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Paul Simon — One Man's Ceiling is Another Man's Floor
Album: There Goes Rhymin' Simon
Avg rating:
6.7

Your rating:
Total ratings: 685









Released: 1973
Length: 3:36
Plays (last 30 days): 0
There's been some hard feelings here
About some words that were said
There's been some hard feelings here
And what is more
There's been a bloody purple nose
And some bloody purple clothes
That were messing up the lobby floor
It's just apartment house rules
So all you 'partment fools
Remember: one man's ceiling
Is another man's floor
Remember: one man's ceiling
Is another man's floor

There's been some strange goin's on
And some folks have come and gone
And the elevator man don't work no more
I heard a racket in the hall
And I thought I heard a fall
But I never opened up my door
It's just apartment house sense
It's like apartment rents
Remember: one man's ceiling
Is another man's floor
Remember: one man's ceiling
Is another man's floor

And there's an alley
In the back of my building
Where some people congregate in shame
I was walking with my dog
And the night was black with smog
When I thought I heard somebody
Call my name
Comments (93)add comment
 thewiseking wrote:
Simon lost me on this post Garfunkel derivative schtick

 
Derivative of what, exactly? Simon and Garfunkel? Can one be derivative of one's own work?
 LuvWilloughby wrote:

Is that Leon Russell playing piano and singing back-up?

 
Nice thought, but seemingly it was Barry Beckett on piano.
Clash said it much better:

"I heard the people who lived on the ceiling"
 thewiseking wrote:
Simon lost me on this post Garfunkel derivative schtick

 
No worse than Randy Newman, so hey...what's the prob?
Simon lost me on this post Garfunkel derivative schtick
 best part of the song in my opinion BBoyes wrote:
That piano intro is instantly recognizable. Interesting how with so many tunes out there something can still be so unique.

 


 haresfur wrote:
Well, this is a real dog's breakfast of musical styles. —> 3

 
Our dog has the same thing every day for breakfast, so I'm missing the meaning... unfamiliar with this expression.

Urban Dictionary to the rescue:

 "Dog's breakfast" has been British slang for "a complete mess" since at least the 1930s. While no one took the time to write down the exact origin of the phrase, the allusion involved seems to be to a failed culinary effort, perhaps a burned or botched omelet, fit only for consumption by the mouth of last resort, Fido. As a vivid figure of speech meaning something so fouled up as to be utterly useless, "dog's breakfast" can cover anything from a play plagued by collapsing scenery to a space mission ruined by a mathematical error. "Dog's dinner," which seems to have appeared around the same time, means exactly the same sort of disaster, but has the advantage of being attractively alliterative. Both phrases are heard occasionally in the U.S., but are more common in the U.K. and Commonwealth countries.
That piano intro is instantly recognizable. Interesting how with so many tunes out there something can still be so unique.
 haresfur wrote:
Well, this is a real dog's breakfast of musical styles. —> 3

 
I agree, too much experts a-la Band on The Run. 4.
Well, this is a real dog's breakfast of musical styles. —> 3
 Lazarus wrote:
Everybody in my mushrooming multitude of churches be dancing buck ass naked all across the holy moly world like bowlegged gypsy muleskinners and B.F. Skinner...  love this splendiferous song...  love sex, drugs, and rock 'n roll...
hope life is grand for you right this minute On_The_Beach...
 
Splendiferous, indeed!
 On_The_Beach wrote:

Don't forget, all you crazy dancers, one man's floor is another man's ceiling!  ; )
 
Everybody in my mushrooming multitude of churches be dancing buck ass naked all across the holy moly world like bowlegged gypsy muleskinners and B.F. Skinner...  love this splendiferous song...  love sex, drugs, and rock 'n roll...

hope life is grand for you right this minute On_The_Beach...

 1wolfy wrote:
I love the subtle piano ...I keep wanting to hear Elton's voice though


 
Is that Leon Russell playing piano and singing back-up?

