The Ballad of Bully Bob

Composed and performed by Steve Hansen Smythe
Lyrics by I. H. Smythe

This song was inspired by Billy Bob Thornton's bizarre interview on CBC.

Listen to my performance on YouTube
or see Serge Soucy's version

At Easter time, 2009, Bully Bob rode into town,
A big-time Oscar-winning star, of fame and world renown.
He came to sing and whack his drums and grace us with his wit,
On the airwaves of the CBC — and that's when trouble hit.
For the host of Q, our boy Jian, began his interview,
By putting into context facts the world already knew.
Bully Bob just rolled his eyes, but Jian's gaze was steady,
As he asked a bunch of questions you would never ask Tom Petty.

Oh Bully Bobby Thornton, we don't know what drugs you're on,
Cause nobody, but nobody, messes with Jian.

First Jian asked about the band, and when it came to be,
“I don't know what you're talkin' about,” said Bully mulishly.
“Well what did you listen to as a kid?” asked Jian, ever keen,
Bully Bob said, “I subscribed to a monster magazine.”
So Jian asked, “Are you reacting to the fact I said you act?”
And Bully Bob said, “You're instructed not to talk about things like that.”
Then Bully moped and sulked and was deliberately obtuse,
Till Jian asked politely, “Please... can't we call a truce?”

Oh Bully Bobby Thornton you don't smoke inside the lines,
Still nobody, but nobody, gives Jian a hard time.

‘Cause Jian is our hero and his star is on the rise,
With his eloquence and class and his Arabian princess eyes.
He's ethnic and he's earnest, he's Canadian to the brim,
You've not apologized to us till you've apologized... to him

The interview got stranger still when Bully Bob observed,
“These here Canadian audiences are awfully reserved.
Usually our audiences throw things while we play,
But here they sort of sit there, no matter what you say.
It's very, um,” said Bully Bob, his eyes a little crazy,
“Well,” he said, “It's mashed potatoes... with no gravy.”
And Jian our defender kept his cool and didn't yell,
He simply said, “Oh yeah? Well we've got gravy here as well.”

Oh Bully Bobby Thornton you got run right out of town,
You can't mess with Ghomeshi without thunder raining down.
We'll chase you with our mounties, with our bikers and our navy,
With our guns full of potatoes and our cannons...full of gravy.

Get along little Bully.
He said he had the flu — oh he flew all right. Yee ha!
Hey, Bully Bob — we're gonna turn you into human poutine.
You give hillbillies a bad name, you know that?
Once he was the king of vain,
Now he eats humble pie.

-I. H. Smythe, April 2009