Thursday, July 28, 2011

"Got My Walkin' Boots On..."

Last year I wrote a POST on Willis Earl Beal, the most talented singer/songwriter I’ve ever had the pleasure of playing music with. Willis had to leave Albuquerque before our little 3-piece band was able to record any material or even play a show, but this week the Chicago Reader published a piece on Willis and his music and I think it’s well worth having a look at it. Just check out this quote: “If all goes well, sometime this Thursday evening he'll perform at the Jackson el stop, either on the Red Line, on the Blue Line, or in the tunnel between them.” There may even be one or two quotes from yours truly. CLICK HERE for the story.

Of course, reading about Willis is interesting, but it’s his music that really speaks volumes. The article mentions a 200-copy "Willis Earl Beal Special Collection" box set + 17-song CD that will be available through FOUND MAGAZINE and, since I don’t know the track listing myself (all Willis told me was “don’t worry, all your favorite stuff is on there”), I’m hesitant to post more music here in case it’s on the disc. So, what I’m going to do is post the lyrics to a song we worked-up and that, as far as I know, Willis has never recorded. Just imagine some Steve Cropper guitar, Booker T. Jones on organ, maybe the Memphis Horns adding a little brass, all over a sweet soul voice. Alright, maybe OUR musical accompaniment wasn’t that good, but Willis deserves that kind of treatment. Seriously.

Same Ol’ Tears

Got my walking boots on, destination in mind;
Said I’m goin’ back east, while I follow the signs;
Hooked into a woman, ‘cause she treats me well;
I come a-runnin’ when she rings the bell.

Hangin’ onto her dress, and I can’t release;
Tryin’ to go to sleep, but I can’t get no peace;
Well, I’m a-gazin’ at the moon while I pedal the bike;
I got a caffeine high but I don’t feel right.

Well, everybody knows somethin’ I don’t know;
That old idiot wind, everywhere it blows;
I feel a change comin’ on, coursin’ through my veins;
Won’t be long ‘til I’m gone and they all know my name.

I shed the same ol’ tears;
I shed the same ol’ tears;
‘Til my eyes don’t cry no more.

Two o’clock in the morning, up the hill I rode;
To shack up on the sly in my woman’s abode;
She goes back to bed but I’m still awake;
I’ve got this feeling of dread that I just can’t shake.

My brain is floating in a tank, being poked with a stick;
All this travelin’ back and forth, y’know, it’s makin’ me sick;
I hope the light don’t come, I hope the sun don’t rise;
I hope the shadow of death will leave and cover the skies.

But if it don’t then I’ll wander ‘til I walk with a cane;
Then I’ll go right insane, ‘cause I will never be tamed.

Shed the same ol’ tears;
I shed the same ol’ tears;
I shed the same ol’ tears;
I shed the same ol’ tears;
‘Til my eyes don’t cry no more;
‘Til my eyes don’t cry no more.

The photograph at the top is of the Aztec Motel, which was built in 1931. That's the Silver Moon Lodge in the middle shot; it was built in the 1950's. Both these motels were along old Route 66 in Albuquerque and now both, like Willis Earl Beal himself (bottom), can't be found in Albuquerque anymore.


Anonymous said...

jmhouse said...

Well, that is interesting, Anonymous. I did not know about that version. I'll have to ask Willis if he did. Ha!

Thanks! JM