Songs For The Family

by Bill Lee

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1.
2.
04:35
3.
4.
04:02
5.
6.
03:12
7.
06:10
8.
9.
04:40

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

license

all rights reserved

tags

about

Bill Lee Hudson, New York

Singer, Songwriter, Stay-At-Home Dad /// formerly Megafortress

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Track Name: I Said A Prayer
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
Track Name: Family
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
Track Name: Wandering Child
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
Track Name: Fallen
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
Track Name: Make Him Proud
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
Track Name: Motel
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
Track Name: Little One
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
Track Name: Long Slow Death
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
Track Name: He's Gone
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

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