Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Violentine's Day

These are the lyrics to Elvis Costello's "Wave a White Flag," which was written, recorded, and apparently discarded in the days before he had a record contract. While I hope no one thinks I find domestic violence (or any other kind, really) an amusing topic, there's something about the give and take here that is almost sweet.

Plus she seems to have the upper hand. What with the pistol and all. The recording of this that I have is an acoustic one, and the melody and feel are reminiscent of 20s and 30s pop music, which may be why this song amuses me.

Take off your shoes, hang up your wings
Stack up the chairs, roll up the rug
Savor the things that sobriety brings
Drain in the last from a jug

But when I hit the bottle, there's no tellin' what I'll do
'Cause something deep inside me wants to turn you black and blue
I can't resist you, I can't wait
To twist your loving arms 'til you capitulate

Beat me in the kitchen, and I'll beat you in the hall
There's nothing I love better than a free for all
To take your pretty neck and see which way it bends
But when it is all over we will still be friends

Wave a white flag, put away the pistol
Too many people just can't get kissed
But if there's nothin' I can do to make amends, baby
Hope you don't murder me

Oh, was it all right, or was it okay
I'll make it all up to you someday
Oh, but you didn't have to laugh that way
Oh, no, you didn't have to laugh that way

Wave a white flag, put away the pistol
Too many people just can't get kissed
But if there's nothin' I can do to make amends, baby
Hope you don't murder me
Gee, baby, hope you don't murder me

Happy Valentine's Day, Blogreader. Hope you don't murder me!


Meloney Lemon said...

I'm remembering Tom Waits. Remember Blue Valentine?

The Moon Topples said...

I certainly do, Meloney. An excellent song, and more thematically appropriate for this cursed day.

Actually, Tom Waits has any number of songs that can be fun on an embittered Valentine's Day.

Pants said...

Happy memories. I saw Elvis Costello at the Royal Albert Hall, Christmas Eve 1982 and recorded it on the Sony Walkman. Not a bad reproduction either. I've still got it.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

Elvis Costello has always had some of the most literate lyrics around.

And I would never murder a musician.

Ms Melancholy said...

Ah, Tom Waits....

Liz Dwyer said...

Valentine's Day cursed? Murder? Well, you do live in Chicago...and there was that pesky little Capone massacre to make things extra special. ;)

Anonymous said...

This tune has always been one of my favorites. I love the way he pauses several times and shifts the tempo and the key, it becomes several rambling but connected tunes.

I like your new look, Moon Topples. Very cool. Anyone ever ask you (in the old Fonzie days) to jump a shark?

the last noel said...

Didn't this song win a Grammy on Sunday?

Caroline said...

No desire to murder you.
I like this Elvis. He supports the same football team as me.

The Moon Topples said...

TSP: Can I have a copy?

HinSF: I agree. His songs even make a good read. Glad you don't murder musicians. I hope that umbrella includes people who just sing.

Liz: I have no comment to make on any gang activity you may or may not have heard about taking place in this city.

Caveblogem: Yay! You know it, too. And no, never asked to jump a shark. Probably would have switched the logo sooner if I had.

LastNoel: Nope. Not even a technical achievement one.

Caroline: What football team is that? But, yeah, this the bestest Elvis in all the land.

Caroline said...

Tranmere Rovers.