What does Adam's Song mean?

Blink-182: Adam's Song Meaning

Album cover for Adam's Song album cover

Song Released: 2000

Adam's Song Lyrics

I never thought I'd die alone
I laughed the loudest who'd have known
I traced the cord back to the wall
No wonder it was never plugged in at all
I took my time, I hurried up
The choice was mine, I didn't think enough
I'm too...


    #1 top rated interpretation:
    click a star to vote
    Jul 16th 2005 !⃝

    Guitarist Tom Delonge: "The story behind that is Mark read a letter someone sent him as an email, that a kid wrote before he committed suicide to his parents. We kind of got together and wrote this sad, slow song. It came out sadder than we ever thought it would, which is good too. Any song that moves you is good. Some people listen to it and go 'Wow, that's a real bum-out of a song.' But it's one of those things, a story of a kid not being happy in his life, crossed with us being really lonely on tour. At the end of it there's a better way out, there are better things to do than kill yourself."

    The lyrics, "I traced the cord back to the wall, no wonder it was never plugged in at all" were inspired when guitarist Tom Delonge was playing in his garage and he and his amp were in a puddle. Luckily, the amp was not plugged in or he could have been electrocuted.

    The line "I took my time, I hurried up, the choice was mine, I didn't think enough" refers to the 1991 Nirvana's song "Come As You Are." There, the line is, "Take your time, hurry up, the choice is yours, don't be late."


    #2 top rated interpretation:
    click a star to vote
    Dec 23rd 2007 !⃝

    It's about a kids suicide!
    Heres the actual note
    To the man and woman who chose to conceive a child, the result of which was me, when it fit in with their five year plan;

    To the teachers who never really cared, no matter what they say;

    To my fellow geeks, dweebs, et. al., who will no doubt receive more abuse upon my passing, as my tormentors will no longer have me to kick around;

    To my fellow students who made my life a living nightmare when they should have focused on their education;

    To those who never cared, never spoke, probably never knew my name;
    To the one true friend, whose caring was the only thing that prevented this even from happening sooner;

    To the God, if he does exist, who chose to play a cruel, cruel joke on me when he placed me where he did and surrounded me with so many uncaring faces;

    To all of you, goodbye.

    I am leaving a world to which I never truly belonged or fit in. Do not weep for me, or mourn my passing. I say this not because I expect to be missed, but to allow those who truly did not care go on with their lives with a clean conscience and dry eyes. I know you don't want to weep for me. So don't. But I do ask you to listen to the final words of a young man who has taken charge of his own destiny.

    Perhaps my parents might feel something inside which causes them to shed tears. They may pretend that it's sorrow for their "loss", but I hope it is something else. Perhaps sorrow for bringing a child into this world when they really didn't have the time or desire to raise him. I wasn't the product of love, born of a desire to prepare another human being to grow and lead the human race. I was merely the next acquisition, the next task, the next project on their list of things that bring significance.

    No child should be brought into this world for the mere purpose of being just another possession. I am not an asset to be cataloged and listed on your tax forms beside your house and car, or fought over during your divorce proceedings. I am a human being. I'm sorry that it took this to make you realize that. If you don't yet get it, then I'm even sorrier.

    What about my teachers? Will they be sorry to see another student become a statistic? Certainly the administration and Principal Chowning will mourn, as my death will not reflect well on them as an institution. Well, I apologize for making the statistics for your administration worse. But I don't expect an apology for the false sympathies of people like Mrs. Dunfee, and the broken promises of others like Mr. Richman.

    As for my fellows students, those who made a more significant impact on my life, I know better than to expect my tormentors to mourn.

    But if I’m going to address those who belittled me, I’d be remiss if I failed to include the ladies in my life. I guess that’s not entirely accurate, as the ones I refer to fall in two basic categories: those who refused to be in my life, and those who I would rather have excluded from my life. In the former category, Melinda Tunney, Jessica Silvers, and dear Kimmy Vanover, whose laughed in my face after I asked her to the homecoming dance, humiliating me in front of I don’t know how many other classmates. In the latter category are too many to mention, though I must single out Rebecca Cull and Vanessa Dietrich for their tremendous dedication to the cause of destroying any shred of self-esteem I might dare to foster. Why can’t you accept the things that make other people different rather than insisting everyone conforms to your will?

    Sure, some did offer friendly gestures. Nicole Edwards often would greet me and ask about my life. Not that I ever felt comfortable enough to tell her anything; I never trusted her enough to give her the chance. What was the purpose? Did you really give a flip about the shy, quiet kid who sat behind you in 8th grade history? Or was it all about creating an illusion that you care, just to guarantee my voting for you as a class officer.

