A Barrel Of Monkeys

by Bruce Salmon

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about

First solo album by Bruce Salmon, recorded in Austin, TX.
produced by Rob Halverson, including contributions from 15 musicians.
Violin, accordion, tuba, a wild array of percussion, from such notables as Dony Wynn, Laura Scarborough, Willie Crash Landin, Michelle Alany, Dahktur Sick the Fiddle Killer, Amanda Kitchens, John Bush, and more!

credits

released May 3, 2014

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all rights reserved

about

Bruce Salmon Alpine, Texas

Bruce Salmon is a New Orleans native, Texas-raised musician, troubadour, and singer/songwriter. His music is steeped in the Texas songwriting tradition, seasoned by hometown jazz, funk, and blues.
Mr. Salmon has also extensively studied Eastern European folk music at the source in Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Turkey and Romania.
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Track Name: Coffee With A Clown
up at the crack of dawn to have coffee with a clown
hauling my ass cross town, having coffee with a clown

everybody knows my smile is upside down
squirt me with a rubber rose; turn my luck around
turn it all around
pick myself up off the ground, having coffee with a clown

wipe that pie off your face
for a night out on the town
make sure you save a taste for that pretty little clown

that's the way it goes; you've stained your evening gown
turn it inside out, wear it upside down
turn your luck around; check the lost and found
haul your ass crosstown, have coffee with a clown
Track Name: Old Joe
old joe, when you gonna go, away, away, away?
ya may be right in the middle of the night
i never get a chance to say

dialogue with a demagogue, never get in edgeways
captain's log with an old bullfrog
never see the light of day

if you don't see a light in the middle of the night
better just stay away
we be holding forth with some whiskey on the porch
shooting shit until the morning breaks

I solicited advice and a bowl of beans and rice
i brought tobacco, joe brought the spice
then the waitress reappears, she's singing in my ear
i must be wrong for you to be so right

I solicited advice and a bowl of beans and rice
Ibrought tobacco, joe brought the spice
then the smoke began to clear; there's ringing in my ears
i must be wrong, for you to be so right
Track Name: Singing For Supper
singing for supper

she's wanting a good man who'll be sticking around
not constantly shopping for a ticket on his way out of town
he's wanting a crib to hang his coat and hat, with no money down

when things get sticky, tricky heads for the door
heads for the night lights where tonight
nobody's keeping the score
he tallies his winnings, then fumbles with his keys at the door

CH: he sings for his supper almost every night
but that doesn't pay the rent or bills,
and now they're killing the lights
will he be home for supper tonight?

a rumbling stomach and a yearning heart
a broken poker chip for every moment that they're apart
she looks in his eyes and sees that
she should have known right from the start

in spite of the love, the expectations were gone
stayed unspoken, one eye open at the breaking of dawn
steps out of the cab to find his stuff scattered all over the lawn

CH: he sings for his supper almost every night
but that doesn't pay the rent or bills,
and now they're killing the lights
will he be home for supper tonight?
whatever tune he's breaking out is never making it right
Track Name: Wonderland
she came to me in a dream to remind me of a promise that I made
to myself, no one else
a promise to be true
a promise to remember the sky is always blue behind the clouds
a promise I'd be with you alone, in a crowd

in the wake of wonderland, I awaken once again
in a field where used to stand a forest
in the wake of wonderland, i fell asleep before it all began
I can't remember when I awoke

I tried to put it down, I wonder what I found
I wonder just how long I wondered

the family plot that was tended for so long is now overgrown
her curly locks, the fabric of my dreams have long been shorn
I wonder how long they had grown?
I wonder how long I've been gone
I wonder what happened to my home while I wandered?

in the wake of wonderland, I awaken once again
in a field where used to stand a forest
in the wake of wonderland, i fell asleep before it all began
I can't remember when I awoke
Track Name: The Creek Ran Dry
before my eyes the creek ran dry
a fountain of water rose up in the sky
there'll be no more floating, no one knows why
but I was there when the creek ran dry

thunder rained down from the sky
but nary a tear for my dry eyes
lightning flashed, showed us why
we were there when the creek ran dry

we stood in the dark with our boats in our hands
watching the water uncover the land
thinking of drinking a glass of sand
no one remembers, cause no one asked why
but I was there when the creek ran dry

a grackle sang out in the sky
remembering thirsty, I finally cried
remembering days when nobody died
and a thousand birds sang out in the sky

with thunder and lightning and tears in my eyes
I fell to the creek bed, I finally died
a pillar of dust rose up in the sky
I was there when the creek ran dry

black smoke blocked out the sun
looking for cover, there was nowhere to run
we stood in the dark with our boats in our hands
thinking of drinking a glass of sand
and no one remembers, cause no one asked why
but I was there when the creek ran dry
Track Name: Dawg Daze
dog days, are coming soon
howling on the bridge at the first summer moon
cut off my sleeves, strike up a tune
make it thru the heat if we can get thru june

walked across hot coals to see lizzie lee
bought a margarita, couldn't get it for free
look at tex melting up there on the stage
look at that canary combust in the cage

it's the dog days, it's the 5th of July
blood, sweat and tears running in my eyes
i'm guessing, i'm fixing, i'm ready to die
turn me over roast me on the other side

the one seven four ain't running on time
had to catch the bus, 'cause i got a flat tire
crosstown traffic at a quarter to five
by the time i got home i was dead or alive

dog days, it's August the 9th
turn myself in to the sheriff tonight
holding tank, is air conditioned inside
30 days will take me to the other side X 3
turn me over roast me on the other side
Track Name: All This Way
he came all this way just to say goodbye,
say good bye, say goodbye
she could have written a letter with smoke in the sky
she came all this way just to say goodbye

she wore her beads, I wore two-tone shoes
two-tone shoes, two-tone shoes
we got all dressed up, just to hear the news
she wore her beads, I wore two-tone shoes

