Promises

Little known fact:  I own every Cranberries album.  Don’t know exactly why, as I’ve never been a die-hard Cranberries fan, and I’ve also never been one to frivolously purchase music.  I’ve always been extremely selective with the records I’ve purchased over the years, and yet, whenever the Cranberries came out with a new album, I always managed to rush out and buy it post haste.

So today I’m sharing my favorite Cranberries track, Promises, in memory of Dolores O’Riordan.  It’s not the best Cranberries song (that nod should probably go to “Dreams” or “Ode to My Family” or “Zombie” or hell, even “Linger”) yet it’s still a kick-ass tune with brutally humanistic lyrics (this time about divorce) in keeping with the best Cranberries tunes.  R.I.P., Dolores.

You better believe I’m coming–
You better believe what I say…
You better hold on to your promises,
Because you bet you’ll get what you deserve.
She’s going to leave him over,
She’s gonna take her love away–
So much for your eternal vows, well,
It does not matter anyway.

Why can’t you stay here awhile?
Stay here awhile?
Stay with me?

Oh, all the promises we made,
All the meaningless and empty words
I prayed, prayed, prayed!
Oh, all the promises we broke…
All the meaningless and empty words
I spoke, spoke, spoke!

Do-do-do, do-do-do,
Do-do-do, do-do-do

What of all the things that you taught me?
What of all the things that you’d say?
What of all your prophetic preaching?
You’re just throwing it all away.
Maybe we should burn the house down,
Have ourselves another fight,
Leave the cobwebs in the closet,
‘Cause tearing them out is just not right.

Why can’t you stay here awhile?
Stay here awhile?
Stay with me, oh oh!

Oh, all the promises we made,
All the meaningless and empty words
I prayed, prayed, prayed!
Oh, all the promises we broke…
All the meaningless and empty words
I spoke, spoke, spoke!

Oh eh, oh eh, oh eh,
Oh eh, oh eh [Repeat]

Do-do-do
Do-do-do
Do-do-do
Do-do-do

(apologies to Dolores and The Cranberries)

Time to Move On

My favorite Tom Petty song from my favorite Tom Petty album. Enjoy.

It’s time to move on, it’s time to get going
What lies ahead, I have no way of knowing
But under my feet, baby, grass is growing
It’s time to move on, it’s time to get going
 
Broken skyline, movin’ through the airport
She’s an honest defector
Conscientious objector
Now her own protector
 
Broken skyline, which way to love land
Which way to something better
Which way to forgiveness
Which way do I go
 
It’s time to move on, time to get going
What lies ahead, I have no way of knowing
But under my feet, baby, grass is growing
It’s time to move on, it’s time to get going

Sometime later, getting the words wrong
Wasting the meaning and losing the rhyme
Nauseous adrenalin
Like breakin’ up a dogfight
Like a deer in the headlights
Frozen in real time
I’m losing my mind
 
It’s time to move on, time to get going
What lies ahead, I have no way of knowing
But under my feet, baby, grass is growing
It’s time to move on, it’s time to get going

(R.I.P. Tom Petty)

Like The Weather

The color of the sky as far as I can see is coal gray
I lift my head from the pillow and then fall again
I get a shiver in my bones just thinking about the weather
A quiver in my lip as if I might cry

And by the force of will my lungs are filled and so I breathe
Lately it seems this big bed is where I never leave
I get a shiver in my bones just thinking about the weather
A quiver in my voice as I cry

What a cold and rainy day…
Where on earth is the sun hid away?

I hear the sound of a noon bell chime, well I’m far behind
you put in ’bout half a day while here I lie
With a shiver in my bones just thinking about the weather
A quiver in my voice as if I might cry

What a cold and rainy day…
Where on earth is the sun hid away?

Do I need someone here to scold me?
Or do I need someone who’ll grab and pull me out of
Four poster, dull torpor pulling downward

For it’s such a long time since my better days
I say my prayers nightly, this will pass away

The color of the sky is gray as I can see through the blinds
Lift my head from the pillow and then fall again
I get a shiver in my bones just thinking about the weather
A quiver in my voice as if I might cry

A cold and rainy day…
Where on earth is the sun hid away?

