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MOONDOG

by Joseph Huber

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1.
Moondog 03:22
MOONDOG You broke out of your pen, said, "Amen," You can't go home again if it's never been. You just kept playing your song and then You played it even louder even when they said, "When!" You got a tattoo, didn't think it through, Now you're getting gone to go be somebody new, Two less shoulders to bump into Letting loose while truth settles in. Well, for 16 years your ma n' papa told you, “Don't you know someday you got to put it all down,” But you just didn't listen, you just couldn't listen, You just kept a-wishin' and look at you now, Well, you're out there prowling like a moondog howling At the night eye full and round, And everybody told me that you'd always be a-runnin' And you'll never settle down. You got plenty of steam, just running outta green; Got enough for cheap beer and gasoline, Mama told you, “Don't you let ‘em make you mean!” But you're harder than the hinges of eternity it seems You put some new lines on your old face Trying to fix an old heart with a new place; Fat on freedom where most got a taste, Now there's no case for getting lean. Now for 22 years, your ma n’ papa told you, “Don't you know someday you got to put it all down,” But you just didn't listen, you just couldn't listen, You just kept a-wishin' and look at you now, Well, you're out there prowling like a moondog howling At the night eye full and round, And everybody told me that you'd always be a-runnin' And you'll never settle down. Well, it's that old fire you never could kill, Now your stuck between low and lower still, Just a specter sent, your spine to chill; An old ghost floating like wind under your sill, Oh, but those old tunes, they still feel new Enough to kick up a little dust to, There ain't no sense in saving you, You're gonna do just what you will. Now for 34 years your ma n’ papa told you, “Don't you know someday you got to put it all down,” But you just didn't listen, you just couldn't listen, You just kept a-wishin' and look at you now, Well, you're out there prowling like a moondog howling At the night eye full and round, And everybody told me that you'd always be a-runnin' And you'll never settle down.
2.
WHEN THE WATERS WERE ONE Well, the evening rains washed out the riverbed, and the red clay had gone painted the river red. And I stood just as shaggy as a hickory stem. Are your eyes still as bright as I remember them? Today the self-born are mocking the growing and the dying, While their whims play games with this heart of mine. For we both took to flame like a sun-soaked pine Takes to firelight high in the summertime. We graced the fiddle with a dance And the song that we sung Served to remind that we're not yet unyoung, And the music rolled through us like a river runs For a river knows that the waters are one. Around a circle of flame where the living draw near, The dead whisper a good word in a ready ear Of the love they'd make if only they were here, And the chance they'd take before it disappears. But seems all was found just a little too late, While hope lies hiding all alone in wait, While the rhythm in my head pines for the way That we danced the way we did the day... We graced the fiddle with a dance And the song that we sung Served to remind that we're not yet unyoung, And the music flowed through us like a river runs For a river knows that the waters are one. And as I closed my eyes ‘neath a waking sky with my head down on the ground, I prayed the morning light would bless what the night Had found in between this old world and a dream. As you walked through the field in the open air You were caught in the field of another's stare. I was finding how hard it can be to bare A pain that gains all the more you care. Now I find beauty only in death upon a stage, And the rhythmed string of lonely words Hurled upon a page, While the river rolls on through every age Just the same way that it did the day... We graced the fiddle with a dance And the song that we sung Served to remind that we're not yet unyoung, And the music rolled through us like a river runs For a river knows that the waters are one.
3.
After You 04:11
I first saw you trapped on an old barstool, And on each shoulder--another drooling fool Like wild dogs circling some soon-to-be-food They were after you. They were after you. Shook my head and I wandered across the room With some highfalutin idea for saving you. Just one look in your eye and I was an old dog too I was after you. I was after you. We talked in tongues as the night fire grew Fearing only the hour that we bid adieu. And I knew right then that there would never be Another woman after you...oh, after you. And we found us a place in the mountains fine. I'd stare out from my porch and sing, "The hills are mine!" And a cold wind would blow and you'd say, "Come inside." And I followed after you--Chasing after you. And we had us a little boy and a little girl too, Raised them up tall and told them all that's true And he took after me, and then right on cue, Oh she took after you--right after you. And on that wicked day when time followed through And made your resting place 'neath the morning dew I whispered in your ear, "What's to fear?...for soon I'll follow after you--Oh, after you.
