Feel The Nostalgia In Jonathan Richman and The Modern Lovers ‘Abdul and Cleopatra’ Performance In 1979

Feel The Nostalgia In Jonathan Richman and The Modern Lovers ‘Abdul and Cleopatra’ Performance In 1979 | I Love Classic Rock Videos

via Far Out Magazine / Youtube

On their album Back In Your Life, Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers truly breathed color into the graying world of post-punk guitar music.  Richman and the band were willing to play songs that combined the unvarnished honesty of errant kindergarteners with the ludicrous storytelling of others who were trying too hard to be edgy and cliched.

With that, Back In Your Life’s lead single, “Abdul and Cleopatra,” combines the band’s signature blend of youthful sexual appetite and ancient vibe drenched in the summer sun. Perhaps the best illustration of Richman’s unabashedly independent songwriting style, “Abdul and Cleopatra” is both absurd and completely original.

In addition to that, Jonathan Richman & the Modern Lovers combine amusing lyrics with punk simplicity and lovable awkwardness in this rare archived footage from TopPop, the Netherlands’ first TV program dedicated to pop music (it aired from 1970 to 1988).

Richman’s trembling voice in the 1979 clip makes the performance so raw, so real, and gives that certain charm in front of a live audience. The band’s performance surely needs to be watched right now.

Sing along to the “Abdul and Cleopatra” song lyrics below.

 

+ Abdul and Cleopatra +

By: The Modern Lovers

 

Abdul’s not seen Cleopatra

It’s been almost now a year

How I wonder where she’s at-ra

And I wish the old girl were here

Abdul yearns for Cleopatra in the early morning sun

Abdul loves Cleopatra, she’s still the one

 

You know, I love Cleopatra

I’m just grateful that I know that old girl

Even though I wonder where she’s at-ra

As I wander through this world

And Abdul yearns for Cleopatra, Abdul takes her or takes none

Abdul loves Cleopatra, she’s still the one

All right, Leroy, tell them…

 

Well, Cleopatra, take my patience and test it

(test it)

Cleopatra, take your time as ye may

(as ye may)

My time has been well-spent

(well-spent)

I done cleaned up my tent

(his tent)

You’ll like it when you see it someday

 

I will wait for Cleopatra

For I know my time must come

And I’m gettin’ ready for wherever she’ll be at-ra

Cause I’m gettin’ stronger now and not so dumb

Abdul yearns for Cleopatra in the early desert sun

I love Cleopatra, she’s still the one

I love Cleopatra, she’s still the one

I love Cleopatra, she’s still the one

I love Cleopatra, she’s still the one

Abdul loves Cleopatra, she’s still the one

I love Cleopatra, she’s still the one

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