    halo26on February 27, 2005   Link

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