Got Away Clean

Hats and boots and cowboy suits
And a smile and a quiff to match
And every line had a hook or two
And every tune had a catch

And most of ’em sang their hearts out
And cried sweet bitter tears
At all life’s crazy ups and downs
And all it’s hidden fears

Well, they used them up and spat them out
And milked them for every bean
And plenty went down in a blaze or a haze
But the music got away clean

There was blues down at the crossroads
In the juke joints and dives
And when you’re bruised and beat, at the end of the week
Those rhythms made you come alive

And most of them played till their fingers frayed
And their lives came apart at the seams
And whiskey and trouble left them down in the rubble
Of lost hopes and broken dreams

It was a hard road to ride on
And a harder road to leave
And most of them ran into hard times
But the music, it got away clean

And all the jazz cats, old Slim and Fats
Were tooting and tinkling down town
Cool and hot on the bandstand at night
Just laying those rhythms down

And some smacked out on the mainline
Some rode it out to the edge
Some pushed it right to the limit
Same of them met on the ledge

Some of them smiled and some of them moaned
And everything in between
But all of them laid it on the line
So the music got away clean

All the rockers and all the rollers
High stepping through time and space
Reaching out to an open door
And calling to a higher place

And some span out on the corners
And some came unglued on the bands
But driven by vision and the passion within’em
They strove to surpass and transcend

And so many brought us rhythms and sounds
Like like like of which no man had seen
And we hear their call, we salute them all
Cos the music gets away clean

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