Curtains

Album: Captain Fantastic And The Brown Dirt Cowboy (1975)

Songfacts®:

  • In Susan Black's Elton John in His Own Words, Elton describes this song as "crap," although many fans would disagree.
  • "Curtains" appears to have been partly inspired by lyricist Bernie Taupin's country background - he was born and raised on a farm - but it also contains some obscure allusions including to "Scarecrow," the first song the two ever wrote together, and which was never released commercially. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander - London, England, for above 2

Comments: 11

  • Jj From Long Ago from Oh>coFrom the first play through 45 years ago this has always been my favorite cut on this album. I thought it was beautiful. Of course now because of “John From Way Back In The Day from Liverpool” I now know I have been singing the unwritten lyrics wrong all along! Thanks Internet!! I find a very personal and strange connection between this song and Bob Seger’s “Famous Final Scene” from “Stranger in Town”. The last song on his 1978 Album
  • John From Way Back In The Day from LiverpoolBernie Taupin wrote poetry that flowed out of him and Elton john put a tune to them, On this song it isnt about the band breaking up per se it was more about Bernies personal anguish at splitting up with wife Maxine ( tiny dancer from madman across the water)and the hell he was going through over it. as exemplified by the always misheard and misquoted run out chorus lyrics which are actually if you listen more carefully love me love me baby - love me love me baby sung in Eltons Pinner accent, and anyone calling this piece "crap" has obviously never listened to it properly.....or is simply soul less
  • Tn from IndyI do not agree that this is "CRAP." It is very artistic and poetic, and resonates with listeners in their own interpretation. Sometimes, we just dont see the beauty in our work. The beauty is found in each perspective.
  • Bernardo from NorwayCrap
    Elton must have been high on something really crappy and cheap, when he stated such thing
  • David from EarthCurtains is the conclusion of “We all fall in love..” and the album. It’s the remembrance of relationships and the lamentation of the end of those relationships during the climb of Bernie and Elton’s career. The regret of leaving behind their parochial existent as they rise to world wide stardom. The song is anything but “crap” it is one of the most moving songs the two have ever written. I suspect Elton knows this but is reluctant to admit the intimacy played out in the closing of this autobiographical album.
  • Matthew from Santa FeThis is a touching song in that Bernie is saying good-bye to the farm-life he had living. It is over and he is on the superhighway to stardom, with all the trappings it brings, but with the sadness that comes from knowing a part of one's life is over.
  • Mark from Sylvania, OhI would also like to state that I completely disagree with both Elton and kevin, Reading, PA. If this song is viewed purely on its own merits it would most likely rank in the middle of his entire catalog of songs. But, I am convinced that there are songs written for and included on the finished work that are never meant to be looked at apart from the complete body when composing a proper album. As the concluding number on Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy this track resonates with me. It is languid vamp and unlike any other number that Elton had or has written. The Beatlesque quality to the song is so symbolic in several ways. The Beatles were larger than life when Elton and Bernie were coming of age. The limited reference point for the stories and allegories on this album are the very early days of their songwriting partnership and friendship when they shared the same music publisher as the Beatles though they were struggling and the Beatles were an even stronger force than in there skiffle days. This is the period of time that the Beatles were initially introducing the music that allows me to use the term Beatlesque. Lastly, the kinship between Elton and Bernie and John Lennon was very strong when Captain Fantastic was being recorded and John was unrelated separated from Yoko. I hear Curtains as being both a strong track to directly follow We All Fall in Love Sometimes without a pause as a grand example of Elton's range of musical and storytelling ideas and to close this exceptional collection of songs. I love how in the last line it switches from Bernie's singular voice to the plural expression that includes both he and Elton. "There's a treasure that children always seek to find, and just like us, you must have had a Once Upon A Time."

  • Mark from Sylvania, OhThese lyrics depict images in the past tense. The images in Curtains are all very much from Bernie's life. The album Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy is well documented to be the story of Elton and Bernie's relationship. It is also well known to have been written and even recorded in chronological order. Elton's skill, sensitivity and imagination as a vocalist allowed him to sing the words that Bernie composed with convincing sincerity whether Bernie was conjuring Elton's life, his own life or the life of a completely fictitious character. The combination of voice and words is one of the key components to the brilliance of their relationship. Bernie seemed to consistently write with apprehension regarding pop stardom and a longing to return to his simpler roots. The more famous they became the less Bernie seemed to enjoy the spotlight. Bernie spoke often about his return to Lincolnshire and it is evident to me that the lyrics describe Bernie's past, it is the last song on a chronological album and is written in the past tense. The Kid had returned to the farm.
  • Karl from Toronto , Onthis song is about ending the current line up in his band and also bernie taupin , the album is based on them if you look into the lyrics . they well may have been the next best thing next to lennon / mcartney .
  • Kevin from Reading , PaI agree with Elton. Next.
  • Colin from London, United KingdomThe reason this song works for me is that is the second half of a medley with We All Fall In Love Sometimes, as the track switches from the sadness that being in love can bring to childhodd memories. It's not the first time he did very long tracks which were two songs put together (cf Funeral For A Friend/Love Lies Bleeding). As Alexander said, there are allusions to Elton's younger days on this track, in fact the whole Captain Fantastic album is littered with them.

    Perhaps it's all the "lum-de-lum-de-lays" that Elton dislikes!
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