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ColdPlay Viva La Vida A Review

Updated on October 3, 2011

One of the world's greatest songs written, sang and produced by the group Coldplay hit the charts as a second single in 2008. With over two million hits currently on youtube the song Viva La Vida climbed the charts becoming Coldplay's first number one single in both the United States and the United Kingdom back in 2008. At the 51st Grammy awards in 2009 the song won song of the year. With over 5 million copies sold in the United States since 2008 and reaching over 4 million in paid downloads, the song became the second song ever sang by a British group to reach this historical milestone.

With over a million hits alone on multiple youtube videos, Viva La Vida continues to intrigue those who are trying to determine what the song itself is about. Arguments, shouting matches and removal of offensive words on makes a person wonder what the meaning of the song is. Sitting for multiple hours and listening to the song many times, I was curious and determined to figure the lyrics out. Looking up history of the lyrics, there isn't much that has been explained so here is my perspective on the meaning of the song.


When groups begin to rise to the top, they tend to forget where there roots actually began. They embrace the power of who they are as a star and look down on others, forgetting the people beneath them are the ones who supply there lavish lifestyle. Some believe they are a God and others manifest themselves into larger then life characters that many are mesmerized by. There are millions of followers who idolize the ground they walk.

Coldplay rose to the top, realizing they were missing something in their lives. Raised with the belief of God, deep inside the spirit was rattled. They realized that although they had fame and fortune they were lacking the love of God. When they rolled the dice, the took a walk on the Worldly side of life, which created havoc and destruction. When they spoke to friends and family, the people who were close to them were appalled by their actions and couldn't believe what they had became. They asked themselves who would want to become King? They heard God calling them (Jerusalem bells are ringing) asking him to protect them from anymore harm. Saint Peter would not call there name, but that was when they ruled the World.

Certain there are many other opinions on what the lyrics mean, I have provided the words for all to review, what do you believe the lyrics mean?

Viva La Vida Review

What an exemplary song carefully orchestrated and written from the heart. The lyrics read like poetry. Flowing perfectly among the masses and creating questions to millions about what the songs meaning really is. Performed, written and sang by an outstanding group known as Colplay. One could listen to this song over and over again, never growing tired of the instrumental orchestrated rhythm. Christopher Martin along with the group takes there song to an entirely new level. The song will never grow old and will be popular for years to come. Hats off to Coldplay for a song superbly written and performed.

What Do You Think About The Song Viva La Vida?

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Viva La Vida Lyrics

I used to rule the world
Seas would rise when I gave the word
Now in the morning I sleep alone
Sweep the streets I used to own

I used to roll the dice
Feel the fear in my enemy's eyes
Listen as the crowd would sing
"Now the old king is dead! Long live the king!"

One minute I held the key
Next the walls were closed on me
And I discovered that my castles stand
Upon pillars of salt and pillars of sand

I hear Jerusalem bells are ringing
Roman Cavalry choirs are singing
Be my mirror, my sword and shield
My missionaries in a foreign field

For some reason I can't explain
Once you go there was never
Never an honest word
And that was when I ruled the world

It was the wicked and wild wind
Blew down the doors to let me in
Shattered windows and the sound of drums
People couldn't believe what I'd become

Revolutionaries wait
For my head on a silver plate
Just a puppet on a lonely string
Oh who would ever want to be king?

I hear Jerusalem bells are ringing
Roman Cavalry choirs are singing
Be my mirror, my sword and shield
My missionaries in a foreign field

For some reason I can't explain
I know Saint Peter won't call my name
Never an honest word
But that was when I ruled the world

I hear Jerusalem bells are ringing
Roman Cavalry choirs are singing
Be my mirror, my sword and shield
My missionaries in a foreign field

For some reason I can't explain
I know Saint Peter won't call my name
Never an honest word
But that was when I ruled the world

Songwriters: Guy Berryman, Christopher A. Buckland, Will Champion and Jon Buckland

Viva La Vida Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Company

Credit to Lukas4video for his youtube lyrics


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    • AEvans profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

      miscellanea: They are amazing and thanks so much for stopping by! :)

    • miscellanea profile image

      Tarik Aarbaoui 

      6 years ago from Morocco

      I'm so much in Love with coldplay! thanks for your hub

    • AEvans profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

      Alastar Packer: They are a wonderful band! Chris Martin? What a wonderful tribute to REM. Everybody Hurts is a wonderful song. Thank you for commenting. :)

    • Alastar Packer profile image

      Alastar Packer 

      7 years ago from North Carolina

      Awesome breakdown on Coldplay and their relation to Viva La Vida AE. I wondered too like so many others exactly what the lyrics meant. They are a great band. First heard of them couple of years ago after hearing Clocks. BTW, Chris Martin gave a very fine tribute recently in Atlanta to REMs retirement by playing guitar and singing Everybody Hurts. Thank you for this enlightening article AE.

