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Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans

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CITY OF NEW ORLEANS


Related threads:
(origins) Origins: City of New Orleans (38)
Lyr Req: New York parody of 'City of New Orleans' (3)
City of New Orleans (61)
Chords Req: City of New Orleans (20)
Lyr Add: The City of New Orleans (Steve Goodman) (6) (closed)


Wrinkles 30 Jan 05 - 06:45 AM
GUEST 30 Jan 05 - 06:11 PM
Brakn 30 Jan 05 - 08:43 PM
Brakn 30 Jan 05 - 08:47 PM
DonMeixner 30 Jan 05 - 11:32 PM
Brakn 31 Jan 05 - 04:55 AM
Wrinkles 31 Jan 05 - 06:26 AM
breezy 31 Jan 05 - 07:12 AM
DonMeixner 31 Jan 05 - 05:24 PM
McGrath of Harlow 31 Jan 05 - 06:30 PM
Wrinkles 31 Jan 05 - 08:40 PM
GUEST,Art Thieme 31 Jan 05 - 10:05 PM
Wrinkles 01 Feb 05 - 07:19 AM
DonMeixner 01 Feb 05 - 12:03 PM
McGrath of Harlow 01 Feb 05 - 03:48 PM
Joe Offer 01 Feb 05 - 07:42 PM
Auggie 01 Feb 05 - 11:19 PM
GUEST,Art Thieme 02 Feb 05 - 03:02 PM
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Subject: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: Wrinkles
Date: 30 Jan 05 - 06:45 AM

I've been told there's a 4th verse to the Goodman song "City of New Orleans", never recorded, that Goodman only does/did at live concerts.

Does anyone know if this is true and what the lyrics are?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Jan 05 - 06:11 PM


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: Brakn
Date: 30 Jan 05 - 08:43 PM

I used to play with a guy who sang a middle 8 beginning with "It's twilight in the City of New Orleans". Can't remember anymore than that.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: Brakn
Date: 30 Jan 05 - 08:47 PM

"But its twilight on the City of New Orleans.
Talk about your pocket full of friends
Half way home, and we'll be there by mornin'
With no tomorrow waitin' around the bend."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: DonMeixner
Date: 30 Jan 05 - 11:32 PM

I believe that "Twilight" verse was written by John Denver and included on his rcording of "The City of New Orleans". Denver didn't record the last verse as written by Steve Goodman.

And I know that Goodman wasn't thrilled with the change to his song.
I know this because I asked him when I was a stage hand at a concert and his reply was definately negative.

Don


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: Brakn
Date: 31 Jan 05 - 04:55 AM

Thanks for that Don. I always wondered about it.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: Wrinkles
Date: 31 Jan 05 - 06:26 AM

My thanks too Don.

Given the circumstances you questioned Goodman you'd have heard a 4th verse if there was one, and the Denver half verse "Twilight" always sounded a bit dodgy to me BIRC he bowlderized the lyrics too removing the line "old black men" too; replacing it with something more PC.

I guess the "4th verse" is a myth. Which begs the question "What's the folkie equivalent of Urban Myth?" ;-)

Wrinkles


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: breezy
Date: 31 Jan 05 - 07:12 AM

change 'twilight ' to 'midnight'

how does Judy Collins do it?

Did the bridge count as a verse?

Wrinkles, Show us what you have then I can compare it to mine!!!!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: DonMeixner
Date: 31 Jan 05 - 05:24 PM

Regards John Denver and a PC treatment to CON, I doubt it was an attempt a Political Correctness. This was on the Album "Arie", about 1971 or 1972. Politcal Correctness was a movement back then.
I had heard Denver do the song as it was written in concert. The changed version may have been at the request of the record label.


I think Judy Collins does the normal third verse which starts
"Nightime on the City of New Orleans" and it is just like everyone elses version. Steve Goodman told me he though Arlo Guthrie's version of the song was the best on record. I disagree of course. I think Goodman's was the best ever was.

Don


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 31 Jan 05 - 06:30 PM

Here's a quote from an interview Steve did over in England, where he indicates he wasn't too happy with John Denver's tinkerings with the song. (Though Steve is pretty well-mannered about it):

John Denver learned it from me in a hotel in New York where he was staying and he said "Steve, I really want to record this, but I don't think it is commercial the way it is and I want to re-write the last verse because I think I can say something with it." I said 'Go ahead' - I could have told him not to, so it's my fault. ... Still it was nice of John to even consider doing the song, but what I'm really happy about is that the version with the right lyrics is the one that caught on".


