Music hardly heard: “What Kind of Friend”

I’ve had this song buzzing through my brain lately. Not sure why.

Mark Heard is one of those musicians few people have heard about and even fewer have actually heard.

And yet, he’s important.

The line I’ve been chewing over lately is this one:

“What kind of friends do friends become when the musical chairs get down to one?”

There’s enough humor there to visualize, yet enough subtext to make you think. Like good art should, I guess.

Ever have one of those songs? The kind of song that none of your friends have heard and you don’t necessarily want to share it with them?

Full lyrics:
What kind of a friend could pull a knife when it’s him or you and his kids need shoes?
What kind of friend would do you in, when the bomb goes off and the shelter’s his?
What kind of friends do friends become when the musical chairs get down to one?
What kind of friend could I become?
What kind of friend am I?

What kind of friend would tell you lies to spare you from the bitter truth?
And what kind of friend could stoop so low as to shield your eyes from the mirror’s gaze?
What kind of friends do friends become when a blind eye turns on the damage done?
What kind of friend could I become?
What kind of friend am I?

And what kind of friend survives the night in a frightened sense of self-defence?
What kind of friend can take the ache of losing face for friendship’s sake?
What kind of friend do friends become when the heart says “kill” and the soul says “love”?
What kind of friend could I become?
What kind of friend am I?

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