John Mellencamp – Minutes to Memories

This song is not one of John’s big hits but it’s a damn good song. It’s off the Scarecrow album. In my opinion, this was John’s best album and arguably the peak of his career.

To prepare for this album Mellencamp had a good idea. He had his band run through old rock songs for a month. They learned them inside and out and applied the knowledge on the new songs they were working on for the Scarecrow album.

You can hear it in songs like R.O.C.K in the U.S.A. and through the complete album.

Minutes to Memories peaked at #14 on the Top Rock Tracks in 1986. It was not released as a single.

 

Minutes to Memories

On a Greyhound thirty miles beyond Jamestown
He saw the sun set on the Tennessee line
He looked at the young man who was riding beside him
He said I’m old kind of worn out inside
I worked my whole life in the steel mills of Gary
And my father before me I helped build this land
Now I’m seventy-seven and with God as my witness
I earned every dollar that passed through my hands
My family and friends are the best thing I’ve known
Through the eye of the needle I’ll carry them home

[Chorus:]
Days turn to minutes
And minutes to memories
Life sweeps away the dreams
That we have planned
You are young and you are the future
So suck it up and tough it out
And be the best you can

The rain hit the old dog in the twilight’s last gleaming
He said Son it sounds like rattling old bones
This highway is long but I know some that are longer
By sunup tomorrow I guess I’ll be home
Through the hills of Kentucky ‘cross the Ohio river
The old man kept talking ’bout his life and his times
He fell asleep with his head against the window
He said an honest man’s pillow is his peace of mind
This world offers riches and riches will grow wings
I don’t take stock in those uncertain things

[Chorus]

The old man had a vision but it was hard for me to follow
I do things my way and I pay a high price
When I think back on the old man and the bus ride
Now that I’m older I can see he was right

Another hot one out on highway eleven
This is my life it’s what I’ve chosen to do
There are no free rides No one said it’d be easy
The old man told me this my son I’m telling it to you

[Chorus]

Queen & David Bowie – Under Pressure

I can’t help but think of that awful song by Vanilia Ice when I hear this now.

Vanilla Ice sampled this on “Ice Ice Baby,” which was a huge hit in 1990. It appears that the sample was never cleared and a settlement was reached with Queen and Bowie long after Vanilla’s song hit it big… I was very happy to see this happen.

John Deacon (Queen’s Bass Player) came up with the iconic two-note bass riff, although it came very close to vanishing. Deacon came up with the riff, then the band went for pizza before coming back to continue rehearsals. Upon returning, Deacon had completely forgotten his idea! Luckily, Taylor eventually remembered how the bassline went. The song is credited to Queen and David Bowie.

The song peaked at #29 in the Billboard 100, #1 in the UK, #3 in Canada, and #6 in NewZealand in 1982.

Brian May: “It was hard because you had four very precocious boys and David, who was precocious enough for all of us. David took over the song lyrically. Looking back, it’s a great song but it should have been mixed differently. Freddie and David had a fierce battle over that.”

\From Songfacts

A collaboration with David Bowie, this is credited to “Queen with David Bowie” because the B-side of the single is Queen’s “Soul Brother.” It was recorded at an impromptu session in Montreaux, Switzerland in the summer of 1981.

According to Queen bass player John Deacon, Freddie Mercury did most of the songwriting on this, although everyone contributed. The lyrics deal with how pressure can destroy lives, but love can be the answer. The lyrics are characteristic of Mercury’s songwriting.

May adds to this feeling of the sessions being fairly strained in a further interview for the Days of our Lives documentary, where he notes that “suddenly you’ve got this other person inputting, inputting, inputting… he (David) had a vision in his head, and it’s quite a difficult process and someone has to back off… and eventually I did back off, which is unusual for me.”

In the US, this was on Queen’s Greatest Hits album and released as a single at the same time. It was not released on a UK album until six months later, when it was included on Hot Space.

This was only the second UK #1 hit for Queen. They hit #2 with “Crazy Little Thing Called Love,” “We Are The Champions,” “Somebody To Love,” and “Killer Queen,” but their only previous #1 in England was “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

In the early ’80s, it was popular for two superstars to get together to release a hit single. Other notable combinations include Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder on “Ebony And Ivory,” Diana Ross and Lionel Richie on “Endless Love,” and Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton on “Islands in the Stream.” “Under Pressure” marked the first time Queen collaborated with another artist.

David Bowie performed this with Annie Lennox at the 1992 “Concert For Life” in Wembley Stadium, London. The show was a tribute to Freddie Mercury, with proceeds going to AIDS causes.

This song has been used in a number of movies, including 2002’s 40 Days And 40 Nights and 2004’s The Girl Next Door. It is also included in the hugely successful Queen tribute show We Will Rock You. >>

During the Taste Of Chaos tour, the singers from My Chemical Romance and The Used would come out and perform this song at the end of the show. >>

Joss Stone covered this for the 2005 Queen tribute album Killer Queen. >>

Reinhold Mack, who did production work on the Hot Space album, told an amusing story about the vocal recording for “Under Pressure,” where one of the two singers would record their improvised vocals with the other being locked out so they couldn’t hear what the other was doing.

Said Mack: “Freddie is doing all his bits and pieces and I see out of the corner of my eye David sticking his head in and listening. Then Fred came down and David went up, and Fred was quite impressed how David was counterpointing to what he (Freddie) had done before. Fred said ‘what do you make of this?’ and I said ‘Well, it’s kinda easy if you stand in the doorway and listen!'”

At which point Freddie apparently had some choice words for David!

According to a 2017 Mojo interview with Brian May, Freddie and David “locked horns” in the studio. Asked to elaborate, the Queen guitarist replied: “In subtle ways, like who would arrive last at the studio. So it was sort of wonderful and terrible. But in my mind I remember the wonderful now, more than the terrible.”

The two singers first met a dozen years before they recorded the song. In 1969, Freddie Mercury fitted David Bowie for a pair of boots during his day job working on a boot stall in Kensington Market.

Under Pressure

Mmm num ba de
Dum bum ba be
Doo buh dum ba beh beh

Pressure pushing down on me
Pressing down on you, no man ask for
Under pressure that burns a building down
Splits a family in two
Puts people on streets

Um ba ba be
Um ba ba be
De day da
Ee day da, that’s okay

It’s the terror of knowing what the world is about
Watching some good friends screaming
“Let me out!”
Pray tomorrow gets me higher
Pressure on people, people on streets

Day day de mm hm
Da da da ba ba
Okay
Chipping around, kick my brains around the floor
These are the days it never rains but it pours
Ee do ba be
Ee da ba ba ba
Um bo bo
Be lap
People on streets
Ee da de da de
People on streets
Ee da de da de da de da

It’s the terror of knowing what the world is about
Watching some good friends screaming
‘Let me out’
Pray tomorrow gets me higher, high
Pressure on people, people on streets

Turned away from it all like a blind man
Sat on a fence but it don’t work
Keep coming up with love but it’s so slashed and torn
Why, why, why?
Love, love, love, love, love
Insanity laughs under pressure we’re breaking

Can’t we give ourselves one more chance?
Why can’t we give love that one more chance?
Why can’t we give love, give love, give love, give love
Give love, give love, give love, give love, give love?

‘Cause love’s such an old fashioned word
And love dares you to care for
The people on the edge of the night
And love (people on streets) dares you to change our way of
Caring about ourselves
This is our last dance
This is our last dance
This is ourselves under pressure
Under pressure
Pressure

U2 – Sunday Bloody Sunday

Of all the U2 songs this one is probably on the top of my list. The drum pattern sounds like they are marching off to battle. It’s raw and you can hear the conviction in what Bono is singing. The Edge’s guitar is crunchy and perfect.

The drum-beat was composed by Larry Mullen Jr., which was recorded in a staircase of their Dublin recording studio because producer Steve Lillywhite was trying to get a full sound with natural reverb.

“Bloody Sunday” was a term given to an incident, which took place on 30th January 1972 in Derry, Northern Ireland where British Soldiers shot 28 unarmed civilians who were peacefully protesting against Operation Demetrius. Thirteen were killed outright, while another man lost his life four months later due to injuries. It was reported that many of the victims who were fleeing the scene were shot at point-blank range.

The first person to have addressed these events musically was John Lennon who composed “Sunday Bloody Sunday” and released it on his third Solo album “Sometime In New York City”. His version of the song directly expresses his anger towards the massacre

The song peaked at #7 in the US Billboard Top Tracks Chart.

 

From Songfacts

There are two Bloody Sundays in Irish history. The first was in 1920 when British troops fired into the crowd at a football match in Dublin in retaliation for the killing of British undercover agents. The second was on January 30, 1972, when British paratroopers killed 13 Irish citizens at a civil rights protest in Derry, Northern Ireland. The song is more about the second Bloody Sunday. 

The lyrics are a nonpartisan condemnation of the historic bloodshed in Ireland – politics is not something you want to discuss in Ireland. Bono’s lyrics in the song are more about interpersonal struggles than about the actual Bloody Sunday events.

Bono used to introduce this at concerts by saying: “This is not a rebel song.”

U2 has played several times at Croke Park, the site of the 1920 Bloody Sunday in Dublin. They first performed there in 1985 on the Unforgettable Fire tour.

Bono started writing this with political lyrics condemning the Irish Republican Army (the IRA), a militant group dedicated to getting British troops out of Northern Ireland. He changed them to point out the atrocities of war without taking sides.

While performing this, Bono would wave a white flag as a call for peace.

Bono was trying to contrast the 1972 Bloody Sunday massacre with Easter Sunday, a peaceful day Protestants and Catholics both celebrate.

The music video for this song was taken from a live performance that’s part of their Live at Red Rocks: Under a Blood Red Sky concert film. The concert took place June 5, 1983 at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Colorado. Directed by Gavin Taylor, it captures the live energy of the band as they fight through the wind and rain to deliver a high-energy performance. At this time, U2 liked their videos shot outdoors in a natural setting.

Larry Mullen’s drums were recorded in a staircase of their Dublin recording studio. Producer Steve Lillywhite was trying to get a full sound with a natural echo.

Steve Wickham, who went on to join The Waterboys, played the electric fiddle on this track.

This took on new meaning as the conflict in Northern Ireland continued through the ’90s.

U2 recorded this in Denver for their Rattle And Hum movie on November 8, 1987. It was the same day as the Enniskillen massacre, where 13 people in Northern Ireland were killed by a bomb detonated by the Irish Republican Army (the IRA). Angered by these events, U2 gave a very emotional performance.

The version on U2’s live album Under A Blood Red Sky was recorded at a show in Sankt Goarshausen, Germany on August 20, 1983.

In 2003, The Edge inducted The Clash into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In his speech, he said, “There is no doubt in my mind that “Sunday Bloody Sunday” wouldn’t – and couldn’t – have been written if not for The Clash.”

A live version of this song plays during the end credits of the 2002 movie Bloody Sunday, which is a documentary-style drama recreating the events of January 30,1972 in Derry, Ireland. It stars James Nesbitt (you may remember him as “Pig Finn” from Waking Ned Devine) as a local Member of Parliament who is involved with the Civil Rights Movement.

Sunday Bloody Sunday

Yeah
Hmm hmm

I can’t believe the news today
Oh, I can’t close my eyes
And make it go away
How long
How long must we sing this song?
How long? How long

’cause tonight we can be as one
Tonight

Broken bottles under children’s feet
Bodies strewn across the dead end street
But I won’t heed the battle call
It puts my back up
Puts my back up against the wall

Sunday, bloody Sunday
Sunday, bloody Sunday
Sunday, bloody Sunday

(Oh, let’s go)

And the battle’s just begun
There’s many lost, but tell me who has won?
The trench is dug within our hearts
And mothers, children, brothers, sisters torn apart

Sunday, bloody Sunday
Sunday, bloody Sunday

How long
How long must we sing this song?
How long? How long

’cause tonight we can be as one
Tonight tonight

Sunday, bloody Sunday
Sunday, bloody Sunday

(Yeah, let’s go)

Wipe the tears from your eyes
Wipe your tears away
Oh, wipe your tears away
I wipe your tears away
(Sunday, bloody Sunday)
I wipe your blood shot eyes
(Sunday, bloody Sunday)

Sunday, bloody Sunday (Sunday, bloody Sunday)
Sunday, bloody Sunday (Sunday, bloody Sunday)

(Yeah, let’s go)

And it’s true we are immune
When fact is fiction and TV reality
And today the millions cry
We eat and drink while tomorrow they die

(Sunday, bloody Sunday)

The real battle just begun
To claim the victory Jesus won
On

Sunday, bloody Sunday
Sunday, bloody Sunday

View at Medium.com

View at Medium.com

View at Medium.com

Steve Earle – The Devil’s Right Hand

The first time I heard this song I was actually playing it on guitar. A buddy of mine started to play it in the late eighties and I started to follow him with the chords. I asked him where he heard it and he played me the Copperhead Road album. This one became one of my favorites off of the album.

