In a 2007 interview with XFM, frontman Dave Grohl stopped short of explaining the meaning behind "The Pretender", but alluded its roots go to current political unrest. Grohl noted,...
Keep you in the dark
You know they all pretend
Keep you in the dark
And so it all began

Send in your skeletons
Sing as their bones go marching in, again
The need you buried deep
The secrets that you keep are ever ready
Are you ready?
I'm finished making sense
Done pleading ignorance
That whole defense

Spinning infinity, boy
The wheel is spinning me
It's never-ending, never-ending
Same old story

What if I say I'm not like the others?
What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
You're the pretender
What if I say I will never surrender?
What if I say I'm not like the others?
What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
You're the pretender
What if I say that I'll never surrender?

In time our soul untold
I'm just another soul for sale, oh well
The page is out of print
We are not permanent
We're temporary, temporary
Same old story

What if I say I'm not like the others?
What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
You're the pretender
What if I say that I'll never surrender?
What if I say I'm not like the others?
What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
You're the pretender
What if I say that I'll never surrender?

I'm the voice inside your head
You refuse to hear
I'm the face that you have to face
Mirrored in your stare
I'm what's left, I'm what's right
I'm the enemy
I'm the hand that will take you down
Bring you to your knees

So who are you?
Yeah, who are you?
Yeah, who are you?
Yeah, who are you?

Keep you in the dark
You know they all pretend

What if I say I'm not like the others?
What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
You're the pretender
What if I say I will never surrender?
What if I say I'm not like the others?
What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
You're the pretender
What if I say that I'll never surrender?

What if I say I'm not like the others?
(Keep you in the dark)
What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
(You know they all pretend)
You're the pretender
(Who dares)
What if I say I will never surrender?

What if I say I'm not like the others?
(Keep you in the dark)
What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
(You know they all pretend)
You're the pretender
(Who dares)
What if I say I will never surrender?

So who are you?
Yeah, who are you?
Yeah, who are you?


Lyrics submitted by intothegrinder2, edited by kobe107, SomebodyElse01

"The Pretender" as written by David Eric Grohl Christopher A. Shiflett

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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The Pretender song meanings
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  • +7
    General CommentWell, I hate politics.. so even if many people interpret is as something political.. EK! Haha, I find a meaning that is.. I'm horrible with words.. it's like someone challenges who he is, and he is standing his ground and saying he will never give in and surrender (to whatever you can relate to). I think one of the things he refuses is to be like everyone else in the typical 'guy' way. He's telling a girl, no matter how much she might put a stamp on his head that he's just like everyone else, he says he doesn't care what she thinks. Who is she to say who he is? He believes he can give more than that. I like to think of it without the relationhip ties, though. As in, someone is challenging you for who you are and what you stand for and you get up off the ground, state your purpose and hold your own. As in, someone is finally questioning you and you have enough sense of self and security to stand up and prove yourself.
    Beautiful. And MOVING.
    stephanierush07on August 25, 2007   Link
  • +6
    General CommentIncubus_Man23: I just want to let you know that I think "tohup" was right in what he said this song is about.

    In short, it is about letting those supporters of the Bilderberg Agenda - human population reduction by at least 80% and the implanting of digital chips in people - know that They Will Fail, and that we - many, many people; and more and more as more people learn about them - will just chose a different way of life, one not decided on by us (people) following (believing and obeying) your (the talking points and policy suggestions of those people in Bilderberg) agenda as presented to us by your deception.

    I would like to add a personal note: A lot of people have been noticing the barcode like squares made of black and white ink which can be scanned by cellphones. I think this is part of this agenda of getting people used to a track-and-trace society. Just remember we have free will, and if we act on this we will be fine.

    To those who attend the Bilderberg Group and to the those on the steering committee of Bilderberg and to those who agree with Bilderberg's vision for the human community, I say: "Your the pretender. What if I say I will never surrender?" Meaning: Your the ones deceiving others about trying to steal peoples wealth and about the history of all the cruel activities that you are responsible for, and I, and may others, aren't believing your lies (your pretending facade) anyone. We've woken-up, and were staying awake.

    P.S. Clinton, Obama, Hillary, Bill Gates, Sorros, Rothschilds, the Queen of England, the Queen of the Netherlands, David Rockefeller, Henry Kissinger, and many other influential people attend the Bilderberg Group.
    Daniel Estulin wrote a good book on the subject.

