Strange Weather

(T. Waits/K. Brennan) Jalma Music (ASCAP)

Will you take me across the Channel
London Bridge is falling down
strange, a woman tries to save
more than a man will try to drown
and it's the rain that they predicted
it's the forecast ev'ry time
the rose has died because you picked it,
I believe that brandy's mine

And all over the world
strangers talk only about the weather
All over the world it's the same,
it's the same!

And the world is getting flatter
and the sky is falling all around
oh, and nothing is the matter
for I'll never cry in town
and a love like ours, my dear,
is best measured when it's down
and I never buy umbrellas
‘cause there's always one around

And you know that it's beginning
and you know that it's the end
once again we are strangers
as the fog goes rolling in

and all over the world
strangers talk only about the weather
All over the world it's the same,
it's the same!
It's the same!


Michael Blair: Drums, percussions, bongos, brake drums
Ralph Carney: Saxes, clarinets, baritone, horn
Greg Cohen: Electric bass, basstarda, alto horn
Marc Ribot: Guitars, banjo, trumpet
Willie Schwarz: Accordion, hammond organ, sitar, conga
Tom Waits: Vocals

Down There By The Train

17 May 1996
Written by Tom Waits
Published by Jalma Music Inc. ASCAP

There's a place I know where the train goes slow
Where the sinner can be washed in the blood of the land/lamb?
There's a river by the trestle down by sinner's grove
Down where the willow and the dogwood grow

You can hear the whistle
You can hear the bell
From the halls of heaven to the gates of hell
And there's room for the foresaken if you're there on time
You'll be washed of all your sins and all of your crimes

If you're down there by the train
Down there by the train
Down there by the train
Down there by the train
Down there where the train goes slow

There's a golden moon that shines up through the mist
And I know that your name can be on that list
There's no eye for an eye, there's no tooth for a tooth
I saw Judas Escariot carrying John Wilkes Boothe

He was down there by the train
Down there by the train
Down there by the train
Down there by the train
He was down there where the train goes slow

If you've lost all your hope, if you've lost all your faith
I know you can be cared for and I know you can be safe
And all the shamefuls and all of the wars
And the heathen soldier who pierced the side of the lord

Was down there by the train
Down there by the train
Down there by the train
Down there by the train
Down there where the train goes slow

Well I've never asked forgivenees and I've never said a prayer
Never given of myself, never truly cared
I've left the ones who loved me and I'm still raising cain
I'm taking the low road and if you've done the same

Meet me down there by the train
Down there by the train
Down there by the train
Down there by the train
Down there where the train goes slow

Meet me down there by the train
down there by the train
down there by the train
down there by the train
down there where the train goes slow


Empty Pockets

23 December 1995
(All I've Got Is Empty Pockets Now) - Montreaux
(Empty Parks) - Bootleg
(Purple Avenue) - Holly Cole album

Written by Tom Waits

I slow down Purple Avenue
to March around in April's fools
Weather vanes remind
of the summertimes that I've left behind

Money's gone for auld lang syne
I spent on Eastern Standard Time
whatever happened to my role(?)
September fell right through the hole
All I've got is empty pockets now

Why does August try so hard
to hoist me on my own pitard?
I've learned one thing from how we were
that an ounce of prevention's worth a pound of cure

The shadows fall, but I cannot thread
the tenor of the things you said
All that's left is flesh and bone
Lights are on but no one's home
All I've got is empty pockets now

I spill myself another drink
I count the silver in the sink
The orchestra is blind
but I've never been the worrying kind

Subsequently and furthermore
I'll sleep right here on the draining board
I'll never be paroled(?)
I like to drink them while they're cold
All I've got is empty pockets now.


The Fall of Troy

16 May 1996
Written by Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan

It's the same with men as with horses and dogs
Nothing wants to die
Evelyn? James they killed in a game
with guns too big for their hands
just off St. Charles in No-Mans Land
and you'll have to find your own way home.
Boys, you'll have to find your own way home.