It’s a great piece of songwriting.

The Copperhead Road album peaked at #56 in the Billboard Album Charts in 1989… which is hard to believe it wasn’t higher than that. It did peak at #7 in the Country Billboard Chart in 1989.

It’s a great song that has been covered by many artists including Waylon Jennings, Johnny Cash, and the Highwaymen.

From Songfacts

Songwriter Steve Earle is well known as a vocal opponent of capital punishment; running to 3 minutes 1 second, this classic miniature has a message for those who are likely to end up facing it; an attack on what Louis Farrakhan called “the glorification of the gun,” it makes the point that though a gun can get you into a lot of trouble, it can’t get you out of it.

In the song, the unfortunate storyteller fails to heed his mother’s warnings about carrying a pistol, and his youthful fascination ends with him shooting a man dead after being cheated at cards. When the authorities come for him, he protests they have the wrong man because “nothing touched the trigger but the Devil’s right hand”, which in the 21st Century would amount to an insanity defense, but would have probably not have swayed a jury in late 19th Century America wherein this cameo is set. 

Waylon Jennings released this song before Earle did – he included it on his 1986 album Will the Wolf Survive. Jennings and Earle were good friends and kindred spirits; during one of Earle’s stints in prison, Jennings wore a bandana in his honor (Earle wears a bandana on his right wrist). 

The Devil’s Right Hand

About the time that Daddy left to fight the big war
I saw my first pistol in the general store
In the general store, when I was thirteen
I thought it was the finest thing I ever had seen

So l asked if I could have one someday when I grew up
Mama dropped a dozen eggs, she really blew up
She really blew up, and she didn’t understand
Mama said the pistol is the devil’s right hand

The devil’s right hand, the devil’s right hand
Mama says the pistol is the devil’s right hand

Me very first pistol was a cap and ball Colt
Shoots as fast as lightnin’ but it loads a mite slow
It loads a mite slow, and soon I found out
It’ll get you into trouble but it can’t get you out

So about a year later I bought a Colt 45
Called a peacemaker but I never knew why
I never knew why, I didn’t understand
Mama says the pistol is the devil’s right hand

The devil’s right hand, the devil’s right hand
Mama says the pistol is the devil’s right hand

Got into a card game in a company town
I caught a miner cheating, I shot the dog down
I shot the dog down, I watched the man fall
He never touched his holster, never had a chance to draw

The trial was in the morning and they drug me out of bed
Asked me how I pleaded, not guilty I said
Not guilty I said, you’ve got the wrong man
Nothing touched the trigger but the devil’s right hand

The devil’s right hand, the devil’s right hand
Mama says the pistol is the devil’s right hand

The devil’s right hand, the devil’s right hand
Mama says the pistol is the devil’s right hand

Steve Earle – Copperhead Road

Brilliant song by Steve Earle. I became a fan of  Steve Earle when I heard “I Aint Never Satisified” off of the Exit 0 album. Copperhead Road was an actual road near Mountain City, Tennessee. It has since been renamed Copperhead Hollow Road, owing to the theft of road signs bearing the song’s name.

What is interesting is Earle tells a story of three generations, of three different eras, and shows how they intersect all in one song.

This song peaked at #10 in the Billboard Mainstream Charts, #45 in the UK, and #12 in Canada in 1988.

Earle himself called the album the world’s first blend of heavy metal and bluegrass.

When you wrote things like “Copperhead Road,” did you know you had something that would be a signature song?

Steve Earle: Yeah. I did. That song I did. “Guitar Town,” I didn’t. I just thought I was writing a song that was going to open my tour and open my record, because I’d seen Springsteen come out and open the show with “Born in the U.S.A.” on that tour. That’s really when I started writing that album, the day after I saw that tour. But it had such a utilitarian reason to exist for me that I thought that was it. So I was shocked when they made it a single and shocked when it was a hit. But “Copperhead” I knew.

