Sonny Elliot’s “Broken Glasses” is an eerie wonderland of sadness and despair.
Within the lines of brotherly duo Chris and Joe Peden’s ethereal love song, lies a quiet home for the lost, alone, and despondent. The opening notes are sedative in nature, fashioning a calming effect upon the minds of the listener. This cool, smooth beat creates a comforting vibe that immediately sucked me in. The mellow vibe brilliantly contrasts with the sorrowful subject matter found in the lyrics.
While the subject matter is quite disheartening, experiencing Sonny Elliot’s song is like drinking warm milk in the middle of the night after a nightmare- a practical exercise not often done in modern times, just as Sonny Elliot’s song recalls the lost practice of compassion. It’s a soothing trip into an often-unexplored facet of the mind: empathetic sadness.
The singer notices the little things about his friend’s abusive life- the details that don’t add up to a happy ending.
<blockquote<You’ve got scars on your wrists
And his name in a heart tattoo
This compassion for another, with no harsh opinions thrown at them, is quite refreshing to listen to. On the one hand, I find it quite normal to not want to be sad, and to either ignore or gloss over the distressing aspects of others’ lives. I know many individuals who like to pretend everything is always alright, and when sadness befalls upon their friends or family, they either don’t want to or don’t know how to lend a guiding hand or simply a sympathetic ear. There’s nothing innately wrong with this, but it’s inspiring to hear such a delicately sweet song spout spoonfuls of empathetic observations, truth, and quiet attempts of cheering up his abused friend.
No unrealistic optimism lives in this song. Idealism is not the goal in these lyrics; instead, Sonny Elliot provides a simple interruption for those who have been hurt. They do not promise grand gestures of life-changing transformations, just seemingly mundane experiences for the gentle soul. The lyrics, though mentioning personal details at some points, are quite universal in nature.
Sonny Elliot sings:
Let’s go driving round at night
Getting lost in the moonlight
Play our favorite songs
Dance around under street lights
I adore songs that tell a unique story that anyone can imagine themselves in. Driving around at night, getting lost and dancing, seems to be an ideal situation for any covert hipster or creative spirit. It’s a wonderful pick-me-up adventure to lose yourself in for a little while. The singer may not know exactly how to fix his friend’s life, but this song is a proclamation of love in the truest sense, as he just wants to make her happy even if she can’t see just how sad she is herself.
You can’t see through
What makes me saddest
Is how he hurt you
I love how the soothing voice, sweetly innocent like a wisp of cotton candy, aids in consistently conveying the sensitivity throughout their song. This softly wise voice is the perfect narrator for such a sad tale of a victim of abuse. These broken glasses Sonny Elliot speak about is a lovely metaphor for living with abuse. The abused victim looks at her life, and her abuser, through a distorted lens, not fully aware of how sad, and potentially dangerous, her situation is. I love how the message in this song is not one of judgement, but rather empathy and compassion. The singer does not focus on the victim’s abuser, or the life she lives as a victim of abuse, but rather, he sings of the happy experiences he wishes to give his friend, like dancing under the street lights, and how he will always be there for her.
And if the rain falls on you
I will be there too
And if the rain falls on you
I will help you through
If you want to experience a story of simple, pure love in the face of abuse, then give this magical little song a listen. We can all learn some empathy from Sonny Elliot’s “Broken Glasses.” The theme of abuse, compassion, and love create a distinctly intimate vibe for listeners of “Broken Glasses.” One feels privy to this narrator and his tragic friend’s story. Listening to this song, no matter where you are, will transport you into their world.
My first listen, I felt like I was laying in bed with the two tragic friends, perhaps drinking warm tea, tracing the girl’s heart-shaped tattoo, and listening to the rain fall on all of us.
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