Song of the Week - Lights of Vegas - Feb. 15, 2010

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Song of the Week - Lights of Vegas - Feb. 15, 2010

Postby KarenZ » Mon Feb 15, 2010 10:20 am

Lights of Vegas

The desert’s dry and the wind feels cold
The wheels that you ride do what they’re told
And all the love you left behind
Is just a shadow in your mind
On the horizon
You see the shining
The neon rising

And the lights of Vegas
Will save us, will save us
And the lights of Vegas
Will save us, will save us

When you’re on your last dollar
You still got a chance
Before the sun rises
You get one last dance
Close your eyes
You’re a good luck charm
Feel the weight, pull the arm
Those who leave us, don’t believe us
If they could see us now

(Repeat chorus)

Step out on a wire
Swallow fire
Velvet martyr for your walls
Plastic cameras
Flash around us
Do you have faith
Do you believe it all

(Repeat chorus)

Hi everyone,

I'm curious to hear how you all interpret this song. Mainly how/why the lights of Vegas will save us. From the very first time I heard this song I decided it was the back story of Parker Evans and his bride. You remember Parker Evans, don't you?

"It’s Parker Evans and his bride with Elvis at their side
Married in a chapel in Vegas
And then they hit a bank and shot a man point blank
The camera caught them stealing his Lexus"

I figure the lights of Vegas will save them because if Parker Evans and his bride marry, then she can't testify against him! And Elvis makes a re-appearance as the "velvet martyr for your wall". :-)

Other than that.....I have no idea why the lights of Vegas "will save us". Unless the lyrics are all a metaphor for gambling and/or taking a risk.....and believing the risk will pay off. I can still see Parker Evans uttering those words.....

Definitely a melody that's hard to get out of your head.....and I always have to sing along LOUDLY.......

"Some people are born to make great art and others are born to appreciate it. It is a kind of talent in itself, to be an audience, whether you are the spectator in the gallery or you are listening to the voice of the world's greatest soprano. Not everyone can be the artist. There have to be those who witness the art, who love and appreciate what they have been privileged to see." -- Ann Patchett in Bel Canto.

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Re: Song of the Week - Lights of Vegas - Feb. 15, 2010

Postby Patti » Mon Feb 15, 2010 2:53 pm

Hmmm. interesting Karen... I have heard Ellis say he needed a "geographical song" for this record, he needed to put a place on it..Looking back you can see almost every CD does have a song with a location mentioned in the title; Alaska , Washington DC, New Orleans, Manhattan, Paris, Maine.

I think this song has more to do with the gambling and risk. Maybe it's where the guy in Rose Tattoo went after he got laid off.... not sure.. but I do know my first few listens of the CD I passed over this to get to other songs. It started off so slow I didn't have the patience. But then I found myself humming along to the Na na na's.... And yes I came back to it and liked it a lot.. Love the story he tells about writing it with Kristian Bush, and I happily sing along loudly too...

Just have to add too... I have some family members that go to Vegas several times a year.. At one point there was talk of them retiring out there and the joke was they could become light bulb least they would never be unemployed. That thought always made me chuckle :lol:

I've been to Vegas 2 times.. I never have seen anyone changing the lights but there sure are an awful lot of them there!!
"Embrace what you have in common, celebrate what sets you apart" Ellis Paul

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Re: Song of the Week - Lights of Vegas - Feb. 15, 2010

Postby monicar » Tue Feb 16, 2010 3:00 pm

I lost a week!!!! A father with a kidney stone attack will do that to you!

Anyway, Karen, I love your interpretation!!!!!

I definitely took it as a gambling metaphor ... "when you're on your last dollar, you've still got a chance." And, I can relate to that ... stopping in the store for milk or something and having an extra dollar and buying a scratch ticket and walking to my car, thinking, this could be it!!!! I haven't seen IT yet, but I do get that feeling whenever I scratch a ticket, although I'm not lucky by nature.

My husband threw a surprise 40th b-day for me. Actually told me it was one weekend, but the surprise was it was a different weekend. I work weekends, so unfortunately I had to work the next day. I was up until 3:00 a.m., slept for an hour or so and drove home to work. Due to celebrating to heavily, work wasn't working out so well, so I emailed my boss and told her what was going on and she told me to go to bed, which I did. I brought my scratch tix with me and scratched a $400 winner on a $2 dollar ticket!!!! I slept with a big smile on my face! :D

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Re: Song of the Week - Lights of Vegas - Feb. 15, 2010

Postby Richard + Jela » Wed Feb 17, 2010 12:57 pm

This is one of the Kristian Bush co-writes on the CD and I can imagine it getting the 'Sugarland treatment'. If they were to perform it I can see it becoming a big hit with their fans. It has that 'big song' feel about it that would go down really well in the sizeable arenas Sugarland play.

I can also imagine that it would be well received (as a song) in Las Vegas itself. Can't you just picture some big star, playing a Vegas residency, belting this one out?

To me, the lyrics speak of a man leaving everything behind to go play the tables/slot machines in Vegas hoping for that big win that would enable him to change his life around. Okay so it doesn't happen to many, but it does to a few (a UK couple recently won £56million on the Euro Lottery) but where would we all be without hope?

Monica - loved your lottery story and hope you spent the $400 on something nice.


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Re: Song of the Week - Lights of Vegas - Feb. 15, 2010

Postby paddyinthepub » Thu Feb 18, 2010 9:03 pm

The Lights of Vegas
will save us will save us

On the surface it represents the town

Jesus saves Jesus saves

I think the couple decided to throw caution to the wind and get married. I mean why wait? Let's go to vegas right now and get married. The save us save us in neon brings to mind Jesus Saves signs that might line the highway leading in and out of town. They're Wedding Chapel bound hoping a piece of paper from the city hall will be the remedy for what's ailing the relationship. The Joni Mitchell reference could not be helped.

You're a good luck charm grab the arm
It's the arm of the bride/groom/the slots

Those who leave us, don’t believe us
If they could see us now

A message to respective exes who had left them. The arguments at the end were nasty. Words were exchanged. Words like you will never find love. They spent some time believeing it themselves. Alone in the world thinking they were useless as potential life partners. That they'd never be happy or in love ever again. This is a thinking out loud shout out YET unspoken thought to those exes saying hey, you were wrong about me. Look at me now! I found love. You were the problem. Not me.

Vegas is full of camp and theatre and carnival and circus

The tightrope walkers
The fire breathers
The Velvet Ellis, uh, I mean Elvis, is a tribute to The King.

They look around at tourists from all over the world snapping kodak moments around town oblivious to the newly wed couple. Do you have faith in our love? Do you believe in our love? Ultimately they are asking themselves if this last minute dash to Vegas will save them.

Ellis answers this question with the first na na's he's ever written.
And he write's their fate with a bunch of them.

na na na na na na
na na na na na na
na na na na na na

so many I can't even count em all
in the end....the light of vegas can't save them

the desert's dry and the wind is cold

Pancho and Lefty by Townes Van Zandt comes to mind in the opening line and I sure hope Ellis and Kristian penned it as homage.

The desert's quiet and Cleveland's cold
and so the story ends we're told

Pancho (Parker) needs your prayers it's true....

"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul

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