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#1
Old 03-20-2016, 08:28 PM
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How long were Brenda and Eddie married?

I've been humming along with this song for decades, and then a few days ago, I realized...
Quote:
Originally Posted by "Scenes From An Italian Restaurant" by Billy Joel

Brenda and Eddy were still going steady in the summer of '75 ...

They got ... a big waterbed that they bought with the bread they had saved for a couple of years ...

Brenda and Eddie had had it already by the summer of '75
The mathematical impossibility boggles the mind. They were going steady in 1975, and then they got married and saved up some money for a couple of years, and then got divorced in 1975???

Has this been discussed anywhere? Has Billy Joel ever addressed it?

I do realize that the phrase "se ven ty five" has a nice useful cadence to it, but still...

Last edited by Keeve; 03-20-2016 at 08:29 PM.
#2
Old 03-20-2016, 08:40 PM
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I always figured it to mean that they had had the best time of their lives by the summer of 75. So anything after that was worse. No idea how long it took them to realise it, though.
#3
Old 03-20-2016, 08:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keeve View Post
I've been humming along with this song for decades, and then a few days ago, I realized...The mathematical impossibility boggles the mind. They were going steady in 1975, and then they got married and saved up some money for a couple of years, and then got divorced in 1975???

Has this been discussed anywhere? Has Billy Joel ever addressed it?

I do realize that the phrase "se ven ty five" has a nice useful cadence to it, but still...
I agree with Uniqueorn: the narrator, looking back, realized that even at the peak of their relationship Brenda and Eddie were already doomed. I.e., they were the sort of people to succeed really well at adolescence but not at adult life.

And when their attempted transition to adult life crashed, they tried to refocus on their adolescent success but it didn't work. "Then the King and the Queen went back to the Green, but you can never go back there again."

So I'd guess they were married maybe two or three years---long enough for money to "get tight", but apparently no kids or other major commitments---and then fell irrevocably apart.

(Oh, and I took the "couple of years" during which they saved up money to be before their marriage.)

Last edited by Kimstu; 03-20-2016 at 08:50 PM.
#4
Old 03-20-2016, 09:31 PM
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This always stuck me as one of the worst of Billy Joels crimes against music and language. The way he treats the characters so that he can get in his zingers. He doesn't like them very much, or think of them as interesting, but he's writing this song about them. So he disposes of them in a couple of verses.
#5
Old 03-20-2016, 09:32 PM
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"Brenda and Eddie," you say?

I really hate Billy Joel and never owned any of his albums, but "Scenes from an Italian Restaurant" is one of those god damn songs you can't ignore if you've listened to any FM radio since the 1970s.

Because BJ sings like he has a mouthful of billiard balls, I always heard it as "Thunder and Eddie." Which always made me think of "Johnny Thunder," from The Kinks album Village Green Preservation Society. Johnny Thunder was another great Catholic rock n' roll hero, like a lotta people in BJ's songs. (I have no idea why Ray Davies wrote a Catholic rock song.)

So for 30 years I've been thinking "Thunder and Eddie!" Billy Joel might be a Long Island meatball, but he wrote a song about gay lovers real early on!
#6
Old 03-20-2016, 09:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keeve View Post
Has Billy Joel ever addressed it?
He can't tell you more than he told you already
#7
Old 03-20-2016, 10:20 PM
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Originally Posted by drad dog View Post
This always stuck me as one of the worst of Billy Joels crimes against music and language. The way he treats the characters so that he can get in his zingers. He doesn't like them very much, or think of them as interesting, but he's writing this song about them. So he disposes of them in a couple of verses.
(*psst* They're not real people. It's ok.)
#8
Old 03-20-2016, 10:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Chimera View Post
(*psst* They're not real people. It's ok.)
Yeah, it's not like that fucking fuck McCartney, who introduced Eleanor Rigby in verse one and killed her in verse three.

