Something Worth Standing For

by Andrew McKnight

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1.
Times We're Living In (free) 03:50
words & music A. McKnight, 2006©Catalooch Music, BMI Verse 1 Hurricane flags, flutter in warning the highway to high ground, unmoved all morning the least of the least, phantoms in plain view begging a ride, begging for rescue From under the bottom line, onto the TV they're suddenly seen, looking through you and me, born like each one of us, naked and crying, somehow left behind, hope sputtered and dying Scattered like matchsticks, floodwaters preordained tempest filled teacup, the driftwood of Pontchartrain call out for mercy, but there's no answer when we ask how it went so wrong Chorus Can you believe, these times we're living in (3X) Verse 2 Somehow overheated, the road to Salvation as we lose our grip with each revelation of unholy deals, fleecing the faithful shattering vows, cracking the crucible To steal from the people, was that Jesus teaching, we recite the words, but lose their meaning the princes and pundits, cloaked in theocracy while thieves in the temple, are looting our liberties Is this what it comes to, power and preference executive privilege, for or against us wrapped in the flag, discredit dissenters, while they tear down all we hold dear Chorus Can you believe, these times we're living in (4X) Can you believe
2.
These Shoes 03:26
Words & music A. McKnight, 2006©Catalooch Music, BMI Verse 1 In the darkness, in the desert searchlights glare, and there's gunshots and shouting but somehow I slipped by, only God knows why, the trucker dropped me at the Arkansas line Verse 2 Where I come from, is where the drugs run, and the men come with money and lust for honest living, I hope God's forgiving, for I left my family for this one chance at hope Chorus And I, have dreams just like you If I, let you walk in these shoes would you be here Verse 3 Scars and scratches, chemical rashes, no one trusts me to do more than clean but, I've got secrets, I've learned English someday the name on the door will be mine Chorus Break Verse 4 For all the politicians, state their positions, collecting campaign cash to build a wall behind them but I do work you won't, dirty jobs you don't, and all I ask is the right to be human Chorus twice
3.
Traditional; new words and music by Andrew McKnight, 2007©Catalooch Music, BMI Verse 1 Went across the river and I lay down to sleep went across the river and I lay down to sleep suddenly, felt shackles on my dreams Verse 2 Twenty-one links of chain around my heart twenty-one links of chain around my heart and on each link, an initial of my name Chorus It takes a worried man to sing a worried song takes a worried woman to sing a worried song I worry now, but I don’t know for how long Verse 3 I asked the lawman, tell me what I’ve done I asked the lawman, tell me what I’ve done I don’t look like you, but I have hurt no one Verse 4 I begged the judge, for mercy on my soul I begged the judge, for mercy on my soul but I got none, he sent me to the hole Chorus Guitar verse Verse 5 I woke up, a stranger in my land I woke up, in a stranger land now I believe, that I must make a stand Chorus
4.
Verse 1 An old man mowing grass on a levee drenched in sweat in the noonday sun his back seat stacked with stuff he's picked up his beat-up car barely runs Got a million miles worn upon his face but smiles as he walks my way lights a half smoked cigarette as he sits down, before I can leave he turns to say Chorus Gotta haul all you need from the river build your temple up from the floor be grateful for every gift you get and find something worth standing for Verse 2 I've been down in the shadows bout the shape I'm in, a mess made with my own hands I could write a book with the lessons I've learned and hard luck that made this man I've walked in the valley of darkness I've known heartbreak, I've known loss but I'm still standing on these two feet amazed at all they got me across Chorus Instrumental Hook Instrumental Verse Verse 3 Before he turned to leave he said “now hear me son” I could talk til my face turns blue what matters ain't the words you say it's all the little things that you do don't be afraid to help another when your time’s up there's nowhere to hide and the walls we build to keep us safe are prisons that trap us inside Chorus So haul all you need from the river build your temple up from the floor be grateful for every gift you get and find something worth standing for
5.
Verse 1 In my hour of darkness, before the morning light that's when the demons stalk me, in the dying night for all their rage and anger, fuel flaming my fears drive a man to desperation from the doubt that he hears Chorus And I crumble, like stone into sand life blows like dust from my hand Verse 2 The showdown approaches, at high noon desert sun on the barren plains of truth ain't nowhere to run they say if a man should wander, long enough in the heat and he survives the solitude, his soul he'll meet Chorus Instrumental Verse 3 The final hour is upon me, as twilight claims the sky to darkness I surrender, for no peace I find so dig my grave gently, upon a tall tree hill though my body's lost the battle, know my soul never will
