"Empty Glass" as written by and Pete Townshend....
Why was I born today
Life is useless like Ecclesiastes say
I never had a chance
But opportunity's now in my hands

I stand with my guitar
All I need is a mirror
Then I'm a star
I'm so sick of dud TV
Next time you switch on
You might see me, oh.what a thrill for you

I've been there and gone there
I've lived there and bummed there
I've spun there, I gave there
I drank there and I slaved there

I've had enough of the way things been done
Every man on a razors edge
Someone has used us to kill with the same gun
Killing each other by driving a wedge

[Chorus:]
My life's a mess I wait for you to pass
I stand here at the bar, I hold an empty glass

Why was I born today
Life is useless like Ecclesiastes say
I didn't get a chance
Opportunity's in my hand

I stand with my guitar
All I needs a mirror
Then I'm a star
I'm so sick of dud TV
Next time you switch on
You might see me

I've been there and gone there
I've lived there and bummed there
I've spun there, I gave there
I drank there and I slaved there

I've had enough of the way things have been done
Every man on a razors edge
Someone has used us to shoot with the same gun
We where killing each other by driving a wedge

[Chorus]

Don't worry smile and dance
You just can work life out
Don't let down moods entrance you
Take the wine and shout

[Chorus]


Lyrics submitted by ButNeverOutgunned

"Empty Glass" as written by Peter Dennis Blandfor Townshend

Lyrics © Spirit Music Group

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Empty Glass song meanings
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4 Comments

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  • 0
    General CommentPrehaps the best song on this album. It continues to grow on me a little more every time I hear it.
    Pete Townsend seems to write from a composite of his own life and the generic sort of bleakness of blue-collar life.
    Major Valoron August 24, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI love this song...though the version I always listen to is from the "Who Are You" album (not on the original release, I believe), you can still tell it's Pete singing. Great song, I could listen to it over and over!
    Drdestructoon September 03, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe Demo version on the CD of "Who are you" with the Who providing extra instrumentation is far better than the version on Pete's Solo album for a few reasons: 1. John Entwistle on Bass
    2. Keith Moon on drums
    and 3. unchanged lyrics.

    there is a line in the original demo version that goes:

    Someone has used us to shoot with the same gun
    Killing each other as we jump off the ledge.

    this was changed to what is documented above, but it seems more in touch with that feeling of depression and alchoholism.
    regbon October 06, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Comment'Empty Glass' provides Townshend's condensed rock'n'roll adaptation of the Book of Ecclesiastes. "The spark-off for the song was when I read Ecclesiastes again, and it was so powerful," Pete told Trouser Press. "You've got King Solomon talking about how after he's fucked everybody and had everything and gone through everything, the only piece of advice he's got is that life is useless. But it also contains some great inspirational poetry: 'There is a time', and all that. It really reminded me of a lot of Persian Sufi poetry - that it's only in desperation that you become spiritually open..."

    "Empty Glass is a direct jump from Persian Sufi poetry," Townshend told Greil Marcus in explaining the album's title. "Hafiz - he was a poet in the 14th century - used to talk about God's love being wine, and that we yearn to be intoxicated, and that the heart is like an empty cup. You hold up the heart, and hope that God's grace will fill your cup with his wine. You stand in the tavern, a useless soul waiting for the barman to give you a drink - the barman being God. It's also Meher Baba talking about the fact that the heart is like a glass, and that God can't fill it up with his love - if it's already filled with love for yourself."

    "Spirituality to me is about the asking, not the answers," he elaborated to Trouser Press. "I still find it a very romantic proposition, that you hold up an empty glass and say, 'Right. If you're there, fill it.' The glass is empty because you have emptied it. You were in it originally. That's why it's only when you're at your lowest ebb, when you believe yourself to be nothing, when you believe yourself to be worthless, when you're in a state of futility, that you produce an empty glass. Normally, you occupy the glass. By emptying or vacating the glass, you give God a chance to enter it. You get yourself out of the way...you ask for help.


    -quoted from Who Are You: The Life of Pete Townshend by Mark Wilkerson
    QuadrophenicPinkon June 29, 2010   Link

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