Traveler

by Andrew McKnight

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about

"a touch of traditional ... country ... Celtic ... contemporary ... In that sweet spot, McKnight combines them all to spin his magic"
Folk and Acoustic Music Exchange

“a distinct and refreshing voice ... very enjoyable.”
All Music Guide

“An impressive debut filled with mature, confident songwriting and tight musicianship”
Norwich Bulletin
* * * * * * * * * *

The debut CD from one of the nation’s most promising “story songwriters” introduced folk fans around the world to Andrew’s literate stories and vivid imagery, all wrapped in his smooth expressive tenor and standout guitar playing.

Traveler features some of Andrew’s best-loved songs, including “Dancing in the Rain” about the plight of an Iowa farm family (and the first recording with his two friends who would join forces years later to form Dang Varmints!), a love song from the Old Man Mississippi to his lady love “Atchafalaya”, and “Magnolia Tree” detailing his own escape from corporate America. Other highlights include “Highland County Romp” a gorgeous guitar duet with virtuoso Seth Austen, the old-time/folk tinged “Gatlinburg”, and the gentle small-town country/Americana feel of “Still Home to Me”.

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released August 1, 1995

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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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Track Name: Magnolia Tree
Words & music A. McKnight, ©1995 Waves of Mountains/Catalooch Music, BMI

Verse 1
Take me out coach, put another better man in
Can’t wear this uniform, can’t keep up with this runnin’
There’s another suit in line, walkin’ through the door
Shiny briefcase in his hand, an unsuspecting corporate whore

Verse 2
Ah they pay me well, that’s for sure, but let’s set the record straight
A balding fat man in a tie, well that’s someone else’s fate
I don’t know where it went wrong but this ain’t how it’s supposed to be
I put my faith in God and the shade of this old Magnolia tree

Chorus
Can’t keep running all the time, like some assembly line
This way of life ain’t mine, it ain’t where I come from
Gotta get it out by five, this ain’t no way to stay alive
I’m gonna ditch this jive, where I come from

Verse 3
Do the suburban commute, hey that guy’s got a laptop at the wheel
Ain’t it funny how a cell phone makes the millions deal
Reengineer, downsize, do whatever it takes
You keep on keepin’ on, I’ll keep reaching for the brakes
Chorus
Lead

Verse 4
I’m going to get back to my roots, rediscover what I’m worth
Worship father sky and love my mother earth

Chorus
This ain’t how it’s supposed to be, it’d be a tragedy, if my kids turned out like me
This is what I believe, and it’s what I must achieve
Track Name: Still Home to Me
Words & music A. McKnight, ©1993 Waves of Mountains/Catalooch Music, BMI

Verse 1
There's a tan young man on an old John Deere, he's got 600 acres dried up this year,
got a long way to go to his first cold beer tonight,
A young girl's waitin' at the 5 and 10, in a flowered sundress with her hair in the wind,
that she don't have a lover seems like such a sin to me
Verse 2
Louie's got back from the military, he's got a tattoo to show his whole family,
week later they found his car wrapped round' a tree, bless me

Chorus
It's six in the evening on a Saturday night on the streets of my hometown,
the radio's playin' the same song we heard all summer long down that old quarry road,
you ain't missing nothin' but you still miss it all cause it still is home to me

Verse 3
There's a cold wind blows in October time, and the leaves blow cross' the county line,
and folks think back to a better time of life,
Everyone came to watch the home team play, lost the football game on Thanksgiving Day,
then the whole town met in the church to pray for luck
Chorus
Guitar lead

Verse 4
Used to be they'd work in the mill, til the cows came home, til the clock stood still
now they sit on the curb gettin' drunker still all day
Main Street looks just like it did, except the stores all closed and the lights are dead,
but I can still see it etched so clear in my head today
Chorus
Chorus
Track Name: Highland County Romp
None
Track Name: Dancing in the Rain
Words & music A. McKnight, ©1995 Waves of Mountains/Catalooch Music, BMI

Verse 1
All my years I’ve lived here, it’s the only way I know
run the family farm with the grace of God above and the fertile soil below,
summer’s gone eleven weeks, of searing stormless choke
fifty thousand dollars worth, of dreams going up in smoke

