In the wee hours of Sunday morning, shortly after Sanna Nielsen had won Melodifestivalen 2014, a Norwegian friend came up to me on the dance floor at WONK. Looking rather embarrassed, he had a big question on his mind: “What does ‘undo my sad’ mean?” I’m a native English speaker and I DO NOT KNOW. I love Sanna and her song “Undo”, so I decided to re-read her lyrics. Now I’m even more confused. Perhaps Sanna needs to undo these lyrics…

During the semi-final we assumed that Sanna was singing “undo my self.” But no. She’s singing “Undo my sad”. That may be an attempt at poetry, but it sounds kind of strange because you can undo “sadness”, but you cannot undo “sad.” Just to be sure we consulted our dictionary and now we are worried that Sanna is trying to tell us something darker and deeper.

SAD (seasonal affective disorder) is actually a condition in which people who have normal mental health throughout the year experience depressive symptoms in either winter or summer. Among other symptons, people with SAD struggle to wake up in the morning, have a tendency to overeat and oversleep, and experience nausea. As we know from several medical texts, this condition is most common in the Nordic countries.

Among the therapeutic treatments are sitting next to colorful lamps for 15 minutes each morning. Did y’all notice the stage lights during Sanna’s performance? It was rul, rul bright. Here’s a photo Wiwi took during Sanna’s rehearsal:

sanna sanna nielsen light 

Is Sanna struggling to make it through the Swedish winter? Is this song her cry for help? Will SVT pay for her to “undo her sad” by Eurovision?

Read the lyrics below and let us know what you think!

(Note: We’re just kidding. Sanna obviously does not have a mental disorder!)

Undo lyrics / text

Silent I can’t wait here silent
Working up a storm inside my he..ad
Nothing I just stood for nothing
So I fell for every thing you sa…id
He..e.ar the ru..u.mble
Hear my..y voice
Silent I can’t wait here silent
Gotta make a change
And make some noi..se

U..u..u..ndo my..y sad
U..u..u..ndo what hurts so bad
U..u..u..ndo my..y pain
Gonna get out, through the rain
I know that I am over you
At last I know what I should do
U..u..u..ndo my sa…..a………d

Trouble baby I’m in trouble
Every time I look into your eyes
Save me
Oh I’m gonna save me
Faraway from all the crazy li..es
He..e.ar the ru..u.mble
Hear my vo…ice

U..u..u..ndo my..y sad
U..u..u..ndo what hurts so bad
U..u..u..ndo my pain
Gonna get out, through the rain
I know that I am over you
At last I know what I should do

U..u..u..ndo my sa….a……..d
U..u..u..ndo my sad
U..u..u..ndo what hurts so bad
U..u..u..ndo my pain
Gonna get out, through the rain
I know that I am over you
At last I know what I should do

U..u..u..ndo my sa….a……..d
I sa..a..id
U….ndo……

Related posts

Vebooboo Nadella contributed this report from Stockholm. You can also keep up-to-date with the latest Eurovision news and gossip by following the team on Twitter @wiwibloggs and by liking our Facebook page.

Graphic: CINAN

Photos: Courtesty of SVT

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Kolla
Guest

I thought she said “undo what I said”

Rodrigo Couto
Guest

Since she needed to change the lyrics, in my opinion she could say, “undo, cos I’m sad” instead of “undo my sad”. What is undone becomes perfectly clear after.

Bob
Guest

The melody remember me another melody of another song familiar to me, but I don’t remember it. If someone know a melody similar to this can he tell to me please ? Thanks !

Koka
Guest

The song name and lyrics really give me a familiar feeling that the meaning of the song is quite similar to “Unbreak My Heart” by Toni Braxton in 1996, though the words and melodies are totally different. I believe it may be the starting point for the songwriters of “Undo” that based on.

Mr know it all
Guest

Fun to read your comments. But i have all the answers you are looking for.

The original lyrics was: undo my self… But after she won in Sweden they changera it and now it is: undo my sad life…

But in a couple of places in the song the Word life doesnt fit so she just sings: undo my sad…

So there you go. 🙂

Alwin
Guest

I wondered why she was feeling so sadness. But it was because of her sad! LOL great article. Greetings from Holland!

