Stevie Cliff – Bags – Song Backstory

stevie cliff bags
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Bags is a song I wrote while in Sardinia on holiday about 5 years ago. Despite it being written that long ago I have only played it live a handful of times. Late 2011 I was just about to move to New York and recall being quite excited about the upcoming adventure. At the time I was nurturing the habit of creative discipline that I have been developing since I was a teenager. For the entire holiday around the 6pm mark I would sit down and write for a solid two hours. In my book creativity is 80 per cent perspiration/20 per cent inspiration. These two hours were my equivalent of clocking in for a shift at the time!

Over the course of the holiday I wrote one or two things that stood out but none really resonated with my core.

Bags was different.

After writing it I played it to several people close to me. They all took different meanings from it. Some interpreted it as the shifting of responsibility between a child and a parent with the passing of time. Others took it as a commentary on friendship and its importance in allowing people to deal with emotional pain.

For me the song is about letting go & how interpersonal relationships whether they be familial or friend-like in nature are both a foundation and catalyst for doing so.

Have a listen/look at the lyrics and see what it means to you.


These battered old bags
Faded fabric frontiers
Used to ope for joy
& Pack Away Fears

You stack them one by one
Pattern old as sin
I held out for you
Now you keep it all in

If I had my way, I would chop and change all day
Until that loathsome luggage could no longer hold your pain

Leave it all behind

They carry your ghosts
Pale remnants of soul
Give them to me
Lighten your load

My back is strong
Unburdened by time
Give me your bags
Let the load become mine

I’ll wait until your not looking and cast them out to sea
Then hoist you on my shoulders
Like you once carried me

Leave it all behind

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