Song Lyric Sunday – Joe diMaggio

I almost chose this song a couple of weeks ago as my theme song for a movie, The Graduate. However, Mrs. Robinson, by Simon and Garfunkel, fit the challenge for Song Lyric Sunday this week as it mentions someone famous. Former NY Yankee, Joe DiMaggio.

Regarding the famous line, “Where have you gone Joe DiMaggio?”: DiMaggio was a star baseball player for the New York Yankees who was briefly married to Marilyn Monroe. Simon was using him to represent heroes of the past. DiMaggio was a little miffed when he heard this, since he was still very much alive even though he retired from baseball in 1951, but he realized that he had become a new icon now with the baby boomer generation due to this song’s success.

Simon, who is a huge fan of The Yankees, explained in a 1990 interview with SongTalk magazine: “The Joe DiMaggio line was written right away in the beginning. And I don’t know why or where it came from. It seems so strange, like it didn’t belong in that song and then, I don’t know, it was so interesting to us that we just kept it. So it’s one of the most well-known lines that I’ve ever written.”

Paul Simon was a much bigger fan of Mickey Mantle than Joe DiMaggio. On The Dick Cavett Show, Simon was asked by Mantle why he wasn’t mentioned in the song instead of DiMaggio. Simon replied, “It’s about syllables, Mick. It’s about how many beats there are.”

When DiMaggio died in 1999, it was a very emotional event for many baseball fans who grew up watching him play. The part of this song that mentions him summed of the feelings of many people who felt there was no one left to look up to. Simon wrote an editorial about DiMaggio in The New York Times shortly after his death.

Lyrics
Mrs. Robinson
Simon & Garfunkel


And here's to you, Mrs. Robinson
Jesus loves you more than you will know
Whoa, whoa, whoa
God bless you, please, Mrs. Robinson
Heaven holds a place for those who pray
Hey, hey, hey
Hey, hey, hey

We'd like to know a little bit about you for our files
We'd like to help you learn to help yourself
Look around you all you see are sympathetic eyes
Stroll around the grounds until you feel at home

And here's to you, Mrs. Robinson
Jesus loves you more than you will know
Whoa, whoa, whoa
God bless you, please, Mrs. Robinson
Heaven holds a place for those who pray
Hey, hey, hey
Hey, hey, hey

Hide it in the hiding place where no one ever goes
Put it in your pantry with your cupcakes
It's a little secret just the Robinson's affair
Most of all you've got to hide it from the kids

Koo-koo-ka-choo, Mrs. Robinson
Jesus loves you more than you will know
Whoa, whoa, whoa
God bless you, please, Mrs. Robinson
Heaven holds a place for those who pray
Hey, hey, hey
Hey, hey, hey

Sitting on a sofa on a Sunday afternoon
Going to the candidates' debate
Laugh about it, shout about it
When you've got to choose
Every way you look at this you lose

Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio?
Our nation turns its lonely eyes to you
Woo, woo, woo
What's that you say, Mrs. Robinson?
Jolting Joe has left and gone away
Hey, hey, hey
Hey, hey, hey

Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Paul Simon
Mrs. Robinson lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

  11 comments for “Song Lyric Sunday – Joe diMaggio

  1. August 11, 2019 at 6:10 am

    Great choice Christine – I love this song :O) x

    • Christine Bolton
      August 13, 2019 at 12:10 am

      Thanks Lisa. It’s timeless, isn’t it? 💕🙂

  2. August 11, 2019 at 5:04 pm

    Christine you picked a perfect song for today. I absolutely loved your write up and the Graduate video was real cool. Thanks for joining in again.

    • Christine Bolton
      August 11, 2019 at 11:35 pm

      Oh you’re so sweet Jim. Thank you. You probably liked the Yankee references, right?

      • August 12, 2019 at 10:04 am

        Yes that was real nice, although I was always a Mets fan. I did know about Paul Simon having a connection with Mickey Mantle but I loved your story about him asking why he wasn’t in a song.

      • Christine Bolton
        August 12, 2019 at 10:21 am

        Thanks Jim. I found the story on songfacts, I think. That’s what is so great about your weekly prompts…you do such a great job. Thank you 🙂💕

  3. August 11, 2019 at 5:49 pm

    NICE! Never knew DiMaggio wasn’t thrilled about being mentioned in the song, but laughed when Simon told Mantle it was all about syllables! LOL! Thanks for the post!

    • Christine Bolton
      August 11, 2019 at 11:34 pm

      Yes Felicia I had heard that before but I never knew about the Mickey Mantle thing and the syllables. What a great answer! 🙂

  4. August 12, 2019 at 1:44 am

    Great song choice. And great backstory, as well.

    • Christine Bolton
      August 12, 2019 at 8:05 am

      Thanks Fandango. Yes! Pretty cool story 🙂

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