"Sloth" as written by and R. Thompson D. Swarbrick....

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Sloth song meanings
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  • 0
    General CommentThis song is about me. I know because of the title.
    epiwooshon August 30, 2013   Link
  • 0
    Song MeaningSome of Richard Thompson's lyrics can be obscure (eg Now Be Thankful) but I always assumed this was about war, maybe Napoleonic. "Call to your colours, friend" could be military, as in trooping the colour?

    As for the title, sloth could refer to the slow tempo.
    cscheybeleron January 18, 2014   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSloth is one of the seven deadly sins. It's often considered to be laziness but it is also apathy and I believe the title relates better to apathy than laziness.

    The lyrics seem to concern two unpleasant events: Commencement of war and abandonment by a loved one.

    The response is the same to both - a roll on the drum. The particular line, "Don't you call to me", is explicit in stating that the singer does not wish to be a part of it.

    I believe there is a secondary meaning in that music and the playing of music is greater than world events in that it allows the performer to step away from the everyday realities. The song lyrics surround a much longer instrumental section and the group are known to extend and develop this section into a longer improvisational jam. I wonder if the lyric is serving the purpose of allowing the musicians to enter into the frame of mind required for that type of improvisational playing?
    PBAon August 24, 2014   Link

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