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> What Do These Songs Mean?, Interpreting the Eagles and Ronnie James Dio
What are they singing about?
Hotel California by the Eagles is about....
an actual California [ 2 ] ** [14.29%]
a story about a drug trip [ 6 ] ** [42.86%]
a love story [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
a ghost story [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
a political commentary [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
a yearning for a by-gone era [ 1 ] ** [7.14%]
a metaphor for humanity [ 3 ] ** [21.43%]
nothing in particular [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
None of these. You fail again Spiderusalem [ 2 ] ** [14.29%]
Holy Diver by Ronnie James Dio is about....
A religious submariner [ 1 ] ** [7.14%]
being down too long in the midnight sea [ 1 ] ** [7.14%]
how messed up the government is [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
being chased by something [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
riding tigers [ 1 ] ** [7.14%]
a metaphor for humanity [ 3 ] ** [21.43%]
nothing in particular [ 1 ] ** [7.14%]
everything at the same time, all at once [ 1 ] ** [7.14%]
None of these. Your incompetence knows no bounds Spiderusalem [ 6 ] ** [42.86%]
BONUS QUESTION: How much do the lyrics/singing matter in a song?
Its the most important thing in a song [ 1 ] ** [7.14%]
Its just as important as everything else [ 11 ] ** [78.57%]
Its not as important as the lead guitar. [ 1 ] ** [7.14%]
Its not as important as anything else. [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
I could care less about lyrics/singing. [ 1 ] ** [7.14%]
Total Votes: 14
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post Nov 1 2007, 10:01 AM
Post #1


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Lyrics to Hotel California

Holy Diver Lyrics

If you havn't heard these songs yet, please, PLEASE look them up right now. Its important smile.gif

Equipment: Classical/Jazz hybrid guitar. blunt/black humor.

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post Nov 1 2007, 11:30 AM
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I am going to attempt to express the thoughts that pop up into my head while I listen to Hotel California...

I think that it is a metaphor for humanity, and our drive for power and money.

Let me try to explain:

It starts by saying:
"Up ahead in the distance,
I saw a shimmering light,
My head grew heavy and my sight grew dim."

To me this is the persons first recognition of money, and their attraction to it represented by the "shimmering light." As we get attracted to money, we fall in love and our drive for most other things go numb: "My head grew heavy and my sight grew dim."

The next part:
"I had to stop for the night
There she stood in the doorway;
I heard the mission bell
And I was thinking to myself,
’this could be heaven or this could be hell’"

This is humans giving into the temptation that is the "high life" so to speak. We see it right in front of us, we want it. We will do anything to get it. This is the part where "this could be heaven or this could be hell" plays a role. People will do anything to get what they want, some play the game of life fairly and work hard to get what they want, ie Heaven. Others are dirty and deceitful in their ways, they whatever they want to get things they want. Murder, steal, lie, etc, ie Hell.

The Chorus:
"Welcome to the Hotel California
Such a lovely place
Such a lovely face
Plenty of room at the Hotel California
Any time of year, you can find it here"

The Hotel California is the world, the world we live in and shape everyday. It is portrayed by the rich as "a lovely place." This continues and promotes the drive for material goods to those who seek them.

"Her mind is Tiffany-Twisted, she got the mercedes bends
She got a lot of pretty, pretty boys, that she calls friends
How they dance in the courtyard, sweet summer sweat.
Some dance to remember, some dance to forget"

This is portraying someone who has "made it" so to speak, but got there through corrupt ways. "Her mind is Tiffany-Twisted." She creates unlawful ways to get what she wants. But she gets what she wants: the Mercedes, the "pretty pretty boys." "That she calls friends," they are not really friends they just are trying to be successful in life and they play along with someone who has "made it" already and they are leeching off her, just waiting for the time where they can take over. "Some dance to remember, some dance to forget," they know what they are doing is wrong, so they try to forget.

"So I called up the captain,
’please bring me my wine’
He said, ’we haven’t had that spirit here since 1969’
And still those voices are calling from far away,
Wake you up in the middle of the night"

I believe this is the Eagles' reference to that last big thing in our history that was of pure intentions. Woodstock 1969. Which promoted peace, love, and happiness. Just a bunch of hippies who weren't looking for material things in their life, they just wanted to have fun and for everyone to get along. The "captain" brings up this "spirit" because the singer says "please," something you will not usually hear out of a rich man's mouth.

Then again with the chorus, but with two different lines at the end of the stanza:
"They livin’ it up at the Hotel California
What a nice surprise, bring your alibis"

The people in the Hotel California are "livin' it up," they've "made it" in life. But not necessarily in the most lawful of ways. So they tell you to "bring your alibis," so that when the police come-a-knockin' you have an alibi to stand by your side.

The next part:
"Mirrors on the ceiling,
The pink champagne on ice
And she said ’we are all just prisoners here, of our own device’
And in the master’s chambers,
They gathered for the feast
The stab it with their steely knives,
But they just can’t kill the beast"

This is about the woman from earlier, who now is entering old age and approaching death. She wants to repent for what she knows she has done wrong. She can see what she has done wrong in her life from the "Mirrors on the ceiling." "We are all just prisoners here, of our own device," is her telling the singer that she knows what she has done is wrong, and that she created this hell for herself, and it is a warning to the singer not to pursue the same things as she did, not to be like the others. "They gathered for the feast. They stab it with their steely knives, but they just can’t kill the beast." That last three lines of the stanza are the realization by all that they have created a monster by hunting for a material life, they try to kill the idea but it has too much of a following for it to ever die. They cannot kill the beast they have created.

"Last thing I remember, I was
Running for the door
I had to find the passage back
To the place I was before
’relax,’ said the night man,
We are programmed to receive.
You can checkout any time you like,
But you can never leave! "

He realizes that he does not want this life for himself, he does not need the material goods to be happy. He is trying to find "the passage back, to the place [he] was before," but he cannot find it. He is already to far into the game. "Relax, said the night man. We are programmed to receive." I think these are the corporations and big names in the world that entice you to pursue the "high life." "You can checkout anytime you like, but you can never leave!" The night man(corporations) tells the singer that he is already in, there is no backing out now. Once you have chosen this lifestyle there will always be some part of you that wants the material life, and you can never escape that.


In regards to your third question. I think that lyrics are what makes a great song great. Sure the instrumental playing has to be amazing, but if you do not have lyrics that mean something, it will never be the biggest thing. I'm not saying that people like Steve Vai and Buckethead aren't great musicians. I'm just saying that they will never get the worldwide recognition as someone like Led Zeppelin has(for lyrical wonders such as Stairway to Heaven). They won't get the recognition only because you really have to have played the guitar to respect the full effect and difficulty level of what they are playing. So my vote goes towards the lyrics being the most important part of a song.
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Chris Evans
post Nov 1 2007, 06:59 PM
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Wow! thats some answer Animosity smile.gif

very deep smile.gif

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post Nov 1 2007, 07:28 PM
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To Animositys interpretion of the lyrics I can only say WOW....

I think they were just high as kites and wrote about it... like with all songs from the 60-70's wink.gif

With Dio, I think it's all about that, being down too long in the mignight sea laugh.gif Riding the tiger, killing the witch, looking out, damning the evil, watching ones back or evil thunder are other themes that are high on the list... but in this case.. Being holy, and a diver, and being down too long in the midnight sea... that's how I analyze it. cool.gif
With Dio in general I think if it sounds cool and involves "wicth", "tiger" or "evil" the cool factor is increased even more and it's great to sing.

However, I think Animosity made a mush better job analyzing though I stick to my belife of being high or using cool words is the case wink.gif
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