Song Lyric Sunday: Listen

Often times, we fail to listen to what others have to say. We believe we know all there is about them simply by observing their actions and hearing their words. We generalise and label people as we see fit into a fixed set of categories. We hear what they have to say just so that we can label them as we see fit. We fail to truly listen and understand people as an individual. We fail to listen to what others have to say and what they are trying to convey.

We should really just learn to listen.

Listen to those voices of individuality.

Listen to those voices crying for help.

listen

This week’s song choice for Song Lyric Sunday is yet another Japanese song by amazarashi.

This video already has all the lyrics translated into English. However, if you want to view the lyrics as a whole, below is a different set of translated lyrics.

Namae (Name)

What was your name again?
Suddenly, I can’t seem to remember.
I’m sorry that I laughed at you so hard.
At a loss for words, it just came out.
Man cannot live without one another.
There’s no mistake about that.
You’re always a part of something bigger,
Whether your family, school, or society itself.
Your name’s written on your name tag.
Or maybe it’s written on your business card.
Or maybe it’s written on your medical records.
So many shadows whisper out to you.
They know you by titles, gossip, and nicknames.
To tell the truth, I really hate all of those.
How about we get to know each other first?
Then maybe we’ll understand each other.
Whether a liar, idealist, or dreamer;
If you have depression, whichever side you fall on;
All we’re doing is trying to live our lives.
The only thing that’s different is our names.
If you have social anxiety disorder,
Whether you like rock, pop, or folk songs;
Does any of it really matter?
If you would, won’t you listen to my story?
When I was in elementary school,
Everyone always liked to call me “Slick.”
I spent my time trying to read their faces,
And changing how I acted accordingly.
Of course, once I’d gotten into music,
They started calling me the “Bandman.”
And shortly after I graduated high school,
Everyone called me “Mr. Part-Time.”
Nothing’s really changed about me,
Since I was that little punk kid.
My name was the only thing that changed,
Based on the time, place, and circumstances.
So try not to get so down about it.
I understand what you are going through.
You asked me who the hell I was?
Tell me who the hell you are first!
Whether a debtor or a good-for-nothing bum,
If you’re unemployed and don’t want to live anymore,
All we’re doing is trying to live our lives.
The only thing that’s different is our names.
Whether insensitive, conservative, or liberal;
Whether a truant, middle school or high school graduate;
Does any of it really matter?
If you wouldn’t mind, could you tell me your story?
Every now and then I‘m made to carry some gaudy signboard.
Every now and then I‘m accused of some unspeakable offense.
How many names could tell your whole life’s story in a single word?
I bet you can’t think of very many, can you?
So tell me,
Now what sort of word should we know you as?
I think you should pick the word you like best.
What sort of name would you choose for yourself?
Reducing everything you’ve done to one word isn’t very elegant.
Whether a thug, victim, or culprit;
Whether a loser, bystander, or suspect;
All we’re doing is trying to live our lives.
The only thing that’s different is our names.
If you’re neurotic or a narcissistic criminal,
If you’re homeless or a day-laborer,
Does any of it really matter?
All anyone can do are the things they have to.
What was your name again?
Suddenly, I can’t seem to remember.
That reminds me, I never mentioned my name.
Now they call me the “Man with the Sharp Tongue.”
Translation from here.

Feel free to check out more songs by amazarashi on YouTube.

If you are interested in getting some of their CDs, head on over to CDJapan by simply clicking here.

For the specific album with this song, click here.

Leave your thoughts on the song in the comments below! 🙂

Song Lyric Sunday
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11 replies »

  1. Wonderful thoughts in those lyrics…exactly, we should listen before we start labeling others with no understanding.
    I like songs in other languages, but it’s helpful to have the English words, too. The Japanese language is interesting to me because we lived in Japan for a couple of years a long time ago.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Glad you found the lyrics meaningful 🙂
      I mainly listen to Japanese music and am really grateful whenever it has English subtitles. There are plenty of songs with amazing lyrics that I’ve come across while dwelling in J-pop… Sometimes I wish I knew Japanese so I could enjoy the beauty of the lyrics and the song at the same time without needing subtitles. ^^”

      That’s amazing! How long did you live in Japan for and how come it was just a short few years? If I’m prying too much it’s fine to not answer! 🙂

      Like

      • I only know a few basic words in Japanese, but I love the sound of someone speaking it.
        We were in Japan from 1979 to I think 1981. My husband was in the Army, and was stationed at Camp Zama. We lived on base in the city of Sagamihara just outside of Tokyo. Japan is such a beautiful country, and I found the people to be extremely welcoming and friendly. 🙂 Have you ever been there? If you haven’t, and get a chance, I’d highly recommend going.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Wow, that’s amazing! 🙂
        I really love the Japanese language as well, although I do not know how to read Japanese, I do know a little bit of spoken Japanese (extremely minimal) ^^”
        Indeed, the people in Japan are really welcoming and friendly ^^
        Yeap, I’ve had the pleasure of visiting Japan and am actually going again for a short 3 days this December! It’s a beautiful country with nice food and scenic places XD

        Liked by 1 person

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