• The Hesh

Lyric of the Week: DEAD MAN’S TOWN


There’s nothing new around in this dead man’s town

Nothing to do in a dead man’s world

Maybe I’ll take a chance on another midnight romance

Involving cars and a girl

Hot summer nights turn into broken dreams

When the rain comes down

Well, let the rain wash away the sadness

That has fallen on this town

There’s a friend of mine who spends his time cryin’

That he’s lived all his life in a cage

He turns the air blue with his anger

The moment he hits the stage

He writes songs about the mean life

What it’s like to suffer for just being born

You can find him playing his trumpet

Under the Pulaski Skyway just before dawn

I’m sick and tired of playing this same old scene

It feels like a story out of some cheap magazine

Like a cardboard hero right out of the old A-Team

The guys are looking real street-corner cool

But they’re just kids with too much time and nothing to do

Once the plug has been pulled on the American Dream

I used to love to come get you with my engine screaming down your block

And then burning rubber in the street

It used to be the only way to break the lethargy

Brought on by the crazy summer heat

As the sun would go down we’d go into town

And maybe then drive to the sea

And all my troubles would seem so far away

When you’d be with me

I was gone for twelve years and when I came back

All my fears became as real as night and day

The folks I loved for so long have all broken up

And gone their own separate ways

We held on for what seems like so long

And now I need you more than ever

‘Cause we’re slipping away

But at least we’ll be slipping together

Well I’m not the kind of person that gets off on being sad

But a poor excuse for an existence makes me so mad

‘Cause it gets even the best of the good men down

I try to light the fire but I still can’t find the spark

And there’s nothing left for me to do but sit alone in the dark

There’s never anything new in a dead man’s town

©2018 The Hesh Inc.

The hell years.

These lyrics date back to the time I was still serving in the IDF and wishing I was at the Jersey Shore, in the second half of the 1980s. The scene is entirely imagined in my mind's eye, perhaps influenced by the slower tracks from Born In The USA. I pictured a scenario in which I was trying to win back the affections of my childhood crush, whose domestic situation seemed to have gone to hell along with the town she lived near. Never did I imagine that just a short year or so later I'd actually be back in that town, and I'd see that it really had gone to hell in the interim (see "Knocked Out in the First Round"). So the lyrics did prove prescient, if not prophetic.

When I was laying plans for the expanded version of my Soul In Exile magnum opus, I put this song in the track list, thinking it would enhance the story being told. But in the end, I decided to scale it back and so this song remains an outtake. Perhaps if and when I get around to recording my album of "Bossisms"—songs blatantly/brazenly showing off the Springsteen influence—I'll include this there.

#SoulInExile #outtakes #originallyrics #AsburyPark #AsburyCasino

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