The Woods Are Burning

by Brian McGrath

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Eric Rothgeb
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Eric Rothgeb Great selection of songs by a talented Chicago artist. Authentic, catchy, and moody. Favorite track: Rustbelt Highway Vagabonds.
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1.
I walked into a den of wolves Never thought I'd see the light of day Feeling for me, bleeding for me Silence 'fore the sins One by one, I feel within Alive with burning rage You get right to the borderline Watch it fade away Billy Caldwell In the dark, of the black, in the old coal night I saw you once in the Indian lights Shhh...they can hear you Of course you'd break! What'd I tell you once? "The feeling just can't stay" Drink it down, fill it up A belly-full for the pain! See I had it once, I let it slip Won't happen again Billy Caldwell In the dark, of the black, in the old coal night I saw you once, den of wolves, in the Indian lights
2.
Old dead weather lost and gone, she says "Whether you're right, you're gonna be wrong" I'm not coming back, I ain't moving on, she says "Man keep singing the same tired song" Oh let me be, Lord let me be! Oh won't you cut me down and set me free? Or I'll set the woods on fire We make our beds How we love to lie, she says "The last thing to go is pride" Clean the blood, wipe your brow, she says "Yeah there's nothing we can do about it now" Oh, let me be, Lord let me be! Oh won't you cut me down or set me free? Or I'll set the woods on fire Piece by piece Life wears you down, she says "Rust to dust, buried in the ground" Them big ideas gone up in smoke, she says "Ain't life sad, ain't life a fuckin' joke!" On fire! We set the woods on fire Oh let me be, Lord, let me be! Won't you cut me down and set me free?
3.
I went alone to face the weather The rain kept comin', all the people hide Twelve hit the ground when the bells were ringing Look around then wonder why? Oh, this harsh land will take the light right from your eyes But I never live, I never die On a Sunday night they caught me stealing Across the river at the old town post And in the morning they roped me down Carried me away and they hung me high Oh! How that last moment just drifted on forever It was a long time coming A long time coming I dreamt I lost you among the hemlock pines And for three nights I searched far and wide And I found your body in mangled sin Along the banks of the Kuskokwim And though this dream was just a dream It felt much more than real I never woke, I never feel I never woke, I never feel
4.
We were young and dumb and on the run Like rustbelt highway vagabonds Them drunken nights never set us free Always less than you think and more than you need Well I'm sometimes sunshine, sometimes shade Sometimes a sea storm pulling you beneath my waves But that ain't me, that ain't me, that ain't me no more I walk that straight and narrow right to your door... Sometimes Want the house, the kids, want the van in the driveway All them toys on the floor in the middle of the hallway Two bottles of red when the kids go sleep It numbs my mind, but hell it hurts to think Oh sometimes sunshine, sometimes shade Sometimes a sea storm pulling you beneath my waves But that ain't me, that ain't me, that ain't me no more I walk that straight and narrow right to your door... Sometimes Well folks they move and times must change But still this life of ours is defined by pain And like some raven flying with a broken wing We fall back to Earth while hero gets hanged Well I'm sometimes sunshine, sometimes shade Sometimes a sea storm pulling you beneath my waves But that ain't me, that ain't me, that ain't me no more I walk that straight and narrow right to your door... Sometimes
5.
Second Wind 03:08
I've been low for a long, long time But they don't know I lost my mind Booze and smokes gonna set me free Not what I want, just what I need I just can't catch my second wind No, I just can't catch my second wind These things I've done, the life I lead The folks I know just watch me bleed What I love most, oh gets ripped away Now she's a ghost and I'm to blame I just can't catch my second wind No, I just can't catch my second wind I've been low for a long, long time But they don't know I've lost my mind
6.
Fever Dreams 04:26
Chimney smoke in the dirty ether I speak these words, my hands raised to God A mournful cry and I must wander for you still In these badlands I'm ordained to crawl Fever dreams Comfort me, comfort me! In the light of the midnight sun Fever dreams Come for me, come for me Oh my God, what have you done? Among the dead trees I can feel you with me now Emerald eyes the jewels of a devil's soul I spend my life beholden to your troubled love With a wicked grin I'm devoured whole Fever dreams Comfort me, comfort me! In the light of the midnight sun Fever dreams Come for me, come for me Oh my God, what have you done? Fever dreams! The wind it whispers Breathes out my name I must move through the pain I live among, I live within my fallen gods I live in fear that I'll never awake
7.
I was waiting for something, I was waiting to hear you sing Waiting for a reason, for a sign, so it seems Waiting for the future and all good things to come Fleeting little moments belonging to the young Everything unspoken, all the day’s we’d yet to be Anything remotely true to that which made us free When the hope of youth is born to sad uncertainty Mourning all the years we’d yet to clearly see Love it comes and goes Time it kills us slow Kills us slow Still I wait for something, still I wait to hear you sing Waiting for an answer, still waiting to be free Hoping for the future and all good things to come Fleeting little moments belonging to the young But love it comes and goes Time it kills us slow It kills us slow
8.
Well there's a wild wind a blowin' I've been hiding away for years Spend your whole life a runnin' Oh, just runnin' from the fear There's a cold night comin' I've been tryin' to find my feet Spend your whole life a runnin' Yeah just runnin' away from me Quit your bawlin' now, got you under my thumb There'll be peace enough when endings come You can't live your life lookin' at the floor Cause I need more I need more In the stillness of the mournin' In a hope that never comes In the sadness of forgetting Just where it is you belong My mind is a petty thief Steals me blind, leaves me in grief You're a stranger now, but I know you still Only in dreams Only in dreams

about

"The woods are burning boys. Can't you understand? There's a big blaze going on all around" - Willy Loman from 'Death of a Salesman'

Cover image in the public domain, titled "Caterpillar tractor with grader widening the roadway of the Alcan Highway" by Office of War Information. Overseas Picture Division. Washington Division; 1944.
commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Alcan_construction.jpg

credits

released March 2, 2018

Words, Music, Performance by Brian McGrath.
Recorded, Mixed and Mastered by Brian McGrath.
©2017 Brian McGrath

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Brian McGrath Chicago, Illinois

Brian McGrath is an Indie Folk Songwriter in Chicago.

With an intense, honest conviction tempered by Chicago sensibility and grit, the big man with a big voice tells tales of broken characters, desolate landscapes, and fleeting redemption all along the road connecting Chicago and the Northwoods. ... more

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