Kid With a Dream

Tommy’s out there early in the morning
Shootin’ buckets into a worn out hoop and net
His Pop put it up when he was ten years old
It doesn’t even look like he’s breakin’ a sweat

His free throws glide into the basket,
every single one
And this kid with a dream,
he’s just havin’ his fun
He’s got it all, the ambition
and the work ethic down
He could end up at Illinois State
Purdue or Georgetown
His whole future stands before him
He’s the star player of the area’s
Number one High School team
The kid with a dream

Some of his friends tell him he’s crazy
They say he better have a backup plan
Sometimes things don’t always come to pass
And you grow up to be a broken old man

They say he’d be better off getting into business
They tell him basketball’s not a practical goal
But Tommy, he’s a pistol, he’s gonna go far
He’s a natural talent with self-control

His three pointers glide into the basket,
every single one
And this kid with a dream,
he’s just havin’ his fun
He’s got it all, the ambition
and the work ethic down
He could end up at USC, Yale
or Harvard in Beantown
His whole future stands before him
He’s the star player of the area’s
Number One High School team
The kid with a dream

Tommy’s just living his dream.

2017

Lyrics Note:

OK, this one took about three sets of lyrics to go to this morning. I wrote about a couple of things, then I came up with the title “Kid With a Dream”. I looked it up via the BMI repertoire, and the title surprisingly had not been taken. Yay! So I thought about what it was that title could be about. There are so many things that title could be about when it comes to kids and dreams. I just knew though there was one thing I had not touched on in previous lyrics I’ve written, and it was about Basketball. Where I come from, Basketball was a big deal. At Moreland Notre Dame, I knew two Tommys who played basketball – Tom Sglav and Tom Barsi. They were both great players. So, essentially, I had to use that name as the character of the top player of the team.
This one was very easy to write. I thought it was going to be about songwriting, but you know, a song comes the way it wants to come.

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That Nashville Night

Taylor Swift called on the phone, she wanted to write some songs with me
I was like, hold up pretty baby I’m not like the other men in Tennessee
I don’t have a pickup truck, It’s a Chevy Malibu LT
I only know you from your songs and watching your videos on TV
But she insisted it would be great, so I flew down from BloNo on a Tuesday
We both brought our notebooks, couldn’t believe I was her protege
And we wrote until about Midnight – about six or seven tracks
On that Nashville Night, we were a couple of songwriting maniacs

Songwriting maniacs,
Taylor Swift and I
on that amazing Nashville Night had been
two wild and crazy songwriting maniacs

Bridge:
And the studio loved all of those cleverly written songs, we were so damn proud
Then we recorded all of them in a few days and uploaded them to the cloud
A few nights later, we were freaking out, someone leaked them to iTunes
So I suggested we take a trip out to Watsonville and stay at the Pajaro Dunes

Then I was woken up from that dream to my wife and daughters’ screams
They said Taylor Swift just called and had some exciting news to say
Jimmy Kimmel wanted us to do that duet about that one breakup
The crazy one where she calls the guy a dick and a really bad lay
So we played the first song we wrote on Kimmel’s late night show
And we told the story of how it happened because he really had to know
How we were able to write all those fantastic and cleverly written tracks
We said on that Nashville Night, we were a couple of songwriting maniacs

Songwriting maniacs
Taylor Swift and I
On that amazing Nashville Night had been
two wild and crazy songwriting maniacs

2017

I Wanna Go Fast With You

I never let anyone drive my Chevrolet
It’s my pride n joy, that’s the way it goes
But you and I just got done cleanin’ it up
With dish soap and water from the garden hose

But now go get your stuff together girl
Let’s take this Malibu out for a spin
Baby, I think deep down you knew
I wanna go fast with you

We can head out to Rader Farms
Or the McClean County Fairgrounds
Or we could just drive
As far as you wanna drive
Let’s just get the hell outta town
With all the windows down
And that hair of yours flyin’ around
It would be a dream come true
I wanna go fast with you

Sweetie, you can take me anywhere
It’s your choice, where do you wanna go?
Now don’t you be thinkin’ twice about it honey
We could zoom up to Canada or down to Mexico

We could just do a quick trip up to the Lake
Our cell phones can just stay home and wait
While we’re blastin’ some Florida Georgia Line
Carrie, Brad, Garth & your favorite George Strait

We can head out to Rader Farms
Or the McClean County Fairgrounds
Or we could just drive
As far as you wanna drive
Let’s just get the hell outta town
With all the windows down
And that hair of yours flyin’ around
It would be a dream come true

I wanna go fast with you
I wanna go fast…
I wanna go fast…..

