Album: Lesser Oceans (2014)
  • songfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • Fences is a Seattle three-piece comprising frontman Christopher Mansfield, keyboardist Ben Greenspan and bassist Lindsey Starr. This song features Mansfield detailing a story of being kicked out of home by his father and breaking out on his own.
  • Fellow Seattle resident Macklemore jumps in after the second chorus, spitting rhymes about fame and fortune. They include a play on words on a famous Bruce Springsteen tune as he raps about being "blinded by this limelight."

    Macklemore wrote one of his verses in December 2013 while he was on a short break following his and Ryan's breakout success. "I think a lot of it is still relevant because I wrote the second verse later," he told MTV News. "I think a lot of it is still there, it might be for a while."
  • Macklemore's music partner, Ryan Lewis, contributed production for the tune. Once the Seattle rapper was added to the track, Mansfield told Billboard magazine Lewis was the obvious choice to tweak the knobs: "He was by far the best person to wrap it up and put the bow on it."
  • Macklemore and Christopher Mansfield are good buddies - the latter earned a co-writing credit on the Heist track "10,000 Hours." "Fences is a good friend," Macklemore told Billboard magazine. "He's fu---d up in the same way that I'm fu---d up. Because of that, our lives relate beyond the music."

    "I've always admired his talent for illustrating with words and evoking imagery, the rapper added. "We've made a bunch of stuff together over the years and this here song about Arrows is my favorite one we've done."
  • Mansfield told MTV News that he "almost cried" after hearing Macklemore's verses for the first time. "I was really nervous," he said. "And I put my computer by my window in Brooklyn and I lit a cigarette and I listened all nervous, and I was like, 'Oh my god' - I almost cried. It was so good because he said a lot of things, powerful stuff."
Please sign in or register to post comments.


Be the first to comment...

Rick SpringfieldSongwriter Interviews

Rick has a surprising dark side, a strong feminine side and, in a certain TV show, a naked backside. But he still hasn't found Jessie's Girl.

Bob DaisleySongwriter Interviews

Bob was the bass player and lyricist for the first two Ozzy Osbourne albums. Here's how he wrote songs like "Crazy Train" and "Mr. Crowley" with Ozzy and Randy Rhoads.

Who's Johnny, And Why Does He Show Up In So Many SongsSong Writing

For songwriters, Johnny represents the American man. He has been angry, cool, magic, a rebel and, of course, marching home.

Dean Friedman - "Ariel"They're Playing My Song

Dean's saga began with "Ariel," a song about falling in love with a Jewish girl from New Jersey.

Christmas SongsFact or Fiction

Rudolf, Bob Dylan and the Singing Dogs all show up in this Fact or Fiction for seasonal favorites.

Verdine White of Earth, Wind & FireSongwriter Interviews

The longtime bassist of Earth, Wind & Fire discusses how his band came to do a holiday album, and offers insight into some of the greatest dance/soul tunes of all-time.