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AxlHBK
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« on: December 10, 2020, 11:15:16 AM »

A question about One in a Million that has nothing to do with the controversy about the lyrics in the verses of the song:

Does anyone have any thoughts about what the connection is between the verses and chorus of the song? The lyrics of the chorus are:

You're one in a million
Yeah that's what you are
You're one in a million babe
You're a shooting star
Maybe some day we'll see you
Before you make us cry
You know we tried to reach you
But you were much to high


I have always struggled to understand what the meaning of these lyrics are when contextualized with the lyrics of verses. Who is the "you" referenced here? The "voice" of the song, or the police, n****s, immigrants and f****s?
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« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2020, 12:59:10 PM »

I always thought it was about someone who overdosed.
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« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2020, 02:00:20 PM »

The meaning lies at the outro lyrics of another song :
"Hey wha'd'ya think he's tryin' to say there, anyway?
I think it's something each person's s'posed to take in their own special way"
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« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2020, 11:55:36 PM »

Rolling Stone, August 1989
https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-news/axl-rose-the-rolling-stone-interview-3-184068/

The interview breaks down the entire song with Axl himself.  You can read the whole thing at the link above, but here is the excerpt that addresses your question.

So far the song that’s inspired the most controversy in the band’s short career has been “One in a Million.” How did you come to write that song?

AXL: I started writing about wanting to get out of L.A. for a little while.  I’d been down to the downtown-L.A. Greyhound bus station.  There are a large number of black men selling stolen jewelry, crack, heroin, and pot.  Rip-off artists selling parking spaces to parking lots that there’s no charge for.  Trying to misguide every kid that gets off the bus and doesn’t quite know where to go.  That’s how I hit town.  The thing with “One in a Million” is, basically, we’re all one in a million, we’re all here on this earth.  We’re one fish in a sea.  Let’s quit fucking with each other, fucking with me.
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« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2020, 12:29:46 AM »

I always took it as the perspective of Axl's friends/family in Indiana, saying "you got a big ego goin out to Hollywood, but it's rough there, too".
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« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2020, 10:16:54 AM »

I think Bridge answered your question.
I understood it this way:
Millions of talents (shooting stars) come to LA. At first you have to survive the whole jungle. If your talent does shine through, its a question whether you will survive the drugs... even though your friends tried to help you (bring you back down on the ground), you were much too high, either drug high or ego high...
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