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Chasing Echoes

by Phil Henry

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brasherkid Great uptempo and optimistic songs very skillfully delivered Favorite track: Pompei.
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    16 song CD featuring photographs by Sarah Grandchamp

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    12" vinyl record edition of Chasing Echoes! Includes 10 songs, a liner note insert, and a download code for the extended 16 song album! Individually numbered.

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1.
Pompei 04:08
Here, beneath an August sky An angry mountain sleeps Where an ancient city died A cautious village keeps it watch We built this town on rock and ash On tourists’ cash, we make our home And we wonder how long A good thing can last And if one day, the world should wake And rain down fire on Pompei The gods would shake their heads and say I told you so I met a girl in Market Square Her eyes are smoke, her hair is fire And every smile’s a dare- To walk on a wire On the ruins of a broken heart We can start to heal, conceal the past Still, we wonder how long A good thing can last And if one day, the world should wake And rain down fire on Pompei The gods would shake their heads and say I told you so
2.
My parents met at Woodstock - Yes, they tell me all the time When they're talkin’ ‘bout their generation - I see the tears in their eyes “Three days of peace and love - The like you'll never know.” They say “I feel bad for you, son -Cause you missed the show. We sang along with Janis - And we danced to beat The Band When Santana called the tribe - We howled and clapped our hands We held each other in the rain - When the thunderstorm blew through And Sunday we were born again - When the sun rose on The Who You may rock and you may roll - Wear down the records, turn up the radio But you're chasing echoes from a time long ago Well I hate to tell you, honey - But you missed the show You see, our world was burning, Our brothers dying in the war In that void, we found a voice we never had before And on that farm, we dug down deep -To plant the seeds of love And feel the music rising up - Our revolution had begun You may rock and you may roll - Wear down the records, turn up the radio But you're chasing echoes from a time long ago Well I hate to tell you, honey - But you missed the show And now I'm at a club - And I'm waiting on the floor The house lights dim - The amps break in And I feel a mighty roar The sound is full of fury - And the crowd’s teeming through the hall And screaming all his pain is Cobain - In the center of it all We're staging our rebellion - And we're working out our rage I'm not sure what we’re fighting for - But it doesn't feel the same And as I watch him smash his axe -Like Jimi long ago I get the strangest feeling -Like I missed the show We may rock and we may roll -But it's a paler shade of somethingWe'll never really know Yes, we're chasing echoes from a time long ago And I hate to admit it, but we missed the show
3.
Ghost 05:10
Yes, I’ve been chasing down a ghost Round every corner of this cold New England coast What bothers me the most Is each time I came so close, I let him slip away Well, this old house, it has its sins A dusty attic to hold its secrets in I keep the door locked tight But I hear it knocking in the night It keeps me awake There was a time, I swear, the spirit moved in me My Olivetti taping out the words at phantom speed Till in a haze of cigarettes Maker’s Mark, and shame, and darkly held regret That ghost, he up and left And the longing in his stead It took the best of me. Yes, I’ve been chasing down a ghost The more I try, it seems, the more the feeling goes I still sit down to type But the words won’t come out right Have I nothing left to say? I take a walk to clear my head But all of my old haunts are taunting me instead Down at the corner store On the rack beside the door My paperbacks are on display There was a time, I swore, the stories came too fast The clacking of the keys were like a train bound to a track Now, walking north on State Route Five Blue minivan comes drifting to one side It strikes me from behind And as I’m clinging onto life, The ghost, beside me, laughs. Six weeks out, they send me home With pins and plaster casts to set my shattered bones I’m like a rusty gate Just creaking through the pain But the urge won’t go away I hobble to the study door Dust and loose leaf pages crumpled on the floor The Olivetti’s on the desk Just exactly how I left But nothing is the same You see, the ghost is there, I swear, he likes to hide Whispering just beyond the edges of my sight The ghost and I we make a pact I won’t look too hard, and maybe, he’ll come back I take some paper from the rack And I ring the carriage back Then I begin to write.
4.
