What does People Are Strange mean?

The Doors: People Are Strange Meaning

Album cover for People Are Strange album cover

Song Released: 1967

People Are Strange Lyrics

People are strange when you’re a stranger
Faces look ugly when you’re alone
Women seem wicked when you’re unwanted
Streets are uneven when you’re down
When you’re strange
Faces come out of the rain
When you’re strange
No one remembers your...


    #1 top rated interpretation:
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    Nov 14th 2006 !⃝

    Actually, the song was thought up when jim was suicidal and his friends tried to calm him down. He went to calm his nerves by taking a walk. Walking around contemplating everything he sees people going about their daily life that he doesn't know, and they don't know him. "faces seem ugly, when your alone."he was around a lot of people, but he was by himself and didn't care about the 'ugly faces' around him. "people are strange, when your a stranger" means that two people are complete strangers and you know nothing of them so they appear strange to you.

    Genearlly it's a song he wrote when he was depressed.


    #2 top rated interpretation:
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    Jul 22nd 2007 !⃝

    One word DEPRESSION. The feeling of the whole world is against you and feeling alone and no one understands how you/he feels. I also believe it shows some of Jim's paranoia. A lot of gifted people like Jim have a lot of emotional problems.


    #3 top rated interpretation:
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    Feb 24th 2010 !⃝

    Dude, although Morrison was well-known for ingesting several different types of hallucinogens and this song may seem as if it were ALL about drugs but, in my opinion, the song was written moreso on depression as a few others wrote. I've heard, yes only hear-say, that Morrison wrote this song/poem while contemplating suicide by jumping off a bridge or something. It is also known (from the NO ONE HERE GETS ALIVE book) that Jim ate LSD (and probably other drugs which some were probably psychedelics)on a rooftop where he was living on someone's (I forget who) roof top nearly everyday of the week- literally. Also, remember at this time LSD was legal. It is also proven that some hallucinogens may cause depression and bipolar symptoms. This may have lead him to write this song. However, it is very unintelligent to say "ooo man he musta been trippin his balls off when he wrote that song!! Seein faces in the rain dude! holy shit man!! I WANT SUMMA DAT SHIT!" Simply, NO! What I think, and obviously have no proof, but I think what he meant by "faces come out of the rain" is that people/himself are sad and rain usually is relative to sadness (example: "I've had a bad day... It feels like I have a RAIN cloud over my head." Next, "Woman seem wicked" MAY have been about Pam Courson (his long-term girlfriend, or fuck friend- whatever lol)or another girl that mad him write this song saying woman ALWAYS seem wicked when I'm sad. "no one remembers your name" may refer to feeling depressed. I for one suffer from mild depression and if someone forgets my name or forgets to say hello or whatever, I feel depressed- or STRANGE. Therefore, "When your strange...." may also mean When your sad or depressed. Also I agree with whoever wrote the thing about him being around a lot of people and then being alone- "Faces look ugly when you're alone." Of course, I'm NOT ***NOT*** Jim Morrison therefore I can only give my own interpretation. I believe that any and every song has meaning to it but the listener should interpret the song HOWEVER THEY WANT OR THINK IT SHOULD BE INTERPRETED AS. You don't need to go on this site to find the meaning of a song but you should go on this site to view different opinions of the song. Maybe even meet a cool cat or somthin to chit chat online (and online only lol... fuckin paedophiles out there seriously man.)to discuss the song or other songs from different bands or songs. Hope I said something right dude... but Im sure someone out there will comment me and say "fuck you dilster! you're a cock bitch. I hope you get a new puppy, and you love that puppy! And then I hope that puppy, in which you've named Lucky, dies in your arms!! SO FUCK YOU DYLAN!!!" lol hope they don't take it to that level...

    -Dylan Stumbaugh -----
    (repin Cumberland, MD motha truckas! wasssssupp!!!)

  4. anonymous
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    May 30th 2023 !⃝

    I guess that to some degree the song itself is kind of open to interpretation because the lyrics kind of point it out, being an outcast does give you a different perspective about people either individually or in groups, feeling left out, unimportant or rejected might have you looking at people in a negative way, that much is in the first lines, but either having to deal with people as a stranger might catch you by surprise regardless of their intentions or "faces come out of the rain" to me could also mean that when you're isolated, depressed, or just an outsider brings the attention of other people who could be in the same situation, or specifically looking for you, for the latter my advice would be to pay attention since just like you could be simply be earning the company of a like minded individual or group of people, you may just find out the wrong way why some people are labeled as outcasts.

