Diamond in the Sleaze
By: Beck Hansen

Written by: Beck Hansen

Versions:
  1. Diamond in the Sleaze (4:06)
    Available on Beck - Super Rare! Vol. 1 and 2 other releases.
    Credits
    Beck Hansen: Bass, Guitar (Acoustic), Guitar (Electric), Producer, Vocals
    Roger Joseph Manning Jr.: Drums, keyboards, Percussion, Synthesizer
    Tony Hoffer: Engineer
    David Ralicke: Flute
    Mickey Petralia: Mix
 
Lyrics:
Diamond in the Sleaze [Version (a)]:

A diamond in the sleaze, down on bended knees
A thousand grizzled nerves hanging loose at the ends
It's later than you think, it's gone before you blink
Out of the crosshairs, into the crowd
Do you want to see me suffering?
Do you want to see me suffering?
How could you let a good thing go?
How could you let a good thing go, go, oh?

A lion in a cage shakes his golden mane
He doesn't care who notices where he's gonna lie
He came to beg a meal, you're older than you feel
The keyboard of your memory is coming apart
It's a weight upon my shoulder
It's a weight upon my shoulder
How could you let a good thing go?
How could you let a good thing go, go, oh?
I won't ever let you go
I won't ever let you go

The doctor takes a rest inside a hornet's nest
With Polaroids of patients who refuse to be cured
A life lived under glass and stolen Cadillacs
Can you hear the saxophones peeling the paint?
Do you want to see me suffering?
Do you want to see me suffering?
How could you let a good thing go?
How could you let a good thing go, go, oh?
I won't ever let you go
I won't ever let you go
I won't ever let you go
I won't ever let you go
 
The Song:

"Diamond in the Sleaze" is a song Beck recorded after Mutations came out, but soon enough to be able to use it as a B-side for some of the album's singles. The song is highlighted by some very fine acoustic guitar and flute (by Brass Menagerie member, David Ralicke). It is a very laidback, pleasant groove, with a very simple, breezy arrangement if nothing brilliantly earth-shattering. Beck plays all the guitars, and even the melodic bass line.

Lyrically, it's hard to tell how old "Diamond in the Sleaze" is, though it is most likely not nearly as old "One of These Days" (which was recorded and released at around the same time). As he often did in his early folk songs, Beck uses a host of musical images ("the keyboard of your memory is coming apart"; "can you hear the saxophones peeling the paint?") and also alludes to success ("a life lived under glass"; "a diamond in the sleaze"). The line about the lion shaking its golden mane might also refer to a performer, though he does not seem to be using it as a comment or anything, so perhaps he's just singing about a lion. And that's the biggest problem with the lyrics, there's a bunch of images and stories (lions, keyboards, doctors), but I'm not sure there's a point.
 
Live:

Not ever played live.
 
Notes: