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Snow, cement and ivory young towers
Someone called us Babylon
Those hungry hunters
Tracking down the hours
But where were all your shoulders when we cried
Were the darlings on the sideline
Dreaming up such cherished lies
To whisper in your ear before you die

It's party time for the guys in the tower of Babel
Sodom meet Gomorrah, Cain meet Abel
Have a ball y'all
See the letches crawl
With the call girls under the table
Watch them dig their graves
`Cause Jesus don't save the guys
In the tower of Babel

Watch them dig their graves
`Cause Jesus don't save the guys
In the tower of Babel, no no no

Junk, angel, this closet's always stacked
The dealers in the basement
Filling your prescription
For a brand new heart attack

But where were all your shoulders when we cried
Were the doctors in attendance
Saying how they felt so sick inside
Or was it just the scalpel blade that lied



Lyrics taken from http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/e/elton_john/tower_of_babel_lyrics.html

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  • U
    UnregisteredMay 15, 2014 at 11:58 pm
    I've been wondering what this song means since I was about five years old. It has many Biblical references, obviously. From what I remember from Sunday School, workers were making a tower that upset God (I think they were intending to reach God or Heaven with the Tower of Babel). God stuck the tower down and made it so that they no longer all spoke the same language. They had dared to challenge God, and received his wrath. Perhaps it also was meant as an explanation of how so many different groups of people around the world speak different languages.
    What any of this means in the song kind of baffles me. Almost as if it were two different songs meshed into one.
    The chorus mentions famous Bible people, partying together. It seems that this party time is really a test of Good and Evil.
    The last part is (I assume) about his band, or friends. He sees them doing drugs (dealer in the basement, and the sick inside lines I'm guessing are about heroin or maybe "angel dust" which is PCP?).
    I think the lyricist was concerned or angry about his friends getting pulled into a bad scene. At that time drugs and musicians went hand in hand (well they often still do).
    Okay, that is my pretty poor explanation. I really would be interested in seeing other people's takes on this song.
    It's a really cool song from one of my favorite albums, "Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy." It's an album that seems to have been mostly forgotten except for, "Someone Saved My Life Tonight." Wait, I think, "Philadelphia Freedom" may be on it too, another awesome song.
    This was the first record album I ever owned. My Mom bought it for me in the local grocery store!! And I played it over and over. I loved every song. And these songs bring back great memories. I really love a song on there called, "Writing." And perhaps the best thing of all is the cover art for the record. It's marvelously trippy.

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