    I can only conceive of one person in this world who will truly be sad at my parting. Marty, my best friend, you talked me out of this decision three times before. You even called 911 after I swallowed a bottle of pills. That is why I did not tell you anything this time, and why I do this in secret, alone. I wish you were coming with me on this great adventure, into the final frontier. Where ever I go, yours will be the one face I carry with me. The one soul I will miss. Yours is also the only forgiveness I ask and beg for as I depart from this life. I love you, and always will.

    There’s another group I have not yet addressed: those not like me who left me alone. Or I should say ignored me. I appreciate your sparing me any further harassment, but your inaction, your withheld hellos and how are yous did more to hurt than any name calling. Your inaction effectively excluded me from student life, from the human race. You left me isolated and alone, and no words I could say can convey to you the suffering you caused. I could name names, but in doing so, I would do more now for you than you ever did for me in life.

    I do not know if what awaits me at the end of this gun. Will there be a void? Or will I come face to face with God? I just don't care any more. If you're anything like your people, I wouldn't want to know you. You preached to love one another, yet I've felt everything except love from Christians. Even if I could know you were different, well, I still reject you. You have left your "followers" to treat people like me poorly. You have allowed so many of the people you "love", including me, to suffer. So you want me to trust you with my life? I don’t want to spend eternity with a careless deity like you, or with the company you keep.

    As my final moments tick away, I wonder what impact these words will create. It depends first on this web site being found, as I doubt whether school administration will want such venom spoken publicly about their lack of caring. Still, the Internet is a remarkable place where even the least significant individual can be heard. Will anyone listen? Will anyone take action? Will students pause and pay attention to the hurting hearts around them? And even if they do, will it be a temporary salve for their egos, to convince themselves they’re really not bad people… or will real change happen?

    My heart certainly goes out to my fellow outsiders. With me gone, some of you will certainly feel more of the pain and hurt that I did. No one understands you. No one cares how your day is going. No one bothers to get to know you as anything more than a nerd, a geek, a loser. You can do nothing for their social status, save the occasional boost to the ego they get from putting you in your place. Some of you, like Andy Riker, will find outlets in writing. Some, like James Moon, will have an escape in art. Some, like Sean Gilbert, will live their lives pursuing unicorns that they will never, ever catch. I never had a talent to lose myself in, or a dream or unicorn to chase, and so I have taken the path most dreaded. Some of you may soon join me, and I look forward to welcoming a brother or sister to the land where you will never suffer the loneliness and rejection that faces you now.

    Farewell forever. I am going to another place. Where, I do not know. But logic dictates that it can only be an improvement. Perhaps my passing will only prove a footnote in a school yearbook. Then again, perhaps the sacrifice of one might bring hope to others. If my death makes life for one person a little more bearable, or a little more enlightened, do I really die in vain?

    "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one."

    - Adam Krieger


    #3 top rated interpretation:
    click a star to vote
    Apr 13th 2012 !⃝

    "I never thought I'd die alone
    I laughed the loudest who'd have known?
    I trace the cord back to the wall
    No wonder it was never plugged in at all
    I took my time, I hurried up
    The choice was mine I didn't think enough
    I'm too depressed to go on
    You'll be sorry when I'm gone"
    >Okay from this we can establish he is going to commit suicide and he addresses someone (perhaps someone who ignored him or a bully) when he says "You'll be sorry when I'm gone".

    "I never conquered, rarely came
    Sixteen just held such better days
    Days when I still felt alive
    We couldn't wait to get outside
    The world was wide, too late to try
    The tour was over, we'd survived
    I couldn't wait till I got home
    To pass the time in my room alone"
    >He is explaining why he committing suicide, he "never conquered, rarely came" meaning he never achieved or done much, he rarely ever even turned up and started something. He used to enjoy himself ("days when I still felt alive") but he thinks he won't be happy again. ("too late to try") and all wants to spend all his time in his room alone because he is depressed by that is no quality of life.

    "I never thought I'd die alone
    Another six months I'll be unknown
    Give all my things to all my friends
    You'll never step foot in my room again
    You'll close it off, board it up
    Remember the time that I spilled the cup
    Of apple juice in the hall
    Please tell mom this is not her fault"
    >He thinks about what will happen after his death. How is family will react (giving his stuff away and boarding up his room)- he doesn't want his mom to blame herself. He thinks everyone will forget him ("another six months I'll be alone") and he thinks of reminders people have of him - like the apple juice stain.

    I never conquered, when you came
    Sixteen just held such better days
    Days when I still felt alive
    We couldn't wait to get outside
    The world was wide, too late to try
    The tour was over, we'd survived
    I couldn't wait till I got home
    To pass the time in my room alone
    >Explaining why he wants to comity suicide again.

