Saturday, March 29, 2008

Message In A Bottle . . . The Police



Lyrics

Just a castaway, an island lost at sea, oh
Another lonely day, with no one here but me, oh
More loneliness than any man could bear
Rescue me before I fall into despair, oh

I'll send an s.o.s. to the world
I'll send an s.o.s. to the world
I hope that someone gets my
I hope that someone gets my
I hope that someone gets my
Message in a bottle, yeah
Message in a bottle, yeah

A year has passed since I wrote my note
But I should have known this right from the start
Only hope can keep me together
Love can mend your life but
Love can break your heart
I'll send an s.o.s. to the world
I'll send an s.o.s. to the world
I hope that someone gets my
I hope that someone gets my
I hope that someone gets my
Message in a bottle, yeah
Message in a bottle, yeah
Message in a bottle, yeah
Message in a bottle, yeah

Walked out this morning, don't believe what I saw
Hundred billion bottles washed up on the shore
Seems I'm not alone at being alone
Hundred billion castaways, looking for a home
I'll send an s.o.s. to the world
I'll send an s.o.s. to the world
I hope that someone gets my
I hope that someone gets my
I hope that someone gets my
Message in a bottle, yeah
Message in a bottle, yeah
Message in a bottle, yeah
Message in a bottle, yeah
Sending out at an s.o.s.
Sending out at an s.o.s.
Sending out at an s.o.s.
Sending out at an s.o.s.
Sending out at an s.o.s.
Sending out at an s.o.s...


The single was The Police's first number one hit in the United Kingdom, but only reached #74 in the United States. An alternate "Classic Rock" mix is available on Every Breath You Take: The Singles. Stewart Copeland's drum performance in the song was ranked the 59th greatest studio rock drum performance of all time on digitaldreamdoor.com's 100 Greatest Studio Rock Drummer Performances list.

The Police reformed at Live Earth, a 2007 charity concert to raise awareness of environmental hazards and performed "Message in a Bottle" as the US finale, with John Mayer playing guitar with Andy Summers (who described the track as a personal favourite in his book One Train Later) and Kanye West performing a rap verse over the chorus of the song.

Sting performed "Message in a Bottle" with No Doubt during the halftime show at Super Bowl XXXVII.

It is a song about a lonely castaway on an island who sends out a message in a bottle to seek help. A year later, he feels that there is no need for love. Later on, he sees "a hundred billion bottles" on the shore, finding out that there are more people like him out there.


First ever live performance




The song may also be read as a lament of isolation and loneliness caused by the loss of a loved one ("love can break your heart"): he seeks help but gets no reply, then realizes that there are many more people out there like him, suggesting that everyone has to deal with loss and loneliness as part of the human experience. The island and the bottle are metaphors; by reaching out, the protagonist discovers he is not alone, and that other people share his feelings of alienation. It reminds me of the movie which shares the same name.



Look for an upcoming entry on this movie on my blog "Babyboomer Flashback"

As a widow attempting to join the real world again, I can definitely relate to this song. In the early days of my coming back to life after grief, I felt like that castaway on a deserted island. My message in a bottle came in the form of expressing my feelings on a daily basis in a personal blog that I started on Yahoo 360. While I thought I was alone in my loneliness and writing about it was a great release for me, I started receiving messages and comments from people all over the world.

Many could relate to the emotions I was experiencing, others had lost someone significant in their life and they could relate to the grief . . . then there were those who experienced loneliness and depression. Little by little it became more of a congregation of those who could relate to different things I was going through . . . and those people made friends with the others.

The time that followed became my moments of discovery and for the first time in my life, I finally learned who I am and what I want out of life . . . at the same time helping others stumbling through life trying to find their way . . . and we support each other through the good times and bad. The internet and blogging has made the world a smaller place where your message in a bottle brings faster results that the year that the castaway encountered.

One of my favorite songs of all time now has new meaning . . .






3 comments:

Erica said...

I found your site and am really enjoying reading your music memories. I especially love how you include the lyrics so that my memory is jogged even more! You should post some of these at jamsbio.com... It's a great community of people sharing music memories, and yours would probably get a huge response! Thanks for sharing...

Gina Alfani said...

Thank you so much Erica! I tried to access the website you suggested, but I got an error message. :( I'd love to check it out!

Erica said...

I'm sorry it didn't work! It works for me. Try this:

http://www.jamsbio.com/user/amiker77

That's my personal list of memories on there. From there, you should be able to create a profile of your own. Good luck!