Song Analysis “Sing” My Chemical Romance

Sing it out

Boy, you got to see what tomorrow brings

Sing it out

Girl, you got to be what tomorrow needs

For every time that they want to count you out

Use your voice

Every single time you open up your mouth

[Counting someone out means deeming a person to be of little value. The speaker commands the listener to speak up rather than sit by idly as people belittle him or her. When the speaker says, “Use your voice/ Every single time you open your mouth,” it might seems kind of redundant. Obviously when you open your mouth to speak, you use your voice. But I think “use” here implies using a thing to achieve good. So what he’s really saying is to use your voice to solve problems around you.]

Sing it for the boys

Sing it for the girls

Every time that you lose it,

Sing it for the world

Sing it from the heart

Sing it til you’re nuts

Sing it out for the ones that’ll hate your guts

Sing it for the deaf

Sing it for the blind

Sing about everyone that you left behind

[Why would you “sing it for the deaf?” It makes no sense to sing to people who cannot hear you. Or does it? The message seems to be that you need to sing for yourself, even if no one hears you, because of the positive way it makes you feel. The blind can appreciate the sound of your voice but they cannot perceive your gestures, your body language. Let’s go beyond the literal. Who is symbolically deaf or blind? People who refuse to listen to you are, in a way, deaf. People who turn away from you are blind. Every artist knows he or she will not reach everyone. One might think they would just write off these people and not give them a second thought. But when you sing for the people who will never hear you or see you, what you are really doing is singing to change the world so that even people who don’t appreciate you feel the influence of your words unknowingly. The verse “Sing it for the ones who’ll hate your guts” supports this interpretation. A bold singer does not just “preach to the choir,” but instead tries to convert the nonbelievers.]

Sing it for the world

Sing it for the world

Sing it out

Boy, they’re gonna sell what tomorrow means

Sing It Out

Girl, they’re gonna kill what tomorrow brings

You’ve got to, make a choice

If the music drowns you out

And raise your voice,

Every single time they try and shut your mouth

[“They’re gonna sell what tomorrow means.” The verb “sell” has a bad connotation. It is like “to sell out” or “to exploit.” The verse reminds me of Pepsi’s “Generation Next” campaign where the corporation tried to brand itself as the choice of America’s youth. What’s sinister about this is that older adults are trying to define the identity of the young rather than letting them define themselves. In a similar vein, he says, “they’re gonna kill what tomorrow brings.” There may be an underlying message of conservation here. Polluting the planet and exterminating species not only robs our present but our future as well.]

[Refrain]

Cleaned up corporation progress

Dying in the process

Children that can talk about it

Living on the webways

People moving sideways

Sell it till your last days

[This part talks about people living static lives that go nowhere. They are living on the web. I might know something about that. They are moving sideways, in other words, they are not moving forward, but they feel like they are. There is a dichotomy in this song between “sing” and “sell.” Singing represents expression, freedom, and youth. Selling, in contrast, represents silence, oppression,  and death. Sure that sounds harsh, but he’s not saying anyone who sells anything is a hell-spawned demon. It’s a metaphor.]

Buy yourself the motivation

Generation nothing

Nothing but a dead scene

Product of a white dream

[This part is disturbingly cynical, especially juxtaposed with the rest of the song. “Generation nothing” may be a parody of the names generations have been assigned like “Generation X” and “Generation Y.” He’s implying that there is no future. The youth of today have nothing to anticipate. The “white dream” suggests that minorities have no voice in deciding the future.]

I am not the singer that you wanted,

but a dancer

I refuse to answer

Talk about the past, Sir

and wrote it for the ones who want to get away

Keep running

[I may be a bit of a fanboy but the beginning of this stanza reminds me of the end of “The Dark Knight.” Here he says he is not the singer the audience wanted. Similarly, at the end of TDK, Batman is described as “not the hero Gotham wants, but the one it needs.” We often want something different from what we really need. We want to be rich but we need to be humble. We want to be popular but we need to be self-reliant. The speaker could easily talk about partying and drinking to increase his popularity. Instead he talks about corporate hegemony and a dystopian future. But by recognizing the forces trying to control us, we can reclaim our freedom and ensure a bright future.]

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