Songs For The Family

by Bill Lee

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1.
I said a prayer I was praying for you to be there And looking good All dressed in blue Like you said you would do Now I'm a fool Standing out in the rain all alone And feeling blue Thinking you Never meant to be true Could it be that you have gone away again And left me with my sin And my anger too I know you could never love another man Try the best you can He won't do You were the heart of my world Now it's falling apart again And the wheel in my head Is spinning forever I know the ways of your love Oh your love is loose But I still I still want you I said a prayer I was praying for you to be there And looking good All dressed in blue Like you said you would do
2.
Family 04:35
I have the greatest love For my family A father gone too soon But still he moves through me My mother born of reason Most beautiful I've ever seen Her love will keep me safe More than I'll ever need But when she shot That bird out of the sky Like that bird I knew I could die Cut down by a love that was wound too tight She can say he's never coming home But I will never learn From what I see I've got nothing better to believe So I count the days awaiting his return And I know he just couldn't see all the love that he had But I don't know why and I Still believe that he will be there in the end Oh I know he will try But when he took His word out of our lives For that word I knew I would die I'm bound by a love that pulls so tight I have the greatest love For my family A father gone too soon But still he moves through me My mother born of reason Most beautiful I've ever seen Her love will keep me safe More than I'll ever need But when she shot That bird out of the sky Like that bird I knew I could die Cut down by a love that was wound too tight
3.
You're the one with the loaded gun And the law on your side I've been running from you all my life But I can't hide And I'm the one with my head hanging low 'Cause there is someplace else I'd rather go Oh a wandering child Is all I'll ever be Just a wandering child Is all I'll ever be In your eyes I believe But maybe I will be the greatest one you've ever seen Been so long since I lost my way Don't remember what I'm trying to find All I know is when I turn around You'll be following right behind And Lord I don't know why You can't even shake my hand Am I a better man Than you can stand Oh a wandering child Is all I'll ever be Just a wandering child Is all I'll ever be In your eyes I believe But maybe I will be the greatest one you've ever seen Either lock me up or let me be 'Cause I cannot take this anymore Always waiting for the day I see you coming Just to break down my front door Making up some awful thing I never did And telling everyone I'm better dead Oh a wandering child Is all I'll ever be Just a wandering child Is all I'll ever be In your eyes I believe But maybe I will be the greatest one you've ever seen
4.
Fallen 04:02
I have fallen Flat on my back Lay here and watch The sun burn me black I'm just waiting To be risen again And lay by the side of my love Two idols Burning bright on the sky I don't believe You know I have died But I'm calling From the other side I know that my love will arrive I've been down into darkness And down into hate Over and over But I know that today I will be climbing The ladder To your sweet embrace And I hope that I never wake Again I'm slip sliding away I won't be back again And if I am I know I will break And get caught up So caught up In my evil ways And I don't want your heart to break I've been down into darkness And down into hate Over and over But I know that today I will be climbing The ladder To your sweet embrace And I hope that I never wake Again
5.
I'm afraid that I have joined A growing list of liars And I will only phone it in When I can even try, try, try And maybe you can live In hiding for a while Disappear from me completely And keep me from the child And I will end my life In a small town Find a boss who treats me friendly And make him proud
6.
Motel 03:12
Wake up in the morning with the room on fire Some pretty girl is calling me an ugly liar I know this is my bed, but it don't seem right Can't remember anything past Friday night So I, oh I just smile And pray that my memory returns to me after a while And hope that she never caught my name Been living in this old motel about six weeks Ain't nothing but the price of it that can't be beat Just four blue walls and an old TV And that's what I'll be doing if you're looking for me Oh I, I just drink And when I need someone to talk to There's a mirror above the bathroom sink It tells me I've fallen all the way Left my wife and children in disarray Said some things a better man just would not say Did some things a good man would never do And now I know that evil is something true Oh I, I've been blessed With the weight of expectation Lifted mercifully off my chest And now I just sit around and wait For the end of these glory days Waiting on someone to walk in and take it all away I'm waiting on someone to walk in and take it all away Just waiting for the Good Lord to walk in and take all of my pain away
7.
Little One 06:10
When that man comes Calling again Death's on the wind For us all little one So you better run And hide where you can And don't take his hand If he asks little one Mother and me One day we will meet You in the sweet bye and bye little one But now you must go and grow on your own And take what you can from this world Little one of mine He'll promise you everything And he'll offer you light He'll promise to carry you home Through the dark black night If I could have seen All the trouble it would bring To call on his name For just a day little one I wouldn't go and just give away my soul Looking for the help I'd never needed before His word is spreading wide But he's a demon in disguise Hiding in the fields along the way Waiting for that one mistake He knows you will make And that'll be the day You gave away all you had my little one Oh he promised me everything And he offered me light He promise to carry me home Through the dark back night Jesus come and get your son He's burning down your kingdom May all his ruin be undone And your good word restored Though we're not the chosen ones It's our prayers that you're hearing And all the work that we have done It cannot be ignored I still believe Though we have been deceived There is a place for you and me In the glory still to come in the glory still to come in the glory still to come
8.
I passed a house And standing in the door Was a man who looked just like me And never have I been so sure That all these wicked little thoughts inside my head Are a part of someone else's dream So I called out Won't you let me into that house And he turned his back on me And then I heard him say Dear boy don't you know This life ain't the one where you succeed We're all living our own histories So I'll just wait For a voice that will carry me home I'm tired of drifting on the open sea And when I die, I'll die a long slow death Waiting for A little sympathy I'm left praying for that man to change his mind And take my hand 'Cause I love him but he don't love me And I agree That he don't need to hear my reasons But I need him To forgive me For living on my knees So I'll just wait For a voice that will carry me home I'm tired of drifting on the open sea And when I die, I'll die a long slow death Waiting for A little sympathy And when I die, I'll die a long slow death Waiting for A little sympathy
9.
He's Gone 04:40
Early in the morning he calls Just to tell me he's gone And the weight of his voice falls so heavy On my mind When he was a child I promised him that I would be strong Well I don't know if I'll succeed But I'll try I don't know where the wind will take him And I don't know if this world will break him Oh still it's so plain to see That this boy depends on me To set him free So I Oh I believe That my love will be redeemed And he will be there for me When I ride All the way To the end Early in the evening I wake up And I am alone With the freedom that I only dreamed of For so long But a house with one lonely old soul Is it still a home Or does it all just fade away Now that he is gone I don't know where the wind will take me But I know that these days won't break me As long as I keep a light Shining out into the night For him to see So I Oh I believe That my love will be redeemed And he will be there for me When I ride All the way To the end