    "I never conquered, when you came
    Tomorrow holds such better days
    Days when I can still feel alive
    When I can't wait to get outside
    The world is wide, the time goes by
    The tour is over, I've survived
    I can't wait till I get home"
    >Theres a change here, he thinks that there is a future ("tomorrow holds such better days"). He thinks times will change again ("the world is wide, the time goes by." And now he isn't going to commit suicide, he's going to go back to his room and pass the time alone because that's what he wants to do for now - people don't just immediately bounce back from depression but he is going to wait for when he is happy again.

  4. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Oct 11th 2015 !⃝

    The line "I traced the cord back to the wall, no wonder it was never plugged in at all" (or whatever it says) was indeed inspired by the guitarist's plight in the water with the guitar.

    However, I think it also refers to thhe singer's life as a whole, because he's sort of wondering why everything went bad, and he realized that it has always been that way. He was never plugged in at all.

  5. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Sep 17th 2014 !⃝

    This song has a hook, both in music and in the words. I do not care how it was inspired but that it has impacted many people to step back from the edge and discover that it can get better. Volunteer at a kids burn clinic, soup kitchen for homeless people or care for people in a hospice dying of AIDS. Do that for thirty days and I would bet you would feel different about that reflection in the mirror.

  6. TheDudeAbides
    click a star to vote
    Aug 31st 2014 !⃝

    With six simple words, “I never thought I’d die alone”, any listener is immediately grasped in by the pain in Mark Hoppus’ voice, a very unusual pain. Before listening to Adam’s Song, one would rightfully dismiss this song as another teen angst, punk rock anthem seeing it’s performed by Blink-182. Up to release of Adam’s Song, Blink-182 had crafted a persona of being immature yet loveable losers who’s own band slogan to this day is “Crappy Punk Rock since 1992.” A band who released a song entitled “Dick Lips” and yet here they are addressing the taboo of suicide through punk rock.

    The next line solidifies the true meaning of this unusual Blink-182 song, “I laughed the loudest who’d have known?” Indeed, who would have known that the self-deprecating rock star would be filled with dark demons? “I’m too depressed to go on, you’ll be sorry when I’m gone” are words spoken with an ache a yearning, for human connection accompanied is somewhat guitar riff with background instruments, upbeat yet sad, when suddenly everything stops, as if the band is now missing a key member, followed by a brief and somber guitar riff.
    The pain just deepens as Hoppus reminisces of days when his life was good, when he felt important, “16 just held such better days”, as the song begins to get upbeat more, Hoppus is seemingly growing from his depression, but in a twist of events, he sarcastically says “I couldn’t wait till I got home, to pass the time in my room alone.” What begins to set Adam’s Song apart from other suicide anthems is the obscurity of whom he is talking to. It comes across as though he’s telling a story, a testimony of his dark demons, and a way he deeply connects with the listener is uncanny.
    Maybe that’s who Hoppus is talking to---the listener. Maybe Hoppus knew, or knows, that whoever listens to this song has at least some depression hidden beneath them. While depression and suicide songs come more across as testimonies, Adam’s Song tries to tell the story of the listener’s struggle with depression by connecting with the listener on common feelings of love lost and fading into social obscurity through using his own experiences as well. Looking back, it all begins to make sense “16 just held such better days…” maybe Hoppus, or whoever’s story he’s telling, was happier in high school, perhaps one who peaked in high school socially, and fell into obscurity sense, the lyrics are filled with isolation and alienation which just solidifies his loneliness. Or perhaps it’s just the testimony of a tortured soul
    As the song progresses, Hoppus begin to speak to his parents, “Give all my things to all my friends, you’ll never step foot in my room again, you’ll close it off, board it up…” Hoppus angrily demands that if his parents will forget him, they might as well see to it that Hoppus leaves nothing behind but the emptiness he felt. Hoppus instantly tries to make better from his previous statement as he tries to leave his parents, specifically his mom, out of this by saying “Please tell mom this is not her fault” accompanied by another drop of all instruments except for Hoppus’ guitar playing the somber riff, as if to symbolize him leaving Tom DeLonge and Travis Barker, his bandmates.

    Suddenly after a repeated chorus, something about Adam’s Song is felt that wasn’t felt before, a happiness. Adam’s Song is a dark melody stricken with the reality of sadness and pain , but now the chorus re-emerges from the ashes of depression and death into a sunlight, and it’s beautiful Hoppus and the listener. With the faster tempo and forte of the instruments, Adam’s Song takes an unprecedented turn and re-works the chorus, “I never conquered rarely came, tomorrow holds such better days, Holds. Tomorrow holds such better days. No longer held, but holds. The significance of that simple word change is neither insignificant by mistake, “Days when I can still feel alive, When I can’t wait to get outside The world is wide, the time goes by, the tour is over, I’ve survived, I can’t wait till I get home, to pass the time in my room alone.” Hoppus had his tour with depression, but he beat it, he’s survived, unlike most suicide anthems, Adam’s Song doesn’t end with a dark tone, perhaps Hoppus realized how much of a waste that would be, instead he proclaims how he’s alive, how depression doesn’t always win. Everything that made him sad, that nearly pushed him to suicide is now looked at as a blessing, Hoppus is acknowledging that life sucks, but it always gets better, there’s always light at the end of the dark tunnel, and longer and darker the tunnel is, the better the light feels when it’s reached.

