As Far As I Know

by Drew James

Released 2003
Released 2003
Contemporary Folk and acoustic blues with nods to Tom Waits, Lucinda Williams & Steve Earle
  • 03:36 Lyrics Preservation Blues

    Preservation Blues

    Drew James © 2001

     

    Pharaoh came riding through his desert estate

    Pyramid’s risin’ up to challenge his fate

    Though not accused

    He’s sentenced to the preservation blues

     

    Bandit lies waiting in the drizzlin’ rain

    Citizens spot him from the passenger train

    Shakin’ in their shoes

    They whisper the preservation blues

     

    Oh lord won’t you save them

    Their lives are on the line

    Their battles are ragin’

    And time ain’t on their side

    Oh lord, they’re crying out to you

    This prayer called the preservation blues

     

    Ghost in the mirror, has a hold of my soul

    Little by little, it is takin’ its toll

    Born to lose

    And to pray the preservation blues

     

    Oh lord won’t you save us

    Our lives are on the line

    Our battles are ragin’

    And time ain’t on our side

    Oh lord, we're crying out to you

    This prayer called the preservation blues

    This prayer called the preservation blues

    This prayer called the preservation blues

     

  • 02:37 Lyrics The One

    I’d Like to be the One

    Drew James © 2001

     

    I’d like to be the one

    To get your late night call

    To whisper on my pillow

    With my feet up on the wall

    To bid you pleasant dreams

    When our conversation’s done

    I’d like to be the one

     

    I’d like to be the one

    To wander ‘cross your mind

    As you lie awake

    Way past sleepin’ time

    To be the thought you hold

    As moonlight meets the sun

    I’d like to be the one

     

    The one who hears his name

    Always next to yours

    The one who tells you things

    He’s never told before

    The one who’s love you make

    The one who’s spell you break

    I’d like to be the one

     

    I’d like to be the one

    To look into your eyes

    As you say, “Hey, sweetheart

    Where’ve you been all my life?”

    To make another day

    A celebration

    I’d like to be the one

     

    (Chorus)

    I’d like to be the one

     

  • 02:58 Lyrics As Far As I Know

    As Far As I Know

    Drew James © 2001

     

    Cool shade in the heat wave

    Hallowed be thy name

    Cool shade in the heat wave

    Hallowed be thy name

    I realized once I opened up my eyes

    I’m in heaven as far as I know

    Lord, let me take the long way home

     

    Deep well in the dry spell

    Hallowed be thy name

    Deep well in the dry spell

    Hallowed be thy name

    I realized once I opened up my eyes

    I’m in heaven as far as I know

    Lord, let me take the long way home

     

    Bluebird sings on top of a tree

    Where leaves spin their green into gold

    Soft evening breeze tells a secret to me

    Delivering peace to my soul

    I’m in heaven as far as I know

     

    Lovin’ arms at sundown

    Hallowed be thy name

    Lovin’ arms at sundown

    Hallowed be thy name

    Darkness is light in the comfort of her eyes

    Heaven’s anywhere she goes

    Lord, let her take the long way home

     

    Bluebird sings from the top of a tree

    Where leaves spin their green into gold

    Soft evening breeze tells a secret to me

    Delivering peace to my soul

    I’m in heaven as far as I know

     

  • 03:28 Lyrics I'll Never Make Friends With You Again

    I’ll Never Make Friends With You Again

    Drew James © 2003

     

    You lit that smile on your blue-eyed face

    I couldn’t tell if it was meant for me

    You looked just a bit out of place

    From the start you were hard to believe

     

    How could I have been so blind

    When will I ever learn

    Out of sight out of mind

    I was alone when the weather turned

     

    I’ve been waiting for you all night long

    Taking cover by this pay telephone

    I swear to the wind and I swear to the rain

    And I’ll never make friends with you again

     

    I saw you at the coffee shop

    You pretended not to see me

    Then you tried not to stop

    But I reached out and tugged your sleeve

     

    I wouldn’t let you get away

    So now I’m paying the price

    It seems this bed I’ve made

    Is smack in the middle of a fool’s paradise

     

    (Chorus)

     

    I searched from the bridge through the park

    I searched from the light until dark

    Now I can’t shake this fear in my head

    That I’ll never make friends with you again

     

    How could I have been so blind

    When will I ever learn

    Out of sight out of mind

    I was alone when the weather turned

     

    (Chorus)

    I’ll never make friends with you again

    I’ll never make friends with you again

  • 03:04 Lyrics Across The U.S.A.