    In short: the Bilderberg Group was a secret meeting of globally influential people who used to deny they exist but now it has become obvious they do, so it can no longer be considered a secret, and they try and steer world events. If you think "they control the world" or that "they don't exist" or that "they don't have any influence in human affairs" or that "they are annunaki aliens" your an idiot. There past existence is part of human history and their current existence is part of current-events fact, so research it, think for yourself, form your own thoughts (first start thinking), and just do your part in reality - not childish make believe. Your a human being, for gods sake! Your life has VALUE! Ending one a personal note: I will never surrender. So will you? Music inspires us to do greatness, and this song further inspires me to keep spreading the word and further informing myself and others about Bilderberg and their agenda and of our individual potential - which is limitless.

    tarpley.net
    theinternationalforecaster.com
    earthpulse.com
    infowars.com
    YouTube: The Alex Jones Channel
    Books: By Webster G. Tarpley: George Bush, the unauthorized biography; Surviving the Cataclysm; Against Oligarchy.
    By Nick Begich: Angels Don't Play This HARRP
    By L. Fletcher Prouty: The Secret Team
    By Daniel Estulin: The True Story of the Bilderberg Group
    and for you "religious christians" that can't stop talking about how much you have "accepted Jesus Christ into your
    heart" and can't stop implying your sooo much better then everyone else for doing this, because now you are
    "born-again" and are "saved", and how everyone else "needs to do the same in order to be saved." etc. here is a
    book for you: the title is BeHold A Pale Horse, and its author is William Cooper.
    Movies: YouTube: Endgame: blueprint for global enslavement
    The Obama Deception
    Interview with Aaron Russo
    Facts/ things to research that will wake you up:
    MIAC Report
    NDAA (National Defense Authorization Act)
    Eustace Mullins: his Books "the curse of Cain" ; "the world order"; and "secrets of the federal reserve" (G. Edward Griffen and bob chapman covered this stuff after Eustace did.)

    AccountKiller sss121111on December 11, 2011   Link
  • +4
    General CommentGreat. Nay, it's *fucking* great. Excuse my French, but it was needed to emphasise just how incredible this song is.

    I think... could be way off, but I think maybe he's in love with a girl, and he's telling he's the one for her, even though she keeps going for other guys.

    Or that all these other guys say they're in love with her, but they're not. When he says it - he's not pretending. And he's not giving up. Good man!
    strider3005on August 13, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI love this song! I love the energy of the vocals. I love the cello as well. The video reminds me of the counter terrorists from Counter Strike.hehe. I can play the song a little bit on the guitar, I'm so proud of myself ;) Definetly one of the most underated bands in the world. Aza aza fighting!!
    LightofAuguston July 28, 2010   Link
  • +2
    My InterpretationI just think it's about trying to get close to someone who never reveals their true self. Some people keep conversations superficial. They never let you get too close. They're not real. Simple as that.
    amcsorleyon May 31, 2011   Link
  • +2
    General CommentKeep you in the dark
    you know they all pretend
    Keep you in the dark
    and so it all began

    --> This is about an unsuspecting guy getting caught in the middle of some sordid relationship from a dark, and manipulative woman. The innocent guy is about to get a dark adventure they could never anticipate.



    Send in your skeletons
    Sing as their bones come marching in
    Again
    They need you buried deep
    The secrets that you keep are ever ready
    Are you ready?

    ---> The manipulative person now sends in her skeletons, or her tricks, in an attempt to mesmerize the guy. As the woman spins her web of lies and deceit, the guy is now entangled in this web and keeps her secrets in an attempt to win her.



    I'm finished making sense
    Done pleading ignorance
    That whole defense
    Spinning infinity, boy
    The wheel is spinning me
    It's never ending,
    Never ending
    Same old story

    ---> At some point the innocent guy realizes what he has been entangled in and is now ready to end the "relationship" with the manipulator (Pretender).



    What if I say I'm not like the others?
    What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
    You're the Pretender
    What if I say I will never surrender?
    What if I say I'm not like the others?
    What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
    You're the Pretender
    What if I say I will never surrender?

    ---> This is the realization for the guy that he will not be one of her many minions who blindly continue to follow in her web of lies and deceit. This is the battle cry for the guys liberation from the sordid affair he was engaged in.


    In time or so I'm told
    I'm just another soul for sale
    Oh, well
    The page is out of print
    We are not permanent
    They're temporary
    Temporary
    Same old story

    ---> The guy realizes that he is just one of many guys that desperately seek someone to love him. He is willing to give his soul to someone for a brief encounter for happiness. He knows his time here (on Earth) is temporary and that his quest for happiness is also temporary.


    What if I say I'm not like the others?
    What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
    You're the Pretender
    What if I say I will never surrender?
    What if I say I'm not like the others?
    What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
    You're the Pretender
    What if I say I will never surrender?
    I'm the voice inside your head
    That you refuse to hear
    I'm the face that you have to face
    Mirroring your stare
    I'm what's left, I'm what's right
    I'm the enemy
    I'm the hand that'll take you down
    Bring you to your knees.
    So who are you?
    Yeah, who are you?
    Yeah, who are you?
    Yeah, who are you?