And don't bring up Maxwell Edison.
#9
Old 03-21-2016, 12:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Chimera View Post
(*psst* They're not real people. It's ok.)
I've always like the tune actually. I always thought of Billy as eddie, rousing himself up from this stereotyped existence just long enough to come up with a nice melody, and then before we know it we are waving billy goodbye.
#10
Old 03-21-2016, 12:26 AM
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Just wanted to mention that the full story of Brenda and Eddie is told in the Twyla Tharp musical Moving Out, which is based on the songs of Billy Joel. I'm extremely biased since I love Billy Joel's music, but I thoroughly enjoyed the musical. And I agree that Brenda and Eddie had had it already not because they got a divorce in '75, but because they had already peaked in high school.
#11
Old 03-21-2016, 12:45 AM
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"Scenes from an Italian Restaurant" is basically telling the same story as Bruce Springsteen's "Glory Days", John Mellencamp's "Jack and Diane", Sheryl Crow's "Homecoming Queen", Bryan Adams' "Summer Of '69", Meatloaf's "Paradise by the Dashboard Light", and Bob Seger's "Night Moves" - some people peak at an early age and then their prospects fade away and the rest of their lives are a downhill slide.

Last edited by Little Nemo; 03-21-2016 at 12:46 AM.
#12
Old 03-21-2016, 05:18 AM
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Does anyone think Eddie is the one who's got a new wife, life, and fine family; and who can't believe Brenda is looking so good after all those years?

Or was that entire graduating class filled with couples who just couldn't wait to get that first marriage under their belts and over with?

And am I the only one who thinks that at the closing movement of the suite Billy is singing "A bottle of reds; a bottle of whites"?
#13
Old 03-21-2016, 05:31 AM
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Honestly, I've always felt that Joel was working on three separate songs that had similar themes and didn't feel any of them were complete. So he just combined them together and figured the whole would be more impressive than the parts.
#14
Old 03-21-2016, 06:08 AM
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I am still wondering whatever happened to that real estate novelist and Davy 'whose still in the Navy' from one of his other episodes. Billy Joel has his strengths as a musician and songwriter but character development isn't among them.

Last edited by Shagnasty; 03-21-2016 at 06:08 AM.
#15
Old 03-21-2016, 07:39 AM
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Originally Posted by kaylasdad99 View Post
And am I the only one who thinks that at the closing movement of the suite Billy is singing "A bottle of reds; a bottle of whites"?
Yes, yes, me, too
#16
Old 03-21-2016, 11:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
Honestly, I've always felt that Joel was working on three separate songs that had similar themes and didn't feel any of them were complete. So he just combined them together and figured the whole would be more impressive than the parts.
Well, yes...he's admitted that his main influence for putting together these unfinished fragments was the medley that covered most of Side Two of Abbey Road.

I always thought the "narrator" of the entire song was an old friend of Brenda and Eddie's, bumping into an old girlfriend and, despite being glad to see her again, thinking it's for the best that they moved on to other things and partners who were better fits for them...unlike Brenda and Eddie, who thought that they could turn their high-school relationship into a lasting life together, but weren't cut out for it.
#17
Old 03-21-2016, 11:33 AM
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Originally Posted by kaylasdad99 View Post
Does anyone think Eddie is the one who's got a new wife, life, and fine family; and who can't believe Brenda is looking so good after all those years?
No, I don't think so; in the narrator's conversation with his old classmate, he's clearly referring to both Brenda and Eddie in the third person and commenting on them as someone who knew them back when. "There we were, waving Brenda and Eddie goodbye."

Quote:
Originally Posted by kaylasdad99
Or was that entire graduating class filled with couples who just couldn't wait to get that first marriage under their belts and over with?
There's no suggestion in the song that the narrator married his high school sweetheart. All we know is that at some point he got married to somebody (probably before he "lost touch" with the friend he's now talking to), and then divorced and remarried.

Remember, all of this is presumably supposed to be taking place many years after the 1975 events recalled in the song: long enough for the narrator to be surprised that his old friend "could ever look so good after so much time". Probably the class of 1975 is supposed to be at least well into their thirties in the "present day" of the song's setting: plenty of time to fit in a first marriage, divorce and remarriage.

Last edited by Kimstu; 03-21-2016 at 11:35 AM.
#18
Old 03-21-2016, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Hermione View Post
Well, yes...he's admitted that his main influence for putting together these unfinished fragments was the medley that covered most of Side Two of Abbey Road.

