Sugar Mice

[Track Info] [The Lyrics] [Explanation]

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Sugar Mice - Track Info

  1. Album version (05:47) [Clutching At Straws (1987)]
  2. Radio Edit (05:00) [SCD Sugar Mice (1987)]
  3. Extended version (06:08) [12", SCD Sugar Mice (1987)]
  4. Live (St. Goar, Germany - "Freilichtbuhne Loreley", July 18th '87) (05:49) [Live At Loreley (1987)]
  5. Live (Edinburgh, Scotland, - "The Playhouse", December 17/18/19th '87) (06:03) [The Thieving Magpie - La Gazza Ladra (1988)]

    Notes: In comparison with the album version, 2) has a halved guitar intro, and an edited instumental part after the first verse and the last instrumental part before the last strophe is also edited. 3) has a halved guitar intro, a long extra instrumental part between the first and the second strophe instead of the refrain "But when it comes right down...". The live versions follow the studio album version. Fish introduces 4) saying: "This song was originally inspired by a dream in the Holyday Inn in Milwakee. This song is dedicated to all the unemployed people in Europe today, to the romantics, to the dreamers".

    Lyrics by Derek William Dick (Fish)
    Performed Live for the first Time: June 22nd 1987

    Published by Marillion Music, Charisma Music Publishing Co. Ltd.

Sugar Mice - The Lyrics

I was flicking through the channels on the TV
on a Sunday in Milwaukee in the rain
trying to piece together conversations,
trying to find out where to lay the blame

But when it comes right down to it there's no use trying to pretend
For when it gets right down to it there's no one here that's left to blame,
Blame it on me, you can blame it on me
we're just sugar mice in the rain

I heard Sinatra calling me through the floorboards
where you pay a quarter for a partnership in rhyme
to the jukebox crying in the corner
while the waitress is counting out the time

For when it comes right down to it there's no use trying to pretend
For when it gets right down to it there's no one really left to blame,
blame it on me, you can blame it on me, we're just sugar mice in the rain

'Cause I know what I feel, know what I want I know what I am
daddy took a raincheck
Cos I know what I want, know what I feel I know what I need
daddy took a raincheck, your daddy took a raincheck
Ain't no one in here that's left to blame but me,
blame it on me, blame it on me

Well the toughest thing that I ever did was talk to the kids on the phone,
when I heard them asking questions I knew that you were all alone,
Can't you understand that the government left me out of work,
I just couldn't stand the looks on their faces saying, "What a jerk"

So if you want my address it's number one at the end of the bar
where I sit with the broken angels clutching at straws and nursing our scars,
blame it on me, blame it on me, sugar mice in the rain,
your daddy took a raincheck, your daddy took a raincheck

(Holiday Inn, Milwaukee)



EXPLANATION OF SONG ELEMENTS
Copyright 1997 Fraser Marshall, Matthew Anderson & Bert ter Steege.


Sugar Mice

Sugar Mice

Debbie Voller: SUGAR MICE (Holiday Inn, Milwaukee) Fish: I was laying in bed in the Holiday Inn and looking up at the ceiling at some hearts 'n' stuff that some lovers had carved, and I was feeling really down. So I rang my old lady but it was a bad phone call; lots of long silences. I felt even more depressed. Torch has run away from everything and everybody and gone in search of a dream that doesn't exist!

'Sinatra'
Steve Ross: Frank Sinatra (b. 12/12/1915, Hoboken, New Jersey, USA) - known for his smooth voice and unique lyrical style, he is one of the original "crooners'. Sinatra has had numerous chart hits spanning the 1940's through to the 80's and probably every jukebox in 1950's America would have had at least one Sinatra song in it. His most famous song is "My Way"

'Sugar Mice'
Sugar Mice Single Cover
As seen on the cover, these are small coloured mice made from sugar, with a string tail.

'Raincheck'
The original term was 'rain cheque'.

Jeroen Schipper's FAQ: A raincheck is something that is given out:

- At events when it rains, like a baseball game. Usually it means the game is being cancelled at the current time, and the raincheck will allow you into the rescheduled game.

- When you go to buy something at a store and it is on sale. If something is supposed to be on sale, but it's sold out, they can give you a raincheck to pick the item up later at the sale price.

- When talking about social occasions, as in "Would you like to come over for a drink?" "No thanks, I'll take a raincheck" meaning either a) Can't do it right now, how about later. or b) a polite way of saying bugger off.

Fish's use of the term "raincheck" goes even further. "Your daddy took a raincheck", implies that "daddy" has no intentions of fulfilling his duties and living up to his responsibilities (as a father?) at this time. (And perhaps never will in the future either...) This is a key point. Daddy is bowing out to his real or perceived pressures and leaving without any excuses or other reasons. He just can't cope with his responsibilities, so he takes a raincheck. So mom is left to raise the kids on her own, and left to explain to the kids why dad left. Dad at this point, has lots of problems of his own, and is a victim of society. He lost his job and spends all of his time at the bar ("I'm number one at the end of the bar")... He took a raincheck... Quite the powerful imagery, really...

'Clutching at Straws'
Brewers: A forlorne hope; 'A drowning man will catch at a straw'


Sources:


Last Modified: 27 Jul 2000