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DEAD SOUTH  1997

Song List

Killing Me

James Dean Coming Over Te Hill

1945

* Here She Comes

The Folksinger

Rita, Memphis & The Blues

Exile

Better Off Alone

Real Television

Pray For Me

In The Rain

Drowning Man

Credits

Tom Ovans - Vocals, guitars, harmonica, mandolin, percussion

Robb Earls - Bass on "Killing Me", "Better Off Alone"; electric guitar on "The Folksinger"

Bob Kommersmith - Bass on "Here She Comes" and "The Folksinger"

Alan Lowrey - Drums on "Here She Comes", Bongos on "Better Off Alone"

Lou Ann Bardash - Vocal on "Killing Me"

 

Directed by Tom Ovans

Executive Producer: Lou Ann Bardash

Recorded at Barking Dog

Engineered by Kid Fader

Mixed at Sound Vortex

Engineered by Robb Earls

Artwork and design by Joe Montgomery

Photography: Lou Ann Bardash, Kid Flash

Words & Music by Tom Ovans © & Ⓟ 1997 (BMI)

*Words & Music by Tom Ovans © & Ⓟ 1986 (BMI)

Lyrics

 

Killing Me

 

Train whistle blowing over the hill 

Sun going down but the day is still

Walk that line, dig that ditch

Do everything to keep the rich man rich

 

Gabriel, Gabriel blow your horn

I ain’t alive I ain’t even been born

Jesus, Jesus where you be

In the name of Christ you’re killing me

 

I ain’t a kid you know I’ve been around

I’ve seen lots of good men cut down

I’ve been soaked in oil, I’ve been washed in blood

I’ve been through the fires, I’ve been through the floods

 

Gabriel, Gabriel blow your horn

I ain’t alive I ain’t even been born

Jesus, Jesus where you be

In the name of Christ you’re killing me

 

Well I’m going south, I’m going deep

I’m going where nobody sleeps

I’ll pop these pills, I’ll take a drink

I don’t care what nobody thinks

 

Gabriel, Gabriel blow your horn

I ain’t alive I ain’t even been born

Jesus, Jesus where you be

In the name of Christ you’re killing me

 

 

James Dean Coming Over The Hill

 

The sky is blue the sky is black

John Train he ain’t ever coming back

 

Papa was a rolling stone

Now he ain’t nothing but a coughing bag of bones

 

Hang around this old town

They’ll build you up just to cut you back down

 

Going down to New Orleans

Gonna make a deal gonna get myself clean

 

Hey babe got my eye on you

A rambling girl knows all about these blues

 

Jesus saves Jesus kills

James Dean coming over the hill

 

 

 

1945

 

The changing of the guard brought only grief

There was no place to run there was no relief

We only did what we had to

Saw you in the station hair full of rain

I was just a soldier in between trains

I guess there was something about you

 

In a run down bar we had a few drinks

In a room down the hall we crossed the brink

And I never felt like that before

But the morning came like the days ahead

As the war raged on and we buried the dead

And nothing was ever the same no more

 

Now many years have gone I’m just an old man

Living in an age I don’t understand

Everything seems to be about greed and fame

But sometimes at night when the city’s asleep

I sit by the window and let my memories weep

And realize I never knew her name

 

 

* Here She Comes

 

You know I’ve been cheated so misused

You know I’ve been left for dead all along this avenue

Well you know it don’t matter no not at all

Cause I, I just heard my baby call

 

Here she comes

Here she comes

Here she comes

My Baby for me

 

You know all over this town doors slam in my face

Cause I don’t play the game, don’t worship their race

But you know that shit don’t matter no not at all

Cause I, I just heard my baby call

 

Here she comes

Here she comes

Here she comes

My baby for me

 

Well you know they say there’s a darkness that’s coming across this land

You know they say the end is near and a new day is at hand

Well you know I can’t be thinking about that stuff no not right now at all

Cause I, I just heard my baby call

 

