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Lyr Req: The Hustler (Eric Andersen)

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BLIND FIDDLER 2
I SHALL GO UNBOUNDED
THIRSTY BOOTS
VIOLETS OF DAWN


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louie louie 02 Aug 06 - 11:59 PM
GUEST,Casey Graham 23 Sep 10 - 03:44 PM
GUEST,jtflash49 03 Feb 11 - 12:49 PM
GUEST,Morgana 03 Feb 11 - 07:36 PM
GUEST,Morgana 03 Feb 11 - 10:14 PM
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Subject: Lyr Req: 'The Hustler' (E. Andersen)
From: louie louie
Date: 02 Aug 06 - 11:59 PM

From "Bout Changes and Things" (1966). I've tried to transcribe from my CD, but I don't trust what I'm hearing. On some level, I know it's a dig on Dylan and the folk (folk-rock) scene, circa 65-66. Does anyone know if anything specific prompted it (besides general jealousies and resentment at Dylan's put-downs), what reactions the Greenwich Village regulars had (if any)? I know producer Tom Wilson was fired by Dylan in August 65, and Wilson thereafter did work with Andersen. Any backstory there? Thanks.


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE HUSTLER (Eric Andersen)
From: GUEST,Casey Graham
Date: 23 Sep 10 - 03:44 PM

This is two years late, but here is what I've transcribed:

THE HUSTLER
(Eric Andersen)

Oh, you can try to run me down
But you can't try me underground
When you're not there I'll be around
To haunt you, I won't make a sound
To track you, I don't need a hound
You think you're lost, I've got you found
You're surrounded, though you think that they can't see.

Your castle walls, they all will fall
You'll be surprised that all-in-all
Nobody really cares at all
You won't believe the beggar's gall
That can bite your heels when you crawl
That pain can come from those so small
Ignore you when you kick the stall
Go cry wolf, or better, you should scream!

Though you're not on top, you think you're first
The surgeon's scalpel, steal the nurse
Who can let others feel the hurt
When you're the driver of the hearse
So you'll feel bad, but they'll worse
Without you, where would the doctor be?

I'm watching you, but not quite like before
I will find you, you're the one I'm a-lookin' for
And when it's over don't say sorry anymore

A brushless painter runnin' down
Into the night to paint the town
While putting everybody on
Blowing smoke rings for the clown
You brag to those you've been around
They listen to your silly sounds
Disciples pass your bread around
The cross is hidden in your gown
They think that they're on holy ground
Not knowing Judas watches from the trees!

While posing as the saint of need
Godfather to the one who's weak
By using words like "sad defeat"
You laugh that you've got a losing beat
The girls all giggle at your feet
Squealing people that you meet
You might get made, but be discreet
Don't take your mask off, trick or treat
As you get the stars down on their knees
But do you really think you have fortune beat?

Believing in the magic noose
That trips the egg, the golden goose
And with it, you can never lose
While fairy tales are still the truth
Don't let go, hey, don't let loose
For the goose is flapping on the roof
And without its wings, how can you be free?

I'm watching you, but not quite like before
Hey, hey! You're the one I'm a-lookin' for
And when it's over don't say sorry anymore.

Lone Ranger, he just rides along
Protecting those that don't belong
In the land where there's no right or wrong
Tonto, he just loads his gun
For killing outlaws one by one
And shooting in-laws just for fun
While the jungle laws are on the run
Step out before you get stepped on
You say this with your war paint on
Afraid if you're in the dark too long
Because you know the jungle's no place for the meek!

You say life is absurdity
A carnival for melodies
You eye the big-time bitterly
Set the stage so faithfully
The hawk for forlorn mystery (?)
While marching so religiously
As the army that has paid to see
The choirboy of reality
Laugh at all authority
You smile oh-so-cynically
The sole possessor of his key
But it's sad to know that's all you'll ever be.

Though you said keep on the sunny side
That life is just a rainbow ride
A silver-studded surfboard glide
On the wine of waves to keep you high
Don't hit the moon if you fly too wide
It'll bring you down below the tide
Where no one keeps their tears inside
The waters hide them if you cry
For in the waves, there are no mysteries.

I'm watching you, but not quite like before
I will find you, you're the one I'm a-lookin' for
And when it's over, don't say sorry anymore.

The key on "Bout Changes and Things" is F#, and it follows a pretty standard pattern.

(I)Oh, you can try to (Imaj7)run me down
But (IV)you can't try me (I)underground
When (IV)you're not there I'll (I)be around
To (IV)haunt you, I won't (I)make a sound
To (IV)track you, I don't (I)need a hound
You (IV)think you're lost, I've (I)got you found
You're (vi)surrounded, though you think that they can't (V)see.

I'm (IV)watching you, but (I)not quite like before
(IV)I will find you, you're the (V) one I'm a-lookin' for
And when it's (I) over, don't say (V)sorry anymore.

