Our stepmom, we did everything to hate her
She took us down to the edge of Decatur
We saw the lion and the kangaroo take her
Down to the river where they caught a wild alligator

Sangamon River, it overflowed
It caused a mudslide on the banks of the operator
Civil War skeletons in their graves
They came up clapping in the spirit of the aviator

The sound of the engines and the smell of the grain
We go riding on the abolition grain train
Steven A. Douglas was a great debater
But Abraham Lincoln was the great emancipator

Chickenmobile with your rooster tail
I had my fill and I know how bad it feels
Stay awake and watch for the data
No small caterpillar, go congratulate her

Denominator, go Decatur, go Decatur
It's the great I Am
Abominate her, go Decatur, why did we hate her?
It's the great I Am

Denominator, go Decatur, anticipate her
It's the great I Am
Appreciate her, appreciate her
Stand up and thank her

Stand up and thank her
It's the great I Am
Stand up and thank her
It's the great I Am
Stand up and thank her
It's the great I Am
Stand up and thank her


Lyrics submitted by infranippies


Decatur, or Round of Applause for Your Stepmother! song meanings
Add your thoughts

59 Comments

sort form View by:
  • +3
    General CommentHow could he seriously use that rhyme scheme and so slickly pull together all of those events. It really just blows my mind how incredible he is at just about everything.
    Lightbluenesson July 07, 2005   Link
  • +2
    General CommentDon't want to...act like a know it all...but isn't Decaturs town motto 'I Am Decatur'
    MorphineColinon January 31, 2006   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI live in Decatur. Agreed, it's not the best place to live. All of my peers [the youth of Decatur] want to get out of here as soon as they can, but I'm fine. I, personally, like it here.
    The references to the lion and kangaroo are old legends; and no one knows whether or not these animals really did prowl around here long ago.
    As for the alligator, it's no legend, there's a small outlet by Lake Decatur, and it's filled with warm water, and one day some people found a live alligator in it! Granted, it was just a baby alligator, but it's interesting nonetheless.
    The Chickenmobile is one of the best known things around this town. It's owned by Krekel's, as someone already said, and they DO have the best burgers around!
    I just figured I'd pitch in a little with the background.
    Aside from that, I just love this song. It's so upbeat and catchy. :]
    Lisha_Kon March 24, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Commenta love the history of the region described in this song, the river flooding the cemetery and sending the dead bodies everywhere...that really happened in Decatur. I also like the reference to Caterpiller, which makes farming equipment and is the leading employer in the region
    slickpoetryon May 27, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti love the zoo referance.

    i miss illinois when i here this song...
    knittingon September 09, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI love this song. I'm from Decatur, and I used to work for Caterpillar! I think it's so funny how he added the Chickenmobile in there. There's a fast food place that has a car that looks like a rooster. They don't drive it anymore, but every high school senior asks them if they can take it for prom.
    youvandalon September 29, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think I fell in love with this song, simply because of:

    "Steven A. Douglas was a great debater,
    But Abraham Lincoln was the great emancipator"

    I had been listening to it on the radio and not really paying attention and then that line came out of NOWHERE; it was a done-deal, it became my new favorite song. Then I bought the album and now I am in love with Mr. Stevens. The song just WORKS because it's descriptive and informative without being dry. Plus, the glockenspiel (sp??)...well, nuff said bout that.
    casieon November 07, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General Comment"Steven A. Douglas was a great debater,
    But Abraham Lincoln was the great emancipator"

    is my favorite line as well.
    catnamedzaneon January 02, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentNope, I was wrong. 'Decatur, We Like It Here' which is actually far better.
    MorphineColinon February 01, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General Commentwhen i first listened to this song, certain lines jumped out at me. Just little things about decatur that i had forgotten. Especially the reference to the alligators... i remember thinking i've heard about that before, way back in elementary school.

    In response to the "I am" line comments:
    Decatur doesn't strike me as being an overly religous city, even in the history of it. Maybe because many decatur residents claim that the city is haunted. Once or twice i've heard it refered to as having 'more bars than churches'. Every fall 'haunted decatur' tours are available with books written of the same name. The civil war skeletons mentioned in the song have many stories about how they got to the cemetary, and that part of greenwood cemetary is known to be extremely haunted.

    About Sputnik22's speculation that the move to decatur had to do with God- i'm leafing through a short history of the area and it just seems that settlers moving west happened to settle along the Sangamon River and had no significance. The city itself is supposidly built on ancient indian burial grounds and during a harsh winter a group of settlers was rumored or have resorted to cannibolism.

    I always figured that the last lines were merely rhymes. I now doubt it, though.
    meem4on March 06, 2006   Link

Add your thoughts

Log in now to tell us what you think this song means.

Don’t have an account? Create an account with SongMeanings to post comments, submit lyrics, and more. It’s super easy, we promise!

Back to top
explain