I think Inside Out is one of the 2 most congenial efforts by the Traveling Wilburys from their 2 albums. It might not reach the heights of Orbison’s solo contribution of You’re Not Alone or Dylan’s Tweeter and the Monkey Man, but as a group this and Handle Me With Care are their best collaborative songs for mine. The song is playful, humorous and expertly written and delivered. These songs appeal to a wide audience base because they incorporate so many genres of music and are appealing to even the most novice afficionado (ie a younger music audience).
Look out your window
That grass ain’t green
It’s kinda yellow
See what I mean?
Look up your chimney
The sky ain’t blue
It’s kinda yellow
You know it’s true
It’s so hard to figure what it’s all about
When your outside’s in (Inside out)
Inside Out was written by all 4 members of the band and was the first they worked on for the Vol 3. Traveling Wilburys record. The song was issued as a promotional single in the United States, where it peaked at number 16 on Billboard‘s chart. Following the death of Roy Orbison in December 1988, the group gathered at a private house they dubbed “Camp Wilbury“, in Bel Air, Los Angeles. George Harrison recalled that he, Tom Petty, Jeff Lynne and Bob Dylan had the musical part of the song finished “within an hour” of starting work. He said this encouraged him to realise that the band would be able to continue as before, despite the loss of Orbison.
Bob or Tom came up with the idea: “Look out your window, the grass ain’t green …” and I said, “It’s kinda yellow …” then somebody else said, “See what I mean?” So then we got the next bit: “Look up your chimney, the sky ain’t blue, it’s kinda yellow …”
I’m not normally a fan of how ‘bridges‘ sound in songs, but George hit the ball out of the park in this song. Just spectacular music.
1. Inside Out (Traveling Wilburys song)