(words and music by Rick Springfield)          

Who did you think you were? 
Who did you think you were fooling? 
You've been seeing too many movies 
Where the bad guys were the heroes 

Everything started fine 
And it looked like the seeds were sown 
'Til you took up an evil stance and you came on just like Al Capone 
I had to leave or I'd have gone insane 
Now I hear they say you've changed but

Old gangsters never die 
Old gangsters never die 
Don't you ever wonder why

You had me when I was green 
It made me feel so dependent 
It satisfied your paranoia to think that  I really needed you 
Who did you think I was
Did you think that I'd let it ride
Put down that violin case, 
I know just what you're trying to hide 

I've got to leave you chill me to the marrow 
There's just no way you're on the straight and narrow because
Old gangsters never die 
Old gangsters never die 
Don't you ever wonder why

And when I finally climbed down off your shelf
You blamed everyone except yourself

Old gangsters never die 
Old gangsters never die 
They just fade into the night 
Oh, bye-bye

(total playing time: 3:05 )

Song Facts: This can be found on Wait for Night. 

According to US

If I had to pick a song to skip from WFN, it'd be this one. I don't know exactly what it is, or why it is that I have no feelings for this song. But I don't. I can take it or leave it. Which means that I usually don't skip this one when listening to WFN, but if it wasn't there I wouldn't miss it.

So, in an attempt to find something to talk about on this song, I find myself questioning a few things. Firstly, where in the heck does Rick find these women? I know I've asked this question before (but no one seems to know the answer). But gee, they seem prevalent in his music. So then I got to thinking, maybe it's just the same one he's writing about over and over - it's just a re-hashed story set to a different beat. She broke his heart so bad that he just can't get over it. Was it Linda Blair?? <shudder>

Secondly, I'm thinking (feeling?) that the Gangster references must've been fresh in Rick's mind when he sat down to pen this one. Considering The Godfather was released in 1972, and it's sequel in 1974 - the mob was *in* so to speak. So was Rick trying to cash in on that? Or did he just watch a movie and felt the need to vent some more about this aforementioned chick? Hmmm....

On to the music. This definitely has a pretty good beat/rhythm to it. I find that my leg is usually bouncing, or at least my toe is tapping while this one is playing. So I crossed off "don't like the music" from my list of what it is that I don't like about this song.

So, it must be the lyrics then, right? Is it because this is "same shit, different song" that I go "eh" about this one? The typical lyrical content we are accustomed to seeing/hearing from Rick is there. "everything started fine and it looked like the seeds were sown" and "it satisfied your paranoia to think that I really needed you" Yep. Sounds like Springfield there. There ya go, it's not the words then. Crossed that one off the list also.

Now that I've gone completely in circles in a crazy attempt to really pick apart this song, I find I'm even more confused than when I started. So, to make myself even more wacko, I started thinking that this one could use a remake. If you take these lyrics, re-title it "Old Gangstas Never Die" and set it to a rap beat - Michelle P.

I get the impression that I am in the minority on this song, but I like it. 

Wrath/Anger is how I define this one on the Seven Sins scale. The whole gangster mentality is one of excessive violence, overkill, and tantrums turning bloody, so the idea of linking this with the sin of anger is not too far fetched in my mind.

I admit I like gangster films, the 20s, art deco – I love The Godfather, Goodfellas, Harlem Nights, flappers, and bad, illegal gin (kidding about the gin) – so it is almost a given that when you mix Rick with 20’s Gangster stuff I am gonna like it! But specifically, I like the following lyrics …

“I had to leave or I’d have gone insane”…been there, done that, and I relate to that on a visceral level. Who hasn’t been in a situation where staying meant certain mental failure? I find myself shouting that line when it comes around ;-)

“It satisfied your paranoia to think that I really needed you.” I love this – it is such a polite way of saying, “Bite Me!” I love it when Rick hurls insults without bringing himself down to a childish level. And again, been there…Ever had a friend who made you feel as if they were doing you a big favor by being your friend…this just explains that phenomena so eloquently. 

“I’ve got to leave, you chill me to the marrow.” I LOVE THIS LINE. Okay – so using bodily fluids in a song without being filthy earns huge points in my book, so basically, on this song, he had me at marrow. But beyond that, I again connect with this. Recently I have seen things from people I trusted that literally made me shiver with revulsion – and that, I think, is what this line is all about. To me it is about looking at someone for the first time without the blinders on and finding the monster that you should have seen all along.

I really like, connect, enjoy, and appreciate this song. And, again, I confess, I think I’ll end up in hell if I keep liking it so much. It really puts me in touch with my own deadly sin of anger. The final line…”when you climbed down off your shelf, you blamed everyone except yourself…” I like that line TOO much, perhaps, as it makes me really want to bitch slap someone and then high five Rick – LOL!

This is absolutely one of my favorites on Wait for Night!!! Two thumbs up with brass knuckles and a Tommy gun! - Anna C.

I really don't like this song very much, but lyrically it is somewhat interesting.  He seems to be a little bitter over a relationship where he felt very used.
I find it interesting the way he uses some clichés, but does a twist on the more common saying - Old Gangsters never die as opposed to a zebra never changes it's stripe, or you can't teach a dog new tricks. Chilled me to the "marrow" instead of chilled me to the bone. And climbed down off your shelf, I've never heard it put that way, instead of high horse, or pedestal. I do think it was quite poetic to kind of keep the expression but change the word to make a little different in order to make it rhyme. - rlh