Live Free (Tour EP 2011)

by Franz Nicolay

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1.
When life gives you lemons Rub them in the open wounds of your enemies To each of us according to the amount that we can bleed To each according to his greed You used to believe that with age you would become less unhappy When you had real reasons to be sad When you were younger, your suffering was inconsolable 'Cause it seemed unfounded, uncontrollable But tonight I'm going to cut off all my hair And wipe my bank account clean Void all the contracts I'd vowed to keep Let's run away together, you and me And by tomorrow morning let's live free Stumps at the lakefront, like beasts at the water hole It’s our own personal dust bowl We rise, each morning, as far as I can tell Searching for water from a deeper well How are you at love, art, and crime? Three for three, if you ask me It's a living wage Being St. Sebastian of the short stage I'll take upon myself the slings & arrows aimed at other singers If you'll be high-bidder, I'll be a bell-ringer You be come-hither, I'll be a ditch-digger You be long-limber, I'll be a tale-spinner Trickster & swindler Scribbler & scriv'ner Shimmering silver & high-gauge June and Johnny for the modern age Tonight I'm going to cut off all my hair And wipe my bank account clean Break all the promises I vowed to keep Close your eyes and floor it, man, no guarantee We'll see our way clear to live free Stumps at the lakefront, like beasts at the water hole It’s our own personal dust bowl We rise, each morning, as far as I can tell Searching for water from a deeper well Suck in your gut, blow out your voice Go home, as if you've got the choice Take a shot and smooth your shirt Whatever you do, don't get hurt These are high seas Pull yourself together, man, and live free I believe it, and I've found it to be true You can stay one step ahead of the problems that oppress you I believe it, and I've found it to be true You can stay one step ahead of your problems I believe it, and I've found it to be true I can outrun any one of you.
2.
Trees are cannibals They eat their own Turn the hearts of oak and bark to loam And limestone Poor forked radish Feet set in bone Concentrate on things you've left unfinished And unknown. Be of good heart. Our songs will all be silenced. So what? We'll go on singing. Put out the pilot light And gather up the bottles The beer will trace the hollows The remnants of the waters Of Frankie Stubbs' tears You make forgetting look like fun Standing out there with your coat undone The centerpiece of the mise-en-scene set in the setting sun Sight unseen, you could be anyone The light in your hair and your hands in your jeans You could be anyone CHORUS These are the ways These are the ways we remember This is the passage of life through our minds This is a memory, a weakening pearl in a chain This is how mysteries form on a grain of sand Fear is an animal That feeds alone Remembered once in haste and once in calm CHORUS
3.
Betty Botter bought a bottle of bitters from the bar Major Matt, he mixed his mild martinis in a jar This doggerel is my private hell, these words whose meanings never gel I'm gonna find you, wherever you are Never trust a man without a horror story Eros, the rose and the sore The hearts of Boston lie for me The hearts of Boston have a hurricane to answer for If I started walking I'd be almost there by now I'm on the world stage From the Tel Aviv swamp to the deserts of New Orleans You can't read your lines if you can't find your page In my rage and shame I cursed "Bad god, no offerings" I'm a magi with bad apologies No scented candles, no shiny things Never trust a man without a horror story Eros, the rose and the sore The hearts of Boston, they lie for me The hearts of Boston have a hurricane to answer for Life never labels the last time you do something I swear, I can always do more i've taken enough charity already And the last thing I need is once more to lose something I drove to your door in a dusty Honda Or an orange Saab, or an Austrian Mazda I don't mind being wrong as long as long as no-one else is right The hopes and fears of all the years are here with us tonight Never trust a man without a horror story Eros, the rose and the sore The hearts of Boston, they cry for me The hearts of Boston have a hurricane to answer for Life never labels the last time you do something I swear, I can always do more i've taken enough charity already And the last thing I need is once more to lose something It was action-packed in the cul-de-sac the dust blew forward and the dust