The song has the obvious theme of being lost. In the chorus it uses the Prodigal Son story from the New Testement. This story is what the younger son of two takes money from is...
As I walk through the valley
Of the shadow of L.A.
The footsteps that were next to me
Have gone their separate ways

I've seen enough now to know that beautiful things
Don't always stay that way
I've done enough now to know this beautiful place
Isn't everything they say

I heard that evil comes disguised
Like the city of angels
I'm walking towards the light

Baptized in the river
I've seen a vision of my life and I wanna be delivered
In the city was a sinner
I've done a lot of things wrong but I swear I'm a believer

Like the prodigal son, I was out on my own
Now I'm trying to find my way back home
Baptized in the river
I'm delivered, I'm delivered

You're from a small town
You're gonna grow up fast underneath these lights
Down in Hollywood on the boulevard
The dead come back to life

To the praying Mother and the worried Father
Let your children go
If they come back they'll come home stronger
And if they don't you'll know

They say evil that comes disguised
Like the city of angels
I'm walking towards the light

Baptized in the river
I've seen a vision of my life and I wanna be delivered
In the city was a sinner
I've done a lot of things wrong but I swear I'm a believer

Like the prodigal son, I was out on my own
Now I'm trying to find my way back home
Baptized in the river
I'm delivered, I'm delivered

Baptized in the river
(On my own!)
Baptized in the river
(On my own!)
I wanna be delivered

(On my own!)
(On my own!)

Baptized in the river
(On my own!)
I wanna be delivered
Baptized in the river
(On my own!)
I wanna be delivered

Baptized in the river
(On my own!)
I wanna be delivered
I confess I'm a sinner
I've seen a vision of my life
And I wanna be delivered!


Lyrics submitted by poisoned_wound

"The River" as written by Benji Madden Don Gilmore

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd., Universal Music Publishing Group

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The River song meanings
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132 Comments

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  • +3
    General CommentI think prodical is actually 'prodigal' since prodical isn't a word.
    Also, in the second verse with the A7X guy, 'mother' and 'father' should be switched around.
    And I think it may be 405 instead of 45 because I know 405 is a big highway in LA; I'm not sure about that one though.

    But I really like this song; it's quite catchy. The only part I don't really like is that it focuses so much on their faith. This is somewhat new since most of their previous songs, excluding It Wasn't Enough, don't focus this much on their religion.
    oleanderon January 08, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General Commentpersonally im not the biggest GC fan.
    And i dont just love the river because im a huge A7X fan ^_^
    This song is great, and Shadows and Gates do wonders for this song!!
    but claps for GC. Good song (y)
    a7x_mcr24on February 19, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti love this song
    its so different but good at the same time
    i think joels screams abit pathetic though =/
    dark_n_depressedon January 08, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Commentoh wait. i think it's "dead come back to life" not "dead come back tonight". okay. i'll shut up now; i promise. i'm probably not right anyway ^_^
    xLadYofSorrowZxon January 09, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentIn GCTV number 2, they said this song was about redemption and how they found themselves again while making this album. But i think this song is too religious to be about redemption.

    But i get how it does relate to redemption
    l.tsnamion January 15, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti think the song means about someone who has done bad things but that they really are a good person.and all they could really want is to be forgiven.i think its a song of forgiveness.=]
    RomanceGrl802on January 17, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Commenta lot of people i know, when i played it for them, gave gc a lot of crap about this song, saying they were going all "religious on them". okay, America is a free country and you should be able to write about what's close to your heart, whatever that may be. and this song can help a lot of people, whether they're religious or not, because it's not just about faith, it's about realizing when you're in a dark place and having the courage and humility to take yourself out of it, which is a message that can help anyone. the song is really well written and emotional, and i think gc's really brave for releasing it, seeing as religion is such a controversial topic. but seriously, if we can't talk about controversial topics in a rational, respectful manner, what will this world come to?
    freeasabird16on March 12, 2009   Link
  • +1
    Song MeaningI think the meaning of this song is of course being baptized in a river.I think they were tlkin bout how god was mad at him 4 doing a sin but hes tryin 2 tell god 2 give him another chance and forgive him.bcuz in the song he said ″in the city theres a sinner ive done alot of things rong but i swear im a believer″.
    suzuka99on August 18, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentFirst of all, I thought this song is about The Baptism of Jesus Christ but due to the verse "The shadow of L.A. Then, I think it something else.
    Imprezaon January 22, 2017   Link
  • 0
    General CommentCool song.
    Interesting lyrics.
    Love it GeeCee boys from MD.
    Laterrr.=]
    GeeCeeLuver_x3on January 09, 2007   Link

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