Here she comes

Here she comes

Here she comes

My baby for me

 

Lord have mercy

For my baby and me 

 

 

 

The Folksinger

 

Now what did I say you know I’ve lost track of it all

I was just some kind of gypsy headed for a fall

And when the rains came down you know I fought real hard

Now my days are numbered there’s been a changing of the guard

 

I was bound for glory as I rambled and roamed

Said goodbye to my Ma, turned my back on my home

And I sang out my songs on the streets of Babylon

And I watched one by one ‘til all my friends were gone

 

Now I’m standing here got no place to go

And the wind’s blowing hard and the night’s turning cold

And as I look around I feel like some old dinosaur

I guess you are what you are then you are no more

 

So baby before you hang up the phone

Remember me sometime when you’re all alone

For I’ll be out there somewhere still playing this guitar

Maybe in a foreign country or drunk in some bar

 

 

 

 

Rita, Memphis & The Blues

 

Hanging on the corner working for the man

Running these numbers, pushing cocaine

Going up to Memphis to sing me some blues

Oh pretty baby I’m tired of being used

 

Rita, where you been so long

Rita, where you been so long

 

Down by that river in the middle of the night

Tumbled them dice right into a fight

When the smoked cleared man I’m telling you the truth

You pull a gun on someone you just better shoot

 

Rita, where you been so long

Rita, where you been so long

 

Shackles on my feet, hounds on my trail

Made it all the way from that county jail

Then I took a wrong turn in the wrong part of town

Now I’m coughing blood up man I’m going down

 

Rita, where you been so long

Rita, where you been so long

 

Well listen up friend don’t say another word

You ain’t seen me why you ain’t even heard

Go tell my mother, my poor sister too

I’m still up in Memphis, still singing them blues

 

Rita, where you been so long

Rita, where you been so long

 

 

 

Exile

 

Standing on this highway, standing on this road

I’m standing where nobody ever goes

I can hear the thunder, I can hear the rain

I can hear the wind crying and the pain

 

Baby I’m calling you not because I still care

I just had to know you’re still there

Honey ain’t it scary, honey ain’t it strange

How things get started how people change

 

Man of love, man of hate

I just don’t know how much more of this I can take

Well here we go again blame the rich, blame the poor

Seems like I’ve seen this movie before

 

Now honey don’t say it, don’t break this spell

I just had to talk can’t you tell

And I’ll be alright, I’ll be okay

You know I was just leaving anyway 

 

 

Better Off Alone

 

Clock strikes five the watch says ten

Phone is ringing but there’s nobody in

Oh babe better off alone

 

Went to the corner to get some beer

Didn’t see you or nobody there

Oh babe better off alone

 

Well the word is out up and down the street

Summer’s coming he’s bringing the heat

My throat is dry my thirst is gone

I’m walking on water but I’m sinking like a stone

 

Got me book, got me a gun

Got me a race I don’t have to run

Oh babe better off alone

 

Well I had me a friend from a long time ago

What happened to him I still don’t know

Gonna take me a trip down across the track

If I bet myself lucky I ain’t coming back

 

Looking out the window waiting on the change

Watching the kids all selling cocaine

Oh babe better off alone

 

 

 

 

Real Television

 

Photograph your brain boy carry it like a passport

So when you become disconnected you’ll have some paper support

Turn around fast girl before they turn the switch off

Before the buttons are pushed before the hype begins to stop

Last night I had a dream babe last night I had a vision

There was a blackout down below and I saw some real television

 

I got a heartache in my ankle I got bitten by a snake

Poison on my fingertips and a fever I can’t shake

Well here comes another future another virtual blast

Dancing girls and flapping lips some more icons falling fast

Last night I had a dream babe last night I had a vision

I could hear the walls whispering and I saw some real television

 

Cars and trucks crashing through the gates

Everybody wants to save us by stealing all they can take

Hate crimes on the airways human cargo on the road

Sons and daughters all waiting for that latest basket case to explode

 

