"Arlandria" as written by David Eric Grohl, Taylor Hawkins, Christopher A. Shiflett, Nate Mendel and Pat Smear....
Ain't that the way it always starts
A simple round of conversation
Became a shameful equation
I flipped you station to station

Hey, don't go and turn the other way
Don't say there's nothing more to say
Come on, hear me out, hush, hush, settle down
Button up don't make a sound

Shame, shame, go away
Come again some other day
You used to say I couldn't save you enough
So I've been savin' it up, I started savin' it up

And when you said I couldn't give you enough,
I started givin' you up, I started givin' you up
You are not me, Arlandria, Arlandria,
You and what army, Arlandria, Arlandria
Oh God you gotta make it stop

Chase all of those memories away
Save them all for another day
Don't you remember it was rain that drowned you

Wait, I wanna see if you can change
I wanna keep all I can take
I feel much better now
Use me up, spit me out, let me be your hand-me-down
Fame, fame, go away, come again some other day

You used to say I couldn't save you enough
So I've been savin' it up, I started savin' it up
And when you said I couldn't give you enough
I started givin' you up, I started givin' you up
You are not me, Arlandria, Arlandria
You and what army, Arlandria, Arlandria
Oh God you gotta make it stop

My sweet Virginia
I'm the same as I was in your arm
My sweet Virginia
I'm the same as I was in your arm

Shame, shame go away, come again some other day
Memories keep haunting me, help me chase them all away
Hush, now, settle down, button up, don't make a sound
Close your eyes, turn around, help me burn this to the ground
Come now, take the blame, that's OK I'll play the game
I don't care it's all the same, watch it all go up in flames
Use me up, spit me out, let me be your hand-me-down
Fame, fame, go away, come again some other day

You used to say I couldn't save you enough
So I've been savin' it up, I started savin' it up
And when you said I couldn't give you enough
I started givin' you up, I started givin' you up
You are not me, Arlandria, Arlandria
You and what army, Arlandria, Arlandria
Oh God you gotta make it stop

My sweet Virginia
Oh God you gotta make it stop
My sweet Virginia
Oh God you gotta make it stop


Lyrics submitted by tdh1121

"Arlandria" as written by David Eric Grohl, Taylor Hawkins, Christopher A. Shiflett, Nate Mendel, Pat Smear

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group, BMG RIGHTS MANAGEMENT US, LLC

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Arlandria song meanings
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9 Comments

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  • +3
    General Commentthis is an awesome song, the whole wasting light album is amazing
    flatpeakrockstaron April 10, 2011   Link
  • +2
    General CommentSeems pretty clear to me that this song is about trying to free yourself from the expectations of the world around you. Virginia is a reference to both his mother and the state. I think this song was written about a time in his life where he was making his own choices about what to do with his life, and it wasn't necessarily approved of by those important to him. And it's probably a shout out to all his fans that may be experiencing the same thing.

    "Ain't that the way it always starts
    A simple round of conversation
    Became a shameful equation"

    About a conflict of ideas. Someone doesn't like what he has chosen to do with his life, and just simple conversation brings up tension and disapproval.

    "Don't say there's nothing more to say
    Come on, hear me out, hush, hush, settle down
    Button up don't make a sound
    Shame, shame, go away
    Come again some other day"

    Basically saying please just let me explain that I want to go on my own path. All he wants is to stop being looked at as shameful for his choices.

    "You used to say I couldn't save you enough
    So I've been savin' it up, I started savin' it up
    And when you said I couldn't give you enough,
    I started givin' you up, I started givin' you up"

    He may have been finding the normal route of life wasn't working for him. And no matter how much of himself he put into doing what he was told was the right thing to do, someone still thought he should be able to do more. He's realizing that he has to worry about himself, not what everyone expects from him.

    "You are not me, Arlandria, Arlandria,
    You and what army, Arlandria, Arlandria,"

    Some people find happiness and comfort just doing whats always been done and staying true to their roots. But some people are not. They are individualists, and they need to carve out their own life, and that's what this means, he is wanting to not be defined by where he came from, and he knows that no one can stop him once he choses to go his own way.

    I'm not going through the whole song because there are a LOT of lyrics, but you can see the general pattern I'm illustrating here.
    DelawareSlideon May 20, 2011   Link
  • 0
    My Interpretationarlandria is a town in virginia where dave said he lived when he moved back there, he also said virginia is his mom's name so i think the "my sweet virginia, i'm the same as i was in your arms" might be a double meaning. overall i think it's him kind of saying, i'm gonna be myself, if im not who you want me to be then back off
    tdh1121on March 31, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOne of my favorite songs from this Wasting Light album!
    I agree with tdh1121, its probably a double meaning when he says Sweet Virginia.
    Dave explained in an interview, what this Arlandria town is all about. Every time he gets involved on too many things and feels kinda lost, he moves back to Arlandria and "starts all over again".
    Thats why, in the end of the song he goes like: Oh God, you gotta make it stop!

    Im with you Dave! Dont go back to Arlandria, keep on your awesome rock tour and i hope you come to Brazil!
    See you here, for sure!
    clarkfrankon April 11, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMaybe the song is about the stress situation, wich comes with the touring life of a band. After being a long time togehter, they maybe started to argue a little bit more ("shameful equation", "flipped you station to station".
    I think the lines in the Chorus "you are not me" and "you and what army" are cases, they make against each other, and "Arlandria" is Daves wish to be at home now, and forget all the stress and fame and life with the band. Maybe the lines "Oh god you gotta make it stop" and "my sweet virginia" confirm my point of view.

