My coat is black and the moon is yellow
Here is where I get off
As you can see for yourself old girl in the Green Book
I tango down to the smoky lobby
My eyes adjust to the light
The new cashier looks like Jill St. John
Can that be right?
I'm rolling into the bar at Joey's
They're getting ready to close
And here she comes very "Kiss Me Deadly"
My life, my love, my third hand rose
Flash ahead to a yummy playback
Just you and me in a room
Double dreaming a page at a time in the Green Book

The torso rocks and the eyes are keepers
Now where'd we sample those legs?
I'm thinking Marilyn 4.0 in the Green Book
I like the neon I love the music
Anachronistic but nice
The seamless segue from fun to fever
It's a sweet device
I'm so in love with this dirty city
This crazy grid of desire
The festive icons along the way
The boardwalk, the lovers, the house on fire
She's kinda cute but a little younger
She's got the mood and the moves
It's kinda scary to dig yourself in the Green Book

Lyrics submitted by mik91

Green Book Lyrics as written by Walter Carl Becker Donald Jay Fagen

Lyrics © Wixen Music Publishing

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Green Book song meanings
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  • +2
    Song MeaningThis whole song is a cryptic shoutout to the Steely Dan fans who had two active internet forums at the time it was written. One was the "blue book" ( ) the other was referred to colloquially as the "yellow book" ( ) (fwiw, it's no longer yellow). So "Green Book" is a mash-up of yellow and blue! "The new cashier looks like Jill St. John" refers to St. Alphonso, forum moderator at the yellow book. Lots of the other lyric elements are like that...and guess whose music is being referred to as "anachronstic but nice"? :-)
    gorilla801on June 01, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think this song is about some sort of place or item (Green Book) where you can create your own fantasy. Kind of like in "Total Recall", you can choose where, her torse, eyes, legs... the "Marilyn 4.0" makes it seem like technology, one of the original fantasys or the 4th version to look like Marylin Monroe... "double dreaming a page at a time" maybe doing a little too much.

    Looks like the narrator wanted his girl to have Maryln Monroe's legs. There's a lot of recording studio references here, like playbacks, samplings, keepers... etc...
    CommentByAnonymouson January 07, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI am very confused about this book, and i cannot make it fit entirely with the "green books" in real life (perhaps the cd-thing?). But nevertheless, this is one smooooooooth song.
    mik91on April 07, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI meant "song", not book. Too much thinking messes up the system.
    mik91on April 07, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe green book is a New York city directory of sorts. here is a link to explain better than I can:)…
    steely99matton July 27, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe Green Book was also a state-by-state travel guide for African-American motorists, published from 1936 to 1966. I don't know if this song has anything to do with it (it would be a stretch), but here's a good article (and accompanying podcast) about the Green Book travel guide:
    glennbphotoon March 01, 2016   Link
  • 0
    My OpinionNaked Lunch was a "Green Book"

    My take on Steely Dan is this...

    Ever notice (?) that each Steely Dan lyric, song title or album artwork has a link to some sort of literature or author, especially the authors known as the Beats

    They seem to use works of literary art as well as pop culture and current news items throughout to tell the same story about the relationships of the Kid, Jack, Daddy and one other pretender who isn't around all the time...

    The story of Pygmalion is also ever present. But it's everywhere in our culture. Cute, young, uncultured rebel, a street wise thing meets sophistcated Mentor who tries to teach the ways of the world but mayhem, chaos and adventure follows just as in all the sit-coms and other works taken from this story. Lucy and Desi, I dream of Jeanie, My Fair Lady the Odd Couple and on and on and on

    They, the Dan keep telling us the same story over and over again in different ways but it is always the same characters, Jack, the Kid, Daddy other chimp or 'pretender' who isn't around all the time.
    j113259373on July 07, 2019   Link

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