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Ellis Paul

Translucent Soul

I get a call from Vance he's an old friend
He's got some you-won't-believe-story to share
He's the place that I go when I need someone who knows me
He brings the smile of a billionaire

And I laugh when he pretends he's a white guy
'Cause he knows how bad I fail playing black
He says, "If even you could, I don't advise that you should
'Cause once you go there you might not want to turn back"

There isn't a thing
in this God-all-mighty world that I wouldn't do
to help him outta trouble
Seein' as how we're friends and
that goes deeper than skin can go
to a translucent soul
Deeper than color will show
translucent soul

He says, "Now, you and I, I know we look a little different,
but, I was raised middle class, same as you.
But, let's make it clear even on the way here,
I had to watch for blue lights in the rear view "
He says, "Last week, I was visiting L.A.,
walking the streets where the riots went down.
You got black killing black killing black killing black,
while all the whites were sweating bullets across town"


He says, "In L.A., they're whispering race war,
like it's something that has yet to begin
like they can plug up the cracks
in four hundred years of history
and prove that the melting pot's not broken"
He says, "In the event of some unlikely disaster,
we find ourselves armed, and face to face "
I said, "I'd turn around, I would protect your ground"
He said, "I'd do the same thing for you at your place"


There isn't a thing
in this God-all-mighty world that he wouldn't do
to help me outta trouble . . .

Embrace what you have in common,
celebrate what sets you apart
It takes more than the color
that you find on a palette
to turn humanity into an art
into the form of an art
translucent soul
translucent soul

Ellis Paul Music (SESAC) 1998