    • AEvans profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

      tobey100: What an exciting job you had! ColdPlay is one of the best groups of all time. Sometimes controversial but the music style and lyrics gives us a better understanding of who they are. I can appreciate talent when I hear them. :)

    • tobey100 profile image


      7 years ago from Whites Creek, Tennessee

      Gotta love Coldplay. I can listen to Life in Technicolor II a million times. Having been a lyricist for 20 years I love the unique way they put a tune together. great review. Don't know how I missed it.

    • AEvans profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

      Don Simkovich: Oh nice! I must check it out. I can play this song over and over. Wonderful song! Thank you for letting all of us know about it. Good to see you to. :)

    • Don Simkovich profile image

      Don Simkovich 

      7 years ago from Pasadena, CA

      There's a fun live version of this song on YouTube. Type Coldplay Viva BBC. It takes place outside the BBC studios.

    • AEvans profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

      daniellehorgan: Coldplay is one of my favorite all time artists too. I truly enjoy the song and there are so many different understandings of what they are really trying to say. Thanks for the kudos! :)

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      This is a great review. Coldplay are my favourite band ever and it's great to see all of the comments above! Voted up and interesting

    • AEvans profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

      Winsome: It is an awesome song! I could hear it over and over and over again. But it also can have so many meanings. I enjoy what others have to say about this one. :)I will be waiting. :)

    • Winsome profile image


      7 years ago from Southern California by way of Texas

      Thank you for this fine article. You have inspired me to read up on this and it is taking me into many roads and alleys. I will be back to report and comment properly. =:)

    • AEvans profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

      Cardisa: That is my opinion too. It is a very deep song that has so much meaning. :)

      Alecia Murphy: It is my favorite song from Coldplay. I listened to it over and over again. it is very uplifting too. The historical references are wonderful, I agree with you on that too! :)

    • Alecia Murphy profile image

      Alecia Murphy 

      7 years ago from Wilmington, North Carolina

      I love this song. It's probably one of my favorite Coldplay songs because it's not what they typically talk about (i.e., love and heartache). I love the historical references as well, it shows that pop music can be intelligent and insightful. Great Hub!

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 

      7 years ago from Jamaica

      I think it's simply comparing their rise to fame and them finding some sort of faith in God. At least that's my opinion.

    • AEvans profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

      Dexter: You are a blessing and I am glad you enjoyed the hub. Coldplay does certainly have an impact on the music industry. I enjoy a genre' of music and they are one of my favorites.I am picky about groups too. lololo! :D Thanks for the vote. :)

    • Dexter Yarbrough profile image

      Dexter Yarbrough 

      7 years ago from United States

      Hi AEvans! I like the lyrics and the group. They have certainly had a great impact on the music industry. Thanks for providing more information in an outstanding hub.

      Voted up, up and away!

    • AEvans profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

      lord de cross: It is a nice song and I also love your opinion on the song too. Coldplay has always had a way with constructing their words s we both know and this particular song has so many variations of what it means. I love the song and can still listen to it over and over again. :)

    • Lord De Cross profile image

      Joseph De Cross 

      7 years ago from New York

      Born in a Catholic environment I believe this song contains many biblical references. Chris Martin, the lead singer graduated from University college London majoring in Ancient World Studies. The title song,"viva la vida" is spanish for "long live life". Basically the lyrics speak of a King that fell, which subtly juxtapose the lives of Louis XVI, William the Conqueror and other Nordic Kings. The beheaded person is a clear reference to John the Baptist. In order to make the song appealing they introduce very typical sounds with a timpani and a church bell. If you see the title: Viva la vida, you see a clear asymetric wording that confronts the second title: "Death and all his friends". On one side the title rejoice with Life...and on the other side is an opposite paradoxical title. Saint Peter refers to the judgement of our terrenal existence on his book of life. Chris Martin made that reference due to his fascination with damnity. The lyrics are well constructed and I think is a beautiful song...that will last until the end of times. Nice hub Sis! Voted up


    • AEvans profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

      RNMSN: I love Coldplay and I believe the lyrics represent their beliefs. I am glad you agree with me. :)

      Extinct Soul: They are very deep and this song has been one that many are trying to figure out. I love the song and for years to come it will be a song of interest. :)

    • Extinct Soul profile image

      Extinct Soul 

      7 years ago from 14°35'N 121°0'E

      I love Coldplay, and I would hate anyone that would put their name to just joking!

      Coldplay was very deep when it come to making song lyrics, and this particular song had some deep part as the Mariana trench. :) I have read a lot of interpretation of this song, and yours was the best! ;) kudos!

    • RNMSN profile image

      Barbara Bethard 

      7 years ago from Tucson, Az

      my daughter introduced ColdPlay to me years ago...well that is said loosely you understand as escape was not an option and the sound was defeaning but still...

      this one katie and I have discussed ad nauseum as to its, thank you A!! I/ YES/ will win this argument...uh...discussion :)

      thank you AEvans!!

      note: I checked my spelling this time :)and dadgumit look it appeared instantly!! whats up?


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