Krystian Ochman won the 2020 series of The Voice of Poland. In some ways it was an early touchpoint for Eurovision: Polish Eurovision stars and The Voice judges Michał Szpak and Edyta Górniak both turned their chairs for him. Now, riding a wave of domestic support and carried by his stunning vocals, Ochman is ready to stand on his own on the big stage in Torino. 

His soulful ballad “River” emerged as a Eurofan favourite long before it was even submitted to Poland’s Eurovision selection. During the recent pre-party tour, the 22-year-old has consistently impressed audiences with his pitch perfect vocals, which help convey the song’s spiritual gravity. The “River” lyrics are all about recognising our suffering — no matter how large or small — and letting go of it. 

Scroll down for the “River” lyrics

Poland in Eurovision 2022: Ochman “River”

Ochman was born in Melrose, Massachusetts to a Polish family. He catapulted to fame in Poland on the eleventh series of The Voice. On the show he tackled songs like Labrinth’s “Beneath Your Beautiful” and Il Divo’s “My Way”. He also dove into the folk offerings of Simon & Garfunkel (“The Sound of Silence”) and the soaring drama of Eric Carmen’s “All By Myself”, showing his vast range and comfort across many genres. 

The bookies have consistently rated his song “River” at or near the top of the odds table. They’re confident he’ll sail through his semi-final and threaten for a top spot in the grand final. 

What do “River” lyrics mean?

Rivers carry deep meaning across most world religions. Jesus was famously baptised in the Jordan River — an event that has forever cast rivers as places of renewal and rebirth in many western cultures. And Hindus consider several rivers to be deities, affording purification and protection.

These ideas carry over to Ochman’s “River”, which opens with a verse on letting go in search of transformation: “Gonna take my body down, right down, down, down to the river…let the water carry me away, just float away…”

Later, there’s a sense of the singer having a reckoning with himself and his past sins. He seems to invoke a kingmaker, who perhaps went too far with his ambitions: “Who’d wanna be a king, pulling too many strings, all that I’ve done, oh Lord, I’m done.”

Speaking to our Diego in Warsaw, Ochman took a less religious tone. He offered a general take about coping with daily struggles, expectations and indeed the darkness the world seems to be coping with at large. 

“It sounds very generalised, but a lot of stuff is going around, a lot of bad things,” he says. “Whatever demons we have in our heads….we stress out about things that haven’t even occurred. I’m talking specifically about our futures. We try to plan something out that hasn’t even occurred yet and that brings us a lot of stress. The song is basically about getting to this point of inner peace and letting go for at least a hot second.”

“River” lyrics – Ochman (Poland ESC 2022)

Written and composed by: Adam Wisniewski, Ashley Hicklin, Krystian Ochman, Mikołaj Trybulec

Gonna take my body down

Right down, down, down to the river

Gonna take my body down

Let the water carry me away

Just float away

Oh oh

 

Bury all of my things

Bury me in my skin

All that I’ve done

Oh Lord, I’m done

Who’d wanna be a king

Pulling too many strings

All that I’ve done

Oh Lord,

I’m done

 

Carry me away

I float away

In the river

 

Gonna lay my head right down

Right now, now, now and forever

Gonna lay my head right down

Let the water carry me away

Just float away

 

Bury all of my things

Bury me in my skin

All that I’ve done

Oh Lord, I’m done

Who’d wanna be a king

Pulling too many strings

All that I’ve done

Oh Lord, I’m done

 

Carry me away

I float away

In the river, oh oh

In the river, oh oh

In the river, oh yeah

 

Bury all of my things

Bury me in my skin

All that I’ve done

Oh Lord, I’m done

Who’d wanna be a king

Pulling too many strings

All that I’ve done

Oh Lord, I’m done

 

Gonna take my body down

Right down, down

Down to the river

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jack
jack
2 months ago

The lyrics are shockingly bad but I quite like the song ha!

Lambert
Lambert
2 months ago

Just gave the song another try..still see this in the top-5 for most irritating ESC 2022 entry.

mark dowd
mark dowd
2 months ago
Reply to  Lambert

you’re in a very small club

Luk
Luk
2 months ago

Ochman is the best

Amorata Delfont
Amorata Delfont
2 months ago

He could use a little work on his stage presence, but his vocals are absolutely great! I hope he does well, certainly better than that ‘creepy grandad in the club’ entry Poland had last year.

Blondy
2 months ago

For the first time Poland is my absolutely number 1. I love his voice and the song is a masterpiece.

Sometimes
Sometimes
2 months ago

Let me first say, that i absolutely love this song.
Now that i have said that….
This song lyrics doesn’t inspire me to let go of my fears and worries(like title of this article suggests), but instead it makes me think more about giving up and throwing yourself into the river and dying.

Cedee
Cedee
2 months ago
Reply to  Sometimes

I agree. I think most people will interprete it that way, like I did when I heard it the first time. Unless you don’t get the explanation. Certainly it is less encouraging message if you say it is about giving up and jump into the river. But somehow the lyrics appear more dramatic because of this ‘wrong’ interpretation. I was caught primarily because of the lyrics, gave me a surprising “oh-effect”, poor guy. 🙂 I love this song, too.

Dawid
Dawid
2 months ago

Lyrics are the weakest part of that song, yet still not bad at all.

Whisker
Whisker
2 months ago

These lyrics sound like giving up for good.

Dent
Dent
2 months ago
Reply to  Whisker

can I buy some salt from you? my store ran out