Cheap White Ballad

from by The Symphony Orchestra

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lyrics

I knew a man with cheap white sneakers
His children loved him very much
And he played his trombone all day long
And we used to meet after my Dutch

He danced in rhythms great or small
And ‘far as anyone could tell
He was as pure as Abraham
A life no man could trade or sell

But then one day the hour came
Some fancy shit did go amiss
The trombone didn’t play that day
The old brown speakers only hissed

And I the faithful promise-keep
Employed by Satan’s better half
I lied until my face spun off
And looked into my soul of black

His brushstrokes long, as he was tall
And permanent is permanent
And my poor soul, awake at dawn
It was the longest day he’d ever spent
Ever

True though it was, the place where he stood
The kids never made it themselves
Those boxes were empty, that money was great
And I promised him I’d never tell


And when they brought the pigs inside
I looked at the plan on her face
It was as pure as the one that I knew
A middle-class blackmail disgrace

She fed me all the classic lines
That painfully familiar taste
It lingered on my tongue until
I fed to her the very same

And I the faithful promise-keep
With only one thing on my mind
I left as quickly as I’d come
And peered into the paradigm

Of people who I used to know
Their sneakers all looked cheap and white
And one tall man behind one door
Said things would improve with time
Not this time

credits

from Not Anymore, released March 15, 2010

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The Symphony Orchestra New York

The Symphony Orchestra consists of a rotating cast of musicians, with the only consistent members being songwriter Skylar Sarkis and producer Jon Markson.

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