I always thought the "narrator" of the entire song was an old friend of Brenda and Eddie's, bumping into an old girlfriend and, despite being glad to see her again, thinking it's for the best that they moved on to other things and partners who were better fits for them...unlike Brenda and Eddie, who thought that they could turn their high-school relationship into a lasting life together, but weren't cut out for it.
This is pretty much the picture that always comes to my mind. As to the OP, I think the phrase "Brenda and Eddie had had it already by the summer of 75" is just the narrator editorializing in hindsight. They were still together and planning a wedding for the end of July, but unbeknownst to them, the marriage was doomed as their best years were behind them(pretty much what Kimstu and Uniqueorn said).

It never occurred to me that the last verse is referring to bottles of red and white pills. It's funny, but kind of doesn't go with the portrait of a narrator that has a good life.
#19
Old 03-21-2016, 11:39 AM
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Originally Posted by IvoryTowerDenizen View Post
Yes, yes, me, too
Yeah, now that you mention it, I've always wondered if that was a reference to "now we've graduated to popping pills" instead of drinking wine.
#20
Old 03-21-2016, 11:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Ukulele Ike View Post
Yeah, it's not like that fucking fuck McCartney, who introduced Eleanor Rigby in verse one and killed her in verse three.
Eleanor was first introduced in She's Leaving Home, but not by name, then she turns up again in Another Day, then we learn of her sad fate in her eponymous song. Take the three songs together and it's a sad tale of a life of quiet desperation. Eleanor thought running away with the man from the motor trade would make her life better, but he dumped her shortly after, and she thought she couldn't go back home and admit she was wrong, so she spent the rest of her life trying to find happiness, and it never came.

And I always pronounce the Billy Joel character as Brender.
#21
Old 03-21-2016, 11:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Shagnasty View Post
I am still wondering whatever happened to that real estate novelist and Davy 'whose still in the Navy' from one of his other episodes. Billy Joel has his strengths as a musician and songwriter but character development isn't among them.
Davy will probably be in the Navy for life. So that's what happened to him.

I heard this song come on the other day and was waiting for that verse, which never came. Poor Davy can't even get in some versions of the song. It was also missing they guy who could be an actor, if he could get out of this place.
#22
Old 03-21-2016, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Skammer View Post
Davy will probably be in the Navy for life. So that's what happened to him.
Nope.

Davey got a degree which made him immune from all future convictions.

Good thing too as he sold some stocks on a steel mill in Allentown. The catch? There are no steel mills in Allentown!

I understand he later opened up a grand cafe and became quite the big shot.
#23
Old 03-21-2016, 12:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Skammer View Post
Davy will probably be in the Navy for life. So that's what happened to him.

I heard this song come on the other day and was waiting for that verse, which never came. Poor Davy can't even get in some versions of the song. It was also missing they guy who could be an actor, if he could get out of this place.
Joel refers to his song being cut in The Entertainer.

"I am the entertainer, I've come to do my show,
You've heard my latest record, it's been on the radio
It took me years to write it, they were the best years of my life,
It was a beautiful song, but it ran too long
If you're gonna have a hit you gotta make it fit
So they cut it down to 3:05"
#24
Old 03-21-2016, 12:47 PM
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Originally Posted by tullsterx View Post
Yeah, now that you mention it, I've always wondered if that was a reference to "now we've graduated to popping pills" instead of drinking wine.
I refuse to believe it wasn't pills. I already googled it and everyone wants to deny it. But listen to the aching and melodrama in the voice. It was 1978 I think. After all that building up of a straw man to tear him down, How would the song advance without that step up from the wine?
#25
Old 03-21-2016, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Uniqueorn View Post
I always figured it to mean that they had had the best time of their lives by the summer of 75. So anything after that was worse. No idea how long it took them to realise it, though.
The song came out in 1977, I think, so this was a look back from not far in the future at all.

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Originally Posted by Ukulele Ike View Post
And don't bring up Maxwell Edison.
At least with him we got to learn about his profession and his hobby.
#26
Old 03-21-2016, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Ukulele Ike View Post
"Brenda and Eddie," you say?

I really hate Billy Joel and never owned any of his albums, but "Scenes from an Italian Restaurant" is one of those god damn songs you can't ignore if you've listened to any FM radio since the 1970s.

