Strangers With Shoes

by Robin Grey

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1.
Joseph's in the forest looking for the man that they call Peter. I am in the bathroom looking for the marbles that I've lost. The pig if flew out of the window, landing deftly in the garden. Elly is in Hampstead desparately hunting for some moss. I don't like your fashion business, mr. I don't like those drugs that keep you looking so thin. I don't like your fashion business, mr. I don't need no cream to give me younger looking skin. Ruth is down in southern spain, talking to my long long twin brother. I just washed my eyelids and hung my blue coat high upon a cross. The fish and spoon returned with plans for getting married in the autumn. Jakob's leaving puddles in the bathroom for the bugs to skate across. Making sense of wedsnesday is only rivalled by making sense of tuesday. Tuesday's only rivalled by monday and perhaps sunday too. A drink, a fuck, some luck and maybe we might keep the boat a floating. Patching up the scars with some cardboard and some karma just might do.
2.
Till Dawn 04:21
picking my way back through the rain grey skies today but its fine here in my mind play like a child leaves underfoot autumn could turn out to be musically mine spring in my step I stayed up ‘till dawn again drinking with friends moments you just feel so alive feel so alive my road has been better believe better pretend consigned to some place before memory me wind in my hair thoughts of your smile in my dreams patch up the past love and cheap booze I stayed up ‘till dawn again drinking with friends moments you just feel so alive feel so alive dance in the street break out the flag singing aloud foreign eye textures and words things that we heard my pen it feels momentum sat on a train palette of greens strangers with shoes I stayed up ‘till dawn again drinking with friends moments you just feel so alive feel so alive ...and I sat there watching her sleep how do you dream? when will you wake? I must say one of a kind parallel lines meet at the vanishing point not what I mean I meant to say… I stayed up ‘till dawn again drinking with friends moments you just feel so alive feel so alive
3.
What's in that box? What's hiding in here? Pictures from Bedford, taken half a blue moon ago. My we were young then, all mix-tapes and alcopops, bum bags, shell suits and meatloaf CDs. Did I really dress like that and dance to that tune? Then stumble home drunk by the light of the moon. Guess times they change and the change times they guess and nonsense can still have a welcoming ring. My Weezer cd's well they hardly get played, my obsession with Ani Difranco has faded, You might ask is anything certain these days, I would probably tell you that I love Leonard Cohen. A snail carries with him some slime and a shell, I've got ten boxes plus cartons As well as these books, bags and a case my grandfather used in the war. Did I really write those words and did she write back? Stray hands in Row G all through that James Bond film. Nonsense it still has a welcoming ring and heroes they still don't come easy. Chorus Did I really dress like that and dance to that tune? Then stumble home drunk by the light of the moon. Guess times they change and the change times they guess and nonsense can still have a welcoming ring. Chorus
4.
Tell me do you see me When you close your eyes at night? Painted on your eyelids As you’re turning out the light. Your voice it spins in my mind It's been wearing through the grooves. We've been intimately distant, And I just don't get the rules… I want you, girl Last week I wrote a letter Now I’m rereading it through. I wasted all those fancy words I just meant “I love you”. Forgive my confusion, Dear won’t you understand, That sometimes knowing what to say Slips right out of my hand… I never met a mind so fancy free as yours before, I was busy at the books, While you were dancing by the door. Somewhere in the middle There is love and common ground, So I sweep away the leaves And we can keep dancing about I lie here playing out the scene A hundred million times, What you will be wearing And the beauty in your eyes. There’s no time like the present so I’m reaching for the phone But you’ve never cared for mornings And there’s places I should go… The horses left with Elvis and they rode into the sun, Two dots on the horizon, strained my eyes and they were gone. It’s been a torrid day, I’ve been waiting for your call Sometimes I more than wonder If you care for me at all. As I walk down Church Street The last light fades away It’s getting darker early now That winters on the way. Something's gotten missing, the puzzle is upside down. The Guinness didn’t clear my head It just brought on more clouds… The moon it whispered in my ear And kept me from my dreams. The silhouettes around my room Are never what they seem. ‘You and Me’ or ‘Me and You’ Said either way around, Would surely make such sense In this cold unforgiving town…
5.
Montreal 04:38
Let's take a trip down Somerset Island, Across the mainland to Hudson Bay. We'll take a boat across the water down to Montreal. Taking our time we'll cross the border And be in New York for christmas day. We'll meet the friends we made in Philadelphia in Florida sometime in May. I'd escape across the sea, If you would come with me to Montreal. I would run away If I thought it possible at all. Let's take a boat from Norway And sail north across the Barents Sea We'll spend some time in Anderma And take a train across Russia. I would gather sweat and dust, If that is what I must do to get away. I wouldn't care about the news, Lets wear out all our shoes in vain. Let's drink tea in China, Let's drink coffee by the Arabian Sea, Let's go walking in the water But only up to our knees. So I'm sitting in my room, pencil in my hand, Drawing lines on the wall, on my map of the world. I couldn't be in Rio by tomorrow Even though its an inch from my nose. Looks like it's Brighton or Moorgate for us. Call in sick on tuesday and take the bus. I'd be happy walking on the beach alone, You've got money and could fly to Rome. I would sail across the sea If you would come with me to Montreal. I would run away if I thought it possible at all.
6.
I'm making my way north On an unpretentious day. Yesterday the sky was naked, Today she's wrapped herself in grey, And I have cloaked myself In my hat and coat and dreams So for now I am safe from the cold Whatever today brings. Well the train it shakes and shudders As we make our way, Which nearly masks these nervous hands Which still have much to say. A volume of memories past Is nearly sealed and signed And bound in shades of autumn leaves Which are fading from my mind. So spring is here to greet me, Think I'll go and cut my hair And throw away these faded rags, Torn and tattered from all the wear and tear of Tumbling in turmoil and then hitting the ground, Bouncing back with baited breath, Nearly half way to the clouds.
7.
Ninety Days 03:36
My congratulations – girl you’ve bled me dry. Though you tried to warn me, I’m still feeling quite surprised. I'm rearranging clichés as I lie in this room. I'll go and check with Ani ‘cos she’ll have been here too. Fuck you. You said that you were sorry – Babe that just won’t do. Do you really think a band-aid Could heal this open wound? I dreamed there was us – But there is only me and you. Or perhaps now just me – Do our bridges lie in ruins? Fuck you. I wonder if you shook me hard enough Would these feelings go away? A day of listless longing with nothing left to say Walking on a wire – I thought I’d risk a leap. But I never could have guessed you’d Take the ground out from my feet. And now I don’t know where to turn I’m back in free fall Today I mourn your memory but tomorrow move on. Fuck you. I hope that I am wrong. I hope I see you soon. I hope that you will call me – Cos I sure ain’t calling you. We were laying down foundations But the cornerstones weren’t true Now the horses they have bolted And the sunset’s been ruined. Fuck you. My tear ducts empty, I’m sure I’ve paid my dues. And what I lose in rhythm I’m making up in blues. I hope that you are happy; I trust that she is well. The night closes in on my Tuesday.
8.
we stumble but the march of progress goes on - distilled in a book and captured in song, when laughter drowns the dogma we’ll be free. nature doesn’t need to win this one with words. somethings rise, others fall I’ve heard, remember this as rings inside a tree. i won’t be the last one out the door and this is all just make believe so i make my mind to take my time, there's a bird silhouette on the laundry line, the blackberries are ripe, it’s havest time again. did summer come early? did it come at all? flip-flops in puddles all down the road. the ice is melting someplace far away. i won’t be the last one out the door and this is all just make believe x 2 a ring of roses and they all fall down - water them but forget the town. sacrifices or indignities? now tell me something i can understand, a truth i can hold in the palm of my hand, a song i can sing for all humanity i won’t be the last one out the door and this is all just make believe x 2 the theatre of man has come to town, the curtains back, the house lights down spotlight on a blushing history. don’t try to make sense of the words above i’m not the first to confuse war and love - do whatever you must to live your dreams. i won’t be the last one out the door and this is all just make believe x 2

