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Layered Storytelling in Music

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by Songbird, Sep 14, 2017.


Which song tells the best story?

  1. Esther (Phish)

    2 vote(s)
  2. Paradise by the Dashboard Light (Meat Loaf)

    3 vote(s)
  3. Scenes from an Italian Restaurant (Billy Joel)

    3 vote(s)
  4. Other

    8 vote(s)
  1. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    I have room for only one sweaty and conflicted male in my music catalogue. lol

    PCLoadLetter likes this.
  2. bumpy mcgee

    bumpy mcgee Well-Known Member

    As far as a series of songs telling one story, 'The Ballad of Cleopatra' is pretty good.
  3. Corky Ramirez up on 94th St.

    Corky Ramirez up on 94th St. Well-Known Member

    Jazz department: "The Clown" by Charles Mingus. Interesting sidenote: The narrator is Jean Shepherd, of "A Christmas Story" fame.

    Yeah, it's different, but I was trying to think of something other than "My Old School."

    Also: "Papa Was a Rolling Stone" (I heard The Temptations hated this song at first, but as it rocketed up the charts, they didn't hate it so much), "Hurricane" by Bob Dylan, and "The Last Time I Saw Richard" by Joni Mitchell are ones whose lyrics I enjoy.
  4. micropolitan guy

    micropolitan guy Well-Known Member

    I would also suggest "Copperhead Road."
  5. Huggy

    Huggy Well-Known Member

    "Too Drunk to Fuck" - Dead Kennedys
  6. SpeedTchr

    SpeedTchr Well-Known Member

  7. Bubbler

    Bubbler Well-Known Member

    Every time he says, "I'M A LUMBERJACKER, BABY!" it opens up new synapses in my gray matter. Contrasted with the delicious subtext of the chain saw solo, this wins for me.

    Like Nietzsche's Ubermensch, the lead singer, or dare I say it? Tome intrepreter of Jackyl, screams to all and sundry that he is the universe. These are his works, despair.

    And yet, the chainsaw doesn't lie. It shreds the hubris of the SuperJackyl Man. It symbolizes, with bloody finality, that God is indeed very alive, and man is not master of his own destiny after all.

    But seriously, how the fuck has no one brought up a Bob Dylan song yet? The Idiot Wind blows this thread. From the Grand Coulee Dam to the Capitol.
  8. TigerVols

    TigerVols Well-Known Member

    The distant echo
    Of faraway voices boarding faraway trains
    To take them home to
    The ones that they love and who love them forever
    The glazed, dirty steps, repeat my own and reflect my thoughts
    Cold and uninviting, partially naked
    Except for toffee wrappers and this morning's paper
    Mr. Jones got run down
    Headlines of death and sorrow, they tell of tomorrow
    Madmen on the rampage
    And I'm down in the tube station at midnight
    I fumble for change, and pull out the Queen
    Smiling, beguiling
    I put in the money and pull out a plum
    Behind me
    Whispers in the shadows, gruff blazing voices
    Hating, waiting
    "Hey boy" they shout, "have you got any money?"
    And I said, "I've a little money and a takeaway curry
    I'm on my way home to my wife
    She'll be lining up the cutlery, you know she's expecting me
    Polishing the glasses and pulling out the cork"
    I'm down in the tube station at midnight

    I first felt a fist, and then a kick
    I could now smell their breath
    They smelt of pubs and wormwood scrubs
    And too many right wing meetings
    My life swam around me
    It took a look and drowned me in its own existence
    The smell of brown leather
    It blended in with the weather
    Filled my eyes, ears, nose and mouth, it blocked all my senses
    Couldn't see, hear, speak any longer
    I'm down in the tube station at midnight
    I said I was down in the tube station at midnight

    The last thing that I saw as I lay there on the floor
    Was "Jesus saves" painted by an atheist nutter
    And a British rail poster read "have an away day, a cheap holiday
    Do it today"
    I glanced back on my life, and thought about my wife
    'Cause they took the keys, and she'll think it's me
    I'm down in the tube station at midnight
    The wine will be flat and the curry's gone cold
    I'm down in the tube station at midnight
    Don't want to go down in a tube station at midnight
    Don't want to go down in a tube station at midnight
    Don't want to go down in a tube station at midnight
  9. HC

