What does It's All Been Done mean?

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Barenaked Ladies: It's All Been Done Meaning

Song Released: 1998


It's All Been Done Lyrics

I met you before the fall of rome
And I begged you to let me take you home

You were wrong, I was right
You said goodbye, I said goodnight

It’s all been done
It’s all been done
It’s all been done before

I knew you before the west was...

  1.  

    anonymous
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    Mar 31st, 2016 3:20pm report


    It is reincarnation:Two people who cross paths in various lives literally over centuries (from 'before the fall of Rome' through '30th century knight'). Each time they meet, they never quite connect. For example, the narrator asks 'to let me take you home' during the Roman period and is rejected. In the Wild West, they met but only briefly, the lover lamenting that 'the past was much more fun' (presumably the Roman period) and as they part they say 'you go your way, I'll go mine but I'll see you next time'. Finally, more than 1000 years later 'on a 30th century night', the lovers finally connect and the narrator laughs and cries from joy as they 'both run down the aisle'. Ultimately, their meeting in the 30th century was something that had 'all been done before' .



  2.  

    anonymous
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    Nov 21st, 2009 11:49pm report


    I once had a friend who interpreted it as the narrator knowing this person before significant events in their life. I've never sat down and truly analyzed this song as to which times these were, but it seems to hold true. I think the order was something like the loss of innocence, etc, with the last one being before marriage.
    Take what you will from this. It's probably not right but it always seemed like a decent enough idea.



  3.  

    anonymous
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    Apr 8th, 2008 4:08pm report


    It seems to me that the reincarnation thing is more of an allegory.

    This is about a relationship that seems to yoyo back and forth, they break up and subsequently get back together over and over again, they still have chemistry but it doesn't make them any less tired of each other. It ends with them separated. Both parties seem apathetic and unimpressed as it progresses, despite the potential heartbreak they could feel from this up-and-down relationship, they simply accept that they're not the first to do it and they seem more to frown down on how painfully cliche they're being.

    This song was written (according to Page) after he heard the song Brian Wilson on the radio and felt it was to wordy; he wanted to write something with "Woo Hoo Hoo" as its chorus.

    It's a cute, fun song which seems to understand that most Barenaked Ladies songs are gimmicky (seeming, this is not to say that there isn't a much deeper meaning or genius characterization, people just tend to miss those parts) in and of themselves, many can say "It's all been done" about BNL themselves. I think it may be a small commentary on the band itself by the band or at least on how they are perceived.



  4.  

    anonymous
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    Jul 6th, 2007 7:14pm report


    This song is about reincarnation, and meeting one person over and over again




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