There be monsters here -There be dark, dark skies - But darker, still, the life we leave behind When we see the shore - Our ragged eyes are wide - We hardly knew what we’d expect to find A statue in the harbor, she’s taller than a dream - And the cursing roar of the crowded streets More faces than we’d ever seen We are refugees - My daughter, Ruth, and me - And grateful, still, for shoes beneath our feet There are no streets of gold - But I’ve got promises to keep -And I’ll earn my wage each night at the factory Eight hours stamping leather - And the boots march down the line Keep working, but they keep coming - Keep your head down, and you’ll be fine THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS STANDING STILL - THE ROCKS WILL ROLL YOU DOWN THAT HILL AND WATER WILL WASH AWAY THE STONE THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS HOME SWEET HOME - FOR THE WRETCHED ONES WHO KNOW WHAT IT MEANS TO FEAR ‘CAUSE THERE BE MONSTERS -THERE BE MONSTERS HERE Well, you can sing it loud - That this is the land of the free - It’s not like that for folks like Ruth and me Cause we might dress like them - No, but we don’t look the same They shout at us and laugh, and they call us names But we sing, “Run, Rabbit, Run - Don’t give the farmer his fun THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS STANDING STILL - THE ROCKS WILL ROLL YOU DOWN THAT HILL AND WATER WILL WASH AWAY THE STONE THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS HOME SWEET HOME - FOR THE WRETCHED ONES WHO KNOW WHAT IT MEANS TO FEAR ‘CAUSE THERE BE MONSTERS -THERE BE MONSTERS HERE We are refugees - From Ireland and Spain And we ran from Poland when the Nazis came We are Haitian, Mexican, Syrian - And we ache for something more When we raft from Cuba to Miami’s shore There are those who’d close the border And those who’d turn their heads - This place was made from migrants’ hope Now we freeze in fear instead
5.
Meet me down by Town Line Road And we can go climb Up on the roof of the high school It’s summer now and the rules don’t apply to us It’s dark as far as we can see As if this whole world’s fast asleep And when you feel you might disappear I’ve got fireworks and beer We’ll raise a toast to summers past And strike a match Light it up, watch it go This bottle rocket’s gonna blow And burn the dark into the day And when the summer’s come and gone You’re back at school and you’re moving on You always knew what you would be Far from here, and far from me At times, it seems as bright as day A flash of sight that fades away All the noise and all the fear Keep on ringing in my ears But for one moment, I might see What’s left for me Light it up, watch it go This bottle rocket’s gonna blow And burn the dark into the day Scream out loud, or fall apart All we need is a little spark And we may never be the same May we never be the same
6.
What good is a song if no one will hear it Ringing clear in the morning's first light? And I wonder why the birds bother If you won't sing along What good is, what good is a song? What good is a heart drumming steady and strong If the longing won't make you believe You can be like the bird, flying free? All you need is a start What good is, what good is a heart? What good is music if you won't share it? What good is a life on the page? Take to the rooftops, take to the wire Take wing What good is a bird in a cage? What good is a song if no one will hear it Ringing clear in the morning's first light? And I wonder why the birds bother If you won't sing along What good is, what good is a song?
7.
8.
Leanne 04:38
She packs the car and takes off down the road Her paycheck cashed, it’s enough for gas and tolls She’s got a ticket for the show -A club date in Buffalo She can hardly wait, eight hours left to go Tonight, she’s front and center for the band She knows every word by heart, she’s their biggest fan And they’ll see her from the stage When they step to the mics to play And she’ll laugh out loud when they call her name - Leanne I wanna be - As free as Leanne And I wanna love just as honestly I wanna live today the best way that I can I learned that much from you - My sweet Leanne I see Leanne at the gate at JFK Where she somehow talks Thor’s Hammer through TSA She's on her way to go To Comic Con in San Diego And when she begs me to I change my flight and I follow And everywhere we go is a fantasy Of aliens and heroes from the screen And in her glory is Leanne She was always the biggest fan And I love the way she loves her way - Through the world I wanna be - As free as Leanne And I wanna love just as honestly I wanna live today the best way that I can I learned that much from you - My sweet Leanne And who's to say -Whose life isn’t real? Cause happy is as happy makes you feel Now I’m stuck here in the office, 10am And my thoughts keep wandering to Leanne again And I wonder what she’d say To see me waste the day away I can hardly wait, eight hours left to go
9.
