If you own a business you know there is one goal you should to focus on.
Stay. Out. Of. The. Red.
If not, your business fails. Retailers understand this goal. See there’s this silly day called Black Friday. It’s the day after Thanksgiving, and it’s called Black Friday because that’s the day where retailers, due in part to ridiculous price cuts and ravenous consumers, count on sales to move their ledger from the red to black. Now, I am not saying that Red is a song centered around saving businesses and commerce. Not at all. But Red is a song about saving. In this case Red is a song about Sara saving herself.
The color red is an alert. A warning. But red is also the color of perceived happiness. Who doesn’t like a red firetruck, or want a red balloon as a kid? A red bike, or sports car? Red Starburst, jelly bean or Red Ryder BB Gun? Red, while a color of warning is also one of comfort, warmth and accomplishment. Sara explores this balance of the color red in the lyrics. She has devoted herself to life on the road she has to be mindful of warnings that can place her sanity in the red while chasing success. Things like the jerks, creeps and d-bags Sara talks references in City. Things like rejection and negativity that if dwelled on can bring her down. Or perhaps things like the separation from family and friends, lovers and companions that used to be there to lift her up when times became mentally bleak. At it’s core, Red is a message of strength and independence.
Sara’s perspective tells us that in her isolation she’s developed coping measures to pull herself out of the red.
So that she can enjoy the red things in life.
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