  5. anonymous
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    May 23rd 2021 !⃝

    The story is that he was depressed. It sounds about right - I think some men experience depression this way. You're extremely alienated, and people look "ugly" and you have a doomy mood. "Women seem wicked" because you just can't connect, and some guys turn rejection into attacking back, thinking "she is a wicked woman" for being more into guys who aren't depressed. Instead of thinking, "I'm such a drag on myself, and everyone right now - just give lust and desire a rest", you blame the other person. "People are strange" because they will treat you a bit strange, because you're acting depressed, and not bouncing back from sad situations. It's *hard* to deal with depressed people, especially if you aren't used to their specific type of depression. "Faces come out of the rain" is great imagery, and captures the feeling of people approaching you when you're really stuck in your own head -- all of a sudden, they're almost "in your face", and you have to deal with them, and it's stressful. "No one remembers your name" could mean they don't want to deal with you, but I think it's just, when you're having the blues, you might take it as a kind of insult when someone forgets your name. People forget names all the time, and most have forgotten yours. When you're feeling OK, it's no big deal, but when you're unhappy, you can be touchy. "Streets are uneven when you're down", is more good imagery, and might be related to driving. Rough streets, that you normally ignore, become really irritating, triggering some rage. Maybe the rage is there already, and just looking for a thing to which it can be attached: a rough road. Everyone hates rough roads, so you can really hate this rough road you're driving on right now. Yes, it's so irritating, and you never noticed it before.

  6. anonymous
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    Dec 16th 2020 !⃝

    In my personal awakening I've struggled with the reasons why people are so keen on locking their doors and the fact that if someone wanted to enter into a residence they are simply able to use the windows. So people are strange to me because locks and doors and windows are all a fabrication of safety. The false peace of mind that they will be safe if they lock their doors or are accepted by a woman or are not the portrait of an ugly face or alone. Safety in numbers is in itself an oxymoron when the people in your numbers are not the people who are truly interested in you or your safety. Everything is an illusion, all of the world is a figment of the imagination, or everyone's own perspective of reality. The "paranoid " are deemed crazy and locked up, the sick are pushed into the fringes of society and preyed upon, the smart are burdened with responsibility for their knowledge and abilities, everyone is alone in truth, everyone is in the cycle to be recycled and the fact that faces come out of the rain might just mean they are scared of getting wet...Lyrics can't be interpreted by the words, its only meant to be interpreted as a whole, in the energy...the sound of the instruments,the way you're hearing the artists voice, and how you're resonating with the words vocalized and what your understanding of the words themselves to be will be how you are able to interpret the meaning of artists music if they are no longer around for you to ask them what they meant when they wrote said lyrics themselves...however what good is the knowledge of the songs meaning to anyone anyway..if you wrote some famous songs and everyone and their mother kept asking you what you meant by your words, would you want to tell them...what would make your explaining to everyone worth your time and effort and repetitive behavior over and over worth it? Who would be interested in the meaning of the artist and not that which their art illicits in their own minds?!?....?

  7. anonymous
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    Apr 9th 2020 !⃝

    During the era. The slang word Strange was a word intimate couples or married people used to use. It simply means another person to have sex with at the time when the relationship seems stale or boring. If you use that definition then you can interpret the song a completely different way. It was after all the sexual revolution and the generation of free love and resistance to conventional norms of monogamy. Can anyone else but Jim Himself ever really know the meaning of the lyrics? Perhaps other band members would if indeed they were told by him. Overall it doesn't matter. It is a brilliant piece of music and it captivates, entrances and the rhythmic tones sooth most people in spite of the truly undefinable lyrics. Morrison was a genius with an amazing talent and voice that will live on forever. As a legend and genius in life is rarely if ever forgotten by time when they are gone. The feeling of music and the individual who is listening to whatever it will always be subjective to whatever condition the human subject has or is experiencing. The genius of great music like this is that traps anyone who listens to it and continues to repeat in your head long after the music has stopped. The longevity of mortality is measured by the last person who ever speaks your name. Time will tell and we will never know if Morrison will live up to the measure of someone like Jesus or some other ancient God or godess. Because when you are strange, no one remembers your name. When you're Strange.
    ♡ Drew

  8. kooljohn176
    click a star to vote
    Jan 4th 2016 !⃝

    Could be about any individual when he finds himself by traveling to exotic foreign countries in that the people and the woman could feel to appear not welcoming to him by some strange and wicked that he senses in their ways. Them living there within their cultures that appear to the stranger vacationing there that they are strange in some way that he is not accustom to feel unwanted. This perplexity about woman nature in their inviornment could influence him evenmore to feel estranged from her. In this ''other meaning'', especially during depression to over think yourself ''of course'' you could dissociate yourself with certain drugs or alcohol in the long run to clash in the difficult times of your life to the point of the mind getting into paranoia state to feel the ugliness of the old wife tale myths told about women that comes to life as ''the stranger'' to the mind to feel yourself that you're becoming strange within your addictions, while your defences are getting weaker not to empower you from the illusion of the fear of a woman that appears there is a strange and wicked presence in her that you cannot control to feel otherwise.

