The song Handlebars by the Flobots tells the story of a boy as he evolves into a super powerful world dominating megalomaniac.
I first heard this song as a soundtrack to a homemade bmx video somebody posted on YouTube. When I heard the beginning of the song I had no idea what was going to happen but there was a sense of sinister momentum to the sound and lyrics that foreshadowed what the boy would ultimately become.
The bmx stuff was okay but I loved the song right away and went to go get it as soon as the video was over. Not only did it have great energy but the storytelling was just so freaking engaging I couldn’t believe it. Have a listen, hopefully you have the same reaction I did:
The person who wrote this song (Jamie Laurie) said the lyrics came to him when his mind wandered as he practiced riding his bike with no hands:
The lyrics came to me as I was riding a bike home from work with my hands in the air – I had just learned how to do it – and I felt triumphant, but at the same time, I knew there were people at that moment who were being bombed by our own country. And I thought that was incredibly powerful. We have these little moments of creativity, these bursts of innovation, and every time that happens, that innovation is used to oppress and destroy people. So it struck me as beautiful and tragic at the same time.
I find it interesting how often wandering minds are behind good songs and books (it’s a good excuse to let your mind wander). Anyway, I totally love the strong storytelling in this song I wish there were more like it out there …if you know of any let me know.