A Powerful New Song From Bonnie Raitt: “Down the Hall”

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“Down The Hall” by Bonnie Raitt from her new album, Just Like That…
Available now in all formats!
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Credits: Produced by Bonnie Raitt
Recorded and Mixed by Ryan Freeland

Bonnie: vocal, acoustic guitar
Glenn Patscha: hammond B3


DOWN THE HALL
(Bonnie Raitt)

Had the flu in the prison infirmary
My last day I looked up and saw
A man wheeled round the corner
Down to skin and bones that’s all

I asked the nurse where he was goin’
She said ‘hospice down the hall.,
He prob’ly won’t be in there long
Any day we’ll get the call’

I asked if they let family in
She said ‘not really at the end
Truth is, a lot don’t have someone
No friends or next of kin’

The thought of those guys goin’ out alone
It hit me somewhere deep
I asked could I go sit with ‘em
For some comfort and relief?

Next thing you know, I’m on the ward
Doin’ things you can’t believe
Like shavin’ Julio’s bony head
Crackin’ him up when I wash his feet

I used to run when I saw Tyrone
Knowin’ your place’s what it’s all about
Now he’s here doubled up in pain
Cancer eatin’ him from the inside out

I sit and wait outside his stall
To help him when he’s done
Whatever shame we might have felt,
Well, all that’s come undone

I can’t undo the wrong I did
Give back the life I took
But maybe when it comes my turn
I’ll get a second look

I don’t know ‘bout religion
I only know what I see
And in the end when I hold their hand
It’s both of us set free

© 2022 Open Secret Music (ASCAP) administered by Bluewater Music Services Corp. Used by Permission. All Rights Reserved.

Many thanks to writer Suleika Jaouad, photographer Katy Grannan, those working in The California Medical Facility prison hospice program and NYT Magazine for the article (published May 16, 2018) that inspired this song. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to organizations that support humane prison hospice programs around the country.

Music video by Bonnie Raitt performing Down the Hall (Official Lyric Video.) © 2022 Redwing Records, LLC. Distributed by ADA.

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Last updated: 2021-06-05 2:51 pm PDT
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