The Anointed One
Ted Leo and the Pharmacists Lyrics


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the annointed one - fathers favorite son
now we see, long before the race, you'd already won.
oh beautified, with the softest eyes,
these days I can't escape your face, do you remember mine?
oh, it haunts me.
ooh, what a fool I must have been.
we saw red, not green, when we were nineteen.
now something's different,
something happened, somewhere therebetween.
by the river bend,
did I misapprehend your sincerity
or is it that you have changed, friend?
oh, it haunts me.
ooh, how could I not have seen what you'd become?
but you fooled everyone.
lace curtains in our slum.
you are the annointed one.
Alright!
watching you grow with the pride of a friend,
kissing off school - there were rules to be bent.
knelt by your side through our crises of faith.
mine was on time, but for you it was already too late.
in the capitol, with your freezer full,
do you represent your district, or your daddy's will?
oh, it haunts me.
ooh, how could i not have seen what you'd become?
but you fooled everyone.
lace curtains in our slum.
you are the annointed one.
What have you become?
Ah! You fooled everyone.




Lace cutains in our slum.
You were the annointed one.

Overall Meaning

The song "The Anointed One" by Ted Leo and the Pharmacists is a reflective tune about a childhood friend who has become a successful and well-liked politician, to the surprise and disappointment of the singer. The opening lines, "the annointed one - fathers favorite son, now we see, long before the race, you'd already won," suggest that the singer recognizes that his friend had been groomed by his family for success from an early age, and had likely been given advantages and opportunities that were not available to the singer. The line "we saw red, not green, when we were nineteen" suggests that the two friends were once idealistic and naive, perhaps pursuing "red" (left-wing) ideology, but that the successful friend has turned to more pragmatic, "green" (right-wing) politics.


The singer expresses his disappointment and confusion throughout the song, questioning whether his friend has changed, or whether the singer simply misunderstood him all along. The lines "did I misapprehend your sincerity, or is it that you have changed, friend?" suggest that the singer doubts whether his friend's success has come at the cost of his morals, or if he was always more interested in career advancement than in doing what is right. The chorus, "ooh, how could I not have seen what you'd become? but you fooled everyone. lace curtains in our slum. you are the annointed one," suggests that the singer recognizes his own naivete in not seeing his friend's true motives earlier, and that his success has set him apart from the singer's own humble origins.


Line by Line Meaning

the annointed one - fathers favorite son
The person being addressed in the song is referred to as the 'annointed one' who is the favorite son of his father. His father's influence and support have contributed to his success.


now we see, long before the race, you'd already won.
The person was destined for success and had already secured it before even starting the journey. This was apparent to those around them.


oh beautified, with the softest eyes, these days I can't escape your face, do you remember mine?
The person being addressed is attractive and has a memorable face that sticks with the singer. The singer wonders if the 'annointed one' remembers them.


oh, it haunts me.
The singer is troubled or affected by something in regards to the 'annointed one'.


ooh, what a fool I must have been.
The singer regrets something they did or didn't do in regards to the 'annointed one'.


we saw red, not green, when we were nineteen.
The singer and the 'annointed one' were young at one point and did not make the best decisions. They acted impulsively without considering the consequences.


now something's different, something happened, somewhere therebetween.
Something has changed between the singer and the 'annointed one'. The singer is not sure what caused it but knows it is different than before.


by the river bend, did I misapprehend your sincerity or is it that you have changed, friend?
The singer reflects on a moment by the river and wonders if they misinterpreted the 'annointed one's' sincerity in their friendship. The singer is unsure if the 'annointed one' has changed or if they just read the situation incorrectly.


ooh, how could I not have seen what you'd become? but you fooled everyone.
The singer is surprised they did not see the 'annointed one's' true character or intentions sooner. The 'annointed one' was able to fool everyone, including the singer.


lace curtains in our slum. you are the annointed one.
The 'annointed one' is seen as someone who has risen above their circumstances and surroundings. They are the chosen one, set apart from everyone else.


alright!
An expression of enthusiasm or agreement by the singer.


watching you grow with the pride of a friend, kissing off school - there were rules to be bent.
The singer watched the 'annointed one' grow and develop with a sense of pride and loyalty as a friend. The 'annointed one' had a rebellious streak and was willing to break or bend the rules for their own gain.


knelt by your side through our crises of faith. mine was on time, but for you it was already too late.
The singer supported the 'annointed one' through difficult times when faith was tested. The singer's crisis of faith was resolved in time but the 'annointed one' did not have that same opportunity.


in the capitol, with your freezer full, do you represent your district, or your daddy's will?
The 'annointed one' has achieved a high level of success and power. The singer questions whether the 'annointed one' is using their position to represent and serve the people they were elected to serve, or if they are simply fulfilling their father's wishes.


what have you become? ah! you fooled everyone. lace curtains in our slum. you were the annointed one.
The singer is still surprised at what the 'annointed one' has become and how they fooled everyone. They are still seen as the chosen one who rose above their surroundings and circumstances.




Lyrics © O/B/O APRA AMCOS

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