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The Joker

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The Joker
Steve Miller Band
The Joker
The Joker
RaitingSR
Supervision Recommended
Information
Released 1973
Genre Classic Rock
Language English
Source Rock Band Track Pack: Classic Rock
Available May 19, 2009 (Pack)
(DLC)
Playable in
Rock Band
Rock Band 2
Rock Band 3
Rock Band Blitz
Difficulty
Band 1FcircleUFCirlceUFCirlceUFCirlceUFCirlce
Basic Pro
Guitar 2FcircleFcircleUFCirlceUFCirlceUFCirlce NoNo Part
Bass 2FcircleFcircleUFCirlceUFCirlceUFCirlce NoNo Part
Drums 1FcircleUFCirlceUFCirlceUFCirlceUFCirlce 1FcircleUFCirlceUFCirlceUFCirlceUFCirlce
Keys NoNo Part NoNo Part
Vocals 1FcircleUFCirlceUFCirlceUFCirlceUFCirlce 1FcircleUFCirlceUFCirlceUFCirlceUFCirlce
Details
Male singer
2-part Harmonies



The Joker is a song by Steve Miller Band.

The line in this song, "I speak of the pompatus of love," has baffled listeners for some time. Greil Marcus provided the best explanation we've seen in a 2002 article for Los Angeles Magazine titled "In The Secret Country." The word "Pompatus" does exist in the Oxford English Dictionary, and it means "to act with pomp and splendor." Miller most likely heard the word on a song called "The Letter," which was recorded by the Los Angeles Doo-Wop group The Medallions in 1954. It was written by their lead singer Vernon Green, who was 16 at the time and crippled with polio.

The song contained these lyrics:

"Let me whisper sweet words of dismortality, and discuss the pompatus of love. Put it together and what do you have? Matrimony."

The Pompatus Of Love is the name of a 1995 movie starring Jon Cryer, and Cryer tracked down Vernon Green to ask him about these lyrics. Green defined "Dismortality" as "Words of such secrecy they could only be spoken to the one you loved" and "Pompatus" as "A secret paper-doll fantasy figure who would be my everything and bear my children."

The line, "Some people call me The Space Cowboy" is a reference to Miller's 1969 song "Space Cowboy." The line, "Some call me a gangster of love" is a reference to his song "Gangster of Love." The line, "Some people call me Maurice" is a reference to Miller's 1972 song "Enter Maurice." In that song Miller also sings about "The pompatus of love."(thanks, Patrick - Tallapoosa, GA)

Miller got the line at the end, "I really love your peaches want to shake your tree, lovey dovey, lovey dovey..." from "Lovey Dovey," a 1953 song by R&B group The Clovers.

Miller won a lawsuit against rap group The Geto Boys when they used this without his permission in 1990. In 2000, he let Shaggy use the bass line from this on his hit, "Angel." A year later, Miller let Run-DMC sample "Take The Money And Run."

The line "I'm a midnight toker" is a marijuana reference. Many stoners related to this song.

This finally hit #1 on the UK charts in 1990, thanks to its inclusion in a Levi's jeans commercial. (thanks, Brad Wind - Miami, FL)

In the TV show Friends, Joey has an imaginary friend named Maurice whose occupation is "Space Cowboy." (thanks, Patrick - Huntington, NY)

Homer sings this on an episode of The Simpsons.

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