Robin Red

by Paul Otteson

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1.
(free) 04:15
You’ll understand when I go I was broken by the first laugh City lights and booze on floor of my hotel room And no, I won’t dance anymore Not for money or for lust This train is bound for land of rust Oh Destiny, I know we’re short on time But would you sing for me A song to make it feel like you’re mine A song to make this less of a lie A song.. It never fades from the screen With a weight beyond my burdens Kid off the street grabbed my hand, said he really wanted to be like me But no I’m pulling back, like a tide gone far enough Chase the wind if it lets me toward the tower of sinless love Oh Destiny, I know we’re short on time But would you sing for me A song to make it feel like you’re mine A song to make this less of a lie A song.. So when you see an old shade of me Just remember it’s another story All those Saturday nights are now laid to rest Don’t smile like a number, keep on your dress I need a mystery and a dove To keep me on the path of lettin’ up Oh Destiny, I know we’re short on time But would you sing for me A song to make it feel like you’re mine A song to make this less of a lie A song..
2.
When you took the reins Dealt the pain Followed fire, and Never walked away I knew the ropes might tear I knew my palms might wear But I’d hold as long as you would stay Lion with the matted down hair Broken now, and beyond repair Still your roar does keep the crowd at bay How you stake this park and make these hearts Penny up for all the maddening sounds Load the tracks and don’t look back There are skies yet to see the banner you found May the summer pass for this strength won’t last All the while the branches empty sway Let us journey south, Sarasota’s House Is a dream I can’t begin to shake How you stake this park and make these hearts Penny up for all the maddening sounds Load the tracks and don’t look back There are skies yet to see the banner you found How you stake this park and make these hearts Penny up for all the maddening sounds Load the tracks and don’t look back There are skies yet to see the banner you found When you took the reins Dealt the pain Followed fire, and Never walked away I knew the ropes might tear I knew my palms might wear But I’d hold as long as you would stay
3.
02:59
It’s cold And the dogs are hungry, hurting Hexed now as they roam And how they tip the scale Knowing not the way back home Bloody eyes of torment fixed upon the silent road I’m told That snow is death’s bed calling For a body to untoe And his blankets burn Hotter than the victor’s shore Heavy-handed is the knock upon my weary door How hard the wind doth blow How far I’ve yet to go He’s near The bells are ringing cross the sadness of the sky How he pushes on Careless of the lonely ride Teeth grinding for the chance to bring this to a fight I fear That what I’m taking will be painful when it’s mine Until my heart it thaws And the limbs of time unwind Hold steady for the victory I will always ride How calm my pack does fly No fall could break their stride Push on with all your might Our bounds are not in sight
4.
I knew her well She was sixteen, I was twelve Through heaven’s breeze and lilac trees I met her glance As she pursed her lips at the drinking well Oh I could tell She’d always be The song, the sky, the vision of my heart I’ll not forget the day October of thirty-eight I turned the dial and faded smile When I heard the news Of the martians plan to seal our fate With heat rays And tripods strange Still my fear of death Could not remove her image from mind I ran at once to find My darling Adeline To speak her name without restraint Confess my love Warn her family of the threat above On peering in I saw her undergown On barest feet she danced the crickets proud My presence sensed the doorway soon defined With questioned look my darling Adeline Oh when she asked my name I stood in silent shame But seeing clear the danger near I spoke at once But when I cried “the end of days” She didn’t faze Nor find it strange Then with kindest eyes She kissed me on the cheek and ever smiled
5.
03:08
The flames, the flames Always free me from this town and from this life And old affections, they are scattered, pale, and numb to pleasure The sand, the sea For a beacon, won’t you steal into the night? Your emerald eyes, my treasure Leave the bonds of love behind you I will form this rock With cold steel as the lock Though lost is my soul I will make this whole The road it knows Lacking shape and order withers where it goes And on its final turn, I pray to failing gods I’ll find you My home, my home Now licked by tired blaze is nature to the bone And all around me measures of my life alone in leasure I will carve this land Of charred oak with restless hands Though lost is my soul I will make this whole I will carve this land Of charred oak with restless hands Though lost is my soul I will make this whole Though lost is my soul I will make this whole
6.
