top of page


Gnarls Barkley
St Elsewhere

Song Meaning of Crazy by Gnarls Barkley, and what it is about

The lyrics came out of a conversation Cee-Lo and Danger Mouse had in the studio.

The song has a haunting melody inspired by spaghetti-Western-soundtrack composer Ennio Morricone, “Crazy” didn’t feel like a hit. “It seemed too out there for urban radio and too urban for rock radio,” Danger Mouse told Rolling Stone.

Crazy, is the debut single of American soul duo Gnarls Barkley, taken from their 2006 debut album, St. Elsewhere.

Danger Mouse's manager sent the song to Downtown's A&R Josh Deutsch.

According to an interview with Deutsch in HitQuarters, he heard the song and signed it after a single listen.

He said: "Once in a while you hear a record that is obviously so important on so many levels. The beauty of my position is that it's very direct. If I find something I like there's no bureaucratic process associated with signing it."

By the time the record was signed to Downtown, there was already a huge swell of anticipation, in part due to the established reputation.

On its release, "Crazy" became the most downloaded song in the history of the UK music business, going to number one due to downloads alone.

Musically, "Crazy" was inspired by film scores of Spaghetti Westerns, in particular by the works of Ennio Morricone, and the song "Last Men Standing" by Gian Piero Reverberi and Gian Franco Reverberi from the 1968 Spaghetti Western Django, Prepare a Coffin, an unofficial prequel to Django.

"Crazy" samples the song, and also utilizes parts of the main melody and chord structure. Because of this, the Reverberis are credited as songwriters along with CeeLo Green and Danger Mouse.

The lyrics for the song developed out of a conversation between Danger Mouse and Green.

According to Danger Mouse, "I somehow got off on this tangent about how people won't take an artist seriously unless they're insane... So we started jokingly discussing ways in which we could make people think we were crazy... CeeLo took that conversation and made it into 'Crazy', which we recorded in one take."

The song peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100 and topped the charts in the United Kingdom, Canada, and several other countries.

Lyrics of Crazy by Gnarls Barkley

I remember when

I remember, I remember when I lost my mind

There was something so pleasant about that place

Even your emotions have an echo, in so much space, mmm

And when you're out there without care

Yeah, I was out of touch

But it wasn't because I didn't know enough

I just knew too much, mm


Does that make me crazy?

Does that make me crazy?

Does that make me crazy?



And I hope that you are having the time of your life

But think twice, that's my only advice, mm

Come on now, who do you

Who do you, who do you, who do you think you are?

Ha, ha, ha, bless your soul

You really think you're in control?


Well, I think you're crazy

I think you're crazy

I think you're crazy

Just like me


My heroes had the heart to lose their lives out on the limb

And all I remember is thinkin' I wanna be like them, mm-hmm

Ever since I was little

Ever since I was little, it looked like fun

And it's no coincidence I've come

And I can die when I'm done


But maybe I'm crazy

Maybe you're crazy

Maybe we're crazy



Mm-woah, ooh

Ooh, woo-ooh

Ooh, ooh

Ooh-hoo, mm-hmm

Release Date



Brian Burton, Thomas Callaway, Gian Franco Reverberi, Gian Piero Reverberi


Danger Mouse


Downtown, Warner

More songs from this artist click below:

Other Songs

bottom of page