    ---> The guy has engaged in a final conversation with the woman. He is calling her out of the actions she has engaged in. Possibly demanding who the Hell is she for doing this to him, to all the others.


    Keep you in the dark
    you know they all pretend

    ---> Her response is that she will continue to spin a web of lies and deceit to snare unsuspecting men for her gain.



    What if I say I'm not like the others?
    What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
    You're the Pretender
    What if I say I will never surrender?
    What if I say I'm not like the others?
    What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
    You're the Pretender
    What if I say I will never surrender?
    What if I say I'm not like the others?
    (keep you in the dark)
    What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
    (You know that they all pretend)
    You're the Pretender
    What if I say I will never surrender?
    What if I say I'm not like the others?
    (keep you in the dark)
    What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
    (You know that they all pretend)
    You're the Pretender
    What if I say I will never surrender?
    So who are you?
    Yeah, who are you?
    Yeah, who are you?

    ---> The guys final response that he is done with her. He is walking away and will not look back. His parting shot is asking her who does she think she is for continuing to do what she is doing? Maybe asking if she has no soul of her own and preys on the souls of others. With that, he is done with her.
    RDron December 11, 2011   Link
  • +2
    Song MeaningIn a 2007 interview with XFM, frontman Dave Grohl stopped short of explaining the meaning behind "The Pretender", but alluded its roots go to current political unrest. Grohl noted,
    "That's the thing with lyrics, you never want to give away specifics, because it's nice for people to have their own idea or interpretation of the song. But, you know, everyone's been fucked over before and I think a lot of people feel fucked over right now and they're not getting what they were promised, and so something to do with that."
    Grohl also told XFM "The Pretender" was not initially planned for the album and happened really quickly.
    "That song didn't happen until later on in the session. We didn't go into making the record with that song and it happened after we recorded a lot of stuff. Up until that point, I didn't know if we had a good opening song or not. So after we recorded it, I thought, 'oh this is perfect, we have the song to open the record,' and it just became everybody's favorite song. ... It's the type of song that I look forward to opening shows with and it came together really easily. We put that song together in, I don't know, a day, whereas a lot of the other songs we worked on for weeks."
    lolguy23on May 13, 2012   Link
  • +2
    Song MeaningIt's a protest against the police state and the elite political class and government employee overclass. the emperor has no clothes. he's the pretender.
    kanzeion May 04, 2013   Link
  • +2
    Song MeaningSadly nobody knows the true meaning of this song. If you see what this truly means then you will find out more about why they haven't been heard from for a long time.
    This song refers to the New World Government. The pretender= The Anti Christ. And all those soldiers trying to stop them is the New World Government trying to stop them from telling others. I will show you the lyrics from here in and give you the meanings.

    Keep you in the dark
    You know they all pretend
    Keep you in the dark
    And so it all began
    = This part of the song refers to the anti-Christ keeping everybody in the dark, he is pretending to be our ally but is making sure we don't know the truth, and from there it begins to unravel before our very eyes.


    Send in your skeletons
    Sing as their bones go marching in... again
    The need you buried deep
    The secrets that you keep are ever ready
    Are you ready?
    I'm finished making sense
    Done pleading ignorance
    That whole defense
    = The people that will stand against the anti-Christ, the bones that go marching in is the resistance, the need to worship the true Christ has been buried deep, the secrets that the anti-Christ will keep from the people stand ready to be unleashed. Its time to stand ready and stop talking about it, its time to worship god.

    Spinning infinity, boy
    The wheel is spinning me
    It's never-ending, never-ending
    Same old story
    = You will either spend infinity in hell, or infinity in heaven, the wheel will continue spinning of lies and hate and deceit, it will never end and the anti-Christ will continue feeding you the lies the same old story.

    What if I say I'm not like the others?
    What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
    You're the pretender
    What if I say I will never surrender?
    = To challenge the anti-Christ. Say you will stand and not accept him and accept god as your true savior, the anti-Christ pretends to be our savior and wants us all to surrender to him, its our job to NOT surrender to the anti-Christ.

    In time or so I'm told
    I'm just another soul for sale... oh, well
    The page is out of print
    We are not permanent
    We're temporary, temporary
    Same old story
    = The devil see's you as a soul for sale, it is your job not to fall into his web of lies and its your job not to sell your sole to him. The very page that your life story is writtin on the devil is trying to twist it. We are not permanent for this world we will all die one day and its upto us to choose between god, or satan. The story will never change we must choose between one or the other.

