If I Woke Up This Morning and Died

by Fred Gillen Jr

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1.
I Believe 03:30
I Believe I don’t believe in intentions we’ve all heard the cliche the road to hell leads nowhere and I don’t care how it’s paved I believe in you and me every great prayer begins with we we show up and we roll up our sleeves and that’s how the world changes I don’t believe in Karma there’s too much evil that goes unseen castes and classes, dogma and dharma or anything which comes between you and me I believe in you and me every great prayer begins with we we show up and we roll up our sleeves and that’s how the world changes I don’t believe in authority because anyone can be bought and all the trouble in the world comes from trying not to get caught I don’t believe in grace if I know I’m forgiven all I’ll do is sin I believe in looking down at my feet and feeling the dirt they’re standing in I believe in you and me every great prayer begins with we we show up and we roll up our sleeves and that’s how the world changes I believe…… in you and me I believe….. in you and me
2.
Katherine With a K blonder than the sun in my memory you stood six foot one turns out you were really kind of small but your voice rang like an orchestra Katherine with a K you said the night I asked your name I love you still and I’ll never be the same your vocabulary was legendary complicated, dirty, and literate you channelled Peggy Lee and Patti Smith fighting in an alley Katherine with a K you said the night I asked your name I love you still and I’ll never be the same it was 2 a.m. the night you learned I’d never tried escargot so you found an all night French cafe and we ate snails! Katherine with a K you said the night I asked your name I love you still and I’ll never be the same of all of my regrets you’re the most beautiful we were both smitten but when we met we weren’t free a world without you in it, so hard to contemplate I couldn’t believe it when I heard I saw a picture of you at eight years old and you looked just the same I always saw the child in the woman you became so filled with wonder
3.
The Eyes of the Buddha Namaste say the children out playing hand-built swing set rocking in the breeze namaste say the women out praying as you pass by a temple on a side street shining eyes, black as coal bright as the sun the eyes of the Buddha in everyone namaste in the wagging tails of dogs all around the dusty streets of Kathmandu namaste on the lips of many pilgrims climbing countless stairs up to Swayambu shining eyes, black as coal bright as the sun the eyes of the Buddha in everyone Namaste says the man delivering eggs stacked so high his bicycle is bending namaste says the cop directing traffic she looks tough even as she smiles shining eyes, black as coal bright as the sun the eyes of the Buddha in everyone Namaste underneath the bodhi tree tying strings attached to fragile wishes namaste sings the woman in the morning kneeling in the dust to wash her dishes
4.
A New Guitar 02:59
A New Guitar E B7 we’re going to need a new guitar A E one whose strings ring clear A B7 no buzzing frets, no sour chords E B7 just simple, true, and dear C#m A our songs will all be peaceful E B7 our harmony beautiful E A like the sun coming out E B7 after a storm we’re going to need a set of drums one that plays beats of the heart no need to be loud just play it strong and proud our songs will all be peaceful our harmony beautiful like the rain falling down after a drought we’re going to need a new piano player one who’s found the secret chord who fills the room like sweet perfume so strong it brings strangers to the door our songs will all be peaceful our harmony beautiful like a first snow falling down on Christmas morning we’re going to need a new guitar one whose strings ring clear
5.
If I Woke Up This Morning and Died Have I spilled out my life like water on the ground? Not looking back long enough to see it evaporated Did it mean anything or did it all add up to nothing? Have I wasted time with everything I thought counted? Given away everything until there’s nothing left Was what looked large simply just perspective? What happened to my life? If I woke up this morning and died would I remember anything except love? Walking around with my hands in my pockets Afraid to really touch anything I want to put my hands on everything so I stare straight ahead and keep walking What happened to my life? If I woke up this morning and died would I remember anything except love? Our days are numbered and paid for but we don’t get to see the receipt we don’t know when they’ll come to take us away so we do the best we can with too little information What happened to my life? If I woke up this morning and died would I remember anything except love?
6.
7.
Modern Times 04:15
Modern Times In a room in Washington a couple of guys in suits shake hands and you lose your job and eventually your home and your standing in the community and when you’re on the street begging for change people spit at you with disdain it all started in a room in Washington a couple of guys you’ve never even seen how can your fate be decided like that? how is that considered ok? on a day like any other day a deal was made, a contract signed the pipeline came through the taxpayers paid they said it was safe but it was badly designed when the accident happened next to your house it was barely news, they called it the cost of doing business on a day like any other day a deal was made and now people have died how could their fate be decided like that? how is that considered ok? oh oh oh modern times oh oh oh modern times where are the heroes of yesterday to fight the robber barons of this new gilded age? where’s our Teddy Roosevelt, fighting in Washington? where’s our Joe Hill, fighting on the streets? when I get fired for speaking my mind or put in jail for doing what’s right I’m being my own hero today because the robber barons are not going away oh oh oh modern times oh oh oh modern times