credits

released December 1, 2009

All songs by Robin Grey except
'Younger Looking Skin' words by Robin Grey,
music by Robin Grey, Barbara Bartz and Iain MacLeod.
'Montreal' by Laurence Williams.
'Shakes & Shudders' words by Robin Grey,
music by Robin Grey and Beth Dariti.

(c) & (p) 2009 Robin Grey.

(cc) This record is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs license, giving you the freedom to copy and share the recordings for any non-commercial purpose.

All rights regarding the commercial usage of the record are reserved and unauthorised commercial replication is strictly prohibited. For more information visit creativecommons.org.

Recorded by Robin Grey at The Blue Door.
Mastered by Dominique Brethes at Flow Mastering.
Additional Engineering on 'Till Dawn' and 'Ninety Days'
by Marc Specter at Sandy Lodge Studio.
Mixed by Thomas Heister at Flesh & Bone Studios
except tracks 1,2, 6 & 7 mixed by Robin Grey.

Robin Grey - vocals, guitars, ukulele, electric bass and percussion with:

Iain Macleod - banjo on 'Younger Looking Skin',
'Montreal' and bass on 'Roses From Africa'
Ben Oliver - rhodes on 'Till Dawn' and 'Ninety Days', piano on 'Roses From Africa'
Joe Allen - percussion on 'Younger Looking Skin', 'Till Dawn' and 'Ninety Days'
Barbara Bartz - accordion and violin on 'Younger Looking Skin'
violin on 'Montreal', 'The Suitors Ballyhoo' and 'Roses From Africa'
Tom Pie - double bass on 'Ninety Days'
Poppy Villiers-Stuart - flute on 'Till Dawn'
Madelaine Hart - backing vocals on 'I Love Leonard Cohen'
Beth Dariti - guitar and backing vocals on 'Shakes & Shudders'
Victoria Couper - backing vocals on 'Roses From Africa'


Front cover and inside picture by Lynda Laird.
Back cover by Erik Öhrn.
Packaging by Paperfoam using 100% recycled and recyclable materials.

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