Song of the Day #389: ‘These Dreams’ – Heart

album-heart20 Best Songs of the 80s – #15

Of all the songs on this countdown, this is the one that seems the most ridiculous today in contrast to how cool and interesting I found it back in the day. I remember finding Nancy Wilson very attractive and getting that whole close-your-eyes-and-sway thing going on while contemplating the deep meaning of the music and lyrics.

Man, I was a tool.

Heart, known more as a rock band (see ‘Barracuda’), released this saccharine gem in 1986 and had their first #1 hit. It became a staple on MTV — how did we not laugh ourselves to tears at those hairdos? — and made the band a household name. It was also the first Heart song on which Nancy handled lead vocals, which must have pissed Ann off to no end.

The most interesting fact about ‘These Dreams,’ which I learned just in time to write this post, is that the lyrics were written by none other than Bernie Taupin. He also wrote ‘We Built This City’ for Starship. So I guess he needed Elton as much as Elton needed him!

Spare a little candle, save some light for me
Figures up ahead moving in the trees
White skin in linen, perfume on my wrist
And the full moon that hangs over
These dreams in the mist

Darkness on the edge, shadows where I stand
I search for the time on a watch with no hands
I want to see you clearly
Come closer to this, come closer to this
But all I remember are the dreams in the mist

These dreams go on when I close my eyes
Every second of the night, I live another life
These dreams that sleep when it’s cold outside
Every moment I’m awake, the further I’m away

Is it cloak and dagger, could it be Spring or Fall?
I walk without a cut through a stained-glass wall
Weaker in my eyesight, a candle in my grip
And words that have no form are falling from my lips

There’s something out there I can’t resist
I need to hide away from the pain
There’s something out there I can’t resist

The sweetest song is silence that I’ve ever heard
Funny how your feet in dreams never touch the Earth
In a wood full of princes, freedom is a kiss
But the prince hides his face from dreams in the mist

3 thoughts on “Song of the Day #389: ‘These Dreams’ – Heart

  1. Amy says:

    I LOVED this song, and I don’t concede that there’s anything ridiculous about it. Very cool that Taupin wrote the lyrics, though I never spent much time trying to interpret them. I just liked (and like) the way the whole song comes together.

    And, sure the hairstyles are nuts, but what does that have to do with the music? I think this song holds up perfectly well; I’m digging every second of it 🙂 Since I didn’t watch much MTV in college, I’m wondering how I first came across it. I think I owned the 45 – ha. I wonder which of the iTunes singles Maddie buys today she will most fondly remember 20+ years from now…

  2. Dana says:

    Taupin’s lyrics here are fine, but writing “We Built This City” is downright unforgivable.

    For a brief time in the late 80’s, I considered myself a Heart fan, not so much of their radio friendly hits like this, but more of the Dog and Butterfly, Barracuda staples from their earlier days. Of the MTV era, I was more a fan of the song “Never” from then, which was also a big hit.

  3. Kerrie Rueda says:

    Like Dana, I also preferred the song “Never,” and though I remember this vividly from my youth, it doesn’t scream “80s” to me the way the other songs in the countdown have so far. For me, this is just a song that happened to come out in the 80s rather than one truly exemplifying the era.

    The most signature 80s aspect of this entry for me IS the hair. There wasn’t a single rock band from the era (male or female) that didn’t sport this wicked style and that places the music in time for me in a more significant way than the actual song.

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