‘(Nothing But) Flowers’ – Talking Heads

2 July 2012

Talking Heads’ last studio album Naked was recorded in Paris, produced by Steve Lillywhite and released in 1988. Johnny Marr played 12-string guitar on ‘(Nothing But) Flowers’ along with Congolese guitarist Yves N’Djock, Abdou M’Boup on congas, Jerry Harrison on organ, Brice Wassy on skaker, David Byrne on vocals and Kirsty MacColl on backup vocals.

‘(Nothing But) Flowers’ – Video from XOtericate

Was being a session man easier for you than being in a group?
No, it was a lot harder actually. Like with Talking Heads – I went to Paris to record with the band and it was very unnerving. First off Chris and Tina put down a great rhythm track. Then Jerry Harrison adds another brilliant bit to it. David Byrne adds something great. Then it’s your turn! And you suddenly realise that you’ve got to come up with something that’s really going to improve this track, and already it sounds brilliant. It really puts you on the spot.

That people like Bryan Ferry or Talking Heads would want me to record with them gave me a real burst of confidence..

Sonics, December 1989

Here we stand like an Adam and an Eve
Waterfalls, The Garden of Eden
Two fools in love so beautiful and strong
The birds in the trees are smiling upon them
From the age of the dinosaurs, cars have run on gasoline
Where, where have they gone?
Now, it’s nothing but flowers

There was a factory, now there are mountains and rivers
You got it, you got it

We caught a rattlesnake, now we got something for dinner
We got it, we got it

There was a shopping mall, now it’s all covered with flowers
You got it, you got it

If this is paradise, I wish I had a lawnmower
You’ve got it, you’ve got it

Years ago, I was an angry young man
I’d pretend that I was a billboard
Standing tall by the side of the road
I fell in love with a beautiful highway,
This used to be real estate, now it’s only fields and trees
Where, where is the town?
Now, it’s nothing but flowers

The highways and cars were sacrified for agriculture
I thought that we’d start over but I guess I was wrong

Once there were parking lots, now it’s a peaceful oasis
You got it, you got it

This was a Pizza Hut, now it’s all covered with daisies
You got it, you got it

I miss the honky tonks, Dairy Queens and 7-Elevens
You got it, you got it

And as things fell apart, nobody paid much attention
You got it, you got it

I dream of cherry pies, candy bars and chocolate chip cookies
You got it, you got it

We used to microwave, now we just eat nuts and berries
You got it, you got it

This was a discount store, now it’s turned into a cornfield
You got it, you got it

Don’t leave me stranded here, I can’t get used to this lifestyle

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