Home » Song Meanings » The Meaning Behind The Song: Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel) by Kansas

The Meaning Behind The Song: Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel) by Kansas


The Meaning Behind The Song: Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel) by Kansas

Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel) is a renowned song by the American rock band Kansas, released in 1975 as part of their album “Masque.” This iconic song vividly depicts the ancient Greek mythological tale of Icarus. Providing a captivating narrative, the song draws listeners into the tragic journey of Icarus and explores profound themes of ambition, consequence, and the human desire to conquer the impossible.

The song is structured around the well-known myth of Icarus, who attempted to escape imprisonment alongside his father, Daedalus, by constructing wings made of feathers and wax. As the song unfolds, the lyrics metaphorically connect Icarus’ journey to perilous endeavors in real life, illustrating the potential consequences of allowing ambition to overtake rationality.

The lyrics of “Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel)” encourage listeners to reflect on their own lives and aspirations. The desire to reach new heights, to soar above limitations, and to push the boundaries of what is thought to be possible are all themes beautifully captured in this timeless song. Furthermore, the contrasting image of Icarus’ tragic downfall serves as a powerful reminder of the importance of balance and humility in the pursuit of our dreams.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Song Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel)

1. What inspired Kansas to write “Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel)?”

Kansas drew inspiration from Greek mythology and the tale of Icarus, resonating with the parallels between Icarus’ ambition and the human desire to overcome obstacles.

2. What is the main message behind the song?

The main message of the song encourages listeners to reflect on the consequences of unchecked ambition and the importance of balance and humility in the pursuit of their dreams.

3. Were there any significant musical influences that shaped the sound of the song?

Kansas amalgamated their unique progressive rock sound with elements of classical music, perfectly evoking the grandiosity and tragic essence of Icarus’ story.

4. What emotions does the song evoke in listeners?

The song evokes a range of emotions such as awe, inspiration, and introspection. It takes listeners on an emotional journey by exploring the triumphs and pitfalls of unbridled ambition.

5. How does “Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel)” resonate with the listeners even today?

The song’s timeless themes continue to resonate with listeners who can relate to the desire to conquer the impossible and the cautionary tale of the consequences that ambition can bring.

6. What impact did “Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel)” have on Kansas’ career?

“Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel)” further solidified Kansas’ position in the rock music scene, showcasing their storytelling abilities and musical talent, which played a pivotal role in their sustained success.

7. How does the song reflect the band’s musical style?

The song epitomizes Kansas’ signature sound, characterized by intricate instrumentation, compelling lyrics, and a blend of rock and classical elements that set them apart from their contemporaries.

8. Does the song have any underlying symbolism?

The song embraces symbolism to convey deeper meanings. The flight of Icarus symbolizes humankind’s eternal struggle to transcend limitations and confront the consequences of their choices.

9. Are there any other songs in Kansas’ discography that explore similar themes?

Kansas often delves into profound themes in their music. “Dust in the Wind” is another significant song that explores human mortality and the fleeting nature of existence.

10. How did the song’s success contribute to the band’s legacy?

The success of “Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel)” solidified Kansas’ status as trailblazers in the progressive rock genre, leaving an enduring musical legacy that resonates with fans across generations.

11. Are there any notable live performances or adaptations of the song?

Kansas has performed “Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel)” in numerous live concerts, showcasing their virtuosity and captivating stage presence to captivated audiences.

12. What is the significance of the title “Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel)?”

The title highlights the song’s focus on Icarus’ audacious attempt to escape his circumstances, encapsulating the essence of the song’s exploration of ambition and its consequences.

Remember, the above frequently asked questions and their respective answers are intended to provide insight into the meaning behind the song “Icarus (Born on Wings of Steel)” by Kansas. Its captivating narrative and thought-provoking themes continue to resonate with listeners, solidifying its place as a timeless masterpiece in the rock music domain.

Rate this post

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

About Joseph L. Hollen

Joseph is a session musician, writer, and filmmaker from south Florida. He has recorded a number of albums and made numerous short films, as well as contributing music to shorts and commercials. 

He doesn't get as much time to practice and play as he used to, but still manages (just about!) to fulfill all his session requests. According to Joseph, it just gets harder as you get older; you rely on what you learned decades ago and can play without thinking. Thankfully that's what most producers still want from him.

He is a devout gear heat and has been collecting musical instruments all his life. As his wife, Jill, keeps on saying, "You're very good at buying nice instruments, but terrible at selling them!".

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top