Spin Doctors – “Two Princes” Lyrics Meaning

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Written By Joanna Landrum

Joanna holds a BSc in English Literature and uses her expertise in literary analysis to uncover the deeper meaning of her favorite songs.

Cracking the code of Spin Doctors’ “Two Princes,” we find a song about choice and authenticity. It weaves a tale of two suitors vying for the same woman’s heart, but the underlying message is far deeper. The songwriter calls out the superficiality of wealth and status and emphasizes the importance of genuine love and personal connection. It’s a song about daring to choose the unconventional path, the one less adorned with riches but rich in character. The “princes” aren’t specific individuals; they represent contrasting lifestyles, and the songwriter’s plea is for his beloved to see beyond the glitz and find the true value in a partner.

Tempted to know why one prince has “diamonds in his pockets” while the other offers a love so potent that it’ll make your “father eat his hat”? Dive in with us as we journey through the lyrical labyrinth of “Two Princes.”

“Two Princes” Lyrics Meaning

As the song kicks off with “One, two princes kneel before you,” we’re introduced to the dichotomy of the two suitors. One prince is wealthy – he’s got “diamonds in his pockets.” Yet, there’s an air of materialism that surrounds him. He’s the symbol of societal expectations and conventional success.

On the other hand, the second prince seems to have a less impressive facade. He’s got no diamonds or rockets, but he does have an irresistible charm – a “princely racket.” This prince isn’t about monetary wealth but emotional richness.

A pivotal moment is the songwriter’s admission that “you marry him, your father will condone you… you marry me, your father will disown you.” This line shines a light on societal pressures that influence personal choices. Marrying the first prince may guarantee societal approval and security, while choosing the second might lead to judgment and possibly even isolation.

The chorus echoes the underlying message of the song: the worth of a person isn’t determined by their wealth, status, or the approval of others. “I’m the one that loved you baby can’t you see? Ain’t got no future or family tree, but I know what a prince and lover ought to be.” The songwriter is asking his beloved to see past societal expectations, to value authentic love over materialistic allure.

The lyrics conclude with repeated requests: “If you want to call me baby, just go ahead now” and “If you want to buy me flowers, just go ahead now.” It’s an invitation for the woman to take a chance, to step away from societal pressures and make her own decision based on love and authenticity.

The Story Behind “Two Princes”

The Spin Doctors’ lead vocalist, Chris Barron, has often said that the song was inspired by his own experiences and observations. While he didn’t directly identify two real-life princes, the song captures a universal situation where a person is torn between choosing what society dictates and following one’s heart.

When he wrote the song, Barron was grappling with the band’s rise to fame. He saw how success could change relationships and personal dynamics. This might have sparked the narrative of “Two Princes,” a song that boldly declares the value of authentic love over wealth and societal expectations. The seemingly lighthearted tune harbors a profound message, one that resonates with listeners, reminding them of the power of authenticity in a world often guided by superficiality.

Barron’s state of mind when he penned down the lyrics played a crucial role in crafting the song’s narrative. As fame started to take a toll on his life and relationships, he began observing the superficial nature of societal validation. He realized that wealth and success could often cloud judgments and overshadow personal feelings.

The lyric “you marry him, your father will condone you… you marry me, your father will disown you” further supports this. This line, a product of Barron’s societal observation, implies that personal happiness often takes a backseat to conform with societal norms. But Barron champions choosing the path less traveled – the path of authenticity, even if it means defying societal expectations.

In the song, Barron takes on the persona of the ‘second prince,’ the one who lacks the societal stamp of success but is rich in his ability to love and understand. This could be a metaphorical reflection of Barron’s own situation as he navigated the path of fame and success with his band.

“Two Princes” is, therefore, not just a catchy tune. It’s a mirror of society’s materialistic tendencies and the courage it takes to defy these norms. It encourages listeners to be authentic and value genuine connection over superficiality. Through the guise of a vibrant pop-rock number, the song delivers a potent message about life, love, and the courage to follow one’s heart.

The song’s enduring popularity since its release in 1991 is a testament to its timeless message. It continues to resonate with listeners who find themselves at the crossroads of choosing between societal expectations and personal happiness. It’s a reminder that true value lies in authenticity, and sometimes the ‘prince’ with the ‘diamonds in his pockets’ may not be the one who brings true happiness.

In conclusion, “Two Princes” is a lyrical journey that underscores the importance of authenticity and love. It reminds us to be true to ourselves and to make choices that resonate with our hearts, even in the face of societal pressures. The true ‘prince’ is one who loves unconditionally and values emotional connection over material wealth, a message that remains timeless and relevant.