4.
ANOTHER MAN’S SHOES There's a place folks call home-- Full of riches without wealth, There's a place folks call hell Where a man can't help himself, And the road folks will go there-- Another can never tell, But a warm and open heart will do you just as well. It'll pull you from the ditches And the mud on your heels Will fall as the wind Lifts you o'er the swaying fields Where a soul who's lost it’s sight Of the great and mighty wheel May somehow, there and then, begin again to feel. Hey brother, tell you what you do, You walk for a mile in another man's shoes. Another man's shoes, so they say, Will help to make you a better man someday. The past has a way of never leaving one alone. Some carry it like a weight In the marrow of their bones Through a world dark with power Where the only light that's shone Is the goodness of another whose heart is bigger grown. Hey brother, tell you what you do, You walk for a mile in another man's shoes. Another man's shoes, so they say, Will help to make you a better man someday. When we perch upon the wreckage And the shambles of our gains, Standing painted in the corner Of the progress we've made, Never knowing another's footsteps ‘Til our own are in chains-- Will we still await another to hasten to our aid?
5.
AND THE NIGHT Well, I can't recall the headlines, Or the stars that stole their way above the lights, But I was there and you were there...and the night. Let it mean just what it means Let every steady hand steer with whims and dreams, 'Cause all is fair when love is there and it feels so right. When the moon shines and you fill your cup, And the dark rooms of a heart light up, Every little thing, well, it's always enough When the night falls on you. We bid the day, “So long.,” Breathed in its final rays and came out a song Of you and me, and me and you and a love still strong. When you drink your wine and you move in close, And your pale skin in the moonlight glows, And you smile and you don't even know When the night falls on you.
6.
I WONDER WHERE YOU GO Oh, how I wonder where you go; Where faces fly from your tired eye; Or your tears when you run and hide; Where your smile fades; Or your love after it runs away before it’s found Like all those souls in the ground-- Now forever lost, but bound to fly away. How I wonder what you see When you suffer without company; In your prison or your ruler's seat. What new specter's roam And fill the places I would hold in aching dreams-- To leave the world just as it seems, Not the way it is or we wanted it to be? Oh, I wonder who I'll be-- Will I sing my songs and make believe You were only just a dream to me? Will I change my tune, And laugh at all those thoughts of you That caused such pain? Will I found I have stood on a rock That only would sink into space, Left to go all alone where we all go anyway?
7.
Hardwired 03:50
HARDWIRED Turning tides and shifting sands, Power fades and changes hands And nothing is lost or gained right from the start. Whatever was true yesterday Is true to the final page, But is it the same with a heart? Will time tear us apart? The music between you and me Has always been the minor key, Slowly drowning in our debts. We don't know why our hearts ache, Just that they do, at any rate, The hard times ain't even happened yet, But you know me, I'll take about any bet. Honey, we’re still hardwired, We got the heart to ride through these hard times, Just like old-timers hold to the party line, We still hold tight--hardwired. A life to earn, an hour to spend, A second to break, a life to mend This love we've made. A life to build, an hour to burn, A second to turn the life we've learned Into one we'd easily trade. Oh, but here we still are today.
8.
A NORTHWOOD WALTZ The skies opened wide and the snow tumbled down From Rhinelander down over old Titletown, And the fields and the rivers once golden and brown Long hide 'neath the cold white and blue. There’s a voice on the phone-- Said, "I know that you're gone. I've lost you, and all that we knew." I don't know just where I'm a-goin’, But I'll be going soon. Still the Christmas lights hang in the center of town Near Malarkey's from Jefferson to Washington. I thank the good Lord they ain't taken down As I cling to the years that are through. But the cold, drunken crowd Is getting warmer and louder, I know that it's time for a tune. I don't know just where I'm a goin’ But I'll be going soon. Somewhere far away, she's crying my name, In the drum of my ear there's a-ringing. But the fiddle plays on, and the crowd sings along Though they know not the words to be singing. Just... (Lie-lie-lie) It's fifteen below as the plows clear the road, But what way can be cleared back to you that I know?