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Walking In Memphis
Marc Cohn Lyrics


Put on my blue suede shoes
And I boarded the plane
Touched down in the land of the Delta Blues
In the middle of the pouring rain
W.C. Handy, won't you look down over me
Yeah, I got a first class ticket
But I'm as blue as a boy can be

Then I'm walking in Memphis
Walking with my feet ten feet off of Beale
Walking in Memphis
But do I really feel the way I feel?

Saw the ghost of Elvis
On Union Avenue
Followed him up to the gates of Graceland
Then I watched him walk right through
Now security they did not see him
They just hovered 'round his tomb
But there's a pretty little thing
Waiting for the King
Down in the Jungle Room

When I was walking in Memphis
I was walking with my feet ten feet off of Beale
Walking in Memphis
But do I really feel the way I feel?

They've got catfish on the table
They've got gospel in the air
And Reverend Green be glad to see you
When you haven't got a prayer
But, boy, you've got a prayer in Memphis

Now Muriel plays piano
Every Friday at the Hollywood
And they brought me down to see her
And they asked me if I would
Do a little number
And I sang with all my might
She said
"Tell me are you a Christian child?"
And I said "Ma'am, I am tonight"

Walking in Memphis
(Walking in Memphis)
Was walking with my feet ten feet off of Beale
Walking in Memphis
(Walking in Memphis)
But do I really feel the way I feel?

Walking in Memphis
(Walking in Memphis)
I was walking with my feet ten feet off of Beale
Walking in Memphis
(Walking in Memphis)
But do I really feel the way I feel?

Put on my blue suede shoes
And I boarded the plane
Touched down in the land of the Delta Blues
In the middle of the pouring rain
Touched down in the land of the Delta Blues
In the middle of the pouring rain

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC
Written by: Marc Cohn

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
To comment on specific lyrics, highlight them
Most interesting comments from YouTube:

Douglas Roth

Cohn has said that "Walking in Memphis" is "100 percent autobiographical". He has described it as a song about "a Jewish gospel-music-lover", and added that "the song is about more than just a place; it's about a kind of spiritual awakening, one of those trips where you're different when you leave. He was inspired to write "Walking in Memphis" by a 1985 visit to the Memphis, Tennessee area. At the time, he was working as a session singer in New York City while pursuing a recording contract. In 2014, he recalled:

One night while listening to all of my demos, I came to the realization that I shouldn't be signed, because I didn't have any great songs yet... I was 28 years old and not in love with my songs. James Taylor had written 'Fire and Rain' when he was 18, and Jackson Browne wrote 'These Days' when he was only 17. I thought: 'I'm already ten years older than these geniuses. It's never going to happen for me.' So it was a pretty desperate time, and I went to Memphis with that struggle at the forefront of my mind.

Cohn made his first excursion to Memphis after reading an interview with James Taylor in which Taylor stated he overcame writer's block by going to a place he had never been. Emulating Taylor, Cohn chose Memphis as his destination. Cohn states that a friend told him that "there were two things in particular that I had to do [in Memphis], things that would forever change me. They later became the centerpieces of 'Walking in Memphis'." Cohn added:

The first thing was go to the Full Gospel Tabernacle Church on a Sunday morning to hear the Reverend Al Green preach ... I [soon] had chills running up and down my spine. The service was so deeply moving that I found myself with sweat running down my face and tears in my eyes, totally enveloped by everything I was seeing and hearing. There was something incredibly powerful about Al Green's voice in that context. Even after three hours of continuous singing, his voice only got stronger and his band only got better. I sat there crying in the church, aware of the irony of how I used to cry in Synagogue in Cleveland as a kid — but because I wanted to get the heck out of there! Al Green's service was one of the great experiences of my life."

The second piece of advice was that Cohn visit the Hollywood Café in Robinsonville, Mississippi (35 miles south of Memphis) to see Muriel Davis Wilkins, a retired schoolteacher who performed at the cafe on Friday nights. Cohn remembered:

When I arrived, Muriel, who ... was in her 60s, was onstage playing a beat-up old upright piano and singing gospel standards ... I felt an immediate connection to her voice, her spirit, her face, and her smile. I was totally transfixed by her music. While many of the patrons were busy eating and not paying close attention to Muriel, I couldn't take my eyes off her. During her breaks, the two of us would talk. Muriel asked me why I was there, and I told her I was a songwriter trying to find inspiration. I also told her a little bit about my childhood — how when I was two and a half years old, my mom had passed away very unexpectedly, and about ten years later, my dad had passed away and I'd been raised by a stepmother. My mother's death was a central event in my life, and I'd been writing a lot about it over the years, both in songs and in journals. I think a part of me felt stuck in time, like I'd never quite been able to work through that loss... By midnight, the Hollywood was still packed, and Muriel asked me to join her onstage. We soon realized that there wasn't a song in the universe that both of us knew in common. A quick thinker, Muriel started feeding me lyrics to gospel songs so that I could catch up in time to sing somewhat in rhythm with her and make up my own version of the melody. Some songs I was vaguely familiar with, and some I didn't know at all. The very last song we sang together that night was 'Amazing Grace'. After we finished and people were applauding, Muriel leaned over and whispered in my ear: 'Child, you can let go now.' It was an incredibly maternal thing for her to say to me. Just like sitting in Reverend Al Green's church, I was again transformed. It was almost as if my mother was whispering in my ear. From the time I left Memphis and went back home to New York City, I knew I had a song in me about my experience there."



Ali Aziz

Put on my blue suede shoes
And I boarded the plane
Touched down in the land of the Delta Blues
In the middle of the pouring rain
W.C. Handy, won't you look down over me
Yeah, I got a first class ticket
But I'm as blue as a boy can be

Then I'm walking in Memphis
Walking with my feet ten feet off of Beale
Walking in Memphis
But do I really feel the way I feel?

Saw the ghost of Elvis
On Union Avenue
Followed him up to the gates of Graceland
Then I watched him walk right through
Now security they did not see him
They just hovered 'round his tomb
But there's a pretty little thing
Waiting for the King
Down in the Jungle Room

When I was walking in Memphis
I was walking with my feet ten feet off of Beale
Walking in Memphis
But do I really feel the way I feel?

They've got catfish on the table
They've got gospel in the air
And Reverend Green be glad to see you
When you haven't got a prayer
But, boy, you've got a prayer in Memphis

Now Muriel plays piano
Every Friday at the Hollywood
And they brought me down to see her
And they asked me if I would
Do a little number
And I sang with all my might
She said
"Tell me are you a Christian child?"
And I said "Ma'am, I am tonight"

Walking in Memphis
(Walking in Memphis)
Was walking with my feet ten feet off of Beale
Walking in Memphis
(Walking in Memphis)
But do I really feel the way I feel?

Walking in Memphis
(Walking in Memphis)
I was walking with my feet ten feet off of Beale
Walking in Memphis
(Walking in Memphis)
But do I really feel the way I feel?

Put on my blue suede shoes
And I boarded the plane
Touched down in the land of the Delta Blues
In the middle of the pouring rain
Touched down in the land of the Delta Blues
In the middle of the pouring rain

Source: LyricFind

Songwriters: Marc Cohn



Black Steel In The Hour of Chaos

"Muriel plays piano, every Friday at the Hollywood
And they brought me down to see her
And they asked me if I would

Do a little number, so I sang with all my might
She said - Tell me are you a Christian child?
And I said - Ma'am I am tonight!"

That gives me goosebumps everytime I hear it! I know exactly what he's saying, and I've been there many times myself.



All comments from YouTube:

Donny Bun

If you are listening to this in 2021, you are a living legend.

Quang Huy Phạm Hoàng

I'm watching The X File season 5 ep 5, and love this song

Beldandy33

Yeeeeeesss

Bruis Craig Bradford

Right back at ya brother.

New temp Phone-Ash

you too!!

John Morrison

This is a timeless classic my go to

271 More Replies...

Danny Dubs

Hey there you random person scrolling through the comments section. Have a great day 👍

1 1

You to friend! Be easy

brian5o

@Tony Bruce I love Scotland, bud. I really hope to visit there one day. I live in the US but fell in love with a beautiful Scotish lady. She lived with me a while and made for me some mince and tatties and introduced me to a few other great Scottish dishes. She had the most Scottish name too which I loved, Mhairi which for those browsing comments not familiar with Scottish Gaelic it’s actually pronounced Vahri, it’s the Scottish version of Mary. In Scottish Gaelic, Mh is pronounced like a V. I fell in love with her but unfortunately she fell out of love with me.

brian5o

You too, bud! 👋

Thank you! You’ve got great taste in music, my friend!

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