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  #1  
Old 08-27-2005, 02:08 PM
chickzilla chickzilla is offline
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The Collected WSTFD Meanings/Stories Information Thread

Alright, with the onslaught of new Message Board Members that have joined since Why Should the Fire Die? was released, we needed to clear up the endless repetition of "what do the songs on the album mean?" or "how were they written?". This is the place to find that answer, or to point someone else to the answers.
I tried my hardest to collect the general meaning of all of the album songs, from interviews/literature/concert stories etc. So this is the place for the song meanings. I will see what I can do to keep each explanation short and still thorough.
If you have anything else that is equally releveant to this (more articles or interviews, or concert stories where the band talks about the songs) put them here as well. But this is NOT the place to speculate further about the meanings, or the musical construction, as all of that as been rehashed and rehashed so much, there are plenty of threads revive to read what other people had to say. The links to those are provided at the end of this post.

The overall tone of the record: "If there was a presiding goal, it was to have the record leap out from the speakers, have some more immediacy to the record."- Chris (World Cafe)

Scotch and Chocolate- Sara said the song was written in one of their "song writing houses" they bought together as a band. There were few comforts in the house besides the basics, then cereal, scotch and chocolate. And out of that, came the song.

Jealous of the Moon- Apparently has no story-line of any biographical or autobiographical nature. All the band talks about is working on the co-writing process, and how this giant country waltz, they chose to put on the album, has really become one of the more powerful songs. As far as what the song says, there is a fairly clear story of a girl who has ambition, and wants great things for herself, but cannot bring herself to leave her fear behind and try.

Why Should the Fire Die- Is about the deterioration of any relationship, though Chris has said since his divorce came within close proximity to the album's recording time, it became a more personal song than it might have already been. He says this happened with several of the songs. (Paste Magazine)

Anthony- Sara said she wrote this one based off of a little ukelele lick she made up, and a magazine with the name Angelie on it, then she simply started to sing it as if she had written about a guy hence, Anthony. (Amazon.com interview) No obvious biographical/autobiographical ties there.

Can't Complain- There have been many times Chris has told the audiences at concerts that this song was written about a friend/friends of his. So it IS biographical, but not autobiographical. In "Can't Complain," a seriously deluded character guesses that he and his ultimately lost girlfriend "kidnapped each other's minds, Chris says the song "comes from an apathetic guy whose comfort with his own behavior becomes markedly uncomfortable for the listener." (from the .com biography)

Helena- "Helena," Chris says, "builds massively, because this character is deteriorating before your eyes." (.com biography) and (the chracter) is "just not a good guy" and that Chris "looks for things when I write songs that interest me or disturb me about myself, and Helena could be me if I did everything wrong, and so that's how that came about." (Amazon.com interview) The music to the song is actually part of the instrumental "Itzinay" which seems to no longer exist because Chris said no one liked it but the band. So a section of Itzinay became the music to Helena, after Eric Valentine (the producer) asked him to write a song based around the music.

Somebody More Like You- "Its funny cause I've never really written a bitterish sounding song, and I've kinda been trying to write songs that would be interesting to play ya know, solo that wasn't just plain chords, and singing. I made up the lick and then had the idea of Somebody More Like you being kinda the hook of the song, and it kinda fell out from there." (Sean, Amazon.com interview)

Stumptown- Chris Instrumental, probably titled after Portland and the Stumptown Coffee Roasters there.

First and Last Waltz- An introduction to Helena. Maybe paying hommage to The Band's movie The Last Waltz, as several people have noticed the similarity in name.

Eveline- Literally written about a character in the James Joyce short story Eveline. Eveline whole text . Pretty much just summarizes the story in musical form.

Tomorrow is a Long Time- Cover of the Bob Dylan song.

Doubting Thomas- A song about the struggles that the people go through with their faith. This is not a song about losing one's faith, or rejecting one's faith. The band has said they are Christians, and have a couple of songs that deal with their faith. [Thomas was a person who needed to see before beliving in that which seemed unbelievable.]


Best of Luck-
Written about a man and a woman who each go through some sort of infidelity within a marriage. The man is confronted with the opportunity to cheat on his wife and rejects it. He comes home and confesses to his wife about his situation, only to have her confess to him that she has had an affair with her old high school boyfriend. There is no evidence at all (that anyone has mentioned or talked about) of the origin of this song. Since all three NC members worked on the song, I would say it is most likely just a scenario, and not something biographical.

