JOHNNY by BROCKHAMPTON Lyrics Meaning – Unraveling the Psyche of a Collective


You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for BROCKHAMPTON's JOHNNY at Lyrics.org.
Article Contents:
  1. Music Video
  2. Lyrics
  3. Song Meaning

Lyrics

When I imagine myself on acid
I take step backwards and find those to lap itself
Even dance a pound around my silent thoughts who had the crown
Don’t-don’t-don’t-don’t let life pass yourself
When I imagine myself on acid
I take step backwards and find those to lap itself
Even dance a pound around my silent thoughts who had the crown
Don’t-don’t-don’t-don’t let life pass yourself

I could’ve got a job at McDonald’s, but I like curly fries
That’s a metaphor for my life, and I like taller guys
Could’ve got a deal if I wanted, but I like owning shit
And I like making shit, and I like selling it

Could’ve peaked when I was in high school but I had bigger plans
Could’ve took the time out to find you but you ain’t understand
You gotta leave for them to define you
‘Cause what would you demand?
When everybody out to define you without a circumstance

Anybody got Harry Styles’ phone number?
Okay, I called him and they said I got the wrong number
I was trying to be Pac when I was younger, dreaming of better days
I don’t see my mom no more remind me of bad weather days

If you got a problem with me, try some other guy
I let you know I’m a dog, I ate the cat alive
But really though, I’m alone ’cause I don’t stick around
And yes, I know it’s my fault, so put your finger down

I would keep this shit pent up if it weren’t for my mom
If it weren’t for Dijon yeah I don’t like to lie
Guess it sounds out the month
Should’ve opened up my mouth more, show ’em what my fist for
Let ’em get a fistful, caught up in the lust, man
Bred from the legs of straight killers on best end
Black eyes, bloody sheets, damn, where yo’ feet stand?
We should get a new plan, maybe some more fans

I love it when the people go wild for me
I love it when the people go wild for me
I love it when the people go wild for me
Keep it wild for me, wild, wild for me
I love it when the people go wild for me
I love it when the people go wild for me
I love it when the people go wild for me
Keep it wild for me, wild, wild for me

Baby, I been trippin’ off ’em, tie me up and send ’em off
And I been on mission for it, I just want my own apartment
I just want a space with my old best friend
Lock me in your cellular, won’t elevate again
Baby, I been trippin’ off ’em, tie me up and send ’em off
I been on mission for it, I just want my own apartment
I just want a space with my old best friend
Lock me in your cellular, won’t elevate again

I’m a shithead son
And I’m bad at growing up
I’m a shithead son
And I’m bad at growing up
My life ain’t been the same, since my dog died, since my girl left
I quit drinking and drugging and still can’t get ahead
Been at a loss for words
It seems I’m destined to fall apart when I’m depressed
It’s all a test, scream at God from my bedside
I glue my hands together, life’s got me hog-tied
There’s no applause in the game of life, I just bought a car
And a new house, here’s the cost to prove it
I spin a little wheel when I’m feelin’ moody
And that’s like all the time, try not to mind the clock
Because my heart is ticking, I smoke a pack a day
And I wish I didn’t, having some trouble quittin’
I have a couple vices, we had that show on Viceland
I was hardly in it, most the time I’m hidden
Anxious, impatient and always wanting something different
I hate the way I’m feeling, I’m sick of chasing feelings

Baby, I been trippin’ off ’em, tie me up and send ’em off
And I been on a mission for it, I just want my own apartment
I just want a space with my old best friend
Lock me in your cellular, won’t elevate again
Baby, I been trippin’ off ’em, tie me up and send ’em off
I been on a mission for it, I just want my own apartment
I just want a space with my old best friend
Lock me in your cellular, won’t elevate again

Full Lyrics

JOHNNY isn’t just another track from BROCKHAMPTON’s repertoire; it’s a labyrinthine reflection of the group’s internal odyssey, ripe with vivid metaphors and raw disclosures. The group, known for its unabashed transparency and beautifully chaotic synergy, uses this track from the ‘SATURATION III’ album to confront the complexities of growth, fame, and personal demons.

The song is laced with the members’ contrasting experiences and shared heartaches, hitting remarkable depths of vulnerability. It’s a calcified heartbeat of the oft-misunderstood creators, pulsing with layered emotions and piercing raps that dismantle the facade of a glorified hip-hop lifestyle.

Acid Dreams and the Fickle Grip of Reality

In JOHNNY, the opening lines thrust listeners into a psychedelic daydream, where the bounds of reality are distorted. The repeated image of acid not only represents an escape from mundanity but also a desire to alter perceptions and break free from the constrictions of societal norms.

The operative sentiment here isn’t glorification of drug use but rather an exploration of the members’ longing for liberation from their own minds. The crown of ‘silent thoughts’ suggests an inward battle for self-control and sovereignty over their own narratives.

The Intoxicating Whirl of Success and Self-reliance

The hook ‘I could’ve got a job at McDonald’s, but I like curly fries’ further underscores BROCKHAMPTON’s penchant for autonomy. The seemingly playful lyric masks a profound aversion to conformity and a drive to create something distinctive on their own terms — a life choice that’s as twisted and unexpected as curly fries.

Indeed, the members’ deliberate avoidance of peaking in high school or getting a deal illuminates their commitment to carving a unique path. It’s not about reaching societal checkpoints but defining success on their own timeline, with their own metrics.

A Brush with Stardom and the Quest for Fulfillment

References to Harry Styles and Tupac Shakur epitomize the juxtaposition of idolatry versus identity. BROCKHAMPTON acknowledges the influence of stars but also wrestles with maintaining individuality amid the pressure to emulate legendary figures.

The aspiration to remain original while recognizing one’s forebearers in artistry is palpable. As the members navigate the shadows cast by titans, they express a deep-seated yearning for a connection that’s not governed by fame — a simple space with an old best friend.

Domestic Anecdotes and a Dance With Shadows

The disarmingly candid lines ‘I’m a shithead son, and I’m bad at growing up’ reveal a haunting admission of perceived personal shortcomings. The song’s confessional nature becomes a dark waltz with themes of loss, addiction, and self-sabotage.

In these verses, BROCKHAMPTON bares the true cost of coping mechanisms that range from substance abuse to the addictive nature of performance, symbolizing an enduring struggle for inner peace amidst the bravado-ridden landscape of hip-hop culture.

The Hidden Depths of ‘JOHNNY’: A Cathartic Release

One cannot delve into ‘JOHNNY’ without feeling the thrust of its stinging narrative — a collective’s catharsis that strives to resonate with others shackled by similar tribulations. The song forges a bond through shared pain and communal healing, rooting for authenticity in a space where vulnerability is often masked by braggadocio.

BROCKHAMPTON’s ‘JOHNNY’ is a microcosm of the human condition, a symphonic diary of dreams, fears, and the raw pursuit of a place in the world. In narrating their potent story, they empower others to embrace their own complexities, rendering ‘JOHNNY’ an anthem for the realist and the dreamer alike.

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