What does "Lie" by NF mean?
“Lie” Lyrics Meaning
(The following blog post is a transcript created by Xalma of the below video.)
If you’ve listened to NF for a while, you’d probably know that his most favourite topic to rap about is depression; and he does a pretty good job at it; but wait, there is more, in this song he is going to talk about somebody who broke his heart, and now she wants to come back?!
So this is a part of a series that we have on NF, and today we are going to be talking about “Lie” from his album Perception. Usually NF talks about depression, anxiety, being trapped by your mind, and stuff like that a lot, especially with an album like Therapy Session, where he really dives into basically a therapy session; and in the album Perception, it sounds like he’s trying to observe the way he sees things, and in case of this song, he’s talking about a relationship with a girl that didn’t work out well, because according to him, she wasn’t a good person.
I heard you told your friends that I'm just not your type
If that's how you really feel, then why'd you call last night?
You say all I ever do is just control your life
But how you gonna lie like that, how you gonna lie like that?
Now keep in mind that we have no actual proof of who this person is, and we don’t even know that it’s from a relationship that NF was actually in; there is no confirmation, he could have just made this story completely for all we know; I am not saying necessarily that this is what he did, but if it is a real person, then it’s probably someone from his past, because he recently just got married, so the timeline wouldn’t have really linked up, because he’s actually married and this relationship have worked out; but basically he’s accusing this girl of hypocrisy, so she wants to talk to him, but she’s telling her friends that he’s not her type; but at the same time, she’s actually accusing him of doing some really bad things, like being controlling, and then he’s accusing her thus of lying. We’re just into the first stanza, the chorus, and we’re off to a rocky start regarding this relationship; so let’s see what we have in the first verse,
Yeah, I heard you said I ain't the type for you
I don't regret it though, I learned from it
They should have you locked up for all the time you stole from us, (woo)
Took you out when I had no money
Only person that you ever cared about was you, that's why it's so funny
I think that this is some really clever word play there, she did steal time from them as a couple, and she stole time and energy from him as a person; he sacrificed, even when he felt that he had nothing to sacrifice; but in the end, it still was just about her.
You want somebody that'll keep you warm at night, then, tell me, why you actin' cold to me?
You ain't the only one to blame, no, I'm the one that made you rich when I bought every lie you sold to me
That’s definitely the cleverest line in the entire song; it’s basically her trying to get him to give, and her not giving anything back, and thus it’s an unequal and infeasible relationship,
Yeah, heard you threw away the pictures
But you still got the memories of us, so I guess I don't really make a difference
Flippin' through 'em in your head
Got you texting me all hours of the night
Yeah, you told me that you needed distance
So even though she told him that, she still keeps coming back; because for some reason, she needs what he’s been giving her; and it doesn’t sound like a healthy thing,
What's the deal with you?
You say you want a man that keeps it real
Then why you mad when I get real with you?
When he confronts her, she don’t like it; and he come to a resolution in these next lines,
You want someone to pay the bills for you
Went from feelin' you, now I feel for you, liar
He also adds to this point in the second verse,
Look, let me guess, you want to stay friends?
Tellin' people that's how we been?
Tellin' everybody, yeah, that we was barely speakin'
Ah, that's kinda funny, why'd you call me every day then?
It's immaturity, you goin' off the deep end
You just want somebody you can chill and get some drinks with, cool
Then don't hit me on the weekend, tellin' me you missed the way we talked and how I listen, yeah
So he is basically asking her to just be one person or the other; so break up and leave him alone, or actually try to make this relationship works; but something tells me that if she actually wanted to try at this point, she’d probably be too late,
Told me, "We should let it go and put it all behind us"
That's what I did, now you askin' me what I done, I was
Waitin' for this day, I saw it comin'
I think you just like attention, tryna tell me all your problems
I got issues of my own, I ain't got time for all this drama
You told me that you don't really wanna talk—then why you callin', huh?
His emotional need aren’t being met; she keeps coming back to him, and probably the reason she goes to him is because he’ll listen to her, he’s just a nice dude; and so she tries to get help from him, but she never helps him, nor does she ever give him anything back; this relationship is completely lopsided, and it’s done.
This song is unique for NF, because unlike a lot of his other faster, angrier, and more energetic raps; this one is slower, softer, and gentler, and it feels a little bit more vulnerable; you can feel a lot of the pain from him, coming from a softer, more thought-through place, as the anger is not always as thought-through like this one, anger feels more visceral.
So, this was NF’s “Lie”, about a lying ex girlfriend, and an unhealthy relationship that has thankfully ended; and we might not know if it was a real story or not, but it is so well-written that people who have been in a similar situation can relate to it a lot.
This is a part of a series on NF, so stay tuned for few other NF song explanations. Speaking of NF, if you guys want to write lyrics like him, there is a new course that just went live on the first of April, "How to Write Lyrics Like NF", you can check sign up in the link below: