Are we the fools for being suprised that a silence could end with no sound
Like the silent movie era like with snow like when Sal's burned
down
Well yeah there was noise but nothing to mark the passing on
Of that great unspoken chance we had found
Where the night's end came well-trod and familiar
Like the Charlie Chapin walk that fades to black
And there wasn't anyone trying to sell their souls
They were only trying to buy them back
They were only trying to buy them back

Well yeah there was a Sal he walked with bulging pockets round town
Either he was up to no good or he just got excited watching things burn down
Well I guess he got the idea if you hold a chunk of gold in your
hand now
For once in your life you can throw some weight around
And Sal you slimeball sell-out how can we blame you
We all want something to put our fingers on
And you never know the true throne that you've lost
Till the vinyl barstools are gone
Till the vinyl barstools are gone

If you toss around some words you might say that
Sal was carrying a torch for the mob
But the mob's gone too yeah the only sign of them left
Is on every screen at the multiplex and we go there no prob hey
'cause there ain't no cowboys in this Connecticut town
No not anymore, no, not since Sal's burned down
Once you'd dip your tin cup down in the muse's watering hole
Or pioneer a new patch of common ground
Then you'd lie on your time-traveled bedroll
Quite amazed at the expansive terrain
And if anyone said that you'd never have fame and fortune just
that bar
You know you'd ride that way again
I bet you'd ride that way again


Lyrics submitted by aur0ra, edited by shiftinshapes

When Sal's Burned Down song meanings
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3 Comments

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  • +2
    General CommentI think it's "Are we the fools for being surprised".

    The first verse is about how all the great things of the old days have faded away. Then it goes on to talk about Sal, who had this great place but he lost his 'throne' beause he burnt the place down for insurance money. He thought money would make it possible for him to throw some weight around, but he's just a sell out. The speaker is disgusted with the whole thing and misses the good old days when she could go down to that bar.
    VampedVixenon November 07, 2004   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationI think this song is a real hidden gem of Dar's (and one of my favorites)!
    Okay, this song is not only great at the surface (both lyrically and melodically) but it has a transcending value that goes way beyond the surface of her words.
    On the surface; Dar sings of a real bar where, years ago, she and her friends would spend many nights having fun. The bar was eventually burned to the ground by its owner, Sal, for the insurance money (perhaps to pay back a loan to the ‘Mob’). Although she is angry “…and Sal, you slime ball sell-out”, she forgives this act “…how can we blame you? We all want something to put our fingers on.” But Dar stays focused on the loss of the bar and ends the song with a statement that she’d trade her fame and fortune to have it all the way it once was.
    This song is a memory and (like most memories) the snapshot Dar describes is of an innocent time, where nothing bad happened and young people were trying to find their own identities “There wasn’t anyone trying to sell their souls they were only trying to buy them back.” Dar also illustrates a very intelligent use of word-play. “… and you never know the true throne that you’ve lost ‘til the vinyl barstools are gone.” I love the clicky way that this string of words sounds “the-true-throne-that-you’ve-lost”! Dar uses “vinyl barstools” instead of “final barstools” – I think she is describing how something so simple (vinyl barstools) have become a real symbol of lost innocence. In the final verse she also sings the same clicky word-play with “…once you dip your tin-cup down in the muse’s watering hole” (growing older and more experienced). She uses “expansive terrain” instead of “expensive” which takes the focus from money to the intangible loss of innocence.
    midnight1963on November 12, 2013   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationI think this song is a real hidden gem of Dar's (and one of my favorites)!
    Okay, this song is not only great at the surface (both lyrically and melodically) but it has a transcending value that goes way beyond the surface of her words.
    On the surface; Dar sings of a real bar where, years ago, she and her friends would spend many nights having fun. The bar was eventually burned to the ground by its owner, Sal, for the insurance money (perhaps to pay back a loan to the ‘Mob’). Although she is angry “…and Sal, you slime ball sell-out”, she forgives this act “…how can we blame you? We all want something to put our fingers on.” But Dar stays focused on the loss of the bar and ends the song with a statement that she’d trade her fame and fortune to have it all the way it once was.
    This song is a memory and (like most memories) the snapshot Dar describes is of an innocent time, where nothing bad happened and young people were trying to find their own identities “There wasn’t anyone trying to sell their souls they were only trying to buy them back.” Dar also illustrates a very intelligent use of word-play. “… and you never know the true throne that you’ve lost ‘til the vinyl barstools are gone.” I love the clicky way that this string of words sounds “the-true-throne-that-you’ve-lost”! Dar uses “vinyl barstools” instead of “final barstools” – I think she is describing how something so simple (vinyl barstools) have become a real symbol of lost innocence. In the final verse she also sings the same clicky word-play with “…once you dip your tin-cup down in the muse’s watering hole” (growing older and more experienced). She uses “expansive terrain” instead of “expensive” which takes the focus from money to the intangible loss of innocence.
    midnight1963on November 12, 2013   Link

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