It’s Saturday night at the Hot Sara - The mercury’s low and the moon is high So why don’t we go through the wind and the snow - Where the joint is jumpin’ and the gin is dry Cause it’s Saturday night AT THE HOT SARA -Saturday night AT THE HOT SARA So why don’t we go? - We can follow the glow of the sign A-well-a jeezum crow, now don’t we clean up nice? - You in your lacy dress And me in my flannel vest and tie - Cause the winter’s cold and hard as ice A night on the town sure would do us right - So if the car starts up, we’ll go out and dance tonight Cause it’s Saturday night AT THE HOT SARA - Saturday night AT THE HOT SARA So why don’t we go? - We can follow the glow of the sign A-well-a can’t you feel the winter melt away - The minute you hear the hail of the horns hollering Dans La Grande Foyer? - Feel the magic charm that evening air When we drift on up the marble stairs -And time turns back at the Hotel Saranac Cause it’s Saturday night AT THE HOT SARA - Saturday night AT THE HOT SARA So why don’t we go? - We can follow the glow of the sign? It’s Saturday night at the Hot Sara - The mercury’s low and the moon is high So why don’t we go through the wind and the snow - Where the joint is jumpin’ and the gin is dry Cause it’s Saturday night AT THE HOT SARA -Saturday night AT THE HOT SARA So why don’t we go? - We can follow the glow of the sign The Hot Sara tonight!
10.
25 Below 04:17
If it’s morning no one bothered tell the sky Air is frozen, the sun won’t bring itself to rise And January blew in strong The new year came, the old moved on And day by day, it’s all the same Except I’m still here, and you are gone On the news we’re drawn a frosty shade of blue The guy is smiling as only weathermen can do He’s telling us to stay at home But it’s drafty in this old house alone The engine turns, and so I’ll learn To hold my breath and bear the cold At twenty-five below At twenty-five below… At twenty-five below, this town is a crystal glass One wrong move and it will shatter, shatter But I want you to know I’m not as frail as that I will get through And I wonder if that matters to you The car is warm and the frost is finally melting down The sun is stretching, and it’s yawning And lighting up this town And driving now, I feel okay I’ve got so much left to do today I’m still missing you, but I will go on with living At twenty-five below At twenty-five below…
11.
Well, we stood out in the cold Late December in the parking lot To get into the show With a girl I hardly know We shivered as we waited And complained about the snow But she didn’t like the band And she didn’t want to hold my hand And I’d pretend that was alright But somewhere in the crowd that night The music strumming loud, I might have met you The woman who would one day be my wife Well, I wish I knew you then - Instead of wasting all my hope Time and time again - You’ve always kept me waiting but I don’t really mind Cause you were worth it in the end - I just wish I knew you then Oh, and here we are today Your high school yearbook's on the table And we turn another page There's that smile I'll always know Though the years have tumbled by Since Catholic school in Buffalo And those girls were cruel It's just the things that mean kids do But I know you worried every day But did you ever wonder, sometimes, Somewhere far away If I was waiting? Well, I was waiting And I wish I knew you then - To save you from each broken heart Time and time again - I know I kept you waiting But I’ll make it up to you - Cause you are worth it in the end I just wish I knew you then Well, I wish I knew you then - These years have been the good times Time and time again - You’ve always kept me waiting But I don’t mind ‘Cause you were worth it in the end Yes, we are worth it in the end I just wish I knew you then
12.
Another Monday morning At the corner corporate coffee shop I'm third in line and going nowhere Girls with boy names Serve up half-caf lattes with a smile It's Kyle, or Cameron, or Casey, I'm late again, so I don't really care I'm gonna quit my day job Walk right in and tear it up If I can get through this line some time today Girls with boy names Wave me in and ask me what I want What I want - What I want I just wanna say THIS IS THE LAST TIME, THE LAST TIME I LET YOU GET THE BEST OF ME CAUSE I EXPECTED SO MUCH MORE BY THIS TIME FOR THE FIRST TIME, I'M LOSING MY FAITH IN THE POSSIBILITIES THIS IS THE LAST TIME YOU GET THE BEST OF ME So this is just like my life Order up and step aside Breathe in slow and count to ten Cause we're all waiting for The promise of a settled score What I want - What I want Is to start all over again THIS IS THE LAST TIME, THE LAST TIME I LET YOU GET THE BEST OF ME CAUSE I EXPECTED SO MUCH MORE BY THIS TIME FOR THE FIRST TIME, I'M LOSING MY FAITH IN THE POSSIBILITIES THIS IS THE LAST TIME YOU GET THE BEST OF ME Those girls got all of the time in the world And I’ve got to keep on moving They’ve got all of the time in the world Those girls got all of the time in the world And I’ve got to keep on moving They’ve got all of the time in the world Another Tuesday morning At the corner corporate coffee shop I'm last in line, and I’m going nowhere
