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"Poppa's Blues" is Poppa's introduction.  The lyrics of the song bear little relation to the plot, however, they give us insight into Poppa's character and sense of humour.  The song is also an entertaining pastiche of "Blues", and was written well before the conception of "Starlight Express".

Context

Following the events of the first Race, we are taken to a completely different scene, at a different pace. Old Poppa, a steam engine we've not yet met, is singing the Blues, hanging out with the Freight cars. The Rockies dance along, and practice their break-dancing tricks, Dustin listens with rapt attention, Flat-Top mooches around.

The scene is set for this being a very different location and mood to previous, by the use of set and lighting. Often Poppa has a set piece to sit on, an old buffer surrounded by corrugated iron and gravel. In both the original London and Bochum productions, the Bridge flies in low, framing the action in a much smaller space.

Lyrics

Original London Lyrics

ROCKY 1: Hey, Poppa's gonna sing!
FLAT-TOP: That stuff is so out of date.
ROCKY 1: Cool it man. Poppa's gonna sing!
ROCKIES: Poppa don't sing often, but he do sing mean.
POPPA: Oh the first line of the blues
Is always sung a second time (oh yeah?)
First line of the blues
Is always sung a second time (kinda smooth!)
So by the time you get to the third line
You've had time to think up a rhyme.
Oh there ain't no law that says
The third line has to be different at all.
No, no, there ain't no law that says
The third line has to be different at all.
No there ain't no law that says
The third line has to be different at all.
Never borrow a mouth organ -
Not even from your best friend.
No, no, no, never borrow a mouth organ -
Not even from your best friend.
'Cos you may survive the blowing,
But the sucking's gonna get you in the end. Oh yeah!

Bochum Lyrics

HOPPERS: Hier kommt Papa und Papa will singen!
Papa singt nicht oft, aber er sing echt stark
POPPA: Die erste Zeile im Blues
Muss immer wie die zweite sein.
Die erste Zeile im Blues
Muss immer wie die zweite sein.
Denn bis zur dritten fällt dir gewiss ein,
Was am besten passt, als Reim.
Es gibt kein Gesetz, das sagt:
Die dritte Zeile muss ganz anders sein.
Es gibt kein Gesetz, das sagt:
Die dritte Zeile muss ganz anders sein.
Es gibt kein Gesetz, das sagt:
Die dritte Zeile muss ganz anders sein.
Leih' dir bloß keine Mundorgel,
Nicht einmal von einem Freund.
Leih' dir bloß keine Mundorgel,
Nicht einmal von einem Freund.
Denn du überlebst das Blasen,
Doch am Ende wirst du der Verlierer sein.
Poppas_Blues_-_Regi_Jennings_German_Promo_2014

Poppas Blues - Regi Jennings German Promo 2014

2017 London Workshop Introduction Lyrics

ROCKY 1: Yo, look who it is!
ROCKY 2: Where you been, Rusty?
ROCKY 3: It's been too long!
ROCKY 2: You've been steaming about on the Midnight!
ROCKY 3: I hardly recognised you, man – although my vision is a little hazy right now
ROCKY 1: Good to see you, homie my homie! Just in time: Momma's gonna sing!
ROCKIES: Momma don't sing often, but she do sing mean!

2018 Bochum Introduction Lyrics

ROCKY 1: Yo, wen haben wir denn da?
ROCKY 2: Wo hast du gesteckt, Rusty?
ROCKY 3: Warst lang nicht mehr hier!
ROCKY 2: Hast dich auf der anderen Seite der Gleise rumgetrieben?
ROCKY 3: Ich erkennt dich kaum noch, man – aber ich seh im Moment sowieso alles vernebelt!
ROCKY 2: Gut dich zu sehen, alter!
ROCKY 1: Kommst gerade richtig, Mama will singen! Mama singt nicht oft,
ROCKIES: Doch sie singt echt stark!


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