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Twirling your blue skirts, travelling the sward
Under the towers of your seminary,
Go listen to your teachers old and contrary
Without believing a word.

Tie the white fillets then about your hair
And think no more of what will come to pass
Than bluebirds that go walking on the grass
And chattering on the air.

Practise your beauty, blue girls, before it fail;
And I will cry with my loud lips and publish
Beauty which all our power shall never establish,
It is so frail.

For I could tell you a story which is true;
I know a woman with a terrible tongue,
Blear eyes fallen from blue,
All her perfections tarnished--yet it is not long
Since she was lovelier than any of you.

--John Crowe Ransom

An early track by the British band Pulp, it can be found on their first album It, unfortunately sandwiched between the completely forgettable "Boats and Trains" and the saccharin jauntiness of "Love Love". Although lead singer and songwriter Jarvis Cocker excuses much of the content of It by saying he was still a virgin when he wrote the lyrics for the album, "Blue Girls" stands alone as a blatant hint of the creepy brilliance yet to come.

The song features graphic lyrics with some pretty sinister imagery, typically luscious vocals, set to a hauntingly beautiful backing track. "Blue Girls", although completely different from the disco pop that made Pulp a household name, is without a doubt the standout track on the album, although most Pulp fans tend to either love it or hate it.

The blue girls that bake in the sun
Skin falls in flakes from each one
Like leaves from autumn trees
They float upon the breeze

These girls you have loved
Are slowly decaying, ah
Drying out in the sun
Before your eyes
Wild stares in your face
They seem to accuse you
Oh, what have you done
To earn their surprise?


"Blue Girls" was recorded at Victoria Studios in Sheffield, in December of 1982. It was produced by Simon Hinkler, and was later remixed in January of 1983. As an interesting sidenote, Jarvis's sister actually does the beautiful backing vocals. The song can be found on various editions of the album It, as well as the compilation albums entitled Countdown 92-83 and On Fire.

Jarvis Cocker: vocals, guitar
Simon Hinkler: bass, piano
Peter Boam: acoustic guitar
David Hinkler: keyboards
Garry Wilson: drums
Barry Thompson: flute, clarinet
Saskia Cocker, Jill Taylor: backing vocals
"Joanne, Julie and Alison": conversation


sources: http://www.pulp.gb.com/bar-bluegirls.html

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