"A Certain Shade of Green" as written by Randy Muller, Incubus,, Roger Mcbride and Mark S. Jordan....
A certain shade of green
Tell me, is that what you need?
All signs around say, "Move ahead"
Could someone please explain to me
You're ever present lack of speed?
Are your muscles bound by ropes
Or do crutches cloud your day?
My sources say, "The road is clear
And street signs point the way"

Are you gonna stand around 'til 2012 a.d?
What are you waitin' for
A certain shade of green?
I think I grew a gray watchin' you procrastinate
What are you waitin' for
A certain shade of green?

Would a written invitation
Signed, "Choose now or lose it all"
Sedate your hesitation
Or inflame and make you stall?
You've been raised in limitation
But that glove never fit quite right
The time has passed for hand-me-downs
Choose a new, please evolve
Take flight

Are you gonna stand around 'til 2012 a.d?
What are you waitin' for
A certain shade of green?
I think I grew a gray watchin' you procrastinate
(Talk that thing)

Green?
What are you waitin'?
What are you waitin'?
What are you waitin' for?
What are you waitin'?
What are you waitin'?
What are you waitin' for?

What are you waitin' for?
What are you waitin'?
What are you waitin'?
What are you waitin' for?
What are you waitin' for?
Waitin' for?

I think I grew a gray watchin' you procrastinate
Are you gonna stand around till 2012 a.d?
What are you waitin' for
A certain shade of green?
I think I grew a gray watchin' you procrastinate
What are you waitin' for?


Lyrics submitted by Idan

"A Certain Shade of Green" as written by Brandon Charles Boyd Brandon Boyd

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group

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A Certain Shade of Green song meanings
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  • +8
    General CommentI don't see this song being abotu marijuana at all (and for all I know, I may be the only person) To me, this song is a lot like Drive. It tells you that you are the only one that can make your decisions, and do what you need to do. Don't procrastinate and wait for the right moment, or green light, if it never comes or you miss it, you'll never know what might have happened
    Gobsowon January 24, 2002   Link
  • +3
    General CommentI always felt it's a song urging progression for one to move on to try and achieve happiness or ones goals/dreams. "What are you waiting for? A certain shade of green?" as someone waiting for everything to be perfect before starting work but something is always off so they continuously procrastinate for various reasons.. Song urges that the time to go and achieve your goals and get your desires is now. "2012 ad" could be are you going to do nothing until the year comes? or simply are you going to procrastinate and do nothing until you die?

    Some other good interpretations here though.
    zakbrownon February 22, 2011   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI am an artist, and when I hear the lyrics and think of the title "A Certain Shade Of Green" the immediate meaning that pops up in my head is getting the right shade of a color. Many ppl are profectionist and must wait their whole lives for things to be just so. Being a painter, I know how it is to waste a bunch of time getting a certain color. It's probaly not what Boyd was thinking when he wrote the song, but its what I get. All of you guy's song meanings are really intresting, I think they are all very valid for this song. Rock on!!
    DaDreadlockChickon June 02, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General CommentTHIS IS WHERE I AM A GENIOUS! This song is not about marijuana, this song is not about a green light and not about a green traffic light. Here goes my Story. A Certain shade of green pertains to the Mayan Indians and The Shaman indians. The Mayans calendar year ends in the year 2012 AD. This is the predicted end of the world for many The Exact date of this is December 21, 2012. Brandon is hugely spiritual and got this way by studying the Mayan Indians it says in a few interviews he was taught by a woman who was a genious in mysticism. Also, the shade of green is by the Shaman indians. IF ANY OF YOU HAS READ THE BOOK PHOENIX RISING by Mary Summer Rain (I am almost positive Brandon Has Read this book). When the Phoenix days are near, The sky will turn a certain shade of green due to the negativity and pollution of the world. Also, when Brandon warns about procrastination, he thinks that it is not a good Idea to wait for the Pheonix days to come around just to warn people. I wish i could explain this better, but there is only so much you can type out to people, with out talking tothem in person. But this is definitely what it is about. The drastic change that is about to occur if us as a civilization and as a human race stays on this greedy, money grabbing trail. Almost all of his songs are about this type of thing. IF YOU HAVE NOT READ PHOENIX RISING i suggest you do, all of his songs have some inkling of reference to this book, or this type of thing. (Warning, Nice to Know You, and the rest of them.) Brandon, as well as the rest of the band are very easily misunderstood when it comes to lyrics. Anyway, if you like these things, another good song that is somewhat like this is AENEMA by tool. Listen to the lyrics. P.S. Mother Nature always wins in the end. Thanks!
    pooleyachton June 04, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThe first time I listened to this song, I thought it was referring to money, like basically asking if your only motivation is money and saying you won't do anything unless you get paid for it. But then I listened to it more closely and heard all the other traffic allusions and realized that it is saying what all of you are saying. When the light is green, just go; don't sit around thinking and daydreaming or you'll miss your chance.
    ralissaon August 13, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentOne way to visualize it is you, sitting at the driver's seat, with Brandon Boyd's in the passanger seat. The light turns green. You wait 2 seconds and Brandon's just like "What the fuck, go!"
    Jezroon April 12, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThe phrase "a certain shade of green" brings to my mind a philosophical problem.

    "The Missing Shade of Blue is an example introduced by the Scottish philosopher David Hume to show that it is at least conceivable that the mind can generate an idea without first being exposed to the relevant sensory experience."

    Say you had seen all but one shade of blue (or green) could you imagine it? The idea is that the shade of the colour can be imagined because we have a concept of light and dark and of blue so a mixture of those concepts gives us all the shades their can be. Have you ever seen a shade of Green and though "Oh my God thats completely new"? Even if you had never seen it before it would be a lighter or a darker green, a concept you are already familiar with.

    I always felt that the song was saying, essentially, don't wait for that colour to turn up to complete you repetoire of shades. If you can imagine it then you can live and embrace it and move with it. Waiting for the perfect love, life or idea is just idle procratination if you want something MAKE it YOURSELF. What are you waiting for?
    Iansonon June 30, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentSee, I didn't think about the "green light" at all, but after reading these comments I noticed it. I automatically thought the lyrics proposed the "grass is always greener on the other side" quote. I LOVE "sedate your hesitation". Some people (including myself) sit around and wait for the better to come along when really they've got a perfect shade of green staring them in the face; whether it be in a relationship, a job, etc. Aside from this, I think it could mean what everyone else is saying, "act now or lose it all". Great song, great cd. Can't wait for the concert.
    CDN83on July 14, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti believe the part about a certain shade of green could be interpreted as grass, like what shade of green are you waiting for before its gone, to do something about it fading away. in reference to something like global warming or degradation of the planet. thats what i thought of first. didnt even think about the green light thing.
    yurogaon May 03, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think that as with many of Brandons lyrics, this song is about spiritual enlightenment. A certain shade of green refers the the vibratory signature of the earth which has been in yellow-green ray for centuries and it is now slowly moving toward green ray. It relates to the evolution of the planet along with its inhabitants. It is said that 2012 marks the midpoint of this evolutionary cycle and that we are starting to see our current ways of thinking and really our society as a whole is not working anymore. Brandon is encouraging all of us to stop waiting around and to make the decision to evolve.
    mikeykeyson July 11, 2010   Link

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