Doug Spears
2005-10-15

Story

This song was written for my father about my grandfather - there's a lot of him in both of us.

Lyrics

He loved a fire when it was cold, Seemed the smell of wood smoke would open windows in his soul, And let him see things deep inside, In places that he’d learned to hide. He loved straight whiskey late at night, When he was too tired to run and too damned tired to fight, You could watch the time washin’ over him, Like a river runnin’ too strong to swim. Live and learn, love and die he’d say, He never learned to play the game, If you looked into his mournful eyes you knew, There was a lot of him in you. He loved to watch the coming dawn, And watch those shadows retreat across the farm, But as the night gave way to the day, I always knew just what he would say. Live and learn, love and die he’d say, He never learned to play the game, If you looked into his mournful eyes you knew, There was a lot of him in you.
Doug Spears
2005-10-15

Lyrics

Annie makes chairs out of hardwood vines, Intricate designs, like coarse brown lace, There’s a part of Annie’s soul in every chair she makes, They are so much like her, rough, but full of grace. Annie’s heart is in her chairs, They hold the secret to the love she longs to share, Annie makes those chairs, waiting for someone to care, Enough to see the love in Annie’s chairs. Annie’s not the kind to catch your eye, She doesn’t even try, that’s a game she doesn’t play, And her chairs are much the same, crude and a little plain, But when you look closer, they’ll take your breath away. Annie’s heart is in her chairs, They hold the secret to the love she longs to share, Annie makes those chairs, waiting for someone to care, Enough to see the love in Annie’s chairs. Annie’s chairs will wrap around you just like her loving arms, And rock you ‘til you’re hypnotized by Annie’s special charms. Annie makes chairs out of hardwood vines, Intricate designs, like coarse brown lace, If you want to capture Annie’s heart the secret’s in those chairs, Take the time to discover, all the passion hidden there. Annie’s heart is in her chairs, Annie’s heart is in her chairs.
Doug Spears
2005-10-15

Story

Winner of the Will McLean Award 1997

Lyrics

Vista Faire had raven hair, Black as a moonless night. They say she was part Seminole A daughter of the tribe. Made her home in a pine wood shack, No man to call her own. And she lived off the bounty of the land she loved, Long the banks of the old St. John’s Chorus: Now she goes down to the water side, Every morning just past dawn, To brush her hair and sing a song, Long the banks of the old St. John’s When Debary ran his paddle wheels, Up from lake Monroe, They’s often stop and pass the time, With that beautiful Indian girl. And she fed them well on fry bread, And fresh shad fish roe, And they would tell her all the news they heard, As they traveled up and down the flow. Chorus: Watchin’ for those old paddle wheels to come sailin’ down the Old St. John’s Bridge: Then one day on the paddle wheel, There came a gamblin’ man A passing stranger from New Orleans, Set his feet upon the sand. And he tarried there with Vista Faire, Beneath the Florida sun, But the wander lust soon came to him, And he never did return. Chorus: Hopin’ for that man she loved come sailin’ down the old St. John’s When summer came Vista Faire, Was heavy with his child, She gave birth to a little black haired girl, All alone in the Florida wild. Raised that girl in a pine wood shack, The two of them called home, And they lived off the bounty of the land they loved, Long the banks of the old St. John’s. Chorus To brush their hair and sing a song ‘long the banks of the Old St. John’s ‘Long the banks of the old St. John’s
Doug Spears
2005-10-15

Lyrics

Well from northwest Florida down the old Spanish trail, Men have been livin’ in a Teppintine hell, They been workin’, drawin’ that sap out of those pines, Singing good God almighty get me out of dis old teppintine. Work all day for a dollar or so, You spend twice what you got in that old company store, On credit, then they own you until you die, Well, good God almighty get me out of dis old teppintine. Got me a one room shack and a woman they owned, We got three kids, Lord we’re bound to have more, And I don’t know how I’m ever gonna keep those kids alive, Well, good God almighty get my kids out of dis old teppintine ‘Cause there ain’t no law to help a teppintine man, That old woods rider he’s got blood on his hands, Don’t you cross him, you’ll earn yourself a shallow grave up in the pines, Well, good God almighty that’s one way out of dis old teppintine. Now you don’t get into teppintine, You’re born in to it and you spend your time, Tryin’ to get out of this hell up in the Florida pines, Singin’ good God almighty get me out of dis old teppintine.
Doug Spears
2005-10-15