Verse 2
Sacrificed another field today, to keep the other’s growing
had to sell my milking cows, to keep the bankers going away
that line of clouds across, the skies
might bring the winds of death, or raindrops to my eyes

Chorus
My wife she’s out there dancing, in her checkered kitchen dress
droplets running down her brow, and her blond hair’s getting messed
Iowa can be a place where fertile famines drink
this year just poured life down from the brink
and I’m dancing in the rain

Verse 3
Before today my luck had gone, a hard left towards the worst
enough to make an honest man think a farmer’s life is cursed
remembering tales on my granddad’s knee, of soil that sprouted wings
it’s taken thirty years for me, to appreciate these things
Chorus

Bridge
Heard it on the radio, Dakota wheat fields won’t survive
my cousin Jack up there will find some way to stay alive
Mother Nature’s fickle ways might someday do me in
but I’m on my knees, in gratitude, cause it’s raining

Verse 4
Next year we might stare at this, same mess right in the face,
this old white house and apple trees, keep me fighting for this place
facing up to troubles that, my children might not know
when you’ve got your generations on, the farm all in a row
Chorus
Track Name: Bus to Nashville
Words & music A. McKnight, ©1995 Waves of Mountains/Catalooch Music, BMI

Verse 1
Driver, is this the bus that goes to Nashville, I’ve seen you drive through town, a couple dozen weekends now
Driver, one way ticket, no make it round trip, I bet you’ve seen a lot like me, with a guitar, and a pocket full of dreams
Verse 2
Driver, can we stop in some small town, so I can call my wife, let her know that we’re all right
and Driver, I hope God is riding with you, cause these Appalachian roads are dark, and there’s many miles to go
Chorus
Baby better leave the porch light on, don’t know how long I’ll be gone,
you know this business is all about, how Music City spits ‘em out
and makes you crazy
Verse 3
Driver, can I bum a cigarette, no thanks, I don’t smoke but just the same, it’d sure feel good in my veins
Driver, are those the lights there in the distance, those buildings sure look tall and I’m feeling mighty cold
Chorus
Lead
Verse 4
Darling, wake up, cause you’ve been dreaming, and talking in your sleep, tell me of these demons that you keep
Baby, how could I be such a fool, to think that I have this gift to turn music into gold
Chorus
Track Name: If I Was A Cat
Words & music A. McKnight, ©1993 Waves of Mountains/Catalooch Music, BMI

Verse 1
If I was a cat, I’d sleep all day til I tired of it,
If I was a cat, in a sunny window sill I’d sit
If I was a cat, I’d play in the morning til it’s time to quit, if I was a cat

Verse 2
If I was a cat, I’d whine and meow when the ground was froze
If I was a cat, I’d wash that spot in between my toes
If I was a cat, I’d curl up by the fire when the cold wind blows, if I was a cat
Chorus
Feline dreams and strings to bat, and a full dish between to keep me fat,
and there’s nothing in my head nothing wrong with that, f I was a cat

Verse 3
If I was a cat, I’d hiss and spit when the dog came near
If I was a cat, I’d kick those mites right out of my ear
If I was a cat, I’d fill all the mice full up with fear, if I was a cat

Verse 4
If I was a cat, chase crickets in the sun til I’d had my fill
If I was a cat, I’d bounce off the walls and take a spill
If I was a cat, I would eat the meat and spit out the pill, if I was a cat
Chorus
Chorus
Track Name: On the Beach
None
Track Name: Election Day
Words & music A. McKnight, ©1993 Waves of Mountains/Catalooch Music, BMI

Verse 1
I see the candidate, upon my TV show, running for the power play
I see their faces, on every street lamp on my street, staring at the people of my hometown
They’re standing on the stage, like puppets in a show, they call each other names just like schoolboys do
The only character I see is in the roles they try to play, in a script the media man wrote

Chorus
Mommy will it rain, on election day, will I get lucky, will it turn out good for me
Someday I’ll be rich enough, to buy election day, but right now I’m too poor, to pay the price

Verse 2
The stage is set and the cameras flash as the actor makes his way, ruler of the mediaocracy
Pulitzer puppets dance their jig with the doctorers of spin, yin and yang in great conspiracy
Someone wrote democracy in America, where all the people have their say
but all we get are politicians, blowing in the wind, they’re all so spineless anyway

