TRACKER:
OFFICIAL LYRICS

INCLUDING BONUS TRACKS

Laughs and Jokes and Drinks and Smokes

Laughs and jokes
And drinks and smokes
And no lights on the stairs
We were young, so young
And always broke
Not that we ever cared
Not that we ever cared

Well, the holes in the walls
Were such a lot
Welcome to London town
But when you’re new to it all
And you think you’re hot
You’re not planning on hanging around
People would go on their different ways
I left to start a band
A note came through the letter box
In your childlike hand

Oh, laughs and jokes
And drinks and smokes
And no lights on the stairs
We were young, so young
And always broke
Not that we ever cared
Not that we ever cared

One day I rode to where you were
The doorbell jangled a note
They buzzed me in
I climbed the stairs
In my boots and leather coat
There’s an old brass
Standing there at the top
Without her witch’s broom
It almost seemed like a knocking shop
When the girls came out of their rooms

And they all stood around
And stared at me
Two brunettes and a blonde
Then the old brass shrugged and said
We don’t know where she’s gone
Later on I picked up the ball
And I took off down the line
I suppose by then I’d realised
You’d run into hard times

Oh, laughs and jokes
And drinks and smokes
And no lights on the stairs
We were young, so young
And always broke
Not that we ever cared
Not that we ever cared

 

Basil

My Saturday job pays six and six down
A copy boy at the Chronicle
Five cigarettes and two silver half crowns
Meeting Vince at Mark Toney’s in town
Boy, do we get around

Basil sits there on the table for subs
But not a part of the Bri-nylon club
Ancient blue sweater, too old for the job
Bored out of his mind
With the Colins and Bobs

I’m a jack and a lad
And I’m up for the world
And I’ve kissed a Gateshead girl

He calls for a copy boy, grumpy as hell
Poets have to eat as well
What he wouldn’t give just to walk out today
To have time to think about time
And young love thrown away

I’m a jack and a lad
And I’m up for the world
And I’ve kissed a Gateshead girl

Starlings swarming
A cloud over Grainger Street
Over the black church
Over the Black Gate
And the shadowy Keep

He peers through his wire rims
At the fish and chip words
He’s supposed to dish up and forget
His drudgery now has become slightly blurred
By one of his Players untipped cigarettes

Bury all joy
Put the poems in sacks
And bury me here with the hacks

In the summer the fair
Will stretch over the Moor
Lovers will lie and make out in the park
Basil puts on his old duffel and scarf
And goes out into the dark

 

River Towns

I came in three days early
To meet my boat
It ain’t the life of Riley
But it’s keeping me afloat
It’s quiet over Christmas
If you got no place to go
I got my home from river rats
The only home I know

I found myself a flophouse
And I hit the streets at nine
Get some grub and drink a beer
Maybe go down the line
These chips will take your money
Shake a young man down
It’s the same in every one of these
Sorry river towns

River towns, sorry river towns
River towns
River towns, sorry river towns
River towns

Well I picked me up a bottle
To take back to the room
Then I saw a young girl standing
In a doorway in the gloom
We’d hardly started talking
The old scenario
And I just let her work me over
Down by the Ohio

River towns, sorry river towns
River towns
River towns, sorry river towns
River towns

When I asked her if she’d like to stay
She was down my stairs so quick
I never asked what got her started
With the sorry river tricks
So I get the bottle open
But something’s hit a nerve
And I’m looking in the mirror
At the face that I deserve

River towns, sorry river towns
River towns
River towns, sorry river towns
River towns

 

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Skydiver

I’ve been banned from every racecourse in the country
There’s something about the unsure thing
Like scoring with a beauty of the county
It always makes the old bell ring

I like to go for broke and I’ll be randy
It’s got to be the unsure thing
In the Bentley Continental with the brandy
It always makes the old bell ring

And when it’s gone, all gone
I’ll stand on a hilltop and sing
I go where I want, I do what I want
And I don’t give a damn about a thing

Skydiver

Today I lost a packet at Wincanton
Dive Bomber in the 2.15
All on the nose and no-one counting
Nothing wishy-washy in between

Back when I made the pivotal decision
To take a winding road that I could see
It was just like being given an incredible permission
The rules don’t apply to me

