I was listening to my ipod the other day and a song that I had heard hundreds of times came on and I noticed that one of the verses could be classed as more than just a lyric, it could almost be poetry:
Well it was kind of cold, that night she stood alone on the balcony,
She could hear the cars roll by out on 441, like waves crashing on the beach,
And for one desperate moment there, he crept back in her memory,
God it's so painful, when something that's so close, is still so far out of reach.
It may surprise you to learn that those words are from American Girl by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers.
Masters of poetic lyric writing, according to those that know are: Bob Dylan, Sting, John Lennon etc. One other example comes from Death Cab For Cutie (who I mentioned in this blog entry) and a song called Crooked Teeth, although I could have chosen a number of their tracks:
It was one hundred degrees, as we sat beneath a willow tree,
Whose tears didn't care, they just hung in the air and refused to fall.
I knew I'd made horrible call and now the state line felt like the Berlin wall,
And there was no doubt about which side I was on.
'Cause I built you a home in my heart, with rotten wood it decayed from the start.
'Cause you can find nothing at all, if there was nothing there all along.
I wouldn't include some lyrics that are well known as to me, they seem to try too hard to be poetic and whistful. But I'm no poetry expert on any level - I even decided to leave "Awop-bop-a-loo-bop-awop-bam-boom" off the list.
And what of today's musicians? - I am sure that there are many examples. Over to you readers - does anyone have any suggestions?