Story

In memory of Mickey Newbury, an American treasure

Lyrics

When you hear that lonesome whistle blow, Its callin’ that old songwriter home, To a poet’s rest, last stop of few regrets, When you hear that lonesome whistle blow. Heard his songs like a secret language, A sinner’s prayer and a lover’s tear, Joy and pain in unequal measures, As much to feel as to hear. Now a freight train still gets you into the city, But it might as well be the moon, ‘Cause he just came here for the music, Turns out the music’s gone so soon. When you hear that lonesome whistle blow, Its callin’ that old songwriter home, To a poet’s rest, last stop of few regrets, When you hear that lonesome whistle blow. Time like that freight train just tolls on, And when you hear that sad, sad whistle blow you’ll know, That the piper’s been paid for his songs, And that old songwriter’s gone. Well the rain brought the news down like a whisper, His passing came as no surprise, So just toss one back and toast old Mickey, And sing a sad, sad song just to say goodbye. When you hear that lonesome whistle blow, Its callin’ that old songwriter home, To a poet’s rest, last stop of few regrets, When you hear that lonesome whistle blow.
Doug Spears
2005-10-15

Lyrics

There’s a little thrift shop near my home, Full of tarnished treasures and abandoned dreams where I can go, And sift through the pieces of another’s past, That lie scattered all about that room like shards of broken glass. A Christmas gift that was never used, And a wine glass from Niagara Falls, 1962, Picture of a clown he looks so sad, He’s from a paint by the numbers kit just like I used to have. Well this is where old memories come to die, And all along these dusty shelves they lie, And for a price you can make one your own, And give an old worn out faded memory a brand new home. Now here’s a gown of yellowed lace, I can almost hear the wedding march and see her smiling face, I wonder if those dreams of love came true, Or did they just fade away like dreams so often do. Well this is where old memories come to die, And all along these dusty shelves they lie, And for a price you can make one your own, And give an old worn out faded memory a brand new home. One man’s burden another’s gold, They all seem to end up here where memories are sold. And there’s a quilt like my grandma’s right over there, Her’s had special meaning sown with love in each and every square, Those scraps of cloth were my trusted friends, That kept me so safe and warm at night after Grandma had tucked me in. Well this is where old memories come to die, And all along these dusty shelves they lie, And for a price you can make one your own, And give an old worn out faded memory, Give an old worn out faded memory, A brand new home, take one home, Take an old worn out memory on home from Cheap Charlie’s, Take an old worn out memory on home take one home, And make an old worn out memory your own.
Doug Spears
2005-10-15

Lyrics

Well in 1901 the steam train was still the king, And that steam whistle blew in every young man’s dreams, There just wasn’t anything faster than a steam train, Runnin’ with a head of steam. Ah steam train, runnin’ down the railroad runnin’ down the railroad track, Ah steam train, you push them throttles ahead boy dontcha dare pull ‘em back, You run a hundred twenty mile an hour you know you got a steam train, Flyin’ down the railroad track. Well they set a race between the Plant and the Seaboard lines, Just to see who could bring the mail in the fastest time, From Savanna on down to Jacksonville they’re gonna make those, Big steam engines whine. Now the Plant one eleven she was runnin’ just a bit behind, She’d got a bad start and she was gonna have to make up some time, That old engineer was coaxin’ her throttles like a mother bird, Tryin’ to teach her babies to fly. Ah steam train, runnin’ down the railroad runnin’ down the railroad track, Ah steam train, you push them throttles ahead boy dontcha dare pull ‘em back, You run a hundred twenty mile an hour you know you got a steam train, Flyin’ down the railroad track. Now the steel rails are screamin’ and the sparks are really startin’ to fly, That old train was really rollin’ as she crossed that Florida line, The old engineer he wouldn’t give her no rest, Threw her through the curves like a demon possessed, The fire man he grinned through the smoke and the grime ‘cause that steam train, Had set a new record time. Ah steam train, runnin’ down the railroad runnin’ down the railroad track, Ah steam train, you push them throttles ahead boy dontcha dare pull ‘em back, You run a hundred twenty mile an hour you know you got a steam train, Flyin’ down the railroad track.
Doug Spears
2005-10-15

Lyrics

He’s so far out there, Changing course without knowing where to go, He’s getting nowhere, And the sad part is he doesn’t even know, That he’s swimmin’ against the tide, Just swimmin’ against the tide, And he’s too weary to know why he has grown so tired, Swimmin’ against the tide. He was so full of promise, So full of hope, thought he knew just what to do, But his hopes deceived him, And told him lies he convinced himself were true, And now he’s swimmin’ against the tide, Just swimmin’ against the tide, And he’s too weary to know why he has grown so tired, Swimmin’ against the tide. And he wonders where that shore he’s searched for so long is lyin’ Lord knows its not because he has not tried, But somehow its always just beyond his horizon, And he’s losin’ ground, Swimmin’ against the tide. And I’m so much like him, Thought I knew some things, but I find I seldom do, All the rules keep changin’, And everything I start gets finished before I’m through, And I’m swimmin’ against the tide, Just swimmin’ against the tide, And I’m too weary to know why I have grown so tired, Swimmin’ against the tide. And I wonder where that shore I’ve searched for so long is lyin,’ Lord knows its not because I have not tried, But somehow its always just beyond my horizon, And I’m losin’ ground, Swimmin’ against the tide. And I’m slowin’ down, Swimmin’ against the tide, swimmin’ against the tide.
Doug Spears
2005-10-15

