Author Topic: Turn money into light to look for her  (Read 1506 times)

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Offline JFW

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Turn money into light to look for her
« on: February 01, 2017, 07:35:17 AM »
I understand a lot about Lemon. But the senctence 'He turns his money into light to look for her' is still a mystery to me.

I know that those lines sung by Edge having a personal view. But this I don't feel anything when I'm hearing this line: what means 'turning light into money'?



Offline DGordon1

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2017, 03:39:36 PM »
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I understand a lot about Lemon. But the senctence 'He turns his money into light to look for her' is still a mystery to me.

I know that those lines sung by Edge having a personal view. But this I don't feel anything when I'm hearing this line: what means 'turning light into money'?


I'm sure the song is about Bono watching old video of his mother after she had passed, in which she was wearing a lemon-coloured dress. And it's a celebration of the miraculous powers of technology when applied in a certain way, which is a bit if a contrast to the way technology is often portrayed through art. Anyway, I think that line refers to a symbolic inventor of video - he ploughed his wealth and time to develop this media, through which he could see his long lost love again.

Offline JFW

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2017, 05:50:59 PM »
Thanks for your respons, Gordon! But it does not make a lot of sense to me, if you see the rest so simple.

A man makes a picture, a moving picture
Definitely about a film!

through the light projected, he can see himself up close.
One of the benefits of a camera.

A man captures colour, a man likes to stare.
What to say about this, haha. Great sort line though.

He turns his money into light to look for her.

A man builds a city, with banks and cathedrals.
Yes, true, too.

A man melts the sand so he can see the world outside.
A bit useless, but who am I?

A man makes a car, and builds a road to run (them) on.
Bicylces, too!

A man dreams of leaving, but he always stays behind.
Uhuh!

Why that less logical and maybe directly - like you mention it - link to his mother?

Offline ShankAsu

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2017, 10:50:49 AM »
Could it possibly mean that through art/fame/money Bono is given the opportunity to dig into his past and explore/share his emotions?

Offline WookieeWarrior10

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2017, 11:41:23 AM »
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Could it possibly mean that through art/fame/money Bono is given the opportunity to dig into his past and explore/share his emotions?
That's what I was thinking. It makes the most sense to me, at least, the song being about his mother and all.

Offline Lizard

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2017, 12:52:34 PM »
I would see it a lot more trivial.

He turns his money into light - elctricity costs money, also time is money.
So: He spends time and money and shines a light through the film in order to look at the pictures.

Is that too trite?

Offline Saint1322

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2017, 03:17:07 PM »
I've been listening to Lemon for almost 25 years, and I never get tired of it.

Personally, I find 'A man melts the sand so he can see the world outside' to be brilliant. I mean, that's how glass is made, windows are made of glass, you look out windows to see outside. I think it ties in with the original question.

He turns his money into a light to look for her
Another image of using a resource, here money rather than sand, to be able to see, hear through lighting darkness rather than a window.  While the song originates with the story of the home video featuring Bono's mother in a yellow dress, I don't know that's what the whole song is about. Surely the lines about banks and cathedrals and a man makes a car don't directly tie back to the original theme.

I think the entire song, really, is about searching for something 'other'  in a world of confusion and, again, using resources, be it money, sand, videotape, etc., to find answers. As 'these are the days where our work ha come asunder ...' we are seeking order in the chaos and a plan in the random.

I think Bono just started riffing off the original idea of looking back through time thanks to the video to find his mother and went from there. His young life was thrown into chaos by his mother's death, and he's been trying to find order and reason since. The idea starts there, but it doesn't end there. The references to cars and banks brings the concept forward to adult life.

She had heaven, and she held on so tight ... I could talk about that one for three hours.


Offline Dali

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2017, 11:28:10 AM »
I always thought this song had a sleazy character or two in there. Now, with the additional information povided by you guys, it comes across as more positive and hopeful than I thought it was. That's interesting.

Offline ian ryan

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2017, 03:48:30 PM »
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Thanks for your respons, Gordon! But it does not make a lot of sense to me, if you see the rest so simple.

A man makes a picture, a moving picture
Definitely about a film!

through the light projected, he can see himself up close.
One of the benefits of a camera.

A man captures colour, a man likes to stare.
What to say about this, haha. Great sort line though.

He turns his money into light to look for her.

A man builds a city, with banks and cathedrals.
Yes, true, too.

A man melts the sand so he can see the world outside.
A bit useless, but who am I?

A man makes a car, and builds a road to run (them) on.
Bicylces, too!

A man dreams of leaving, but he always stays behind.
Uhuh!

Why that less logical and maybe directly - like you mention it - link to his mother?

I think it fits quite well with the rest of the lines. I mean, movies and TVs and whatever other sorts of light-based visual recording and display devices out there aren't free and spontaneous. They require research and you have to buy them.

Offline JTNash

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2017, 04:07:38 PM »
I listened to this today just to comment here.  Sometimes I think it just sounds cool to write things one way or another.  Sometimes it's deep and meaningful and other times it sounds cool or just rhymes like um heavy as a truck lol.