-- For the engine won't turn and your heart's letting go Of a fool who's torn into two. So, as snowflakes dance down their currents of chance, Will love chance again upon me and you? I don't know just where I'm a-goin’, But I'll be going soon. Well, I've failed, but I've tried. Hell, before they died, Even angels and saints were a-begging, Now they sing some sweet song in perrenial dawn In an old unknown tongue I reckon. Like... (Lie-lie-lie) Now the blackcappeds sing in the dawning of day, And the icicles melt on their way to the bay, So too it would seem I should be on my way For I've lingered too long in the gloom. Now the slants and the cracks In the walk how they dance And they talk as I take to a tune. I don't know just where I'm a goin’, But I'll be going soon.
9.
Centerline 03:57
It's a long, long ride down the road of time. If you're wondering whose business I'm minding--it's mine. Keeping my eye on the end in mind, And trying not to cross that center line. Some folks out there make you feel ashamed. They'll cut you off, make you put on the brakes. I stay in my lane, but you know sometimes A man's gotta cross that center line. Well, see me waving and weaving in the left lane. I'm feeling like a one-way behind 20 tones of freight. Don't take it the wrong way, but you know sometimes A man's gotta cross that center line. A real good woman, well, they're hard to find, And even harder to please, and hardest to keep blind To the fool you are, so mind the signs Hoping you don't have to cross her center line. Well, see me waving and weaving in the left lane. Your love is like a one-way behind 20 tones of freight. Don't take it the wrong way, but you know sometimes A man's gotta cross that center line. Now as this old engine burns, the only lessons left to learn Get learned the hard way. And as we slow to a crawl, I got a few more lines to cross Before we parts ways. You can't ask the Lord, "What's the meter say?" You gotta live your life prepared every day, To let go of the wheel and let those bright lights Stare you straight in the eye across that center line. Well, see me waving and weaving in the left lane. This life is like a one-way behind 20 tones of freight. Tried to be a good man, but to have a good time A man's gotta cross that center line.
10.
Geronimo! 05:25
GERONIMO! Geronimo! Gotta let go, now you’re falling All alone without warning. Now who'll put you to bed and tell you When to wake up in the morning? Nobody but you. You were sitting in the back row hiding, Just waiting on the world to begin, You were trying to look tied up; Said you were waiting on a friend, Ah, but no one showed--you'd already known-- Now you're too tired to pretend That just one more day will awake some other end. Feel it sinking in? Now every day wanes another war You're just a little too nice to win, As you fight to force a meager word passed your chin. Any friends, you'd hope, would soon learn to know They didn't ever really know a thing, And you'll never make a flower bloom By squeezing the stem. Now it's sinking in... Geronimo! Gotta let go, now you’re falling All alone without warning. Now who'll put you to bed and tell you When to wake up in the morning? Nobody but you. Will you ever stop believing You should be getting more from them? Would you ever believe That the fault could be on your end? Will you ever stop fearing That they might never be that way again? Would you believe They never were that way to begin? Will you ever win? Now, you find yourself making a new home With every bucket of sand As the smoke eats the stress from your lips To the tips of your hands. Could it be the bonds of freedom Are just as heavy as wearing a band? And not every chute opens, but everybody lands... Best as they can. Geronimo!
11.
RIVERS OF SMOKE Now there she stands staring at the sea again, Doubts and dreams lie tethered, forever wed As if a fading love like a fading body craves Just a touch of water. And the waves-- How their pale fingers curl upon the sand-- Brushstrokes from an unknown master’s hand Shaping all these sorrows into works of art As the years grow another ring around a heart, Because its been so long that we’ve been apart, Another day just drifting down too far... These rivers of gold I’ve been going down; Rivers of wine I’ve been floating down Straight outta town, now I’m just so far from home Watching my love go up rivers of smoke. That little girl, oh, she aims to please, Traded in her feet for wings--now wings for knees, But don’t be found waiting around for a soul-astray Who don’t know any walk, but walking away. I said I’d see you standing ‘round the next river’s bend, But just found another and on without end... These rivers of gold I’ve been going down, Rivers of wine I’ve been floating down Straight outta town, now I’m just so far from home Watching my love go up rivers of smoke.
12.