6.
Ansel Adams 03:57
Words & music A. McKnight, 2007©Catalooch Music, BMI Verse 1 Will there be another Ansel Adams, American original sculptor of shadow and light will another have the patience, to await the perfect moment, when the elements and angles are just right Verse 2 Ansel Adams was no hero, cursed with pride and foible, but like any Einstein you find, take everything you can seraphim of film and format, wizard of the lens, freezing magic in a frame of stone and sand Chorus In a range of light a gentle man revealed his heart showed us treasures God in plain sight hid and in a sacred setting, shutter clicking on the wind let us see like Ansel Adams did Verse 3 A moment is so precious, in our hurry rush-rush lives seems the only way to save it, is hang it over the TV our modern generation, focused on the destination, is it still a thing of beauty, if we move too fast to see? Chorus Verse 4 I'm a man who chases shadows, been known to talk to ghosts and I strain to hear echoes of the past his reflections in still waters, spires soar into the sky all remind me that this heartbreak will not last Chorus
7.
Bridges 04:40
Words & music A. McKnight and Jon Carroll, ©2007 Catalooch Music, BMI and Ordinary World Publishing, ASCAP Verse 1 1964, the summer I was born 2 black boys went to Jesus neath the Mississippi moon knock on the door, hearts sink through the floor and a flood of mothers tears run fast for souls taken too soon while my parents far from harm, new babe safe in their arms must have wondered at the hands that twist such fate Chorus The call comes in the night, a hand fumbles for the light is it joy or tears that come with curtains drawn the river gives and takes, our hopes and our heartaches they rush by, and round the bend and then they're gone leave us letting go or holding on too long Verse 2 under this highway night, galaxies burn bright in conversation with a face I cannot see a sudden shooting star, I wonder who you are I hope the life we give you is everything you wish that you could be like my parents must have done, wonder what this world's become do I dare to think it's fair we're blessed with you Chorus The call comes in the night, a hand fumbles for the light is it joy or tears that come with curtains drawn the river gives and takes, our hopes and our heartaches they rush by, and round the bend and then they're gone leave us letting go or holding on Bridge Across the generations, every parent's trepidation the leap of faith to take our place within the flow Verse 3 I await the news, you're now a parent too as the current carries all this old man's learned despite our best intent, and fortunes heaven sent sometimes we must swim waters spanned by bridges that we've burned Chorus that call comes in the night, hands fumble for the light will joy or fear come with curtains drawn the river gives and takes, our hopes and our heartaches they rush by, and round the bend and then they're gone leave us letting go or holding on
8.
Words & music John Rickard and A. McKnight, ©2001 Short Hill Music, and Catalooch Music, BMI Verse 1 Count your blessings, don’t count your gold don’t need money, when you’re lying cold you can’t buy your way, into heaven I am told count your blessings, don’t count your gold Verse 2 Count the good deeds, that you’ve done lend your hand, to help someone Saint Peter’s got his list, he’s checking everyone count the good deeds, that you’ve done instrumental over verse Bridge In spite of all your troubles, all you need is on your back believe in all your blessings, don’t worry bout all you lack Verse 3 Count on Jesus, to be your friend stick with you, right to the end he’ll be by your side no matter how you’ve sinned count on Jesus to be your friend instrumental over bridge Verse 4 Count the lessons, you learn each day let them guide you, show you the way follow the word, you won’t go astray count the lessons, you learn each day Repeat Verse 1
9.
Traditional melody, words by A.P. Carter; Jeff Arey, ©1998, arranged by A. McKnight no lyrics, instrumental version
10.
Surveillance 03:57
Words & music A. McKnight and Les Thompson, ©2007 Catalooch Music and Les Thompson, ASCAP Verse 1 These are dangerous times, and devious minds lurk in shadows everywhere so I’ve been authorized, to search and scrutinize and you won’t even know I’m there Verse 2 All quiet along the Potomac tonight but while that power city sleeps, suspicious silhouettes among the monuments trade secrets dark and deep Chorus So I’ve got to keep you under surveillance I’ve got to know every move you make I can tell by the way you whisper when you walk I’ve gotta keep an eye on you Verse 3 With terror in our midst, your profile’s on my list shapely charm can’t erase your trail through the wi-fi café, same time every day I bet you’re getting more than mail Verse 4 To the library, so anonymously avert any attention you’d arouse slip between the stacks, cover up your tracks but I watch everywhere you browse Chorus Guitar solo over verse/fiddle solo over chorus Verse 5 You weave a tangled web, of mixed messages but I am a patient man I’m looking over, your boss’s shoulder you can’t escape my scan Chorus
