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Elvis Costello Songs - (The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoes Lyrics

(The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoes Lyrics By Elvis Costello Songs Album: My Aim Is True Year: 1977 Oh, I used to be disgusted And now I try to be amused

Elvis Costello - (The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoe
Elvis Costello - (The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoes


Elvis Costello - (The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoes Youtube Music Videos and Lyrics

Album: My Aim Is True
Released: 1977

(The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoes Lyrics


Oh, I used to be disgusted
And now I try to be amused
But since their wings have got rusted
You know, the angels want to wear my red shoes
But when they told me 'bout their side of the bargain
That's when I knew that I could not refuse
And I won't get any older, now that angels want to wear my red shoes

Oh, oh, I was watching while you're dancing away
Our love got fractured in the echo and sway
How come everybody wants to be your friend?
You know that it still hurts me just to say it

Oh, I know that she's disgusted (oh, why's that?)
Because she's feeling so abused (oh, that's too bad)
She gets tired of the lust (oh, I'm so sad)
But it's so hard to refuse
Can you say that I'm too old
When the angels have stolen my red shoes?

Oh, oh I said, "I'm so happy I could die"
She said, "Drop dead," then left with another guy
That's what you get if you go chasing after vengeance
Ever since you got me punctured, this has been my sentence

Oh, I used to be disgusted
But now I try to be amused
But since their wings have got rusted
You know, the angels want to wear my red shoes
But when they told me 'bout their side of the bargain
That's when I knew that I could not refuse
And I won't get any older, now that the angels want to wear my red shoes

Oh, I won't get any older, now the angels want to wear my red shoes
Red shoes, the angels want to wear my red shoes
Red shoes, the angels want to wear my red shoes
Red shoes, the angels want to wear my red shoes
Red shoes, the angels want to wear my red shoes
Red shoes, the angels want to wear my red shoes
Red shoes, the angels want to wear my red shoes
Red shoes, the angels want to wear my red shoes
Red shoes, the angels want to wear my red shoes
Red shoes, the angels want to wear my red shoes
Red shoes, the angels want to wear my red shoes

Writer/s: COSTELLO, ELVIS
Publisher: Universal Music Publishing Group
Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

(The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoes
  • In this song, Elvis makes a deal with the angels, who have come down to Earth because their wings have rusted. Needing footwear, they grant Costello immortality in exchange for his red shoes.

    His estranged girlfriend, however, is not impressed and doesn't share in his enthusiasm, telling him to drop dead and leaving the club with another guy.

    Costello wrote the song backward, starting with the club scene where the girl leaves with another guy. From there, he worked in the idea of making the deal with the angels so he stops aging. He was just 22 years old at the time, and wasn't sure why he was writing about not getting older.
  • Costello wrote this in 10 minutes while on the Inter-City train to Liverpool between the Runcorn and Lime Street stations. He didn't have a recorder with him, so he kept the song in his head until he got off the train and made it to his mother's house, where he found one of his old guitars and played the song over and over until he had it recorded to memory.
  • Nick Lowe produced the album. Costello had recently signed his record deal and didn't have a backing band, so Lowe brought in the group Clover. Alex Call, who was their lead singer, told us the story: "Clover got together in the late '60s. It was four of us, we made two albums on Fantasy - we were buddies with Creedence Clearwater Revival. We got dropped, and then Huey Lewis and our keyboard player, Shawn Hopper, joined the band and we kind of made another run at it. In the mid-'70s, we were going down to Los Angeles a lot and playing a club called The Palamino.

    The Palamino was this great Country and Western place. We were more of a rock band really, but we kind of were country. At one gig, Nick Lowe was there with Paul Carrack. Nick had been in the band Brinsley Schwartz, and The Brinsleys were big fans of the early Clover albums. So one thing led to another, and Jake Riviera, who was Elvis' manager, signed us to come to England, and we signed with Phonogram over there, which is Mercury here. Elvis Costello was at that time Dec McManus, he was using his real name. He was just this mild-mannered, meek little songwriter who would hang out around Stiff Records, which was our management office. Elvis once said, 'Man, I wish I could sing like you.'

    He went to cut some demos, and they used Clover. Huey and I did not participate in those because they had no need for us, but I remember they went and cut at this little place called Pathways - a little 8-track studio so small that all you had just enough space to play your instrument. They went in that first session, and in one session they cut 'Alison' and 'Red Shoes' and 'Less Than Zero,' these classic songs. I remember hearing them at this rock 'n' roll house we lived in outside of Headley, South of London called the Headley Grange House. John McFee brought back a reel-to-reel tape on one of those old Wollensak tape recorders. He played this stuff, and I mean, I was ready to quit after hearing that - it was so astounding. They did like three 8-12 hour sessions, and that was My Aim Is True.

    That is a classic record, just unbelievable. We were managed by the same guys and we hung out a lot with Nick. Nick produced a lot of our early sessions there. We made two albums with Mutt Lange, and nothing happened with the band. We came close in England to breaking a single, but it didn't work and we ended up breaking up." (Check out our interview with Alex Call.)
  • In 2011, Costello performed this on Sesame Street as "The Monster Went and Ate My Red 2." He had his numbers lined up from 1-10, but Cookie Monster (who does eat other things beside cookies, by the way), kept eating the red number 2, creating a counting problem.
  • This song tells a strange story, but not nearly as strange as the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale The Red Shoes, which inspired a Kate Bush song of the same name. In that story, a girl puts on a pair of red shoes that make her dance uncontrollably. She can't take them off, so she has her feet cut off, only to have the shoes continue to dance with her amputated feet inside them.

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