virtualubbock - Lyrics: Martha

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by Cary Swinney

Good Ol' Sunday Mornin'; Seventh of September;
Neanderthal Man; Letter to Alaska; Mr. Guilt;
They Don't Serve Barbecue in HellJoey, Abdul & Me;
Martha, Our Son's Insane; The Bike Ride
Johnson Grass Farm; Twelve Januarys


Good Ol' Sunday Mornin'
Good ol' Sunday mornin'
we hopped inside a Ford

Off to our father's, father's church
to get ourselves some more

I guess it's bound to happen
ducks all in a row

Oh they dunk ya down, 'til ya think you've drowned
then they tell ya all ya need to know

Good ol'
Sunday mornin'
Greasy bacon
eggs are fried
Put the pot roast
in the oven
Slick your hair down
go eat some humble pie

A puzzled child is starin'
from a red crushed velvet pew

Out the window of the Sweet Street Church of Christ
was such a lovely view

I guess it's me who's crazy
for I never understood

How hellfire and damnation
could be so doggone good


Does your clergy have an ego?
Are there things he's tried to hide?

You know he likes when people listen
oh he's never told a lie

Though the answers he's been given
are like an educated guess

They'll get you next to nothin'
when faith's put to the test


... Oh - Good ol'
Sunday mornin'
Bees are buzzin'
and so am I
Put the bird food
in the feeder
Honey, let your hair down
Let’s fly

Let’s fly

Lloyd Maines-lap steel guitar
Doug Smith-piano
Mark Philbrick-Hammond organ
Cary Swinney-vocal, acoustic guitar

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Seventh of September
A tribute
It's the seventh of September
a visionary time

And I have come back from the future
I've come to see what once was mine

It's a solitary journey
when you're a ghost of rock-n-roll

And though my own hometown now claims me
they will never have my soul

So they gather in West Texas
you know, the place I chose to leave

Where they've encased my black rimmed glasses
I just stare in disbelief

You see for years I was forgotten
but now I am their favorite son

And on my birthday in September
they take the money and they run - see them run

I hear crickets in the evenin'
I wipe the sweat off of my brow

In a garage on thirty-seventh
 it's an illusion to me now,

Ain't it funny how things happen?
I mean once you're dead 'n gone

Seems now everybody knew me - and loved me
young and old now sing my songs

And Santiago smells the money
I should've seen that all along

Her new alliances with commerce - her lawsuits
my songs... my songs

I was once a young musician
a song writer, so they say

And though an aeroplane did take me
it seems I never fade away - not fade away

Lloyd Maines-pedal steel guitar
Cary Swinney-vocal, acoustic guitar

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Neanderthal Man
Oh once upon a time there was
a clumsy little kind of Neanderthal Man

With his stick in his hand
his, stick, in his hand

His woman was a hairy-legged stocky
lookin' kind of firewood gatherin' thing

And the firewood she'd bring
would make him feel, like a king

Many moons did come up and many suns
did go down when a wheel rolled by

Much to their surprise
forever changed our lives

And then the markets arrived and they
learned to survive by trading beads

Sat around and drank twig tea
from a tea twig tree

With their beads all exchanged they would
count up their things and head back to their caves

And compare what they'd made
with the Jones'

Soon a woman would learn how her body could
earn a few beads to be worn

But this profession was scorned
when the righteous were born

By three thousand and three deaf and
blind could now see that the righteous were dumb

They'd sunk to that proverbial rung
no longer played folks like a drum

Many people had died yet politicians still lied and
gave speeches downtown

Screamed and stomped at the ground
but no one came -

You see, intelligence thrived and the
righteous did die or went away, and stayed gone

Leaving we creatures alone
to grow this garden

Oh once upon a time there was a
clumsy little kind of Neanderthal, Man

Richard Bowden-fiddle
Brian McRae-bass, percussion
Gary Thomason-acoustic lead guitar
Curtis Peoples-acoustic lead guitar
Cary Swinney-vocal, acoustic guitar, whistle

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Letter to Alaska (The Ballad of Roy Pigg)
Thanks, Terry
Greetings to you
from the lower forty-eight

Where the building of prisons
is what make us so great

Where a junior high child
might blow you away

If ya happen to smile
at the child the wrong way

And ain't it nice that we're free
where ya have to be brave

To keep a nine inch TV
from making you its slave

Well I went down to Quitaque
but you weren't around

I stopped by your Cafe
they told me you could be found

Restin' now with your mother
some six foot below

All dressed up for supper
but nowhere to go

I didn't know - I, didn't know
I didn't know - I, didn't know

Cary Swinney-vocal, piano

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Mr. Guilt
Mr. Guilt
is this lunatic in robes

Who pounds on The Book
for a dime

He calls you friend
as he's pandering your soul

And expects you to close your mind
Are you blind?

Mr. Guilt
comes in many shapes and forms

Concealed 'neath his veil of fear
He reminds you immortality's on the line

And the price you could pay
is severe - he's a racketeer

I wish that I
was a flying bird
high above the ground

A free-flight feathered voyager
in the land.
Mr. Guilt had not yet found

You -
may feel that you are free

But free my friend
you're not

Mr. Guilt
has knelt down to pray

And tangled us up in knots
with indoctrination,
sweet indoctrination

Cary Swinney-vocal, acoustic guitar

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They Don't Serve Barbecue In Hell
It could happen
On the eighth day
God created a Texas bar and grill

He invited all his closest Gods
for the very first meal

He said, "Let's not tell ol' Adam & Eve,
you know those two will squeal,"

They kept it, under their halos,
and then agreed, to the deal

Joseph learned the two-step
oh he danced it oh-so-well

He over-dosed on country music
and fell

And the sweet sweet sound of steel guitars
and fiddles filled the air

Coyote dogs and old bull frogs just stopped -
and stared

While the unborn child named Jesus
danced with Mary
Long before ol' long hair
parted the sea
Smoke from Barbecue
soon swept the prairie
But there was no one there to smell -
the smell
And they don’t serve barbecue -
In hell

Miles and time will rob you blind
Yes, along came an Indian

God got scared - he wasn't prepared
so he packed it in

But he left behind a smoke-stack shrine
and a dog on a lid-closed-grill

He just left it - smokin',
and it's there - still


Richard Bowden-fiddle, mandolin
Lloyd Maines-pedal steel guitar
Brian McRae-bass
Cary Swinney-vocal, acoustic guitar

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Joey, Abdul and Me
Joey reads the Torah
on an old stone road downtown

In the middle of Jerusalem
where the black robes drag the ground

Where on Sunday he's a soldier
he's a shooter for the man

He stands guard down on the border
and protects his promised land

But there are no wise men present
there are none left to be found

Just a couple of back seat drivers
tryin to make their way downtown

Ol' Abdul is a man from Lebanon
who likes to hang out on the streets

He says hooray for gay old Palestine
and he's fast upon his feet

Where with afternoon comes boredom
so he gathers up some stones

And he creeps down to the border
and sneaks a peek around that zone

And he watches for the cameras
and when they begin to roll

He pulls his scarf up to his eyeballs
rares his arm back and starts to throw

Nowadays no one is distracted
by the presence of the sun

The simple beauty, of the universe
I guess there's fighting to be done

To me - it feels a little foreign
to me - it's hard to comprehend

That some five thousand odd years later
that same war has yet to end

It's like waitin' for the buzzards
‘cause ya know they're gonna come

It's like lookin' past some Nazi railroad track
to the same Jerusalem

So I sit beside this bar ditch
and watch you Lubbockites roll by

With my pencil and my paper
and my sandwich by my side

And I write about dissension
in a far and foreign land

Another pampered North American
who truly does not understand

But I admire my rusty Chevy
on a starry afternoon

She's a three-on-the-tree, I do believe
a nineteen-seventy, Malibu
she's a beauty

Richard Bowden-mandolin, fiddle
Brian McRae-bass, percussion
Steve Cooper-pennywhistle
Gary Thomason-electric guitar
Cary Swinney-vocal, acoustic guitar

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Martha, Our Son's Insane
Martha our son's insane
I think the poor boy's lost his brain

He musta thrown it out the window
with the dust from the rug

'Cause he don't listen to one damn thing
he never hears a word I say

I try to teach him right from wrong
and the boy just shrugs

Oh, Martha, our son he's insane
I think the peer pressure
done smoked away his brain
Lord, what are we gonna do
when the time comes for me and you
to throw our twenty-four-year-old child
out in the rain... Martha, what are we gonna do?