{#Music}   {#Yes}   


There's one piano part which exactly sounds like one of the iPhone ringtones!
Yuk is a laugh, Yuck is unpalatable. This song is both.


 j2e1n9 wrote:
Yuck
  
I believe the correct spelling is "Yuk!"
The first lp I ever bought!
 
I respect the attempt and this band cooks, but Paul in not a blues man....{#Bananapiano}{#Cheers}
 HearsayDave wrote:

Better if it was sung in Swedish.  6
  Swedish is one of those rare languages in which there can be no singing... extraordinary!
A favorite quote of mine
 romeotuma wrote:
Everybody in my hotel room be dancing...  love it...
 
Don't forget, all you crazy dancers, one man's floor is another man's ceiling!  ; )


Everybody in my hotel room be dancing...  love it...

 
Remember this when you stay in a hotel room above me, okay?
 slippery wrote:
Do anybody know if Paul ever payed credit to one of the most famous of swedish poets, Nils Ferlin, for using his words as a lyrical centerpiece in this song?

Excerpt from the well-known Ferlins poem "Infall", 1933:
"...
Då slår det mig plötsligt att taket,
mitt tak, är en annans golv.

Which translates into somehing like this:
"...
Then it suddenly hits me that the roof,
my roof, is another mans floor."
 
Better if it was sung in Swedish.  6
viva la rasa!
Do anybody know if Paul ever payed credit to one of the most famous of swedish poets, Nils Ferlin, for using his words as a lyrical centerpiece in this song?

Excerpt from the well-known Ferlins poem "Infall", 1933:
"...
Då slår det mig plötsligt att taket,
mitt tak, är en annans golv.

Which translates into somehing like this:
"...
Then it suddenly hits me that the roof,
my roof, is another mans floor."

 vandal wrote:
boring
 
Granted, not the best song on the album, but a very good album nonetheless.

 j2e1n9 wrote:
Yuck
 
I believe the correct spelling is "Yuk!"

I wonder if he ever regrets naming the album.
I like the way he stole the piano rif from the Beatles "Hey Bulldog"
Yuck
boring
Stingray wrote:
Music for elevators...
A beautifully written album, recorded in part at Allen Toussaint's Sea Saint studio in New Orleans with a wildly inventive and wide ranging group of contributors. Cover art by Milton Glaser/Pushpin Studios. Firmly established the post S&G Simon as an independent writer and performer.

Going up?


 Stingray wrote:
Music for elevators...

 
Fancy ones {#Dance}
Music for elevators...

Oh, man, working construction at Atlantic Beach NC and sharing a radio with a crew that had equal parts country boys, black dudes, and hippies. But for some reason we all liked this song.
 katjazuu wrote:
One of his very best albums - ever!
 
I think his very best. Underrepresented in the RP library - it would be great if Bill played "An American Tune," at the very least.

".....one man's ceiling is another man's floor...(god damn)....one man's ceiling is another man's floor..."


 Stefen wrote:
It's special when a song lyric becomes part of the common vernacular.
 
Well, okay, but I believe the vernacular predates the lyric substantially.

I wonder if Fats Domino listened to this when he was 'Walking To New Orleans'  ??
One of his very best albums - ever!{#Bananapiano}
Brilliant....
It's special when a song lyric becomes part of the common vernacular.
My fave pre-"World Music" Paul Simon album.
Love the piano outro on this tune.

Thanks, Bill. My old vinyl copy skips. First time I've heard it all the way through in quite some time.
ah...driving around Austin in the 70's; VW bug and a cassette player
 HarrO wrote:
Didn't Dr. John, or maybe Jimmie C Newman, anyway one of those Cajun guys, do a ripping version of this?
 
The only cover I could find was Robben Ford....

The piano work on this song is genius. Actually, the whole song is genius.

Didn't Dr. John, or maybe Jimmie C Newman, anyway one of those Cajun guys, do a ripping version of this?
UGH! the piano reminds me of that blasted vienna teng song!


Love it...


 ThePoose wrote:


Where have you been? Mozambique?
 

Close... but no cigar (or strange looking leaves rolled in newspaper)
this man's ceiling is not. . . luckily. Tis a weak roof over mine hovel.
Ain't that the truth!!!