 

From Songfacts

Copperhead Road is a real road in East Tennessee where moonshine was made and two generations later, marijuana was grown. The song tells the story of a soldier who returns home from Vietnam and starts trafficking marijuana.

Copperhead Road is a highly acclaimed album that came after an interesting year for Earle: he spent New Year’s Day of 1988 in a Dallas jail charged with assaulting a policeman, had to deal with various legal and business issues, and at one point had a message on his answering machine that said, “This is Steve. I’m probably out shooting heroin, chasing 13-year-olds and beatin’ up cops. But I’m old and I tire easily, so leave a message and I’ll get back to you.” He also married his fifth wife around the time the album was released.

Along with “Guitar Town,” this is one of Earle’s signature songs. When he wrote it, he knew it would catch on. 

Copperhead Road

Well my name’s John Lee Pettimore
Same as my daddy and his daddy before
You hardly ever saw Grandaddy down here
He only came to town about twice a year
He’d buy a hundred pounds of yeast and some copper line
Everybody knew that he made moonshine
Now the revenue man wanted Grandaddy bad
He headed up the holler with everything he had
It’s before my time but I’ve been told
He never came back from Copperhead Road
Now Daddy ran the whiskey in a big block Dodge
Bought it at an auction at the Mason’s Lodge
Johnson County Sheriff painted on the side
Just shot a coat of primer then he looked inside
Well him and my uncle tore that engine down
I still remember that rumblin’ sound
Well the sheriff came around in the middle of the night
Heard mama cryin’, knew something wasn’t right
He was headed down to Knoxville with the weekly load
You could smell the whiskey burnin’ down Copperhead Road

I volunteered for the Army on my birthday
They draft the white trash first,’round here anyway
I done two tours of duty in Vietnam
And I came home with a brand new plan
I take the seed from Colombia and Mexico
I plant it up the holler down Copperhead Road
Well the D.E.A.’s got a chopper in the air
I wake up screaming like I’m back over there
I learned a thing or two from ol’ Charlie don’t you know
You better stay away from Copperhead Road

Copperhead Road
Copperhead Road
Copperhead Road

 

Paul Simon – Graceland

I enjoyed this song and album when it was released. It was somewhat of a comeback for Simon. I traveled to Graceland the same year it was released for the first time. I got ignored by the guide. It was 1987 and the guide brought up the Beatles and I asked a question about it…I cannot remember the question. The second question I asked was about Bruce Springsteen…how he supposedly climbed the gate to give Elvis the song “Fire” but Elvis wasn’t at home. She finally asked..do we have any more questions…and looked at me…” about Elvis?” I shook my head no and continued…

Part of this song is an account of Paul Simon’s marriage breakup with his first wife Peggy Harper. The nine-year-old “traveling companion” he refers to is their son Harper, who three years later, at the age of 12, accompanied his father on the Graceland tour. Harper Simon, born in 1972, developed into a singer-songwriter.

The song only charted at #81 in the Billboard 100 in 1987…which is surprising to me now. It got a lot of airplay at the time.

At first, Simon considered the word “Graceland” a placeholder title until he could come up with something better – maybe something that had to do with Africa. After a while, he realized the title wasn’t going away, and he got comfortable with it.

Paul Simon: “I couldn’t replace it. I thought, Maybe I’m supposed to go to Graceland. Maybe I’m supposed to go on a trip and see what I’m writing about, and I did.”

Paul Simon: “The track has a beautiful emptiness to it. That’s what made me think of Sun Records when it was nothing but slapback echo and the song.”

From Songfacts

Graceland is the mansion in Memphis, Tennessee where Elvis Presley lived; it is where Elvis is buried, and it is now a museum and popular tourist attraction. Paul Simon started calling his song “Graceland” after he came up with the track, which reminded him of the Sun Records sound where Elvis recorded.

Simon says this song is an example of “how a collaboration works even when you’re not aware of it occurring.” He traveled to South Africa in February 1985 and recorded with a variety of local musicians. One of these sessions was with an accordion player named Forere Motloheloa, who played on the song “The Boy in the Bubble.” These sessions produced a drum sound that Simon liked, which he described in the 2012 Graceland reissue: “The drums were kind of a traveling rhythm in country music – I’m a big Sun Records fan, and early-’50s, mid-’50s Sun Records you hear that beat a lot, like a fast, Johnny Cash type of rhythm.”

