Speaking with CNN , Foster the People frontman Mark Foster said he wrote the song after reading about the shocking rise in teenage mental illness in America. According to Foster, while writing the song, he said his aim was to enter the mind of an isolated and psychotic youth and try to bring to the attention of Americans the issue of gun violence among American youth — a problem Foster feels is caused by things such as lack of love and isolation. Could it be as a result of jealousy? Could it be because he was bullied by the other kids? Or could it just be as a result of his mental illness getting the better part of him? The incident claimed the lives of 9 people, including the perpetrator and left six others injured.
This interview was conducted prior to Tuesday's terror attack in New York City. But not everyone immediately noticed the cautionary tale about gun violence that lead singer Mark Foster relates in the lyrics:. Chat with us in Facebook Messenger. Find out what's happening in the world as it unfolds.
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It was released as the group's debut single in September , and the following year was included on their EP Foster the People and their debut album, Torches. The song was written and recorded by frontman Mark Foster while he was working as a commercial jingle writer. Contrasting with the upbeat musical composition, the lyrics describe the homicidal thoughts of a troubled youth. The track received considerable attention after it was posted online in as a free download, and it helped the group garner a multi-album record deal with Columbia Records imprint Startime International.