Good album, too bad his latest doesn't even come close.
One man's sealing is another man's protest march.
Limpopoking wrote:
great... never heard this before. Thanx
Where have you been? Mozambique?
This is awful...do they use this in Guantanamo ?..I'd confess to anything !
paul simon sings the blues! kinda. also has a weird tom waits vibe (before tom waits?). 9.
passsion8 wrote:
I was "house sitting" a 4th floor apartment in NYC in the mid-90's just having broken up from a 10 year relationship that could go no further. I was living out of a packpack and was wallowing in self-pity and doubt. The owner had this huge cache of records & a tape deck, so I set forth creating a mix tape to douse my doldrums. I had never heard this track before. This song ended up in the middle and became the title of the tape. It still brings back memories of the worst/best year of my life.
Great story :-)
I was "house sitting" a 4th floor apartment in NYC in the mid-90's just having broken up from a 10 year relationship that could go no further. I was living out of a packpack and was wallowing in self-pity and doubt. The owner had this huge cache of records & a tape deck, so I set forth creating a mix tape to douse my doldrums. I had never heard this track before. This song ended up in the middle and became the title of the tape. It still brings back memories of the worst/best year of my life.
great... never heard this before. Thanx
Haven't heard this in ages! Thanks RP :good-vibes:
So many diverse changes in this song make me want to hear more of it. Good song. TGIF
It's all in the songwriting, eh?
I've never heard this before! Very nice. More please. :hungry: :hungry: :hungry: :hungry:
First time I've heard from this album on RP, keep it up, Bill! Great stuff on here!! (Would love to hear Kodachrome and Loves Me Like a Rock. And not to forget American Tune.)
WOW. This brings back memories. I was learning guitar and bought the music to this album. Went to see him in concert at Montclair State College in NJ. He was stoned and kept on forgetting the words. I was a naive 12 year old and didn't realize until later that was why. Still a great memory though.
hippiechick wrote:
Flashback alert! I have quoted this song title many, many times.
Quoteworthy indeed!
Flashback alert! I have quoted this song title many, many times.
Dynamite! My music appreciation teacher brought this in and played it for the 7th grade class at Oslo American School waaaayyy back in \'73. This one passes the test of time!
This when a 9 year old found out her Mama and her Uncle Bill really knew how to dance, slow jive. Bought her every Paul Simon release evry Christmas after that!
WonderLizard wrote:
Amazing how young he sounds in this recording.
He was 32 and he's now 66.
That\'s a great album. First listened to it on eight-track. :)
Clif wrote:
This is one of the best songs from my favorite Paul Simon album. I played this album so much on vinyl it is amazing I did not wear it out. This album does not have a bad song on it.
Agree with you.
I always loved this album!!
This is one of the best songs from my favorite Paul Simon album. I played this album so much on vinyl it is amazing I did not wear it out. This album does not have a bad song on it.
:cool:
wally42 wrote:
This album is absolute classic!
Yep. My fave early PS album. "Rythm of the Saints" my fave "recent" PS CD.
For about a year I lived on various couches in Manhattan, taking care of apartments while the owners vacationed. I made tapes of tracks from albums that I found at each place. This worked nicely in the middle of one of my best.
he's never done anything for me except for the sounds of silence era this tune is at least a different sound but for me that piano riff kills the intensity of the rest of the groove - I guess they slipped this tune in when the producer was out getting another coffee
:dance: :roflol: :yes:
I didn't know Paul Simon had it in him!
Ahead of its time...
An absolutely great song from an absolutely great album. Paul Simon at his very best. :bounce:
This album is absolute classic!
Amazing how young he sounds in this recording.
:bounce:
Hey. I like the 'Hey Bulldog' piano riff at the end.
Nice blend of flavors. :music:
What a cool song! Jazz, orchestral, folk, fun!
I don't know anything about the rest of the album, but nope - this cut does nothing for me
Bill, please feel free to play this album into the ground.... :biggrin:
Ecellent album. I wore mine out!