Single Review: LeeAnn Rimes “Life Goes On”

Life Goes On
Album: Twisted Angel
Year: 2002

LeAnn Rimes moves on from past troubles with her father on the danceable “Life Goes On”

LeAnn Rimes’ voice, overprocessed but still clear, begins the song with the phrase “life goes on” which is repeated several times. (“life goes on, life goes on/life goes on, life goes on”).

She was manipulated by her father and treated more like a puppet than a daughter. (“You sucked me in/And played my mind/Just like a toy/You were crank and wind”). She would do everything he asked her to, leading her to not be confident about her talent. (”
Baby I would give till you wore it out/You left me lyin’ in a pool of doubt”). Her dad still believes what he did to her was right. However, she thinks he was the parent and should’ve been able to make the right decisions for her as a child. She can’t respect him for not acting like a responsible parent (“And you’re still thinkin’ you’re the Daddy Mac/You should’ve known better but you didn’t/and I can’t go back”).

However, it happened, it’s over and time to move on with her own life as Rimes explains in the chorus. The experience has given her a thick skin and she’s not the person she was several years ago. (“Oh life goes on/And it’s only gonna make me strong/It’s a fact, once you get on board/Say good-bye cause you can’t go back/Oh it’s a fight, and I really wanna get it right/Where I’m at, is my life before me/And this feelin’ that I can go back/life goes on”).

She was naive and didn’t see that her father was cheating her. Her father kept necessary information from her and then proceeded to use it against her for profit. (“Wish I knew then/What I know now/You held all the cards/And sold me out”). She doesn’t trust him anymore and thinks he will cheat her the same way again. She chides herself for believing him at all. But she can’t change the past. (“Baby shame on you, if you fool me once/Shame on me if you fool me twice/You’ve been a pretty hard case to crack/Should’ve known better but I didn’t/And I can’t go back”).

Rimes adlibs and summarizes the chorus for the filler section of the song. (“Na, na, na, na, na/Life goes on/Na, Na, Na, Na,/It made me strong/Oh yeah, got this feeling that I can’t go back”). She then repeats the second verse. Then, it’s adlib and summarize again to close the single.

Rimes is authorative and commanding in her vocals. She has a versatile voice and is able to fit into current pop genre with ease. While “Tic Toc” was a misstep, “Life Goes On” has an appealing universal theme. Although she doesn’t name her father, it’s obvious she’s speaking to him.

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