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Wanna ride?

July 25, 2021

I thought this week’s Song Lyric Sunday would be simple: share a song about a car. There was Springsteen and Prince and Springsteen again. And again. And again. Chuck Berry, The Beatles. I thought about The Doobie Brothers. And then I thought about the Doobie Brothers again. I think I’m the only person in the world who hasn’t sung a song about a car and I’m not a singer. I thought about Molly Hatchet, about Deep Purple, and I thought about (and this is a really good song) Greg Brown and Tom Waits

I thought about others…

I briefly thought about a Greyhound bus and The Grateful Dead covering Chuck Berry’s The Promised Land

Thankfully I didn’t think about trains or I’d never get anywhere!

Or semi-trucks.

And then I thought, why am I thinking about cars when Jim’s prompt clearly says that Our theme this week is Automobile, Car, Jalopy, Vehicle and that’s when I thought about a motorcycle – because that’s a vehicle, right? – and this wonderful ballad from Richard Thompson from his Rumor and Sigh album, 1952 Vincent Black Lightning.

Wikipedia tells us Richard Thompson is an English singer, songwriter, and guitarist and a lot of other interesting information. I can tell you that he’s a great singer, a great songwriter and is one of the best guitar players on the planet. And he’s funny.

Hopefully you’ll enjoy this “simple boy meets girl story” which is “complicated somewhat by the presence of a motorcycle”. If you like story songs, I think you’ll like it. If you watch the video I hope you like it more than the guitar player in the khaki pants on the far right.

Says Red Molly, to James, “Well that’s a fine motorbike.
A girl could feel special on any such like.”
Says James, to Red Molly, “My hat’s off to you, it’s a Vincent Black Lightning, 1952.

And I’ve seen you on the corners and cafes, it seems.
Red hair and black leather, my favorite color scheme.”
And he pulled her on behind, and down to Boxhill they’d ride.

Says James, to Red Molly, “Here’s a ring for your right hand.
But I’ll tell you in earnest I’m a dangerous man;
For I’ve fought with the law since I was seventeen.
I’ve robbed many a man to get my Vincent machine.

I thought this week’s Song Lyric Sunday would be simple: share a song about a car. There was Springsteen and Prince and Springsteen again. And again. And again. Dylan, The Beatles. I think I’m the only person in the world who hasn’t sung a song about a car and I’m not a singer. I thought The Doobie Brothers, Deep Purple, The Doobie Brothers again, or Greg Brown, or Tom Waits…

I thought about others…

And then I thought, why am I thinking about cars when Jim’s prompt clearly says that Our theme this week is Automobile, Car, Jalopy, Vehicle and that’s when I thought about a motorcycle – because that’s a vehicle, right? – and this wonderful ballad from Richard Thompson from his Rumor and Sigh album, 1952 Vincent Black Lightning.

Wikipedia tells us Richard Thompson is an English singer, songwriter, and guitarist and a lot of other interesting information. I can tell you that he’s a great singer, a great songwriter and is one of the best guitar players on the planet. And he’s funny.

Hopefully you’ll enjoy this “simple boy meets girl story” which is “complicated somewhat by the presence of a motorcycle”. If you like story songs, I think you’ll like it.

Says Red Molly, to James, “Well that’s a fine motorbike.
A girl could feel special on any such like.”
Says James, to Red Molly, “My hat’s off to you, it’s a Vincent Black Lightning, 1952.

And I’ve seen you on the corners and cafes, it seems.
Red hair and black leather, my favorite color scheme.”
And he pulled her on behind, and down to Boxhill they’d ride.

Says James, to Red Molly, “Here’s a ring for your right hand.
But I’ll tell you in earnest I’m a dangerous man;
For I’ve fought with the law since I was seventeen.
I’ve robbed many a man to get my Vincent machine.

And now I’m twenty-one years, I might make twenty-two.
And I don’t mind dyin’ but for the love of you.
But if fate should break my stride, then I’ll give you my Vincent, to ride.”

“Come down Red Molly,” called Sargent McQuade.
“For they’ve taken young James Aidee for armed robbery.
Shotgun blast hit his chest, left nothing inside.
Oh, come down, Red Molly, to his dying bedside.”

When she came to the hospital, there wasn’t much left.
He was runnin’ out of road. He was runnin’ out of breath.
But he smiled, to see her cry and said, “I’ll give you my Vincent to ride.”

Said James, “In my opinion, there’s nothing in this world
beats a ’52 Vincent and a Redheaded girl.
Now Triumphs and Nortons and Greevses won’t do, they don’t have a Soul like a Vincent ’52.”

And he reached for her hand and he slipped her the keys.
He said, “I’ve got no further use…for these. I see Angels on Ariels in leather and chrome,
Swoopin’ down from Heaven to carry me home.”

And he gave her one last kiss and died. And he gave her his Vincent to ride.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 25, 2021 1:48 pm

    This song is very enjoyable Michael, thanks for sharing it,

    Like

  2. July 25, 2021 1:55 pm

    First two songs that popped into my mind were Hitchin’ a Ride by Vanity Fare and Leader of the Pack by the Shangri La’s. I love hearing those old songs again.

    Like

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