Addiction is akin to playing a game of Russian Roulette, where being fortunate means losing the people we hold dearest. The Big Pink’s latest music video, “Lucky One,” delves into this theme. Inspired by the untimely death of the band’s frontman Robbie Furze’s close friend due to a tragic overdose, the song’s message carries great poignancy and significance.
Last year alone, nearly 110,000 Americans lost their lives to overdoses, surpassing the combined casualties of all U.S. conflicts since the Vietnam War. Addiction has become our modern-day battleground, and The Big Pink’s “Lucky One” video serves as a rallying cry for this generation. In collaboration with “Eternity,” a fundraising initiative for Taking Action on Addiction and Forward Trust, the band has partnered with organizations actively involved in the fight against addiction.
How does “Lucky One” commemorate the life of your lost friend?
Every time I hear the song, or perform the song, I think of him, I see his face and I remember all the wonderful times that we had together. He was a close friend of mine. That night that he died, we were working on a project together and making plans. I wanted to write something to commemorate him being here, something that would live forever as a testament to his life. The song is a reminder to me, and I hope to anyone else who hears it, how lucky we are to be alive, to be here on this earth. I hope that the words will have an impact on people in some way and remind them of the preciousness of life, how fragile it is, especially anyone struggling with addiction and mental health issues. That night we lost my friend, it could have been anyone, it could have been me, but this time it was him. If there’s a heaven, I hope that he’s looking down and that he’s proud of this track.
The music and lyrics evoke a visceral feeling of loss and all the emotions that come with that. How did you write this track and did you find any sense of closure during that process?
Sometimes a track just writes itself. I was in a state of shock as I had found out that morning, and I had been with him the night before. I was so angry and confused. I didn’t want to remember him with these emotions, and I was looking for a positive message, as hard as it was. I liked this idea that I had just dodged a bullet. I had literally been with him 5/6 hours earlier and I felt like he would have thought, in a roundabout way, that this was kind of funny. He had a dark humor. He was there and then not there. Life is amazing and we need to really understand how delicate and fragile it is. I’ve risked so much in my own life, and I’ve been so blasé about it, my friend dying, so randomly, was a real wake-up call.If this song does anything, I hope that it’s a reminder that we are all lucky to be here and we shouldn’t take that for granted. It can all change at the drop of a hat.
The video has a raw aesthetic—crosscutting the live performance at Glasgow’s Barrowlands with shots of street graffiti, echoing the lyrics in the song. What was it like recording this performance for the video, given the sensitive and personal nature of the song?
Performing a song that you have written is one of the main reasons I’m a musician; it feels amazing. I love Glasgow Barrowlands. It's one of the most iconic and beautiful venues I’ve been fortunate enough to perform in. I felt, to do my friend any justice at all, that this was the stage I wanted to be recorded singing our song on, and it is our song, and it always will be.
With the opioid epidemic affecting so many people and the rise of fentanyl as one of the leading causes of death in the U.S., so many of us have tragically lost someone due to addiction. What message do you hope this song imparts to listeners, particularly those who may have had a similar experience?
Just be careful! None of us have any idea of what we are buying. If you feel slightly apprehensive about what you are about to do, or nervous about who is giving it to you, just don’t do it! Or at the very least, have those fentanyl strips with you. They’re becoming much more readily available. It really is a game of roulette these days.