2017

Lyric Notes: Yes, of course it’s partially inspired by Ricky Bobby. So, I’ve been reading about this thing called “Bro Country,” and I heard that a few of my favorite artists ain’t too keen on it. I’ve been talking to a lot of people who turned me on to Florida Country Line and a few others. Rather than take one side or another, I thought I’d write my version of a “Bro Country” song with some favorite artists in it. The only thing I’m missing is a pickup truck and Mama. I don’t have a pickup truck yet, but that’s ok – it’s my life and that’s the way it is now. Kind of a fun quickie song that includes some local Bloomington area spots. Good times, friends. Good times.

I Can’t Do This Anymore

She got all her stuff together, packed the car, gave back the ring
She said I needed counseling, she said I could keep everything
She’d rather live in a New York apartment on the 42nd floor
But all I heard as she slammed the door
Was “I can’t do this anymore.”

I can’t do this to you
I can’t do this to me
We can’t do this to each other
I can’t do this anymore

A buddy defriended me on Facebook, said I was full of it & was done
Gave me all the stuff he borrowed, and he rode off toward the sun
He told me never contact him again, he let me know that it was war
His last words to me sure settled the score
He said, “I can’t do this anymore”

I can’t do this to you
I can’t do this to me
We can’t do this to each other
I can’t do this anymore

So now I’m here in this house that’s falling apart just like my heart
All my shattered dreams have given me another chance to start
I’ll get the hell out of Montana to move back West by the shore
I’ll sell the house for a buyer to restore
Cause I can’t do this anymore

Bridge
Sometimes we have to admit that we were wrong
So we can find someone else and write a better song

2017

Lyric Notes:
Originally entitled “I Can’t Fucking Do This Anymore” this was much harsher than its current version. A weird time to finish this (Valentine’s Day), it’s a reflection about a few things beyond an old lover or a friend. As a light-hearted man, I am attracted to darker subjects and one of those subjects is the fragile nature- that break from the old ways of the past to the possibility of a fresh start. What makes people walk and what keeps you believing in the promise of a relationship? Who knows but here’s a kind of justification for what happens when one leaves.

Way Back When Again

I walked into the Class Reunion
And saw a friendly, happy face
She wore the dress her Mom made
with blue velvet and lace
Her hair was longer, but her eyes
Oh man, how they still shined
All those High School memories
Started flowing through my mind

I didn’t know if she felt the same
When I softly called her name
She just smiled that sunny smile
It felt like I was still in the game
I didn’t know why we said goodbye
To all those feelings we felt back then
All I knew was we were flying high
Cause it was way back when again

Way back when again
Way back when again
Way back when again
Way back when again

She said yes to my dance request
And I noticed her same sweet scent
And I’m not sure she ever thought
Why that song, and what it meant
It was the one from our Senior Prom
When I assumed we would eventually
Be married and have a couple of kids
But about that, we wouldn’t agree

Yet while we were dancing in the gym
It seemed like we felt the same
She was smiling that sunny smile
I just knew I was still in the game
I didn’t know why we said goodbye
To all those feelings we felt back then
All I knew was we were flying high
Cause it was way back when again

Then she asked me about my best friend
and I remembered how it fell apart
Prom was not only when we broke up
It’s the night she broke my heart

And I now see she’ll never feel the same
When I softly call out her name
She’ll just smile that sunny smile
And I’ll never ever be in the game
I know now why we said goodbye
To what we had back then
I also realize that she and I
Can’t go way back when again

Way back when again
Way back when again
Way back when again
Way back when again

Valentine’s Day, 2017.

Lyric Notes:

Class Reunions have a way of inspiring me. With our WHS 30 year High School reunion coming up, obviously old relationships come into memory and with those come those High School Breakup Stories and even old crushes. I always wanted to come up with my own version of David Wilcox’s “Last Chance Waltz” or Garth Brooks'”Unanswered Prayers” but with a different take on it. Sometimes when you revisit people from your past, you find out who you were and who you were to them. This is one of those moments where it takes a Class Reunion to rediscover that very thing that you denied learning due to forgiveness of that person for just going with their instincts. It’s based around a few real moments from my life and girls I’ve known and dated or wanted to date but for the most part, it’s more of something that I came up with that I could relate to the character in a cathartic way. They always say write about what you know. Well, this is what I know: Moments like these are priceless. Better than that, this lyric I just wrote changed my life. I hope that it changes yours.