blew back You and I were under attack With a parachute bag for a burlap sack 'Cause you required some danger So I acquired a gun You married a stranger All I could do was run, run, run You required the danger I acquired a gun You married a stranger All I could do was run Ten years of hard labor is a hard time But fifty years of disappointment is a hard time too I met a man who got his 5-year-old a Bocephus tattoo It got out of his hands, and this got out of mine too When you required some danger And I acquired a gun You married a stranger All I could do was run, run, run You required the danger So I acquired a gun Transpired was anger Then all we were was done Never trust a man without a horror story Eros, the rose and the sore The hearts of Boston are terrified for me The hearts of Boston have a hurricane to answer for Life never labels the last time you do something I swear, I can always do more i've taken enough of your charity already And the last thing I need is once more to lose something Which is the right life? The quiet life or the night life? If Cole Porter didn't know, how can I be sure? The hearts of Boston are gonna lie for me 'Cause the hearts of Boston have a hurricane to answer for.
4.
I put on a record It was called "Sad Songs For Sullen Lovers" I listened to it once It took me all day to recover I put on a record It was called "Sad Songs for Savage Lovers" Called you up, Told you what I thought And then I ran for cover I put on a record Called "Dirty Songs For Sad Lovers" It wasn't long before you called And said "Please, please come over And tell me Did your broken heart make you who you are?" I put on a record It said "Love me once, then leave forever" We are so pure We can learn both joy and rage together You took off the record And said "What's your rush? As if things won't break in their own time Without you there to push them Forget about the record Forget about the song Let's concentrate on what we got right And what we're still doing wrong." Did your broken heart make you who you are? You are capable of anything, aren't you? You learned it from someone Someone learned it from you Cruelty is a virus I know, it's in my blood too You think you know someone But you never know what they will do Did your broken heart make you who you are? Can your broken heart tell me more about who you are? Then tell me all about it If your broken heart can tell me more about who you are Then go ahead, tell me all about it.
5.
The Dutch talked of Antilles As if it was Atlantis Lonely & constant Have you had your fill of this? Sing the Northwest Passage The tidepools and the tundra Feel your way through the darkness Take wing, take cover The Cape of Good Hope to the point of no return River-blind & sunburned Dream all night of beauty Never wake up beauti- Full up on all-night diner food Just keeping cool Stalk these streets Shimmering & bloodless & happy Call cops cowboys, & cowboys cops Take capsules of jungle weeds Processed for purity The tide approaches & the tide recedes Bake the coral & drown the weeds Hide the bodies & count your beads Drop the anchor, chart your deeds. I will follow wherever you go Diamond lanes and levee roads Past the green-dot sunset On the Berlin-to-Baghdad railroad The cuckoo is a pretty bird, warbles as she flies Bar your windows to her Hide your eyes Let nothing come between you Hold her in your sights Keep a close watch Don't turn out the lights The fishing bird makes a dome with his wings Shelter from the sun for the shiny things Who take his good graces, then are speared where they sit Sic semper fidelis The buffalo herd make a run for the hills Fresh kills, common law Nature red in tooth and claw Thus spake the faithless Faded foam filling that was gnawed by the crow Bluebells bloom in the barn below Drain the egg, drop the shells in the snow Some stories are endless I will follow wherever you go Diamond lanes and levee roads Past the green-dot sunset On the Berlin-to-Baghdad railroad
6.

about

Limited edition EP created for November/December 2011 UK tour.

credits

released November 18, 2011

#1-5 by Franz Nicolay. #6 by Warren Zevon. #1 recorded in Brooklyn by Franz Nicolay. #2, 6 recorded in London by Markus Barnard. #3-5 recorded live at Railroad Playhouse, Newburgh NY 7/28/11 by West West Side Music, mixed by John DeLorme. Mastered by Alan Douches at West West Side Music. Cover design by Ariana Nicolay.

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To us, the beautiful - and to those who disagree, may their eyes fall out.

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