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Theme from the TV Show “Friends”: “I’ll Be There For You”

From your blog comments, it looks like we have a lot of listeners/readers who are fans of the TV show Friends. We also recently had a question about some of the lyrics to the theme song (song that a show or person is known by), so I thought I would post them here with some explanations. For those of you who are not fans of the show, this is still a well-known song in the U.S. and I hope you enjoy it.

~ Lucy

“I’ll Be There For You”
by The Rembrandts

So no one told you life was gonna (going to) be this way
Your job’s a joke (not good; not adequate), you’re broke (have no money), your love life’s D.O.A (dead on arrival; not lively).

It’s like you’re always stuck in second gear (wheels in your car moving slowly)
And it hasn’t been your day, your week, your month,
or even your year
*, but…

I’ll be there for you (you can rely on me)
When the rain starts to pour (to fall heavily)
I’ll be there for you
Like I’ve been there before
I’ll be there for you
‘Cuz (because) you’re there for me too…

You’re still in bed at ten
And work began at eight
You’ve burned (cooked too long) your breakfast
So far…things are going great

Your mother warned (told you something would happen beforehand) you there’d be days like these
Oh, but she didn’t tell you when the world has brought
You down to your knees** that…

I’ll be there for you
When the rain starts to pour
I’ll be there for you
Like I’ve been there before
I’ll be there for you
‘Cuz you’re there for me too…

No one could ever know me
No one could ever see me
Seems you’re the only one who knows
What it’s like to be me
Someone to face the day with
Make it through (to successfully pass through an event although it is difficult) all the rest with
Someone I’ll always laugh with
Even at my worst I’m best with you, yeah

It’s like you’re always stuck in second gear
And it hasn’t been your day, your week, your month,
or even your year…

I’ll be there for you
When the rain starts to pour
I’ll be there for you
Like I’ve been there before
I’ll be there for you
‘Cuz you’re there for me too…

I’ll be there for you
I’ll be there for you
I’ll be there for you
‘Cuz you’re there for me too…

*to be (one’s) day = to have good things happen
**to be down to/on your knees = to feel hopeless or defeated

14 Responses to “Theme from the TV Show “Friends”: “I’ll Be There For You””

  1. Arnold Says:

    Some song! I’d love it. Though I’m not a big fan of the friends, this songs is just inspiring. Thank you for posting this.

  2. Arnold Says:

    Correcting:I’m not a big fan of Friends, not of “the” friends

  3. jason k. Says:

    i’m one of the friends!

  4. Eugene Says:

    A truly amaizing song….. What do they mean by “your love life’s D.O.A”? I understand what D.O.A. is, but I don’t get the “your love life’s” part.

  5. Carlos Caridad Says:

    I think it´s a good idea to reproduce the lyrics of some songs. I always have problems to understand them. You should think about to do it more often.

  6. Arnold Says:

    To Eugene:
    Your love life’s D.O.A. = Your love life is dead on arrival.

    Your love life means, literally, all your romantic relationships.

  7. Dr. Lucy Tse Says:

    Arnold is right, so when we talk about our love life, we are talking about the romantic relationships in our lives. In the song, “your love life’s D.O.A” means that your love life is not active, you don’t have a girlfriend or boyfriend, and you don’t go out on a lot of dates. In other words, this person has a dull (not exciting) love life.

    By the way, D.O.A. is a term originally used by doctors and nurses to describe patients (sick people) who are taken to the hospital who arrive already dead, and there is nothing else they can do for them. We now use this term more widely to mean that something isn’t working or is not active.

    ~ Lucy

  8. Eugene Says:

    Now it makes so much more sense… I guess “love” is given as an adjective here? What’s a little confusing about English is that one word can be an adjective, verb and noun depending on a context… But once u get it, u got it :-) Thank you for your explanation!!!

  9. shaaban Says:

    Thanks many thanks to Dr. Lucy Tse and Dr. Jeff . Wish to hear very Good about you together thanks

  10. Carla Says:

    Thank you so much!! I’m a big fan of Friends. And the lyrics have been confusing me for a long time. Really appreciate your explanations.

  11. &rey Says:

    I think that songs and the lirics of those song is the most interesting things that Jeff and Lusy post in the blog.
    Maybe i’m too informal calling our doctors just Lusy and Jeff but i’ve been listerning ESLPOD for about 8 months and i feel like they are my real friends.
    So… Thank you Dr. Lucy and Dr. Jeff.
    Recenly i’ve read a book by John Grisham “The Firm” – it was adapted version of the book. When i was reading a book i highlighted words and phrases that i had learned from ESLPOD. After I had read the book i looked thought it again and noticed that almost every page had highlited text.
    Well, back to “The Firm”. There was post where we talked about what movies are the best to watch to improve english. So i suggest to discuss what is the best to read?
    I do recommend you to read “The firm”, especcially the original version if you are advanced in english. I tryed to read the original but it took too much time for me to read several chapters. Though it was really pleasant.

  12. emiliano Says:

    Same as Carlos I think it is a very good idea to reproduce the Lyrics of some famous songs, but most even is to explain the meaning of them as you did Dr. Lucy. Thank you very much, as for us (not english speakers) sometimes is really very difficult to get up the meaning of them.
    This is truly a lovely song, I like it very much but may be a little sad?.

  13. asha Says:

    this is very good song .

  14. jm Says:

    It’s finally clear! I’m often watching Friends but the theme song was always a bit confusing to me,
    especially this D.O.A thing.

    Big thanks to Lucy for that and all the great work she does with Jeff for ESL podcast!