The Girl Who Changed My Mind

I thought I’d be single
for the rest of my days
That I’d be eating solo
in depressing book-cafes
That someone wouldn’t stay
when everyone else was unkind
But at last I found her
The girl who changed my mind

I thought I’d spend my evenings
playing my guitar alone
I thought I’d only be with
my shiny candy bar phone
I’d be old & in my easy chair
cause she would be too hard to find
But then she at last found me
The girl who changed my mind

We had too good of a time
to walk away from a great life
The one we would eventually have
as husband and wife
So we got married one summer
and the kids are growing fast
And it’s better than expected
It’s been a total blast

So as you sit there in your car
and you wonder what will be
Just remember the story
of that elusive girl and me
Wait for that special one
Your hearts will feel aligned
Everything will be all right
With that girl who’ll change your mind

Everything will be all right
With that girl who’ll change your mind.

2017

I’ve been driving a lot of college students around town – sometimes guys, sometimes girls, and I overhear a lot of stuff – sometimes they even talk to me about their relationship stuff. There is that struggle… Is the right one coming, and what’s gonna happen next with this person? There were questions in my younger years too. What was I doing wrong? What was I not doing right? Was it really just them instead of me? But what I realized in life was that it really was like that love that David Wilcox talked about in his song “Right On Time,” love does reveal itself to you right on time, you just will know it deep inside yourself and they’ll know it too.

Why Are You So Upset?

The house is as clean as it could ever be
Everything has been put in its place
But the one thing that’s missing here
Is the sweet smile that was on your face

We’ve emerged from those bad times
I’ve changed my selfish rambling ways
So what seems to be the problem, my love
Babe, why aren’t these much better days?

Why are you so upset?
Don’t you have what you need?
We have plenty of food in the fridge
And so many books you can read
Our children are happy out back
You’re crying on our kitchen floor
Why isn’t what we have enough
Why do you need so much more?

Your eyes are dim
but they once were so bright
Our soft sunny day has turned
into a dark, stormy night

Something about all of this
just doesn’t sit right
I’m so confused about
what’s happening with you, my love

Why are you so upset?
Don’t we have what you need?
I don’t know how to make you happy
I’m not sure how we should proceed
No matter what I do or say
No matter where we stay or go
I love you and always will
I just wanted you to know

2017

OK, so this one I thought of this scene, you know. The one where everything is going great, but the woman you love is crying on the kitchen floor. It could be that she had been drinking and she just is depressed. It could be that you can’t see what’s going on until it’s way too late.

Let’s Stay Inside Tonight

It’s near 20 below
freezing outside
Frankly, I don’t want
you out of my sight
So what do you say,
my sugar plum fairy?
Let’s stay inside tonight

The fire’s blazing
and here’s that Toddy
Out the back window,
we only see white
What do you say,
my sweet Swedish dumplin’?
Let’s stay inside tonight

The phone is on the fritz, my lady
But at least it’s warmer in here
I’ll be a gentleman, not shady
Tomorrow, the roads will be crystal clear

How about we eat that
Delicious apple pie
With whipped cream
by candlelight?
What do you say,
my dear babycakes?
Let’s stay inside tonight

Oh, let’s stay inside tonight.

Solo, then

Back to Bridge, then last Verse.

2016

Inspired by “Baby, It’s Cold Outside,” I totally see this as a playful little scene between a dapper man and a far too uptight dame. Kind of a throwaway lyric but it was oh so fun to write. Sure put a spring in my step when I wrote it.

The Songs We Love To Hear

They make us laugh
They make us cry
They remind us of the dreams
We had when we were high
They make us sad
They make us glad
They remind us of the love
We wish we had
They are the songs we love to hear
And they’ll never disappear
To me it’s so very clear
They’ve helped me battle my fear
Those songs we love to hear
They’re stuck inside my brain
Some express joy and others’ pain
Some are by the writers of today
And some are in the Public Domain
Songs like America the Beautiful
And God Bless the USA
Also, Alexander’s Ragtime Band
And I Wanna Hold Your Hand
What’s New Pussycat?
and Love is a Splendored Thing
I Get a Kick Out of You –
And the Angels Sing
The list goes on and on
It’s a worldwide phenomenon
Those tunes we love to croon
About the sun and the silvery moon
They are in the fabric of why we are
And of the ones we love, near and far
We love blasting them in our homes
And singing them in the shower or car
We dance to them at the local bar
They play them at the baseball game
Once we hear them
We’re never, ever the same
They are the songs we love to hear
New ones are written every year
To me, they’re all so sincere
They’ve helped me break through my fear
The songs we love to hear
The songs we love to hear.

2016