ILLEGAL SMILE – this song is about smoking pot. Here is the chorus:
But fortunately I have the key to escape reality
And you may see me tonight with an illegal smile
It don't cost very much, but it lasts a long while
Won't you please tell the man I didn't kill anyone
No I'm just tryin' to have me some fun
I've never understood the difference between drinking and smoking weed. So many of our prisons are filled with people who engage in dealing/smoking small amounts of pot. This song was written in 1971 and this whacked out legal injustice is still with us 40 years later.
SPANISH PIPEDREAM – this song is about leaving your life for a simpler way of living
We blew up our T.V. threw away our paper
Went to the country, built us a home
Had a lot of children, fed 'em on peaches
They all found Jesus on their own
Oh if was only that simple?
HELLO IN THERE - this song is about growing old and being alone.
Ya' know that old trees just grow stronger
And old rivers grow wilder ev'ry day
Old people just grow lonesome
Waiting for someone to say, "Hello in there, hello"
This song hits me home for me. My mother lives in a home for the elderly. Every time I visit her, I see these people. Many days all they need is a simple "Hello" to give them a better day.
SAM STONE – this is a song about a war veteran’s return home (sound familiar?)
Sam Stone came home,
To the wife and family
After serving in the conflict overseas.
And the time that he served,
Had shattered all his nerves,
And left a little shrapnel in his knees.
But the morphine eased the pain,
And the grass grew round his brain,
And gave him all the confidence he lacked,
With a purple heart and a monkey on his back.
Forty years later and young men and women are still coming home from wars unable to cope. It will never end.
PARADISE – this is a song about John’s youth as Paradise is a real place.
Then the coal company came with the world's largest shovel
And they tortured the timber and stripped all the land
Well, they dug for their coal till the land was forsaken
Then they wrote it all down as the progress of man
A great song about remembering youth and how time changes. I love the verse I chose as it so distinctly illustrates environmental rape.
YOUR FLAG DECAL WON'T GET YOU INTO HEAVEN ANYMORE – this is a song about how just being patriotic will not get you into heaven.
By the time they got a doctor down I was already dead
And I'll never understand whey the man standing in the pearly gates said
"But your flag decal won't get you into Heaven anymore
We're already overcrowded from your dirty little war"
"Now Jesus don't like killin' no matter the reason's for
And your flag decal won't get you into Heaven anymore"
Again, forty years later, and nothing has changed. Some people think they are better Americans if they have more flag displayed.
FAR FROM ME – this is a song about lost love and one of Prine’s personal favorites.
"Will you still see me tomorrow?"
"No, I got too much to do"
Well, a question ain't really a question
If you know the answer too
Heartache always cuts deep at any age. When someone no longer loves you, what do you do?
ANGEL FROM MONTGOMERY – this is a song from a woman’s perspective about being trapped by the choices she has made and what she gave up.
Make me an angel
That flies from Montgomery
Make me a poster
Of an old rodeo
Just give me one thing
That I can hold on to
To believe in this livin'
Is just a hard way to go
What a classic line “To believe in this livin’ Is just a hard way to go.” Bonnie Raitt has made this her own and has made a beautiful version of it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vhe3vb0z7mY
QUIET MAN – is a song about being left alone and not wanting to hear about someone else’s problems
You got news for me, I got nothing for you
Don't pin your blues on me
Just go ahead and do whatever you wish to
Sometimes you don’t need to hear other people’s problem, but always be there for a friend.
DONALD AND LYDIA – is a song about loneliness, but some say it’s about masturbation.
Hot love, cold love, no love at all.
A portrait of guilt is hung on the wall.
Nothing is wrong, nothing is right.
Donald and lydia made love that night.
The made love in the mountains, they made love in the streams,
They made love in the valleys, they made love in their dreams.
But when they were finished there was nothing to say,
'cause mostly they made love from ten miles away.
I love this song. If all you get out of it is masturbation, then grow up.
SIX O’CLOCK NEWS – is a song about a boy who finds out the truth about his father also being his grandfather.
Sneaking in the closet and through the diary
Now, don't you know all he saw was all there was to see
The whole town saw Jimmy on the six o'clock news
His brains were on the sidewalk and blood was on his shoes
He finds the diary and kills himself. Terrifying. Hauntingly sung. Listen to it to appreciate it.
FLASHBACK BLUES – is another song about remembering the past.
Photographs show the laughs
Recorded in between the bad times
Happy sailors dancing on a sinking ship
Cloudy skies and dead fruit flies
Waving goodbye with tears in my eyes
Well, sure I made it but ya know it was as hell of a trip
The past is always with us. I just hope you younger people are lucky enough to experience a greater number of happier memories than sadder ones by the time you grow old.
PLEASE DOWNLOAD THIS ALBUM AND EXPERIENCE JOHN PRINE ON YOUR OWN. HE ALSO HAS A COUPLE OF ‘GREATEST HITS” PACKAGES AVAILIABLE. YOU CAN SEND ME YOUR “THANK YOU’S’ LATER.