Through the Ghost

Album: Amaryllis (2012)

Songfacts®:

  • This haunting song finds Brent Smith looking at himself in the mirror and not recognizing who he sees. Drummer Barry Kerch told Alternative Addiction: "It's about looking through the haze and getting things clear and again it's autobiographical from Brent. He couldn't see things clearly from the haze of booze, pills or whatever but now he's come through all that."
  • A heavily orchestrated song without any normal drums, it was decided that rather than getting Barry Kerch to play the kettle drums the band would sample them. He explained to Alternative Addiction: "I could have done it because I have played them before but it's fairly tough to play timpani. We could have hired someone to play it, but it would have been difficult to keep it in tune and we didn't have the time. We did the same with the upright chimes; it would have taken too long for us to do them and it would've cost too much. We would never have got the correct overtones and there would have been far too many variables."
  • Brent Smith told Artist Direct that when he wrote this autobiographical song, he was talking about a specific day in his life. "I woke up, and I didn't recognize myself anymore," he said "I had really let myself go physically and mentally. I had just hit a very rough place in my life."

    "My girlfriend, who is a huge part of my life, " Smith continued, "picked me up and said something to me that changed everything. She was like, "Listen to me, I love you and I respect you. You have a lot of people around you that love you too, but you are letting yourself go down". The way she put it is was like this - I am a lot more focused, a lot healthier, and a lot more dangerous when I am clear-headed. She basically said, 'It's time for you to get dangerous again. Get your head out of your ass, pick yourself up, get motivated, get healthy, get your life back, and be the man everybody knows you can be.'"

    "'Through the Ghost' was a reflection of that," Smith concluded. "It's like, 'The world will never know you like I do.' It's like talking to yourself in the mirror. Personally, I don't think the world will know me like I know myself because I live with me day in and day out. Psychologically, I go through a lot of things. We're not all perfect, and it's not going to be roses all the time. You have to find a way to balance your life."

Comments: 1

  • Zero from The Abyss, NjKinda reminds me of Disarm by the Smashing Pumpkins.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Band NamesFact or Fiction

Was "Pearl" Eddie Vedder's grandmother, and did she really make a hallucinogenic jam? Did Journey have a contest to name the group? And what does KISS stand for anyway?

The Untold Story Of Fiona Apple's Extraordinary MachineSong Writing

Fiona's highly-anticipated third album almost didn't make it. Here's how it finally came together after two years and a leak.

Stand By Me: The Perfect Song-Movie CombinationSong Writing

In 1986, a Stephen King novella was made into a movie, with a classic song serving as title, soundtrack and tone.

Phone Booth SongsSong Writing

Phone booths are nearly extinct, but they provided storylines for some of the most profound songs of the pre-cell phone era.

Boy BandsFact or Fiction

From NKOTB to 1D, how well do you know your boy bands?

The Evolution of "Ophelia"Song Writing

How four songs portray Shakespeare's character Ophelia.