Because BJ sings like he has a mouthful of billiard balls, I always heard it as "Thunder and Eddie." Which always made me think of "Johnny Thunder," from The Kinks album Village Green Preservation Society. Johnny Thunder was another great Catholic rock n' roll hero, like a lotta people in BJ's songs. (I have no idea why Ray Davies wrote a Catholic rock song.)

So for 30 years I've been thinking "Thunder and Eddie!" Billy Joel might be a Long Island meatball, but he wrote a song about gay lovers real early on!
I love his music and I don't think that in general he sings like he has a mouth full of billiard balls, but that line has always sounded to me like "Thundering Eddie".

"Thundering Eddie would always know how to survive".

Of course I always knew it was "Brenda and Eddie". If nothing else, the context tells you that it's two people.
#27
Old 03-21-2016, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by davidm View Post
I love his music and I don't think that in general he sings like he has a mouth full of billiard balls, but that line has always sounded to me like "Thundering Eddie".
It's because he pronounces her name as "Brender." (Like the robot!)
#28
Old 03-21-2016, 01:51 PM
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The song came out in 1977, I think, so this was a look back from not far in the future at all.
Think bigger - perhaps the song was set in Miami 2017...
#29
Old 03-21-2016, 02:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Tom Tildrum View Post
It's because he pronounces her name as "Brender." (Like the robot!)
Yup. Because Billy's from Lawn Guyland.
#30
Old 03-21-2016, 03:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Shagnasty View Post
I am still wondering whatever happened to that real estate novelist and Davy 'whose still in the Navy' from one of his other episodes. Billy Joel has his strengths as a musician and songwriter but character development isn't among them.
Since Joel has stated that these were real people he knew during his short stint playing in a piano bar he probably did not know them long enough to find out what happened to them.
#31
Old 03-21-2016, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Shagnasty View Post
I am still wondering whatever happened to that real estate novelist and Davy 'whose still in the Navy' from one of his other episodes. Billy Joel has his strengths as a musician and songwriter but character development isn't among them.
I've always wondered just what the hell a "real estate novelist" is, anyway.
#32
Old 03-21-2016, 03:45 PM
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Originally Posted by SirRay View Post
Think bigger - perhaps the song was set in Miami 2017...
Or 3017 -- maybe he really is saying "Bender."
#33
Old 03-21-2016, 05:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Slow Moving Vehicle View Post
I've always wondered just what the hell a "real estate novelist" is, anyway.
A guy who's writing (actually staring at blank pages and thinking about writing) the "great American novel" while paying the bills by selling real estate, which is of course just a way of paying the bills until he gets his big break - or so he keeps telling himself...
#34
Old 03-21-2016, 05:31 PM
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A guy who's writing (actually staring at blank pages and thinking about writing) the "great American novel" while paying the bills by selling real estate, which is of course just a way of paying the bills until he gets his big break - or so he keeps telling himself...
Yup. Like John the bartender keeps telling himself he could be a movie star if only he could get out of the bar.
#35
Old 03-21-2016, 08:18 PM
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Yup. Like John the bartender keeps telling himself he could be a movie star if only he could get out of the bar.
Billy Joel doesn't seem to be big on sophisticated rhyming schemes. I am pretty sure my junior high English teacher would have failed me if I turned in some of his style of lyrics for a poetry assignment.

It doesn't have to be like that. I still worry about Tommy and Gina to this day based on all the problems Bon Jovi laid out in just a few verses. Jack and Diane are another couple that weigh heavily in my thoughts from time to time but Davy and John's only known redeeming quality is that they have jobs that rhyme with other convenient short words.

Last edited by Shagnasty; 03-21-2016 at 08:19 PM.
#36
Old 03-21-2016, 11:37 PM
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Originally Posted by davidm View Post
I love his music and I don't think that in general he sings like he has a mouth full of billiard balls...
My original plan was to write "mouth full of gum balls," but I recently saw the episode of ARCHER where everyone gets drunk and Pam decides to see how many billiard balls she can fit in there.
#37
Old 03-22-2016, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by davidm View Post
A guy who's writing (actually staring at blank pages and thinking about writing) the "great American novel" while paying the bills by selling real estate, which is of course just a way of paying the bills until he gets his big break - or so he keeps telling himself...
My wife says it's a guy that writes real estate listings as if they are short story entries. He doesn't just write "2Br 2Ba ocn vu", but instead describes the house by relating it to the people that have lived there, and their stories.