8.
I Hope We Never See You Again It was just another deal nothing wrong if you don’t get caught almost anyone can be bought and you were reasonably sure you’d built a wall around you and your family steel hand cuffs where your Rolex was hair finally matches suit as they lead you away, all I can say is I hope we never see you again I hope we never see you again they picked you up on your golf course secret service had to stand down for the agents of the law the real law, the people’s law you thought you were above it but you were wrong steel hand cuffs where your Rolex was hair finally matches suit as they lead you away, all I can say is I hope we never see you again I hope we never see you again is there a special jail for Presidents? maybe some dark bunker in a mountain do they keep their protection? guaranteed by constitution the talk show hosts cry as their ratings die your Russian friends can’t help you or your son in law you were finally burned by your arrogance steel hand cuffs where your Rolex was hair finally matches suit as they lead you away, all I can say is I hope we never see you again I hope we never see you again
9.
10.
Always Rock N Roll I used to have fifteen guitars now I’m holding onto my last one it was my first, the closest I ever got to love was when she sang the moment before you pull the trigger STOP look deep into whatever passes for your soul no matter how bad this world may treat you there’s always rock N roll eighty dollars a pill on the street for what I used to get free going down in the park doing what I have to do to survive the moment before you pull the trigger STOP look deep into whatever passes for your soul no matter how bad this world may treat you there’s always rock N roll every last fix is worse than every last fix before just when you think you hit bottom you find out every bottom has a trap door the moment before you pull the trigger STOP look deep into whatever passes for your soul no matter how bad this world may treat you there’s always rock N roll I’m not gonna say I’m keeping to the sunny side of the street but as far as any pale, old, has-been can I’m keeping it so my ear drums bleed! the moment before you pull the trigger STOP look deep into whatever passes for your soul no matter how bad this world may treat you there’s always rock N roll
11.
Back Into Something I’d feel so relieved if you were dead a sentiment no one wants in his head but it’s true and though I’d grieve you so many worries would disappear what will I do when you are gone? I’ll have to move on with no excuses for my failure just my own ineptitude life can boil down to next to nothing and when it does, how do you pick it up and make it back into something? I saw you nearly every day sometimes you noticed other times you were far away once in a while when you didn’t pick up the phone I had a moment when I thought you were gone life can boil down to next to nothing and when it does, how do you pick it up and make it back into something? when everything you thought you’d left behind is all that you ever have on your mind you can’t escape what really matters there’s no way around I’d feel so relieved if you were dead a sentiment no one wants in his head but it’s true
12.
Dirt 02:58
Dirt we traded our God for a textbook then we traded our books for cold, blue screen now we’re scanning the network searching looking for spirit in everything I’m going back to the land the old, brown earth I don’t need no preacher don’t want no new birth just give me a pair of worn out boots and plant my feet in the dirt In the dirt we left our families for money alone and unprepared in the cities we worked with no connections, we thought we were free but loneliness is just what it’s cracked up to be I’m going back to the land the old, brown earth I don’t need no preacher don’t want no new birth just give me a pair of worn out boots and plant my feet in the dirt In the dirt I want to feel the dirt of my home town put my toes in the sand of the river of my youth there is no secret to happiness but in the warm, dark earth I find the truth

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11th Fred Gillen Jr solo, studio album

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released September 14, 2019

Recorded, Mixed and Mastered 2018/ 2019 at Woody's House, Croton -On- Hudson, NY. Produced by Fred Gillen Jr. All songs ©2019 Fred Gillen Jr/ Fuel For the Revolution (B.M.I.)

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Fred Gillen Jr Peekskill, New York

NYFA grant recipient Fred Gillen Jr has released 9 full-length albums, and 5 ep’s, has toured all over the U.S. and Europe solo, and Nepal and India with Greenheart. His songs have been on ABC's "All My Children," NPR's "Car Talk," CMJ, and his version of Woody Guthrie's "I Ain't Got No Home" was featured on "Pete Remembers Woody," a collection of Pete Seeger's spoken stories about Woody Guthrie. ... more

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