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Meaning of ‘West Coast’ by ‘Lana Del Rey’

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Released: 2014

“West Coast” by Lana Del Rey is an emotional journey, driven by the allure of the California lifestyle and a tumultuous love affair. The lyrics are a vibrant mix of seaside romance, personal angst, and the fascinating allure of the West Coast.

When we hear the lyrics, “Down on the West coast, they got a sayin’“, Lana paints a picture of local culture, where the laid-back lifestyle and partying are the norms. Often, drinking and playing are seen as the only way to fit in. However, she differentiates herself with the line “You’ve got the music“, suggesting her reliance on her creativity, rather than drinking, to find her place.

Lana also brings forward the element of romantic tension with lyrics like “You for the moment, Boy Blue, yeah you“. She affectionately names her love interest ‘Boy Blue,’ a term that speaks to his charm but also hints at a melancholic undertone. Yet, she is torn between her feelings and the need for personal freedom, shown when she sings, “You’re fallin’ hard, I push away, I’m feelin’ hot to the touch“.

The chorus, “I can see my baby swingin’“, is all about that pure, intoxicating love that Lana feels. The phrase ‘His Parliament’s on fire and his hands are up‘ is a vivid image of her lover, carefree, living in the moment, maybe even holding a burning cigarette, a popular brand known as Parliament. The repetition of “I’m in love” shows her deep infatuation and acceptance of these feelings.

Finally, Lana sings about the glitz and glamor of the West Coast, where they have their “icons, silver starlets, Queens of Saigons, golden gods, and Rock n’ Roll groupies“. These lines subtly suggest the superficiality and fleetingness of fame while underscoring the allure it holds for many.

So, in “West Coast”, Lana Del Rey delivers a mesmerizing ode to a place she’s drawn to, entwined in a love story both bitter and sweet. Her song is a testament to the intoxicating pull of love and the lifestyle of the West Coast.

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