"Folkin' Around" as written by Brendon Boyd Urie, Spencer James Smith, Jonathan Jacob Walker and George Ryan Ross....
Allow me to exaggerate a memory or two
Where summer's lasted longer than
Well longer than we do
When nothing really mattered
Except for me to be with you
But in time we all forgotten
We all grew

Your melody sounds as sweet
As the first time it was sung
With a little bit more character for show
And by the time your father's heard
Of all the wrong you've done
And I'm putting out the lantern
Find your own way back home

I've forgotten how to sing
Before I sung this song
I'll write it all across this wall
Before my job is done
And I'll even have the courtesy
Of admitting I was wrong
As the final words before I'm dead and gone

You've never been so divine
In accepting your defeat
And I've never been more scared to be alone
If love is not enough to put my enemies to sleep
Then I'm putting out the lantern
Find your own way back home


Lyrics submitted by applehxcsauce, edited by TR_Jessie

"Folkin' Around" as written by George Ross Brendon Urie

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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Folkin' Around song meanings
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  • +2
    General CommentAlright, it's almost unbearable to read some of the comments on this song. As mentioned already in the first few comments, this song is very simple and straightforward. I'll disect most of every line (for what it's worth), despite the fact that there really aren't any deep metaphors or underlying motifs that don't already go without saying. Also, for the record, I'm pretty sure he's talking about some girl.

    "Allow me to exaggerate a memory or two"
    He's exaggerating a memory. Many of us do this when reminiscing.

    "Where summer's lasted longer than
    Longer than we do"
    An exaggeration. He's being dramatic. The summertime is roughly a few months long, and he's saying the summertime lasted long than they did.

    "Where nothing really mattered
    Except for me to be with you"
    As per most relationships (especially at the beginning), his main priority was to be with her.

    "But in time we all forgot
    And we all grew"
    And as per most relationships, that feeling of having 'nothing else matter' eventually dwindles, hence the "forgetment". He and this girl grew past that part, and in some ways, grew up as well.

    "Your melody sounds as sweet
    As the first time it was sung"
    As for this part, he's mentioning how she is still as beautiful (pick an adjective) as the first time they were together.

    "With a little bit more character for show"
    However now, because the two of them aren't together, and because the two of them have matured and moved on, she's now carrying what was left of their relationship. Whenever you split from someone, you always carry those memories with you. The important part in this line is "show", as he's saying how she's adding more character to her personality merely for... show. Perhaps it's not entirely sincere?

    "And by the time your father's heard
    Of all the wrong you've done"
    The girl may have potentially made many bad decisions after they split (my ex-girlfriend resorted to drugs and alcohol to cope with our break-up), and he's saying that her father would be ashamed of all the wrong she's done. By that time...

    "Then I'm putting out the lantern
    Find your own way back home"
    ...he's not playing around anymore. He may have been her light, or at least he believes he was her light that was guiding her, and she's been doing nothing but wrong. He's finally leaving her be, telling her that she has to find her own way- her own path- to get home.

    "If I've forgotten how to sing
    Before I sung this song
    I'll write it all across the wall
    Before my job is done"
    If he loses the motivation that once drove him to care enough to help her, he'll then write down everything that she needs to hear/know, so that even if he stops caring (singing), his original thoughts - ones trying to guide her, help her - still remain.

    "And I'll even have the courtesy
    Of admitting I was wrong
    As the final words before I'm dead and gone"
    To me, this part is admirable. He's admitting that he has made mistakes - that he was wrong - so that this struggle between the two of them isn't as one-sided as it appears. He's made mistakes too. And he's admitting that he's not perfect either. Those are his last words to her before he eventually puts out the lantern and leaves her on her own. Being "dead and gone" means the value, the power of his words, mean nothing to her now (as if he were "dead").

    "You've never been so divine
    In accepting your defeat"
    He could either be mocking her for being so stubborn about her mistakes, or saluting her for being so admitting of her wrongdoings. When analyzing the song, my gut says he's mocking her, but every time I hear the actual music I get the feeling that he's honestly saluting her for accepting her mistakes.

    "And I've never been more scared to be alone"
    He's never been this scared of being alone. She and him were together all the time, but now he's alone on the path without her. Pretty straightforward.

    "If love is not enough to put my enemies to sleep"
    If his love for her is not enough to solve their problems... to fix what's broken...

    "Then I'm putting out the lantern
    Find your own way back home."
    Analysis already mentioned above.



    So it's not a very complicated or deep song. It's about a relationship that fell apart at the seams, and about how he's done with trying to be her guiding light.
    docpookion October 08, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI'm not sure what cards have to do with this song in reply to the above comment...but...

