I’m not one to analyze Rock n Roll lyrics, even my own. I just enjoy listening to music. When I was a kid the Beatles were the greatest band in the world to me. I even liked them more than Kiss. That’s a big deal for a ten-year-old Kiss freak to like something else better. I think it’s because my natural Mother, paranoid schizophrenic Mother, used to listen to the Beatles a lot. She would sing All My Loving while giving me a bath when I was a wee little one. It sparked something in me.
So, when I first heard Nowhere Man, I thought it was about this loser who was going nowhere and doing nothing. As I got older I thought the same thing except for the line “isn’t he a bit like you and me?” I realized they were writing about themselves. The part of themselves that they don’t like. We all have a nowhere man in us. I loved the song as I do most Beatles’ songs and stopped thinking about it’s meaning until I watched the movie Yellow Submarine. There was a character in the movie that they referred to as the Nowhere Man. He seemed like and unfocused out of his mind creature that they felt sorry for.
I just watched this clip from the movie after listening to the song and thinking about it. Nowhere Man is actually a happy creature or person. He’s ok with creating and doing and living and breathing without the rest of the world’s approval. It sounds appealing. I listened to the lyrics and realized that I am a Nowhere Man.
I used to think that the line “you don’t know what you’ve been missing’ meant that he should be out in the world and see everything that society thinks he should see or experience. Now I interpret it as he’s not missing much. “The world is at your command” because you are a nowhere man. That is me. More times than not anyway.
At the end of the musical segment of Yellow Submarine Ringo wants to take the Nowhere Man with them. John says “He’s happy enough running in circles.” That’s the way I feel sometimes. I’m happy living in my Nowhere Land making nowhere plans for nobody. Then once in a while I get to ride the Yellow Submarine of life with friends and enjoy myself but deep inside I am a nowhere man. It’s really not that bad of a thing. I get things done. I’m happy. I’m a bit like you and them.