Chorus
Bridge
Chorus
Chorus
Track Name: Demon Named Loneliness
Words & music A. McKnight, ©1994 Waves of Mountains/Catalooch Music, BMI

Verse 1
Johnny walks by the railroad tracks in the blazing valley sun,
dawn to dusk, he works his plow just as hard as anyone,
Sandy lives on the edge of town in a stone house on the hill,
senior sweethearts, young and in love, and it feels like they always will
Every year when the corn gets high he’ll be working in the fields,
this summer it’s not the same because, change is on their heels
Chorus 1
She’s wrapped in his heart tonight and it feels like it’s forever,
they’ll find true love on the banks of the Shenandoah River,
the full moon glows so bright but they don’t know it fades away,
cause tomorrow that demon named loneliness is coming their way,

Verse 2
College came and sororities seemed like Sandy’s brand new life,
graduation in the top of her class and became a lawyer’s wife,
suburban ways and Mercedes are a long way from this town
Johnny’s heart lies planted deep beneath this fertile valley ground
Every year when the corn gets high she never sees these lands,
and every summer Johnny harvests solitude she planted in his hands
Chorus 2
She’s far from his heart tonight and she’ll probably be forever,
he sits all alone on the banks of the Shenandoah River,
the full moon burns so bright and it never goes away,
cause that demon named loneliness lives with Johnny every day,
Lead

Verse 3
Johnny looked up from his crops one day to see an old familiar sight,
a long lost love in the edge of the field in a dress of lily white
Every year when the corn gets high they’ll be working on their lands,
harvesting love from seeds of sorrow that, they planted with their hands
Chorus 3
She’s back in his heart tonight and they know that it’s forever,
rediscovering lifelong love on the Shenandoah River,
the full moon glows so bright though they know it fades away,
cause that demon named loneliness has found somewhere else to stay,
Track Name: Gatlinburg
Words & music A. McKnight, ©1995 Waves of Mountains/Catalooch Music, BMI

Verse 1
An old man now I’ve grown to be, but here’s the simple truth,
the story of my life played out while I was but a youth
My family farmed these hollers since, my great-great-grandpappy,
lived here in these misty woods with the last of the Cherokee

Verse 2
First loggers came with big machines, tearing up the earth,
took Appalachian hardwood trees, for all that they were worth
Ripped coves and balds alike, took all the land would give,
left us with a few cold coins, and no place left to live
Chorus
The moon sets slowly on the west,
bringing darkness to this life and all the rest,
Lord these mountain ways must end,
when the last coach out of Gatlinburg is goin’ round the bend

Verse 3
The federal government took my land, in 1921,
to make a national park here in the home of the Cherokee sun,
Tourists came from New York town, in finery and pearls,
staring at these hazy slopes and the barefoot hillbilly girls
Chorus
Bridge
No place left to go, but a government house with the flatlanders,
and the politicians throwing stones, to claim the triumph first
Lead

Verse 4
Now I’m not much ‘ginst wilderness, in fact I’d like some too,
just give me back my rundown shack, that’s all I ask of you
My homestead lies 2 exits down, this old 4-lane highway,
paved over by a strip mall with a Smoky Mountain name
Chorus
Chorus
Track Name: Atchafalaya
Words & music A. McKnight, ©1994 Waves of Mountains/Catalooch Music, BMI

Verse 1
Atchafalaya, won’t you marry me,
we could run like the devil, to the deep blue sea
we could mix and mingle, we could dance in time,
oh Atchafalaya, won’t you be mine
Verse 2
Don’t mind the big muddy, I’m-a workin’ on it too,
spread my wide shoulders, across the great bayou
see the gators baskin’, lying in the sun,
oh Atchafalaya, you are the one

Chorus
Hey there Mr. Mississippi, what’s your line
raisin’ cane in N’Awlins, and runnin’ all the time

Verse 3
Atchafalaya, make a break with me,
we could boil like gumbo, and laugh in the heat
levees fall like oak trees, when I flex my might,
oh Atchafalaya, won’t you be mine
Solo
Chorus

Verse 4
Atchafalaya, just like the good old days,
afore they straightened my wanderin’, and refineries came
I don’t need no coaxin’, cause the time has come,
oh Atchafalaya, you are the one
slip over the levee, get ready to run
oh Atchafalaya, you are the one
Track Name: Coyote Moon (Over This Red Land)
None
Track Name: You Used to Know
Words & music A. McKnight, ©1994 Waves of Mountains/Catalooch Music, BMI