    HC Well-Known Member

    When I was a young man I carried my pack
    And I lived the free life of a rover
    From the murrays green basin to the dusty outback
    I waltzed my matilda all over
    Then in nineteen fifteen my country said son
    It's time to stop rambling 'cause there's work to be
    So they gave me a tin hat and they gave me a gun
    And they sent me away to the war
    And the band played Waltzing Matilda
    As we sailed away from the quay
    And amidst all the tears and the shouts and the
    We sailed off to Gallipoli
    How well I remember that terrible day
    When the blood stained the sand and the water
    And how in that hell that they called suvla bay
    We were butchered like lambs at the slaughter
    Johnny Turk he was ready, he primed himself well
    He showered us with bullets, he rained us with
    And in five minutes flat he'd blown us all to hell
    Nearly blew us right back to Australia
    But the band played waltzing Matilda
    As we stopped to bury our slain
    And we buried ours and the Turks buried theirs
    Then it started all over again
    Now those who were living did their best to survive
    In that mad world of blood, death and fire
    And for seven long weeks I kept myself alive
    While the corpses around me piled higher
    Then a big Turkish shell knocked me arse over tit
    And when I woke up in my hospital bed
    And saw what it had done, Christ I wished I was
    Never knew there were worse things than dying
    And no more I'll go waltzing Matilda
    To the green bushes so far and near
    For to hump tent and pegs, a man needs two legs
    No more waltzing Matilda for me
    So they collected the cripples, the wounded and
    And they shipped us back home to Australia
    The legless, the armless, the blind and insane
    Those proud wounded heroes of suvla
    And as our ship pulled into circular quay
    I looked at the place where me legs used to be
    And thank Christ there was nobody waiting for me
    To grieve and to mourn and to pity
    And the band played Waltzing Matilda
    As they carried us down the gangway
    But nobody cheered, they just stood and stared
    And they turned all their faces away
    And now every April I sit on my porch
    And I watch the parade pass before me
    I see my old comrades, how proudly they march
    Reliving the or their dreams of past glory
    i see the old men, all twisted and torn
    The forgotten heroes of a forgotten war
    And the young people ask me, "what are they
    Marching for?"
    And I ask myself the same question
    And the band plays Waltzing Matilda
    And the old men still answer to the call
    But year after year their numbers get fewer
    Some day no one will march there at all
    Waltzing Matilda, Waltzing Matilda
    Who'll go a-Waltzing Matilda with me?
    YankeeFan likes this.
  10. TigerVols

    TigerVols Well-Known Member

    Best story about heroin use?

  11. Huggy

    Huggy Well-Known Member

    This one definitely needs lyrics included, the greatest song ever written about a day at the track

    Thanks and praises
    Thanks to Jesus
    I bet on the Bottle of Smoke
    I went to hell
    And to the races
    To bet on the Bottle of Smoke

    The day being clear
    The sky being bright
    He came up on the left
    Like a streak of light
    Like a drunken fuck
    On a Saturday night
    Up came the Bottle of Smoke

    Twenty fucking five to one
    Me gambling days are done
    I bet on a horse called the Bottle of Smoke
    And my horse won

    Stewards inquiries
    Swift and fiery
    I had the Bottle of Smoke
    Inquisitions and suppositions
    I had the Bottle of Smoke

    Fuck the stewards
    A trip to Lourdes
    Might give the old fuckers
    The power of sight
    Screaming springers and stoppers
    And call out coppers
    But the money still gleams in my hand like a light

    Bookies cursing
    Cars reversing
    I had the Bottle of Smoke
    Glasses steaming
    Vessels bursting
    I had the Bottle of Smoke
    Slip a fifty to the wife
    And for each brat a crisp new five
    To give me a break on a Saturday night
    When I had the Bottle of Smoke
    Priests and maidens
    Drunk as pagans
    They had the Bottle of Smoke
    Sins forgiven and celebrations
    They had the Bottle of Smoke

    Fuck the Yanks
    And drink their wives
    The moon is clear
    The sky is bright
    I'm happy as the horses shite
    Up came the Bottle of Smoke
  12. Riptide

    Riptide Well-Known Member

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