11.
Words & music A. McKnight, ©1996 Catalooch Music, BMI Verse 1 The sign says George Washington lived here, now there’s a guy who had a couple of good ideas but I wonder what he’d say to see this thing he started in the state it’s in today Chorus We don’t get our way, we’ll go to court and that’s just fine we'd love to know our neighbors but haven’t got the time I don’t know if it’d be better anyhow, if George Washington lived here now Verse 2 Driving in my car the other day, a rich lady in a Jag she cut me off and flipped the bird my way there's anger everywhere we turn we've got no need to listen when we've nothing left to learn Chorus Break Verse 3 They say we don’t need the family farms no more, we’ll subdivide, suburbanize, we’ll plant seeds and grow chain stores locked safely in our cul-de-sacs, we're hollering at the TV and the TV’s hollering back Chorus
12.
The Fox 03:56
Traditional
13.
Cedars 04:06
Words & music A. McKnight, ©2007 Catalooch Music, BMI Verse 1 The unmarked blacktop winds back in time, remembered ways I've known and left behind the signs have changed but the way is clear it's been so long since I've been here Memories point past that sycamore tree make a left where the Miller's red barn used to be the gravel gently gives beneath my wheels and I remember how it feels Chorus A rusted tractor rests among the cedar trees a pause between the past and what's to be ten thousand houses don't leave any space this was home, when this was a different place Verse 2 These windows watched three generations grow old silent statue stands to times long ago when they say you can't go home again, I know what they mean I still see those fields of green Chorus Verse 3 Now open red clay wounds weep every time it rains castles grow instead of acres of grain I wonder if those kids will know where food comes from and if someday they'll ask where we have gone
14.
Safe Home 04:06
Words & music A. McKnight, ©2007 Catalooch Music, BMI Verse 1 In the shadow of this dark mountain, where the sun but rarely shines blessings fair, are hard to come by, in the cold black damp Kentucky mines For there ain't nothing to hold our young ones, since this mountain's heart ran out of gold there's no future here in this holler, so we wave when they leave down that road Chorus But the same moon shines wherever you are So I'll listen when the night wind starts to moan I'll light a candle when darkness falls and pray til you're safe home Verse 2 Mountain boys they love their country, and they never shy from a fight but it's so hard, to let our daughters, answer the call to glory's light For every mother hopes her children, will someday have more than she’s known, but in these hard hills, hope is precious, and a better life is a gambler's throw Chorus Instrumental Verse Instrumental Chorus Verse 3 My only daughter gave her body, when duty called, to desert sands now the bloodroot and dogwood blossoms, can't hide the work of war's evil hands Chorus But the same moon shines wherever you are So I'll listen when the night wind starts to moan I'll light a candle when darkness falls and pretend, that you're safe home Chorus
15.
Words & music A. McKnight and Randy Barrett, ©2007 Catalooch Music and Jolly Mountain Music, BMI Verse 1 There's a hole in the sky, where the sun streams through as the storm gives way to its flame where thunder and tears have soaked green earth and the wind still whispers your name Verse 2 There's a hole in the choir, where your voice once rang but the melody sustains in God’s Great House, the notes linger on while the wind still whispers your name Verse 3 There's a hole in the flag, two boots turned back twenty one guns of honor and pain a purple heart and a silver star but the wind still whispers your name Verse 4 And a whole world grieves, in the gathering night a mother's loss is the angel's gain and a new star gleams, and flickers to life while the wind still whispers your name while the wind still whispers your name
16.
Original words and music Robert Johnson, © 1990 MPCA King Of Spades (SESAC), new words and melody A. McKnight Verse 1 Came to a crossroads, no sign marks the way Came to a crossroads, no sign marks the way there's great darkness gathering, I know I can't stay Verse 2 Stand at the crossroads, don't know where to turn Stand at the crossroads, don't know where to turn feel the heat at my back, while our house burns Verse 3 We're leaving this crossroads, a mighty hill to climb Leaving this crossroads, a mighty hill to climb Set these burdens down, never look behind Guess I'll have to trust my soul