A cold and rainy day…
I shiver, quiver, and try to wake

(apologies to 10,000 Maniacs)

 

 

Close to Me

Close to Me

I’ve waited hours for this–
I’ve made myself so sick–
I wish I’d stayed asleep today.
I never thought that this day would end–
I never thought tonight could ever be
This close to me.

Just try to see in the dark–
Just try to make it work.
To feel the fear before you’re here,
I make the shapes come much too close–
I pull my eyes out,
Hold my breath,
And wait until I shake.

But if I had your faith,
Then I could make it safe and clean–
If only I was sure
That my head on the door was a dream.

I’ve waited hours for this,
I’ve made myself so sick–
I wish I’d stayed asleep today.
I never thought that this day would end,
I never thought tonight could ever be
This close to me.

But if I had your face,
I could make it safe and clean.
If only I was sure,
That my head on the door
Was a dream.

(apologies to Robert Smith and The Cure)

Incinerate

Incinerate

I ripped your heart out from your chest,
Replaced it with a grenade blast.

Incinerate [repeat]

The firefighters hose me down–
I don’t care I’ll burn out anyhow.
It’s 4 alarm girl nothing to see…
Hear the sirens come for me.
You doused my soul with gasoline–
You flicked a match into my brain.

Incinerate [repeat]

The firefighters are so nice.
I remember you so cooolllllld as ice.
Now flames are licking at your feet–
Sirens come to put me out of misery.
You wave your torch into my eyes–
Flamethrower lover burnin’ mind.

Incinerate [repeat]

(apologies to Sonic Youth)

Reason to Believe

Revisited this ol’ ditty tonight for reasons unknown to anyone (including myself) and must’ve listened to it seven or eight times before I realized that it’s way past my bed time.  Such a sad, sad song, but so sweet and sincere, too.   Arguably one of the best songs ever written, by Mr. Tim Hardin, but recorded and re-recorded by so many others.  The version I’m highlighting in this post is Johnny Cash’s rendition of the tune circa 1975.

Reason to Believe

If I listened long enough to you,
I’d find a way to believe that it’s all true.
Knowing that you lied straight-faced while I cried–
Still I look to find a reason to believe…

Someone like you makes it hard to live without
Somebody else.
Someone like you makes it easy to give,
Never thinkin’ of myself…

If I gave you time to change my mind,
I’d find a way to leave the past behind.
Knowing that you lied straight-faced while I cried–
Still I look to find a reason to believe…

If I listened long enough to you,
I’d find a way to believe that it’s all true.
Knowing that you lied straight-faced while I cried–
Still I look to find a reason to believe…

-Tim Hardin

Seasons (Waiting on You)

I’m almost ashamed to admit that it was my 70-year-old father who told me about this band.  Usually when he tells me about a band, it’s someone he heard on NPR, and let’s face it– NPR is not (nor should it ever be) the arbiter of good taste in music, especially new music.  Anyway, my father saw these guys on Letterman and told me to check ’em out.  So I did, and this single (from their appropriately titled album “Singles”) quickly became my new favorite song.  The music and lyrics are hauntingly beautiful, and the video is just as captivating as the music (maybe more so for me, as the scenery is reminiscent of the rural moments of my childhood).  When I watch the video, I am just as homesick for those lost years of my youth as I am envious of the love shared between the country couple featured.

After watching the official music video below, feel free to check out the live Letterman performance here, but be warned that the lead singer’s growling Marlon Brando-esque performance is pretty intense and might not be everyone’s cup of tea.

Seasons change,
and I tried hard just to soften you.
Seasons change,
but I’ve grown tired of trying to change for you.

‘Cause I’ve been waiting on you…
I’ve been waiting on you.
‘Cause I’ve been waiting on you…
I’ve been waiting on you.

As it breaks, the summer will wake,
but the winter will wash what is left of the taste.
As it breaks, the summer will warm,
but the winter will crave what is gone…
will crave what has all… gone away.

People change, you know,
but some people never do.

You know when people change,
they gain a piece, but they lose one, too.

‘Cause I’ve been hanging on you–
I’ve been waiting on you.
‘Cause I’ve been waiting on you–
I’ve been hanging on you.

As it breaks, the summer will wake,
but the winter will wash what is left of the taste.
As it breaks, the summer will warm,
but the winter will crave what is gone…
will crave what is gone…
will crave what has all… gone away… 

‘Cause I’ve been waiting on you.

