Nashville Demos

by OJR

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credits

released 05 May 2015

All songs written and performed by Oliver John-Rodgers, with the help of...

Jason Andrews: Accordion on "Missin' Sweet Paris on a Rainy Day"

Merc Bo: Piano/organ on "Lips on Fire"; vocals/handclaps on "Front-Door Man"

Logan Coats: Guitar on "Sad Pony"

Francis Coke: Vocals/organ on "Sad Pony"; vocals/percussion on "Front-Door Man"

Abbey Ray: Piano on "Runnin' from the Law," "I Cry," "Fisher of Men," and "Missin' Sweet Paris on a Rainy Day"

Trevor Rock: Guitar on “Numb," “Lips on Fire," and "Missin' Sweet Paris on a Rainy Day"

Kevin Sabik: Trumpet on “Runnin’ from the Law”

Allie Summers: Violin on “Runnin’ from the Law, “Fisher of Men,” and “My Generation”; flute on “My Generation”

Andrew "Jafar" Vilar: Guitar on "I Cry," "My Generation," and “Lips on Fire"

Jackson Ward: Guitar on “Runnin’ from the Law”

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All songs home-recorded in bedrooms in New York, London, Paris, Nashville, and Virginia.

Mastered by Andy Wildrick in Nashville, TN.

Album cover photographed by Kar Zano.

The Nashville Demos are dedicated to Sonia Stringer, Stacey Pickering, Olivia Rose Murphy, Alec Hanefeld, Jeanne Dever's, Amelia Jenkins, Patrick Putman, Pierre Flipo, Quentin Duesser, Augustin Prevost, Tommaso Zuffa, Clara Martin, Nick Larsen/Erasmus Crew, Chaz "The Chazmanian Devil" Phillips, Daniel Blackman, Felix Read, and the rest of the kind souls abroad who've shown me human style. I am an American traveler in your arms, and you take good care.

Peace, love, rock, roll,
OJR

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Track Name: Numb
Everybody always tellin' me
That it don’t do me no good
To try to fix what is broken
They say there ain’t no use in splintered wood
Everyone, they try and tell me
“You don’t know nothin'--you’re only 21”
Well aw sorry, man
I didn’t know you’d gotten so cynical
Don’t blame your age for makin' you numb

You’re so numb

Let me tell you ‘bout last night
I was postin’ up round, you know
The old neighborhood bar
I got to talkin’ to a girl named Katherine, with an accent
She brought with her from somewhere far
She said, “Aw, boy, you’re so young!
Why don’t you go travel some?
Go sleep a night in another country’s bed”
I said, “Hey, Kat
You know, it seems that
You got the right idea
I’m tired of the food I’ve been fed”

But I’m not numb

I’m sick of everybody always tellin’ me
How empathy don’t do business any good
They might as well say,
"Hey, boy, you shouldn’t give your extra bread to the homeless
Outside the Bowery Mission in your own neighborhood”
I'm fed up with everybody always tellin' me
I don’t know nothin’ ‘cause I’m "too young"
When the only thing they’ve learned in their 35 years of living
Is to fight the urge to trust anyone

(Come on, son… That’s no fun!)

You’re so numb
Track Name: Runnin' from the Law
Pack all your things
And turn off the lights
I’ll fill up the tank, babe
We’re leavin’ tonight
We’re gonna do this thing right
We’re gonna live that old outlaw life
You got yer feet up on the dashboard
Yer hand down in my lap
We’re gunnin' for the wide road
Got no need for maps
This new paint job
Gonna take us there at last

Now we’re runnin’ from the law
Drivin’ southbound fast
Now we’re runnin’ from the law
With our cash in the bags
Now we’re runnin’ from the law

And mama...
Ain’t no turnin’ back!

If we make it down to Texas
We can hide out till June
I got a friend in Gun Barrel City
Who sleeps in his boots
He’ll let us drown out the blues
Out there, in the shine of the old moon
I can hear the wolves howl loud!
I can hear the sirens roar!
Keep my ring on your thin finger
Till we fall to the floor
Mama, love is our judge
And death our only court

Now we’re runnin’ from the law
Drivin’ southbound fast
Now we’re runnin’ from the law
With our cash in the bags
Now we’re runnin’ from the law

And mama...
Ain’t no turnin’ back!

