Prayer of the Refugee

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"Prayer of the Refugee"
Rise Against - Prayer of the Refugee Cover.jpeg
Single by Rise Against
from the album The Sufferer & the Witness
Released December 6, 2006
Format Digital single
Recorded 2006 at the Blasting Room, Fort Collins, Colorado
Genre Melodic hardcore, punk rock
Length 3:27
Label Geffen
Writer(s) Tim McIlrath
Producer(s) Bill Stevenson, Jason Livermore
Rise Against singles chronology
"Ready to Fall"
"Prayer of the Refugee"
"The Good Left Undone"

"Prayer of the Refugee" is the second single from Rise Against's album The Sufferer & the Witness, and was released worldwide in 2006. The song was originally titled "Diaspora", with advance copies of the album using that title instead of "Prayer of the Refugee".[citation needed] The song impacted radio on November 14, 2006.[1]

The song was certified platinum by the RIAA on July 15th 2013 (making it their 2nd platinum single after Savior).[2]

The song is featured as a re-recorded bonus track in the video game Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock. The song is also featured in Slednecks 9 DVD. It is used in "The Compound" segment of the movie.

The album version of the song is available as DLC for the Rock Band series along with "Savior" and "Re-Education (Through Labor)".

Song Meaning[edit]

The song begins with a conversation between a refugee and his son. The refugee talks about the good life he, and his people, once had, but no longer do. The chorus is the refugee calling out, saying not to help him, as carrying himself is all he has left. He says that all those who have tried to "help" in the past have merely let him down again.

The next verse is about how these refugees are quietly trying to change the world in the background, in subtle ways. In the final verse, he tells the son to step out and change the world for the better.

Music video[edit]

Directed by Tony Petrossian, the video moves from scenes of the band playing and walking around in a warehouse to scenes of young children and foreign people making and packaging goods such as shoes, bananas, jeans, and remote controlled cars. It ends with scenes of the foreign people placing 'Made In USA' and American flag labels on packaged boxes, and the band members toppling various shelves containing such goods, the broken and fallen goods spelling out "Fair trade", and the video ending in an abrupt change to a black screen.

The video was shot in the "All-American Home Center" store in Downey, California.[citation needed] The video was also the last to feature Chris Chasse as the band's lead guitarist.

Chart overview[edit]

The song reached number seven on the Billboard alternative rock chart. This is their first single to reach the top 10 on the chart, beating 2004's Swing Life Away.

Chart (2006) Peak
U.S. Billboard Hot Modern Rock Tracks 7[3]
Canadian Hot 100 21


Region Certification Certified units/Sales
United States (RIAA)[4] Platinum 1,000,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone



  1. ^ " Alternative eWeekly". AllAccess. November 7, 2006. Retrieved July 1, 2016. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ [1] Retrieved on October 15, 2011.
  4. ^ "American single certifications – Rise Against – Prayer of the Refugee". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH

External links[edit]