"The Sweet Part of the City" as written by and Tad Jason Kubler Craig Finn....
Back when we were living up on Hennepin
She kept threatening to turn us in
At night she mostly liked us, we used to pass around the thermos
Some nights she was gorgeous

We were living it
We delivered it
We didn't feel a thing
We were living in

The sweet part of the city
The part with the bars and restaurants
We used to meet underneath the marquees, we used to nod off in the matinees
She always claimed that she was from Tennessee, and now it seems to me

Like distance doesn't equal rate and time no more
It's like gravity doesn't apply
No, everything sparkles and appears like we're on wheels
It was dark but I guess that's the deal

St. Theresa showed up wearing see-thru, it was standard issue
We went out to get some more wine
But it's a long haul to the corner store from the center of the universe
When you can't get your car off the curb

We were living it
We delivered it
We didn't feel a thing
We were in heaven in

The sweet part of the city
The part with the bars and restaurants
And so we shot ourselves out into outer space, it was tough to place the aftertaste
It was stark but it was spacious

It's a long way from Cedar Riverside to Cedar Sinai
Three times St. Paul to Cheyenne
And it's a long way from Sacramento too
We were bored so we started a band

We like to play for you
We like to play for you
We like to play for you
We like to play for you

Lyrics submitted by goodreverend

"The Sweet Part of the City" as written by Tad Jason Kubler Craig Finn


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The Sweet Part of the City song meanings
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  • +1
    General CommentThe first line is:
    "Back when we were living up on Hennepin."
    It's a street in Minneapolis
    controlfreakon April 18, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General Comment"like distance doesn't equal (??) no more." is "like distance doesn't equal rate and time no more."
    SisterCityon April 20, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentGood team work guys!

    This is without a doubt my favorite song on the new record. The guitar in it is some of my favorite The Hold Steady has ever done. This is what Rock and Roll should be.
    controlfreakon April 21, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think it's "It's a long way from cedar-riverside to cedar sinai, three times St Paul to Cheyenne."
    Josh1126Hon April 22, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentCedar-Riverside is a hospital in Minneapolis. Cedar Sinai is a renowned hospital in Los Angeles.
    goodreverendon April 19, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti'm finding lots of tracks on Heaven is Whenever have the same kind of nostalgia in the lyrics as in Stay Positive. in Multitude of Casualties it was "we spent a few years nodding off in matinees"; in Same Kooks it became "we slept it off in the matinees"; now it's "we used to nod off in the matinees". used to. it's like how "we had some massive nights" is so much worldwearier in Joke About Jamaica than in Massive Nights, although the words are exactly the same.

    elsewise: "some nights she looked gorgeous" reminds me of First Night; i make this the third THS song to mention the no-doubt great state of Tennessee; "St. Theresa showed up wearing see-through" reminds me of the antecedent of Stevie Nix turning up in a long black shawl; i don't know what it is about the St. Paul to Cheyenne journey but it turned in Yeah Sapphire too; and obviously "we were bored so we started a band" refers back to Positive Jam, though this time in the first-person plural rather than the singular.
    anonymiadon May 04, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think the oohs at "We like to play for you" is highly reminiscent of the opening guitar on Stuck Between Stations. I don't know if it was meant to be this way or not, but I love it.
    zefferonion December 12, 2010   Link
  • 0
    Link(s)"Tad: That was one of the first songs, maybe besides “Lord, I’m Discouraged,” that was in an alternative tuning. The idea for it came up as an exercise for me to learn how to play slide guitar. And listening back, it’s obvious that I don’t do it very well. It never really gets super huge. It’s just kind of laid-back and more vibey — if I can use that word, which sounds kind of douchey.

    Craig: Yeah, and that’s a great one. I was thinking a lot about this idea of a young person in their twenties, how living in the cool part of town is enough. You know what I mean? Your troubles aren’t that big if you can go out and get a couple of beers, if you live near the cool bars."

    akablondie714on April 10, 2014   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThere's an obvious (and I would venture to guess, intentional) parallel between this song and Van Morrison's "Saint Dominic's Preview."

    SPotC: "It's a long way from Cedar-Riverside to Cedar Sinai, three times St. Paul to Cheyenne/ And it's a long way from Sacramento, too."
    SDP: "And it's a long way to Buffalo/ It's a long way to Belfast city, too."
    bfreebyon September 16, 2014   Link

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