Never Grow Old

Artist: The Cranberries
Released on: Wake Up And Smell The Coffee (Track #1)
Song Length: 2:36

Credit information

Music by D. O’Riordan.
Lyrics by D. O’Riordan.
Produced by Stephen Street.
Engineered by Cenzo Townsend assisted by Emma Jane Lennon and Shay Dooher at Windmill Lane, Dublin.
Mixed at Town House Studios, Shepherds Bush (London) by Stephen Street and Cenzo Townsend assisted by Tom Stanley.
Mastered at Sterling Sound by George Marino.
Publishing administered by Universal Music Publishing, Ltd, London.

Lyrics

I have a dream, strange it may seem
It was my perfect day
Open my eyes, I realise, this is my perfect day

Hope you’ll never grow old
Hope you’ll never grow old
Hope you’ll never grow o-old
Hope you’ll never grow old
Du lu du du, du lu du du, du lu du du lu du
Du lu du du, du lu du du, du lu du du lu du

Birds in the sky, they look so high
This is my perfect day
I feel the breeze, I feel at ease
It is my perfect day

Hope you’ll never grow old
Hope you’ll never grow old
Hope you’ll never grow o-old
Hope you’ll never grow old

Forever yo-oung, I hope you’ll stay, forever yo-oung
Du lu du du, du lu du du, du lu du du lu du
Du lu du du, du lu du du, du lu du du du

Meaning

In an interview given in 2002, Fergal explained that the song “was written for Dolores’ new baby daughter Molly”.

In an interview given to VH1 in 2002, Dolores was asked what was some of the little things that she enjoyed the most about life, she answered: “Things like just going out and lying in grass and looking at clouds, and making shapes out of the clouds in my head. I know it sounds terrible, but in [Wake Up and Smell the Coffee’s] “Never Grow Old,” the lyric, “Birds In the sky/ They look so high” is from a personal experience. I was walking along a countryside road with my children in a pram. My little girl was asleep and my son was holding on. I was looking at them, and I was thinking, ‘God, this moment’s perfect. I hope it never goes.’ As I was looking at my kids I had a flash, and I became my mother and my daughter became me. I suddenly thought, ‘Jeez, I’m moving a generation here… aah.’ I got scared. It was like, ‘I’m not a child anymore.’ But as I was thinking about my childhood, I remember that when I was in the pram I used to look up. I started looking up at the sky and the birds were flying around. I thought, ‘Those birds look really high.’ They just perch somewhere, have a little bit of a crap, fly off, perch somewhere else and eat a worm, so carefree. I thought, ‘Birds have a great life. There’s no stress.’ Sometimes when I’m feeling stressed, I look at birds. It helps. My children opened the doors and took me back into my childhood for a few minutes, and that’s a great thing. So many adults are always trying to return to that beautiful naivety and that freedom. It’s almost an out-of-this-world kind of experience, where you’ll have a flash from your childhood.

Notes

  • The song was played live for the first time during the “Live from the Lounge” (Los Angeles, California, US, August 13th 2001)
  • The song was regularly played during the Wake Up And Smell The Coffee Tour in 2002. After their reunion in 2009, the band played the song during their three last concerts of the summer tour in Asia in 2011: Beijing (China, July 28th 2011), Taipei (Taipei, July 30th 2011) and Singapore (Singapore, August 1st 2011).
  • In an interview to Hot Press in November 2001, Dolores explained how she wrote the song: “’Never Grow Old’ is a song I wrote with no music whatsoever. I was walking outside here, with my little baby in a pram and my son with me and I started singing. ‘I have a dream / Strange it may seem / This is my perfect day’. So I ran home and tried to get down the chords on the piano but didn’t because I was distracted. The baby was crying! So I lost it. But the next day I woke up and it came back to me so I wrote it at the piano, then played it with the lads”.
  • The song was used in the TV series Alias (season 1 episode 1, “Truth Be Told”, 2001).

Other releases

  • N/A

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