The oldest was Troy, an eighteen year-old boy
Shot dead in March during a robbery
his brother started out to hell and to ruin
Troy's killer was never caught they say.
Young nick he just went bad that day
Now he'll have to find his own way home.
Boys, he'll have to find his own way home.

Why cook dinner?
Why make my bed?
Why come home at all?
Out the door and through the woods
There is a world where nothing grows
It's hard to say grace and to sit in the place
Of someone missing at the table
Mom's hair sprayed? tight
And her face in her hands
Watching TV for answers to me
After all she's only human
And she's trying to find her own way home.
Boys, she's trying to find her own way home.

My legs ache
My heart is sore
The well is full of pennies.


Filipino Box Spring Hog

26 February 1997
Recorded for "Born to Choose" compilation 1993 Rykodisc
Written by Tom Waits
Published by Jalma Music Inc. ASCAP

I hung on the Mary's stump, I danced with a soldier's glee.
With a rum-soaked crook and a big fat laugh I spent my last dollar on thee.
I saw Bill Bones, I gave him a yell. Kehoe spiked the nog.
With a chain link fence and a scrap iron jaw,
we're cooking up a Filipino box spring hog,
cooking up a Filipino box spring hog.

Old John broken and Jack the queer bought a rabbit in a crawfish bag.
Four and twenty blackbirds baked in a pie,
Worse brought nothin' but a bulletproof vest and her criminal underwire bra.
I was naked to the waist with my fierce black hound.
and we're cooking up a Filipino box spring hog,
cooking up a Filipino box spring hog.

Spider rode in from Hollister Berm with a one-eyed stolen mare. Donned himself with chicken fat. Sawing on a jawbone violin their livin' is easier than falling off a log. When you're cooking up a Filipino box spring hog, cooking up a Filipino box spring hog.

Dig a big pit in a dirty alley road, Fill it with a Madrone bag. Stinks like hell and the neighbors complain. Don't give a hoot what they say. Turn that hog, turn him over nice, baste him with a sweeping broom. You gotta swat them flies and chain up the dogs when your cooking up a Filipino box spring hog, cooking up a Filipino box spring hog.

Jerk meat possum with grapes and figs, old Brown Betty in a yellow wig. T'aint the mince meat filagree t'aint the turkey neck stew. T'aint them brulee okra seeds, though she made them special for you. Worse just won a prize for her Bottom Black Pie, the beans got thrown to the dogs. Ja-he-se-us Christ, I can always make room when they're cooking up a Filipino box spring hog, cooking up a Filipino box spring hog, cooking up a Filipino box spring hog, cooking up a Filipino box spring hog, cooking up a Filipino box spring hog.


I'll Never Let Go Of Your Hand

28 January 1996
Written by Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan

Well ring the bell backwards and bury the axe
Fall down on your knees in the dirt
I'm tied to the mast between wind and water
Believe me you'll never get hurt
Our rings in the pawnshop and (rains/rings) in the (hole/hull)
Down at the 5 point tire stand I'll lose everything,
But I won't let go of your hand

Well Peter denied and Judas betrayed
I'll (bare) with the roll of the drum
And the wind will tell the turn from the wheel
And the watchman is making his rounds
Well you'll leave me hanging by the skin of my teeth
I've only got one leg to stand
You can send me to hell,
But I'll never let go of your hand

Swing from the rope on a cross-legged tree
Signed in one-eyed Jacks blood
From Temple to Union
To LA and Grand
Walking back home in the mud
Now I must make my best of the only way home
(??????) is only (insult)
I'm lost on the midway, I'm reckless in your eyes
Just give me a cople more throws
I'll dare you to dine with the cross-legged night
Dare me to jump and I will
I'll fall from your grace,
But I'll never let go of your hand
I'll never let go of your hand