There was garbage in the alley broken bottles everywhere

I’d seen blood in her eyes man barbed wire in her hair

Ambulances were screaming as we stood there in a trance

Then the cameras zoomed in and the truth never had a chance

Last night I had a dream babe last night I had a vision

I could smell the bodies burning and I saw some real television

 

No use having opinions no use having a thought

The saviors have all been slaughtered all your heroes have all been bought

You can’t trust nobody you can’t even trust yourself

For when trouble comes you know you’re gonna be blaming someone else

 

I was stranded on the highway a thousand miles below

I’d seen the death of the hustler and the auctioning of his soul

I ran up to the hill stood beneath the acid sky

Then I heard his voice and the last words he cried

Last night I had a dream babe last night I had a vision

I could feel the earth shaking and I saw some real television

 

 

 

Pray For Me

 

Pray for me my darling one

Pray for me my darling one

You know I’m out here I’m on the run

 

Got me a bottle, got me some smoke

Got me a bottle, got me some smoke

Gonna take me a drink, gonna take me a toke

 

They say I killed him in the first degree

They say I killed him in the first degree

Well if you call that murder then I guess I’m guilty

 

Couldn’t take no more what he done to you

Couldn’t take no more what he done to you

I only did what any man would do

 

So pray for me my own true love

Pray for me my own true love

Cause you know it’ll be you I’ll be thinking of

 

 

 

In The Rain

 

It was long ago and far away another place, another day

When dreams were easy and love was just a state of mind

She was young she was pretty looked like a girl from the city

But he was tough and afraid of wasting time

So he ran away and he hid out on the road

Left her heart burning at the stake

But he’s driving back tonight got to see if she’s alright

He’s wondering if it’s not too late

 

He grew up in a little town Friday nights drinking friends down

Gambling money waking up alone

He met her in a little bar, sweetest thing he ever saw

Took her out ‘til one night he took her home

But she made him promise that he would never leave

Never break her heart in two

But he’d never been here before, soon ran out of words to say

He did the worst thing a man could do

 

Find a man with lots of luck never trust one who smiles too much

Mamma always use to say to her

So out she went like a little girl with her head full of curls

Looked at love as a friend never saw the danger

And down the stairs she fell her body choked with pain

By a memory that she could not erase

Time and love they’ll work as foes until one finally knows

And gets used to it’s bitter taste

 

He finally reaches the door knocks twice and then once more

Standing there shivering in the cold

She opens up he sees a face but he can’t find a trace

She looks like somebody he don’t know

And she tells him he must leave for she wants to sleep

And that he’s not the right man for her

He falls back into the night races away out of sight

With a feeling that’s just too much to bear

 

She turns out the light not so sure what she did was right

Once she would’ve cried but now she just stares

Into the maze of the dark listens to her pounding heart

And tells herself she doesn’t have to care

And the city lights can be so cruel and couples seem unreal

Especially when you got no one who waits

Pours himself another shot from an old bottle of scotch

A drink he never thought he’d have to take

And I myself and all my travels, all the clues that have unraveled

Have come to see and know more and more

But one thing that remains unclear a question that I always hear

Without love what are we living for

Do you try to convince yourself in all the things you don’t believe

Or do you just become drunk from the pain

Standing there like a stone captured into a life alone

Just another teardrop in the rain

 

 

 

Drowning Man

 

Somebody better tell me

Before I go insane 

They say there’s a darkness coming

They say it’s going to rain

They say it’s going to rain dear

They say it’s going to rain

 

You see I met this stranger

Out on the lonesome road

He said this world was doomed

And I better save my soul

I better save my soul dear

I better save my soul

 

So I went to the river

And I threw myself in

Only to discover

That I could not swim 

No I could not swim dear

No I could not swim

 

So now I stand before y’all

I hope you understand

I don’t mean no trouble 

I’m just a drowning man

I’m just a drowning man dear

I’m just a drowning man

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