Suzanne Vega and her 1987 track Tom's Diner taken from her excellent second album Solitude Standing (seldom off my record player)
In 1990, two British producers under the name DNA remixed Vega's track, with thrilling results for the covers album Tom's Album the following year
Some facts about the track; it's considered 'the mother of the MP3' as it was the test track used by Karlheinz Brandenburg, the developer of the MP3.
The song was originally released for the Jan 1984 issue of Fast Folk Musical Magazine.
The song was written while sitting at (and indeed is about) Tom's Restaurant, a diner on the corner of Broadway and 112th Street in New York City.
The diner behind the song
Jerry Seinfeld and George Costanza chew the fat at Monk's
The 'bells of the cathedral' referenced in the lyric are those of the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine, located one block to the east.
The song is based on a comment by Vega's friend Brian Rose, a photographer, who mentioned that in his work, he sometimes felt as if "he saw his whole life through a pane of glass, like he was the witness to a lot of things, but was never really involved in them."
The song was an exercise in her attempting to think and write in this fashion (including form a male perspective)
Just one of Rose's photograph's documenting New York in the early 1980s
William Holden in Sabrina
They even go so far as to check the weather for the day itself, which was 'overcast' as opposed to 'rainy', though Vega has subsequently admitted to artistic licence and writing a composite of events for the song.