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: Wrinkles
Date: 31 Jan 05 - 08:40 PM

Breezy I've got recordings of the Steve Goodman, Arlo Guthrie, John Denver, Jonny Cash, and Willie Nelson versions. All all slightly different (some more than others such as Denver's) but all 3 verses each.

The first time I heard about the "4th verse" was from festival organiser Geoff Harden who said he'd heard the 4th verse performed by Goodman, but not being a singer himself didn't recall the lyrics (knowing Geoff a verse may have only been repeated and he recalled the numbers of verses not their content ). Since then quite a few other folk over the years have asked or told me about the 4th verse's existence - if not its content - except for Geoff himself it was always FOAF stuff of course.

Some of those versions have musical bridges, but none with lyrics. I'd be very interested to know of a version that has a bridge with Lyrics ;-)

Personally, when I play it "straight", my version is very close indeed to the Arlo Gutherie version, the main alterations I make are changing "native son" to "native child" (in my cluture, and that of the audience I used to perform this tune for, a train is a "she", so "son" wasn't obviously the train; in the interests of clarity the "son" had to go. However "daughter" didn't fit so I settled for the genderless "child") and pronouncing "New Orleans" with a palatised N in "new" and "orleans" with 3 distinct vowels, a retroflex L, and nasalised final N which is closer to the francophone pronouciation of that City than the standard anglophone GA "or-leenz"

To get a bond with some audiences, I'd occasionally do a light hearted version and change "kankakee" to somewhere local with three syllables which ended in "ee" (eg; in Northern Ireland it became "Tandragee") and the 1st line of the refraim to "good morning _wherever_" ;-). This made it a good opening number when in new territory!

Back in those days I was club resident singer and frequently hired as a warm-up for a name, so songs one could use to get the audience listening and participating from the get-go were goddess sent for the job of leaving a primed receptive crowd for the headliner ;-)

Wrinkles


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 31 Jan 05 - 10:05 PM

I've a recording of meself doing this song that I wanted to put on a CD---BUT I'd made a unique mistake in it.

"Grave yards filled with old black men..."

No way could I use it.

Art


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: Wrinkles
Date: 01 Feb 05 - 07:19 AM

And what was filled with "rusted automobiles" then Art? ;-)

Why couldn't you use the line anyway? I remember Geogria during segregation and the graveyards _were_ segregated then and no doubt all around the South those graveyards are still there; the dead being somewhat famous for not moving around alot; so "graveyards filled with old black men" would indeed have been a feature of the landscape the train passed through in the South, a silent reminder of institutionalised bigotry.
I'd have no problems with that change meself.

Much less than the visible wince I gave when I 1st heard that line changed to "freightyards full of old GREY men"; sheesh.

Wrinkles


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: DonMeixner
Date: 01 Feb 05 - 12:03 PM

Art,

What was the song with "500 lbs and My Daughter for awhile" in it?

You have some very Freudian moments.

Don


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 01 Feb 05 - 03:48 PM

That interview I linked with has some stuff about people trying to turn the "old black men" into "old grey men".


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: Joe Offer
Date: 01 Feb 05 - 07:42 PM

Muy brother was a music promoter in Milwaukee in the 1970's and 1980's, and he booked Steve Goodman many times and spent a good amount of time with him. Here's what he says:I don't remember Steve Goodman changing the lyrics to "City of New Orleans" in concert, and I was aware of John Denver changing the lyrics. I also remember hearing that Steve wasn't happy about it, but I don't remember the source. I don't think it was mentioned at his shows, either on or off-stage. -Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: Auggie
Date: 01 Feb 05 - 11:19 PM

I've heard Goodman as well and never heard him change the words either, but... I don't think there was ever anyone with a quicker (nor more engaging) wit and I have heard him make up songs on the spot in response to audience requests. It wouldn't have been out of character for him to really have invented the mysterious fourth verse.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 4th verse? City of New Orleans
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 02 Feb 05 - 03:02 PM

It was Fleming Brown who, on the fly, changed the lyric to "Golden Vanity". I used to tell about his doing before I'd do that song.

I don't even remember the correct way any more.

Fleming sang:

The Captain looked down, and the Captain he did smile,

So he made up the next line:

"5000 pounds and my daughter for a while."

Art


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