Almost Lucy

Album: Time Passages (1978)


  • On the face of it, this is a light-hearted acoustic number about a lady performer, perhaps a singer, even a stripper. Although like many Al Stewart songs it has a particularly beautiful melody, it is anything but light-hearted, and anyone who knows a little about the man's history will realise that Lucy isn't quite what she - or rather he - appears to be.

    Al Stewart was born at Glasgow in September 1945; his father having previously died in a plane crash, the babe in arms and widow Stewart went to live with Al's parental grandfather, then shortly relocated to his mother's native England where the young Al was packed off to boarding school, and in days of youthful folly played in a beat group with later BBC DJ Tony Blackburn before moving to the capital to seek fortune and fame.

    Although he had his share of the breaks, including a tenure at Bunjees coffee house and a record deal with CBS, life wasn't always easy for the young troubadour; his first serious love affair ended in disaster, and he experienced all the usual insecurities of the stranger in the big city trying to find his way.

    In January 1970, Melody Maker named his second release Love Chronicles its Folk Album Of The Year, but in spite of his obviously carving out quite a name for himself, it was not until "Year Of The Cat" - the single and even more so the monster album - that he really shot to fame. In the wake of that success, Al relocated to California.
  • The last verse of "Almost Lucy" begins:

    "The last time that I saw her, she had given up the chase
    Moved away to California, got a suntan on her face."

    And as the song appears on his first album after that relocation, the inference is obvious. "Almost Lucy" was also the B Side of the single "Time Passages", which was released on the Arista label.

    Fortunately for music fans, unlike Lucy, Al never did give up the chase, and although he would never repeat the commercial success of Year Of The Cat, in the following three decades and more he produced a considerable body of mostly folk-oriented work which will undoubtedly stand the test of time. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England, for above 2

Comments: 3

  • Alexander from LondonThere is no Lucy. Almost Lucy is an anagram of Al. Read the songfact and the artistfact to see how this is so.
  • Joseph from IndiaAfter listening more, I think my earlier comment needs to be modified.
    "Lucy worked a different club every day
    And though she put her mind to it
    Her heart was never in it...........
    ....Lucy finds the dressing room and the bar
    Hangs her clothes up
    Hopes tonight the contract won't be broken"

    Though she was just a stripper Lucy had ambitions and wanted to really make something of her life. But the deck was stacked against her and she finally gave up hope (the chase)
    "......Moved away to California
    Got a suntan on her face
    She says that life was just another time, another space
    It's over now, she learned a lot....."
    The only way someone get a suntan on just the face is when the rest of the body is covered.
    A nun's habit? It's a new and different life for her, the old one was another life. Logically I feel Lucy joined a convent in California and found peace at last.
    I still keep listening to this beautiful song
  • Joe from Cochin, IndiaYoung girl with lots of ambitions and dreams tries to reach somewhere, but loses the fight to fulfill her dreams. So she moves on, but in a totally different direction.

    "And though she put her mind to it, her heart was never in it
    She stayed around just long enough to get paid
    She won't pass the time with you, she can't stay a minute

    And all these changing faces never bothered her at all
    They just existed like a back-drop or a pattern on the wall"
    These lines tell you that the young Lucy had great ambitions, never had short term relationships or one night stands. She was totally devoted to achieving her dreams.
    But reality finally defeats her and she forgets her dreams.
    Very tragic.
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