Away, oh, away, oh

she left a little early, so there's plenty of time
plenty of time, there's plenty of time
I left my wristwatch home; I haven't got the time
after all this time, I haven't got the time

she always hated to say goodbye
she'd rather say "see you later", or maybe good night
she came all this way to look me in the eye
she always hated to say good bye

away, oh, away, oh

I must have gotten smoke in my eyes
in my eyes, in my eyes
I missed her mist, it knocked me down to size
knocked me down to size, with smoke in my eyes

she always hated to say goodbye
she'd rather say "see you later", or maybe good night
she came all this way
to look me in the eye
she came all this way just to say good bye
Track Name: Jimbo's RV
the west texas wind blows through this old RV
that ain't going nowhere no more
the dogs got excited; the moon kept on shining
i woke up every time the and slammed the door
every time i hear that whistle blow, i wanna get up,
go down by the tracks and finish this song
but it's still kinda cold and it's still kinda light
and i can't find my pants in the dark with no light

I'm spending the night in Jimbo's RV
it ain't got no amenities, but he lets me stay for free
ain't got no electricity for the black and white TV
spending the night in Jimbo's RV

it's parked in a lot on the outskirts of town
the cacti are green, but the grass is all brown
the sheriff comes round about 2 in the morn
i'd block out his lights, but the curtains are torn
if you were here, darling, keeping me warm
then i'd be here keeping you safe from harm
but this place needs a little more than a woman's touch
like an industrial vacuum and an acetylene torch

one day i'll have to leave this for the city so fair
i won't have the west texas wind in my hair
i'll remember these long afternoons with no cares
as i muddle my way through my state of affairs
they don't fuck around with their salsa in this town
they cook the chorizo and eggs till they're brown
happy hour starts sometime after 3
the bartender don't watch the news on TV
Track Name: Partner In Crime
steam is rising, cold front blowing in
hot springs on the banks of the rio grande
dizzy malone is out of costume
squirt bottle of bourbon adding spirit to the fumes

a feast of lights
she know the names of every star in the sky
she's lugging equipment that is twice her size
she could be my partner in crime, oh yeah

partner in crime
I can't say no when you are smiling that smile
grab the keys we're driving to la kiva tonight
you could be my partner in crime, oh yeah

the seat is so hot, it's on fire
it took only one glance to conspire
she tripped the alarm, then she tripled her charm
then she made her escape, it's a crime

hiding out in an abandoned bus
covered in glitter, she ain't making a fuss
ice on the windshield, mice on the floor
we're out of propane, but we still gotta stay warm

dizzy wants to meet that ghost, so she's sleeping on the slab
I was sent on a mission; "bring dizzy back!"
at the top of the turret she let down her facade
fingers entwined and closer to god
Track Name: A Barrel Of Monkeys
here it comes; a dream come true
it was a nightmare, I couldn't find my shoes
to turn and run - I fell into a barrel
of monkeys and reptiles; a barrel of fun

the moon came out, we started to howl
we bathed in mud on the outskirts of town
a barrel of monkeys, a barrel of fun
staring down the barrel of a slightly loaded gun

~and we sing~

it's getting mighty crowded, the air is getting thick
I reached in my bag and pulled out my favorite trick
put it to a vote; should I jump right in?
I gotta make a move, the ice is getting thin

the hounds are getting testy, ready for the chase
finally coming face to face
home again, home again; out in outer space
we need a little breathing room, from the human race

~and we sing~

hey, little darling, can I walk you home?
away from this place where the wild beasts do roam?
I'll give you my sweater, I'll give you a rose
I followed my heart, and it's you that it chose

underneath the stars, we remember who we are
so shut off that motor, abandon the car
settle your tab, let's clear out of the bar

remember a day that lives on in our dreams
a time when the fabric resisted the seams
a time when ambition had only begun
a barrel of monkeys; a barrel of fun
Track Name: Zero Star Hotel
Well, I pulled up my roots from my hometown
made my way across the burial ground
to a place with no amenities; no water, no well
there ain't no bellhop at a zero star hotel

daddy's been gone for three years now
momma's playing organ on Sunday
my boy's on his own, he's a man about town
reserve me a room in a zero star hotel

we towed that bus to the side of the bluff
strung up a tarp for when the weather gets rough
can't see the highway, but that don't mean I'm blind
I drove in my stakes with a peaceful mind

it ain't the kinda place you could call a nest
ain't the kinda place for the one I love best
it ain't quite heaven, but its a long way from hell
don't need a reservation at a zero star hotel

we towed that bus to the side of the bluff
strung up a tarp for when the weather gets rough
can't see the highway, but that don't mean I'm blind
staked my stakes with a peaceful mind

there's no guarantee I won't die here alone
in this place far away where there ain't no phones
when the sun come up you'll know where I am
close to the banks of the Rio Grande
close to the banks of the Rio Grande