Little Drop of Poison

28 October 1997
Written by Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan

I like my town with a little drop of poison
Nobody knows they're lining up to go insane
I'm all alone, I smoke my friends down to the filter
But I feel much cleaner after it rains

She left in the fall, that's her picture on the wall
She always had that little drop of poison
She left in the fall, that's her picture on the wall
She always had that little drop of poison

Did the devil make the world why god was sleeping
Someone said you'll never get a wish from a bone
Another wrong good-bye nd a hundred sailors
That deep blue sky is my home

She left in the fall, that's her picture on the wall
She always had that little drop of poison
She left in the fall, that's her picture on the wall
She always had that little drop of poison

A rat always knows when he's in with weasels
Here you lose a little every day
I remember when a million was a million
They all have ways to make you pay
They all have ways to make you pay


No One Can Forgive Me

10 March 1996
Written by Tom Waits

Crack a mean whip carry a big gun
Cast a long shadow 'til the day is done
Do 90 miles an hour down a devil's trail
Done hard time in a hundred jails

No one can forgive me but my baby
No one can forgive me but my baby
No one can forgive me but my baby

Now Jesus don't know, Mary don't know
Preacher don't know, Momma don't know
My Daddy don't know, my brother don't know
St. John don't know, St. Peter don't know

No one can forgive me but my baby

I took a hundred dollars from a blind man's hands
Slept with the whores on the burnin' sands
Got 27 children I never see
Got blood on my hands that'll never come clean
I got long arms, tell big lies
Stole the pennies from my dear mother's eyes
I'm tall in the saddle about six foot nine
I beat up Revenuers all the time

No one can forgive me but my baby
No one can forgive me but my baby
I got a mean temper I'm a big lie
Broke all the laws set the house on fire
When I stand before Jesus and he asks me to kneel
I tell him maybe we can make a deal

No one can forgive me but my baby
No one can forgive me but my baby

I don't pay no bills I don't say no prayers
Give back nothin' and I take all dares
Stole a car and got me a gun
If there ain't no road I'm gonna make me one
Broke my baby's heart now with my door
I don't say nothing when I meet my guy

No one can forgive me but my baby
No one can forgive me but my baby
No one can forgive me but my baby
No one can forgive me but my baby
No one can forgive me but my baby
Forgive me baby


Rainbow Sleeves

3 December 1996
Written by Tom Waits

You used to dream yourself away each night
To places that you've never been.
On wings made of wishes that you whispered to yourself
Back when every night the moon and you would slip away to places
Where you knew that you would never get the blues.
Well, now, whiskey gives you wings to carry each one of your dreams
And the moon does not belong to you
But I believe that your heart keeps young dreams, I've been told
To keep them there for growing old
And a heart that has been broken will be stronger when it mends.
Don't let the blues stop you singing
Darling, you've only got a broken wing
Hey, you just hang onto my rainbow
Hang on to my rainbow
Hang on to my rainbow...sleeves.

...?


Walk Away

16 May 1996
Written by Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan

Dot King was whittled from the bone of Cain
with a little drop of poison in the red, red blood
She need a way to turn around the bend
She said I want to walk away and start over again.

There are things I've done I can't erase
I want to look in the mirror, see another face
I said never would I do it again
I want to walk away, start over again.

No more rain
No more roses
On my way, shake my thirst in a cool, cool pond.

There is a (widower/whittler/winner) in every place
There is a heart that's beating in every page
The beginning of it starts at the end
When it's time to walk away and start over again.

Weather is murder at a hundred and three
William Ray shot Corabell Lee
A yellow dog knows when he has sinned
You want to walk away and start over again.

No more rain
No more roses
On my way, shaking my thirst in a cool cool pond.

Cooper told Maui the whole block is gone
They're dying for jewelry, money, and clothes
I always get out of the trouble I'm in
I want to walk away, start over again.

I left my bible by the side of the road
Carve my initials in an old dead tree
I'm going away but I'm going to be back when
It's time to walk away and start over again.


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