Way on Down South in London-Town


Jim Adams has set the challenge to write about a song that has the primary directions: North/South/East/West  in the lyrics. “Sultans of Swing” is a song by the band Dire Straits. It was written by Mark Knopfler.  Within the lyrics ther is reference to London being “Way on down south,” which from a Tyneside perspective of the Geordie, Knopfler it is.  The song was originally released in 1978, but re-released in 1979 hitting number 8 in the UK charts and Number 4 in the US.


You get a shiver in the dark,
It’s raining in the park, but meantime:
South of the river, you stop and you hold everything.
A band is blowin’ Dixie, double-four time.
You feel alright when you hear that music play.
You step inside, but you don’t see too many faces.
Comin’ in out of the rain to hear the jazz go down.
Competition in other places…
But the horns, they blowin’ that sound.
Way on down south,
Way on down south, London-town
Check out Guitar George, he knows all the chords.
But it’s strictly rhythm; he doesn’t want to make it cry or sing.
If any old guitar is all he can afford,
When he gets up under the lights to play his thing.
And Harry doesn’t mind if he doesn’t make the scene.
He’s got a daytime job, he’s doing alright.
He can play the honky tonk like anything,
Savin’ it up for Friday night.
With the Sultans,
With the Sultans of Swing
And a crowd of young boys, they’re fooling around in the corner,
Drunk and dressed in their best brown baggies and their platform soles.
The don’t give a damn about any trumpet playing band.
It ain’t what they call rock and roll.
And the Sultans,
Yes the Sultans play Creole.
And then the man, he steps right up to the microphone.
And says at last, just as the time bell rings, ”
Goodnight, now it’s time to go home.”
And he makes it fast, with one more thing:”
We’re the Sultans, ”
We are the Sultans of Swing.”
Source: Musixmatch
Songwriters: Knopfler Mark
Sultans of Swing lyrics © Straitjacket Songs Ltd., Almo Music Corporation

8 thoughts on “Way on Down South in London-Town

  1. The “Guitar George” and “Harry” who are mentioned in the lyrics are George Young and Harry Vanda, who were guitarist in the band The Easybeats. George Young is Angus Young’s older brother, and Harry and George helped get AC/DC recorded. Nice pick Padre.

    Liked by 2 people

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