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Elvis Costello — Red Cotton
Album: Secret, Profane and Sugarcane
Avg rating:
4.9

Your rating:
Total ratings: 71









Released: 2009
Length: 5:35
Plays (last 30 days): 0
I'm cutting up her pure white dress
That I dyed red
That I dyed red
I'm putting scraps in cheap tin lockets
What time erases and memory mocks
I'll send them over the ocean foam
Right into those gentle European homes

The slave ship "Blessing" slipped from Liverpool
Over the waves the Royal Navy rules
To go and plunder the Kingdom of Benin
Where certain history ends and shame begins
Dahomey traders paid in powder and shot
Line up their prisoners and they sell them in lots
They packed them tight inside those coffin ships
And took them to the brand new world of
auction blocks and whips

I'm cutting up her pure white dress
That I dyed red
That I dyed red
I'm putting scraps in cheap tin lockets
What time erases and memory mocks
I'll send them over the ocean foam
Right into those gentle European homes

White is the sheet on your fine linen bed
The blood stained red on each cotton thread
Merchants will gather at St. George's Hall
To unveil the kneeling slave who is carved upon the wall
So picture the scene on the Old Salt House docks
Where they loaded the iron shackles and locks
Between a sandstone crocodile, a barrel and a bale
You will see the nameless faces they were offering for sale

So, I sing the praises of God's glory
As a blue cetacean floats in the basement
An elephant on the second storey
They queue all day to see him
In my American Museum

But the Lord will judge us with fire and thunder
As man continues in all his blunders
It's only money
It's only numbers
Maybe it is time to put aside these fictitious wonders

But man is feeble
Man is puny
And if it should divide the Union
There is no man that should own another
When he can't even recognise his sister and his brother
Comments (16)add comment
Wow, what a wide spread of ratings.  I guess that EC grows on you ... one way or the other.  For some a carbuncle on your coccyx or  a patch of hair on your earlobe.

Anyway, there IS poetry here but I think I would have rather heard the Chieftains do it.


tbone's ego is cutting a wide swath of who gives a crap
{#Cowboy}

Elvis Costello and T Bone Burnette; sounds like a great combination. Maybe if they had taken more than 3 days to record the album, it's status would have been elevated to splendid rather than simply good, IMHO.

 fredriley wrote:
Is this from our Declan's C&W phase of some years back? Not one of his finest musical periods IMO. 3 from the Nottingham jury, 2 based on respect for all his other innovative work.
 

Nope, it's from his latest album!

Is this from our Declan's C&W phase of some years back? Not one of his finest musical periods IMO. 3 from the Nottingham jury, 2 based on respect for all his other innovative work.
{#Snooty}
it's melodic, but I get what you mean, not the best song on the album though. I like Complicated Shadows better.  little heavy on the t-Bone for me, but they are a good couple.

Yuck, I should have stayed in bed.

The structure of this song bugs me.  It always seems like it's about to end and them he picks it up again.
Good song. But something this heavy can't be listened to every day without losing its impact. 
It's right good.
Good Stuff Elvis!

 Bazooka wrote:
T. Bone
 

Funny, my first thought was that this was T.Bone, had to check, by the time I saw who it was, the voice was clearer. But yea, first thought, T.Bone??
Heading to Amazon....
Not bad, but Elvis did this rootsy sound better on "King of America" IMHO.
T. Bone