I Can
David Ruffin Lyrics


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Easy, ready, willing, overtime,
Where does it stop, where do you dare me to draw the line.
You've got the body, now you want my soul,
Don't even think about it, say no go.

I, I 'll do anything that you want me to do,
And I'll do almost anything, that you want me too, ooh,
But I can't go for that, (No can do)
No, I can't go for that, (No can do)
Oh, I can't go for that, (No can do)
I can't go for that, can't go for that, can't go for that.

I can't go for being twice as nice,
I can't go for just repeating the same old lines.
Use the body, now you want my soul,
Ooh, forget about it, now say no go.

I, I 'll do anything that you want me to do,
And I'll do almost anything, that you want me too, ooh,
But I can't go for that, (No can do)
No, I can't go for that, (No can do)
Oh, I can't go for that, (No can do)
I can't go for that, can't go for that, can't go for that.

I, I 'll do anything that you want me to do,
And I'll do almost anything, that you want me too, ooh,
But I can't go for that, (No can do)
No, I can't go for that, (No can do)
Oh, I can't go for that, (No can do)
I can't go for that, can't go for that, can't go for that.

I can't go for that, can't go for that (No can do)
I can't go, I can't go, for that, (No can do)
Oh, I can't go for that, (No can do)
Oh, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no can do,




Oh, I can't go for that, yeah, (No can do)
No, no, no, no, no, no

Overall Meaning

The lyrics to "I Can" by David Ruffin convey a sense of resistance and refusal to comply with someone's desires. The singer is being pursued by someone who wants both their body and their soul, but the singer draws the line and says "no go." They are willing to do almost anything but cannot go for that (no can do). The repetition of this phrase emphasizes the singer's firmness in their decision, and the music amplifies this with a strong beat and catchy melody.


The lyrics also include a rejection of being "twice as nice" or repeating the same old lines. The singer wants something more genuine and deep, and will not settle for surface-level flattery or redundancy. Overall, the song conveys a message of self-respect and boundary-setting, urging listeners to stand firm in their own convictions rather than compromising for someone else's desires.


Line by Line Meaning

Easy, ready, willing, overtime,
I am willing to work hard and go the extra mile to satisfy you.


Where does it stop, where do you dare me to draw the line.
I am willing to push myself, but not to the point where it becomes uncomfortable or unsafe.


You've got the body, now you want my soul,
You are using your physical attractiveness as a way to manipulate me into giving you more than I am comfortable with.


Don't even think about it, say no go.
I am putting my foot down and refusing to compromise my values or boundaries for you.


I, I 'll do anything that you want me to do,
I am willing to be cooperative and accommodating to a certain extent.


And I'll do almost anything, that you want me too, ooh,
However, there are certain lines I am not willing to cross, and I will not be manipulated or guilted into doing something I do not want to do.


But I can't go for that, (No can do)
I am firm in my decision and will not compromise my values or boundaries for you.


No, I can't go for that, (No can do)
I am not willing to compromise, regardless of your attempts at manipulation or coercion.


Oh, I can't go for that, (No can do)
I am committed to my values and boundaries and will not be swayed.


I can't go for that, can't go for that, can't go for that.
My decision is final, and I will not be changing my mind.




Lyrics © WARNER CHAPPELL MUSIC INC, BMG Rights Management, Warner Chappell Music, Inc.
Written by: Sara Allen, John Oates, Daryl Hall

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
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Comments from YouTube:

Wayne Skeffington

David Ruffin amazing talent, Van McCoy working with him brought the best out of him, Walk Away From Love, few years earlier, this record arranged by Van McCoy also. Any record these two worked together on produced

Dave Gresty

Hi Skeff.....His 1971 unreleased album 'David' contains some of his best ever work! 🎶🎶

Harry Donaldson

Despite 'The Four Tops' being my fav soul group David somehow took me in another direction and into another dimension I never knew existed.
God bless him and what a duo he makes now in heaven with his brother Jimmy.

jack gregory

DAVID RUFFIN IS SO WONDERFULL "HE CAN STOP THE RAIN". SINCE DAVID RUFFIN IS THE GREATEST SOUL SINGER OF ALL TIME AND THIS IS MY FAVORITE DAVID SONG WHAT DOES THAT SAY.

BISHOP The Poet

Brother Ruffin… Voice like honey being drizzled over sandpaper … Smooth with the roughness…

Linda hines

yes indeed! 💕💗💕

stuart brixton

Loved all the productions by David ruffin ,Van McCoy and Charles kipps.Such a shame it was short lived due to van McCoy's tragic death at such a young age .Still think this was his best time at motown as a solo artist and often wonder what might have been if van McCoy hadn't died so young.Perhaps David ruffins most prolific songs were yet to come.Superb album and even better song.

Linda hines

the rain 🌧️. were the tears! and the pain in his heart! rip Ruff! 😍

Robert Chatman

Great song by the greatest.

Neil Horsman

Absolute class one of the best

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