And when it’s gone, all gone
I’ll stand on a hilltop and sing
I go where I want, I do what I want
And I don’t give a damn about a thing

Skydiver

I’m not being brave, it’s my money, not my life
When I need to take a break from the brushes and the knife
And I always took a fancy to the ones
Heading straight into the teeth of the guns

Skydiver

 

Mighty Man

A room on the top floor
And the chest all but knackered
Two fingers not working
And the back’s shot to hell
It’s a lifetime of digging trenches
In the cold and wet weather
And for laying half the roadway
In England as well

You’d finish in the one place
It was straight to the next one
And you never could settle
And you were always alone
Just a drifter in limbo
I was best off away, son
Just one of the thousands
Who could never go home

That’s your mighty man, son
Your mighty man

Well, the boat and the train ride
In a misty November
We had the worst of the lodgings
And we hated the subs
Ma’s face on the leaving
I will always remember
And we wouldn’t get paid
Until they had closed up their pubs

And I could stand up on horseback
Was the man for the singing
Put my hand up for boxing
At the fairground on the heath
I could play my accordion
And charm all of the women
And dance round the taproom
With a chair in my teeth

That’s your mighty man, son
Your mighty man
That’s your mighty man, son
Your mighty man

 

Broken Bones

She likes a man with a broken nose
Lucky for me, I suppose
Shots coming in like the monthly bills
Soon they’ll be saying I’m over the hill

Well the bell goes clang and you’re on your own
You take your medicine and go home
You take it like a man, on the chin
And you don’t make a fuss when the towel comes in

Now let me go home, got to lay in ice
And I don’t want to hear no more advice
Just give me my clothes
Get me out of this place
How many more stitches in my face?

Those broken bones, you pick ‘em up and carry ‘em
Broken bones, you carry ‘em home
Broken bones, you pick ‘em up and carry ‘em
Broken bones, you carry ‘em home

He had the punch lines, I was the joke
Every shot felt like something broke
It was all much more than a man should stand
And I finally went down to a big right hand

Now let me go home, got to lay in ice
And I don’t want to hear no more advice
Just give me my clothes
Get me out of this place
How many more stitches in my face?

Those broken bones, you pick ‘em up and carry ‘em
Broken bones, you carry ‘em home
Broken bones, you pick ‘em up and carry ‘em
Broken bones, you carry ‘em home

Broken bones, you pick ‘em up and carry ‘em
Broken bones, you carry ‘em home
Broken bones, you pick ‘em up and carry ‘em
Broken bones, you carry ‘em home

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Long, Cool Girl


All I do is think of you
As I go around the world
All I do is think of you
Long, cool girl

Long, cool girl
I like to say her name
Long, cool girl
With a showgirl frame

You took a look at me
I took a look at you
Now I just can’t see
What a man’s supposed to do

Long, cool girl
I like to say her name
Long, cool girl
With a showgirl frame

Me and you we’re 3 and 2
Something’s gonna happen now, it has to
Me and you we’re 3 and 2
Something’s gonna happen now, it has to

Pressure drop and weather change
All around the world
You got me at point blank range
Long, cool girl

Long, cool girl
I like to say her name
Long, cool girl
With a showgirl frame

All I do is think of you
As I go around the world
All I do is think of you
Long, cool girl

 

Lights of Taomina

There’s laughter in the darkness
Music floating in across the bay
He’s half listening and wondering
How he could have let her slip away
So long ago but still he wants to know
If anyone has seen her
And he’s sitting out in the night
Looking down upon the lights of Taormina

They were young and love was shining
Like the colours of the rainbow
Desire felt like choking
Love was smoking under the volcano
He can still taste her kisses
Sweet as the red wine from Messina
Now he’s sitting out in the night
Looking down upon the lights of Taormina

Seems like another lifetime
When they rambled along the shore
Seems like another lifetime
She used to call him her sweet senor
Maybe in another lifetime
On a pathway to the sea
Maybe there they’ll be

The crowd calls for the emperor
Raise their hands to hail another king
But he’s been so long a wanderer
Another crowd can never mean a thing
He came, he saw, he conquered
Ten thousand voices roared in the arena
Now he’s sitting out in the night
Looking down upon the lights of Taormina