WHERE YOU SAID YOU WOULD BE Well, the past is gone and the night's alive, And the future is on the run. The promise of a love so blind-- No rest for anyone. We said we'd meet by summer's end And forget the world we knew, Where the woodcock dance in moonlit flight And the river splits in two. So, there I wait for you. Now, I wonder where you could be. I went right where you said you would be Waiting for me. Now, I'm waiting on you. Don't let it be too good to be true. Two mirrored souls in fevered dance Upon the thinnest strand Sparked the edges of the universe; Shook the limits of the land. But, so now goes the twilight's blue, So too now comes the rain, And still now with no sign of you, So too now comes the pain Unknown by any name. And I wonder where you could be. I went right where you said you would be Waiting for me. Now, I'm waiting on you. Don’t let it be too good to be true. In dreams I sailed to a land of youth Where on golden harps they played, And bid, "Sing us a song of human love!" I plucked one string and they pulled it away, And said, "You best be on your way." Now I wonder where you could be. I went right where you said you would be Waiting for me. Now, I'm waiting on you. Too bad it was too good to be true.
13.
Found Penny 03:35
FOUND PENNY Oh, bless the day that I found my love. Alas, she didn’t find me! Oh, but I found a penny in the wink of the walk And I’ll whip up a wish or three. As I flipped it in, how my eyes did glimmer In the shimmer of a shallow stream-- Found penny, found penny, Will you feed a fool his dream? Found penny! On my life, I’m gonna throw you up in the air. Found penny! Oh, by tonight I’ll be lost in the loops of her hair. The day that a bouncing newborn babe The branches of a bur oak bend, Or holy blokes don’t billow smoke About a broke world near the end, I’ll hold quite well to what I hold is love-- From the rims of my heart it brims, Found penny, I need some luck, Don’t you tell me, “There’s no such thing!” Found penny! On my life, gonna throw you up in the air. Found penny! Oh, by tonight I’ll be lost in the loops of her hair. A feather standing on its quill; a coin upon a reeded end, And balanced, one upon the other, In a thundering tempest wind-- Less likely is to define love and all that lies within, Oh, found penny, found penny, how tempting to pretend. Found penny! On my life, gonna throw you up in the air. Found penny! Oh, by tonight I’ll be lost in the loops of her hair.
14.
The trees are in their autumn beauty, The woodland paths are dry, Under the October twilight the water Mirrors a still sky; Upon the brimming water among the stones Are nine-and-fifty swans. The nineteenth autumn has come upon me Since I first made my count; I saw, before I had well finished, All suddenly mount And scatter wheeling in great broken rings Upon their clamorous wings. I have looked upon those brilliant creatures, And now my heart is sore. All's changed since I, hearing at twilight, The first time on this shore, The bell-beat of their wings above my head, Trod with a lighter tread. Unwearied still, lover by lover, They paddle in the cold Companionable streams or climb the air; Their hearts have not grown old; Passion or conquest, wander where they will, Attend upon them still. But now they drift on the still water, Mysterious, beautiful; Among what rushes will they build, By what lake's edge or pool Delight men's eyes when I awake some day To find they have flown away?
15.
PALE, LONESOME RIDER I'm a pale, lonesome rider Throwing my face right to the wind. A better man would settle down beside her. Who do you think I am? I'm a pale lonesome rider, Companion to no 'where' or 'when,' I guess I'll have to wait until the next life To begin again. When the sun sits beside her, You know she don’t understand How all that hope that she’s been holding Is dripping through her hands. Now it seems like we were sent here With eyes to a different world's design. Honey, we can't go on forever, But we can stay the night. So you're told a soul sent from heaven Took this body, a soul-machine, to ride, But now we have to go on living When those dreams die. So, I'll focus on forgetting, But some memories don't need a hand. What is a man to make so much of his winters And his foolish plans?

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COMING JULY 12, 2019 To CD & DIGITAL!

LIMITED Double VINYL w/ DIGITAL DOWNLOAD CARD Ships AUGUST!

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released July 12, 2019

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Joseph Huber Milwaukee, Wisconsin

After 7 years of hard touring and playing banjo with the influential streetgrass group, .357 String Band, Joseph Huber has found an individual voice that covers a vast range of influence. Playing all the instruments, from fiddle to harmonica to banjo to tambourine (and as many as he can at once) he amazes and entertains, but also reveals substance. His songs are lyrical, but he knows a good hook. ... more

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