13.
I’m the best you ever seen Ain’t no one in my league Well the pins fall down at the very sight of me See this shirt was tailor-made For the King of Penny Lanes I’m the finest bowler north of Tennessee Yes, a hush rolls through the room When I pull out Betty Lou She’s sixteen pounds of polyester rage I shine her to a rock star gleam And every eye is trained on me When I raise her up and step before my lane KNOCK ‘EM DOWN - KNOCK ‘EM DOWN YOU’RE THE HAMMER OR THE NAIL YOU’RE THE GUTTER OR THE RAIL KNOCK ‘EM DOWN - KNOCK ‘EM DOWN, DOWN, DOWN KNOCK EVERY SINGLE ONE TO THE GROUND Well, I used to chase my bourbon down with Stroh’s Had a pretty little girl waiting back at home But I gave her up, and gave it all away For the perfect game A price I had to pay KNOCK ‘EM DOWN - KNOCK ‘EM DOWN YOU’RE THE HAMMER OR THE NAIL YOU’RE NOTHING IF YOU FAIL KNOCK ‘EM DOWN - KNOCK ‘EM DOWN, DOWN, DOWN KNOCK EVERY SINGLE ONE TO THE GROUND Behind me on the tube Is that businessman in blue He’s buying votes and calling people names And the chumps are lining up They just can’t get enough Well, sir, I roll this strike for you
14.
She's the mystery Three rows ahead of me The coolest girl I've ever seen Her hair is painted blue It's all that I can do To keep from staring And you never know What you don't know Till she gets up from her desk And printed on her chest In bold and cryptic text, it says “Stop Making Sense” I'm in love with the girl In the Talking Heads tee shirt She doesn't know I'm alive And in her eyes I see The secrets she could show me As she's singing “Once in a Lifetime” They teach you how to read And trigonometry What year they built the Berlin Wall But they never find a way To tell you what to say When the girl you love Walks past you in the hall And you never know What you don't know Till you find the record shop And there it is In bold and cryptic text, it says, “Stop Making Sense” I'm in love with the girl In the Talking Heads tee shirt She doesn't know I'm alive And in her eyes I see The secrets she could show me As she's singing “I got some Wild, Wild, Life” I put my headphones on - In the darkness of my room Bring the needle gently to the groove As the sound breaks in - I wonder if she’s listening And in my mind -A streak of light shines in… I'm in love with the girl In the Talking Heads tee shirt She doesn't know I'm alive And in her eyes I see The secrets she could show me As she's singing “Once in a Lifetime”
15.
How many times you gonna wake up in the dawn Lace your shiny shoes and put your makeup on? Sure enough, the sun’s goin’ up and down Sure enough, the sun Sure enough, the sun How many miles you gonna burn up in your car Wearin’ down the ruts in your hometown tar? Sure enough, the sun’ll never go that far Sure enough the sun But look up at the sky Every once in a while You’ll see the sun and moon collide Burning the day into the night And leaving you and I Underneath the shadow of the moon Everywhere you look, the kids are laughing on the lawn With their pin hole boxes and their glasses on Sure enough, the world’s gonna vanish in the dark Sure enough, the dark Sure enough, the dark You never were the kind to believe - SURE ENOUGH, SURE ENOUGH In the bigger world you could not see - SURE ENOUGH, SURE ENOUGH Get a head full of steam, and off you’d go - SURE ENOUGH, SURE ENOUGH But the older you get, the less you know And you look up at the sky Every once in a while You’ll see the sun and moon collide Burning the day into the night And leaving you and I Underneath the shadow of the moon How many times you gonna wake up in the dawn Lace your shiny shoes and put your makeup on? Sure enough, the sun’s goin’ up and down Sure enough, the sun Sure enough, the sun
16.
My momma gave me an Etch-A-Sketch when I was five The frame was red and the knobs were white And the silver screen, the most fascinating thing I had ever seen And momma, she sat me on her lap awhile And she showed me how to turn the dials Right before my eyes, lined in black and white Was a masterpiece! But all at once, she broke my heart She shook it hard and that work of art Was gone, gone! (Gone, gone!) I cried and cried and cried Oh, but momma sighed, You got to shake it up! - And then you start again Oh, momma, I’m never going back to school Gonna lock myself inside my room Oh, and here I’ll stay, I’m gonna sit and just draw all day On my Etch-A-Sketch I wanna make a world up inside this screen Where there are spaceships and heroes, and nobody’s mean I’m gonna chart this life, up and down, and left and right On my Etch-A-Sketch But momma smiled and shook her head She said, I know it's not easy being 10 Tomorrow's another day, Remember what I say: You got to shake it up! - And then you start again Now I grew me up to be a man And I got hopes and ambitions, etched in the sand A temporary plan, ‘cause now I understand What my momma said You got to shake it up! - And then you start again