Verse 1
When I was a youngster, I’d top this treeless hill
and look out on this valley where, the lights of town grew still
and sneak back through the orchard, just to pocket apples sweet,
enjoying moonlit silence on my, deserted boyhood street
Verse 2
We were just 8th graders when, the music got too much,
spending every waking moment with a guitar’s gentle touch
and we would form a band and make it big, and everyone would say
I remember when those guys, were kids who couldn’t play
Chorus
It seems like things should never change and they never will,
and Jen’s still waiting tables down at Rizer’s Bar and Grill
the 5 & 10 still sells you stuff you’d barely use,
but things a kid like me would be, heartbroken to lose
good things come to those who wait, might be my turn to go
I’m still the boy you used to know
Verse 3
we survived the turbulence, and turmoil of high school
I sat at our junior prom, staring at you like a fool
and I was so in love with your elegance and grace
not knowing two years later that, you’d wear a mother’s face
Bridge
I’m fondly reminiscing bout, those bars we used to prowl,
a bunch of us old boyhood friends, staring at the moon to howl,
and I might be so lucky, just to spend the night with you,
and later recognizing all, the hurt I put you through
Verse 4
I still watch the sun set, but now it’s over Blue Ridge hills
it seems the things I’ve left behind, are with me even still
and you might hear my songs on, the big-city radio
just remember that that voice is still the boy you used to know
Chorus
good things come to those who wait, I hope you see it’s so
I’m still the boy you used to know
Track Name: Patrick McGuire
Words & music A. McKnight, ©1992 Waves of Mountains/Catalooch Music, BMI

Verse 1
I met an old man, late one grey winter day, took the name of Patrick McGuire,
I smelled he'd been drinkin', probably many long years, his eyes glowed red like a fire
He pulled out his pipe and sat down on the bench, I thought I'd hear him out for awhile,
Though his life was a shambles, t'weren't always that way, 'fore he'd left his beloved emerald isle
Chorus 1
Singing hi-ee-i-oh, I'll find my pot of gold, an American car and a four-bedroom home
hi-ee-i-oh, sure as I'll kick the booze, there ain't no way I'm gonna lose,
there ain't no way I'm gonna lose
Verse 2
He'd had three grown up sons who'd all done him proud, in the old land they'da gone far,
But he grieved for the daughter, Aileen he'd lost, twas her memory he took to the bar,
He'd had a fine wife name of Katie Marie, who stood with him for thirty-odd years,
But as an old man his drinking, brought her deep shame, finally left him with memories and tears
Chorus 2
Singing hi-ee-i-oh, there'll be streets paved with gold,
where there's plenty to eat and there's plenty to hold
hi-ee-i-oh, sure as I'll kick the booze, there ain't no way I'm gonna lose,
there ain't no way I'm gonna lose
Instrumental Release
Verse 3
A couple of weeks past, I stopped round by his stone, in St. Paddys amongst thousands more,
Alas t'were no gold streets in the life that he'd led, Patrick McGuire'd lost his own war
Chorus 1
Chorus 2
Track Name: Weekend in the Country
Words & music A. McKnight, ©1990 Waves of Mountains/Catalooch Music, BMI

Verse 1
Headed for the mountains and the cool country air, riding on the wind just like a song,
a lover and a friend beside me in simple harmony, travelling through the forests tall and strong,
the city brings me pressures, that I must escape,
my feet get cold and lonely, every time I wake
I could bring you roses on a winter's afternoon,
and you could sit beside me and brighten up the room,
what else would a man want to do,
on a weekend in the country with you,

Verse 2
Lying by the firelight, and basking in the glow, Mother Nature warming to our songs,
Just give me an old guitar and your splendid company, we'll make sweet loving music all night long,
two hundred miles of highway, can't bring me fast enough,
to the peaceful northlands, when the times get rough,
and I might be a fool with more to say than I should,
but with your arms around me I'm feeling awful good,
what else would a man want to do,
on a weekend in the country with you,

Instrumental Release

Verse 3
Underneath the moonlight my heart is beating strong,
someone out there somewhere must have known it all along,
what else would a man want to do,
on a weekend in the country with you.
Track Name: For This Time
None