“Lean On” by Major Lazer ft. DJ Snake & MØ

Major Lazer’s “Lean On” is centered on a romance that has apparently gone awry. Thus it begins with the singer, MØ, reminiscing on the past days of this relationship. And at that time she and her partner were “bold and young”.  The overall implication is that particular period of the romance was a very memorable one in a good way.

You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for DJ Snake's Lean On at Lyrics.org.

But by the second verse you can see that she is questioning the future of their union and her lover’s commitment to her. That is she wonders if he will remain by her side through serious hardship. And unlike the first pre-chorus, which as mentioned earlier had her relishing their past, this time around we see that she’s “longing for [him] to come home”. Also the following line, “all around the wind blows”, seems to signify that they have indeed run into formidable obstacles challenging their relationship. 

Indeed she concludes this particular section by stating “we would only hold on to let go”. And that statement very much reads as if they had in fact eventually broken up.

“Blow a Kiss, Fire a Gun”

Meanwhile the meaning of the most-outstanding line of the chorus, “blow a kiss, fire a gun”, has been a matter of debate if you will. It is followed by the statement upon which the title is derived from, “we need someone to lean on”.

Lyrics of "Lean On"

One on hand some have postulated these phrases symbolize the universal need for a support system. This is the understanding which MØ herself abides by. That is regardless of the setting, whether it be love or war, as Bill Withers would say “we all need somebody to lean on”. In fact Diplo went on to express that the ones he actually ‘leans on’, i.e. for inspiration, are his sons. So this song can in fact be interpreted in a number of interpersonal spheres, even by the artists themselves.

However considering that what is highlighted throughout is obviously a romantic relationship, the more-universal theory is that the first line of the chorus is representative of the polarizing nature of said association, as how one moment they may be at peace (“a kiss”) and the next war (“a gun”).  However, as the subsequent line suggests, they are still emotionally dependent on each other.


And it is along those lines that the song concludes. So calling this track a love song would be a stretch, as obviously the relationship highlighted therein meets an unfavorable end. Rather more to the point is the fact that, as stated by Major Lazer and co., “we need someone to lean on”. Or put differently, within the specific context of romance the fact that a couple may be at odds with each other does not minimize their dependency on one another.

Music Video

The music video to this song was also an international affair, being filmed in both Sweden but primarily in India. And in terms of the latter the visual is actually based on a Bollywood theme. The decision to set the video in India was due to a pleasurable experience Major Lazer had their in the past.

Said music video, which had Tim Erem of its director, can be considered one of the most-successful of all time. We say this because it has well surpassed in excess of two and-a-half billion views on YouTube as of 2019.

Primary Artists of “Lean On”

  • Major Lazer is a EDM trio that is both American and Jamaican in origin. And at the time “Lean On” was released, its membership consisted of Diplo, Walshy Fire and Jillionaire.
  • Meanwhile DJ Snake is from France and MØ Denmark.
  • Additionally there is an official remix of this track featuring American rapper Ty Dolla $ign.

Millions of Copies of “Lean On” sold Globally

This track is amongst the list of historical best sellers, having sold over 13-million copies. In fact it has been certified multi-Platinum in the following countries:

  • Australia
  • Belgium
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • New Zealand
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • United Kingdom
  • United States

Likewise it has topped music charts in over 20 countries, including the UK and US. And whereas it did not actually reach the summit in UK’s Singles Charts or the Billboard Hot 100, it did respectively peak at number 2 and number 4 on those lists.

“Lean On” also briefly held the record of being the most-streamed song ever on the popular digital-music service Spotify.

Who wrote “Lean On”?

“Lean On” was written by Diplo, DJ Snake, MØ and Jr. Blender.  In fact it was the latter artist that actually originated the tune.

Nicki Minaj and Rihanna refused recording this Track

The track was initially offered, albeit at a slower tempo, to vocalists Rihanna and Nicki Minaj. They both turned down the offer. However, Diplo feels that such was “a blessing in disguise” as MØ ultimately proved, in his eyes, to be a better choice.

Moreover it was DJ Snake who reportedly sped up the pace of the song.

Release Date of “Lean On”

“Lean On” is featured on Major Lazer’s album “Peace Is the Mission” and in fact serves as the lead single from that project, which was published by Diplo’s own label, Mad Decent. The track was officially released on 17 February 2015.

Prior to “Lean On” had MØ  worked with Major Lazer before?

Although MØ began collaborating with Diplo himself back in 2013, “Lean On” marked her first collaboration with Major Lazer in its entirety. And she has released a few more songs alongside the band since then.

The same goes for DJ Snake, with this being the first time he teamed up with Major Lazer proper. However, he did remix their track “Bubble Butt” back in 2013.

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