Meaning of “Ride” by Lana Del Rey

Written By Michael Miller

Michael is a music teacher and professional cellist. He loves uncovering the deeper meaning of popular songs.

“Ride” by Lana Del Rey is a soulful exploration of freedom, loneliness, and the pursuit of authenticity. It tells a story of escapism, reflecting the artist’s personal struggles and journey to find peace within chaos. Lana uses vivid imagery to illustrate a life on the road, a continuous journey symbolizing her quest for self-discovery and true expression. She portrays a battle within her mind, a fight between conforming and embracing her true self, all while portraying a sense of longing for connection and stability. The song is not just about a person, but a universal experience and the human condition.

 Discover the powerful symbolism and intense emotions captured in Lana Del Rey’s lyrical masterpiece as we delve into the essence of her words and the stories behind them!

“Ride” Lyrics Meaning

Lana’s “Ride” starts with a portrayal of a life untethered, a soul wandering the open road. The “full-time, daddy, white and gold” symbolizes a desire for a stable, affluent, and secure connection in the midst of her nomadic existence. It signifies a craving for permanence in a transient life.

The expression, “Singing blues has been getting old,” denotes a weariness from a life of continuous sorrow, expressing a desire to experience other dimensions of life. It’s a call for a different tune, a change from the monotonous melancholy she’s been enveloped in.

“I hear the birds on the summer breeze, I drive fast. I am alone at midnight,” further illustrates Lana’s solitude and her acute awareness of her surroundings. The juxtaposition of the serene and the speed signifies a paradoxical existence – a tranquil chaos.

The recurring theme of having a “war in my mind” and trying “hard not to get into trouble” paints a picture of internal strife, a combat between conformity and rebellion. It’s Lana’s way of expressing her internal conflicts and dilemmas, a constant tug of war between wanting freedom and craving acceptance.

She proclaims, “I just ride,” indicating her chosen method of coping – to keep moving, to keep exploring, and to keep experiencing. This line is a powerful declaration of Lana’s determination to continue her journey, regardless of the internal battles she faces.

“Dying young and playing hard. That’s the way my father made his life an art,” here, Lana may be making a reference to living life fully, regardless of its brevity, and turning it into an art form, possibly drawing parallels to her own life and her father’s influence on her philosophies.

The intense emotions surface more palpably as she mentions, “I’m tired of feeling like I’m fucking crazy. I’m tired of driving ’til I see stars in my eyes.” This marks a moment of exhaustion from constant battling and moving, revealing a vulnerable side and a cry for stability and sanity.

In the pursuit of sanity, she resorts to the only solution she deems fit: “So I just ride, I just ride.” It’s her escape, her refuge. Lana embraces her journey, accepting the solace found in solitude and the continuous movement, realizing that, perhaps, the journey itself is the destination.

Why Was “Ride” Written?

Understanding why “Ride” was written requires a closer look at Lana’s life at the time. During the period leading up to the release of this song, Lana Del Rey was grappling with intense scrutiny and overwhelming pressure from the public and media. This external chaos resonated with her internal world, creating a tumultuous environment where she fought to maintain her sense of self and artistic integrity.

“Ride” can be seen as Lana’s introspective journey and self-reflection, a way to navigate through her tumultuous emotions and thoughts. The lyrics reflect a state of mind immersed in conflicts and contradictions, revealing a deep longing for authenticity and freedom from societal expectations and self-imposed limitations.

The song’s narrative, its poignant expressions, and the elaborate, vivid imagery are a testament to Lana’s artistic depth and her ability to transform her experiences, thoughts, and emotions into a timeless piece that resonates with many. It’s not just a song; it’s a deeply personal statement, a piece of Lana’s soul encapsulated in music, allowing listeners to empathize, relate, and perhaps, just ride.