"Back to the Wall" as written by and Steve Earle....
Sometimes in the evenings I start to get that feeling
Like I'm empty inside
I know I'm doin' good now but tonight I'm headed downtown
Down by the riverside

I sit underneath the freeway with an old friend from the old days
And a bottle of wine
He used to call me "Big Time", said he knew someday that I'd shine
Said he'd seen all the signs
He said

Keep yourself to yourself
Keep your bedroll dry
And boy you never can tell
What the shadows hide
Keep one eye on the ground
Pick up whatever you find
'Cause you've got no place to fall
When your back's to the wall

He's gettin' old and it's showin' so I asked him how it's goin'
He said "I've seen better I guess
I've been rained on, I've been frozen, but this here's the life I've chosen
If it just wasn't for the loneliness"

Now this river suits me to a T. but if you're trying to raise a family
This it ain't no place to be
Hell there's a kid down by the dump there, ought to be in grade school somewhere
Now he hangs out with me, now I told him

Keep yourself to yourself
Keep your bedroll dry
And boy you never can tell
What the shadows hide
Keep one eye on the ground
Pick up whatever you find
'Cause you've got no place to fall
When your back's to the wall

Well we finished off the bottle and I told him,
"Joe I think I ought to be headed uptown
Well it was late, and I'd been drinkin', drivin' home I got to thinkin'
'Bout what's been going down

'Cause they're nervous down on Wall Street, but they're trying to keep it upbeat
Or maybe they just don't care
Down at the river eyes are burnin' cause they feel the tables turnin'
So if you wind up down there

Just keep yourself to yourself
Keep your bedroll dry
And boy you never can tell
What the shadows hide
Keep one eye on the ground
Pick up whatever you find
'Cause you've got no place to fall
When your back's to the wall


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"Back to the Wall" as written by Steve Earle

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., Universal Music Publishing Group

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Back to the Wall song meanings
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