    In an interview Panic did (The Eight Days of Panic) they discuss Folkin Around. It is implied that Brendon wrote this song, and Ryan didn't get it at first (lol!). The first line, "Allow me to exaggerate a memory or two," and even the song title explain that all the other lyrics are cliche and meant to be a bit exaggerated. Brendon goes on to say that the song is "meant to be simple with words that are easily associated, and are very classic and nostalgic words." To me, it's like a little tale you listen to around the campfire about a past love or something, lol. Especially with the country feel. In essence, it's a short sweet song.
    mywordsareweaponson March 19, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Commentthrwmyhrtawy, broaden your horizons, listen to some new music, stop degrading bands that want to grow and change. so you didn't like the song, thats cool, I personally love it, but really don't just come here and trash it because you didn't think it was all that great
    Fennmaconon March 26, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Commentjesus. i'm so sick and tired of hearing about how they've changed.

    they're experimenting.
    Famous xxon March 26, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI love this song coz the tune is really jolly but the words ar a bit sad. Can't explain it really but it's deffo one of my faves on the album.
    Loubee86on April 11, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentTHIS IS TO EVERYONE DISSING THE SONG: This song is brilliant and i hate people who just hate music cuz it sounds "hick". how about looking for a fucking meaning in the song and ignore the fiddle.

    It's about a relationship and how people change and grow apart.

    Good thing there are people like brenden urie to balance out these narrow minded shitheads
    kdbaseyon April 15, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti understand that this isn't exactly a lot of people's cup of tea, but if you really listen they have taken in BIG influences, such as the beatles, you can hear it so much in this cd. They have matured BIG TIME, I guess they're number 1 fans aren't really so. ;)

    anyway, i love this song, and the entire cd, and am no longer embarrassed to listen to them because of the wannabe "scene" crown listening to them!
    kurs10on April 15, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentAlso, I love the folk and bluegrass that was encompasses this song. It's very refreshing.
    docpookion October 08, 2008   Link
  • +1
    Song MeaningI've got an interesting twist on everyone's meanings...

    On the album Pretty. Odd., it seems that Panic! directly addresses their audience a time or two. Many of you have said that this song is about him reminiscing on a past love / relationship -- That he (the narrator) is singing this song to someone, and they have a history together.

    My theory: The song isn't sung for a girl, or a fellow band member. The song is directed at the audience. The listeners.

    I'll break it down:



    "Allow me to exaggerate a memory or two / Where summer's lasted longer than / Longer than we do"

    ---- This line seems very straightforward. He's going to exaggerate past memories, back when summers lasted longer than [the band]. Back when Panic! wasn't too popular, and their hype was gone before the summer.


    "Where nothing really mattered / Except for me to be with you / But in time we all forgot / And we all grew"

    ---- Back then, it wasn't about the fame, or the music. It was about them, playing music their listeners loved. But after a while, the band and the fans grew apart. It was about the money, and the record labels, and the music lost its meaning.


    "Your melody sounds as sweet / As the first time it was sung / With a little bit more character for show"

    ---- Taking the voice of a fan, he's commenting on himself -- On his growth as a singer. His melody is as sweet as it was when the band first formed, but now it's grown more character.


    "And by the time your father's heard / Of all the wrong you've done / Then I'm putting out the lantern / Find your own way back home"
    ---- Keeping the "voice" of a fan: Many of us were told [by our fathers] when we were young the evils of the world -- stealing is bad. Be honest, generous, etc. It's a simple statement. If your father found out that you became greedy, and lost meaning, he'd be upset. If we think of a band as a child, the "father" would be the fans themselves. They raised the band to what it is now. This thought process simplifies the verse: The fans realized the songs lost their meaning, and the band was just in it for the money. They "put out the lantern". This line spun some confusion. I have lived on a large farm before. At night, the house flood lights were turned on (a "lantern"). The lights from the house could be seen from anywhere on the farm, and would be a beacon back to the house. Well if you "put out the lantern" (turn it off), you'd be lost in the dark, and would have to "find your own way back home". The fans turned on the band. They put out the metaphorical lantern, and left the band to find it's own way back to it's "home" -- where it was about the music, and not the money.


    "If I've forgotten how to sing / Before I sung this song / I'll write it all across the wall / Before my job is done"
    ---- Back into the voice of the band: It's [again] fairly straightforward. The band realizes that they've gone awry (they've "forgotten how to sing", until they wrote this song). Now, they'll write it "all across the wall" before the "job is done" -- they're going to spell out their mistakes throughout the album.


    "And I'll even have the courtesy / Of admitting I was wrong / As the final words before I'm dead and gone"
    ---- He's accepted that they lost their way, and wants to shout it to the world before they suffocate under the pressure of pop culture and greed they placed upon themselves.


    "You've never been so divine / In accepting your defeat / And I've never been more scared to be alone"
    ---- Back to the fan's voice: They've accepted their apology, and admit that they've missed the band's original purpose.


