Another CCR Favorite

I’ve always had trouble understanding song lyrics — I’m a melodic kind of guy. I can understand and absorb riffs and variations really well, but lyrics often baffle me.

For a long time I’ve been puzzled by the lyrics of a classic Creedence Clearwater Revival song: “Lookin’ Out My Back Door”.

Somethin’ about elephants in there?

I found a transcription of the lyrics and they still don’t make much sense to me, but you have to consider the era in which they were written:

Just got home from Illinois, lock the front door, oh boy! Got to sit down, take a rest on the porch. Imagination sets in, pretty soon I'm singin', [CHORUS:] Doo, doo, doo, Lookin' out my back door. There's a giant doing cartwheels, a statue wearin' high heels. Look at all the happy creatures dancing on the lawn. A dinosaur Victrola list'ning to Buck Owens. [CHORUS] Tambourines and elephants are playing in the band. Won't you take a ride on the flyin' spoon? Doo, doo doo. Wond'rous apparition provided by magician. [CHORUS] Tambourines and elephants are playing in the band. Won't you take a ride on the flyin' spoon? Doo, doo doo. Bother me tomorrow, today, I'll buy no sorrows. [CHORUS] Forward troubles Illinois, lock the front door, oh boy! Look at all the happy creatures dancing on the lawn. Bother me tomorrow, today, I'll buy no sorrows. [CHORUS]

Okay, I admit the lyrics don’t make a lot of sense; I freely admit that. But the song itself is a wonderful blend of country and rock, and I enjoy playing it on my idiosyncratic home-made Maccaferri-style guitar.

Take a listen:

Lookin’ Out My Back Door

Another one I like isDown On The Corner. Watch the video; you can tell that these guys are really having a good time playing together. I know the feeling!

The lyrics, for what they’re worth:

Early in the evenin’ just about supper time
Over by the courthouse they’re startin’ to unwind
Four kids on the corner tryin’ to bring you up
Willy picks a tune out and he blows it on the harp

Down on the corner, out in the street
‘Willy And The Poor Boys’ are playin’
Bring a nickel, tap your feet

Rooster hits the washboard and people just got to smile
Blinky thumps the gut bass and solos for a while
Poor Boy twangs the rhythm out on his Kalamazoo
And Willy goes into a dance and doubles on kazoo

Down on the corner out in the street
‘Willy And The Poor Boys’ are playin’
Bring a nickel, tap your feet

Down on the corner, out in the street
‘Willy And The Poor Boys’ are playin’
Bring a nickel, tap your feet

You don’t need a penny just to hang around
But if you’ve got a nickel, won’t you lay your money down?
Over on the corner there’s a happy goal
People come from all around to watch the magic boy

Down on the corner, out in the street
‘Willy And The Poor Boys’ are playin’
Bring a nickel, tap your feet

Down on the corner, out in the street
‘Willy And The Poor Boys’ are playin’
Bring a nickel, tap your feet

Down on the corner, out in the street
‘Willy And The Poor Boys’ are playin’
Bring a nickel, tap your feet

Down on the corner, out in the street
‘Willy And The Poor Boys’ are playin’

These CCR productions are mid-twentieth century folk-songs, and I’m quite fond of them. How about you? Ya know, I’m aware of how many people come by my site every day. I need some of you silent readers to comment now and then! I work hard at this writing and I need some feedback, folks.

Larry

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1 Comment

Filed under Music

One response to “Another CCR Favorite

  1. joan

    Great songs, Larry. I doubt the ‘back door’ one needs much introspection. Looks like they picked up some controlled substance in Illinois. (grin) You should rewrite the lyrics from your back porch prospective.
    I love “Down on the Corner” btw. Thanks!

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