This is my contribution to Song Lyric Sunday for Jim Adams’s blog. This week’s prompt…Come/Go/Leave/Stay
From the 1994 Reality Bites soundtrack and from her 1995 album, Tails. The song peaked at #1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart on August 19, 1994.
In our interview with Lisa Loeb
, she explained: “At the time I was having arguments with my boyfriend, who was actually my co-producer as well – we made records together. And then I go off into some other areas: I remember somebody close to me was going through severe, severe depression. A lot of times in my songs, I get into some phase where I describe some other situation, and there’s a whole verse in there about somebody who is very, very depressed. But yeah, it was a story about a breakup I was going through, and that situation where it’s gotten into your head too much. Partially because somebody else is telling you that you’re only hearing what you want to, and that puts you in a little bit of a tailspin. It puts me in a little bit of a tailspin, because you can’t figure out what’s actually real, are you only seeing things through your own eyes? Are you actually seeing things the way that they really are, or are you making things up? And at what point do you know whether you’re seeing things the way that they really are?”
This was used in the movie Reality Bites. Loeb’s friend, Ethan Hawke, brought it to the attention of Ben Stiller, who saw Loeb perform and used her song in his movie. It was a huge break for Loeb, who did not have a record deal at the time. When she found out the song was going on the soundtrack, she knew it was the end of her temp work – she had a gig with the consulting firm Ernst & Young at the time).
Long before this song became a hit, Loeb performed it at her shows, where it got a great response and was one of her most requested songs. Says Loeb: “I usually write songs that are more fictional, and for some reason when I sat down to write that song, I let myself write more about how I was feeling at that moment. And that’s something I think about a lot as I continue to write music, that the songs that I write that are more personal and without as much editing, are the ones that people connect to more.”
Stay (I Missed You)
You say I only hear what I want to
You say I talk so all the time so.
And I thought what I felt was simple,
And I thought that I don’t belong,
And now that I am leaving,
Now I know that I did something wrong ’cause I missed you.
Yeah, I missed you.
And you say I only hear what I want to:
I don’t listen hard,
I don’t pay attention to the distance that you’re running
Or to anyone, anywhere,
I don’t understand if you really care,
I’m only hearing negative: no, no, no (bad)
And so I, I turned the radio on, I turned the radio up
And this woman was singin’ my song:
The lover’s in love and the other’s run away,
The lover is cryin’ ’cause the other won’t stay.
Some of us hover when we weep for the other who was
Dying since the day they were born.
Well, this is not that:
I think that I’m throwing, but I’m thrown.
And I thought I’d live forever, but now I’m not so sure.
You try to tell me that I’m clever,
But that won’t take my anyhow, or anywhere with you.
You said that I was naive,
And I thought that I was strong.
I thought, “hey, I can leave, I can leave.”
Oh but now I know that I was wrong, ’cause I missed you.
You said, “I caught you ’cause I want you and one day I’ll let you go.”
You try to give away a keeper, or keep me ’cause you know you’re just so scared to lose.
And you say, “Stay.”
You say I only hear what I want to.
Writer/s: Lisa A. Loeb