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MP3 John Lyle - Cool Fire

Soulful, folk-blues, roots-rock performances featuring poetic lyrics set to memorable melodies.

10 MP3 Songs
POP: Folky Pop, BLUES: Blues Vocals



Details:
Headed for a career as an English professor in the mid 1960’s, John Lyle was ‘broadsided’ by Bob Dylan and The Beatles. His degree went out the window, and so did he, playing in a series of bands and then performing on Canadian network television and radio as a solo act. He was also signed to two record labels during this era, but realized that because of his highly sensitive nature he was not cut out for the performing life.

John returned to his home in the Vancouver area, and devoted himself to his family, supporting them with a career that may have been more dangerous than the perfomance stage. He became a postman. John Lyle’s wonderful body of work is evidence of a life lived on the streets and in the home, filled with all the love and loss and joy and despair that are part and parcel of being alive. The songs are vital, not written to imitate a commercial trend or to fulfil a contract, but to reflect the intensity of experience and to remain sane.

‘Magnificent!’ The late Robert Altman’s word for John Lyle’s music,

''I like you, John!'' - the late Pat Paulsen.

''John Lyle will take you gently to your safe place, and then sneak up on you with a song as uncompromisingly ferocious as a grizzly in a maternity ward.’ Dennis Albo, in his reality novel ‘One Bullet Left,’

''Wonderful, odd genius...I hate to think what they''d find if they opened up his head''-American comedian Heywood Banks.

COOL FIRE lyrics-

WHEN THE WIND GETS HIGH

The carousel is finally winding down
They’ve pulled up stakes
And scraped the makeup off the clown
Not even time can mend this broken-hearted town

I would run away and quit the circus now
If I could overcome the things that make me proud
I would stand so tall my head would be a cloud

I’ve been counting backward in my sleep
Breaking down the horror of belief
I’ve been laughing at things that give me grief

I’m gonna shave my head
And put my hat on backwards
They say that works
When the wind gets high

You and me, we’re lost inside a bud
Dizzy with a fever in the blood
Let me close my eyes
And sink into the flood

My old red rooster crows at dawn
When everything I’ve prayed against is gone
He leans his back against the fence
And sings a song

I’m gonna shave my head
And put my hat on backwards
They say that works
When the wind gets high

WALK IT ON DOWN

Scientiologists are coming, there’s a Morman at the door
There’s a Witness counting heads but he don’t know what for

The glory train has left the track, it’s barrelling down the street
Scaring the bejesus out of everyone it meets

Walk it on down, walk it on down
Walk it on down to the best guy in town

The sound of distant thunder makes him dream about his past
Just how many blunders can one guy amass?

He searches for his Bible in the rushes, sweet and low
A desperate guy is liable to find anywhere to go

Walk it on down, walk it on down
Walk it on down to the best guy in town

If I told you the dye was cast you’d laugh into my face
You’d write my name upon the wind and turn another page

The book of life is filled with lies claiming to be true
I’ll bet you any money the biggest lie is you

Walk it on down, walk it on down
Walk it on down to the best guy in town

A DOG LIES DOWN SOMETIME

You scream around the corner, like Little Jack Horner
Who knows what’s down the line?
It’s a stone-cold fact, they’ll be bringing you back
In a box of yellow pine

We all have our moments, but yours takes an hour
If it does not take a day
I’d cut you some slack, but it’s down the track
Where my best intentions stay

Meet your maker, he’s an undertaker
With an old Econoline
He’s got a black pomade, a Tibetan maid,
And he loves his life of crime

You run around in circles like a dog in a circus
But a dog lies down sometime
If you swear at the moon and it breaks in two
You can take it as a sign

Scrape the haggis off the wall at the lesbians’ ball
Take your big foot off my throat
Write a letter to the Pope, we gotta legalize dope
And don’t forget to vote

Meet your maker, he’s an old heart-breaker
With his own line of clothes
He’s got a straw-bale shack, by the railroad track
And he breathes through his nose

You run around in circles like a dog in a circus
But a dog lies down sometime
If you swear at the moon and it breaks in two
You can take it as a sign

DO WHALES HAVE SCALES?

Do whales have scales?
Do they go ‘do-re-me’ for so long?
Or, are they the avante coast guard?
Do the go ‘do
re
me’?

Do whales tell tales?
Do they meet and sound and then go ‘round
To Namu’s bar and shoot the bull
Until the cows come home?

Of the many mammals in history
Could there be one smarter than me?
Was it wise for whales to surmise
They’d be better off back in the sea?

I gotta know, do whales feel frail
Do they start to blubber
Like a real land-lubber
When they think about the journey’s end
Then, do they get the bends?

Of the many mammals in history
Could there be one smarter than me?
Was it wise for whales to surmise,
Was it shrewd for whales to conclude,
Was it bright for whales to think they might
Be better off back in the sea?

