Who I Am Hates Who I've Been

Album: MMHMM (2005)
Charted: 58
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • "Who I Am Hates Who I've Been," written by lead singer Matt Thiessen, is one of Relient K's most popular songs. Unlike their earlier humor-laced work, it's a much more serious, reflective piece.

    In our interview, he explained that the song was written about a particular incident. Said Thiessen: " That song was about a very specific episode that happened between me and my bass player. And it's one of those mistakes. Sometimes I say things to people, I guess, with the intention of hurting their feelings or something like that. And it was something I've been working really hard at, just trying to be a nice guy and stuff. So it was just one of those moments where I was pretty bummed at myself for being a jerk. And so yeah, it's kind of like that song sums up all those times in our life, where we're like, we wish we could take something back, we wish we didn't just cross the line like we did."
  • The lyrics are written as an apologetic lament. The narrator bemoans the misdeeds he's done in the past, while at the same time separating himself from them. Those were things he's done, but they aren't things he'd do again. Regret is the line that separates himself from who he's been, and will push him forward into becoming somebody better.
  • The album MMHMM was more lyrically mature and musically complex than the band's previous lighthearted, upbeat efforts. The risk paid off, however, with the band's two biggest hits: "Who I Am Hates Who I've Been" and "Be My Escape."
  • It was nominated for the 2006 Rock Recorded Song of the Year Dove Award.

Comments

Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Tom Bailey of Thompson Twins

Tom Bailey of Thompson TwinsSongwriter Interviews

Tom stopped performing Thompson Twins songs in 1987, in part because of their personal nature: "Hold Me Now" came after an argument with his bandmate/girlfriend Alannah Currie.

Don Dokken

Don DokkenSongwriter Interviews

Dokken frontman Don Dokken explains what broke up the band at the height of their success in the late '80s, and talks about the botched surgery that paralyzed his right arm.

Yacht Rock!

Yacht Rock!Song Writing

A scholarly analysis of yacht rock favorites ("Steal Away," "Baker Street"...) with a member of the leading YR cover band.

George Clinton

George ClintonSongwriter Interviews

When you free your mind, your ass may follow, but you have to make sure someone else doesn't program it while it's wide open.

Richard Marx

Richard MarxSongwriter Interviews

Richard explains how Joe Walsh kickstarted his career, and why he chose Hazard, Nebraska for a hit.

Randy Newman

Randy NewmanSongwriting Legends

Newman makes it look easy these days, but in this 1974 interview, he reveals the paranoia and pressures that made him yearn for his old 9-5 job.