As for the meaning of the song, I've just generally classified it in the same realm as "Violets of Dawn" - not really about anything, almost psychedelic in its absurdity and the playfulness of its rhymes.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Hustler (Eric Andersen)
From: GUEST,jtflash49
Date: 03 Feb 11 - 12:49 PM

Good transcription. As for the meaning, there are just too many Dylan references to be coincidence. I don't know too much about Eric's relationship in the early days with Dylan but it is no secret that Bob alienated a lot of other performers who were coming up at the same time he did in New York. He reportedly was merciless in his criticism of Phil Ochs and surrounded himself with a small band of loyal running partners that protected and encouraged his rants. With this in mind, its not hard to go through the lyric and see many clever observations and putdowns, often using stinging references to Bob's own lyrics.
Anyone who is a fan of Eric's should make it a point to find out where he's playing and get out and see him. He's an American treasure.


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE HUSTLER (Eric Andersen)
From: GUEST,Morgana
Date: 03 Feb 11 - 07:36 PM

The following is transcribed from the back of my "Changes 'n' Things" record. I don't hold that LP's are better than CD's, but this would make a nice piece of evidence about the superiority of their liner notes. :D

THE HUSTLER
(Eric Andersen)

Oh, you can try to run me down
But you can't drive me underground
When you're not there I'll be around
To haunt you, I won't make a sound
To track you, I don't need a hound
You think you're lost, I've got you found
You're surrounded, though you think that they can't see.

Your castle walls, they all will fall
You'll be surprised that all-in-all
Nobody really cares at all
You won't believe the beggar's gall
That can bite your heels when you crawl
That pain can come from those so small
Ignore you when you kick the stall
Go cry wolf, or better, you should scream!

Though you're not on top, you think you're first
Some surgeon's scalpel stealin' nurse
Who can let others feel the hurt
When you're the driver of the hearse
So you'll feel bad but they'll feel worse
Without you what would the doctor be?

I'm watching you, but not quite like before
I will find you, you're the one I'm a-lookin' for
And when it's over don't say sorry anymore

A brushless painter runnin' down
Into the night to paint the town
While putting everybody on
Blowing smoke rings for the clowns
You brag of those you've been around
They listen to your silly sounds
Disciples pass your bread around
While the cross is hidden in your gown
They think that they're on holy ground
Not knowing Judas watches from the trees!

While posing as the saint of need
Godfather to the one who's weak
By using words like "sad defeat"
You laugh that you've got losing beat
The girls all giggle at your feet
The squealing people that you meet
You might get made, but be discreet
Don't take your mask off, trick or treat
As you get the stars down on their knees
But do you really think you have fortune beat?

Believing in the magic noose
That trips the egg, the golden goose
And with it, you can never lose
While fairy tales are still the truth
But don't let go, hey, don't let loose
For the goose is flapping on the roof
And without its wings, how can you be free?

I'm watching you, but not quite like before
Hey, hey! You're the one I'm a-lookin' for
And when it's over don't say sorry anymore.

Lone Ranger, he just rides along
Protecting those that don't belong
In the land where there's no right or wrong
As tonto, you just load his gun
For killing outlaws one by one
And shooting inlaws just for fun
While the jungle laws are on the run
Step out before you get stepped on
You say this with your war paint on
Afraid if you're in the dark too long
'Cause you know the jungle's no place for the meek!

You say life is absurdity
A carnival for melodies
You eye the big-time bitterly
And set the stage so faithfully
The hawker for lord mystery
While marching so religiously
As the army that has paid to see
The choirboy of reality
Laugh at all authority
You smile oh-so-cynically
The sole possessor of his key
But it's sad to know that's all you'll ever be.

You said keep on the sunny side
That life was just a rainbow ride
A silver-studded surfboard glide
On the wine of waves to keep you high
Don't hit the moon if you fly too wide
It'll bring you down below the tide
Where no one keeps their tears inside
The waters hide them if you cry
For in the waves, there are no mysteries.

I'm watching you, but not quite like before
I will find you, you're the one I'm a-lookin' for
And when it's over, don't say sorry anymore.

I added a few minor corrections to these, but overall the previous transcription is pretty accurate. An impressive feat, as this is such a long song. I could never venture a guess as to exactly what these lyrics mean; since it's such a diverse combination of common images, I might call it somewhat of a stream of consciousness. Luckily, this is also on the album: "The Hustler" is about people who hustle fame. We are most familiar with the money variety. It's about those who try to rub shoulders with God then sell you a piece of his cloud. It's about those who hustle cigarettes from Joan Baez even though they know show doesn't smoke." -- Eric Anderson


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Hustler (Eric Andersen)
From: GUEST,Morgana
Date: 03 Feb 11 - 10:14 PM

Sorry, about the typos; the quote should read this.

"The Hustler is about people who hustle fame. We are most familiar with the money variety. It's about those who try to rub shoulders with God then sell you a piece of his cloud. It's about those who hustle cigarettes from Joan Baez even though they know she doesn't smoke." -- Eric Anderson


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