[Home]Papa Was A Rodeo

Stephin Merritt is reported as saying that, in his mind, Papa Was a Rodeo is sung by a man to a woman called Mike [source]. Hence the vocal from Shirley Simms at the end of the song — though the choice of name allows for some ambiguity up to this point. Merritt also stated that this is his personal tribute to Lee Hazlewood and Nancy Sinatra. Mike is the name of the character Nancy Sinatra plays in the movie The Wild Angels.[1]

'What are we doing in this dive bar / How can you live in a place like this?'

According to legend, part of the song was written in the [Rainbow Cattle Co bar] in Austin, Texas [source]. It has more than one mirrorball [picture]. However, in the 69 Love Songs booklet, Stephin reports that he wrote the chorus several years before the rest of the song, at the time of [The Charm of the Highway Strip].

Papa Was a Rodeo has been covered by Kelly Hogan and The Pine Valley Cosmonauts on their album Beneath The Country Underdog.


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Last edited 2007-10-5 6:06 pm by Dario (diff)