You know the tempers
have flared a round
It's time
to turn the rock music down
Our beady-eyed flower-child boy
has got to change

He appears to stand as a man
his childish mind is forever at hand
Why must I feel defeated and ashamed?


You know the time is gonna come
which came sooner - for some
Payment for this lifestyle
is overdue

And Martha, you'll begin to cry
you'll feel old, and wonder why

You can't treat men as children
for the sake of youth


Brian McRae-bass, drums
Gary Thomason-baritone rhythm guitar, electric lead guitar
Mark Philbrick-Hammond organ
Cary Swinney-vocal, acoustic guitar

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The Bike Ride
I took my bike out for a ride
on the lower southeast side

Where a young man should not ride
or come 'a goin'

The bluebonnets were in bloom
on a Texas afternoon

A mockingbird sang out a tune
for those who'll listen

People sleepin' in the streets of downtown Dallas
amidst the sound of Sunday's church bell afternoon
And I wonder sometimes, when they might come to
their minds
and a revolution shall ensue
I'm bettin' that a bloody revolution shall ensue

The propaganda just appears
in some TV ad for beer
But it does not show the fear
that we are hiding

Another touchdown from a run
another helmet comes undone
To show the world our toothless gums
and two gold earrings

Was nothing truly learned from Martin Luther King?
I guess all that civil rights stuff was a dream

Now our new prisons grow more full with angry citizens
and the rest of us are numbers in the game
I guess the rest of us are numbers in the game

It's so hard to define,
what is yours and what is mine
for with these nationalistic minds
we're surely crippled

We're spoon-fed through our TVs,
where our so-called enemies
are pointed out to you and me
like answered riddles

Is it no mystery to anyone that they're lying?
Even the old men down at the pool hall say that's true

And I wonder sometimes, when they might come to
their minds
and a revolution shall ensue
I'm bettin' that a bloody revolution shall I ensue

Brian McRae-bass, lead guitar
Doug Smith-piano
Cary Swinney-vocal, classical guitar intro, acoustic guitar

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Johnson Grass Farm
To that spirit of freedom, innocence
and independence in all of us

I'm gonna live on marijuana
and I ain't gonna work at all

I'm gonna find me a house in the country
and grow that shit 'bout ten feet tall

I'm gonna plant, alongside Johnson Grass
which I pray grows, a little taller

If ya slide by the house -
and the lights are out -
you will hear me hoop 'n holler

Lord Jesus, I'm stoned
ain’t doin' nobody no wrong

Doin' a little bit 'a
front porch thinkin'
some star-studded dreamin'
and singin' those gospel songs

Ain’t doin' nobody no harm
livin' on a Johnson Grass farm
I'm not guilty
of a crime
I'm just havin' me a time
and waitin' on the harvest to come

When the sun, in the evenin'
slowly slithers down
You will find me in my backyard
diggin' them plants up outta the ground

Naked as a newborn baby
and carefree as your local bum
Down on my hands 'n knees
prayin' for a rain shower to come


Robin Griffin-acoustic lead guitar
Wally Moyers-dobro
Jay Hataway- bass
Lloyd Maines-mandolin
Cary Swinney-vocal, acoustic guitar

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Twelve Januarys
Well the wind did blow
and the snow did blow
in January

But our beds were warm
and our feet were too

So put some cinnamon
in my coffee
and some butter on my bread

And I'll make up a song
for you

Well we've been scrutinized
and criticized -
and still we never married

But I'm still here
and you are too

So put tradition
in the cupboard
close and latch the door

And I'll make up a song
for you

Oh Dear, it's been twelve Januarys
since I first laid my hands on your boobs

Guess I'll never know why
you stay with a guy

Who's such a fast-paced
slow-witted fool

Cary Swinney-vocal, acoustic guitar

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Copyright 2002
Chris Oglesby
All rights reserved

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