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Tom's Diner - Suzanne Vega

Tom's Diner

Solitude Standing
female vocalists 80s pop singer-songwriter suzanne vega


"Tom's Diner" is an a cappella pop song written in 1981 by American singer-songwriter Suzanne Vega. It was first released as a track on the January 1984 issue of Fast Folk Musical Magazine[1]. The first time it was featured on any of her own studio albums was as the first track of her own Solitude Standing album in 1987. It was not until the a cappella track was used as the basis for a popular remix by the British group The DNA Disciples, in 1990 that the song became a popular hit. The 1991 release Tom's Album includes the DNA version as well as cover versions by such artists as After One, (Chicago-based band) Canasta, and "Bingo Hand Job" (a/k/a R.E.M. and Billy Bragg). Karlheinz Brandenburg used a CD recording of "Tom's Diner" to assess and refine the MP3 compression algorithm. This song was chosen because of its nearly monophonic nature and wide spectral content, making it easier to hear imperfections in the compression format during playbacks. Some refer to Suzanne Vega as "The mother of MP3".


Suzanne Vega (born Suzanne Nadine Vega on 11 July 1959 in Santa Monica, California) is an American singer-songwriter noted for her eclectic folk-inspired music. Two of Vega's songs (both from her second album Solitude Standing, 1987) reached the top 10 of various international chart listings: " Luka" and "Tom's Diner". Though born in California, Vega has lived most of her life in New York City. There, she attended the High School of the Performing Arts (the school seen in the feature film musical Fame), where she studied modern dance. Show more ...

Tom's Diner - Suzanne Vega

I am sitting
In the morning
At the diner
On the corner

I am waiting
At the counter
For the man
To pour the coffee

And he fills it
Only halfway
And before
I even argue

He is looking
Out the window
At somebody
Coming in

"It is always
Nice to see you"
Says the man
Behind the counter

To the woman
Who has come in
She is shaking
Her umbrella

And I look
The other way
As they are kissing
Their hellos

I'm pretending
Not to see them
And Instead
I pour the milk

I open
Up the paper
There's a story
Of an actor

Who had died
While he was drinking
He was no one
I had heard of

And I'm turning
To the horoscope
And looking
For the funnies

When I'm feeling
Someone watching me
And so
I raise my head

There's a woman
On the outside
Looking inside
Does she see me?

No she does not
Really see me
Cause she sees
Her own reflection

And I'm trying
Not to notice
That she's hitching
Up her skirt

And while she's
Straightening her stockings
Her hair
Is getting wet

Oh, this rain
It will continue
Through the morning
As I'm listening

To the bells
Of the cathedral
I am thinking
Of your voice

And of the midnight picnic
Once upon a time
Before the rain began

I finish up my coffee
It's time to catch the train



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