Ice Cream For Crow

Album: Ice Cream For Crow (1982)
  • songfacts ®
  • Artistfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • The title track of Captain Beefheart's second-to-last album, "Ice Cream for Crow" is typically inscrutable, a word salad of lines like "crow pants the scarecrow" and "hop flop squawk." Good luck trying to figure it out. Beefheart once explained, "I'm just a silly ass. I have no method to my madness."
  • Beefheart and his Magic Band invested a lot in the video for this song, where they perform it the desert. It was supposed to bring the niche band into the living rooms of the masses, but they were quickly deflated when MTV deemed it "too weird" to play.

    Those who saw the video did so either on syndicated music video shows like Night Flight, or on David Letterman's show. When Letterman had Beefheart on, he played the video and asked him what "Ice Cream for Crow" means. Beefheart's reply made no sense, but he said it with a conviction that left you believing it made sense to him. A rough transcription: "Ray gun, jelly beans, rope trick, he's a bad actor. What it has to do is black and white at a raven, vanilla ice cream."

    Regarding the video, he declared, "I don't want my MTV if they don't want my video," referring to MTV's ubiquitous "I want my MTV" slogan.
Please sign in or register to post comments.


Be the first to comment...

Mike Rutherford (Genesis, Mike + The Mechanics)Songwriter Interviews

Mike talks about the "Silent Running" storyline and "Land Of Confusion" in the age of Trump.

Chris Squire of YesSongwriter Interviews

One of the most dynamic bass player/songwriters of his time, Chris is the only member of Yes who has been with the band since they formed in 1968.

Hawksley WorkmanSongwriter Interviews

One of Canada's most popular and eclectic performers, Hawksley tells stories about his oldest songs, his plentiful side projects, and the ways that he keeps his songwriting fresh.

Jon Anderson of YesSongwriter Interviews

From the lake in "Roundabout" to Sister Bluebird in "Starship Trooper," Jon Anderson talks about how nature and spirituality play into his lyrics for Yes.

Rick AstleySongwriter Interviews

Rick Astley on "Never Gonna Give You Up," "Cry For Help," and his remarkable resurgence that gave him another #1 UK album.

Ben Kowalewicz of Billy TalentSongwriter Interviews

The frontman for one of Canada's most well-known punk rock bands talks about his Eddie Vedder encounter, Billy Talent's new album, and the importance of rock and roll.