Suite: Judy Blue Eyes

Stephen Stills wrote this tune for sweet blue-eyed Judy Collins as their relationship was falling apart, and it remains one of the most tender and heartbreakingly beautiful songs ever recorded.

Had this ditty stuck in my head and just felt like sharin’.

It’s getting to the point where I’m no fun anymore
(I am sorry)
Sometimes it hurts so badly I must cry out loud
(I am lonely)
I am yours, you are mine, you are what you are
You make it hard
Remember what we’ve said and done and felt about each other
(Oh, babe have mercy)
Don’t let the past remind us of what we are not now
(I am not dreaming)
I am yours, you are mine, you are what you are
You make it hard

Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh
Tearing yourself away from me now you are free
And I am crying
This does not mean I don’t love you I do that’s forever
Yes and for always
I am yours, you are mine, you are what you are
You make it hard
Something inside is telling me that I’ve got your secret
Are you still listening?
Fear is the lock and laughter the key to your heart
And I love you
I am yours, you are mine, you are what you are
You make it hard
And you make it hard
And you make it hard
And you make it hard

Friday evening
Sunday in the afternoon
What have you got to lose?
Tuesday morning
Please be gone I’m tired of you
What have you got to lose?
Can I tell it like it is? (Help me I’m sufferin’)
Listen to me baby
It’s my heart that’s a sufferin’ it’s a dyin’ (Help me I’m dyin’)
And that’s what I have to lose (To lose)
I’ve got an answer
I’m going to fly away
What have I got to lose?
Will you come see me
Thursdays and Saturdays?
What have you got to lose?

Chestnut brown canary
Ruby throated sparrow
Sing a song, don’t be long
Thrill me to the marrow

Voices of the angels
Ring around the moonlight
Asking me said she so free
How can you catch the sparrow?

Lacy lilting leery
Losing love lamenting
Change my life, make it right
Be my lady

Sing Me Back Home (R.I.P., Hag)

[NOTE:  I set out to write this post yesterday, but I was so damned sad that I couldn’t do it, so I decided to postpone it until tomorrow.  Well, tomorrow is here, and I’m still so goddamned depressed that I don’t want to write it, but if I don’t write it now, I never will, so here goes– I’m gonna’ keep it short and sweet.]

Merle-Haggard

One of the all-time greats, Merle Haggard, died on his 79th birthday yesterday.  The Hag had always been a musical hero of mine (second only to Johnny Cash) and truth be told, there are very few singer/songwriters (country or otherwise) who could hold a candle to him.

Speaking of birthdays, the best birthday present I ever received was for my thirtieth a few years ago.  Merle Haggard happened to be playing a show in Branson, Missouri, of all places, on the day after my birthday, and my brother bought me a ticket.  So he and I (and our respective exes) braved the bullshit of Branson in order to see our musical hero perform.  It was a great show, and I’ll never forget the experience.

Strangely enough, I’ve had a Merle Haggard CD stuck in my car stereo for the last couple of weeks.  Well, not stuck, exactly– I just haven’t felt the need to switch it out with anything else.  I reckon I’m gonna’ have to soon, because it’s a sure bet that I’m gonna’ cry every time I hear “Sing Me Back Home” from this point on.

Nobody could sing a song quite like the Hag, and nobody could write a song quite like him, either.  There are roughly seven-and-a-half billion people on this earth, and not one of them will ever be able to emulate both the pathos in his lyrics and the sincerity in his timbre.  The world lost one of the best its ever seen, and so I’d like to share this live performance of one of my favorite songs, performed roughly the same time I got to see him in concert:

 

The warden led a prisoner down the hallway to his doom,
and I stood up to say good-bye like all the rest.
And I heard him tell the warden just before he reached my cell,
“Let my guitar-playing friend do my request.
Let him sing me back home with a song I used to hear–
make my old memories come alive…
take me away and turn back the years…
sing me back home before I die.”
I recall last Sunday morning a choir from off the streets
came to sing a few old gospel songs.
And I heard him tell the singers,
“There’s a song my mama sang…

could I hear it once before we move along?
Sing me back home, with a song I used to hear,
make my old memories come alive…
take me away and turn back the years…
sing me back home before I die…
sing me back home before I die.”