Music Friday: Danny Vera Extols the Virtues of Hard Work in ‘Pressure Makes Diamonds’

Welcome to Music Friday when we bring you new tunes with jewelry, gemstones or precious metals in the title or lyrics. Today, Netherlands-born Danny Vera extols the virtues of hard work in his 2019 international release, “Pressure Makes Diamonds.”

The song’s basic theme draws on the fact that pure carbon can become a diamond when the element is subjected to high temperatures and extreme pressure deep within the Earth. In the song, “pressure makes diamonds” becomes a metaphor for how success can only be achieved by learning from our mistakes and powering through obstacles.

He sings, “Pressure makes diamonds, not silver or gold / It breaks to pieces the hardest of stone / And it shines brighter than the stars that you know / Pressure makes diamonds and hard work pays off.”

Later in the song, the 43-year-old singer-songwriter-musician gives a nod to the labor-intensive diamond-cutting process when making his case for having a strong work ethic: “You have to sharpen the edges, smoothen the surface / It’ll take you some time ’cause it’s rough and it’s tough.”

Written by Vera under his birth name, Danny Polfliet, “Pressure Makes Diamonds” is the ninth track of Vera’s 2019 album, Pressure Makes Diamonds 1&2.

Although he was born and raised in the southern Dutch province of Zeeland, Vera’s musical style was heavily influenced by Roy Orbison, Johnny Cash, Chris Isaak and his idol, Elvis Presley. In The Netherlands, Vera’s genre is considered “Americana” — a mix of country, rock, folk, bluegrass and blues.

Vera formed his first band in 1999 and earned a record contract with Universal Music in 2002. Vera’s career got a big boost in 2009, when he and his band landed a running gig on Holland’s popular sports talk show, Voetbal Inside.

Please check out the video of Vera’s live performance of “Pressure Makes Diamonds.” The lyrics are below if you’d like to sing along…

“Pressure Makes Diamonds”
Written by Danny Polfliet. Performed by Danny Vera.

Pressure makes diamonds, not silver or gold
It breaks to pieces the hardest of stone
And it shines brighter than the stars that you know
Pressure makes diamonds and hard work pays off

Pressure makes diamonds, no giant can hold
He thought he could carry this world on his own
But even the strongest can’t do it alone
Pressure makes diamonds and hard work pays off

You have to sharpen the edges, smoothen the surface
It’ll take you some time ’cause it’s rough and it’s tough

Then you will find what you’re looking for
They’ll appear like a falling star
Shake off the dirt and let it shine

Pressure makes diamonds, a long heavy road
First the weight on your shoulders, it’s crushing your bones
And then it gets darker than the blackest of coal
Then pressure makes diamonds, ’cause hard work pays off

You have to sharpen the edges, smoothen the surface
It’ll take you some time ’cause it’s rough and it’s tough

Then you will find what you’re looking for
They’ll appear like a falling star
Shake off the dirt and let it shine

Pressure makes diamonds, not silver or gold
It breaks to pieces the hardest of stone
And it shines brighter than the stars that you know
Pressure makes diamonds and hard work pays off
Pressure makes diamonds and hard work pays off

Credit: Image by Paul Luberti / CC BY.

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