Top Ten John Prine Songs: Bruised Orange (#3)

@FourWalls (14114)
United States
May 21, 2016 10:48pm CST
When you get into the top three on any countdown it's the "heavy hitters," and to me this one of John Prine's heaviest hitters. This is from my favorite Prine album, and a song that knocked me out the first time I heard it. #3: Bruised Orange (Chain of Sorrow) "It ain't such a long drop, don't stammer, don't stutter From the diamonds on the sidewalk to the dirt in the gutter" See y'all tomorrow! Well, it's hard to write an explanation of a song after a line like that. This song combines two events from Prine's teenage years. One was being in love with a girl ("I sat on the park bench, kissed the girl with the black hair, and my head shouted down to my heart, 'You'd better look out below!'"). The second and more solemn event was the morning a 14-year-old Prine heard sirens approaching as he was on his way to his job as custodian at a local church ("a long-ago Sunday when I walked through the alley on a cold winter's morning to a church house just to shovel some snow") and discovered that "an alter boy's been hit by a local commuter just from walking with his back turned to the train that was coming so slow." At the end Jim Rothermil's saxophone (that sounds like David Sanborn ripped it off at the end of the Eagles' "The Sad Cafe") just reiterates the pain in the lyrics. The song offers good advice ("it don't do no good to get angry, so help me, I know, for a heart stained in anger grows weak and grows bitter, you become your own prisoner as you watch yourself sit there") -- but it's advice that none of us can seem to take. Most of the songs on Bruised Orange are implicitly or explicitly about Prine's first divorce. As it was his first divorce (I think he's been married three times), it really tore him up. His buddy, Steve Goodman, produced the album and told him that he needed to include razor blades in the album jacket so people could slit their wrists thanks to the down nature of many of the songs. It's not that depressing, but this song will hit you between the eyes with both barrels. Bruised Orange (Chain of Sorrow) Written by John Prine From Bruised Orange, 1978 The marvelous "Bruised Orange":
Lyrics to the John Prine song "Bruised Orange/Chain of Sorrow" please watch, comment, like and/or favorite.
2 people like this
2 responses
@JohnRoberts (59673)
• Los Angeles, California
22 May 16
It's a sad somber song to me. Yeah, we never learn when it comes to love and emotion.
1 person likes this
@teamfreak16 (41175)
• Colorado Springs, Colorado
22 May 16
I do like that saxophone at the end. Good tune.