To Beat The Devil (Kris Kristofferson)
It was wintertime in Nashville down on Music-City-Road
And I was lookin' for a place to get myself out of the cold
To warm the frozen feelin' that was eatin' up my soul
And keep the chilly wind off my guitar.
My thirst he wanted whiskey, my hunger needed beans
But it's been a month of payday since I had that eagle scream
So with stomach full of empty and a pocket full of dreams
I left my pride and stepped inside a bar.
Actually I'd guess you'd call it a tavern
Cigarette smoke to the ceiling and sawdust on the floor
I saw there was just one old man sittin' at bar
And in the mirror I can see him checkin' me and my guitar
He turned and said: Come up here, boy, and show us what you are
I said: I'm dry, he bought me a beer.
He nodded at my guitar and said: It's a tough life, ain't it?
I just looked at him, he said: You ain't makin' any money, are you? I said: He'd been readin' my mail.
He just smiled and said: Let me see that guitar, I got a song you oughta hear,
then he laid it on me:
If you waiste your time a-talkin' To the people who don't listen to
The things that you are sayin' Who do you think's gonna hear?
And if you should die explainin' how The things that they complain about
Or things they could be changin' Who do you think's gonne care?
There were other lonely singers in a world turned def and blind
Who were cruzified for what they tried to show
And their voices have been scattered by the swollen winds of time
Cos a truth remains that no one wants to know
Well, the old man was a stranger, but I heard his song before
Back when failure had locked me down at the wrong side of the door
When no one stood behind me but my shadow on the floor
And lonesome was more than a state of mind.
You know, the devil haunts a hungry man
If you don't want to join him, you gotta beat him
I ain't sayin' that I beat the devil, but I drank his beer for nothing
Then I stole this song:
And you still can hear me singin' to the people who don't listen to
The things that I am sayin' prayin' someone's gonna hear
And I guess I'll die explainin' how the things that they complain about
Or things they could be changin' hopin' someone's gonna care
I was born a lonely singer and I'm bound to die the same
But I've gotta feed the hunger in my soul
And if I never held a nickel I won't ever die ashamed
`cos I don't believe that no one wants to know.