He was all I had in Doug County Saved my skin like family When trouble came, came with a fight He threw his fists with Clemens’ might Threw his fists with Clemens’ might So, when he stretched his golden wings I had to follow, had to bring The coin I took from father’s drawer The hope to finally leave this shore Hope to finally leave this shore How I loved him, how I hated to let my arrow go Through the clouds and over mountains A high and lonesome home Well, I couldn’t part, nor turn the page They had my number, knew my age But I saw his lightning, felt his fire Wish I could be who I admire Wish I could be who I admire When I heard the news my hands did shake The bomb went off, mistakes were made With no one to accept the blame I looked above and cursed god’s name Looked above and cursed god’s name Looked above and cursed god’s name How I loved him, how I hated to let my arrow go Through the clouds and over mountains A high and lonesome home How I loved him, how I hated to let my arrow go Through the clouds and over mountains A high and lonesome home
7.
Let the hands strike away To another time, to another day Where she’s the letter carved inside my Worried mind, faded smile No evidence, no sharp denial Your voice it calls the soul and sings Oh, pull me Down deep Til soft blue Becomes a truly impossible hue Before my eyes, before my years The vision of a heart appears And how it beats beyond its measure Still in vain, or though I feel As if it’s pulse was born to heal From sorrows tale and lady fair Oh, pull me Down deep Til soft blue Becomes a truly impossible hue I was before and will again Be the voice of a broken man Who lost his dove through no fault but his Reckless style, budding heart Many fails from many starts A tribute to what always could have been and what will never be Pull me Down deep Til soft blue Becomes a truly impossible hue Pull me Down deep Til soft blue Becomes a truly Becomes a truly Becomes a truly impossible hue
8.
Chains that were made to last Bind my strength hard to the past Keep my breath for a second more I’ve not yet found the secret door Hold, hold, hold, hold Hold your story I don’t know when this will weather my heart Face the crowd and smile My darling My your hand on the hammer never use it’s spark Funny how the lies you tread Find their way into my bed Cherry-toothed with knuckles white Hard to tell if you’re one to fight Hold, hold, hold, hold I’ll never fail, it’s not my card All my locks picked in the dark And when your science thinks me dead I promise not to rest head Hold, hold, hold, hold Hold your story I don’t know when this will weather my heart Face the crowd and smile My darling My your hand on the hammer never use it’s spark
9.
How ‘bout a word of advice You were always one to give I’ve managed plenty of times But I’ve forgotten how to live And I can’t sleep for days and days and days You offered plenty of views You told me that I’m covered in doubt You said trust it is a lesson of time It seems yours will never run out And I can’t sleep for days and days and days I try so hard but I just can’t see your face And what I’d give just to hear your voice call my name You’re my empty refrain And so, many miles from our home I’m stuck with nothing but the regret That I content in pushing stones Forgot just why you left And I can’t sleep for days and days and days I try so hard but I just can’t see your face And what I’d give just to hear your voice call my name You’re my empty refrain
10.
How can I connect the strings That bind the errs my fortune brings Like a ruby small beneath the stone Can I bleed beyond this heavy home Yeah we all need a clue How to make our peace and our souls to soothe Give me one heart to prove All my wrongs have been construed To relive those days, you know what I would do Just give me one more heart to prove I was raised on timeless stains A hidden sun, the sugarcane And what led me out the door to find you It wasn’t pure or even kind, you need to know But I’m gonna change my tone Settle all the debts of a man who spent his life all alone Give me one heart to prove All my wrongs have been construed To relive those days, you know what I would do Just give me one more heart to prove If it came down to a single thing What would it take, what could I sing? Don’t tell me it’s beyond my time I need a hope, I need a holy sign Give me one heart to prove All my wrongs have been construed To relive those days, you know what I would do Just give me one more heart to prove Just give me one more heart to prove Just give me one more heart to prove

about

ROBIN RED, Paul Otteson’s follow-up to 2011’s February Fables, is a collection of songs inspired by the unsung failures of our past. With cautious hope, a mix of darkened characters search for redemption in a world bound against them; unconvinced their time has run out. Blurring the line between chamber-folk and Americana, Robin Red challenges this frozen landscape with soaring melodies, tortured love songs, and the promise of spring.

credits

released May 30, 2012

All songs written and recorded by Paul Otteson

All songs mixed and mastered by Nathan Edwards

Layout, design, and illustration by Luke Bassuener

Paul Otteson - Vocals, Guitar, Piano
Jeremiah Nelson - Electric Guitar
Tom McCarty - Upright Bass
Luke Bassuener - Drums
Whitney Mann - Vocals on 1. 9
Ryan Casey - Vocals on 10

Recorded at SHS Studio

Special thanks to Ryan Casey, Andrew Hartman, and Nathan Edwards

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Paul Otteson Madison, Wisconsin

A Midwestern Folk style, blending lyrical prowess with seasoned arrangements; wrapped in a cloak of beautiful harmony.

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