Monday, August 17, 2015

Seeing the Real You at Last

Bob has had enough.
A little trouble is fine
But you were too much.

If there's one thing we know about the time that Bob Dylan recorded "Empire Burlesque," his contribution to listeners in 1985, he seems to have spent plenty of it watching movies. "Seeing the Real You at Last," which is the second song on the album, is made up of a whole bunch of movie lines. The trouble is, I don't remember which films they are. I'm pretty sure Humphrey Bogart figures in here somewhere. As for the song, I suppose that it could be about a woman, but it could just as easily be about God and religion. This album was his second since the end of his three-album born-again streak, and in some songs from the time, I hear what sounds like a more skeptical, disappointed attitude toward God and the promise of salvation:

1. The rain didn't cool things down. You haven't changed your mind, and you probably won't.
2. I'm keeping myself busy, and I'm glad that this whole affair is over and I'm seeing the real you at last.
3. I risked everything for you and rised above some unfortunate circumstances too.
4. I went through long and sleepless nights for you, but only now am I seeing who you really are.
5. Hungry/irritable. It used to be that anything that was wrong with me was something that you could fix.
6. I strapped myself to the mast and sailed through a storm for you, just like Ulysses.
7. You used to seem flawless, and you could ride like Annie Oakley and shoot like Belle Starr.
8. A little trouble is to be expected, but I'm past all that now that II'm seeing the real you.
9. I know I have troubles, but I think you have troubles too.
10. "Whatever you gonna do, please do it fast, I'm still trying to get used to seeing the real you at last."

Nice performance from Farm Aid, 1986:




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