She compared it to the NYT wedding announcements, which she described as mini stories that were worth reading even if you didn't know the people involved.
#38
Old 03-22-2016, 11:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Skammer View Post
Davy will probably be in the Navy for life. So that's what happened to him.

I heard this song come on the other day and was waiting for that verse, which never came. Poor Davy can't even get in some versions of the song. It was also missing they guy who could be an actor, if he could get out of this place.
I heard he's doing a stand-up routine in LA. And Davy was trying to decide if he should buy some speakers. He got some kicks instead, they weren't cheap either.
#39
Old 03-22-2016, 11:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Just Asking Questions View Post
My wife says it's a guy that writes real estate listings as if they are short story entries. He doesn't just write "2Br 2Ba ocn vu", but instead describes the house by relating it to the people that have lived there, and their stories.

She compared it to the NYT wedding announcements, which she described as mini stories that were worth reading even if you didn't know the people involved.
I don't think so. The whole song is about people who have bigger plans that they'll never actually get around to, either through procrastination, lack of ability, or simply circumstances.

Most Americans, actually.
#40
Old 03-23-2016, 12:00 AM
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I don't think Davy was literally still in the Navy. It's just that his time in the Navy is all he's got. Now he sits on barstools and reminisces about his adventures.

And yeah, a real estate novelist is someone who is just doing real estate 'temporarily' while they write the great novel - a process that will likely continue forever. Like 'actresses' in Hollywood who are temporarily working as waitresses - or hookers.

Last edited by Sam Stone; 03-23-2016 at 12:03 AM.
#41
Old 03-23-2016, 07:46 AM
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Originally Posted by drad dog View Post
I refuse to believe it wasn't pills. I already googled it and everyone wants to deny it. But listen to the aching and melodrama in the voice. It was 1978 I think. After all that building up of a straw man to tear him down, How would the song advance without that step up from the wine?
Doubtful.

“Reds” was popular drug slang for Seconal, but “White(s)” was not a popular term for any illicit drug in pill/capsule form. Amphetamine sulfate would be a real stretch. Other colors besides “red” are rarely used as single names in drug slang, but are often used as adjectives (e.g. Black Beauties, Blue Devils). “Red and Blues” was a popular term for Tuinal, but that wouldn't meter well in Joel's song.
#42
Old 03-23-2016, 08:56 AM
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It's because he pronounces her name as "Brender." (Like the robot!)
No, it's "Brenda Rinetti."
#43
Old 03-23-2016, 10:46 AM
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I don't think so. The whole song is about people who have bigger plans that they'll never actually get around to, either through procrastination, lack of ability, or simply circumstances.

Most Americans, actually.

You may be right.
#44
Old 03-23-2016, 11:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Ukulele Ike View Post
My original plan was to write "mouth full of gum balls," but I recently saw the episode of ARCHER where everyone gets drunk and Pam decides to see how many billiard balls she can fit in there.
Yeah, I'm pretty sure that you couldn't sing at all with a mouth full of billiard balls (full being one ball, at most). I'm not even sure you could breath.
#45
Old 03-23-2016, 12:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Tibby or Not Tibby View Post
Doubtful.

“Reds” was popular drug slang for Seconal, but “White(s)” was not a popular term for any illicit drug in pill/capsule form. Amphetamine sulfate would be a real stretch. Other colors besides “red” are rarely used as single names in drug slang, but are often used as adjectives (e.g. Black Beauties, Blue Devils). “Red and Blues” was a popular term for Tuinal, but that wouldn't meter well in Joel's song.
Well, if you think you know better than Lowell George:

"Willin'"
I been warped by the rain, driven by the snow
I'm drunk and dirty, don't ya know?
And I'm still, willin'

And I was out on the road, late at night
I seen my pretty Alice in every headlight
Alice, Dallas Alice

And I've been from Tucson to Tucumcari, Tehachapi to Tonapah
Driven every kind of rig that's ever been made
Driven the back roads so I wouldn't get weighed

And if you give me, weed, whites and wine
And you show me a sign
I'll be willin' to be movin'


