Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Early Lennon Lyrics for "New York City"

As most of you know, there's a John Lennon "New York City" exhibit at the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame annex in Soho. You can read about the exhibit at Steve Marinucci's Beatles Examiner site. See a slide show here .

The first image on the slide show is early hand written lyrics for the rocker "New York City", eventually released on 1972's "Some Time In New York City", and performed live at Madison Square Garden later that year. If you look closely, you can see how much the lyrics were reworked by Lennon over time. Here's what I think Lennon originally wrote, with much more disturbing, as well as humorous, lyrics :

1. Well i was standing on the corner
just me and doing water
she was wearing love letters in her hand
along came a man, with her bristols in the trash can
shaving off her armpits like a man.
Well she was trying to do her duty
just eating tutti frutti singing long tall sallys (sic) her man
When up came the preacher men, trying to be a preacher
Singing 'Gods a red herring' in drag.

2. Well i was watching johnny carson
just thinking what a farce (?)
and she was waving rent-a-pig in my ear.
along came police stuck a night stick in the TV.
shouting 'hey the revolution's starting here
she held a pistol at my head man
til i thought that i was dead, singing Short Fat Fannies on dope
When down came a swinger, who (?) thought she was a singer
singing 'dog is god backwards' on toast.

1 comment:

- said...

I felt the same way about the acoustic demo - I don't even want to know what he's saying in the second verse.