Brown Gravy Blues

“I think everybody should have a theme song for their life. I got mine at a K-Mart – the theme song, not my life. I’ve known a lot of people that look like they got their life at a K-Mart. But I wrote this song at a K-Mart in front of an ICEE machine. I was just kinda sittin’ there, half envious, watchin’ these guys with their wives and girlfriends out buyin’ tennis shoes or whatever else fell within the bountiful beam of the blue light. And I thought, ‘You know, that should be my girlfiend. My sneakers.’ But it didn’t work out that way so I wrote a song instead.”

-Introduction from a live performance on 25 Jun 1987


Wish I could be a good boy,
Do the things a good boy should do.
Go to school, get a job, get a wife,
And be faithful and true.
Wish I could be a good boy,
Be a tater in this mulligan stew.
But I was born to be a sad rutabaga,
Just a singin’ these brown gravy blues.

I grew up like an All-American,
Chasin’ girls and playin’ ball.
Prayed to God I could be like my heroes,
Willie Mays and Monte Hall.
And I mowed the lawn for my neighbors,
Raked their leaves up every fall.
But all my wages were spent on Mad Magazine,
That’s at the root of it all.

I wish I could play pretty music,
All about flowers and love and Mom.
How war is bad for your children,
We should never have invented the bomb.
They could play my pretty music at K-Mart,
To the blue light of their intercom.
There’d be a thousand blue haired ladies,
wearin’ polyester and hummin’ my songs.

Wish I could be a good boy,
Do the things a good boy should do.
Go to school, get a job, get a wife,
And be faithful and true.
Wish I could be a good boy,
Be a tater in this mulligan stew.
But I was born to be a sad rutabaga,
Just a singin’ these brown gravy blues.
I was born a sad rutabaga,
Just a singin’ these brown,
Brown gravy blues.
 

“Brown Gravy Blues” appears on Live at the Pres House and The Soul You Save.


© and ℗ 2001, 2012 Marques Bovre