Some people stay far away from the door
If there's a chance of it opening up
They hear a voice in the hall outside
And hope that it just passes by

Some people live with the fear of a touch
And the anger of having been a fool
They will not listen to anyone
So nobody tells them a lie

I know you're only protecting yourself
I know you're thinking of somebody else
Someone who hurt you
But I'm not above
Making up for the love
You've been denying you could ever feel
I'm not above doing anything
To restore your faith if I can
Some people see through the eyes of the old
Before they ever get a look at the young
I'm only willing to hear you cry
Because I am an innocent man
I am an innocent man
Oh yes I am

Some people say they will never believe
Another promise they hear in the dark
Because they only remember too well
They heard somebody tell them before

Some people sleep all alone every night
Instead of taking a lover to bed
Some people find that it's easier to hate
Than to wait anymore

I know you don't want to hear what I say
I know you're gonna keep turning away
But I've been there and if I can survive
I can keep you alive
I'm not above going through it again
I've not above being cool for a while
If you're cruel to me I'll understand

Some people run from a possible fight
Some people figure they can never win
And although this is a fight I can lose
The accused is an innocent man
I am an innocent man
Oh yes I am
An innocent man

You know you only hurt yourself out of spite
I guess you'd rather be a martyr tonight
That's your decision
But I'm not below
Anybody I know
If there's a chance of resurrecting a love
I'm not above going back to the start
To find out where the heartache began

Some people hope for a miracle cure
Some people just accept the world as it is
But I'm not willing to lay down and die
Because I am an innocent man

I am an innocent man
Oh yes I am
An innocent man


Lyrics submitted by kevin

An Innocent Man Lyrics as written by Billy Joel

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

An Innocent Man song meanings
Add Your Thoughts

8 Comments

sort form View by:
  • +2
    General Comment

    This song is really cool. It's about a guy trying to get a woman who has been hurt before to trust him. He is an "innocent man" because he never hurt her, but he's suffering the consequences. However he isn't afraid to help her pull through.

    Good OL MCon June 14, 2003   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    This song is brillant, billy joel is an amazing artist. He is a innocent man , and yes she has been hurt and he loves her and is trying to make her see that not all men are the same,more or less give him ago.

    mylillyon April 08, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    These are some of the greatest verses he ever wrote. Of course not suitable for children. Go, go away where you belong to Justin Timberlake or Britney, whatever.

    You have to have lived to understand. I love the way he tries to put even the smallest feelings into pieces. This guy is a true psychological troubadour. But you can also feel real pain through those words in the most essential language. As if he wouldn't care to put himself naked in front of the world.

    le fer et le feuon April 04, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    Great song with a classic Ben E. King beat.

    crdesqon February 25, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    This is pretty much viewed from the other side of "And so it goes."

    TehGreatMutatoon December 29, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    This song is so rich...for someone who wrote this because he was snowbound, he must have really been ruminating during this storm! Anyway, I agree that this is the other side of "And So It Goes" (one of my fave BJ songs ever...) and it is all about not having our minds color our present with our past. We have to give the new people and new situations that come to us a chance...no matter if a similar situation blew up in our face before. This song is all about being mature enough to say, "You know what, yeah that sucked big time and I don't ever wanna go through a hell like that again, but this is not that and you are not them and I think I will screw up the courage and have faith in you and in myself". THAT is what this song is about...and I think he has exemplified this through his own relationships. PEACE!

    HopeFloats72on April 08, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    Most of the world is cynical and immobilized, but I choose to live life to the fullest.

    lizardkingpon May 27, 2011   Link
  • -1
    General Comment

    This song was actually written while Billy was stuck in his house due to a snow storm. So he wrote down the lyrics "Some people stay far away from the door" ...but then Billy claimed for some reason it turned into a man-women lovey song.

    pianodudeon November 21, 2007   Link

Add your thoughts

Log in now to tell us what you think this song means.

Don’t have an account? Create an account with SongMeanings to post comments, submit lyrics, and more. It’s super easy, we promise!

More Featured Meanings

Album art
Spirit Within
Bertoldi Brothers
Warren wanted a Beach Boys thing for this one, and Carl Wilson and Billy Hinsche came in, with Carl arranging the vocal parts. The other harmony vocalists (credited as the "Gentlemen Boys") were Jackson Browne, J.D. Souther, Zevon's longtime backers Waddy Wachtel and Jorge Calderon, and Linda Rondstadt/Stone Poneys guitarist Kenny Edwards.
Album art
Show Me a Little Shame
Ben Harper & the Innocent Criminals
He certainly did earn that reputation.
Album art
when rules change
Life in Your Way
High life
Album art
The Night We Met
Lord Huron
This is a hauntingly beautiful song about introspection, specifically about looking back at a relationship that started bad and ended so poorly, that the narrator wants to go back to the very beginning and tell himself to not even travel down that road. I believe that the relationship started poorly because of the lines: "Take me back to the night we met:When the night was full of terrors: And your eyes were filled with tears: When you had not touched me yet" So, the first night was not a great start, but the narrator pursued the relationship and eventually both overcame the rough start to fall in love with each other: "I had all and then most of you" Like many relationships that turn sour, it was not a quick decline, but a gradual one where the narrator and their partner fall out of love and gradually grow apart "Some and now none of you" Losing someone who was once everything in your world, who you could confide in, tell your secrets to, share all the most intimate parts of your life, to being strangers with that person is probably one of the most painful experiences a person can go through. So Painful, the narrator wants to go back in time and tell himself to not even pursue the relationship. This was the perfect song for "13 Reasons Why"
Album art
Dreamwalker
Silent Planet
I think much like another song “Anti-Matter” (that's also on the same album as this song), this one is also is inspired by a horrifying van crash the band experienced on Nov 3, 2022. This, much like the other track, sounds like it's an extension what they shared while huddled in the wreckage, as they helped frontman Garrett Russell stem the bleeding from his head wound while he was under the temporary effects of a concussion. The track speaks of where the mind goes at the most desperate & desolate of times, when it just about slips away to all but disconnect itself, and the aftermath.