He hears the chimes of history
Myths of gods and men forever ringing
Ancient dreams in all their mystery
Wars for Sicily and Spartan women
In the mists of antiquity
Ships of war set sail from Carthagina
Now he’s sitting out in the night
Looking down upon the lights of Taormina
Sitting out in the night
Looking down upon the lights of Taormina

 

Silver Eagle

It was so late and she’d be sleeping
He came through her home town
With the moonlight on the crossroads
And the green light shining down
And the bell at the railroad crossing
And the horn from far away
And his Silver Eagle passing
Half a mile from where she lay

At his feet a sea of faces
Make devotions with their love
Clap their hands and plead their cases
Call for blessings from above
Like the rolling waves forever massing
To crash and foam and creep away
And the Silver Eagle passing
Half a mile from where she lay

Road signs flow into the headlights
Whisper names and fall behind
He finds some honor in the darkness
Hopes for grace and peace of mind
And he thinks of how they’d lay together
He’d run his fingers through her hair
And he wonders if she’ll ever
Come to know that he was there

 

Beryl

Beryl was on another level
When she got a Booker medal
She was dead in her grave
After all she gave
After all she gave

Beryl, every time they’d overlook her
When they gave her a Booker
She was dead in her grave
After all she gave
After all she gave

It’s all too late now
It’s all too late now
It’s too late, you dabblers
It’s all too late
It’s too late, you dabblers
It’s all too late

Beryl, the tobacco overtook her
When they gave her a Booker
She was dead in her grave
After all she gave
After all she gave

It’s all too late now
It’s all too late now
It’s too late, you dabblers
It’s all too late
It’s too late, you dabblers
It’s all too late

Beryl was on another level
When she got a Booker medal
She was dead in her grave
After all she gave
After all she gave
After all she gave
After all she gave

 

Wherever I Go featuring Ruth Moody

Maybe I’m bound to wander
From one place to the next
Heaven knows why
But in the wild blue yonder
Your star is fixed in my sky

Just another bar at a crossroads
So far from home
But that’s alright
Whenever I’m going down a dark road
I don’t feel alone in the night

There’s a place in my heart
Though we’re far apart
May you always know
No matter how long since I saw you
I’ll keep a flame there for you
Wherever I go

They’re looking to close up in here
They’re pulling down the blinds
But they’ll let you stay awhile
They’re not going to mind

Now I’ve got to leave you, brother
So this round’s mine
Here’s looking at you, anyhow
You can go on and have another
They won’t call time
I’m going to say my goodbyes now

There’s a place in my heart
Though we’re far apart
May you always know
No matter how long since I saw you
I’ll keep a flame there for you
Wherever I go

 

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.38 Special

The fate of a roving gambler
Is waiting down the bloodthirsty highway
The highway is my home, I’m a rambler
And I have to pay the devil every day

Now if I should owe a friend a million dollars
He knows my guarantee is sound
If we should get hijacked by robbers
There’d be no big money laying all around

I may be gone to the devil
But I ain’t rollin’ over for you
If you’ve got a pistol in your pocket
I’ve got my .38 Special too

Are you dancing for the payers of the piper?
Are you jumping through your party hoops for them?
You won’t see any nine to fivers
At the tables of my poker playing friends

So take your politician or your banker
Take your friendly health insurance man
I never met a cold hearted gambler
Could carry off a hustle like they can

I may be gone to the devil
But I ain’t rollin’ over for you
If you’ve got a pistol in your pocket
I’ve got my .38 Special too

 

My Heart Has Never Changed

My car’s in for a brake job
Be ready in a while
Something about the waitress
Made me think about your smile
I tip her a ten spot
And I try to read her name
I’m just an old long hauler
A grinder at the game

Heaven knows the highways
Since we’ve been apart
But my heart don’t feel like leaving
Or you won’t leave my heart
Now and then I might take
A little something for pain
But there’s nothing much for heartache
And my heart has never changed
My heart has never changed

Now there’s no more rough and tumble
Down Highway 199
Nothing lasts forever
I just miss it sometimes

She comes to pour more coffee
But it’s time to see more world
I pick up my check and keys
And go and pay the girl
My mind’s in Hell’s Half Acre
And the rooms along Exchange
And the scenes are always shifting
But my heart has never changed
My heart has never changed

