Free To Decide

Artist: The Cranberries
Released on: To The Faithful Departed (Track #4)
Song Length: 4:25

CREDIT INFORMATION

Music and Lyrics by D. O’Riordan.
Produced by Bruce Fairbairn and The Cranberries.
Engineered and Mixed by Mike Plotnikoff.
Recorded in November, December 1995 in Dublin, Ireland at Windmill Lane Studios.
Orchestration written and arranged by Michael Kamen.
Published by Island Music Ltd.

LYRICS

It’s not worth anything more than this at all
I live as I choose or I will not live a-at all
So return to where you’ve come from
Return to where you dwell
Because harassments not my forte
But you do it very well

I’m free to decide, I’m free to deci-i-ide
And I’m not so suicidal after all
I’m free to decide, I’m free to deci-i-ide
And I’m not so suicidal after a-a-all (at all, at all, at all)

You must have nothing more with your time to do
There’s a war in Russia and Sarajevo too
So to hell with what you’re thinking
And to hell with your narrow mind
You’re so distracted from the real thing
You should leave your life behind (behind)

Cause I’m free to decide, I’m free to deci-i-ide
And I’m not so suicidal after all
I’m free to decide, I’m free to deci-i-ide
And I’m not so suicidal after a-a-all (at all, at all, at all)
Hi-i-i-i-i, ha-a la-a la-a, lalala
I’m free to decide, I’m free to deci-i-ide
And I’m not so suicidal after a-a-all (at all, at all, at all)
At all, at all, at all

MEANING

Fergal (November 2002, Hot Press) : “That was basically just because we were starting to get a bit of blacklash in the press, not all of it obviously, but you read the reviews and stuff and you start taking them personally. That’s a song saying ‘Fuck you’ to the begrudgers, I’m entitled to my opinion, and if you don’t like it, fine, don’t listen to it, but don’t make a personal attack on me just ‘cos you don’t like what I’m saying.”

Dolores (Details, 1996): “That’s what “Free To Decide” is about. I’d been on tour for a year or so and I was feeling sick, so we canceled a few gigs we had in Ireland. And I woke up one morning when the doorbell rang, and there was a man standing at my door with a camera, and he said, “What? Leave”. I was frightened. And then that evening I was still feeling sick and really tired, but I went shopping, and the next morning I woke up and it was the main story in the papers: “She’s too much of a rock star now to do her gig in Ireland, and she says she has a sore knee, yet I saw her running into the supermarket”. And so in that song I was saying it’s not worth me turning into a real bitch and losing everything spiritually. Because I work too hard, and If I want to take three weeks off I’ll take them, and to hell with everybody else – it’s my life.

Dolores (MTV, 1996): “The media started giving me a really hard time. There were just pictures of me kind of shopping, packing my groceries, on the front cover of all the magazines, all the Irish papers and stuff like that. And it was just kind of really bitchy on their behalf. And they were just saying that I was being a little pop star, and I was pulling the Irish shows — not caring, obviously, about how I felt as I person, as one side of the media can be like that. It can be very insensitive and uncaring towards many types of artists, you know?

NOTES

  • Free To Decide is the 2nd single released from To The Faithful Departed in July 1996.
  • The song was probably played for the first time in Utrecht (Holland) August 2nd 1995.

OTHER RELEASES

  • Free To Decide (snippet) [:38], Salvation Promo CD (US), 1996
  • Free To Decide (radio edit)
    • [3:53], Free To Decide Promo CD (UK), 1996
    • [3:53], Feel The Sunshine, promo CD (UK), 1996
  • Free To Decide (alternate mix) [4:24], Free To Decide Promo CD (US), 1996
  • Free To Decide (alternate version edit) [3:23], Stars The Best Of 1992-2002, 2002
  • Free To Decide (live at Pine Knob, Clarkston, US, 1996)
    • When You’re Gone CD single (Australia, Canada, France, Japan & US), 1996
    • To The Faithful  Departed Bonus Disc “Live In Detroit” (Australia, 1996)
    • [3:14], Bualadh Bos, 2010
  • Free To Decide (live in Nantes, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Free To Decide (live in Madrid, 2010)
    • Live 2010, 2010
    • Roses 2 CD Deluxe Edition, 2012
  • Free To Decide (live in Barcelona, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Free To Decide (live in Milano, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Free To Decide (live in Lyon, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Free To Decide (live in Paris, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Free To Decide (live in Amsterdam, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Free To Decide (live in Berlin, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Free To Decide (live in London, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Free To Decide (live at The Hammersmith Apollo, London, UK, 2012) [3:09], Live 2012, 2012
  • Free To Decide (live at Zénith, Caen, France, 2012) [3:07], Live 2012, 2012

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