f you ever want to get depressed just come to this town
Hard to top that as an opening line. Nice internal rhyme with the next line
Nothin’ to do from dinner to breakfast in this town
Roger tells us about the 4 street lights—I lived in a Texas town with 2, so I know how small he means. But “one old grocery” ? We had half a dozen of various sizes.
Try singing this as fast as you can:
Soon the cotton’s gonna open up and Im gonna pick it
Just long enough to make enough to buy myself a ticket
He accents the second line with staccato strums. Here, he rhymes at the end of the line. (Ha. End of the line. There’s a joke in their somewhere.)
Well we dont reap, we dont sow in this town
Things are so bad the weeds wont grow in this town
Methinks he’s exaggerating. As a child, Roger was pulled away from his siblings after his father’s death and raised by an uncle and aunt. So many of his songs yearn to go home, or decry wherever the singer is right now.
Instead of breaking our hearts this time, he gives us a reason to chuckle about the places we’ve been whose best quality was the road out of town.
I’m bound to catch the next Greyhound leavin’ this town
(If you want a copy of This Town you’re going to have to get it on vinyl. The one and only place it occurs is on the album 3rd Time Around. What a shame that such a witty and musically engaging tune hasn’t been collected in some “every song Roger Miller ever wrote” box set. For which, by the way, I’d spend money I don’t have.)
(More parentheses: you can get your vinyl copy of Roger Miller’s 3rd Time Around at Gemm, a real gem for finding out of print stuff. Sadly, I don’t make a commission on that link. Please mail me a nickel. Even a Canadian nickel.)