Lyrics

Wake up in the morning, all alone, Stumble to the kitchen, put some coffee on, Look out the window, Lord its gonna rain, Think I’ll wait right here and go insane. TV’s playin’, just sit and stare, Phone keeps ringin’, but nobody’s there, Unknown number, it’s an unknown name, Think I’ll wait right here and go insane. White is black and black is blue, You tell a lie until its true, The wounds are deep but there’s no pain, Until its hurtin’ time again. So lay down now, and try to sleep, Same old dream, and start to weep, Here in the darkness, its always the same, Think I’ll wait right here and go insane. White is black and black is blue, You tell a lie until its true, The wounds are deep but there’s no pain, Until its hurtin’ time again. There’s a hole in my heart that belongs to you, And Lord it hurts so bad when the wind blows through. So lay down now and try to sleep, Same old dream and start to weep, Here in the darkness its always the same, Think I’ll wait right here and go insane. There's nothing to lose, and not a damn thing to gain, Think I’ll wait right here and go insane.
Doug Spears
2005-10-15

Lyrics

Well they say that on that dreadful night, When Booth shot Lincoln and took to flight, A Florida boy had a hand in the deed, In John Wilkes Booth's conspiracy. And Lewis Powell was his given name, A Live Oak boy who would come to shame, He went to war in the infantry, And he wore the gray of the Confederacy. Now chile' ain't you heard, them devils done hung my baby boy, Ain't you heard, my baby boy was hung in Washington, He didn't do what they say he done. Well a war can steal a boy's heart and soul, And Lewis' soul turned black as coal, He was taken at Gettysburg, but soon broke free, Then he turned his back on his Confederacy. He deserted the cause and to the Union came, Changed his name to Lewis Paine, He swore an oath of loyalty, To the Union and Lincoln's presidency. But it all seemed part of a darker plan, For in Baltimore he joined up in Booth's band, And at the boarding house where thedeadly plans were laid, Young Lewis' life was cast away. And on the night when Booth took Lincoln's life, He first met with Paine and gave him a gun and a knife, Another Yankee man was to die at young Paine's hand, Lewis made the attempt, but he failed and he ran. Well, three days later they had their man, And declared him part of the assassin's plan' He died on the gallows as Lewis Paine, Though Powell was his given name. And the family in shame from Live Oak fled, With heavy hearts and hanging heads, Mrs. Powell cried a mother's tears' And she sobbed these words for all to hear. Now chile' ain't you heard, them devils done hung my baby boy, Ain't you heard, my baby boy was hung in Washington, He didn't do what they say he done.
Doug Spears
2005-10-15

Story

For Judy

Lyrics

I walk outside, the skies are grey, Still the sun seems to find a way, To shine on me, It must be you. Just when I’m feeling down and out, Hope breaks through these clouds of doubt, And leads me on, it must be you. It must be you that makes the stars seem so bright, It must be you that makes the wrong turn out so right, And it must be you that makes it all seem so worthwhile, It must be you. And when I don’t think that I can, Something takes me by the hand, And pulls me through, it must be you. Just when I’m lost and so afraid, A gentle voice calls out my name, And guides me home, it must be you. It must be you that makes the stars seem so bright, It must be you that makes the wrong turn out so right, And it must be you that makes it all seem so worthwhile, It must be you.
Doug Spears
2005-10-15

Lyrics

This old house is still and silent, nobody lives here anymore, Its been a long time since a footstep fell upon these wooden floors, Four generations have stood right where I stand, The roots of a family growing strong up from this sand. And this old house . . . Once upon a time, Was the place where everything I loved had its common tie, And this old house . . . that I loved so long ago, It is still the place I dream about when I dream dreams of home. All the walls are stained and faded, dust is settling everywhere, Yet everything is still just where it was the last time I was here, But now out in the front yard near that old oak tree I’d climb, There’s a for sale sign that tells my heart this home’s no longer mine. And this old house . . . Once upon a time, Was the place where everything I loved had its common tie, And this old house . . . that I loved so long ago, It is still the place I dream about when I dream dreams of home. I can still hear their voices though they seem so far away, And I still see all their faces when I close my eyes and pray, One last time I wander through these rooms and everything I see, Just flickers like a silver screen of a thousand memories. And this old house . . . Once upon a time, Was the place where everything I loved had its common tie, And this old house . . . that I loved so long ago, It is still the place I dream about when I dream dreams of home.