What does Only the Good Die Young mean?

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Billy Joel: Only the Good Die Young Meaning

Song Released: 1977

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Only the Good Die Young Lyrics

Come out Virginia, don't let me wait
You Catholic girls start much too late
Aw But sooner or later it comes down to fate
I might as well be the one

Well, They showed you a statue, told you to pray
They built you a temple and locked you...


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    Mar 24th, 2015 3:43pm report

    I think that this song is about a catholic nun (Virginia) and a boy who is bound and determined to change her. I think she is a nun because of the lines "they built you a temple and locked you away" however. I think that if you need to know the true meaning, find out where he lives and write billy joel a letter.


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    Apr 13th, 2013 4:49pm report

    This song is about a teenage boy who wants a very religious girls to come away from her religion and live her life free and fun and not be held back by her overprotective mother (Your mother said all I could give you was a reputation. Your mother never cared for me, but did she ever say a prayer for me?)


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    Sep 10th, 2012 9:57am report


    A lesbian or bi (or another form of homosexuality) girl somehow finds out that a sweet well behaved VERY Catholic girl she knows (Virginia) is also Lesbian/Bi/Other and is very happy about that because Virginia is very beautiful and has an amazing personality. She wants her crush to come out of the closet so they can be together but Virginia feels conflicted about her sexuality because of her religion. She doesn't know what to do and is obviously distressed so the first girl sings her this song to convince her that SOMETIMES it's okay to follow her heart, no matter what the bible says.


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    Aug 15th, 2012 8:36am report

    It means that if you haven't lived your life fast paced and done some crazy things, then you haven't lived life to its fullest. Dying young in this notation would imply not dying young of age, but young in experience. Young is used as a metaphor. It is to say, in essence, that if you live safely and don't get around you won't know what life is about.


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    Mar 22nd, 2012 3:39pm report

    I think that the song is about a boy trying to get a catholic girl to sleep with him and the reason he keeps saying "only the good die young" is because he is trying to convince her that if she sleeps with him and breaks away from the Catholic church that she would be "bad" and that good people are usually the first to die so she should stop being good and live her life.


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    May 20th, 2011 5:36am report

    The Song is a short story about a teenage boy who tries to convince a teenage Catholic girl to have sex with him and how the church is stopping her from enjoying life.

    The best example of this is the lines,

    You Catholic girls start much too late,
    but sooner or later it comes down to fate,
    I might as well be the one.

    Some people also believe that the church is disgorging the girl from seeing the boy by making out he is a bad person,

    “You might have heard I run with a dangerous crowd,
    We ain't too pretty we ain't too proud,
    We might be laughing a bit too loud,
    But that never hurt no one”

    And also her own mother is stopping her seeing the boy.

    "well your mother told you all that I could give you was a reputation,
    Aww She never cared for me,
    But did she ever say a prayer for me?"

    Although there is never any hint at the religion of the boy, it is implied that he doesn’t like the Catholic faith as he refers to the Catholic faith with words like ‘you’ and ‘they’.

    Most people believe that the girl’s name, Virginia, is a play on the word ‘Virgin.
    Of course at the end of the song the boy gets nowhere and the girl still keeps her chastity (virginity)

    Fact:- The Song was banned from the radio at the time for being anti Catholic.

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