The Meaning Behind The Song: Never One Thing by May Erlewine
As a music teacher, I have had the pleasure of discovering countless beautiful songs throughout my career. One song that has always stood out to me is “Never One Thing” by May Erlewine. I remember the first time I heard this song, it was playing softly in the background during a quiet moment at a friend’s house. From the very first notes, I was captivated by the haunting melody and Erlewine’s soulful voice.
“The song ‘Never One Thing’ was inspired by the Walt Whitman verse: ‘I am large, I contain multitudes,'” Erlewine explained. And indeed, this song is a powerful exploration of the complexity of human nature. It is a song about personal revolution and accepting and caring for all parts of ourselves. It challenges the idea of categorization and labels, urging us to embrace the many facets of our being.
The lyrics are simple yet profound, with each verse presenting a dichotomy of opposing qualities. In the chorus, Erlewine sings, “I’m the underbelly, I am the claw, Never one thing no, not one thing at all.” This repetitive refrain serves as a reminder that we are not defined by a single characteristic or identity. We are a blend of contradictions and contradictions, and that is what makes us beautifully human.
Listening to “Never One Thing,” I am reminded of the struggles and triumphs I have experienced in my own life. Like the song suggests, I have sometimes felt like an underbelly and a claw, navigating through the complexities of life. As a music teacher, I have had moments of feeling like a street fighter, fiercely advocating for my students’ education. But at the same time, I have also found solace in the peacefulness of prayer and the sweetness of connection, much like a honey bee.
The music video for “Never One Thing” is equally moving. Erlewine drew inspiration from Frida Kahlo’s self-portraits, seeking to celebrate the many aspects of womanhood. The shots in the video show women embracing their pain and limitations while simultaneously honoring their empowerment and self-acceptance. It is a visual representation of the song’s message, further reinforcing the idea that we should embrace all parts of ourselves, both the beautiful and the painful.
“Never One Thing” is a beautiful reminder that we are multifaceted beings, constantly evolving and growing. It encourages us to break free from societal constraints and rejoice in the complexity of our existence. As a music teacher, I often share this song with my students, hoping to inspire them to embrace their unique qualities and celebrate their own multitudes.
In conclusion, May Erlewine’s “Never One Thing” is a powerful song that explores the depth and complexity of human nature. It serves as a reminder that we are not defined by a single characteristic, but rather a beautiful blend of contradictions. This song resonates deeply with me as a music teacher, as it challenges me to encourage my students to embrace their uniqueness and celebrate their multitudes. May we all strive to be never one thing, but rather a beautiful symphony of contradictions.