"Amsterdam" as written by and John/ono Lennon....
In the port of Amsterdam
There's a sailor who sings
Of the dreams that he brings
From the wide open sea
In the port of Amsterdam
There's a sailor who sleeps
While the river bank weeps
To the old Willow tree

In the port of Amsterdam
There's a sailor who dies
Full of beer, full of cries
In a drunken town fight
In the port of Amsterdam
There's a sailor who's born
On a hot muggy morn
By the dawn's early light

In the port of Amsterdam
Where the sailors all meet
There's a sailor who eats
Only fish heads and tails
And he'll show you his teeth
That have rotted too soon
That can haul up the sails
That can swallow the moon

And he yells to the cook
With his arms open wide
"Hey, bring me more fish
Throw it down by my side"
And he wants so to belch
But he's too full to try
So he stands up and laughs
And he zips up his fly

In the port of Amsterdam
You can see sailors dance
Paunches bursting their pants
Grinding women to porch
They've forgotten the tune
That their whiskey voice croaked
Splitting the night
With the roar of their jokes
And they turn and they dance
And they laugh and they lust
Till the rancid sound of the accordion bursts
And then out of the night
With their pride in their pants
And the sluts that they tow
Underneath the street lamp

In the port of Amsterdam
There's a sailor who drinks
And he drinks and he drinks
And he drinks once again
He'll drink to the health
Of the whores of Amsterdam
Who've given their bodies
To a thousand other men
Yeah, they've bargained their virtue
Their goodness all gone
For a few dirty coins
When he just can't go on
Throws his nose to the sky
Aims it up above
And he pisses like I cry
On the unfaithful love

In the port of Amsterdam
In the port of Amsterdam


Lyrics submitted by SomethingClever

"Amsterdam" as written by Mort Shuman Jacques Roman Brel

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

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Amsterdam song meanings
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8 Comments

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  • 0
    General CommentHuge Bowie fan--this has got to be the worst song he has ever written.
    Motown1on December 08, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentBowie didn't write this song.
    savethetrees890on December 10, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentHaha. Totally describes Amsterdam. Ahem just kidding. I, like Motown, happen to be a huge Bowie fan and I agree...this is one of the most awful songs that he's sang. Oh savethetrees is also right...Bowie did not right this song. I believe it was either Jaques Briel or Bertolt Brecht.
    davidbowiefan1on September 16, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI'll have to agree with Motown on this one. This song and most of Never Let Me Down, with the exception of Time Will Crawl.
    davidbowiefan1on January 13, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentForget the last comment.
    davidbowiefan1on August 21, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI disagree. This song is great.
    The meaning is kinda obvious.
    heartshotsupernovaon September 09, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWow, I'm surprised. I love this song, especially the BBC Radio version.
    evil_laugheron November 14, 2008   Link
  • 0
    Song FactThis song wasn't written by John Lennon, it's a song originally written in French by Belgian singer Jacques Brel. This version is a translation, nearly word by word and with the same melody.
    newaccounton November 06, 2015   Link

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