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Lyr Add: Bus 22 to Bethlehem (Bobby Cole)

GUEST,Diana 21 Dec 06 - 02:36 PM
McGrath of Harlow 21 Dec 06 - 07:53 PM
Wolfgang 23 Dec 06 - 12:36 PM
Wolfgang 23 Dec 06 - 12:39 PM
GUEST,illfolks 29 Jan 11 - 12:47 AM
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Subject: Lyr Add: BUS 22 TO BETHLEHEM (Bobby Cole)
From: GUEST,Diana
Date: 21 Dec 06 - 02:36 PM

Some years ago someone posted a message saying they would like to see the lyrics for "Bus 22 to Bethlehem" again. This is a Bobby Cole song - the flipside of the jukebox 45 RPM that had Mr. BoJangles.


(Bobby Cole)

We rode a bus that was taking us to the town of Bethlehem,
We left at 8:00 from Damascus gate on the edge of Jerusalem,
With old King David at the wheel we rode along our way,
Past the holy manger store and the 3 wise men café.

Seven thousand people filled the square,
The mayor and the governor were there,
Voices from the horde cried, "We want the Lord"
They were getting bored in Bethlehem.

Old men waved from the limestone caves from the friendly factories,
And everyone was laden down with plaster rosaries
With crucifixes, quartered lambs andStar of David pins,
With misty eyes and zoom zoom eyes, we watched the show again.

Five men dressed in ashes blew their horns,
A man put on a crown of paper thorns,
He gave an upward toss to his plastic cross;
We were all impressed in Bethlehem.

It represents that sad ascent to the hills of Calvary,
From underneath a rhinestone bell Mrs. Jones replied I see.
In the dark the Patriarch was busy with his books,
While the Christians and the Muslims exchanged frozen looks.

Come and see the twisted Olive trees;
Twisted by the passing centuries.
All you have to do if you're passing thru,
Take Bus 22 to Bethlehem.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Bus 22 to Bethlehem (Bobby Cole)
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 21 Dec 06 - 07:53 PM

Things are a bit different in Bethlehem these days - "'We are facing the hardest Christmas yet'" :

In Bethlehem itself, Victor Batarseh, the mayor, looks from his office into the doorway of the Church of the Nativity. He blames the checkpoints and closures for the economic crisis that has shaken his town. Unemployment is 65%, large parts of the town's farmland have been taken up by the West Bank barrier, and a financial boycott on the Palestinian Authority has meant no salaries have been paid at the municipality for four months.

"This year is I think the hardest Christmas we are facing," he said. "The wall is turning this city into a big prison for its citizens."

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Bus 22 to Bethlehem (Bobby Cole)
From: Wolfgang
Date: 23 Dec 06 - 12:36 PM

An old thread with a first attempt at the lyrics.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Bus 22 to Bethlehem (Bobby Cole)
From: Wolfgang
Date: 23 Dec 06 - 12:39 PM

I forgot to say thank you for the lyrics. It's a big improvement on the first version.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Bus 22 to Bethlehem (Bobby Cole)
From: GUEST,illfolks
Date: 29 Jan 11 - 12:47 AM

A few revisions.

Not "plaster rosaries." It's "crafted rosaries."

Not "zoom zoom eyes." It's "zoom zoom pies." (I know, but Bobby was pretty indignant that nobody heard of this snack.)

Mrs. Jones was not underneath a "rhinestone bell." She spoke from underneath her "rhinestone veil."

The first time I ever met Bobby, I was at the Savoy Grill where he was performing with his trio. Between sets, I told him I was a big fan of "Bus 22 to Bethlehem." He looked appropriate surprised, did that DeNiro squint, and said, "Stick around, I wanna talk with you!"

And after the last set of the night, we did talk, and we became very good and close friends. Funny thing about the song is that the recording was almost an afterthought. He'd spent a lot of time arranging and recording the A-side, Walker's "Mr. Bojangles." George Martin probably didn't work as hard on "Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite." With all the studio time given to that track, he only ran through his own tune "Bus 22" a few times before laying it down, with basic folk-rock guitar at the forefront.

One of my all-time favorite songs by Bobby, so I did go over the lyrics with him...not sure what kind of rosaries they were, or what the "zoom zoom" was all about!

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