  9. anonymous
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    Feb 27th 2013 !⃝

    Jim Morrison was going through severe depression/anxiety which causes one to feel alienated and depersonalized (I know first hand). You feel like everyone around you is in a whole different world because you can't relate to anybody. People misinterpret my intentions/humor all the time even when I what I'm doing or saying seems obvious to me. To me they seem strange, but I guess I am in the minority. Mental illness gives people a different perspective on life and those who have never experienced it will never understand.

  10. anonymous
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    Jan 1st 2013 !⃝

    I hear this as a dear Jon letter from Allan Lightman (or was it David) to the Jim Morrison of the internet that he would like his encyclopedia back...the one he made himself that obviously had a few leaks. *The electronic one (not the one on note cards).

    Of no interest,
    M. VoX*11

  11. anonymous
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    Sep 2nd 2012 !⃝

    People are strange speaks of everyone's struggle. Even if we share certain human qualities, we are essentially unique. We find ourselves feeling isolated, strange and misunderstood at times. We feel that our true worth is not fully acknowledged. The world seems unfair, gloomy and cold.

  12. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Feb 3rd 2012 !⃝

    Wow, everyone is really over-complicating this song lol.

    My favorite line is "women seem wicked when you're unwanted." So true. When you get dumped the reality is usually that they just weren't that into you, and it's nobody's fault, but in the moment it feels like they are cruel and evil for hurting you, right?

    "No one remembers your name" - when people don't understand you they just want to ignore you, because they can't wrap their heads around what you are.

  13. Andrey Andreata
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    Nov 5th 2011 !⃝

    I'm not sure when Jim wrote this, but I liked the 'suicide' point. This music comes to my mind when I really feel as a complete stranger to the world. In times of existencial crisis, nothing makes sense, turning you into the Stranger, like you don't belong to this world.

    So you take a walk, and observe people around you acting in completely strange way for you, because it really doesn't makes any sense, so they look 'ugly'. 'When you're alone', it's just because it seems you're the only one in a sea of people who has open eyes to see their strange behavior.

    It's a depressive mood. So that you can't even see atractiveness in women. This is so down and harsh to go through.

    That's what I think, it's expressing a feeling of a kind of existencial crisis, depicting a lone walk situation while experiencing that feeling.

  14. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Jan 12th 2011 !⃝

    I think the song has to do with anxiety, paranoia and mainly depression all jumbled together to cause this odd feeling that makes you seem different from everyone else.

  15. anonymous
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    Dec 16th 2010 !⃝

    To be honest before reading anything, I always imagined "when your strange". Is meant to be when your in an altered state.

  16. anonymous
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    Sep 10th 2010 !⃝

    I think it isn't simply focused on acid,depression, or people but a realization made while tripping. The thoughts that swirl through your head give you a deeper understanding of everything. Ideas intertwine and discoveries can be made.I think his thoughts were all racing around the strange qualities of all humans and when he found that people were strange he was strange.If you've ever had an epiphany on psychedelics or understood the flow and truth in the world while strange the song makes even more sense. Before you tell me I'm wrong try acid, see my point of view and open The Doors of perception in you mind.

  17. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Mar 1st 2010 !⃝

    From what I understand the song is actually about owing drug dealers money.

    -"People are strange, when you're a stranger, faces look ugly when you're alone" <--- Dealers don't want to do business with you when you owe them money.
    -"Women seem wicked when you're unwanted" <--- Drug chicks, when you're out and unable to pick up, want nothing to do with you.
    -"Streets are up even when you're down." <--- It sucks not being able to score.
    -"When you're strange, faces come out of the rain, when you're strange, no one remembers your name, when you're strange, when you're...straaaaaaange." <--- People jump out of no where looking for what's owed to them, some refuse to deal with you again because you took so long repaying your debt.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
  18. anonymous
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    Oct 11th 2009 !⃝

    i think the songs about isolation from other people, and the feeling of being an outcast compared to the rest of society.
    im sure it could have other meanings and interpretations but the basic idea is one of social rejection.
    the song reminds me of a kind of 'lonely hero'-type character, which i think jim certainly was

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