"Bell Boy" as written by and Pete Townshend....
The beach is a place where a man can feel
He's the only soul in the world that's real
Well I see a face coming through the haze
I remember him from those crazy days
Crazy days, crazy days

Ain't you the guy who used to set the paces
Riding up in front of a hundred faces
I don't suppose you would remember me
But I used to follow you back in sixty-three

I've got a good job, and I'm newly born
You should see me dressed up in my uniform
I work in hotel, all gilt and flash
Remember the place where the doors were smashed?

Bell Boy, I got to get running now
Bell Boy, keep my lip buttoned down
Bell Boy, carry this baggage out
Bell Boy, always running at someone's pleading heel
You know how I feel
Always running at someone's heel

Some nights I still sleep on the beach
Remember when stars were in reach
I wander in early to work
Spend my day licking boots for my perks

A beach is a place where a man can feel
He's the only soul in the world that's real

Well I see a face coming through the haze
I remember him from those crazy days (crazy days, crazy days, crazy days, crazy days)

Ain't you the guy who used to set the paces
Riding up in front of a hundred faces
I don't suppose you would remember me
But I used to follow you back in sixty-three

People often change
But when I look in your eyes
You could learn a lot from
A job like mine
The secret to me
It ain't flown on a flag
I carry it behind
This pretty little badge
What says

Bell Boy I got to get running now
Bell Boy, keep my lip buttoned down
Bell Boy, carry the bloody baggage out
Bell Boy, always running at someone's heel
You know how I feel
Always running at someone's heel


Lyrics submitted by Chris_Gough, edited by PGH91

"Bell Boy" as written by Peter Dennis Blandfor Townshend

Lyrics © ABKCO MUSIC INC PETE TOWNSHEND CATALOG , FABULOUS MUSIC LTD , SPIRIT MUSIC GROUP

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Bell Boy song meanings
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14 Comments

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  • +2
    General CommentI just want to say that my last theory was whack. Smoke some weed and it will make sense.
    babathespider515on July 08, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentGtreat song, I love when Keith sings, especially the 'Some nights I still sleep on the beach' part! This song's about how Jimmy's life is fallign apart, how the people he looked up to let him down, like the ace face who became a bell boy.
    whofreak777on November 20, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis is another tune from Quadrophenia. Jimmy sees The Ace Face, the leader of the Mods in his area, now is a boot-licking bell boy instead of the rebel he claims to be. JImmy's herois just a facade.
    feedmetotheforeston December 10, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General Comment4 songs on Quadrophenia were supposed to represent the different members of The Who, and thusly the different sides of Jimmy's personality. This was supposed to represent Keith Moon. The description of this side of Jimmy's personality in the linear notes is "A bloody lunatic, I'll even carry your bags."
    87thon February 15, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentJimmy meets his former hero the Ace Face working as a bell boy and it destroys his faith in the last thing he really believes in- the Mod spirit. He has previously criticised people for not fighting against their social position (The Dirty Jobs), but now he feels that he has nothing to believe in, and he returns to the one place that means anything at all to him- the beach.
    Regos the Saneon June 15, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentJimmy is disappointed his hero has grown and matured and has a steady job, and not the rebel he once was...
    ***on December 01, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentA great song, Whofreak hit the meaning on the head.
    Also, it is a treat to hear Keith Moon doing something other than destroying drum kits! :)
    regbon March 11, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthe only reason i knew it was keith singing is because of the uncle ernie scenes from Tommy.
    ICantLeaveU2Behindon May 07, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThere is the obvious reaction that Jimmy is talking to Ace Face. (I used to follow you...) This doesn't mean that Ace is the Bellboy. Jimmy may simply have applied for a job as a Bellboy and start jumping back and forth between personalities as he speaks with his hero. The bellboy reminds me of Keith Moon. Awesome drumming at the beginning.
    babathespider515on July 08, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentKeiths vocals really make this song, it wouldn't have been as good with Roger, Pete or John
    Doug McGraveon January 20, 2007   Link

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