[Spoken]
La señorita and I made it down round
Near the free edge of México
Pushin’ 130, pressin’ hard
Shootin’ hot toward Nuevo Laredo
Till some gangbangin’ boys in blue caught up
They was flyin’ fresh outta San Antone
Now, my lady done got a bad eye
So I’m drunk as a skunk on the road
We go racin’ to our graves
Singin’ 'long to the radio
Mister George Jones croons low
When just then
I hear a heavy bullet hit home

Now I’m runnin’ from the law
Drivin’ straight to hell fast
Now I’m runnin’ from the law
With our cash in the bags
We went runnin’ from the law

And mama
...She never turned back
Track Name: Sad Pony
What’s it gonna take
To get you out my business… man?
What’s it gonna take
To get you off my back?
I don’t cut my hair
I wear high-heeled shoes
When I wake up in the mornin’
It’s true that it’s two in the afternoon
What does that have anything to do with you?

You ride a sad pony
I’m gonna get you fired, boy
You’re so fired!

I see you go standin' there
With your nice hair and your ice glare
Lookin' like you got some wild place to be
’Til I show up on the scene
I mean, hey, you know me
I’m just lookin' for a free place to pee
You say, "How 'bout I stand behind you, do some voodoo
Before the three blue doors, and ask you a few questions?"
I say, “Hey, man, what’s with all the hecklin' and the pressurin’?
I’m just tryin' to spread the freshness of love and peace"
But

You ride a sad pony
Ahh!

Last night I was hanging out late down round, you know
Some dirty ol’ backwoods karaoke bar
Now I gotta admit I was drinkin’ a bit hard
But only ‘cause the village clown drove off to downtown with my car
When just then, in the crowd, a big man, too damn loud
Starts a-whoopin’ and a-hollerin’ up at me
He said, “Would ya look at this big-city, Axl Rose wannabe
Soccer-loving brat in his faggy lil' skinny jeans”
Now I don’t mean to be mean, man
Really, it ain’t much my scene
But allow me, please, to say this one thing:
That meathead fool was balder than a baby Mr. Clean
I think it’s HE who’s got the bad genes!
‘Cause

He rides a sad pony
And his
Father rides a sad pony
And his
Lord rides a sad pony
And sometimes
The whole world rides a sad pony
Track Name: I Cry
Leave me at the window
Blowin’ smoke onto the street
Thinkin’ deep in summer heat
About the things that I did see
In a month in this sweet city
Like a four-week-long pipedream
Pass me the wine
I’m feelin’ whiney, so it seems

That I must cry
Oh, I cry
For tonight I leave Paris
Et ma blonde cherie behind
And so I cry

I leave you at the station
I lay my letter in your hands
It says I’ll phone you come round August
When I’m back from pretty lands
I’m your dirty old American
In a ramblin’ rock & roll band
And now I hit the rails
And say au revoir to France

But I must cry
Oh, I cry
For tonight I leave Paris
Et ma blonde cherie behind
And so I cry
Oh, I cry
Now I’m bound for Italy
With great tears in my blue eyes

You’re my long-legged lady
And your tongue is sharp
I’m gonna miss you so dearly
When I’m travelin’ so far
Please hold me till the evenin’
When my train is set to part
It breaks my heart, it breaks my heart
Track Name: In Love with a Bowler
Just the other night
In the light
You was lookin’ so nice
You was there on my right
You was gunnin’ fer strikes
You was fixin’ to kill ‘em
To knock ‘em all down
You’re the queen around town
I’m a gutterball clown

I’m in love with a bowler
And I hardly know her
Yeah, she think I’m crazy
I bet she think I’m crazy

Please shout me your sweet name
Across this polished wooden lane
I wish you’d come and dance with me
Aw, but I’m just a big old turkey
Gobble gobble, mama!

I’m in love with a bowler
And I hardly know her
Yeah, she think I’m crazy
I bet she think I’m crazy

Now you’re shakin' to the Allman Brothers Band
You got your Bud Light in your left hand
You got your camouflage, huntin’ hat on
And you’re the one, you’re the one
Won’t you sit upon my knees?
I wanna make you my sweet company
You’re my southern belle with balls
You got it all, mama
You got it all!

I’m in love with a bowler
And I hardly know her
Yeah, she think I’m crazy
I bet she think I’m crazy
Track Name: Fisher of Men
I didn’t know the cold verdict
You’d cast upon me
When I limped my way to the bar
I didn’t realize you’d be cuttin'
Me loose so early
’Til you shook me off of your line
You shake 'em all off, all the time

‘Cause you’re a Fisher of Men
Now, Pretty Swiss Hippie
You got one again
You’re a Fisher of Men
And that’s fine
That’s fine

I shoulda known swimmin’ in your sea
I’d bite the hook to taste a kiss
If you let me try again, I won’t miss
I shoulda known swimmin’ in your sea
You’d fry yourself a bigger fish
You curl your tongue and shake your hips
While your Gypsy Cat licks her lips

‘Cause you’re a Fisher of Men
Now, Pretty Swiss Hippie
You got one again
You’re a Fisher of Men
And that’s fine
That’s fine

