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Category: Music – Weird

Rock Lyrics Vol. 21 – Same As It Ever Was

I have always liked this song, with its’ off-beat style. And I use “off-beat” not just as a saying, but because it was recorded ‘off-beat’. Brian Eno, a composer and producer (also a member of the band Roxy Music), had some of the members of Talking Heads start the song on the ‘1’ beat (as normal) and the rest started on the ‘3’ beat, giving the song “a funny balance within it. It has really two centers of gravity: their ‘1’ and my ‘1.’”

Once In A Lifetime “was named one of the 100 most important American musical works of the 20th century by National Public Radio and is also included in The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll.”  Does that seem surprising to you? It does to me. I always viewed this tune as a simple, fun song to do the Egyptian dance to, never having been aware of its’ importance.

I remember it most from Much Music, who played the video often. Which is odd, because Much Music didn’t come on the scene until late 1984, and this song was recorded in 1980, released in 1981 as the first single on Talking Head’s 4th album, Remain In Light. The video I am including in this post is the full-length version of the song, a full minute longer than the promoted version you will find elsewhere on YouTube. You can read more about the song here.

Having just turned 65 today, I have chosen this tune as my song of the day: Once In A Lifetime, Same As It Ever Was.

Enjoy.

Once In A Lifetime

Talking Heads

And you may find yourself living in a shotgun shack
And you may find yourself in another part of the world
And you may find yourself behind the wheel of a large automobile
And you may find yourself in a beautiful house, with a beautiful wife
And you may ask yourself
Well…How did I get here?

Letting the days go by
Let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by
Water flowing underground
Into the blue again
After the money’s gone
Once in a lifetime
Water flowing underground

And you may ask yourself
How do I work this?
And you may ask yourself
Where is that large automobile?
And you may tell yourself
This is not my beautiful house
And you may tell yourself
This is not my beautiful wife

Letting the days go by
Let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by
Water flowing underground
Into the blue again
After the money’s gone
Once in a lifetime
Water flowing underground

Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…

Water dissolving…and water removing
There is water at the bottom of the ocean
Under the water, carry the water at the bottom of the ocean
Remove the water at the bottom of the ocean

Letting the days go by
Let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by
Water flowing underground
Into the blue again
Into the silent water
Under the rocks and stones
There is water underground

Letting the days go by
Let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by
Water flowing underground
Into the blue again
After the money’s gone
Once in a lifetime
Water flowing underground

And you may ask yourself
What is that beautiful house?
And you may ask yourself
Where does that highway go to?
And you may ask yourself
Am I right?…Am I wrong?
And you may say to yourself
My God!…What have I done?!

Letting the days go by
Let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by
Water flowing underground
Into the blue again
Into the silent water
Under the rocks and stones
There is water underground

Letting the days go by
Let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by
Water flowing underground
Into the blue again
After the money’s gone
Once in a lifetime
Water flowing underground

Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…

Look where my hand was
Time isn’t holding up
Time is an asterisk

Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…

Yeah, the twister comes
Here comes the twister
Same as it ever was…

Songwriters
BYRNE, DAVID/FRANTZ, CHRISTOPHER/WEYMOUTH, TINA/HARRISON, JERRY/ENO, BRIAN PETER GEORGE

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

Live Long And Prosper

Rock Lyrics Vol. 20 – Supermans Song

A very odd song to be the first hit for a new band, but there it is. Superman’s Song was released in 1991 by the Crash Test Dummies, a Canadian band of some repute hailing from Winnipeg, Manitoba. I think there was another rock band or two that came from Winnipeg, but it slips my mind … [joking].

The deep bass-baritone of Brad Roberts, offset by the dulcet tones of Ellen Reid, is the main draw of the band and a perfect mix for the funeral-dirge vocals of the song.

The lyrics talk of Superman in the past tense, which was odd, because this song was released in 1991 and Superman didn’t “die’ until 1992. Did Brad have some sort of precognition? Or was he tipped off? I’m sure it helped sell CDs in the USA when the comic-book series depicting the death of Superman came out.

The instrumentation is very understated, with the piano supplying the body of sound, along with guitar, bass and various orchestra instruments. The only percussion I can hear is the wooden block. The song was all about the vocals, and rightly so.

