"Bittersweet Symphony" as written by Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and Richard Ashcroft....
'Cause it's a bittersweet symphony, this life
Try to make ends meet
You're a slave to money then you die
I'll take you down the only road I've ever been down
You know the one that takes you to the places
Where all the veins meet yeah,

No change, I can't change
I can't change, I can't change
But I'm here in my mold
I am here in my mold
But I'm a million different people
From one day to the next
I can't change my mold
No, no, no, no, no

Well I never pray
But tonight I'm on my knees yeah
I need to hear some sounds that recognize the pain in me, yeah
I let the melody shine, let it cleanse my mind, I feel free now
But the airways are clean and there's nobody singing to me now

No change, I can't change
I can't change, I can't change
But I'm here in my mold
I am here in my mold
And I'm a million different people
From one day to the next
I can't change my mold
No, no, no, no, no
I can't change
I can't change

'Cause it's a bittersweet symphony, this life
Try to make ends meet
Try to find some money then you die
I'll take you down the only road I've ever been down
You know the one that takes you to the places
Where all the things meet yeah

You know I can't change, I can't change
I can't change, I can't change
But I'm here in my mold
I am here in my mold
And I'm a million different people
From one day to the next
I can't change my mold
No, no, no, no, no

I can't change my mold
No, no, no, no, no,
I can't change
Can't change my body,
No, no, no

I'll take you down the only road I've ever been down
I'll take you down the only road I've ever been down
Been down
Ever been down
Ever been down
Ever been down
Ever been down
Have you ever been down?
Have you've ever been down?


Lyrics submitted by kevin

"Bittersweet Symphony" as written by Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Richard Ashcroft

Lyrics © ABKCO Music Inc.

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Bittersweet Symphony song meanings
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  • +27
    Song MeaningThis is a brilliant song. It is about the feeling of being trapped and powerless to change your behavior or your life due to circumstances beyond your control. It is about the sense of desperation you feel as your life passes before your eyes and you struggle unsuccessfully to control and shape it. It is about the perpetual conflict between the path you want to follow and the path you are compelled to follow.

    Walking down a busy London street is a metaphor for how he feels about his life. He walks down the street and is almost hit by a passing car, runs into people, walks over a car hood that is in his path, etc. As a result everyone is annoyed — even angry with him. When a young woman confronts him physically he calmly and resolutely moves forward along his path without a trace of animosity or anger. People are critical and disdainful of the path he is walking — insisting he should be able to avoid these obstacles— to choose a better, safer and more conscientious path to walk. But he feels completely powerless to change his speed and direction. His path is mandated and not chosen by him.

    He knows emphatically that he could be different — be a better person and live a different, more meaningful life. He knows if it were merely up to him he could change (“I can change, I can change, I can change”), but the circumstances of his life have cast him into a rigid mold that keeps him on a steady trajectory, limiting his choices. It isn’t his lack of ability, intelligence, imagination or flexibility that is holding him back (“I’m a million different people from one day to the next”) but the circumstances of the culture / world into which he was born.

    He wants more meaning in his life. But the overriding importance of the pursuit of making a living is always threatening to squeeze out his uniqueness, nullify his aptitudes and mold his path to a formal structure of daily life that he had no part in designing. He wants to be a better person. Yet, he continually finds himself walking down the same familiar self-destructive paths, despite his effort to avoid them. There is never a time when he can break free of this mold because he is stuck in a pattern of behavior until he dies.

    He can’t accept this. Because this is the only life he will ever have, he is pressed with frequent internal anguish. He is on the verge of breaking and is walking through life in a fog. He doesn’t generally pray, but he is getting desperate. He gets down on his knees to pray — if only to hear the sound his own voice recognizing the frustration he feels. Any sound of compassion - any recognition of his pain - is better than the silence. He prays sincerely, earnestly and desperately. While he is pleading and making his case, his prayer is like a melody that helps him to feel better. It is a song that clears his mind, grounds him and makes him feel like he can break free of his mold and change his life. But it is a false hope. When he finishes praying there is only silence. God does not answer him. The airwaves are clean without a trace of anything but static. For all his singing, no one is singing to him now. He has no idea what to do and finds himself just as discouraged and helpless as before. There must be more to life than this (“Vanity, vanity: all is vanity and striving after the wind” ).

    This experience is a microcosm for the whole of his life — a Bittersweet Symphony. There are periods of clarity, beauty and temporary relief in his life. Yet, it is all encapsulated by an overall theme that is heart rending — like waking suddenly from a warm, peaceful dream to find that you are back in cold, dark room — unchanged and unmoved by your dreams.

    He can’t accept the path his life has taken, but he has no choice. He will be in perpetual conflict with his situation. He is immobilized in his mold and has no choice but to continue down this path, accepting all its adverse consequences, until it the path finally comes to an end at the place “where all things meet” - Death.
    akingryon December 24, 2010   Link
  • +12
    General CommentFor me it means exactly what Richard Ashcroft says before he performs it in concert. Life is like a symphony, but bittersweet in that you have rules and regulations imposed on it and that people are just governed by money and will only be as successful as the amount of it they have. As the man wrote the song, I will go along with his assessment.
    youreaskippyon July 25, 2011   Link
  • +5
    General Commentits about the belief that you should live your own life. and live that life everyday as if its your last day. cause ultimately thats all youre doing is living each day getting closer and closer to death. dont let sex and money and other material things become what defines your goals in life. very powerful song. lyrically excellent. singer is pretty ugly too.
    thslax11on February 12, 2009   Link
  • +3
    General Commentgreat song
    linkkon April 28, 2002   Link
  • +3
    General Commentdosent it just want to make you walk down the street walking into people.
    Jabbatronon May 18, 2002   Link
  • +3
    General CommentThe way I see it..hes living his life, making his money, and not real happy with the way things are..but its bittersweet, because he cant really complain. Also, the "change" he says that he can change it, he can change his unhappiness, but he is in routine, he is in his "mould"..he wants to go on in life and do his thing, but he wants it to change..and him, others, arent totally happy with it, he doesnt know what he wants (a million people from one day to the next) but he want to change it, because he needs something new.
    chiliconhollyon March 04, 2011   Link
  • +2
    General Commentthat damn violin part gets stuck in my head like no other ...
    catherinekson May 28, 2002   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThe samples from ' The Last Time ' not the original but from an orchestral album of Stones hits.
    debaser2002on August 14, 2002   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI really like Dragon's interpretation and mine is rather similar.
    I don't think this is a depressing song, rather, one of truths that all of us connect to. This song means that. We are all connected. "I'll take you down the only road I've ever been down, the one that takes you to the place where all the ends meet." I listen to this song when I am feeling stressed or meditative, pretty much two polar opposites right there. When stressed, it reminds me that we are all walking the same path and everybody else is going through something worse than I am...it's all part of life. Like many other songs, it is an interpretation of the meaning of life and how each individual is different, and yet, the same.

    Then again, that's just my opinion.
    meshi11on January 11, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Commentit tries to tell you about the diffrent stages in life that life is not easy as the same as (OTHERSIDE) but in this one they tell u of the bad things in the world peace:X:X:X:X
    claires_advocateon February 16, 2002   Link

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