 But I think it means he used money for technology to take a past film and now be watching it on TV maybe? Our old movies were only able to be used in a projector when we got a video recorder it was like amazing technology New Media lol along with our aol.com email address

Offline JFW

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #10 on: February 06, 2017, 01:30:52 AM »
Yes, I think its's in that direction. Lizard said it well.

But still I think it's weird. I'll ask Bono one day  ;)

Offline Saint1322

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #11 on: February 07, 2017, 08:23:51 AM »
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I listened to this today just to comment here.  Sometimes I think it just sounds cool to write things one way or another.  Sometimes it's deep and meaningful and other times it sounds cool or just rhymes like um heavy as a truck lol.

 But I think it means he used money for technology to take a past film and now be watching it on TV maybe? Our old movies were only able to be used in a projector when we got a video recorder it was like amazing technology New Media lol along with our aol.com email address


I think that's a big part of it. Parents tend to film and photograph their kids ad naseum, which is funny, because in the natural order of things, kids outlive the parents and are the ones who need something to look back on. I had a similar experience with some old home movies we had transferred to VHS. I was excited about seeing my parents -- particularly my father who died when I was 18 -- when they were young, but I was disappointed that most of the footage was me as a baby or toddler rolling around in the floor.

Anyway, yeah, the new media as a way to look back through time. Bono was simply ON FIRE lyrically during this time.

LightMyWay92

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #12 on: February 07, 2017, 08:41:05 AM »
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I listened to this today just to comment here.  Sometimes I think it just sounds cool to write things one way or another.  Sometimes it's deep and meaningful and other times it sounds cool or just rhymes like um heavy as a truck lol.

 But I think it means he used money for technology to take a past film and now be watching it on TV maybe? Our old movies were only able to be used in a projector when we got a video recorder it was like amazing technology New Media lol along with our aol.com email address


I think that's a big part of it. Parents tend to film and photograph their kids ad naseum, which is funny, because in the natural order of things, kids outlive the parents and are the ones who need something to look back on. I had a similar experience with some old home movies we had transferred to VHS. I was excited about seeing my parents -- particularly my father who died when I was 18 -- when they were young, but I was disappointed that most of the footage was me as a baby or toddler rolling around in the floor.

Anyway, yeah, the new media as a way to look back through time. Bono was simply ON FIRE lyrically during this time.
He really was writing great lyrics during the Achtung Baby/Zooropa period.  When he switched from the more poetic imagery of the Unforgettable Fire and The Joshua Tree and moved in a more personal direction, the floodgates just opened.  As an opinion question, do you think "Lemon" is too long?  Would it be more effective if it was shortened a little?  Sometimes I find my attention being drawn away while listening to it.  I agree that it is a very good song.

Offline Canadanne

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #13 on: February 07, 2017, 09:40:51 AM »
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I listened to this today just to comment here.  Sometimes I think it just sounds cool to write things one way or another.  Sometimes it's deep and meaningful and other times it sounds cool or just rhymes like um heavy as a truck lol.

 But I think it means he used money for technology to take a past film and now be watching it on TV maybe? Our old movies were only able to be used in a projector when we got a video recorder it was like amazing technology New Media lol along with our aol.com email address


I think that's a big part of it. Parents tend to film and photograph their kids ad naseum, which is funny, because in the natural order of things, kids outlive the parents and are the ones who need something to look back on. I had a similar experience with some old home movies we had transferred to VHS. I was excited about seeing my parents -- particularly my father who died when I was 18 -- when they were young, but I was disappointed that most of the footage was me as a baby or toddler rolling around in the floor.

Anyway, yeah, the new media as a way to look back through time. Bono was simply ON FIRE lyrically during this time.
He really was writing great lyrics during the Achtung Baby/Zooropa period.  When he switched from the more poetic imagery of the Unforgettable Fire and The Joshua Tree and moved in a more personal direction, the floodgates just opened.  As an opinion question, do you think "Lemon" is too long?  Would it be more effective if it was shortened a little?  Sometimes I find my attention being drawn away while listening to it.  I agree that it is a very good song.

I think Lemon is perfect in every way. My favourite U2 song.

Offline ian ryan

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Re: Turn money into light to look for her
« Reply #14 on: February 07, 2017, 10:04:16 PM »
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As an opinion question, do you think "Lemon" is too long?  Would it be more effective if it was shortened a little?  Sometimes I find my attention being drawn away while listening to it.  I agree that it is a very good song.

Not at all! I listen to the shorter versions like the single edit or the live version and it doesn't feel long enough. One of the things I like about U2 songs in the '90s is that they weren't afraid to go over 5 minutes. When Lemon hits the bridge, thats a better reminder to me than anything else they've ever made that U2 can make works of genius. The album version of Lemon is perhaps the most incredible piece of music they've ever made, factoring in lyrics, musicality, and ambition.