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Music Discussions

Paris
02/03/2017

Dynamic ImageMain Point of Discussion: The world offers an alluring picture of escapism and pleasure, but it often turns out to be a fleeting illusion

Introducing The Song:
2016 has been a good year for The Chainsmokers with them conquering the Billboard Hot 100 chart with singles like “Don’t Let Me Down,” “Closer,” and “All We Know.” They look to continue this top performance with their latest single “Paris” featuring vocals by Louane. This is the second song on which Andrew Taggart of The Chainsmokers provides vocals on a track. Can they catch up to “Closer” success?

“Paris” here does not necessarily mean the city in France (hence the beach shots in the video). The word is used as metaphor which is explained at the beginning of the video like this: “sentimental yearning for a reality that isn’t genuine. An irrecoverable condition for fantasy that evokes nostalgia or day dreams.”
The lyrics to the song are pretty simple when “Paris” is taken in the meaning that is given above. The guy and the girl are living in their own fantasy (http://justrandomthings.com/2017/01/13/the-chainsmokers-release-lyric-video-paris-ft-louane/)

Much of the “Paris” metaphor revolves around a yearning for pleasure and the escape from perceived stifling conditions (such as parents and responsibilities etc.) So the song provides a great springboard for a discussion about the world’s mantra of instant gratification and how the Bible responds to that message.

The Music Video:
The music video can be viewed for free at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RhU9MZ98jxo

WARNING--Note to Leader:
The video follows a young woman throughout in a very revealing and skimpy bikini bathing suit. We don’t recommend showing this to your group. Use your own discretion.



Song Lyrics:
"Paris"

We were staying in Paris
To get away from your parents
And I thought, "Wow, if I could take this in a shot right now
I don't think that we could work this out."

Out on the terrace
I don't know if it's fair but I thought, "How could I let you fall by yourself
While I'm wasted with someone else?"

If we go down then we go down together
They'll say you could do anything
They'll say that I was clever
If we go down then we go down together
We'll get away with everything
Let's show them we are better
Let's show them we are better
Let's show them we are better

We were staying in Paris
To get away from your parents
You look so proud standing there with a frown and a cigarette
Posting pictures of yourself on the Internet

Out on the terrace
We breathe in the air of this small town
On our own cuttin' class for the thrill of it
Getting drunk on the past we were livin' in

If we go down then we go down together
They'll say you could do anything
They'll say that I was clever
If we go down then we go down together
We'll get away with everything
Let's show them we are better

Let's show them we are
Show them we are
Show them we are
Show them we are
Let's show them we are better

We were staying in Paris

Let's show them we are better
Let's show them we are
Show them we are
Show them we are
Show them we are
Let's show them we are better

If we go down then we go down together
They'll say you could do anything
They'll say that I was clever
If we go down then we go down together
We'll get away with everything
Let's show them we are better

We were staying in Paris (if we go down)
We were staying in Paris (if we go down)
We were staying in Paris (if we go down)
We were staying in Paris (if we go down)
Let's show them we are better
We were staying in Paris

Let's show them we are better
Let's show them we are better
If we go down
Let's show them we are better
If we go down
Let's show them we are better
If we go down
Let's show them we are better
Let's show them we are better


Transitional Statement- You Say This:
In a picture that they tweeted before releasing “Paris,” The Chainsmokers define “Paris” as “a sentimental yearning for a reality that isn’t genuine” and “an irrevocable condition for fantasy that evokes nostalgia or day dreams.” The band is telling us here that “Paris” is about searching for something that isn’t real and hiding from the truth of what one’s life is.

They also explained on Twitter that “Paris is a metaphor for that place u go to where everything’s ok. It’s subjective. It’s where those who don’t understand u don’t exist.” “Paris” sounds like a place most people would at least like to visit. It’s a place one runs away to and creates a temporary, alternate reality in, and that’s exactly what the song is about. (http://cliffordstumme.com/2017/01/20/what-does-paris-by-the-chainsmokers-mean)


Divide into Small Groups:
Let’s go ahead and split up into our discussion groups, and then afterward we’ll come back together for a final word.

CLICK HERE for a quick training article on how to maximize your small groups using our small group format—a great resource to equip your small group leaders.

Discussion Questions:
  1. AROUND THE CIRCLE: Before we dive in, everybody answer this question- if you could live anywhere in the world for one year, where would you live and why?

  2. ASK A FEW: Do you think it is common among your peers that teens want to ‘get away’ from their parents? Why or why not?

  3. ASK A FEW: What do you think they mean by ‘if we go down, we go down together’?

  4. ASK A FEW: Do you believe teenagers have an increased desire to be irresponsible and impulsive as they get older and have more pressure? Why or why not?

  5. ASK A FEW: Do you see this song as a parody of the millennial generation’s tendency towards recklessness? Why or why not?

  6. ASK A FEW: One journalist wrote this about Paris:

      “Overall, “Paris” is about a young couple that is struggling to find independence and to escape some unpleasant aspect of a reality they left behind, however temporarily.” (http://cliffordstumme.com/2017/01/20/what-does-paris-by-the-chainsmokers-mean)

    Do you agree? Why or why not?

  7. Read the following passage from the Bible:

      Luke 15:11-24

      11 Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons. 12 The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them.
      13 “Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. 14 After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. 15 So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. 16 He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything.
      17 “When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! 18 I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you.19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.’ 20 So he got up and went to his father.
      “But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.
      21 “The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’
      22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. 23 Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. 24 For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.

  8. ASK A FEW: What is the connection between this passage and these lyrics from the song: “We were staying in Paris, To get away from your parents”

  9. ASK A FEW: What similarities are there between the prodigal son and the characters in Paris? (i.e. both seeking escape and temporary pleasure)

  10. ASK A FEW: Do you think the prodigal son enjoyed his time in the distant country? Why or why not?

  11. ASK A FEW: What do you think he spent all his money on?

  12. ASK A FEW: What made him come to his senses?

  13. ASK A FEW: What does this passage teach us about temporary pleasure vs. the lasting fulfillment of a relationship with God?

  14. ASK A FEW: If you had to compare your spiritual journey with the prodigal son’s journey, where are you now?

  15. AROUND THE CIRCLE: What’s the lesson for you in this parable?

Wrap Up:
The Chainsmokers have painted an interesting picture of the world’s philosophy of escaping our problems and pursuing temporary pleasure. But when you compare their narrative with the parable of the prodigal son, it is a vivid reminder that each day we are faced with a choice to keep wallowing in the mud, or returning to a loving Father who looks for our return each day, runs to greet us even when we are far away, and throws a party in heaven when we repent. When you experience that kind of unconditional love over time, the allure of Paris fades quickly.

Close in prayer

Written by Lane Palmer

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Comments on this post

   Chris         3/31/2017 7:57:37 PM

Worked out well. Good flow of questions. Group got some good conversation going here.

   Kristin Baldwin         3/7/2017 5:53:30 PM

really good kids enjoyed it















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