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Matt McErlean: Music

Jacks Or Better To Open (The Jokers Are Wild 1980)

(Words & Music: Matt McErlean)

Jacks Or Better To Open (The Jokers Are Wild 1980)

 

Verse 1

Late, I’m beat.

Really should rest, but I just couldn’t sleep.

So just once more, thought I’d give it my best.

 

Been trying very hard, for very long,

To put the words to the music, in my songs,

And tell you in rhyme, all the things I wanted to say.

 

The cards had run bad, all through the night,

I was past getting drunk, I was already tight,

I just didn’t have the strength to leave.

 

Maybe if I were more of a man,

Or if I held my will in the palm of my hand,

Then that wouldn’t have been such a hard way to go.

 

Hook

I hadn’t won one hand all evening.

Jacks or better to open, you know that I only got tens.

 

 

 

The Jokers Are Wild, one-eyed kings, too.

But they can’t beat, this crazy eight love, darling I’ve got for you.

I couldn’t count the cards, never got the odds right.

Still trying to leave, but the boy was much too tight.

 

Verse 2

Got up from my chair and tried to get to my car,

But I only made it, as far as the bar.

It’s always been hard to pass up a free drink.

 

I drank the first two, and the third one drank me,

All of a sudden, it was plain to see,

My luck had finally decided to change.

 

Barmaid got her tip and I turned around,

I headed back to the table to lay my last dollar down.

Everyone knew, they could see I was hot.

 

I called for a fresh deck and I called for a drink.

What I really was doing was stalling to think.

Wouldn’t you know it, I thought about you.

 

Hook

I hadn’t won one hand all evening.

Jacks or better to open, but you know that I only got tens.

 

The Jokers Are Wild, one-eyed kings, too.

But they can’t beat, this crazy eight love, that darling I’ve got for you.

I couldn’t count the cards, never got the odds right.

Was dying to leave, but the boy was much too tight.

 

Instrumental Solo

Hook

Hadn’t won one hand all evening.

Jacks or better to open, you know that I’ve only got tens.

 

Verse 3

Got back to my room and recounted my loss,

And I couldn’t believe how much it had cost.

Know that what I wanted to win was you.

 

How could I have gone so far wrong,

To play the same old losing game so long,

Now it doesn’t seem so hard to see.

 

You know what they about hindsight,

But it doesn’t make it easy and it doesn’t make it right.

And I know you know, I was wrong.

 

But I’m for you, could you be for me?

A royal flush in cards is what I seem to need.

But then I’m just your fool when it comes to cards.

 

Hook

I hadn’t won one hand all evening.

Jacks or better to open, but I only got tens.

 

The Jokers Are Wild, one-eyed kings, too.

But they can’t beat, this crazy eight love, darling I’ve got for you.

I couldn’t count the cards, never got the odds right.

Getting beaten by the Queen of Hearts every time, was getting tired.

 

Outro

Show you my cards if you want to see,

Exactly what it is that you mean to me.

It’s an open card game there ain’t no limit,

All that’s here is what you put in it.