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Bobbie Gentry - Fancy Lyrics

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  • Well, I remember it all very well lookin' back
  • It was the summer that I turned eighteen.
  • We lived in a one-room, run down shack
  • on the outskirts of New Orleans.
  • We didn't have money for food or rent
  • to say the least we were hard-pressed
  • when Momma spent every last penny we had
  • to buy me a dancin' dress.
  • Well, Momma washed and combed and curled my hair,
  • then she painted my eyes and lips.
  • Then I stepped into the satin dancin' dress.
  • It was split in the side clean up to my hips.
  • It was red, velvet-trimmed, and it fit me good
  • and starin' back from the lookin' glass
  • was a woman
  • where a half grown kid had stood.
  • She said, "Here's your one chance, Fancy, don't let me down!
  • Here's your one chance, Fancy, don't let me down.
  • Lord forgive me for what I do,
  • but if you want out girl it's up to you.
  • Now get on out, you better start sleepin' uptown."
  • Momma dabbed a little bit of perfume
  • on my neck and she kissed my cheek
  • Then I saw the tears welling up
  • in her troubled eyes when she started to speak
  • She looked at our pitiful shack and then
  • she looked at me and took a ragged breath
  • "Your Pa's runned off, and I'm real sick
  • and the baby's gonna starve to death."
  • She handed me a heart-shaped locket that said
  • "To thine own self be true"
  • and I shivered as I watched a roach crawl across
  • the toe of my high-healed shoe
  • It sounded like somebody else was talkin'
  • askin', "Momma what do I do?"
  • She said, "Just be nice to the gentlemen, Fancy.
  • They'll be nice to you."
  • She said, "Here's your one chance, Fancy, don't let me down!
  • Here's your one chance, Fancy, don't let me down.
  • Lord, forgive me for what I do,
  • But if you want out, well it's up to you
  • Now get on out, girl, you better start movin' uptown."
  • Well, that was the last time I saw my momma
  • when I left that rickety shack
  • 'Cause the welfare people came and took the baby.
  • Momma died and I ain't been back.
  • But the wheels of fate had started to turn
  • and for me there was no other way out.
  • It wasn't very long 'till I knew exactly
  • what my momma was talkin' 'bout.
  • I knew what I had to do.
  • But I made myself this solemn vow:
  • That I was gonna to be a lady someday
  • though I didn't know when or how.
  • I couldn't see spendin' the rest of my life
  • with my head hung down in shame.
  • I mighta been born just plain white trash
  • but Fancy was my name.
  • "Here's your one chance, Fancy, don't let me down!
  • Here's your one chance, Fancy, don't let me down.
  • Wasn't long after that a benevolent man
  • took me in off the streets
  • One week later I was pourin' his tea
  • in a five roomed penthouse suite.
  • Since then I've charmed a king, a congressman
  • and an occasional aristocrat
  • and I got me a Georgia mansion
  • and an elegant New York townhouse flat.
  • Now I ain't done bad
  • Now in this world there's a lot of self-righteous
  • hypocrites that would call me bad.
  • They criticize Momma for turning me out
  • No matter how little we had.
  • And though I haven't had to worry 'bout nothin'
  • now for nigh on fifteen years
  • I can still hear the desperation
  • in my poor mommas voice ringin' in my ears.
  • "Here's your one chance, Fancy, don't let me down!
  • Here's your one chance, Fancy, don't let me down.
  • Lord forgive me for what I do,
  • but if you want out well it's up to you.
  • Now get on out, you better move uptown.
  • And I guess she did"

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