Read more: Little Feat - Willin' Lyrics | MetroLyrics

Last edited by Idle Thoughts; 03-23-2016 at 12:42 PM.
#46
Old 03-23-2016, 12:30 PM
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This is from 6 days on the road - Dave Dudley

Well I pulled outta Pittsburgh a rollin' down that Eastern Seaboard
I got my diesel wound up and she's a runnin' like a never before

There's a speed zone ahead alright I don't see a cop in sight
Six days on the road and I'm a gonna make it home tonight
I got my ten forward gears and a Georgia overdrive
I'm takin' little white pills and my eyes are open wide
I just passed a Jimmy and a White I been a passin' everything in sight

Read more: Dave Dudley - Six Days On The Road Lyrics | MetroLyrics

Last edited by drad dog; 03-23-2016 at 12:30 PM.
#47
Old 03-23-2016, 12:42 PM
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Mod Note

Don't post more than 5-6 lines of a song, please.
#48
Old 03-23-2016, 01:19 PM
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Originally Posted by drad dog View Post
Well, if you think you know better than Lowell George:
<snip>

Besides being a rather obscure slang reference to amphetamines, a bottle of reds, a bottle of whites simply doesn't make any sense in the context of the song.

First of all, the lyrics are: a bottle of red, a bottle of white, not: a bottle of reds, a bottle of whites.

Secondly, the line that follows is: perhaps a bottle of rose instead. Since when is rose a viable alternative to uppers or downers? It is, however, a good alternative (well, not really) to red or white wine. And, Italian restaurants are typically associated with wine drinking. Popping pills...not so much.

Thirdly, if you want to numb yourself to the harsh realities of life, you do so with alcohol, or narcotic analgesics...possibly with barbiturates (e.g. “reds”/Seconal), but certainly not with speed (“whites”/amphetamine sulfate).

Lastly, popping pills just doesn't fit the bittersweet romantic motif of the song.

Last edited by Tibby or Not Tibby; 03-23-2016 at 01:19 PM.
#49
Old 03-23-2016, 01:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tibby or Not Tibby View Post
<snip>

Besides being a rather obscure slang reference to amphetamines, a bottle of reds, a bottle of whites simply doesn't make any sense in the context of the song.

First of all, the lyrics are: a bottle of red, a bottle of white, not: a bottle of reds, a bottle of whites.

Secondly, the line that follows is: perhaps a bottle of rose instead. Since when is rose a viable alternative to uppers or downers? It is, however, a good alternative (well, not really) to red or white wine. And, Italian restaurants are typically associated with wine drinking. Popping pills...not so much.

Thirdly, if you want to numb yourself to the harsh realities of life, you do so with alcohol, or narcotic analgesics...possibly with barbiturates (e.g. “reds”/Seconal), but certainly not with speed (“whites”/amphetamine sulfate).

Lastly, popping pills just doesn't fit the bittersweet romantic motif of the song.
Well the discussion is about it sounding like he is pluralizing with an S at the end of the words, at the end of the song, not at the beginning, to make a change in the arc.
This is the line in question as published on line:

A bottle of red, a bottle of white
Whatever kind of mood you're in tonight
I'll meet you anytime you want
In our Italian Restaurant

Notice the second line which is suggestive of the drugs polarities. Notice it doesn't say "Bottle of rose instead" or repeat the motif reversed. Most of all notice that it comes at the end, after a whole lot of drama and changes, 1970s style.

I could be wrong but I heard it that way for years, and it makes me think less of the song if it's not there.
#50
Old 03-23-2016, 01:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drad dog View Post
Well the discussion is about it sounding like he is pluralizing with an S at the end of the words, at the end of the song, not at the beginning, to make a change in the arc.
This is the line in question as published on line:

A bottle of red, a bottle of white
Whatever kind of mood you're in tonight
I'll meet you anytime you want
In our Italian Restaurant

Notice the second line which is suggestive of the drugs polarities. Notice it doesn't say "Bottle of rose instead" or repeat the motif reversed. Most of all notice that it comes at the end, after a whole lot of drama and changes, 1970s style.

I could be wrong but I heard it that way for years, and it makes me think less of the song if it's not there.
Exactly- I've listened closely and I never hear the first verse as whites/reds but always hear the second that way.
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