Simon put together a rhythm section comprised of three African musicians: guitarist Ray Phiri, fretless bass player Baghiti Khumalo, and drummer Isaac Mtshali. Simon played the drums for Phiri, and asked him to play something over it. Phiri started to play his version of American Country on electric guitar, which were chords not frequently used in African music: minor chords. When Simon asked him why he played that, Phiri responded, “I was just imitating the way you write.”

With Phiri playing his approximation of Amercian country, and Baghiti playing a straight ahead African groove on bass, Simon felt there was a commonality in the music, and he wrote a lyric to express that.

Simon describes that trip in the song; he drove to Graceland from Louisiana on Route 61, and the lyrics were his thoughts of the countryside: “The Mississippi Delta is shining like a National guitar.” When he finally got to Graceland, he took the famous tour.

This is the title track of Simon’s most successful album, selling over 15 million copies and winning a Grammy for Album of the Year. It is an album focusing mostly on African music, but it also explores other forms of non-mainstream music, like Zydeco. Simon considers this song to be less African-sounding than most of the other African-based tracks. The single also won Simon his third Record of the Year award – he previously won for “Mrs. Robinson” and “Bridge Over Troubled Water.”

Paul Simon’s visit to South Africa was no easy task, as many nations were boycotting the country because of their racist apartheid policy. However, the United Nations Anti-Apartheid Committee supported his efforts since he only recorded with black South African musicians and did not collaborate with the government in any way. This didn’t appease some critics, who felt that violating sanctions undermined efforts to effect change in the country, no matter his artistic intentions. Ultimately, the Graceland project helped raise awareness to the apartheid struggle and expose many South African musicians to a global audience. The sanctions were put in place mainly to prevent entertainers from performing lucrative gigs at the Sun City resort, and Simon did nothing to support the corrupt government there.

Regarding the lyrics, “There’s a girl in New York City who calls herself the human trampoline,” Simon explained to SongTalk magazine: “That line came to me when I was walking past the Museum of Natural History. For no reason, I can think of. It’s not related to anybody. Or anything. It just struck me as funny. Although that’s an image that people remember, they talk about that line. But really, what interested me was the next line, because I was using the word ‘Graceland’ but it wasn’t in the chorus. I was bringing ‘Graceland’ back into a verse. Which is one of the things I learned from African music: the recapitulation of themes can come in different places.”

Explaining the World Music component of this song in the album reissue, Simon explained: “The part of me that had ‘Graceland’ in my head I think was subconsciously reacting to what I first heard in the drums, which was some kind of Sun Records/country/blues amalgam. What Ray was doing was mixing up his aural recollections of what American country was and what kind of chord changes I played. So the whole song really is one sound evoking a response, and that eventually became a lyric that instead of being about a South African subject or a political subject, it became a traveling song. That’s really the secret of World Music is that people are able to listen to each other, made associations, and play their own music that sounds like it fits into another culture.”

Several months after the initial recording sessions, Nigerian pedal steel guitarist Demola Adepoju was added to the track. This added a sound familiar to both American and African music, as the pedal steel guitar is a popular instrument in West Africa.

This song has stood the test of time, but when it was released as a single, it only charted at #82 in the US and didn’t crack the charts in the UK. It didn’t fit neatly into any radio formats like “You Can Call Me Al,” so it lacked hit potential. It did find an audience as part of the album, which went to #1 in the UK and stayed on the charts for nearly two years. In America, the album peaked at #3 but stayed on the chart for 97 weeks.

Don and Phil Everly of the Everly Brother sang backup on this track. Paul Simon and his musical partner Art Garfunkel idolized the Everlys and recorded their song “Bye Bye Love” for their Bridge Over Troubled Water album. Simon said he heard “Graceland” as “a perfect Everly Brothers song.”

In a 1993 interview on Larry King Live, Simon said this was his favorite song.

The B-side of the single was “Hearts And Bones,” which can be found on the album of the same name, released three years prior to Graceland.

