Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Lo and Behold!

Bob goes to Pittsburgh
Which he calls Chicken Town, and
Buys a herd of moose.

"Lo and Behold!" is one of those completely inexplicable songs to emerge from the 1967 Basement Tapes sessions. The music rumbles along like an old car or a train, calling as little attention to itself as possible. As it goes, Bob tells a story that defies description, while the Band joins in for the chorus. This is one of my favorite Dylan songs, but it needs 10 haiku to tell the story well. The first version of this song to appear on an album was in 1975 on "The Basement Tapes." A few more takes surfaced on the 2014 release of the complete Basement Tapes sessions, also known as volume 11 of the Bootleg Series.

I pulled out for San Anton’
I never felt so good
My woman said she’d meet me there
And of course, I knew she would
The coachman, he hit me for my hook
And he asked me my name
I give it to him right away
Then I hung my head in shame
Lo and behold! Lo and behold!
Lookin’ for my lo and behold
Get me outa here, my dear man!

I come into Pittsburgh
At six-thirty flat
I found myself a vacant seat
An’ I put down my hat
“What’s the matter, Molly, dear
What’s the matter with your mound?”
“What’s it to ya, Moby Dick?
This is chicken town!”
Lo and behold! Lo and behold!
Lookin’ for my lo and behold
Get me outa here, my dear man!

I bought my girl
A herd of moose
One she could call her own
Well, she came out the very next day
To see where they had flown
I’m goin’ down to Tennessee
Get me a truck ‘r somethin’
Gonna save my money and rip it up!
Lo and behold! Lo and behold!
Lookin’ for my lo and behold
Get me outa here, my dear man!

Now, I come in on a Ferris wheel
An’ boys, I sure was slick
I come in like a ton of bricks
Laid a few tricks on ’em
Goin’ back to Pittsburgh
Count up to thirty
Round that horn and ride that herd
Gonna thread up!
Lo and behold! Lo and behold!
Lookin’ for my lo and behold
Get me outa here, my dear man!



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