"There every black dress hides a story"

Part of the Annotated Horslips Lyrics Pages on
Compiled by Lee Templeton, San Francisco

There's too much rain for drive-in movies.
Instead they built a late night rendezvous.
You might get lucky, it's understood that it's up to you.

There every black dress hides a story
And every story happy-ends with you.
You don't believe it? It's understood that it's strictly true.
So try the shuffle and see. Try out the steps 'cos the lesson's free.
Try the shuffle and see.
That you're guests of the nation. And you'll never have to pay.
You're guests of the nation and you can dream 'til break of day.
You're guests of the nation. And you can dance your life away

Winter brings its own surprises
Winds of change to chill you through and through
And though you blame it on time it's understood that the blame's on you.

You wrap up close and shrug your shoulders
Nobody needs to tell you what to do.
And if it comes to the crunch you can show them a thing or two
So try...

Recorded On:

  1. Short Stories Tall Tales
  2. The Belfast Gigs
  3. Best of Horslips
  4. Roll Back

Performed Live:

  1. Bottom Line, New York, November 1979
  2. Parkwest, Chicago, April 1979 (date needs confirmation.)

Covered By:

  1. Horslypse

Guests of the Nation on You Tube

Guests of the Nation by Horslips posted on July 3, 2007

Annotated Lyrics:

"too much rain for drive-in movies"

Has anyone ever encapsulated the Irish cultural dilemma as concisely as we did here? Yes, probably. Ztak Evets brings precision handclaps on this one.

Notes on Horslips, The Best of..., Edsel Records

"every black dress hides a story"

LT: In the Official Guestbook prior to the current one, I asked if this image referred to the traditional black dress of a widow or the more stylish 'little black dress' of urban fashion that was popularized by Coco Chanel. Barry Devlin confirmed it was a reference to Coco Chanel's wardrobe staple. I am unable to locate the archived copy of that segment of the Guestbook for the exact quote.
"guests of the nation"

Title of a short story by Irish author Frank O'Connor.

As you're probably aware, SSTT's original premise (and the one I stuck to, mainly) was to use short story titles by writers with an Irish connection as the jumping off points for tall tales woven around them.

Barry Devlin, email to site, July 2007

The Annotated Horslips Lyric Project thanks Barry Devlin for his transcription of the lyrics.

First Posted: December 27, 2007
Last Revised: December 27, 2007