"Birdland" as written by and Josef Erich Zawinul....
5000 light years from Birdland
But I'm still preachin' the rythym
Long gone uptight years from Birdland
And I'm still teachin' it with 'em
Years from the land of the Bird
And I am still feelin' the spirit
5000 light years from Birdland
But I know people can hear it

Bird named it, Bird made it
Bird heard it, then played it
Well stated Birdland
It happened down in Birdland

In the middle of that hub
I remember one jazz club
Where we went to pat feet
Down on 52nd Street
Everybody heard that word
That they named it after Bird
Where the rythym swooped and swirled
The jazz corner of the world
And the cats they gigged in there
Were beyond compare

Birdland, I'm singing Birdland
Birdland, old swingin' Birdland

Hey man, the music really turns you on
Really? Ya turn me around and turn me on

Down them stairs, lose them cares
Where? Down in Birdland
Total swing, Bop was king there
Down in Birdland
Bird would cook, Max would look
Where? Down in Birdland
Miles came through, trane came too there
Down in Birdland
Basie blew, Blakie too
Where? Down in Birdland
Cannonball played that hall there
Down in Birdland, yeah

There will never be nothin' such as that
No more, skoo be wah, no more
Down in Birdland, that's where it was at
I know, ah ah ah ah ah, I know
Back in them days Bop was ridin' high
Hello, heh heh heh heh heh, goodbye!

How well those cats remember their first Birdland gig
To play in Birdland is an honor we still dig
Yeah, that club was like in another world
Sure enough, yeah baby
All those cats were cookin' on
People just sat and they were steady lookin' on
Then Bird, he came and spread the word
Birdland

Yes indeed he did
Yes indeed he did
Yes indeed he did
Yes he did Parker played in Birdland
Yes he really did
Yes indeed he really did told the truth way down in Birdland
Yes indeed he did, Yard bird Parker played in Birdland
Yes indeed he really did, Charlie Parker played in Birdland

Bird named it, Bird made it
Bird heard it, then played it
Well stated Birdland
It happened down in Birdland

Everybody dug that beat
Everybody stomped their feet
Everybody digs be bop
And they'll never stop

Down them stairs, lose them cares
Yeah, down in Birdland
Total swing, Bop was king
Yeah, down in Birdland
Bird would cook, Max would look
Yeah, down in Birdland
Miles came through, trane came too
Yeah, down in Birdland
Basie blew, Blakie too
Yeah, down in Birdland
Cannonball played that hall
Yeah, down in Birdland

Down them stairs, lose them cares
Yeah, down in Birdland
Total swing, Bop was king
Yeah, down in Birdland
Bird would cook, Max would look
Yeah, down in Birdland
Miles came through, trane came too
Yeah, down in Birdland
Basie blew, Blakie too
Yeah, down in Birdland
Cannonball played that hall
Yeah, down in Birdland

Down them stairs, lose them cares
Yeah, down in Birdland
Total swing, Bop was king
Yeah, down in Birdland
Bird would cook, Max would look
Yeah, down in Birdland


Lyrics submitted by SongMeanings

"Birdland" as written by Josef Zawinul

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group, MUSIC & MEDIA INT'L, INC.

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Birdland song meanings
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    General CommentThis song is a homage to Charlie Parker and the New York Jazz club Birdland. 5000 light years from Birdland refers to how much music has changed since the mid 40's. Specifically in it's electronic department.

    But miraculously, not much has changed as to the complex and communicative rhythmic phrasing that was present in the form of bebop, the music of Charlie Parker and his contemporaries.

    Long gone uptight years from Birdland. We are uptight about other things but certainly it is not expressed in the same way by society.

    Bird named it, Bird made it
    Bird heard it, then played it
    Well stated Birdland
    It happened down in Birdland

    This is a true homage to Charlie "Yardbird" Parker. He was certainly the genius of Jazz, even today his music is dated but in no way less creative and still very alive.

    The phrase "Bird heard it and played it" refers to Parkers own recollections of how bebop was created. He mentions how it was something he was hearing in his head before he actually got around to creating it on his horn.

    "Bird would cook, Max would look" refers to the late great drummer Max Roach.
    next Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Count Basie, Art Blakie and Julian "Cannonball" Adderley are mentioned.

    Then a bit of nostalgia over how great the music was at the time. And how people were so serious about honing their craft and becoming the absolute masters of their instruments through the freedom of rhythm and improvisational stringing together of well established riffs and melodies that were collected, traded and created.

    "There will never be nothin such as that". nostalgia for sure. But there is a ring of truth to it. As the music mirrored the age and the age is gone. But truth be told, there are still many great musicians carrying on the legacy who refuse to forget and are enjoying the quest to keep the music alive and fresh.

    "Down them stairs, lose them cares", although I never went, you probably did have to walk down the stairs to get into the club. And what excitement it must have been to know you were walking down to here some of the greatest jazz musicians on the planet.
    henrywassermanon October 21, 2014   Link

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