The Devil You Know
Todd Snider Lyrics


Helicopters over the house again
We got the projects two or three blocks from here
They pull the kids over for driving while African
And the ones with the warrants always run in fear

So, I sit here, waiting for the coast to clear
Wishing once again I had a gun around here
Turn on the news and what do I hear
Some kid shot the bank up on Gallatin road
Ran away from the cops while he was trying to reload
He beat them up to Eastland street on feet
Now, he's probably reloaded and running down my street
Better turn the alarm on and lock myself in

Helicopters over the house again

Sometimes, you rise above it
Sometimes, you sneak below
Somewhere in between believing in Heaven
And facing the Devil you know

Poor kid probably never had a chance to give a fuck
Wouldn't know good luck from a debutant
He's gotta find a way to be Steve McNair or young buck
Or it's tough luck looking for a prison to haunt

And you can fuck getting any kind of job you want
Unless you really want to work in a fast food restaurant
And who wants to do that? Do you want to do that?
I wouldn't trade that for my crooked hat

Or my gang or my gun or my waist full of pagers
For a job deep frying shit, for richer teen agers
If that's where it's at and no one's gonna help
How you gonna blame a man for helping himself?
There's a war going on that the poor can't win

Helicopters over the house again

Sometimes, you rise above it
Sometimes, you sneak below
Somewhere in between believing in Heaven
And facing the Devil you know

Black and white cops shining lights in the bushes
Can't see how this kid is gonna get very far
Unless he finds a way to make it back over to Barry street
And he can't do that unless he steals a car

Man, the way things are, they just don't seem right
All the white people talking 'bout the hope and the light
There ain't no hope in Sam Levy just guns and drugs
We ain't building bridges, we're just training thugs

Then I hear a terrifying kick at my back door
And in comes this kid, I say, ?Hey I've seen this kid before?
I see him all the time at that bar on woodland street
Now, he's bleeding in my kitchen, tracking mud off his feet

And he's looking at me like I'll either help him or die
Until he sees in my eyes that I'm on his side
I hand him my keys, I say, you better move fast
There's a J in the ashtray and plenty of gas

He throws me the cash and says I'll be back for this
I say, yeah, well, don't be surprised if there's a little bit of it missing
His gold teeth glistened with a big old grin
He said we'll talk about that when I see you again

He shook my hand, I shook his back
I felt like I was about to have a heart attack
Until he finally drove away, I thought ?Goddamn"

Helicopters over the house again

Sometimes, you rise above it
Sometimes, you sneak below
Somewhere in between believing in Heaven
And facing the devil you know

Facing the devil you know

Lyrics © BMG RIGHTS MANAGEMENT US, LLC
Written by: TODD DANIEL SNIDER

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
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Most interesting comment from YouTube:

nodnarb

Helicopters over the house again
We got the projects two or three blocks from here
They pull the kids over for Driving-While-African
And the ones that with the warrants always run in fear
So I sit here waiting for the coast to clear
Wishing once again I had a gun around here
Turn on the news, and what do I hear?
Some kid shot the bank up on Gallatin Road
Ran away from the cops while he was trying to reload
He beat them up to Eastland Street on feet
Now he's probably reloaded and running down my street
I better turn the alarm on and lock myself in
Helicopters over the house again

[Chorus]
Sometimes you rise above it
Sometimes you gonna sneak below
Somewhere in between believing in heaven
And facing the devil you know

[Verse 2]
Poor kid probably never had a chance to give a fuck
He wouldn't know good luck from a debutante
He's got to find a way to be Steve McNair or Young Buck
Or he's tough luck looking for a prison to haunt
And you can fuck getting any kind of job you want
Unless you really want to work in a fast food restaurant
And who wants to do that? Do you want to do that?
I wouldn't trade that for my crooked hat
Or my gang or my gun or my waist full of pagers
For a job deep-frying shit, for rich teenagers
If that's where it's at and no one's gonna help
How you gonna blame a man for helping himself?
There is a war going on that the poor can't win
Helicopters over the house again

[Chorus]
Sometimes you rise above it
Sometimes you sneak below
Somewhere in between believing in heaven
And facing the devil you know

[Verse 3]
Black and white cops shining lights in the bushes
I can't see how this kid is gonna get very far
Unless he finds a way to make it back over to Barry Street
And he can't do that unless he steals a car
The way things are, they don't seem right
It's all these white people talking 'bout the hope and light
There ain't no hope in Sam Levy, just guns and drugs
We ain't building bridges we're just training thugs
And then I hear this terrifying kick at my back door
In walks this kid, I say "I've seen this kid before"
I see him all the time at that bar on Woodland Street
And now he's bleeding in the kitchen tracking mud off his feet
And he's looking at me like I'll either help him or die
Until he sees in my eyes that I'm on his side
I hand him my keys, I say "You better move fast
"There's a J in the ashtray and plenty of gas"
He throws me his cash, he says "I'll be back for this"
I say "Yeah? Well don't be surprised if there's a little bit of it missing"
His gold teeth glistened with a big old grin
He said "We'll talk about that when I see you again"
He shook my hand, I shook his back
I felt like I was 'bout to have a heart attack
Until he finally drove away I thought "Goddamn
Helicopters over my house again!"

[Chorus]
Sometimes you rise above it
Sometimes you sneak below
Somewhere in between believing in heaven
And facing the devil you know
Facing the devil you know



All comments from YouTube:

lacrymal1

He has to be the most down-to-earth person in the music industry. I love that he tells stories in his songs, about crazy shit he's experienced, and that he still surrounds himself with "lower" class people. Middle and upper class people don't experience life quite the same as poor people. Not having money makes people creative and risk-taking, which means you do crazy shit sometimes. Shit that makes people laugh.

Vaughn Blaylock

I was poor before I had money. Being poor made me creative and risk-taking, which meant that I did crazy shit sometimes. That's how I made money. I'm still creative. I'm still crazy and creative. It didn't go away.

LULE JAN

Coulden´t say better then you did, lacrymal1

Scott Mi

This guy is awesome.  I saw him open up for Jimmy Buffet at least 20 years ago.

secret perdue

I've been a Todd Snider fan for 10ish years. Since I was 11 or so. I've seen him every year without fail, and I know every song by heart. Love you Todd!

Michael Mahan

had a fake i.d. when i was 16 the only time i seen you man, in arkansas. wish you would come back. a mix between prine and kris....with way better jokes

TARAS KOVALIV

This guy is AWESOME!!

dharmasuu

Love that line - "Somewhere between believin' in heaven...and facin' the devil you know!"

Mike Raines

Love it man, the message in the music is on point. If it don't make you want to turn it up, turn it off.
Keep doing what you do todd, I'll listen and turn it up as loud as I can. 🤠✌🎼🎶

Traci Hill

When my mood is low I somehow find my way here to Todd .I can rise above again.

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