Seemingly disregarded and hidden on Track 12 of Incubus' 1999 full album release Make Yourself is an unassuming three minute forty-four second song which would turn into one of fans' favorite songs. Pardon Me captures the listerner's attention with agressive, angsty lyrics backed by a funk fueled bass line and quiet, thoughtful guitar creation in the acoustic version. Lead singer of Incubus, Brandon Boyd, claims that he became inspired to write the song the way he did when he saw an article on spontaneous combustion in an old Life Magazine. A graphic picture showed an older man's legs still in his shoes, but everything above where his knees should have appeared was a charred pile of ash. Boyd reportedly said that the picture struck burned such an image in his memory that he immediately decided to write a song about it.

Thematically, the song lyrics themselves are not that complex. The story behind the song is told in the present tense, as the writer contemplates what has become of his life as well as how he unexpectedly arrived there (“a decade ago I never thought I would be…”). Boyd then metaphorically compares his tumultuous twenties with and “ominous landscape” where things keep going wrong no matter how he tries to prepare himself for what lies behind each new day. The next line of the song presents a point of interest. Boyd sings, “I need you to hear, I need you to see…” It is at this point of the song that we learn that the song is actually a conversation Boyd is having with an unnamed, previously unmentioned partner. Whether this partner is a lover, a friend, the world; no further identification clues are given in the piece.

The chorus represents a tempo change in the song. Going from what has been a mostly quiet band and quickly sung lyrics since line two of the song, Boyd suddenly (starting with “to me”) draws out his lines while the drums and guitar really kick their tempo into a higher gear. Lyrically, the writer is seemingly trying to relate how he is tired of fighting the entire world for happiness. The writer is confused by the compulsion people around him display to play games to attempt to better themselves through the troubles of others. When Boyd sings that he plans to “rise above the flame” he is comparing the games and attacks from other people to a fire that he must cross to find happiness in his own life. He is asking his unknown conversation partner to pardon him from doing so, because this pursuit of happiness is not always socially accepted. It always seems “more grown up” to go to college and get a job in an office requiring a suit and tie than to embark on the life of a rock star musician, which is clearly the path Boyd has chosen. The final line of the chorus is asking that other people have this kind of bravery and not “be the same” as everybody else.

In the second verse Boyd talks about the picture he saw in that issue of Life Magazine which inspired him so. The line in this verse which presents the most interest is “the burdens of the planet earth. / Like gravity hypocrisy and the perils of being in 3-D.” Boyd is presenting three, as he calls it, unavoidable burdens everyone must face. Everyone needs to accept gravity from the Earth’s mass as a given to life. Hypocrisy is something which we would all like to say doesn’t exist in mass quantities, but Boyd is quick to point out that in a struggle to win in life, many people are hypocritical and will forget promises they made to themselves when younger in order to succeed as adults. When, after the ellipsis, he adds “and thinking so much differently,” Boyd is acknowledging society's view of his personality type as a burden to be dealt with. To others, he concedes that his “break the mold” attitude may be construed as disruptive or dangerous. This one line shows that Boyd has reached a song-writing maturity not present in earlier songs (notably from Fungus Amongus). The song ends with a drawn out rendition of the powerful chorus.

Coupled with Drive and Stellar, Pardon Me is clearly part of the creative center of Make Yourself as a record. As part of the driving force behind Incubus’ reaching out to a mainstream crowd, a trend they continued beautifully in future albums Morning View and A Crow Left of the Murder, Pardon Me was a Top 10 single once released and was a crucial corner in the development of Incubus as both a songwriting band as well as a popular group.


Pardon Me Lyrics

Pardon me while I burst.....

A decade ago, I never thought I would be,
At twenty three, on the verge of
spontaneous combustion. Woe-is-me. But I
guess that it comes with the territory; an
ominous landscape of
never ending calamity
I need you to hear, I need you to see that I have
had all I can take and
exploding seems like a definite possibility
to me.
So pardon me while I burst into flames.
I've had enough of the world, and it's people's mindless
games.
So pardon me while I burn and rise above the flame.
Pardon me, Pardon me...Don't ever be the same.

Not two days ago,
I was having a look in a book and I saw a picture of a
guy
fried up above his knees
I said, "I can relate," cause' lately I've been thinking of combustication
as a welcomed vacation from
the burdens of the planet earth.
Like gravity hypocrisy and the perils of being in 3-D...
and thinking so much differently.
Pardon me while I burst into flames.
I've had enough of the world and it's people's mindless games.
So pardon me while I burn and rise above the flame.
Pardon me, Pardon me...Don't ever be the same.
Pardon me while I burst into flames.
Pardon me, Pardon me, Pardon me.
So pardon me while I burst into flames.
I've had enough of the world and it's people's mindless games.
So pardon me while I burn and rise above the flame.
Pardon me, Pardon me... Don't ever be the same.