Michael Murray
Guest
Here are the complete lyrics. I understood all of it, and I am not even from Sweden. SWEDEN | SANNA NIELSEN “Undo” LYRICS Silent, I can’t wait here silent Working up a storm inside my head Nothing, I just stood for nothing So I fell for everything you said Hear the rumble Hear my voice Silent, I can’t wait here silent Gotta make a change And make some noise Undo my sad Undo what hurts so bad Undo my pain Gotta get out, through the rain I know that I am over you At last, I know what I should… Read more »
Fatima
Guest

This brings to mind Freaky Fortune’s “Loose up your feet”. It should be “Loosen up your feet”. But at least we can understand what Nicolas and Sanna are saying. With Teo, Bilara, Sebaltar etc their diction just isn’t good enough.

Linda Åberg Luthman
Guest
The word “undo” from Swedish to English propably means to have something not done, a task not finished or a mission not completed, it may need to be done again. Well, this may be a bit ambitious but I’ll give you some examples about the word from English to Swedish. Have a nice speech lesson! undo-verb ångra Undo, regret, repent, escape lossa loosen, Undo, unload, unclasp, loose, unfasten upphäva repeal, cancel, abolish, revoke, annul, withdraw öppna Open, unclose, uncap, open up, Undo, unwrap lösa solve, resolve, loose, unloosen, settle, unloose dra upp Pull up, draw up, land, beach, weigh, grub… Read more »
Lauren F
Guest

They have actually changed ‘sad’ to ‘sad love’ in some parts of the song, listen here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N_hmzLU1_cc&list=PLSUq3sbiuweIUIo1UQkPcJb67MtDcLNb_&feature=share&index=36

Malachy
Guest

Brilliant melody, wonderful singer but as already mentioned………

‘Undo my sad’ is ungrammatical, so much so that it is jarring on the ear of any native-speaker of the English language.

Might I suggest the following instead:
Undo the past,
Undo what hurt so bad.

DDD
Guest

DEAR MARY J I DO NOT CARE IF GOOGLE TRANSLATES MY “BAD” WORDS.
GOOGLE CREATE IT TO TRANSLATE EVERYTHING!
AND THIS IS MY OPINION AND I DO NOT CARE FOR YOURS!

JJ
Guest

When Mikael Jackson first said he was “Bad” it sounded a bit odd also….

However, the song sounds ok to me and I am English!

Mary
Guest

Actually, the word ‘sad’ has been used as a noun for quite a while now, in America. Particularly in phrases like “I have a sad.” It simply means “I am sad” but English is a living language, always morphing and changing. So the lyrics in the song actually do make sense to us over here with this use age. We have a lot of Scandinavian descent people here, so Sanna may just be THAT hip!

Marie
Guest

Hahaha great blog post haha but Im SURE this is not a mistake, they did this on purpose.. Next lyric is something bad.. Sad and bad rhymes obviously.. I thought as well she sang myself, but hey.. People are talking about the song 😉

Geo A
Guest

Come on guys it’s not such a big deal, for example SOAD did it too with “the most loneliest day of my life”. (Granted, they did that to add intensity to the lyric, but the fact that it fit into the rhythm must have helped). Grammatical inconsistencies are often found in songs and that’s OK. (I’ll admit that this one sounds kinda funny though :))

Zolan
Guest

So, they thought English is consistent? Suckers :p

Cantankerist
Guest

There’s no getting around it, it’s certainly going to strike English speakers as, ah, unusual. It could be that because the lingo of “my bad” has spread, the writers thought the same leeway would apply to “my sad”. The problem is, in a songwriting context – where the whole trick, as one poster above said, is getting the thing to rhyme – it seems like a stretch.

What really makes the performance/song stand out is the layer upon layer of (at least semi-vocoded) harmonies making the chorus shimmer and shine. Without them… does this song have the legs?

Ilpoxi
Guest

Can you correct it by saying Undo me sad? You can say Make me sad.

Alex
Guest

LMAO Mitchel and Charles, I have no idea what’s going on there but it’s great.

I dunno, Kempe might have accidentally assumed that just because you can talk about “the good, the bad, and the ugly” that you can also talk about “my good, my bad, and my ugly” in any context you want.

VilijaFan
Guest

Colourful*

Marcelo N
Guest
No need to be bitter about it, people! With all due respect, this is not the first time the Swedish lyricist-composer combos have erred… and maybe this time they did make a choice. Just think about it. On the other hand, native speakers of English luurrve saying things such as “I’m good” for “I’m OK” or whatever more grammatically accurate, just to mention one. And the use of an adjective in place of a noun could simply be explained/justified (if tentatively) by means of ellipsis (again, as in “My bad!” which I personally loathe, but hey, millions use). Back to… Read more »
Lanti
Guest

I didn’t understand what was “undo my sad”, so I ended up singing “undo what’s sad.”