Simon’s second wife, Carrie Fisher, was the topic of some of the songs on his 1983 Hearts and Bones album, including the title track. They got married that year, divorced a year later, but kept an on-and-off relationship throughout the ’80s. Fisher told Rolling Stone, “‘Graceland’ has part of us in it.”

Graceland

The Mississippi Delta
was shining like a National guitar
I am following the river
Down the highway
Through the cradle of the civil war

I’m going to Graceland, Graceland
Memphis, Tennessee
I’m going to Graceland
Poor boys and pilgrims with families
And we are going to Graceland

My traveling companion is nine years old
He is the child of my first marriage
But I’ve reason to believe
We both will be received
In Graceland

She comes back to tell me she’s gone
As if I didn’t know that
As if I didn’t know my own bed
As if I’d never noticed
The way she brushed her hair from her forehead
And she said, “losing love
Is like a window in your heart
Everybody sees you’re blown apart
Everybody sees the wind blow”

I’m going to Graceland
Memphis, Tennessee
I’m going to Graceland
Poor boys and pilgrims with families
And we are going to Graceland

And my traveling companions
Are ghosts and empty sockets
I’m looking at ghosts and empties
But I’ve reason to believe
We all will be received
In Graceland

There is a girl in New York City
Who calls herself the human trampoline
And sometimes when I’m falling, flying
Or tumbling in turmoil I say
“Whoa, so this is what she means”
She means we’re bouncing into Graceland
And I see losing love
Is like a window in your heart
Well, everybody sees you’re blown apart
Everybody sees the wind blow

Ooh, ooh, ooh
In Graceland, in Graceland
I’m going to Graceland
For reasons I cannot explain
There’s some part of me wants to see
Graceland
And I may be obliged to defend
Every love, every ending
Or maybe there’s no obligations now
Maybe I’ve a reason to believe
We all will be received
In Graceland

Whoa, oh, oh
In Graceland, in Graceland, in Graceland
I’m going to Graceland

The Georgia Satellites – Keep Your Hands To Yourself

A friend of mine that played guitar in high school got a copy of this song the year before it was officially released. They were playing in the gym before us and they played this song. I thought they wrote it until I asked him. It’s a good sounding song live.

It was an instant bar band song. It was a song you didn’t really have to rehearse…just one listen would do it.

This was the only hit for the Georgia Satellites, although lead singer Dan Baird had a hit as a solo artist in 1992 with “I Love You Period.” They didn’t have another big hit but they did have some songs that got airplay on radio and MTV like Battleship Chains and a cover of Hippy Shake.

It was released in 1986 and peaked at #2 in the Billboard 100 and #69 in the UK in 1987.

 

From Songfacts

Lead singer Dan Baird wrote this about the problems their drummer was having with his girlfriend. He wrote it in one sitting on their tour bus.

The video portrayed a shotgun wedding, complete with very pregnant bride and actual shotgun. It was directed by Bill Fishman, whose other credits include the Ramones’ “I Wanna Be Sedated” and Good Charlotte’s “Lifestyles Of The Rich And Famous.”

Many people thought the line “I’ve got a little change in my pocket, going jingle, linga, ling” was a reference to masturbation. The group denied this.

The group was signed to Elektra Records after executives heard a cheaply made 8-track demo of this song. Elektra gave the band a 5-figure budget to cut an entire album of material, but despite attempting several different recordings of “Keep Your Hands to Yourself,” none of these takes were as good as the demo. The demo was included on the album, and that is the version you hear.

Keep Your Hands To Yourself

I got a little change in my pocket going jingle lingle ling
Want to call you on the telephone baby i give you a ring
But each time we talk i get the same old thing
Always no huggin no kissin until i get a wedding ring
My honey my baby don’t put my love upon no shelf
She said don’t give no lies and keep your hands to yourself

Cruel baby baby baby why you want to treat me this way
You know i’m still your lover boy i still feel the same way
That’s when she told me a story ’bout free milk and a cow
And she said no huggin no kissin until i get a wedding vow
My honey my baby don’t put my love upon no shelf
She said don’t hand me no lies and keep your hands to yourself

You see i wanted her real bad and i was about to give in
That’s when she started talkin’ true love started talkin’ about sin
I said honey i’ll live with you for the rest of my life
She said no huggin no kissin until you make me your wife
My honey my baby don’t put my love on no shelf
She don’t hand me no lies and keep your hands to yourself.