    I also hered Dave saying in an interview, that his family helps him when the things start outgrowing.

    So maybe I'm on the right way
    Sneekon April 11, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis should link to an MTV video where he says all those things about living in Virginia:
    mtv.com/videos/news/630980/…

    Just to narrow down the location some more, "Arlandria" usually refers to a specific neighborhood area around the border between Arlington and Alexandria.

    The first thing I thought of when I heard the song was this older song "Headwires," where he mentions the name in the end of the song:
    songmeanings.net/songs/view/2282/

    I also felt like there might be some David Bowie references with both "station to station" and him explicitly saying "fame." It's implied that he's stressed about life, and it's obvious that he's famous, so I don't know if it would be necessary unless it was a reference. On the other hand, it seems like an intentionally simple and stream-of-consciousness kind of song.

    It sounds to me like the kind of arguments couples in a marriage or long term relationship might have.
    hardcorevelouron April 12, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General Comment this a quote from youtube
    Actually you're wrong. I grow up and go to the same school Dave went to as a kid. Arlington and Alexandria are the two counties our school is located between and a place where Dave lived as a kid. Trust me, stop spreading
    kwahion July 17, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song reminds me of my mother and the relationship we don't have. I couldn't figure out why there were two names so I went and looked up the meaning of Arlandria - "Defender of men". Which in turn inspired me to look up the meaning of Virginia - "Maiden", personally for me I found this interesting.
    natasmaion April 07, 2012   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationI hadn't researched this at all when I wrote this, so I don't know what it's actually about. I feel like this interpretation fits pretty well except for a piece or two. This has reminded me of a situation I was in that was very frustrating with a girl where everything was right but I couldn't give her the time she wanted and it caused me to back out because I couldn't bare to go on and her never be truly happy.


    Ain't that the way it always starts
    A simple round of conversation
    Became a shameful equation
    I flipped you station to station
    A relationship starting and morphing into something painful.
    When the troubles came, the writer tries to find what is the base of the problems.

    Hey, don't go and turn the other way
    Don't say there's nothing more to say
    Come on, hear me out, hush, hush, settle down
    Button up don't make a sound
    As he’s sifting through all these things in his mind, he’s trying to talk them out with the partner. It’s turmoil for the other person, not knowing why the writer is even having problems. He keeps asking for the partner to just stick around while he figures it out.

    Shame, shame, go away
    Come again some other day
    You used to say I couldn't save you enough
    So I've been savin' it up, I started savin' it up

    It’s hurtful to the writer that he’s stirring the pot—in his mind, he doesn’t know whether the problems are real, or whether he’s just making them up. Finally, he suspects that his partner is expecting too much of him: time, attention, energy…

    And when you said I couldn't give you enough,
    I started givin' you up, I started givin' you up
    You are not me, Arlandria, Arlandria,
    You and what army, Arlandria, Arlandria
    Oh God you gotta make it stop

    And he realizes the terrible truth of it all. If he just gives her the time she wants, he wouldn’t be happy. If he keeps going on without changing anything, he knows she’ll be unhappy. The only option is to just draw away entirely. He’s frustrated now, they’re different people, he’s been trapped into this position by her, and he needs her to be more realistic.

    Chase all of those memories away
    Save them all for another day
    Don't you remember it was rain that drowned you

    This line could be about her or him. (if her): her past has caused her to be the way she is now, and reminds her that it will cause problems again, like in the past with whomever else. (if him): he’s frustrated with himself and just wants to forget about the relationship. His ill perception is what got him there, and he needs to remember to cast it away.

    Wait, I wanna see if you can change
    I wanna keep all I can take
    I feel much better now
    Use me up, spit me out, let me be your hand-me-down
    Fame, fame, go away, come again some other day

    This is pleading with the situation. He decides to give it a shot again, maybe she can lower her expectations. He’s a little reckless now: I’ll handle anything on my end, let’s just try this. He’s frustrated with fame and all of other life’s distractions, if they weren’t there they might not be having problems.

    You used to say I couldn't save you enough
    So I've been savin' it up, I started savin' it up
    And when you said I couldn't give you enough
    I started givin' you up, I started givin' you up
    You are not me, Arlandria, Arlandria
    You and what army, Arlandria, Arlandria
    Oh God you gotta make it stop

    This is the same as concept as when he decided he had to draw away (above).
    My sweet Virginia
    I'm the same as I was in your arm
    My sweet Virginia
    I'm the same as I was in your arm

    I’m not sure. Maybe he’s things are getting rocky again and he wants to remind her he’s the same as he was in the past.

    Shame, shame go away, come again some other day
    Memories keep haunting me, help me chase them all away
    Hush, now, settle down, button up, don't make a sound
    Close your eyes, turn around, help me burn this to the ground
    Come now, take the blame, that's OK I'll play the game
    I don't care it's all the same, watch it all go up in flames
    Use me up, spit me out, let me be your hand-me-down
    Fame, fame, go away, come again some other day

    He’s lost his will now and he’s pissed at the situation—relationship, aspiration, haunting memories.

    You used to say I couldn't save you enough
    So I've been savin' it up, I started savin' it up
    And when you said I couldn't give you enough
    I started givin' you up, I started givin' you up
    You are not me, Arlandria, Arlandria
    You and what army, Arlandria, Arlandria
    Oh God you gotta make it stop

    My sweet Virginia
    Oh God you gotta make it stop
    My sweet Virginia
    Oh God you gotta make it stop
    He’s pleading for the situation to stop.
    weezillaon October 28, 2013   Link

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