Sheep Go To Heaven
by Cake

Album: Prolonging the Magic (1998)


  • This song is about acceptance. Those who follow blindly (sheep) are accepted or go to heaven, and those who form their own opinions are goats, and are not accepted or go to hell. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Marc - Toronto, Canada
  • The lyrics are based on a passage in the New Testament of The Bible: Gospel of Matthew chapter 25. In this passage, a shepherd divides his sheep and goats, with the sheep going to heaven and the goats to hell.
  • Because goats have cloven feet, they were considered unclean. The lyrics, "I just want to play on my panpipe, I just want to drink me some wine. As soon as you're born, you start dying, so you might as well have a good time," indicate that you can't help whether or not you're born with cloven feet, so just don't worry about it and have a good time. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Adel - Jonesborough, TN

Comments: 4

  • Jared from AusThis song also has links to absurdist theatre, in Samuel becketts 'Waiting for Godot' (1948-1949) it states "the grave digger puts on the forceps" this it a direct link to the concept of being enlisted to die at birth, forceps are used (or at least were used in the time of the plays writing) to deliver a child. Implying you were born to die, which kinda links into the whole song
  • Colin from EarthYou guys have the right idea but seem to be missing some very blunt Christian/Pagan imagery. "The carpenter can take you out to lunch" Jesus was a carpenter, and the good sheep will dine with Him in Heaven.

    Conversely, Pan was the Greek half man/half goat (satyr) diety of wine and revelry, and the namesake of the panpipes. The singer is making it plain he wants to have a good time like a goat-legged pagan party god and doesn't care for being a good sheep.
  • Kerry Ditson from Shrewsbury, MaThis song always reminded me of death, with the "gravedigger puts on the forceps" (pretty obvious), "The stonemason does all the work" (tombstone) "The barber will give you a haircut" (Cutting the hair of the dead/making them look nice before burial) "The carpenter will take you out to lunch" (Coffin). I think it's about the singer coming to terms with the death of someone he loved, and wondering what happened to them.
  • Jas from Clifton, TxThis song is oddly pretty ingenious. I really like the whole theme of the song, that society will judge you based on things like outward appearances regardless of the fact that you can't change who you are without being totally artificial. Why worry about what people think when they are only going to see things their way anyway?
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Charles FoxSongwriter Interviews

After studying in Paris with a famous composition teacher, Charles became the most successful writer of TV theme songs.

Dar WilliamsSongwriter Interviews

A popular contemporary folk singer, Williams still remembers the sticky note that changed her life in college.

Jim McCarty of The YardbirdsSongwriter Interviews

The Yardbirds drummer explains how they created their sound and talks about working with their famous guitarists.

Graduation SongsFact or Fiction

Have you got the smarts to know which of these graduation song stories are real?

Little Big TownSongwriter Interviews

"When seeds that you sow grow by the wicked moon/Be sure your sins will find you out/Your past will hunt you down and turn to tell on you."

Dan ReedSongwriter Interviews

Dan cracked the Top 40 with "Ritual," then went to India and spent 2 hours with the Dalai Lama.