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Sun, from "Tequila Sunrise," by The Eagles

Subthemes: Passage of Time, Astronomy, Directions

In The Eagle’s “Tequila Sunrise,” a lonely young man, slogging through his days as a hired hand, aches for his girlfriend, who is out runnin’ ‘round. The reddish-hued sunrises come and go, but nothing alleviates his sadness. Here is the poetic song’s official release. Other subthemes of Sun rise.

It’s another tequila sunrise
Stirrin' slowly ‘cross the sky
Said goodbye

He was just a hired hand
Workin’ on the dreams he planned to try
The days go by

Every night when the sun goes down
Just another lonely boy in town
And she’s out runnin' ‘round

She wasn’t just another woman
And I couldn’t keep from comin’ on
It’s been so long

Oh, and it’s a hollow feelin'
When it comes down to dealin' friends
It never ends

Take another shot of courage
Wonder why the right words never come
You just get numb

It’s another tequila sunrise
This old world still looks the same
Another frame

Source: Musixmatch
© Universal Music - Mgb Songs

Passage of Time : The days go by – since forever people (and the proverbial rooster) have awakened with the sunrise and gone to sleep when the sun goes down. Before electricity and affordable illumination arrived, daylight – the smile of the Sun – heralded the time to rise and get underway. At least for the men; as Jean Little wrote, “Man works from sun to sun, but a women’s work is never done.” You can’t tend olive trees if you can’t see them. Early on, people used sundials to tell the approximate time of day. The oldest known sundial was made in Egypt in 1500 BC. It was L-shaped so the top of its vertical leg cast its shadow hour on the horizontal leg.

No one has precisely defined dawn or dusk, but sunrise and sunset are determined to the minute: sunrise is the moment the apparent uppermost ray of the Sun touches the astronomical horizon. Explained differently, sunrise and sunset are based on when the upper edge of the Sun`s disc appears to touch the horizon. If it is the first ray, it is sunrise and if it is the last ray, it is sunset. In the Northern Hemisphere, days grow longer during the Spring until the start of Summer, and then they become shorter because of the Earth’s tilt and its rotation around the Sun.

Astronomy : Not that the hired hand cares, but the orange-red sunrise comes about because of moisture in the atmosphere lit by stupendous nuclear fission 93 million miles away (think of the color of a mixture of orange juice, grenadine, and tequila). Stars come into being as massive amounts of interstellar dust clump together by gravity, until it reaches a mass and gravity to collapse. As the dust cloud collapses, the material at the center heats to the point where it sets off the blazes of fusion. Known as a protostar, the hot core at the heart of the collapsing cloud will one day become a star.

A star the size of our Sun requires about 50 million years to mature from the beginning of the collapse to adulthood. Once ignited, stars fuse their lighter elements, initially hydrogen into helium, and eventually, helium into heavier elements up to iron, thereby releasing massive amounts of energy until the star dies. At the hellish center, our solar furnace rages at about 27,000,000 °F.

Our Sun belches out enormous solar flares which cause the aurora borealis and periodically blinkers our electrical systems. Infrequent gargantuan solar flares have also enabled scientists to date wood with great accuracy. The Sun and all its prodigious pyrotechnics illustrate the power of E = MC2.

Even so, our Sun is a small player in an outer arm of the Milky Way galaxy, home to about a hundred thousand million stars. The Sun’s spiral arm, called the Orion Spur, extends outward from the Sagittarius arm. The Sun (and all of its tiny orbiting crumbs) trundles around the center of the galaxy (a massive black hole) at an average of 450,000 miles per hour (720,000 kilometers per hour). On a larger scale, millions upon millions of other galaxies are rushing away from each other. The number of stars might be larger than the number of sand grains in Arabia’s deserts.

Directions : Out on the range, the Sun served as one of the directional markers for the hired hands. East and West are brightly clear. For years, people decided their path, locally or across frontiers, by noting the position of the Sun. The necessity of navigation by the Sun and other stars was crucial for sailors. Their requisite instrument, a sextant, takes the height of the Sun at a certain time each day to determine the ship’s latitude. Even at night, the albedo of the Moon – courtesy of the Sun – guided people.


His days punctuated by the rising and setting of the sun, a lonely buckaroo pines for his woman – she had said goodbye. Each day revives the heartbreak, and the Sun coming up, especially with its garish hue, reminds him of his lost direction and departed love.

If you are interested in further thoughts on the concept of the Sun, consider other subthemes that don’t fit as directly to the poem, painting, rock song, and movie written about in this series. For an overview, this article explains Themes from Art or click on the navigation bar, About. Or other Themes might intrigue you, or you might want to explore particular subthemes.

We invite you to read about other rock songs discussed on this blog, and their themes. Here they are:

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