Song Lyric Sunday – End of the Line

This week our host for Song Lyric Sunday, Jim Adams, has prompted us with Begin, End, Finish and Start. I came up with a shortlist of songs I could think of and settled for “End of the Line” by the Traveling Wilburys. I love the chance to see the late George Harrison and Tom Petty together in this great video.

“End of the Line” is a song by the British-American supergroup the Traveling Wilburys. Released in October 1988, it was the final track on their debut album, Traveling Wilburys Vol. 1. It was also issued as the band’s second single, in January 1989. The recording features all the Wilburys except Bob Dylan as lead singers: George Harrison, Jeff Lynne (ELO) and Roy Orbison sing the choruses in turn, while Tom Petty sings the verses. The song was mainly written by Harrison and was assigned to his publishing company, Umlaut Corporation. In keeping with the collaborative concept behind the Wilburys project, however, all five members received a songwriting credit.

They were named after a slang term that George Harrison and Jeff Lynne gave to studio equipment. The pair referred to equalizers and limiters as “wilburys,” as in “we’ll bury that mistake in the mix.”

The music video for “End of the Line” was directed by Willy Smax. It was filmed in Los Angeles shortly after Orbison’s death in December 1988, and features Dylan’s participation. To honor Orbison, a shot of a guitar sitting in a rocking chair next to a photo of him was used when his vocals are heard.

The Traveling Wilburys recorded two albums, the first in 1988 and the second in 1990, though Roy Orbison died before the second was laid down.

Their 1988 album Travelling Wilburys Volume One won the 1989 Grammy award for Best Rock Performance by a Group with Vocals.

In the United States, the single peaked at No. 63 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, while peaking at No. 2 on the Album Rock Tracks chart, blocked out the top spot by “Driven Out” by The Fixx and “Working on It” by Chris Rea.

The song was used over the end credits of the final episode of the British sitcom One Foot in the Grave and the American comedy Parks and Recreation.

“End of the Line” appeared in the George Harrison-produced cult comedy Checking Out.

A version sung by Dennis Waterman was used as the theme tune for the pilot of the BBC production New Tricks. The song has also been included in TV spots for the 2004 film The Terminal, as well as the trailer for the 2007 hit comedy Knocked Up.

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers played this song live during their 2008 North American tour.

Harrison was honoured in the parody song “No Where Near the End of My Time” by radio on-air personality Bob Rivers.

The song was used on the end credits of the Australian family comedy film Red Dog: True Blue in 2016 and for an episode of HBO’s Crashing in 2018.

Courtesy of Songfacts and Wiki


Well it's all right, riding around in the breeze
Well it's all right, if you live the life you please
Well it's all right, doing the best you can
Well it's all right, as long as you lend a hand

You can sit around and wait for the phone
to ring (end of the line)
Waiting for someone to tell you everything (end of the line)
Sit around and wonder what tomorrow will bring
(end of the line)
Maybe a diamond ring

Well it's all right, even if they say you're wrong
Well it's all right, sometimes you gotta be strong
Well it's all right, as long as you got somewhere to lay
Well it's all right, everyday is judgment day

Maybe somewhere down the road aways (end of the line)
You'll think of me, wonder where I am these days
(end of the line)
Maybe somewhere down the road when somebody plays
(end of the line)
Purple haze

Well it's all right, even when push comes to shove
Well it's all right, if you got someone to love
Well it's all right, everything'll work out fine
Well it's all right, we're going to the end of the line

Don't have to be ashamed of the car I drive
(end of the line)
I'm just glad to be here, happy to be alive
(end of the line)
It don't matter if you're by my side
(end of the line)
I'm satisfied

Well it's all right, even if you're old and grey
Well it's all right, you still got something to say
Well it's all right, remember to live and let live
Well it's all right, the best you can do is forgive

Well it's all right, riding around in the breeze
Well it's all right, if you live the life you please
Well it's all right, even if the sun don't shine
Well it's all right, we're going to the end of the line

Wrirer/s: Robert Dylan, George Harrison, Jeffrey Lynne, Roy Kelton Orbison, Thomas Earl Petty 

Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

  20 comments for “Song Lyric Sunday – End of the Line

  1. November 19, 2020 at 11:07 pm

    Great choice!

  2. November 15, 2020 at 12:37 pm

    I love the tribute they give to Roy Orbison in this.

    • Christine Bolton
      November 15, 2020 at 1:11 pm

      Yes that was really cool John. So sad that those three greats have gone.

  3. November 15, 2020 at 11:47 am

    Just had a little jig around the bedroom while I listened to this … 🤗

    • Christine Bolton
      November 15, 2020 at 1:10 pm

      Yes it’s such a great song for doing that! I’m happy you got a kick out of it ☺️💕

  4. November 15, 2020 at 9:10 am

    I love this song Christine and you can’t do any better than the Traveling Wilburys, Do you think that George Harrison put that line in about Purple haze as a tribute to Jimi Hendrix?

    • Christine Bolton
      November 15, 2020 at 11:33 am

      He may well have done that Jim. It would fit the song. Then again it rhymed with days! 😁 I love this song too.

  5. November 15, 2020 at 8:02 am

    Perfect choice! They were all great separately, but together, they were magical! 🙂

    • Christine Bolton
      November 15, 2020 at 8:21 am

      Thanks Lisa. Agreed! They were phenomenal 🥰

      • November 15, 2020 at 4:41 pm

        Yep they were! 🙂

  6. November 15, 2020 at 1:09 am

    Great song!

    • Christine Bolton
      November 15, 2020 at 8:00 am

      Thanks Paula ☺️

  7. badfinger20 (Max)
    November 14, 2020 at 11:59 pm

    Excellent Choice! I love Roy’s voice in this…and everything.

    • November 15, 2020 at 3:30 am

      What an amazing group they were! And that’s one of my favourite songs of theirs , as far as I am concerned George Harrison can do no wrong 💜

      • badfinger20 (Max)
        November 15, 2020 at 3:34 am

        The Beatles have always been my favorite bar none so naturally I loved the Wilburys. What other band would you have both Dylan and Orbison?
        I agree with the George comment… he brought them all together. I love George’s music and he seemed to be a great human being.

      • November 15, 2020 at 6:54 am

        George was the best of Beatles in every sense of the word. Not much time for Lennon or McCartney. They changed the face of music , but as a group very short lived . Everyone of the Wilburys alive or dead is a force to be reckoned with 💜

      • Christine Bolton
        November 15, 2020 at 8:20 am

        Yes he certainly was a gentle soul ☺️😢

      • Christine Bolton
        November 15, 2020 at 8:19 am

        Thanks Willow. I always thought the Wilburys were such a fantastic collaboration of geniuses. Shame too many are dead.

      • November 15, 2020 at 9:45 am

        It’s so sad 💜 luckily their magic music lives on 💜

    • Christine Bolton
      November 15, 2020 at 7:59 am

      Thanks so much! Yes, his voice still gives me goosebumps. I’m happy you enjoyed it ☺️

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