Stay Awake

Album: Settle Down (2011)
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • Fairport, New York native Julia Nunes started writing songs at the age of 13 when she was in a Ska band. The Portuguese-American troubadour became well known for her videos of both original songs and covers on YouTube in which she sings harmony with herself and plays acoustic instruments. Nunes opened four times for one of her idols, Ben Folds, in May 2008 at the piano player's request after she posted one of her covers of his songs on the net. She made her television debut on January 24, 2012 performing this song on Conan.
  • Nunes told American Songwriter why she is especially proud of this song. She explained that it is, "my anthem for all the people who stay up late for absolutely no reason, but during the hours of 1:00am and 5:00am everything they're doing seems really important. If California Girls and American Idiots get anthems, voluntary insomniacs should too. So I'm especially proud to have written one."

Comments: 2

  • Jim from Morgantown, WvI'm just so excited to see Julia Nunes on Songfacts!!! Her voice is so pure and her songs and videos are wonderful. I hope this doesn't sound sexist but her eyes just pierce their way into my soul.
  • George from Salt Lake City, UtStay Awake speaks to me about the human experience of isolation much more deeply than just voluntary insomnia. We get so turned around in our priorities. Weather it is caught in the trance of being a work-a-holic, or other addiction or whatever it is that separates us from connecting with the people that we love. And there is Julia, making the Buddhist plea to wake up or stay awake to what really matters in life. Go now; sleep well, dream deeply and awake anew. "We are such stuff as dreams are made on; and our little life is rounded with a sleep."
    g
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Pete Anderson

Pete AndersonSongwriter Interviews

Pete produced Dwight Yoakam, Michelle Shocked, Meat Puppets, and a very memorable track for Roy Orbison.

Graduation Songs

Graduation SongsFact or Fiction

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

Jon Anderson of Yes

Jon Anderson of YesSongwriter Interviews

From the lake in "Roundabout" to Sister Bluebird in "Starship Trooper," Jon Anderson talks about how nature and spirituality play into his lyrics for Yes.

Guy Clark

Guy ClarkSongwriter Interviews

Vince Gill, Emmylou Harris and Lyle Lovett are just a few of the artists who have looked to Clark for insightful, intelligent songs.

Michael Glabicki of Rusted Root

Michael Glabicki of Rusted RootSongwriter Interviews

Michael tells the story of "Send Me On My Way," and explains why some of the words in the song don't have a literal meaning.

Elton John

Elton JohnFact or Fiction

Does he have beef with Gaga? Is he Sean Lennon's godfather? See if you can tell fact from fiction in the Elton John edition.