about

Bill Lee (né Gillim) made increasingly dark devotional music as Megafortress for nearly a decade. Now he replaces the moniker with his married name for his new record Songs For The Family— a collection of noir folk/country songs populated by lost fathers, exhausted mothers, wayward children, and fearful lovers. Backed by drummer Otto Hauser (Sharon Van Etten, Vetiver), keyboardist Tyler Wood (Luke Temple, Elvis Perkins) and bassist Terence Murren, Lee’s beautiful, weary baritone and finger-picked guitar ward off the ghosts that haunt his new life as a stay-at-home father.

Lee bought a guitar just before the birth of his first son. He knew that a new baby meant little time to disappear into an ambient track-making computer stupor. Finding inspiration in the melancholic songs of Mickey Newbury, Willie Nelson, and Fred Neil, Lee spent the next three years writing songs touching on the hopes, fears and failures of fatherhood. Songs For The Family combines the dark mysticism of Megafortress with a deceptively simple, stripped down Americana. The result is a music both familiar and disorienting, a classic American folk music refracted through a black rainbow prism.

credits

released November 15, 2019

Bill Lee - vocals & guitar, alto saxophone on 6, keyboards on 5 & 8
Tyler Wood - keyboards & percussion
Terence Murren - bass
Otto Hauser - drums & percussion

with
Emily Ritz - vocals on 7 & 9
Al Carlson - soprano saxophone on 8

produced by Tyler Wood and Bill Lee
recorded & mixed by Tyler Wood at Sauce Farm in Catskill, NY
mastered by Joe Lambert at JLM in Jersey City, NJ
all songs by Bill Lee
cover photo by Jersey Walz

Papasan Recordings © 2019

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Bill Lee Red Hook, New York

sometimes Megafortress

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