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The Band – Acadian Driftwood Lyrics 7 years ago
My only question is: what does "teedle um, teedle um, teedle oo" mean in French?

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Joni Mitchell – The Last Time I Saw Richard Lyrics 8 years ago
Interesting. But why is it sad?

Joni Mitchell presents two characters here: the romantic and the post-romantic. The romantic becomes the post-romantic by the end. But she won't admit it, because she still has her youth. "Only a dark cocoon before I get my wings and fly away".

But with age comes an evolution of ideals. Butterflies, though beautiful, have a very short life span. At least the caterpillar has a romantic dream to cling to. The butterfly faces nothing but its own mortality.

The reason this song is great is because it implicitly acknowledges the necessity of aging. It revolts against it, but ultimately succumbs.

Why is the truth sadder than "pretty lies"?

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Joni Mitchell – The Last Time I Saw Richard Lyrics 8 years ago
For an album called "blue", did you expect a happy ending?

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Van Morrison – Astral Weeks Lyrics 8 years ago
I think it's clear Van is making the lyrics up as he sings (even making the words up, no?).

But, should it be tossed out as just inane rambling, or do the words come from someplace deeper-- possibly an astral plain-- removed from his conscious state.

For example, what does the metaphor of standing with one's arms behind them represent? It repeats twice-- once with him, once with him watching her. Is there a point to trying to figure it out, outside of the psychological analysis of a single human being?

I think that is what this song presents. It is impossible to analyze. Either it is base, or it is sublime. There's no right answer.

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Joni Mitchell – Woman Of Heart And Mind Lyrics 8 years ago
This is probably the best written character study of a relationship I've ever heard in a song. Of all of her songs, this is the most raw, and the most honest. It's both analytical and emotional-- a combination that you never find in the male-dominated world of folk/rock music. Dylan managed both (Just Like a Woman, Idiot Wind, If You See Her Say Hello, Girl From the North Country, etc...) but never at the depth Joni paints here. First she analyzes herself; then she analyzes her guy down to his rawest self; then she concedes that she loves him anyway, despite her better instincts.

Honestly, this may be one of the greatest songs ever written.

Ever.

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Joni Mitchell – Woman Of Heart And Mind Lyrics 8 years ago
This is probably the best written character study of a relationship I've ever heard in a song. Of all of her songs, this is the most raw, and the most honest. It's both analytical and emotional-- a combination that you never find in the male-dominated world of folk/rock music. Dylan managed both (Just Like a Woman, Idiot Wind, If You See Her Say Hello, Girl From the North Country, etc...) but never at the depth Joni paints here. First she analyzes herself; then she analyzes her guy down to his rawest self; then she concedes that she loves him anyway, despite her better instincts.

Honestly, this may be one of the greatest songs ever written.

Ever.

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Bruce Springsteen – Stolen Car Lyrics 8 years ago
The Tracks version and the River version are, basically, two different songs with identical lyrics. But the central character is the same. And he's a recurring character that was born in Stolen Car and resurfaces in "Two Steps Up", "Cautious Man", "Dancing in the Dark", "Two Faces", "Straight Time", "Nothing Man", "Loose Change", and others. A man defined by his own isolation. Crushed by it. And with no escape from it.

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Bruce Springsteen – Reason To Believe Lyrics 8 years ago
I am surprised that there aren't more comments about this song other than those noting its simplicity. I couldn't disagree more. For over 30 years I've pondered the last verse. The first three verses set up the theme clearly enough: mortality, love, superstition, ritual.

But the last verse breaks the narrative. We have a wedding scene, which combines all four elements of the early verses. But then suddenly he's alone, lamenting some kind of metaphoric loss. His freedom? His youth?

It's like in the 4th verse, Springsteen takes the song and turns it upside down. The "reason to believe" is no longer ironic, but nihilistic. "Struck me kinda funny" no more.

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Bob Dylan – Boots of Spanish Leather Lyrics 8 years ago
This is actually an inspired take. Bob's duality is always at play. You have picked up on the literal very succinctly.

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Bob Dylan – You're a Big Girl Now Lyrics 8 years ago
Interesting take. I used to listen to this song in college and thought it was about lovesickness. But now, when I sing it to my daughters (who are growing up too quickly) it has taken on a new meaning for me. One that you pick up on here. So powerful. Probably my favorite song ever written.

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Little Feat – Mercenary Territory Lyrics 8 years ago
Just a note here: The Waiting for Columbus live version of this song fiddles with the lyrics a bit (probably because Lowell George was hopped up at the time), but the lyrics to the live show actually make more sense. He reverses the order of "Your nights turn into my mornings" to "my nights turn into your mornings", which, frankly, makes sense when put in context with the line preceding it: "I'm devoted for sure but my days are a blur".

Not that any of this really changes the meaning to the song. But it is one of those cases where a live performance turns a rather pedestrian song into an all-time classic (and it's not only because of Lenny Pickett's sick, 4 octave saxophone solo-- probably the greatest rock sax solo ever recorded:)

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Bob Dylan – Tangled Up in Blue Lyrics 8 years ago
"He started into dealing with slaves, and something inside of him died"

After Arthur Rimbaud's fiery romance with Paul Verlaine ended, Rimbaud, burnt out, fled Paris and wandered the earth, finally settling in East Africa. He curried favor with the local governor, the father of the future Haile Selassie, becoming a trader and exporter. For a while Rimbaud traded weapons to aide a local uprising, then later, inexplicably, became a trader in human commodity. No one knows how, or why, Rimbaud became involved in the East African slave trade, but by the time he settled in Africa he was 36 and clearly burnt out from the rigors of his loves, and by 37 he was dead.

In the Blood on the Tracks song "You're Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go", Dylan makes reference to Verlaine and Rimbaud, and the tiring nature of their tempestuous love affair. I think in Tangled Up in Blue, Dylan is turning that simile into a metaphor, imagining being a third wheel in such a life. Punch drunk-- Wounded-- and like the real Rimbaud, left with nothing to do but to keep on keeping on.

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Dire Straits – Romeo And Juliet Lyrics 8 years ago
I came to this site because I wanted to know if the real lyric was "Through the bars of a rhyme" or "Through the bars of Orion". I've seen it published both ways, and both pass the smell test (both sound nice, while at the same time neither makes a whole lot of sense). I guess there's no definitive answer on this, so I'll add my own guess:

It's "through the bars of Orion", where Orion isn't a metaphor or a cosmic place, but rather a literal place. There is an Orion County in the south of France, where I can imagine many a damaged, lovesick, lonely artist has drunk himself to an early death. So "all I do is kiss you, through the bars of Orion" is, literally, a guy going from bar to bar, lost, lonely, and hoping that maybe, just maybe, that he'll look up from his glass, and across the bar, through the low smokey light, he'll see her....

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