SAN TROPEZ

From my album WHEN – the doomy, noir San Tropez with the image I constructed.  Many years ago on my Kombi tour of Europe with Larry and Des we visited San Tropez which was a pretty ordinary beach by Australian standards. Nevertheless the legend lives on and when the melody first came to my head as I walked down by North Steyne in Manly, the words that came with it were “I’m on the beach … in San Tropez wond’ring how I got this way”.  From there the concept of the song progressed  rapidly in my head : it would be the thoughts of a man staggering, close to death, reflecting on his life. Perhaps the narrator was a classic Jean Luc Godard style gangster, perhaps a man who had argued with his mistress or wife but the image of lonely coloured bulbs from a bar catching his pale face as he staggered towards the surf was tangible, and the mood was set in my blood by the time I sat down at the keyboard to confirm the chords.   Martin Cilia and I then structured it and we got Lloyd in to give us the sound of breaking surf with brushes on a snare.   Later Tony Durant contributed a simple, elegant piano line, Martin garnished with a little guitar and voila!

SAN TROPEZ

(Warner)

 

I’m on the beach in San Tropez

Wond’ring how I got this way

My sweat is heavy underarm I have no guile or wiles or charm

I’m stumbling on the beach in San Tropez

I wear a Torme tux stained with a

Hundred cigarettes my life’s one parade of regret

And so I sway

In San Tropez

Fresh faces of the angels I have kissed

Come skipping to me through the mist

Somewhere an actor takes a stage

And so it plays

 

I’m on the beach in San Tropez

Wond’ring how I got this way

Fresh faces of the angels I have kissed

Come skipping to me through the mist

Somewhere an actor takes a stage

And so it plays

But all the lines we ever write mean nothing in the dead of night

Or even on the beach at San Tropez

Blooming on my shirt I see a freshly bud rosette

It’s spreading slowly with each step

And so I sway

In San Tropez

 

I wear a Torme tux stained with a

Hundred cigarettes my life’s one parade of regret

And so I sway

In San Tropez

2 Comments on SAN TROPEZ

  1. a mature adult re-imagining of ‘immigrants lament’
    As the actor looks back on his life remembering the “Fresh faces of the angels I have kissed Come skipping to me through the mist’ his movie life is over & he realizes that “Somewhere an actor takes a stage” to take his place, to carry on the futile tradition “And so it plays” & it plays out, to emptiness.
    The protagonist of this song realizes that “But all the lines we ever write mean nothing in the dead of night” when one is all alone & as the curtain closes/falls on his life he realizes that his life is nothing but full of “Wond’ring how I got this way My sweat is heavy underarm I have no guile or wiles or charm …. my life’s one parade of regret” he notices that
    “Blooming on my shirt I see a freshly bud rosette
    It’s spreading slowly with each step” possibly shot by a disgruntled Husband of the woman he was seducing, what gives that away is the line “I wear a Torme tux” the attire of a roue.

    Tony Durant contributed a simple, elegant piano line, Martin garnished with a little guitar and voila! great song – now for the screenplay with Hugh Jackman as the lead, ‘rusty’ Crowe as the shooter & perhaps Margot Robbie or Emma Stone as the female lead?

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