    I'm the voice inside your head
    You refuse to hear
    I'm the face that you have to face
    Mirrored in your stare
    I'm what's left, I'm what's right
    I'm the enemy
    I'm the hand that will take you down
    Bring you to your knees
    = The voice in your head that you refuse to hear, the face that you have to face, mirrored in your stare, im whats left and whats right, im the enemy of the anti-Christ, im the hand that will take you down or take you to heaven, bring you to your knees before god. This is Jesus, he will come down and deem those worthy to heaven and send the others to hell for not accepting him as Lord and Savior and accepting the Anti-Christ (satan).

    So who are you?
    Yeah, who are you?
    Yeah, who are you?
    Yeah, who are you?
    = Who are you truly? Are you a follower of god or satan? Are you worthy of heaven, do you follow Christ and his teachings or will you be tricked by satan?

    Keep you in the dark
    You know they all pretend
    = Satan will keep you in the dark, they will pretend to be your ally and pretend to give you everything you could possibly want.

    What if I say I'm not like the others?
    (Keep you in the dark)
    What if I say I'm not just another one of your plays?
    (You know they all... pretend)
    You're the pretender
    What if I say I will never surrender?
    = Stray from satans lies, he will keep you in the dark. He will play you its your job to not fall into his game. Satan pretends to be your friend. The pretended is satan the anti-Christ. Never surrender to satan or the anti-Christ stay true to Jesus our savior.


    So who are you?
    Yeah, who are you?
    Yeah, who are you?
    = Who are you truly? Will you follow Jesus after hearing of what the Anti-Christ will do to you. Or will you follow god and have a place in heaven.

    Judgement day is coming fast friends, its our job now to figure out the lies and the deceit. Remember to follow Jesus our savior. Do not be tricked by false prophets, do not be fooled by the Anti-Christs lies, for the Anti-Christ is among us. This song is showing you that there is a rebellion coming and its our job to make sure that Satan does not win this battle. Allow Jesus to guide you, allow him to fill you with the Holy Spirit. Pray to him and you will know the lies from the truth.

    Stay safe friends, for we are all to face tests that we have never faced before in the following months. Judgement day is upon us.




    I'm the voice inside your head
    You refuse to hear
    I'm the face that you have to face
    Mirrored in your stare
    I'm what's left, I'm what's right
    I'm the enemy
    I'm the hand that will take you down
    Bring you to your knees

    I must admit this lyric here can go in two ways, but my thoughts on this is that the voice in your head is God trying to lead you away from the Anti-Christ. That we refuse to hear that voice and continue being led by a false prophet. The face that you have to face would of course be God because he will deem whomever worthy to enter heaven, his followers, the true followers of god. Mirrored in your stare it is said in the bible that man is created in gods image so more than likely we will be seeing god in our image. Whats left and whats right, God will be what is left and he is the right one to follow as he is our true lord and savior. Im the enemy, god will have many enemies against him including the Anti-Christ who will try to keep God hidden from us as we have seen so far, Christianity is now becoming illegal everywhere so the Anti-Christ is trying to hide god from us. Im the hand that will take you down, God will choose who is worthy to go to heaven and he will send those to hell that do not truly follow him. Bring you to your knees, God will bring people to their knees before him at his presence and beauty and grace, he is our true lord and savior and we will bow before him when he comes.

    Now there is the second meaning of this which I don't think would be correct but to everybody their own.
    The voice inside your head= Satan trying to speak to you to do wrong
    You refuse to hear= You refuse to hear Satan and fight against him
    Im the Face you have to Face= When you go to hell you will face Satan and his punishments
    Mirrored in your stare= Satan may indeed try to put illusions into your head and make himself look exactly like you
    Im whats left, Im whats Right= Satan will fool you and tell you he is the only way, he will tell you that he is the only one that is Right.
    Im the Enemy= Satan is Gods Enemy, he is our enemy that we should fight against.
    Im the Hand to take you Down= Satan will bring you to hell with him if he can, don't fall for his tricks
    Bring you to your knees= Satan will try to bring you to your knees and make you kneel before him, do not do it

    In the Video:
    Now I have one more comment to make here. The red in the wall, the water, or what I would see as Blood. The blood of Jesus to wipe away our sins and to keep Satan out of us. Jesus gave his blood and his very life so we may all be forgiven for our sins.
    scotsman26on August 01, 2014   Link
  • +1
    General Commenthmm i never rly thought of it directed by government but after reading foo fighters comment id have to agree with him..
    seems as though hes trying to express that the president doesnt care about the individuals (calling them "skeletons")
    andydrummer2004on August 15, 2007   Link

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