What was I singing?! Eiffel 65’s Blue (Da Ba Dee)

Ever wonder if songs you were singing at a young age were completely age-inappropriate? They were! This column is a trip down memory lane that will have you asking, “Why was I singing this at such a young age? What do these lyrics even mean? Where were my parents?!” 

No, but really, what was this song?

It’s fun to imagine party goers at Brown in the late 90s going crazy when this one song came on the speaker — or whatever they used back then to blast music through the halls of Keeney.

This mostly unintelligible song was released in 1998, and I remember it was on my copy of Now That’s What I Call Music 4. Other tracks included Macy Gray’s “I Try,” Blink 182’s “All the Small Things,” and Jennifer Lopez’s “Waiting for Tonight.” What a playlist.

Below is an attempt at interpreting the song, though it will forever remain a puzzle.

Yo listen up here’s a story
About a little guy that lives in a blue world
And all day and all night and everything he sees
Is just blue like him inside and outside

At first, Eiffel 65 offers to engage us in a simple narrative. For the longest time, I thought this song was the life story of a Smurf.

This imaginary man, whether Smurf or human, is legitimately dealing with either an extreme bout of sadness or a rare form of colorblindness where everything is just monochromatic. Perhaps he just really liked the color blue, or he was simply the inspiration for James Cameron’s Avatar.

Blue his house with a blue little window
And a blue Corvette
And everything is blue for him and himself
And everybody around
‘Cause he ain’t got nobody to listen to

Blue man, let’s call him Roger, seems to be financially stable, what with owning a home and a pretty nice car. I think the saddest part about this section is that he doesn’t have anyone to listen to. He doesn’t even want to be heard or have someone to talk to! He just wants another presence in his life. Now, that’s sad.

I’m blue da ba dee da ba die…

Ah, the iconic babble. You can literally sing anything while this song blares, and it will eventually make you think that what you’re singing is right. The chorus is hypnotic and meaningless.

I have a blue house with a blue window.
Blue is the colour of all that I wear.
Blue are the streets and all the trees are too.
I have a girlfriend and she is so blue.

Woah, so point of view shift that no one saw coming. We’re immediately plunged into the first person POV of Roger, our blue little friend. Again, my guess is that he does in fact have a rare case of colorblindness. But, here’s the plot twist, he has a girlfriend!

Before, Eiffel 65 made us think he was living all alone, but now we learn that he’s in a romantic relationship. She is also blue, but whether she’s visually blue or just sad is the question. Perhaps she has just gone silent with sadness, and Roger wants someone new.

Blue are the people here that walk around,
Blue like my corvette, it’s in and outside.
Blue are the words I say and what I think.
Blue are the feelings that live inside me.

He now explicitly connects sadness with the color blue. The song goes on to sing the same things over again — his sad story and the hypnotic chorus. Roger, the blue man, is forever trapped in this word of monochromatic sadness.

It must have been a great song to jump and dance to in 1999. No one cared what the words said.

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