TOO MUCH COMPASSION

The biggest bully in the yard
Could always put me off my guard
By pulling out a hanky with his hand
This guy’s not half so bad, he’s got a cold just like I had
And some sisters, and a mother with a womb

Then he’d turn into a viper, and I’d wish I’d stayed hyper
As a seismograph about to overload
Lift the veil of paranoia and the devil’s damn destroyers
Zero in and aim to blow me off the globe

Too much compassion can kill a nervous man
And too much pity’s bound to drown him on dry land
Tender-hearted heartlessness is how it all began
It takes two to tangle in this cock-eyed caravan

Trillions of gifts beneath the tree
And there was only one for me
Just a cap gun, but it really rang the bell
I’d wanted it like sin, since my last pistol’d packed it in
Brand new, it bit the dust, and rusted in the rain

Then somebody said, aw, honey,
We just could not find the money to give you your due
That broke me up inside
Drop the veil of paranoia, and the devil’s damn destroyers
Zero in and aim to blow me off the globe

Too much compassion can kill a nervous man
And too much pity’s bound to drown him on dry land
Tender-hearted heartlessness is how it all began
It takes two to tangle in this cock-eyed caravan

NOBODY''S BABY (Garry Macpherson)

Well, she was nobody’s baby
She wasn’t even anybody’s child
I met her in her garden on my way to kindergarten
And I said, ain’t you no one’s love at all
She said, no, no, no I’m only waiting
Like we children gotta do
I’m nobody’s baby, I’m nobody’s child
I’m all alone like you

Well, she was nobody’s lover
She wasn’t even anybody’s whore
She was walkin’ through the door, though
From the time that she was four
And she heard the hobo’s call
She spent a lot of time at her window
Lookin’ through her window pane
Saying, I’m nobody’s baby, I’m nobody’s child
To me it’s all the same

She was nobody’s honky-tonk lady
Nobody’s pride and joy
I met her in the ocean, when I took a secret potion
I said, I’d like to be your boy
She said, no, no, no I’m only waiting
Like we children have to do
I’m nobody’s baby, I’m nobody’s child
I’m all alone like you
I’m all alone and blue

BLIND LOVE

Evil forces gather in the half-light
Dark with blood, but only in the mind
In the cold desert bloom
There’s nothing left but room
For pride in knowing love is blind

Tongues so thick,
They cannot speak of weather
Bodies ache, with things they have not done
To see what is true, and have to live it too
Is a fate that should not befall anyone

I’ve lived most of my life paralyzed
Pretending I can see
When I’ve been looking through
The wrong set of eyes
When I can just let go
Like an angel in the snow
I’ll be the King of the Cowboys
On this sweet little pony of mine

OLD HONTANA ROAD

Inga said a mouthful when she said
I could get her back after she’s dead
You should hear what people say
About her now she’s gone
But I will take the high road from now on

Rain comes down like bullets from above
Money can’t buy this kind of love

Some old twister, spinning like a top
The way he moves, you think he’ll never stop
Just when you think you know someone
You find out they’re like you
Living in a room without a view

Sun burns down on Old Hontana Road
Turn your head, and you won’t see them go
You won’t see scarecrows smile
At nothing in the dirt
You won’t see them leave a world of hurt

I WON''T BE LONESOME WHEN I''M GONE (J. Lyle & J. Murray)

I may have been in China
When you came to break the news
Trying to give me something I can use
I remember kind of peeling back into my blues
Fetching for a pail to fill my shoes

All graven images, from sea to shining sea
Another smiling Christ, smiling back at me
Woke up this morning with a hammer and a tong
I won’t be lonesome when I’m gone

I’m gonna backslide ‘til I find an open door
Backslide ‘til I can’t backslide no more
Every cold idea that thinks it knows the score
Don’t seem to mean so much no more

It must have been a foggy night, when you fell for me
Everything you could forget, you managed not to see
Woke up this morning with a hammer and a tong
I won’t be lonesome when I’m gone

One hand on the shovel, one foot in the grave
Watch another breath go down the drain
If you see my double, ask him if he has a name
And if he’s taking rest inside the shade

Everything you love in me, you hide inside yourself
Turn it outside over, you don’t need no one’s help
Woke up this morning with a hammer and a tong
I won’t be lonesome when I’m gone

SPARKLING RIVER

Like a faded leaf, hanging by a thread
I blow into the wind and tumble down like I was dead
I say I’m not a thief but I won’t stand in the light
So you can wash my face and give my empty mouth a bite

How can I be angry with someone so nice
Are my fingers made of silver, is my heart made of ice?
I hide beside the fire with tears in my eyes
Mourning the desire I’ve learned to despise

You know where I’m going, you know where I’ve been
You know which wind’s blowing and you know it’s not a sin

You make a good sheepdog moving me along
All tangled up in what don’t last long
On the outskirts of the meadow, in the shadow of fright
Crazy wolves are mending fences in the starry, starry night

You know where I’m going, you know where I’ve been
You know which wind’s blowing and you know it’s not a sin

There is a sparkling river flowing through my head
Bringing understanding who I thought I was is dead
Rollin’ and ‘a tumblin,’ through wind, and stone and sea
Laughing like a baby when a baby is free

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