It Becomes You – A Story Behind the Song

It Becomes You – A Story Behind the Song

I can’t tell you what any song means (that’s up to you to decide), but I can tell you a little about what was in my head when I was writing the lyrics to “It Becomes You,” the opening song of the show.

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I’m always interested in understanding what leads people to do what they do. Ordinary people like you and me are capable of incredible heroics and self-sacrifice, like responding to natural disasters in altruistic and neighborly ways. Under certain conditions, by contrast, almost all of us can be persuaded to do terrible things, stuff we’d swear we’d never do, as has been documented in examples like the Stanford Prison Experiment. I think war stories are often poignant because they reveal both extremes.

It seems like we grow into whatever “uniforms” we choose to wear, for better or worse. This song sets the stage for a war story with a meditation on becoming what we wear, so to speak, and the idea that behaving badly usually results from a (correctable) condition that social psychologist Albert Bandura calls “moral disengagement.”

—Andrew Maxfield, producer/lyricist

It Becomes You

Born good
Done what you should
Born blessed
Silver buttons on your Sunday best

Stitch of cotton, crimson sash
It becomes you
Ankle irons, burlap and ash
It becomes you
It becomes you

Strong mind
Put to sleep or left behind
Strong nerve
To give what they deserve

Navy cross, silver star
It becomes you
Variegated marks of war
It becomes you
It becomes you