MAINHATTAN SHUFFLE (©Words and Music by Paul F. Cowlan)

I have a love/hate relationship with Frankfurt am Main. A city of high-rise office blocks and international finance, I’ve heard it described as the most American town in Germany but its history goes back beyond Charlemagne and even Imper the affectionate nickname of ‘Mainhattan,’ and as it’s been the home-base of Gabriele and myself for almost fifteen years, why not a song for the ‘Ford of the Franks on the rolling river Main?’ (Actually, it’s really another song for Gabriele.)


I’ve never been an early riser. I’ve never worked from ‘nine to five.’
I’m no financial organizer, ‘stocks’ and ‘bonds’ and that hand-jive.
I meet my woman at the station. Sometimes I meet her off a plane.
It could be any situation; southern sunlight or northern rain,
but she knows I know she knows how to make me feel alright.

She can take it slow and lazy, but she can stir the water too.
Sometimes I think she’ll drive me crazy, and that’s the least that she might do!
She knows how much I love her. And she don’t even have to try.
I’m always thinking of her. Cross my heart and hope to die.
I know she knows I know how to make her feel alright.

Half the buildings in this city seem to be reaching for the sky,
but come down to the nitty-gritty and it’s money-money-money that gets you by.
Shiny cars and shady people go together very well.
And any dealer who’s half-asleep will never find a banker to pay his bills;
‘cos you know they hope you’ll go down without their wherewithal.

Shadows are falling on the river, lights are burning in the town
This winter weather makes you shiver. The wind gets up and the rain comes down.
It’s not the time for walking, it’s the time for staying home.
We won’t be doing too much talking; let me just disconnect that phone,

‘cos I know you know I know why you look so good tonight.