Pardon Me Tablature

Tuning: Standard (E A D G B E)

Introduction
 
E|----------------------------------------------------------0-00--|
B|--------0----------------0----------------0---------------0-00--|
D|----4-----4-----------4----4----------4-----4-----------4-------|
G|--2---2-----2-------2---2----2------2---2-----2-------2---------|
A|4-------------4---------------4--4---------------4--------------|
E|-----------------5----------------------------------5-----------|

Pre Verse 

E|-------------0--------------------------------0----------------------|
B|-------------0--------------------------------0----------------------|
D|6-666-66--22-2--6-666-66--22-----6-666-66--22-2--6-666-66--99--------|
G|6-666-66--22-2--6-666-66--22-----6-666-66--22-2--6-666-66--99-99-88--|
A|4-444-44--00-0--4-444-44--00-2---4-444-44--00-0--4-444-44--77-99-88--|
E|-----------------------------0--------------------------------77-66--|

Verse 

E|----------------------------------00-------------00----00-----------0----44--|
B|------77-----77-------------------00-------------00----00-----------0----44--|
D|------44-----44-----66-----66-----88-----88------99----99-------8--------44--|
G|---6--66-----66-----55-----55-----66-----99------77----77-----6----------66--|
A|----------7--77--6--66--6--66--4--44-----99---5--55--5-55---4------------66--|
E|--------------------------------------7--77---------------------------4--44--|

E|--------------------------------2-2--|
B|------99----99------77--------2-2-2--|
D|------88----88--------------4--------|
G|------99----99------88----4----------|
A|---7--77--7-77--6---66---2-----------|
E|-------------------------------------|

Fill 1

E|--0-0--0000-0-0-00--|
B|--0-0--0000-0-0-00--|
D|--2-2--2222-2-2-22--|
G|--2-2--2222-2-2-22--|
A|--0 0--0000-0-0-00--|
E|--------------------|

Chorus

-|-------PLAY THIS PART TWICE------|
E|------------------0--------------|---------------------0--0-|
B|------------------0--------------|---------------------0--0-|
D|6-666-66--44--2-2-2--------------|-6-666-66-22-44-4--4------|
G|6-666-66--44--2-2-2--------------|-6-666-66-22-44-4--4------|
A|4-444-44--22--0-0-0--4-222-4-000-|-4-444-44-00-22-2--2------|
E|---------------------2-000-2-000-|--------------------------|

E|------------------------------------|
B|------------------------------------|
D|6-666-66--22-44--4--4---------------|
G|6-666-44--00-22--2--4---------------|
A|4-444-44--00-22--2--2--4-222-4-222--|
E|-----------------------2-000-2-000--|

Fill 2

E|-----------|
B|-----------|
D|-----------|
G|-----------|
A|--66---22--|
E|--44---00--|

Fill 3 

E|----0----0----0---0---|
B|---0-0--0-0--0-0-0-0--|
D|--6---6----6----6-----|
G|----------------------|
A|----------------------|
E|----------------------|

Ending 

E|-------------0---------------------------------------------------------|
B|-------------0---------------------------------------------------------|
D|6-666-66--22-2--6-666-66--22-----6-666-66--99----------6-666-66-22-----|
G|6-666-66--22-2--6-666-66--22-----6-666-66--99----------6-666-66-22-----|
A|4-444-44--00-0--4-444-44--00-2---4-444-44--77--99-88---4-444-44-00--2--|
E|-----------------------------0-----------------77-66----------------0--|

Song Structure:
Introduction
Pre Verse
Verse
Fill 1
Chorus
Fill 2
Verse
Fill 1
Chorus
Introduction
Fill 3
Chorus
Ending


Pardon Me Album Credits

Make Yourself -- Oct 26, 1999

When Incubus Attacks, Vol. 1 (Acoustic version only) -- Aug 18, 2000

Both albums produced by Epic Records of Sony Music Entertainment, Inc.



Sources
http://cifraclub.terra.com.br/cifras/cifras.php?idcifra=11702
http://www.enjoyincubus.com/
http://www.mxtabs.net/tab_versions.php?path=Guitar,i,612,Incubus,Pardon+Me,2539
http://www.songfacts.com/detail.lasso?id=3234


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