Eagle Breeder's Waltz

Lyrics: Robert Hunter
Music: David Nelson

Played for the first time by the David Nelson Band in June 2016. Thanks to Amana for alerting me to this. David Nelson had referred to the lyrics in an interview with Blair Jackson on dead.net in 2009:

So we were planning to go there and hole up and rehearse some new material, and right then � Hunter didn't know anything about it � he happened to be on one of his [writing] rolls and he went up to his cabin on the Russian River and he sent me an email. 'I'm up at the cabin and doing some writing. What do you think of this?' It was the lyrics to something called 'Eagle Breeder�s Waltz.' I read over it and I realized that it was a thing between him and me: 'Let's do the Eagle Breeder's Waltz, like we did in '65/ Revive our spirits with smelling salts and act like we're still alive.' I thought it was pretty cool, so I went to work printing out things and trying to record something. I made it a waltz and tried all these other things, but I couldn't quite get it. Then he starts sending lyrics just about every other day: 'Hey, it�s your turn! How about this one?' The first ones to come in were 'Where I Come From' and 'Ghost Train Blues'."
Lyrics, as best as I can make them out - thanks to Jordan Hegedus for his help:
Four bald eagles on my back fence
The United States of Reason
I bought top hats for them all
'Cause their heads they must be freezing

I'm so poor my back is broke
And both of my feet are flat
All of my knees are busted too
So what do you think of that

Let's do the Eagle Breeder's Waltz
Like we did in sixty-five
Revive our spirits with smelling salts
And act like we're still alive

Four bald eagles on a china plate
Is this what you call cuisine
Yeah well maybe it's not so great
Without a shot of kerosene

You think it's comical, I think not
Show us please what else you got
Might be amusing inside out
All in all, not worth talking about

Let's do the Eagle Breeder's Waltz
Likely bring us to our ditty
Finish in the money, for all our faults
And move to New York City

Ride, ride your stationary horse
Where the death fed roosters crawl
Pursue, pursue the stationary horse
While you wait for your telephone call, call, call

That's how it was since way past when
You can't back up and do it again
But six will get five or a deuce buys ten
It don't mean the same as it will back then

Let's do the Eagle Breeder's Waltz
Under a jubilee moon
Rock 'n' roll under the starry vault
To the tune of a contra bassoon

Let's do the Eagle Breeder's Waltz
Like we did in sixty-five
Revive our spirits with smelling salts
And act like we're still alive
Act like we're still alive
Act like we're still alive
Act like we're still alive


 


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