about

"Stretching across the landscape of American folk music is a highway paved by Guthrie and Dylan... now Virginia native Andrew McKnight takes his turn smoothing down the blacktop" (Performing Songwriter)

"has complete command of a variety of styles, but his overall approach brings to mind the Indigo Girls: impassioned, acoustic, rooted in folk but influenced by rock. He’s got an instant classic in 'These Shoes,' a sharp appraisal of how mainstream America treats the immigrant worker." (Victory Review)

"can also evoke spooky backwoods Appalachian ghosts with his bluesier numbers...adds up to one fine album of insightful music" (The Muse's Muse)

"With this outstanding new album...continues to enlighten, as well as entertain.... pleasing vocals complement well-crafted lyrics and strong melodies" (Palo Alto Daily News)

* * * * * * * * * *
Recorded with the help of longtime friend and original Nitty Gritty Dirt Band member Les Thompson, Something is a coherent and compelling musical portrait of contemporary America while drawing inspiration from legendary musicians like The Carter Family and Woody Guthrie. Spanning haunting blues, feisty anthems, rustic folk, and a bit of swing, the 16 cuts showcase McKnight painting many colors with his dynamic and supple tenor voice, his tasteful slide and flatpicked acoustic guitar, and the occasional rocking Americana electric guitar.

Something reflects the maturity of a veteran songpoet and seasoned musical artisan. He focuses on threads in the American tapestry through the lens of illegal immigrants, of ordinary people clinging to lost treasures of their past, and of those praying for loved ones to safely return from war. Notable are the rollicking Cajun-meets-Clapton title cut, “Times We’re Living In,” a haunting indictment of the forces that coalesced behind Katrina, “Wind Whispers Your Name,” an a capella elegy for a fallen soldier, and “Bridges,” a beautiful meditation on the cycles on parenthood co-written with Mary Chapin Carpenter’s keyboardist Jon Carroll. And honoring the “folk process,” McKnight updated lyrics to the traditional “Worried Man Blues” as well as to Robert Johnson’s “Crossroads,” the spooky solo slide blues that closes the album.

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released February 1, 2008

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Andrew McKnight Lincoln

Nationally-acclaimed singer/songwriter and guitarist celebrates rural America, weaves masterfully crafted songs, humorous stories and poetic drama into a musical soundscape sketched with shades of Appalachia, tasteful slide and jazzy blues, feisty anthems, and rustic folk. 5 solo CDs heard on many public & community radio, plus NPR "Art of the Song" & "River City Folk" and XM/Sirius. ... more

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