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This song appears on the album 'Chalk Mark In A Rainstorm'

This song appears on the album 'Complete Geffen Recordings'

This song appears on the album 'Dreamland'

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Dancin' Clown

by Joni Mitchell   Printer-friendly version of this lyric

No you couldn't call Jesse a babe in the woods
He's just weak in self-defense
'Cause he's so thin skinned
He can't take a joke at his expense
"You're a push down window" says Rowdy Yates *
"I can run you up and down
Anytime I want
I can make you my dancin'
My dancin' clown!"
You're my dancin' clown
Dancin' dancin'
My dancin' clown
Dancin'
You're my dancin' clown
Dancin' dancin' dancin'
My dancin' clown

Rowdy Yates is as bold as Jove
He's all chide and snide and bluff
Stuck in the romantic tradition
Of acting rough and tough
"You're always charging thru" says Jesse
Nervous lookin' all around
To see who's seein' him bein' a dancin'
A dancin' clown
He's a dancin' clown
Dancin' dancin'
A dancin' clown
Dancin'
He's a dancin' clown
Dancin' dancin' dancin'
A dancin' clown

Cherchez la femme
Whenever love comes around
Someone's a dancin' clown
Cherchez la femme
Whenever hearts start to pound
Someone's a dancin' clown

Down the street comes last word Suzie
She's high yellow lookin' top nice
You hear the swoosh of jungle blades
And the crackle of northern ice
"Hot damn!" says Rowdy lookin' up
"Yum!" says Jesse lookin' down
"How would you like to be her dancin'
Her dancin' clown?"
Be her dancin' clown
Dancin' dancin'
Her dancin' clown
Dancin'
Be her dancin' clown
Dancin' dancin' dancin'
Her dancin' clown

Cherchez la femme
Whenever love comes to town
Someone's a dancin' clown
Cherchez la femme
Wherever hearts start to pound
Someone's a dancin' clown


© 1988; Crazy Crow Music

Additional information:

*Footnotes

Rowdy Yates: [The following was submitted by Mimi Gal] I found my self sitting in some shade and tall grass smoking cigarettes and talking to Joni at the Edmonton Folk Festival a few years back...(it was in August before the release of Turbulent Indigo). Being the biggest Rawhide fan on the planet, I felt I had to ask her about the Rowdy Yates reference in the song, Dancing Clown, off the Chalk Mark album, you know, the one Billy Idol sings on. I was wondering why she didn't get Clint himself to sing it...Mr. Eastwood, who played ramrod Rowdy Yates, would have been a jazz pianist, if acting hadn't proved so lucrative... What a cool duet, Clint and Joni!

LOL --- Joni laughed that great musical chortle of hers, and told me that she had no idea it was a Rawhide reference, but that Rowdy Yates was a racehorse right off her program from the Santa Anita track, and that the names from that song, were all racehorses. I just love a good anecdotal explanation straight from the source!

She and I then watched Don Freed's set, where my girlfriend Rebecca Jenkins sang beautiful back up vocals. Over the course of the weekend, she spun many stories, and is a most memsmerizing raconteur, but after she answered one of the biggest haunting questions for me personally, I felt like the secret of the universe might be revealed next... *grin 

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Comments on Dancin' Clown

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bozito on 2011-Sep-21 at 13:37:59 GMT-5:
I hereby apologize for any offensive remarks; they were probably delusional, jealous and stemmed from my insecurities.
xhohx