The words she gave to me
Early one morning:
“I fought the fickle face of fate"
"I'm confused and selfish as of late"
"But I hope that you’ve been doin' great"
"And it’s not your fault you took the bait"

‘Cause I’m a Fisher of Men
Aw, Skinny Blond Hippie
I got one again
I’m a Fisher of Men
Is that fine?”
Yeah, that’s fine

We had fun, kid
Track Name: My Generation
I don’t wanna be a part
Of my generation
Aw, man, the frustration
When they force me to be
And I don’t wanna live
Inside my phone’s screen
Hey, man, do you know what I mean?
Hey, kid, do you know what I mean?
I’m talkin’ that old-fashioned livin’

Take me back
Take me back to 1964
I think
Oo I think I’d like it more

I don’t wanna be a part
Of this selfie situation
Aw, but I’m a part of the equation
And I don’t wish to be
I wanna let my freak flag fly
I wanna boogie and get high
I wanna wash the world in light
Talkin’ a little peace and love, that’s right
Hey, don’t that sound so nice?

Take me back
Take me back to 1964
I think
Oo I think I’d like it more

I don’t wanna be a part
Of my generation!
But it’s just the situation
I guess there ain’t no use in complainin’
I’m just sayin’
I can’t seem to fit all my thoughts into one hundred forty
Characters, oh no!
Or some emoji
Do you even know me, man?
I’m a little lonely man
That’s it, that’s it!

Take me back
Take me back to 1964
I think
Oo I think I’d like it more
Track Name: Lips on Fire
Mama rule the heavens
With her pink tongue
Got smoke in her eye
But says she don’t feel nothin’
She ask for a drag
And always ends up bummin’
Mama, oh, mama
She got the sun a-scorchin’
Through her gold skin
She bought sunglasses
Then she couldn’t pay her rent
I don’t wanna be
The Sun Goddess’ Kid

I just wanna
Just wanna feel somethin’
And taste the sun
On your lips

Come on, baby
Just dive into these good vibes
You look like Betty Draper
With your lips
Lips on fire
Can we get higher?

Mama in the hot seat
‘Cause she make the big boys blush
My flesh go wild
When she talk her makeup
She grab for somethin’
And I feel Her Holy Touch
But Mama, oh, Mama
It ain’t too much

Come on, baby
Just dive into these good vibes
You look like Betty Draper
With your lips
Lips on fire
Can we get higher?

Mama in my dream
Just a-dancin’ on my car
In New Orleans
We pay a dame to flip our cards
I got The Fool
And Springsteen got The Star

Ain’t that so hard?
To know all your cards?
And miss the sun
On Mama’s lips?

I wanna boogie with you
It’s you, Ma
Track Name: Missin' Sweet Paris on a Rainy Day
No hope
I’m lost in some old French town
Tryin’ to ride thumb
To Berlin from Calais
The truckers, they just laugh and pass
So merry on their way
Now I’m missin’ sweet Paris on a rainy day

Lungs choked
In bed in Barcelona
My mates ask
I say that I’m okay
The doctor, when he hears my heart
He tells me it’s in pain
Now I’m missin’ sweet Paris on a rainy day

You think you know it
’Til you’re sleepin’ in a park
You think you know it
’Til they’re stealin’ your guitar
You think you’re lonely
’Til you’re half a world away
And you’re missin’ sweet Paris on a rainy day

Clothes soaked
I cry on Curry Mile
Beat down
Defeated in dismay
The Manc boys, they heckle me
And send me far astray
Now I’m missin’ sweet Paris on a rainy day

You think you know it
’Til you’re sleepin’ in a park
You think you know it
’Til they’re stealin’ your guitar
You think you’re lonely
’Til you’re half a world away
And you’re missin’ sweet Paris on a rainy day

Dead broke
I’m stuck in Southeast London
Locked out
Beneath clouds so dark and gray
I call Jeanne just to talk
Although, I don’t have much to say
Just that I’m missin’ sweet Paris on a rainy day
Track Name: Front-Door Man
My lady got a secret
She keep from me every night
When I’m away for ten hours a day
There’s another dog pleasin’ my wife
My lady done got a dark secret
And she hide it from her hard-workin’ man
I plead, “Mama, no more!"
On this killin’ floor
I get home and hear my backdoor slam

So don’t tell me
That you love me
If I’m your Front-Door Man

My lady got a secret
She keep ‘neath our four-poster bed
When I go away fourteen hours a day
She make lemon juice run down his leg
My lady done got a dark secret
And she hide it from her hard-workin’ man
I plead, “Mama, no more!"
On this killin’ floor
I get home and hear my backdoor slam

So don’t tell me
That you love me
If I’m your Front-Door Man