Matchbox Twenty’s Rob Thomas explains why it’s “really special” to have your very own pack of “Wild Dogs”

Jimmy Fontaine

Matchbox Twenty‘s comeback single from Where the Light Goes, their first new album in 10 years, is “Wild Dogs (Running in a Slow Dream).” Despite what the title might suggest, the song isn’t actually about wild dogs. Instead, frontman Rob Thomas explains, it’s about that time when you’re young and you finally find your “people.”

In the chorus, Rob sings, “And when you hear it calling/Out underneath your window/There’s a world outside that’s waiting/Saying come on, come on, come on!” What he’s singing about, he says, is something that actually happened to him, and to a lot of other kids, too.

“If you’re a kid and you grew up in the suburbs at all, there’s a lot of nights where it’s, like, one in the morning and your friends are knocking on your window for you to sneak out the window and go out, y’know, and make bad decisions!” Rob tells ABC Audio.

But more generally, Rob says, the song is about how important those friends are to have when you’re that age, especially if you’re not one of the “cool kids.”

“If you’re a little off and you’re kind of a misfit when you’re young…when you finally do find that other group of misfits, usually they’re more creative than others,” Rob explains.

“They’re a little more sensitive — like you are — and they’re more welcoming of you and all of your flaws and all of your differences,” he notes. “And so when you find that group that makes you feel like that, there’s something really, really special about it.”

On Friday, Matchbox Twenty released an acoustic version of “Wild Dogs (Running In a Slow Dream).” Where the Light Goes, the band’s first album since 2012’s North, is due May 26.

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