"Synesthesia" as written by and Andrew Ross Mcmahon Mark Carl Stolinkski Williams....
I saw pictures from the space shuttle
Of America tonight
I could almost see my house
I could almost see the rest of my life
And my mother's in the hospital
And my friends are in the news
Collecting trophies for the songs they wrote
While we lived in the shadow of the moon

Yes, I never made a gold record
And I've never been to Mars
But I've traveled around this world
Shooting fireworks and falling stars, and prison bars

And my father's got a decent job
And he's finally pulling through
There's more to life than singing songs we wrote
While we lived in the shadow of the moon

And I see colors when I hear your voice
Put on your wings that put gravity on trial
And I see colors, I don't hear the noise
Because we're only flying for a while
Because we're only flying for a while

I saw this picture of my niece
Twisting high above the narrow beam
And my brother looked so proud
Like he woke up in this perfect dream

And I've known you all my life
But I knew you long before that tune
Let's go dancing to the songs we wrote
When we lived in the shadow of the moon

And I see colors when I hear your voice
Put on your wings that put gravity on trial
I see colors, I don't hear the noise
Because we're only flying for a while

And I could love you in the falling rain
Like many things, this is a storm we're meant to ride
Like synesthesia aboard a stalling plane
It's like we're only flying for a while
Flying for a while

Whoooaaaaaaa (x3)

And I see colors when I hear your voice
Put on your wings that put gravity on trial
I see colors, and I don't feel the choice
Because we're only flying for a while

And I could love you in the falling rain
Like many things, this is a storm we're meant to ride
Like synesthesia aboard a stalling plane
It's like we're only flying for a while

Flying for a while
Flying for a while
Flying for a while
Whoaaaaaaaaaaaa


Lyrics submitted by SomthinCorporat, edited by betaLyrae, EBM5, vClaudiam

"Synesthesia" as written by Mark Carl Stolinkski Williams Andrew Ross Mcmahon

Lyrics © SONGS MUSIC PUBLISHING

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Synesthesia song meanings
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3 Comments

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  • +2
    General Comment"And my friends are in the news
    Collecting trophies for the songs they wrote
    When we lived in the shadow of the moon"

    Could he be talking about the Format here? AKA Fun. I think so!
    heartincubuson May 26, 2013   Link
  • 0
    My OpinionI love this song so much.
    lovelikearoseon April 25, 2013   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationI've always been a huge Andrew McMahon fan, and I'm so happy I got to see this performed a few weeks ago.

    Although it's stylistically a bit different from JM, the quality of the lyrics is equally incredible

    I saw pictures from the space shuttle
    North America at night
    I could almost see my house
    I could almost see the rest of my life
    Now my mothers in the hospital
    And my friends are in the news
    Collecting trophies for the songs they wrote
    When we lived in the shadow of the moon


    This first section seems to be a reflection about time and space. He uses every tense, reflecting on where he and everyone he loves are in past, present, and future. I noticed he uses a lot of the same metaphors in many of his songs, like references to space and airplanes. Pictures from a space shuttle are removed and only capture moments. Living in the shadow of the moon is a reminder that for most people; all the emotion of their accomplishments and trials are dwarfed when taken from the context of a larger world.
    And I have never been to mars
    But I’ve traveled ’round this world
    Shooting fireworks at falling stars
    No prison bars
    And my fathers got a decent job
    I hear he’s finally pulling through
    There’s more to life than singing songs we write
    When we are in the shadow of the moon

    This verse seems like a very modest way of summing up his experience, but a line like "shooting fireworks at falling stars" connotes a power to add color to the scenery and affect a visible change. (reminds me of "down"). Saying there's more to life than the songs he writes (that most either won't hear or understand) is a foreshadowing of the next verses adding more to the equation with being in love. It doesn’t matter if you’re invisible to everyone else as long as there’s someone who can appreciate the emotions of your experience.

    I see colors
    When I hear your voice
    Grab your wings they’re putting gravity on trial
    I see colors
    I don’t hear the noise
    Because we’re only flying for a while
    Because we’re only flying for a while

    The idea of synesthesia, or hearing color in this case is a phenomena often associated with the use of psychedelics. My first DMT experience especially comes to mind, where the whole world came at me in this rainbow wave of soothing energy, assuring me that all the work I had done trying to find myself had led me right to this perfect moment. It's something very powerful, but I feel like Andrew captures it quite well with the emotion he puts into the chorus. Flying for a while is a reminder that life is temporary, a point emphasized repeatedly on “People and Things”, but the fleetingness shouldn't deter leaping for that ultimate sensation.

    I saw a picture of my niece
    Twisting high above a narrow beam
    And my brother looked so proud
    Like he woke up in this perfect dream
    And I’ve know you all my life
    But I knew you long before that too
    Lets go dancing to the songs we wrote
    When we lived in the shadow of the moon

    The first line about his brother living vicariously through his child's success makes a poignant point; like there’s this stage in your life where you're no longer dreaming and have finally settled down. The image of his niece flying above a beam is beautiful to me because it’s another picture, frozen in time; her youth and her grace and her momentary inability to fall. It seems like Andrew and friends are still celebrating the moment of their own success, which is an interesting contrast.

    I see colors
    When I hear your voice
    Grab your wings
    They’re putting gravity on trial
    I see colors
    I don’t hear the noise
    Sometimes you’re only flying for a while
    I could love you
    In the falling rain
    Grab your wings
    This is a storm we’re meant to ride
    Like Synesthesia
    Aboard a stalling plane
    It’s like we’re only flying for a while

    Riding in a storm reminds me of "hurricane", aboard a stalling plane is just like "bruised", and falling rain immediately brings to mind "kill the messenger". I love that only someone who knew his lyrics inside out would notice these trends, so he feels safe recycling and reinventing these old ideas behind the shadow of the moon with no spot light.

    I see colors
    When I hear your voice
    Grab your wings
    They’re putting gravity on trial
    I see colors
    I don’t fear the choice
    Because we’re only flying for a while
    And I could love you
    In the falling rain
    Grab your wings
    This is the storm we’re meant to ride
    Like Synesthesia
    Aboard a stalling plane
    Sometimes we’re only flying for a while

    The idea of not fearing choice is a strong implication that he has at least a few things about life figured out. Endings are not to be feared and falling from the air is essential to learning. We move through all these stages of life shielded from the view of all but those closest. Tracing out the colors of the most beautiful experience requires kinds of magic like flying and synesthesia, but it's the perceived impossibility that makes it all the more resonant.

    I can see the colors running
    When I hear the music play
    serenity23on May 02, 2013   Link

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