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  • Janis Ian with Steve Goodman - photo by Peter Cunningham
  • Janis Ian with Conny v.d. Bos & Willie Dobbe
  • Janis Ian with Jodie Foster, Adrian Lyme & others, celebrating the release of 'Foxes'
  • Janis Ian with Mel Torme, Della Reese & unknown - photo Bettina Cirone
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  • Janis Ian with Dave van Ronk 01 - photo by Peter Cunningham
  • Janis Ian with Dave van Ronk 02 - photo by Peter Cunningham
  • Janis Ian with Dave van Ronk 03 - photo by Peter Cunningham
Billie's Bones

Matthew

Janis Ian

Footsteps on gravel at the neighborhood bar
Things start to unravel, then they go too far
The sound of pain written on the wind
fades to grey and then goes dim

A boy is tied to a barbed wire fence
for the crows to ride and the claws to clench
For the sweet bouquet of blood and bone
to undermine the scent of collegiate cologne

What makes a man a man?
The cut of a coat, the hint of a tan?
It's not who you love, but whether you can
What makes a man a man?

Who did he harm, what was the crime?
Did he walk too lightly, did he seem too shy?
Did he make them wonder deep inside?
Did they feel like real men when he died?

Did the waning moon look down from on high?
Did the twinkling stars try to catch his eye?
Did the wind caress his flesh and bone?
Did they leave him there to die alone?

What makes a man a man?
The cut of a coat, the hint of a tan?
It's not who you love, but whether you can
What makes a man a man

Now the stars are nailed to an empty sky
The moon is pinned like a butterfly
and I'm afraid to shine too bright
since the day they took his life

So mothers, teach your children this
Don't overreach, don't run the risk
Hide in the shadows, don't expect
your good heart to save your neck

What makes a man a man?
The cut of a coat, the hint of a tan?
It's not who you love, but whether you can
What makes a man a man?

© Rude Girl Pub. All rights reserved; international copyright secured.

Tour Dates

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All tour dates updated on December 17, 2018

  • Thursday, January 31st

    Island Library, Holmes Beach, FL

    Island Library

    Holmes Beach, FL

    Phone: 941-778-6341

    Visit the venue's website

    Island Library
    5701 Marina Drive
    Holmes Beach, FL 34217
    Janis will be speaking about her career as a performing songwriter and author of the Grammy-winning audiobook "Society's Child: My Autobiography", along with "The Tiny Mouse", a children's book. The talk will be illustrated with a few songs and a Q&A. Merchandise will be offered for sale (cash/check preferred) to benefit The Pearl Foundation and the Island Library equally, and Janis is happy to sign items after the talk is over. For information please call 941-778-6341. * Please note, this is a co-venture with the Waterline Marriott next door to the library. The actual talk will take place at the Waterline, piped into the library and then offered on line. Expect laughter and tears on gorgeous Anna Maria Island! 

  • Wednesday, March 6th

    Tiedtke Concert Hall, Winter Park, FL

    Tiedtke Concert Hall

    Winter Park, FL

    Phone: 407-646-2233

    Visit the venue's website

    Master Class - Free Event.

  • Thursday, March 7th

    Tiedtke Concert Hall, Winter Park, FL

    Tiedtke Concert Hall

    Winter Park, FL

    Phone: 407-646-2233

    Visit the venue's website

    Free show.

  • Thursday, August 8th

    Egyptian Theatre, Park City, UT

    Egyptian Theatre

    Park City, UT

    Phone: 435-649-9371

    Visit the venue's website

    Master Class with Livingston Taylor.

    10AM to 2PM

  • Friday, August 9th

    Egyptian Theatre, Park City, UT

    Egyptian Theatre

    Park City, UT

    Phone: 435.649.9371

    Visit the venue's website

    With Livingston Taylor.

    Tickets on sale May 1, 2019.

  • Saturday, August 10th

    Egyptian Theatre, Park City, UT

    Egyptian Theatre

    Park City, UT

    Phone: 435-649-9371

    Visit the venue's website

    With Livingston Taylor.

    Tickets on sale May 1, 2019.

  • Sunday, August 11th

    Egyptian Theatre, Park City, UT

    Egyptian Theatre

    Park City, UT

    Phone: 435-649-9371

    Visit the venue's website

    With Livingston Taylor.

    Tickets on sale May 1, 2019.

  • Wednesday, August 14th

    Ridgefield Playhouse, Ridgefield, CT

    Ridgefield Playhouse

    Ridgefield, CT

    Phone: 203-438-5795

    Visit the venue's website

    With Livingston Taylor.

[full tour dates list]

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