Five Finger Death Punch’s “Blue on Black” Lyrics Meaning

The analogy upon which this song is based, according to its original renderer, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, is that if you mix the colors blue and black together, at the end of day the “black consumes the blue”. 

Or put differently this is a case where the mixing of two elements ultimately leads to only one being left standing. And that’s the gist of it as far as the official explanation goes. 

Outside of that, it’s up to “the listener (to) apply their own experience in whatever way seems fit”. Indeed, Shepherd further elaborated that it is “one of those [types] of songs”. So there you go.

But that being noted, it’s pretty obvious that the idea that is being relayed is put into the context of a relationship. More specifically we can postulate that it is a romantic relationship, considering that terminology like the singer lamenting when “alone” at night and the fact that the addressee ‘slipped right through his hand’ is usually reserved for such scenarios. 

But more to the general point, considering that Shepherd never classified this song on any particular state of affairs, would be the fact that the association between the singer and the addressee has verily been ruined.

Indeed from the onset due to his loneliness, the singer also finds himself in some kind of anxious state. The second verse implies that the breakup, if you will, was caused by some fault of his own, i.e. being deceitful to the addressee. 

But whatever has transpired, it is a “wrong [that] can’t be undone”. And this is apparently an impression he got from the way in which they parted ways, i.e. what the addressee said when this person left him.

Thesis Sentiment of “Blue on Black”

And considering the above-mentioned analogy upon which this song is based, that apparently would be the thesis sentiment. In other words, this song isn’t so much about the singer lamenting a dead or messed up relationship, as most people have interpreted it. 

Rather it is the fact that what has been done, i.e. the rift between him and the addressee, cannot be undone.

Or another, perhaps simpler way of looking at it is like this. The “blue” is symbolic of his love for the addressee, and the “black” is representative of all the mistakes he has made in the relationship. 

And as noted earlier, when mixed together the black overpowers the blue. Or at least, allegorical speaking, that’s what appears to be going down. 

Is the singer heartbroken? Yes. But even beyond that, the chorus is filled with metaphors letting the listener know that this relationship is “dead” for real.

Lyrics of "Blue on Black"

Facts about “Blue on Black”

This is a song that was originally released by the Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band in 1998. In fact it was written by Kenny Wayne Shepherd along with Mark Selby (1961-2017) and Mark’s wife, another musician by the name of Tia Sillers.

Five Finger Death Punch’s version came out on 18 May 2018 as part of their album “And Justice for None” (2018). 

And in 2019, labels Prospect Park Records and Eleven Seven Music also issued it as the fourth and final single from the project.

Their cover appeared on Billboard’s Hot Rock Songs chart, peaking at number 11 in 2019. Well actually, that particular version was a second cover by Five Finger Death Punch. Said version saw them collaborate with the following musicians:

  • Kenny Wayne Shepherd
  • A country singer by the name of Brantley Gilbert
  • Brian May from the legendary British rock band, Queen 

And the artists involved decided to donate proceeds from the track to an organization called Gary Sinise Foundation. This organization primarily caters to wounded veterans. However, the foundation used the proceeds to support ‘First Responders’.

More about Five Finger Death Punch’s Cover

The reason Five Finger Death Punch decided to cover this tune is because it is a personal favorite of the band’s frontman, Ivan Moody. For instance, even prior to releasing “Blue on Black”, bandmate Zoltan Bathory has explained that the group had covered it live multiple times. He further revealed that it is was one of their favorite songs to perform live.

The other band members, besides vocalist Moody and rhythm guitarist Bathory, who participated on this project are:

  • Jason Hook (lead guitar)
  • Chris Kael (bass)
  • Jeremy Spencer (drums) 

Hook and Kael also provided backup vocals to the tune.

Dale Resteghini directed the music video to this song, with inspiration provided by Zoltan Bathory.

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