"Clouds" (CD Single)

Music review by
Kyle Jackson, Common Sense Media
"Clouds" (CD Single) Music Poster Image
Teen with terminal cancer leaves behind a beautiful song.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

While Sobiech acknowledges that he's in a "dark and lonely hole," he still carries on as if "everything will be just fine." The fact that he devoted the end of his life to sharing his music with the world is inspirational in and of itself. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

It's incredible to see such a young man confront death with his art and try to stay positive about going up to the "clouds because the view's a little nicer."

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What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this heartfelt and inspiring song written and performed by a teenager dying of cancer is warm and touching, especially in light of his recent passing. The lyrics are sweet and hopeful, even in the face of terminal illness, though the heavy subject matter might be hard for younger kids to come to terms with.

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What's the story?

Zach Sobiech was diagnosed with a cancerous bone tumor in 2009, and by December 2012, the disease had spread, forcing doctors to inform him he only had a few months to live. With his remaining time, Sobiech decided to write and record music, including \"CLOUDS,\" which has become a viral video sensation. On May 20, 2013, at age 17, Zach lost his battle with cancer, but his song has continued to spread and inspire.

Is it any good?

Catchy but not annoying, "Clouds" manages to overcome any potential sappiness through its honesty and simplicity. The words are profound and relatable, while also personal and tragic. Musically, the style is fairly standard singer-songwriter/folk rock, but Sobiech's vocals sound great, as does the instrumental production.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the song's theme. Death is a difficult subject for kids and parents to discuss. How can music and art help in approaching such challenging realities?

  • Why do you think the song has resonated so deeply with listeners? Is it the lyrics or the facts of Sobiech's personal situation or a combination of both?

Music details

  • Artist: Zach Sobiech
  • Release date: May 14, 2012
  • Type: Single
  • Label: Rock The Cause
  • Genre: Indie Rock
  • Parental advisory: No
  • Edited version available: No
  • Last updated: November 11, 2020

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