Song Lyric Sunday — Back Down or Let Go

I knew, as soon as I saw that “let go” was the theme for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday prompt, that I wanted to use that Tom Petty song. You know, it goes, “I won’t let go, no I won’t let go.”

Except that’s not how it goes. The lyrics are, “I won’t back down, no I won’t back down.” Oh what the hell! “Let go” or “back down”? Same difference, right?

So I’m going with my first impulse and will be using Tom Petty’s “I Won’t Back Down.”

Released in April 1989 on Petty’s first solo album, Full Moon Fever, “I Won’t Back Down” was written by Petty and Jeff Lynne, his writing partner for the album. It reached number 12 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The song is simply about someone who is standing up and fighting for what he believes in and for what he wants, even if being criticized for it.

Petty played this song on September 21, 2001 as part of a telethon to benefit the victims of the terrorist attacks on America. As a result, it became thought of as a sort of patriotic anthem. Petty said that it was never his intention for the song to be considered a patriotic song, adding, “I just write them, I can’t control where it ends up.”

Here are the song’s lyrics.

Well, I won’t back down
No, I won’t back down
You can stand me up at the gates of hell
But I won’t back down

No, I’ll stand my ground
Won’t be turned around
And I’ll keep this world from draggin’ me down
Gonna stand my ground
And I won’t back down

(I won’t back down) Hey, baby
There ain’t no easy way out
(I won’t back down) Hey, I
Will stand my ground
And I won’t back down

Well, I know what’s right
I got just one life
In a world that keeps on pushin’ me around
But I’ll stand my ground
And I won’t back down

(I won’t back down) Hey, baby
There ain’t no easy way out
(I won’t back down) Hey, I
Will stand my ground
(I won’t back down) And I won’t back down

(I won’t back down) Hey, baby
There ain’t no easy way out
(I won’t back down) Hey, I
Won’t back down

(I won’t back down) Hey, baby
There ain’t no easy way out
(I won’t back down) Hey, I
Will stand my ground
(I won’t back down) And I won’t back down
(I won’t back down) No, I won’t back down

Song Lyric Sunday — What’s in a Name?

Well, this is different. Helen Vahdati decided to challenge us in this week’s Song Lyric Sunday prompt by asking us to write about “a song from an artist/singer who shares your name.”

Last I checked, there aren’t too many artists or singers named Fandango. However, there is a song that has the word “fandango” in its lyrics. In fact, it’s the very song from which I came up with my pseudonym for this blog. Can you guess the song?

Okay, I won’t keep you in suspense any longer. It’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen.

“Bohemian Rhapsody” was written by Freddie Mercury for Queen’s 1975 album A Night at the Opera.

There’s a lot of speculation about the meaning of the song, but Mercury was tight-lipped, and the band agreed not to reveal anything about the song’s meaning. Mercury stated, “It’s one of those songs which has such a fantasy feel about it. I think people should just listen to it, think about it, and then make up their own minds as to what it says to them.”

Some have speculated the song has its roots in his parents’ religion of Zoroastrianism. Many of the words in the song appear in the Qu’ran. “Bismillah” is one of these and it literally means “In the name of Allah.” The word “Scaramouch” means “a stock character that appears as a boastful coward.” “Beelzebub” is one of the many names given to the devil.

Another interpretation is that it’s about a boy pleading in front of an unsympathetic jury after murdering a man, evidenced by the lyric “He’s just a poor boy from a poor family / Spare him his life from this monstrosity.”

As to what “fandango” refers to in the song, well, the fandango is a lively Spanish or Spanish-American dance in triple time that is usually performed by a man and a woman to the accompaniment of guitar and castanet. But some have posited that “doing the fandango” is a reference to a hemp fandango, which could be a description of a person being hanged and in the throes of the dance of death.

Here are the song’s lyrics.

Is this the real life?
Is this just fantasy?
Caught in a landslide,
No escape from reality.

Open your eyes,
Look up to the skies and see,
I’m just a poor boy, I need no sympathy,
Because I’m easy come, easy go,
Little high, little low,
Any way the wind blows doesn’t really matter to me, to me.

Mama, just killed a man,
Put a gun against his head,
Pulled my trigger, now he’s dead.
Mama, life had just begun,
But now I’ve gone and thrown it all away.

Mama, ooh,
Didn’t mean to make you cry,
If I’m not back again this time tomorrow,
Carry on, carry on as if nothing really matters.

Too late, my time has come,
Sends shivers down my spine,
Body’s aching all the time.
Goodbye, everybody, I’ve got to go,
Gotta leave you all behind and face the truth.

Mama, ooh (any way the wind blows),
I don’t wanna die,
I sometimes wish I’d never been born at all.

I see a little silhouetto of a man,
Scaramouche, Scaramouche, will you do the Fandango?
Thunderbolt and lightning,
Very, very frightening me.
(Galileo) Galileo.
(Galileo) Galileo,
Galileo Figaro
Magnifico-o-o-o-o.

I’m just a poor boy, nobody loves me.
He’s just a poor boy from a poor family,
Spare him his life from this monstrosity.