Charles
Guest

@mitchel: Don’t worry about poetry, grammar and children writing songs … considering your request you should get ready to go to Copenhagen because there will be a lot c*** wanting to be touched …. a tradition settled in Eurovision preparation weeks for the last 10 years or so 🙂

Jacob
Guest

I always thought it was “undo my cell” *facepalm*

mitchel
Guest

” Sorry, but as a songwriter, you should understand that it has to rhyme…”

jajaja so crazy people on here trying to sound like EXPERTS..

Are you serious thinking that a song should rhyme without having in mind the correct grammar?

Then every child could compose songs… stupiiiiiiiii whoeeee

Can I touch your cock…

Charles
Guest

All this talk and so much fuzz for a bloody lyric line?
Is this how ESC fans now choose to say “I can’t accept this as the representative entry of Sweden in Eurovision”? Is not by being against the chosen song that things are going to change. Get a grip people! There are like 37 other songs to listen and enjoy … I mean…really?

gavin
Guest

indeed…. undo my sadness…

… but as i downloaded the lyrics so me and my 3 freinds could sing along at the reprise (of course to help Sanna out when she forgot the lyrics). they only had one question… “undo my sad, thats not even a scentence, what is this c*^p”. Now admitedly i dont share their opinion, but the lyrics have bothered me from day one.

Not overly happy for the song to be representing Sweden, however now i realise it about a seasnonal disorder im much happier! Shame it will almost be summer however when the contest arrives.

Kirsten
Guest

short for ‘undo my sadness’, it’s really not difficult

Joseph
Guest

HAHAHA!! This made me laugh! Great article you guys! 😀

Zolan
Guest

… still, it is strange that Fredrik Kempe (& co) wasn’t more careful, having written in English so often before.
Surely the criticism has reached his attention by now, so what will he do about it?

Arianna
Guest

lmao so much at this XD Love it

D
Guest

I could understand it fine and I’m not a native-English speaker. The lyrics of the song are pretty weak but Sanna’s voice makes up for it. Still not the best choice but I can live with it as long as that means Sanna will no longer take part in Melodifestivalen and Ace takes part again next year with an even better song.

Zolan
Guest

I’m calling accidental poetry.
It’s perfectly clear to literate anglophones, while asking the listener to pay more attention.
Is “undo my sadness” any less challenging as a concept? Or simply easier to ignore? Does “pay more attention” mean what it says?
I could care less.

Robyn
Guest
The first time I heard it, one of the lines sounded really familiar: “Nothing, I just stood for nothing / So I fell for every thing you said”. Then I realised – it’s reminiscent of this line from Katy Perry’s song “Roar”: “I stood for nothing, so I fell for everything”. Not that there’s anything wrong with it. It just makes me think of Katy Perry’s bubblegum pop when I should be drawn into Sanna’s world of pain/rain. As for “undo my sad”, it sounds like something an upset small child would say to their mum. It’s the sort of… Read more »
Branko
Guest

It must be “sad” because the word has to rhyme with “bad”… Sorry, but as a songwriter, you should understand that it has to rhyme… (Sorry for my bad English!)

Liam Thorne
Guest

The second time she says “undo my sad” in the chorus… Isn’t it “Undo myself”… ?

Not sure about the first time though

Kinzerlicious
Guest
Nielsen is obviously singing about Daria Kinzer’s experience in ESC and identifying herself as Kinzer. What if she doesn’t qualify in the semifinal herself? In that case, they should undo her sad, undo what hurt so bad, undo what her pain, get out, through the rain (as it will obviously be raining in Copenhagen in May). She knows that she is over it when she finally does know what do to again (and that’s competing in a NF of another country, Belgium or Georgia for example, like Kinzer participated in the Swiss selection this year). So it’s pretty clear what… Read more »
Tamara
Guest

lol. while we’re at it, i thought Sanna was speaking Japanese in the first line. Can’t. Wait. Here. is three words Sanna. Not one!

Mary J
Guest

DDD: They are just kidding! The entire tone is tongue-in-cheek. And, to be fair, EVERY NATIVE ENGLISH SPEAKER is confused by this “undo my sad” line. It’s strange to say the least. But still: great song! (Also, Google Translate translates your bad words DDD)

DDD
Guest

Grafeis malakies! Papara!