When in Rome-
A song about what it means to conform, or not conform. The title and hook line (When in Rome) come from the saying "When in Rome do as the Romans do" which means conforming to different people's standards is the best way to get through life. Obviously the band does not feel this way as the song rejects that notion entirely.
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  #2  
Old 08-27-2005, 02:10 PM
chickzilla chickzilla is offline
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Links to the Threads that also discuss WSTFD:

Links to the Threads that also discuss WSTFD:
Questions about CD Pics
Doubting Thomas
Lyrics for WSTFD
Thoughts, Favorites on WSTFD
The more Musical aspects of WSTFD
Nickel Creek and Faith Keep this one considerate please.
Songs on the new CD
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Old 08-27-2005, 02:27 PM
ncadmr ncadmr is offline
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wow great job chickzilla! Its great that all the new people will have somewhere to go to get their questions answered.
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Old 08-27-2005, 02:46 PM
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aw, Rhiannon, you're so useful! title=Smilie That took quite some time of research, I imagine, so thank you for concentrating it all in one thread! I just want to confirm that all that sounds like stuff I've heard before, thru assorted interviews & articles. Just so people know you didn't make it up. title=Wink
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Old 08-27-2005, 10:04 PM
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wow, thanks so much for the info. It was really suprising to read about each song. thanks

wow, stumptown is based about a place just 40 miles from me. That is so cool
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Old 08-27-2005, 11:42 PM
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Thanks for putting all those together title=Big.

Speakin' of song meanings, I finally understand 'Best of Luck'! I was listening to it earlier today and it finally hit me! You know how it goes 'she cries I'm so sorry'? I doesn't say anywhere that she stops crying or that it's switched to a different person so, the next line is her talking.
I know that's already been figured out but my brain finally comprehended it title=Big.
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Old 08-29-2005, 09:13 AM
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Great job! And you even have the footnotes from where the different things came from. That is great!
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I thought it was gonna be like in the movies -- you know, inspirational music, a montage: me sharpening my pencil, me reading, writing, falling asleep on a big pile of books with my glasses all crooked, 'cause in my montage, I have glasses. But real life is slow, and it's starting to hurt my occipital lobe.--Buffy Summers
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Old 08-29-2005, 03:35 PM
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Nice job on compiling everything Rhiannon!!! I know it took a lot of time and effort and just thought I'd let you know it's appreciated. Insert smiley here. Very awesome!!!!
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Old 08-31-2005, 09:30 PM
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Wonderful job Chickzilla! But where'd the sticky go??? Guess you could classify this as a bump ..
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Old 08-31-2005, 11:02 PM
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Is it taboo to ask about Chris's divorce?

I'm wondering how much that experience influenced this record.
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Old 09-01-2005, 03:41 AM
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The honest answer is that there is only so far we should plunge into their personal life as this should really be about the music.
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Old 09-01-2005, 01:54 PM
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Does anyone know if any of these songs were from "The Game", I know that there was some songs inspired by "The Game" on both Chris' and Sean's last solo album.
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Old 09-27-2005, 09:23 AM
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Re: The Collected WSTFD Meanings/Stories Information Thread

Quote:
Originally posted by chickzilla
This is the place to find that answer, or to point someone else to the answers.
Amazing, chickzilla. Absolutley amazing. Thank you.
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Old 09-29-2005, 01:57 AM
katmagny katmagny is offline
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Jealous of the Moon - is a song about a friend of Chris' who can't make up her mind on anything because she's afraid. The chorus was written by a member of the Jayhawks (Chris Thile at San Diego Borders show)
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Old 10-17-2005, 01:39 AM
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Is it just me or does it seem that there is alot more of the darker emotions showing through on this album, It seems like nickel creek is growing up... (tear) but it is quite a good thing quite a good thing
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Old 11-05-2005, 08:17 AM
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I love the distinct differences in all of their albums. Each has a different mood, like different side of their lives. I have been such a fan of their writing and I don't think that I will ever stop loving them. I have seen them once before in concert and I am preparing to see them on Veteran's day weekend in Greensboro. They are just so unique, but we can relate to their songs, and their musical talent is just fantastic.

Anywho..that was my rant! title=Big
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Old 11-06-2005, 02:18 PM
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any1 know what the next single will be?
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Old 12-30-2005, 10:05 PM
EmmieOdysseus EmmieOdysseus is offline
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I've got something to add to Stumptown . It is for sure written about the Stumptown Coffee in Portland--not just probably written about it. Chris went on a 10-minute schpeal about how the song came about (and how much he loved Stumptown) at their latest concert there (Portland).
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Old 04-26-2006, 09:53 AM
SheCantComplain SheCantComplain is offline
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has anyone ever checked this site out? http://www.songmeanings.net/artist.php?aid=466
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Old 04-26-2006, 04:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by SheCantComplain
http://www.songmeanings.net/artist.php?aid=466
Anthony is a comedically presented story about a psycho nut-job stalker who has no grasp on reality. Why do people take that so so seriously. Doe they not notice Sara's blank, spaced-off facial expression when she sings it? The loon is on another planet, completely convinced that the guy she's chasing down w/ an axe actually still loves her, and gosh dang it, she'll make him understand that if it's the last thing she ever does. Lord knows I've been there.
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Old 06-02-2006, 07:11 AM
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sara, on anthony

And this is a song I wrote about (pause) three men in my life --Sara at the 930 club, washington dc

(and she shook her head with a big sweet smile on her face before starting to sing)
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