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The Big Fat Train To Georgia

December 18, 2018

Here’s another one of my favorite posts, reblogged from January 15, 2016.


So by now, most of you know that I have been a songwriter and lyricist for a half a century. I was once hailed as the “rhyme doctor” and I self proclaim to have a damn good musical database inside my head. I can cough up melodies and lyrics from thousands of songs on demand and I can even recite the Ancient Mariner from memory.

Then tell me why that for years I thought the lyrics were “the big fat train to Georgia” instead of “the midnight train to Georgia?” Age? No, actually I made the mistake when I was in my twenties. Ignorance? Doubtful, for as I’ve said this stuff is in my blood.

I have had other run-ins with the gray matter. Maybe I have a brain tumor. No, probably not that either. So what the hell gives? I, above so many other people, ought to know all…

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  1. I’m pretty sure misheard lyrics are a universal phenomenon. I’m trying to come up with one of my bloopers, but drawing a blank at the moment. I’ll get back to you!😁

    Liked by 2 people

  2. And I was sure & sure that among the songs of the Mamas and Papas there was one that said:
    “… we all lived with Michelle’s American Express…”
    Until talking with my son we searched for song (thanks to Google), but could not find it.
    And yet, that’s what I thought I heard for years… California Dreaming …, but no, maybe they changed the lyrics, like in Rigoletto.

    Liked by 2 people

    • That one sounds familiar to me too. Hmm – Maybe it was a little known album cut of theirs like Neil Diamond’s “You’re So Sweet.” Most people do not know Diamond recorded this song. I always liked the lines: “Front teeth missing, that’s good for kissing…”

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Mark Silverman permalink

    Good Lord for years I thought I was the only one that thought she was singing about “That big fat train to Georgia.” I figured it was a song about this woman’s boyfriend leaving her and she was so angry about him leaving she was sort of taking it out on the train by calling it “that big fat train.” Funny thing is I just heard it on the oldie station and for the first time it did sound like she said “midnight train”. Maybe it was a more clear version.

    Liked by 1 person

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