In my previous article, I have discussed “Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love To Town” sung by the one and only Kenny Rogers. And now, this is the answer song, “Billy, I’ve Got To Go To Town.” It talks about the side of the woman, the woman “Ruby” who left and went to town.
Furthermore, this article and this song would clarify then “Ruby.” In “Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love To Town,” it was merely understood that “Ruby” went somewhere to find another lover. With this, it’s understandable that she cheated according to the man. Contrary, Ruby has her sentiments, and she will explain her side of the story.
An answer song to “Ruby,” entitled “Billy, I’ve Got to Go to Town,” was released in 1969 by Geraldine Stevens, who had previously recorded successfully under the name Dodie Stevens. Sung to the same melody with an arrangement quite similar to the First Edition version, “Billy” peaked at number 117 pop, number 57 country.
In Stevens’s song, Ruby affirms her love for her disabled husband, who is named “Billy” in her song whereas in “Ruby,” he is not named, and she pleads in turn for her man to have faith in her fidelity and her commitment to him, even in his paralyzed condition.
In 1972, Bobby Womack released the album “Understanding” which included the song “Ruby Dean.” In addition, the lyrics and melody are similar to “Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love to Town” but the story is told from the perspective of Ruby’s son. Moreover, the son urges his mother to respect his father and to stop seeing other men. In the original song, no children between the couple are ever mentioned.
I’ve painted up my lips and rolled and curled my tinted hair
Billy now you’re sure I’m going to cheat on you somewhere
Don’t know how much longer I can stand this jealousy
Oh Billy, please have some faith in me
Begged you not to go and fight that crazy Asian war
But you believed so strongly in what you were fighting for
And now you’ve got to sit and stare at shadows on the ground
Oh Billy, I’ve got to go to town
I’d gladly give the world if I could make you understand
But I said “I Do,” and that’s still true; you’ll always be my man
They robbed you of your legs; don’t let them strip you of your pride
Oh Billy, you’re still a man inside
Don’t make me leave this house with you accusing me of wrongCause Billy it’s so hard to go and leave you here alone
You’ve given all you’ve got to give and now it’s up to me
Oh Billy, that’s how it’s got to be
Oh my Billy, for god’s sake trust in me.
For your reference, I have included Kenny Rogers’ “Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love To Town”: Yes, She Did music video and lyrics as well as the link to the previous article. Just click the title.
You’ve painted up your lips and rolled and curled your tinted hair
Ruby are you contemplating going out somewhere?
The shadows on the wall tell me the sun is going down
Oh Ruby, don’t take your love to townIt wasn’t me that started that old crazy Asian war
But I was proud to go and do my patriotic chore
And yes, it’s true that I’m not the man I used to be
Oh Ruby, I still need some company
And, It Goes…It’s hard to love a man whose legs are bent and paralyzed
And the wants and needs of a woman your age really I realize
But it won’t be long, I’ve heard them say, until I’m not around
Oh Ruby, don’t take your love to townShe’s leaving now cause I just heard the slamming of the door
The way I know I heard its slams one hundred times before
And if I could move I’d get my gun and put her in the ground
Oh Ruby, don’t take your love to townOh Ruby, for God’s sake, turn around
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