This is one of those sing-along songs. I know I did whenever I heard it. You did too, didn’t you? Come on, admit it. Sing along with the video, and read the lyrics while you’re doing it. They’re quite interesting.

 

Superman’s Song

Crash Test Dummies

Tarzan wasn’t a ladies man,
He’d just come along and scoop em
Up under his arm like that,
Quick as a cat, in the jungle.
Clark Kent, now there was a real gent,
He would not be caught sittin’ around in no jungle scape,
dumb as an ape, doin’ nothing.

Superman never made any money,
Savin’ the world from Solomon Grundy.
And sometimes I despair
The world will never see another man like him.

Hey Bob, Supe had a straight job!
Even though he coulda smashed through
Any bank in the United States.
He had the strength but he would not.
Folks said his family were all dead.
Planet crumbled, but Superman he forced himself
To carry on, forget Krypton, and keep goin’

Superman never made any money,
Savin’ the world from Solomon Grundy.
And sometimes I despair
The world will never see another man like him.

Tarzan was king of the jungle,
And lord over all the apes.
But he could hardly string together
Four words, I Tarzan you Jane.

Sometimes when Supe was stoppin’ crimes,
I’ll bet that he was tempted to just quit
And turn his back on man,
Join Tarzan in the forest.
But he stayed in the city,
Kept on changin’ clothes
In dirty old phone booths ’til his work was through.
Had nothin’ to do but go on home.

Superman never made any money,
Savin’ the world from Solomon Grundy.
And sometimes I despair
The world will never see another man like him.

And sometimes I despair
The world will never see another man like him.

Songwriter: BRAD ROBERTS
Superman’s Song lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group
Released: 1991

 

 

Live Long and Prosper

 

Rock Lyrics Vol. 3 – The Weird

Here is another of my rock anthems that set my head to bobbing, especially when Rick starts windmilling on his guitar. But when you dig into the lyrics, well, it’s just weird.

Like, just what the hell does this mean:

Well just the other day I heard of a soldier’s falling off
Some Indonesian junk that’s going round.

It seems to be an early Boomer telling his girlfriend what advice his World War 2 parents are giving him. But then he catches his parents rockin’ & rollin’ on the couch. And they mention KISS albums?? Too weird for me.

It all sounds good when you’re rockin’ to the beat. Maybe it’s best to just ignore the lyrics altogether and allow yourself to get lost in the music.

Surrender

Cheap Trick

Mother told me, yes, she told me I’d meet girls like you.
She also told me, “Stay away, you’ll never know what you’ll catch.”
Well just the other day I heard of a soldier’s falling off
Some Indonesian junk that’s going round.

Mommy’s alright, Daddy’s alright, they just seem a little weird.
Surrender, surrender, but don’t give yourself away, ay, aaaaaaaay.

Father says, “Your mother’s right, she’s really up on things.”
“Before we married, Mommy served in the WACS in the Philippines.”
Now, I had heard the wacs recruited old maids for the war.
But mommy isn’t one of those, I’ve known her all these years.

Mommy’s alright, Daddy’s alright, they just seem a little weird.
Surrender, surrender, but don’t give yourself away, ay, aaaaaaaay.

Whatever happened to all this season’s losers of the year?
Every time I got to thinking, where’d they disappear?
When I woke up, Mom and Dad are rolling on the couch.
Rolling numbers, rock and rollin, got my Kiss records out.

Mommy’s alright, Daddy’s alright, they just seem a little weird.
Surrender, surrender, but don’t give yourself away, ay, aaaaaaaay.

Awaaaaaaay.
Awaaaaaaay.

Surrender, surrender, but don’t give yourself away.
(Mommy’s alright, Daddy’s alright)
Surrender, surrender, but don’t give yourself away.
(Mommy’s alright, Daddy’s alright)
Surrender, surrender, but don’t give yourself away.
(Mommy’s alright, Daddy’s alright)
Surrender, surrender, but don’t give yourself away.
(Bun E’s alright, Tommy’s alright, Robin’s alright, Rick’s alright)
Surrender, surrender, but don’t give yourself away.
(Were all alright, Were all alright, Were all alright, Were all alright!!!)
Surrender, surrender, but don’t give yourself away.
(Mommy’s alright, Daddy’s alright)

 

This is another live video. I’m pretty sure it’s at Budokan, Japan, circa 1978. Good stuff!

Live Long And Prosper

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