Easy come, easy go, will you let me go?
Bismillah! No, we will not let you go. (Let him go!)
Bismillah! We will not let you go. (Let him go!)
Bismillah! We will not let you go. (Let me go!)
Will not let you go. (Let me go!)
Never let you go (Never, never, never, never let me go)
Oh oh oh oh
No, no, no, no, no, no, no
Oh, mama mia, mama mia (Mama mia, let me go.)
Beelzebub has a devil put aside for me, for me, for me.

So you think you can stone me and spit in my eye?
So you think you can love me and leave me to die?
Oh, baby, can’t do this to me, baby,
Just gotta get out, just gotta get right outta here.

(Ooooh, ooh yeah, ooh yeah)

Nothing really matters,
Anyone can see,
Nothing really matters,
Nothing really matters to me.

Any way the wind blows.

Song Lyric Sunday — Heart of Gold

For this week’s Song Lyric Sunday theme, Helen Vahdati chose “heart.” I’ve always been a Neil Young fan, so when I saw this week’s theme, I naturally thought of Neil’s 1972 classic song, “Heart of Gold.”

A track from the album Harvest, “Heart of Gold” was Young’s only U.S. number one single. He wrote the song in 1971 after he suffered a back injury that made it difficult for him to play the electric guitar, so on the Harvest tracks he played acoustic guitar.

The song seems to be about a search for fulfillment and for the meaning existence. Or it may be a search for love (i.e., a heart of gold). He is not giving up his search, although he recognizes that part of the problem is that he holds back his own feelings, so doesn’t share his own heart.

As a point of interest, James Taylor and Linda Ronstadt sang backup on “Heart of Gold,” although they don’t come in until close to the end of the song.

Here are the lyrics to the song.

I wanna live, I wanna give
I’ve been a miner for a heart of gold
It’s these expressions I never give
That keep me searching for a heart of gold
And I’m getting old
Keeps me searching for a heart of gold
And I’m getting old

I’ve been to Hollywood, I’ve been to Redwood
I’ve crossed the ocean for a heart of gold
I’ve been in my mind, it’s such a fine line
That keeps me searching for a heart of gold
And I’m getting old
Keeps me searching for a heart of gold
And I’m getting old

Keep me searching for a heart of gold
You keep me searching and I’m growing old
Keep me searching for a heart of gold
I’ve been a miner for a heart of gold

Song Lyric Sunday — The Devil

Yikes! Is it already Sunday? Again? Where does the time go?

For this week’s Song Lyric Sunday, Helen Vahdati has challenged us with the words “devil/demon.”

I never was a particularly big Elvis Presley fan, but I have to admit that the song that first came to mind was the Elvis song “(You’re the) Devil in Disguise.”

Written by the songwriters Bill Giant, Bernie Baum, and Florence Kaye, the 1963 single peaked at number three on the Billboard singles chart.

The message of the song is really quite simple: people aren’t always what they seem. In this case, it’s about a guy who has been taken in by a girl who turns out to be a lot nastier than her angelic first impression conveys.

Here are the song’s lyrics.

You look like an angel
Walk like an angel
Talk like an angel
But I got wise
You’re the devil in disguise
Oh yes you are
The devil in disguise

You fooled me with your kisses
You cheated and you schemed
Heaven knows how you lied to me
You’re not the way you seemed

You look like an angel
Walk like an angel
Talk like an angel
But I got wise

You’re the devil in disguise
Oh yes you are
The devil in disguise

I thought that I was in heaven
But I was sure surprised
Heaven help me, I didn’t see
The devil in your eyes

You look like an angel
Walk like an angel
Talk like an angel

But I got wise
You’re the devil in disguise
Oh yes you are
The devil in disguise

You’re the devil in disguise
Oh yes you are
The devil in disguise
Oh yes you are
The devil in disguise
Oh yes you are
The devil in disguise
Oh yes you are
The devil in disguise

Song Lyric Sunday — Calling All Angels

Helen Vahdati chose the word “angel” for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday prompt. There are tons of songs about angels, but I decided to go with the song by the rock group Train titled “Calling All Angels.” The 2003 song was included on the band’s third studio album, My Private Nation.

“Calling All Angels” reached number 19 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and spent three weeks atop the Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary chart. It was nominated for two Grammy Awards at the ceremony held in February 2004: Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group, and Best Rock Song.

Written by group members Charles Colin, James Stafford, Pat Monahan, and Scott Michael Underwood, the song tells the tale of someone who seems to be lost in a confusing world, and he’s “calling all angels” asking for help with the problems of today. It is also the unofficial anthem of the Los Angeles Angels baseball team, and is played at Angel Stadium before every game.

Here are the song’s lyrics.

I need a sign to let me know you’re here
All of these lines are being crossed over the atmosphere
I need to know that things are gonna look up
‘Cause I feel us drowning in a sea spilled from a cup

When there is no place safe and no safe place to put my head
When you feel the world shake from the words that are said

I need a sign to let me know you’re here
‘Cause my TV set just keeps it all from being clear
I want a reason for the way things have to be
I need a hand to help build up some kind of hope inside of me

And I’m calling all angels
I’m calling all you angels

When children have to play inside so they don’t disappear
And private eyes solve marriage lies cause we don’t talk for years
And football teams are kissing Queens
And losing sight of having dreams
In a world that what we want is only what we want until it’s ours

I’m calling all angels
I’m calling all you angels