about

Phil Henry’s new CD, Chasing Echoes, has me tapping my foot, dancing in my chair, or bringing me back to a time I’d long forgotten. My favorite? "Missed the Show" - a great tune about the younger generation missing Woodstock. Henry brings me back – to Woodstock – to yearning – to love - to life.
Chris McGill
WSPN, Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, NY

credits

released October 18, 2020

Produced, recorded, and mixed by Phil Henry

Additional engineering by:
Mitch Barron, Derek Burkins, Brendan Coyle, Krishna Guthrie, Zak Hampton, Lara Herscovitch, Jimmy Kalb, Jeff Kimball, Steve Latanision, Marcos Levy, Jay Mafale, Colin McCaffrey, Gary Moon, Aaron Nathans, Tom Neeson, George Nostrand, Max O'Rourke, Joe Plotts, Mark Ransom, Jeffrey Pepper Rodgers, and Michael G. Ronstadt

Mastered by Glenn Barratt at Morningstar Studios

All songs by Phil Henry except:
"Missed The Show" by Aaron Nathans and Phil Henry and
"California Stars" by Woody Guthrie, Jay Bennett, and Jeff Tweedy

Photography by Sarah Grandchamp

Great thanks to the following people, without whom this album would not exist:
Jeff Miller, Ray Agnew, Gary Moon, Mary Trerice and Karl Bissex, Barby Matthews, Derek Burkins, Kyle Hayden, Gary Meitrott at Drum Journeys of Earth, Jeff Santoro, Jay Ottaway, Peter Kramer, Peter Warrington, Chris McGill at WSPN, Meshach Tourigney at Mountain Music, John Henry, Amy Harris and Jim Merullo, J, C, and the Gang, Erik Balkey at Hudson Harding Music, "Uncle Dave" Tibbs at WEXP, Wayne and Kathy Krevetski, Rik Palieri, George Nostrand, Aaron Nathans, and for all her love and patience, Allison.

This album is dedicated to the creativity and practicality instilled in me by my parents, Mary Ellen and Lonnie Henry.

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Phil Henry Rutland, Vermont

Singer-songwriter Phil Henry exudes the skill of a craftsman and the authenticity of an artist. “…vivid lyrical imagery that captures the imagination.” (Seven Days, VT)

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