"Ada" as written by and Matthew D. Berninger Aaron B. Dessner....
Ada, don't talk about reasons
Why you don't want to talk about reasons
Why you don't wanna talk
Now that you got everybody you consider sharp
All alone, all together, all together in the dark

Leave it all up in the air
Leave it all up in the air
Leave it all up in the air

Ada, put the sounds of your house in a song
Try to be speechless for a minute
If you think you're gonna faint, go out in the hallway
Let them all have your neck

Ada, don't stay in the lake too long
It lives alone and it barely knows you
It'll have a nervous breakdown and fall
Into a thousand pieces around you

Stand inside an empty Tuxedo
With grapes in my mouth, waiting for Ada
Ada, hold onto yourself by the sleeves
I think everything counts a little more than we think

Leave it all up in the air
Leave it all up in the air
Leave it all up in the air, yeah

Ada, Ada, Ada
Ada, I can hear the sound of your laugh through the wall

Ada, don't talk about reasons
Why you don't want to talk about reasons
Why you don't wanna talk
Now that you got everybody you consider sharp
All alone, all together, all together in the dark

Leave it all up in the air
Leave it all up in the air
Leave it all up in the air

Ada, Ada, Ada
Ada, I can hear the sound of your laugh through the wall
Ada, Ada, Ada
Ada, I've been hoping you know your way around


Lyrics submitted by lampada

"Ada" as written by Matthew D. Berninger Aaron B. Dessner

Lyrics © BMG Rights Management

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Ada song meanings
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40 Comments

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  • +4
    General CommentBy the way, for those that haven't heard...

    That's Sufjan Stevens on the piano in this song. You can tell. The piano work is superb. I guess they're buddies down in Brooklyn.
    spellcon December 02, 2007   Link
  • +4
    General Commentwhatever it's about it's making me want to cry, hard
    predicateon November 09, 2010   Link
  • +4
    General Commentmatt berninger went to the university of cincinnati, and there is a street within the area of where students live named Ada. Just a thought.
    bearcat42on December 13, 2011   Link
  • +3
    General Commenti thought he was singing "ada i can hear the sound of your life through the wall". one of those moments where you pout and think, "mine was better >:("
    hyphonymon June 07, 2007   Link
  • +3
    General CommentIt seems to me like Ada is either the speaker's good female friend who is getting married, or the speaker's fiancee about to be married to him. Even on the day of their wedding, Ada is having doubts.

    "Ada don't talk about reasons why you don't want to
    Talk about reasons why you don't wanna talk"

    She keeps going round and round the subject and her feelings on marriage. She is unsure if she wants to go through with it.

    "Now that you got everybody you consider sharp
    All alone, all together, all together in the dark
    Leave it all up in the air"

    Everybody who is invited to the wedding reception is dressed formally and seated, waiting for the bride to come in. They are "in the dark", as in they do not know what is happening. "Leave it all up in the air"- Ada is not sure what she wants.

    The speaker is "inside an empty tuxedo" with "grapes in [his] mouth... Waiting for Ada". The speaker is dressed in a tuxedo, indicating he is either a guest at the wedding reception, or possibly the groom. The part about grapes in his mouth may suggest that either he has a sour taste, meaning that he does not feel good about the situation of her marriage, or that he is unable to talk.

    When the speaker says he can "hear the sound of [Ada's] laugh through the wall", I think about him waiting outside her dressing room and hearing her laugh, maybe with her bridesmaids.

    In the end, the speaker hopes that Ada makes the right decision- "Ada I've been hoping you know your way around".
    queenhimion November 27, 2012   Link
  • +2
    My InterpretationI believe that 'Ada' is a character the narrator has lost and really misses. He can't get over her and simply wants to 'protect' her because he's convinced himself that she's vulnerable out in the world alone and without him.

    "Let them all have your neck..."

    "Ada" could be an ex-wife/girlfriend, little sister, or just a lost love that is beyond his control.

    The warnings of "don't stay in the lake too long" and "if you think you're gonna faint go out in the hallway" hint of that Ada may struggle with some kind of mental disorder ("social anxiety" according to the band?) and the narrator feels guilty knowing he's not there to guide her through it. Unfortunately it almost seems like the narrator is not getting through to Ada, or she's not listening and he is only muttering to himself. She leaves his advice "up in the air". He can only watch Ada from a distance and hope she is doing okay and following his advice.

    The line "I can hear the sound of your laugh through the wall.." and lightened climax of the song may possibly hint at the narrator's coming to terms with Ada when he hears her laughing behind closed doors. He realizes that she's doing fine without him. Unfortunetly you have to feel sympathy for the narrator because I believe he had ultimately mistaken his own vulnerability and isolation and associated it with Ada, and really all he only wanted to feel important and significant in Ada's life. A sad story, but you can only hope that both Ada and the narrator find peace on their own.
    Aaron342on July 07, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti love the lines

    "Ada don’t talk about reasons why you don’t want to talk about reasons why you don’t wanna talk"

    and

    "Ada hold onto yourself by the sleeves
    I think everything counts a little more than we think"

    that is all
    MGSRevolveron May 16, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI agree. The line 'I think everything matters a little more than we think' is beautiful. As is 'I could hear your laugh through the wall.
    postenon May 24, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthe name ada is taken from barbara kingsolver's novel: the poisonwood bible. Adah is the name of a physically challenged young girl (twin of another girl in the book, Leah). Physically challenged because half of her brain is not symetrical. Throughout the book she chooses not to speak a word and is in love with the english language's simple pleasures, like palindromes (phrases or words that spell out the same thing forwards and backwards). From this we understand why she calls herself Ada and not Adah.

    "Adah don't talk about reasons why you don't wanna talk about reasons why you don't wanna tlak"

    refers to her refusal to verbally communicate with any of her family members in the novel
    stereogumbyon July 16, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentstereogumby: you'll need more references to sell me on your idea. I'd like to hear.
    mpsalemon July 23, 2007   Link

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