Song Lyric Sunday: Boys – ‘Boys Keep Swinging’

When I saw that Helen had set the theme of ‘Boys’ for this week’s instalment of ‘Song Lyric Sunday’, I had the unusual experience of simultaneously having two potential candidates immediately come to mind. As such, it was only ever going to be Thin Lizzy’s ‘The Boys Are Back In Town’ or this by David Bowie.

Being of a sensitive disposition, I decided that Phil Lynott was perhaps just a little too ‘laddish’ for these times, whereas Bowie’s lyrics – in my view at least – more subtly convey the uncertainty that underlies the usual swagger of a teenage boy (well most of them anyway). The accompanying video, incidentally, is widely held to be one of the seminal examples of the genre, predating MTV by a full two years.

(may I also crave your indulgence and give a ruthless plug to my participation in the 30-Day Song Challenge that’s doing the rounds currently?)

Heaven loves ya
The clouds part for ya
Nothing stands in your way
When you’re a boy

Clothes always fit ya
Life is a pop of the cherry
When you’re a boy

When you’re a boy
You can wear a uniform
When you’re a boy
Other boys check you out
You get a girl
These are your favourite things
When you’re a boy

Boys keep swinging
Boys always work it out

Uncage the colours
Unfurl the flag
Luck just kissed you hello
When you’re a boy

They’ll never clone ya
You’re always first on the line
When you’re a boy

When you’re a boy
You can buy a home of your own
When you’re a boy
Learn to drive and everything
You’ll get your share
When you’re a boy

Written by David Bowie and Brian Eno

Song Lyric Sunday 9 December 2018

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