  7. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Aug 22nd 2014 !⃝

    Blink said in an interview something along the lines of the the
    song is less of a song about suicide and more of a song about getting through depression, suicidal thoughts, and general bad things that happen in your life. it was never in any way meant to promote or glorify suicide, but instead to prove that there are other options besides suicide and that you can get through rough times, but only if you choose to try to get through it. only you can choose your own happiness. no one can tell you how to feel. I promise you, you will get better if you want to get better. if not, you most likely won't. only YOU can choose your own happiness.

  8. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Dec 12th 2012 !⃝

    "16 had such better days" this song could be addressing the fact that you realize you realy do have a phycological problem near or after the age or 16-17. The highlight of his life was high school because his life was so short. Some lines in the song reffer to the symptoms of mental illnesses and lonlyness/depression such as "cant wait to be alone".
    Perhaps he wanted to see where and when he contracted depression and mental illness or his head wasnt right when he says "i trased it back, no womder it was never plugged in at all" as if his brain wasnt right from birth. So he concluded suicide is the only option to cure his depression and stop his mental illness.
    -John Gilroy

  9. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Nov 19th 2012 !⃝

    This song is about suicide! if one of these dumbass people say that it isn't again i will be sooooooooooooo angry. didn't you read the comment labled 2. It has the actual suicide note he wrote. It is so sad and when u read it, I cried. Sowhy don't you use your eyes and read the lyrics. This song actually stopped me from killing myself.

  10. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Aug 8th 2012 !⃝

    Its from Mr Show's 3rd season. About a kid who is in love with a faux Metallica band called Titanica it tells him to commit suiscide uh in namesake at least.nr

  11. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Jul 9th 2012 !⃝

    This song, contrary to belief is not about a teen's suicide note. Mark came home from the tour in 97 or 98 and was feeling depressed. He wrote this song about his feelings at the time. He chose the name Adam from a character from the television show 'Mr.Show'. The teen letter myth is probably derived from the website adamsletter.com which talks about a teens suicide. It is just a coincidence between the two, however.

  12. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    May 30th 2012 !⃝

    "I never conquered, when you came Tomorrow holds such better days Days when I can still feel alive When I can't wait to get outside The world is wide, the time goes by" is saying it things will get better after he commits suicide.

  13. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    May 30th 2012 !⃝

    "I traced the cord back to the wall no wonder it was never plugged in at all" I read on a website that it was about the guitarist was standing in a puddle and if his guitar had been plugged in he would've gotten electricuted. But i think it means the guy is going to use the cord to strangle himself

  14. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Nov 25th 2011 !⃝

    As a person who has heavily struggled with depression, this song means a lot to me, and i know it must have been written by a person who also has been depressed, because the kind of pain this beautiful song fills me with, is so real. To all the people who have never been depressed and believe this song to be talking about how at the end it will get better, they're wrong. The line "please tell mom this is not her fault," makes it pretty clear everything doesn't end up like some Hollywood movie.

  15. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Nov 1st 2011 !⃝

    This song is based on a kid named Adam who committed suicide. The band did not know him personally, but they got his suicide letter.
    Thus, calling the song 'Adam's Song.'

  16. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Oct 19th 2011 !⃝

    it says "I took my time I hurried up" which I think links Adam's Song with Kurt Cobain as a tribute as the Nirvana lyrics for "Come As You Are" go "Take your time, Hurry up"

  17. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Sep 20th 2011 !⃝

    This song is not about Adam Krieger, whom is a ficticious character from a play that has similarities but no intended connections. This song is about suicide and depression at any age.

  18. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Jul 8th 2011 !⃝

    This Adam Krieger's letter, as heard in bits and pieces throughout the play, "Adam's Letter." When the website was originally posted, the front page was nothing but the letter, with a link at the bottom leading visitors into the main menu. I moved the letter from the main page after discovering that the letter had become an Internet urban legend. Visitors had somehow made a connection between Adam Krieger and the Adam of "Adam's Song," and anti-suicide song recorded by Blink 182.

    There is no connection between the song and the play. The naming of the play was a coincidence. And the letter printed here was not written by Adam Krieger, but by me. I am gratified that the letter has made an visitors, and I pray that it will continue to impact people with its message about bullying and suicide.

    You can find this at the website

    I am not saying this song is not about suicide, it clearly is! Duh.

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