 

Terminal of Tribute To

On the road again in cabaret
Grey hair and Fenders
Old ghosts revisited today
No original members

Pick out a pretty one and toss your hair
Seems foolish when you’re older
You always felt you never had your share
A chip on both your shoulders

You’ve been faking it so long
Now you don’t know right from wrong
Or what the future has in store for you
In the terminal of tribute to

Every day you take the bitter pill
The minibus driver says and you are who
You never made it and you never will
In the terminal of tribute to

Where your plans are forever falling through
And your dreams are movies never shot
And you’re someone, a shadow passing through
Nobody ever knew, so nobody forgot

Your bag has fallen from the carousel
They say one day it could come back to you
Exactly when nobody can tell
In the terminal of tribute to

You’ve been faking it so long
Now you don’t know right from wrong
Or what the future has in store for you
In the terminal of tribute to

You’ve been faking it so long
Now you don’t know right from wrong
Or what the future has in store for you
In the terminal of tribute to

 

Heart of Oak

And how he used to thrill the crowd
The ready eye with bat and ball
The village fighter, heavy browed
The Englishman who had it all
A mighty shoulder to the wheel
To join in battle with the best
The iron arm, the will of steel
And heart of oak to mourn the rest

A power harnessed to the game
Once yoked and tempered fades away
The willing arm, the steady aim
The youth and fire that won the day
As twilight shadows dim the field
The ageing fighter stands bereft
With just the will to never yield
And heart of oak to mourn what’s left

 

Time Will End All Sorrow

The campfires have been lit along the river
You wouldn’t know of trouble anywhere
Someone is playing a concertina
Some old familiar air

It takes me back into another lifetime
Before we ever fought in fields of mud
Where lives like autumn leaves are tossed and scattered
And lost in the swirling flood

But how a song can heal a weary heart
And bring you closer to me where I lie
A song can heal a weary heart
Time will end all sorrow by and by

The moon is laying soft upon the water
Smoke comes drifting gently from the hill
They tell us that this war will soon be over
Maybe in another lifetime it will

But how a song can heal a weary heart
And bring you closer to me where I lie
A song can heal a weary heart
Time will end all sorrow by and by

Time will end all sorrow by and by

 

Oklahoma Ponies (traditional melody, lyrics and arrangement by Mark Knopfler)

We’re a badass band
From the kick ass south
Pizza goin’ down the sofa
A rockin’ little band
Got a record out
And buddy it’s a hit all over
We’re a badass band
From the kick ass south
Cornchips in the shagpile
We’re a’ gonna punch
One another in the mouth
They’re giving us a brand new hairstyle

Get on down, turn ‘em all around
Kick ’em in the old cojones
Gotta get on down, turn ‘em all around
We’re the Oklahoma Ponies
Get on down, turn ‘em all around
Kick ’em in the old cojones
Gotta get on down, turn ‘em all around
‘Cos we’re the Oklahoma Ponies

Now the badass boys
They’re a’ gonna wanna fight
Like they do in Oklahoma
They got a killer girl
To dress us right
And buddy do I wanna bone her
We’re a badass band
From the kick ass south
Pizza going down the sofa
A rockin’ little band
With a record out
And buddy it’s a hit all over

Get on down, turn ‘em all around
Kick ’em in the old cojones
Gotta get on down, turn ‘em all around
We’re the Oklahoma Ponies
Get on down, turn ‘em all around
Kick’em in the old cojones
Gotta get on down, turn ‘em all around
‘Cos we’re the Oklahoma Ponies

 

Hot Dog

I'm coming off your cooking
I'm coming off my food
I'm staring down this hot dog
A nd I'm in a fighting mood
Hot dog, its either you or me
Guess the hot dog blues
Got a hold on me

I drink my coffee leaded
'Till I'm good to go
They tell me it ain't good for me
Maybe so
Hot dog, its either you or me
Guess the hot dog blues
Got a hold on me

You want to give me trouble
I'm gonna stick around
Ain't no hot dog
Gonna run me out of town
Hot dog, its either you or me
Guess the hot dog blues
Got a hold on me

 


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