    "If love is not enough to put my enemies to sleep / Then I'm putting out the lantern / Find your own way back home"
    ---- Now the band is talking about the album itself (more on this below). If the original fans aren't willing to accept the band's apology, then the band will "put out the lantern" on its 'fans', and let them find their own way back to their "home" -- whether it be Panic!'s old albums, or another typical pop culture band.



    Really, I think of this entire album as an apology. A lot of the haters here have made comments about this being their "worst album yet". Yet the die-hard fans are willing to accept it for what it is, and appreciate the talent in the songs (however different from the norm they are). THAT is the true meaning of this album. I doubt the band planned to make a lot of money with it. Pretty.Odd. was a sort of "filter". The band released a bunch of apologetic, random music -- addressing the audience directly if they cared to listen. When Panic! lost its original meaning, and fell victim to greed, swarms of new 'fans' came for the repetitive beats and upbeat lyrics. But how many actually listened to what the songs were ABOUT? The flamers on this comment board are these 'new fans'. They joined the Panic! hype for the tempo. For the upbeat, fast lyrics. Meanwhile, the original fans (who were with Panic! from the beginning, when they were about the music) were put on Panic!'s back-burner. Panic! ignored their true fans, and essentially released a public apology to them. This new album, clashing, and simplistic to interpret, has a fitting title:

    Pretty. Odd.

    The album IS pretty odd. The genres are eclectic (honestly, who guessed they'd find folk music when browsing the latest Panic! album?! It certainly took me by surprise!). But this song for instance: it's NOTHING like what the 'new fans' joined Panic! to hear. It doesn't have a techno-like tempo. It doesn't have upbeat, fast lyrics. It's homey. It's down-to-earth. This sharp contrast weeds out the 'fans' who were only in it for the pop culture, and only the true fans stick around to pay attention to the lyrics.

    Panic! went off-track and lost their meaning. It was originally about the music. About how the fans felt. About the love, and the relationship between artist and listener. But record deals, Hollywood, and money got in the way. They were blinded by the finer things in life, and realized that contracts don't buy happiness. Music isn't music when it's not recorded from the heart. The band is pleading: They've found the error in their ways, and want to reconnect with their true fans. They want to go back to their old style, before it was about the money, but when it was about the music. Will you accept their apology?
    vexi0non November 05, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentJust what I think, I haven't gone through everyone's comments yet...

    But I think this song is, overall, about a couple, the singer and some girl, who had... *ahem* nightly relations, and her father is not very happy.

    Who's to say whether the two truly love each other or not, but me and my fairytale mind, I like to think they do :)

    "Allow me to exaggerate a memory or two" may be him talking after they are happily married, or somewhere close, and he's recalling the incident, and telling the listener about what happened.

    "Where summers lasted longer than, longer than we do" is just simply, it happened in a summer of their relationship.

    "Where nothing really mattered except for me to be with you. But in time we all forgot, and we all grew" I think is how then, it seemed so impossible for them to be together and be in love, because her father hated him for whatever reason, or just didn't want him to be his daughter's lover. And as they grew up, differences were put aside and her father didn't mind as much.

    "Your melody sounds as sweet as the first time it was sung, with a little bit more character for show" is how perhaps, they had been having their relations a lot, but at first it was just for the sake of doing it, and be "cool kids" or something like that by being able to say they've had it before. But over time it started to become more and more romantic, and less and less because of peer pressure by friends and whatnot.

    "And by the time your father's heard of all the wrong you've done, then I'm putting out the lantern, find your own way back home" is simply, he's going to have to leave her side before morning, and her dad comes to wake her up, because if he's still there, there's gonna be some problems. So he has to leave before her dad comes in the morning, bids her goodnight, turns out whatever lights and gets the heck out of there.

    "If I've forgotten how to sing before I sung this song, I'll write it all across the wall before my job is done. And I'll even have the courtesy of admitting I was wrong, as the final words before I'm dead and gone" perhaps how much he truly does love her, despite what people may think of them having relations at a young age, since he'll go through the trouble of writing all the lyrics for her, if he can't sing them. And maybe he will admit he was wrong about... hrmm... I'm not sure, myself. Perhaps an argument they had, or admitting maybe they were wrong about trying to "fit in" with their friends by doing the deed. And when he says they'll be his final words before he's dead, is simply his saying "before her dad kills me... |:"

    "You've never been so divine in accepting your defeat, and I've never been more scared to be alone" could be when they are together at night, perhaps she was the one who didn't know if it was a good idea for them to be doing what they were doing, but she admitted defeat because she loved him and knew he loved her. And he's never been so scared to be alone, because he loves her... he doesn't want to lose her.

    "If love is not enough to put my enemies to sleep, then I'm putting out the lantern, find your own way back home" is him saying that if their making love won't shut his friends up, and stop them from saying things like "man, you two haven't done it yet? You're lame!" or some teenage boy equivalent of such a statement, then he's just gonna say "screw it" and leave them to be in their lameness.

    At least, that's all of what I see.
    HopetheFangirlon July 11, 2010   Link

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