"Emerald Street" as written by George Pettit, Jordan Hastings, Chris Steele, Dallas Green and Wade Macneil....
Pregnant teens on the Barton street bus
Homeless people living off crust
And there's a beat-up town car, it's starting to rust
Hard soles are kicking up dust
Half a million people living in the corpse of the brown brick 50's
To the north, all the small town outcasts are now big city bourgeoisie

All the boys in the halfway houses
Wave to the girls of Emerald Street

Our calloused fingers, blood red on the brick, but we hold on (hold on)
We'll never falter, though they want us to slip, we hold on (hold on)

The desperate, downtown stealing bikes
Drunks in the village are picking fights
So, police like the streets to read them their rights
No controlling hot summer nights
The sun goes down on the edge of town, at the end of everyday
We sit and watch the stacks on fire, to the east across the bay

All the boys in the halfway houses
Wave to the girls of Emerald Street

Our calloused fingers, blood red on the brick, but we hold on (hold on)
We'll never falter, though they want us to slip, we hold on (hold on)

There's something in the church belfry
On the corner of Victoria and king
And it screams out into the night
It sings this city's plight

All the boys in the halfway houses
Wave to the girls of Emerald Street

Hold on, hold on

Our calloused fingers, blood red on the brick, but we hold on (hold on)
We'll never falter, though they want us to slip, we hold on (hold on)


Lyrics submitted by aristuma21

"Emerald Street" as written by Dallas Green Chris Steele

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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Emerald Street song meanings
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8 Comments

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  • +2
    General CommentThis song is obviously about Hamilton. There are all kinds of references to streets in Hamilton, as well as the Bay and "the village" which probably refers to Hess Village.
    BlameHoffmanon June 22, 2009   Link
  • +1
    Song MeaningThis song IS indeed about Hamilton, Ontario. George grew up on Emerald street which is known for having prostitutes walk up and down it, stopping at Barton. Barton street is basically the line that divides working class downtown from cracktown. I, personally, live on the mountain where George lives now and going downtown gets sadder everyday.

    The dunks in the village pertains to Hess Village as BlameHoffman said and "the stacks on fire, to the east across the bay" are the smoke stacks of stelco and dofasco that usually have a few open flames burning constantly on top of the highest stacks and you can see it from mountain brow.

    The Church in the Belfry on Victoria and King is St Patricks. Before this song even came out, my friend and I were walking down king street and turned onto Victoria when we did hear a scream come from the damn church. We weren't sure if it was bats or someone actually screaming but I now think it's haunted and it's cool to know that George has heard it too and we're not totally crazy.

    So yes, this entire song is about Hamilton which isn't as craptastic as people make it out to be.
    blisscenton July 27, 2009   Link
  • +1
    My Interpretation"Hard-up people living off crust"

    I hear it as...

    "Homeless people living off crust"

    Great song! thanks for the lyrics!
    flametrooperon January 01, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThey really hate Hamilton, don't they? Listen to This Could Be Anywhere and Mailbox Arson if you don't believe me.
    Wambson June 23, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWhere is Hamilton?
    That where they grew up?
    NY or canada?
    arlowfon July 03, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt's in Ontario
    BlameHoffmanon July 03, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti realized i like this
    song...
    =P
    aristuma21on August 28, 2009   Link
  • -1
    General CommentThats like excatly how I feel, not their best but still a Classic album.. It really does grow on you. I listened to this album everyday maybe even twice, and just everyday I was like this is my new favorite song, no this is. Thats what Alexisonfire does. What was it 6 years ago when Counter Parts and number them came out I was making fun of how bad that song was then I showed my friends and I was like "Hey... I think I like this.." I also saw them in concert here in Southern Ontario they rock my socks off I was right in the front crowd.
    IsThIsRealLifeon July 05, 2009   Link

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