Lonely Dreamer

Album: Grey Ghost (1979)
Charted: 107
  • songfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • Henry Paul loves to write from the standpoint of the high expectations that women have of love, and their unwillingness to settle for anything less. And that, says Paul, is what this song is all about. "Women try and hold a little bit of a higher standard, as a group. They have this lofty look at love, and they try and hold the line a lot of times, and when they don't get what they really want, they let you know about it. And love for a woman is about cards and movies, with romance and all that. Women are very complex critters when it comes to love. I thought I had it figured out; I found out I did not have it figured out. But I do have a leg up on the competition, because most men are just completely clueless dolts, and they couldn't appreciate a woman's perspective if the heavens opened up and God hit them over the head with it. But the 'Lonely Dreamer' person is just that; she's between relationships and she's lonely, but she wants to be touched. She's a dreamer, and she's got standards, and she's kind of paying the price for her high-falutin' idea of what love is, but it's okay, because when she gets to the other side it'll be there, and it'll be what she wants. And I've always kind of liked that theme as a song storyline. I've always liked to cast women especially in the role of unwilling-to-compromise roles. Women attach themselves to losers, and they're abused, and they can't get out and they don't know why. They can be pathetic in what they allow themselves to be involved in. On the other hand, they can be, from an integrity standpoint, a really high-standard benchmark. And depending, I think, on how much self-esteem a girl has, that dictates what they'll take. If they really think a lot of themselves and have respect for themselves, they won't take a lot of bull. And if they don't think they really measure up in ways, then they're willing to take that beating. So it's a subjective situation. But I love to write songs from the standpoint of high expectation and unwillingness to settle. That's one of my favorite themes."
  • As a songwriter, Paul likes to paint pictures with his words. This song was one that he wrote while visualizing a painting of a girl with the words "Lonely Dreamer" underneath: "It's like a portrait title. I could just see a Monet or a Manet or Cezanne with a girl holding her hat looking down and seeing a title called 'Lonely Dreamer.' And it's like they dream of something better, but they don't have really all that much, and so it's kind of like they're caught between being unhappy and optimistic. It's like being caught between optimism and pessimism, and never giving up on a dream, but never being in a certain specific situation that satisfies that sort of quest."
  • The musical style that is a Henry Paul signature is upbeat. He likes to write music that will have a live audience dancing in their seats. Paul says, "That's that same musical characteristic of mine that I pull out. It's all about tempo and upbeat. I like songs that I know are going to help me out on stage as a performer. I don't write just the morose sort of droning ballad of despair, because I know that they don't get me anywhere. I usually write almost from the end game. Oftentimes I do that. Now, there's times where you can't, where you have to give in to a musical moment that is not necessarily frantic. But I do like to arm myself with music that can help me in the live arena, because people didn't spend good money to come out and be depressed. They want to have fun. And even though 'Lonely Dreamer' is sort of a sad subject matter, it's a really upbeat musical moment. I can stand up on stage and see you dancing to it. And that's why we do what we do." (Check out our interview with Henry Paul. For more, go to www.blackhawkmusic.us.)
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