Mike Rosenberg is a British singer-songwriter who records under the name of Passenger. He explained this song's meaning to VH1: "As we get older, we become cynical as far as love goes. When you first fall in love at 15, it's the most wonderful and incredible thing. And then, inevitably, that probably doesn't work out as a relationship and your heart is broke and you don't know what to do."
Eddie Vedder often changes the words when he sings "Yellow Ledbetter." The basic story is about a guy whose brother dies in the first Gulf War. Apparently, bad news in the army is given in yellow envelopes.