Dean Owen

5 years ago · 2 min. reading time · visibility ~100 ·

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Spanish Train

"There's a Spanish train that runs between Guadalquivir and old Saville"

There are not many songs that draw you in from the very first time you hear them. This one did, and I remember clearly the first time I listened to it, drawing the record from it’s sleeve, placing it on the turntable, and carefully lowering the needle to vinyl. As I listened, I read the lyrics on the back sleeve, and the story took me in. For those who have never heard Spanish Train by Chris de Burgh, I would like to recreate that first experience. Hit play on the video – there is no video, just audio. And read the lyrics along with the song. This is the magical storytelling of singer songwriter, Chris de Burgh.


There's a Spanish train that runs between

Guadalquivir and old Saville,

And at dead of night the whistle blows,

and people hear she's running still...

And then they hush their children back to sleep,

Lock the doors, upstairs they creep,

For it is said that the souls of the dead

Fill that train ten thousand deep!!

Well a railwayman lay dying with his people by his side,

His family were crying, knelt in prayer before he died,

But above his bed just a-waiting for the dead,

Was the Devil with a twinkle in his eye,

"Well God's not around and look what I've found,

this one's mine!!"

Just then the Lord himself appeared in a blinding flash of light,

And shouted at the Devil, "Get thee hence to endless night!!"

But the Devil just grinned and said "I may have sinned,

But there's no need to push me around,

I got him first so you can do your worst,

He's going underground!!"

"But I think I'll give you one more chance"

said the Devil with a smile,

"So throw away that stupid lance,

It's really not your style",

"Joker is the name, Poker is the game,

we'll play right here on this bed,

And then we'll bet for the biggest stakes yet,

the souls of the dead!!"

And I said "Look out, Lord, He's going to win,

The sun is down and the night is riding in,

That train is dead on time, many souls are on the line,

Oh Lord, He's going to win!.."

Well the railwayman he cut the cards

And he dealt them each a hand of five,

And for the Lord he was praying hard

Or that train he'd have to drive...

Well the Devil he had three aces and a king,

And the Lord, he was running for a straight,

He had the queen and the knave and nine and ten of spades,

All he needed was the eight...

And then the Lord he called for one more card,

But he drew the diamond eight,

And the Devil said to the son of God,

"I believe you've got it straight,

So deal me one for the time has come

To see who'll be the king of this place,

But as he spoke, from beneath his cloak,

He slipped another ace...

Ten thousand souls was the opening bid,

And it soon went up to fifty-nine,

But the Lord didn't see what the Devil did,

And he said "that suits me fine",

"I'll raise you high to a hundred and five,

And forever put an end to your sins",

But the Devil let out a mighty shout, "My hand wins!!"

And I said "Lord, oh Lord, you let him win,

The sun is down and the night is riding in,

That train is dead on time, many souls are on the line,

Oh Lord, don't let him win..."

Well that Spanish train still runs between,

Guadalquivir and old Saville,

And at dead of night the whistle blows,

And people fear she's running still...

And far away in some recess

The Lord and the Devil are now playing chess,

The Devil still cheats and wins more souls,

And as for the Lord, well, he's just doing his best...

And I said "Lord, oh Lord, you've got to win,

The sun is down and the night is riding in,

That train is still on time, oh my soul is on the line,

Oh Lord, you've got to win..."

For those who made it this far, would love to hear how you felt.

Dean Owen is Co-Founder of Quimojo, a revolutionary new concept in Global Campus Recruitment.

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Dean Owen

5 years ago #7

Wow, you have The Getaway, First person I have met in a long while who has a Chris de Burgh album. I think I bought The Getaway as an album, CD, and on i-Tunes, but then again, I have them all. Bought a twelve string guitar to play songs like "Where Peaceful Waters Flow". Thanks Chas.

Dean Owen

5 years ago #6

Pretty surprised at the turnout to today's Chris de Burgh concert! Thanks all. This one is for the soldiers and the loved ones they left behind "Borderline":

Dean Owen

5 years ago #5

Thanks Susan Clark. Chris de Burgh never made it huge on the charts, apart from The Lady in Red, but his albums have sold 45 million. Some seriously good songs in his portfolio "In a Country Churchyard" "Broken Wings" "Borderline" are 3 amazing songs. A good CD to start off with is "Best Moves" or "At the end of a perfect day". "In a country churchyard" is a perfect song for a wedding.

Dean Owen

5 years ago #4

"The Devil Went Down to Georgia" was actually the first single I ever bought, along with a song called OK Fred.

Dean Owen

5 years ago #3

Thanks Donna-Luisa Eversley. Glad you enjoyed it.

Ken Boddie

5 years ago #2

I'm used to 'Old Nick' getting his backside kicked (e.g. 'The Devil Went Down to Georgia') so I guess the score is one all now .... or is it? 😈

Gert Scholtz

5 years ago #1

This brings back good memories!

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