    Across the USA

    Drew James © 2001

     

    You know I feel so different this morning

    There’s something special today

    My mind’s clear like never before

    My thoughts are so far away

     

    Unemployment and sunshine

    Go together so well

    I’m in the mood for a road trip

    I need some stories to tell

     

    (Chorus)

    With a few cans of Spam and a sleeping bag

    I’ll be on my way

    Across the USA

    Across the USA

     

    I’ve never been way out in Las Vegas

    I ain’t been down to New Orleans

    I’ve lived my whole life here in Toledo

    Its time I lived out my dreams

     

    Can’t tell Esther I’m going

    She just won’t understand

    I left the car by the creekside

    I’ve got it carefully planned

     

    With my new moustache and some wraparound shades

    I will make my way

    Across the USA

     

    (Bridge)

    A few misleading clues on the table

    A little hair of the dog

    A trace of blood in the stable

    Its as easy as fallin’ off a log

     

    (Repeat first verse/ chorus)

     

    I will make my way

    Across the USA

    Across the USA

    Across the USA

  • 03:43 Lyrics I Know What Love Is

    I Know What Love Is

    Drew James © 2003

     

    When you told me you love me

    You took me by surprise

    Now I doubt the intentions

    That lie behind your innocent eyes

     

    There once was another

    Who used those same words

    Then I watched it all shatter

    She left me there with nothin’ but hurt

     

    I thought when I met you

    All that had changed

    But now I’ve discovered

    It’s all just the same

     

    I know what love is

    It’s a lock with no key

    A promise that’s broken

    A lie you try to believe

     

    I know what love is

    It’s the verse of a poem

    That once it’s recited

    Leaves you sad and alone

     

    I know what love is

    I know what love is

     

    When you told me you love me

    Who’d you think you could fool

    Cause words ain’t just words

    When someone believes that they might be true

     

    But I ain’t that someone

    I’ve been through this before

    If I told you I love you

    You’d laugh and walk out that door

     

    PC

     

    Chorus

  • 02:46 Lyrics Rain Took The Rhubarb

    Rain Took The Rhubarb

    Drew James © 2001

     

    I thought the worst was over

    Now the ache’s back in my heart

    There’s no way to replay this game

    We can’t go back to start

     

    All the words that you can say

    Have all been said before

    They’re worn out like the dreams that lay

    Scattered on our floor

     

    Now the rain took the rhubarb Elmo

    A storm washed away all the years

    The rain took the rhubarb Elmo

    Just as spring came smiling down

    A tempest fell like tears

    And all our hopes for harvest disappeared

     

    A cold wind blew all winter

    And chilled us to the bone

    Our credit at the general store

    Ran out months ago

     

    All we had at Christmas time

    Was salty pork and beans

    On New Years we sang Auld Lang Syne

    Then we mortgaged everything

     

    Chorus

     

    You said this time would be different

    You said that things had changed

    You promised me and I believed

    It all wouldn’t be in vain

     

    Then the rain took the rhubarb Elmo

    A storm washed away all the years

    The rain took the rhubarb Elmo

    Just as spring came smiling down

    A tempest fell like tears

    And all our hopes for harvest disappeared

     

     

     

  • 03:10 Lyrics Read About The Mob

    Read About the Mob © 1999 by Drew James

     

    When I was a young boy

    Growing up on the streets

    In the Italian neighborhood

    I’d watch the old men

    Down on the corner

    And knew they were up to no good

     

    They all had young girls

    And fresh tailored suits

    And drove in big black cars

    They walked like kings

    Through the alleys and the streets

    Drank on the arm in all the bars

     

    Chorus:

    I love to read about the mob

    And catch their TV shows

    I wear a dark suit and a Borsolino hat

    And vacation on the Jersey shore

     

    Sammy “the bull” Gravano

    Lucky Luciano

    Paul Castellano

    Frankie Abbatemarco

    Sal Maranzano

    Author of the “No Hands Rule”

     

    Whether puttin’ up a book

    Or riding a cold meat hook

    The big Dons and the Godfathers rule

    They’ll take you up the Bridge of Sighs

    And have you stare into the mad dogs eyes

    Till you take the wrap and play the fool

     

    Chorus

     

    Cosa Nostra face due Valacchi

    Mafioso capo Carlo Gambino

    Midnight Rose and rosso tavolo vino

    Don’t get cozy Dr. Lambardozzi

    Steel bullets and a rubber hosie

    The FBI is getting’ real nosey

     

    Chorus

  • 03:29 Lyrics Rock 'n Roll Tears

    Rock n’ Roll Tears

    © Drew James 2002

     

    When my fingers, touch the silver strings

    I recall the joy it used to bring

    Before the tune changed to fortune & fame

     

    From this stage, high above the ground

    Can’t find a friend, out in the crowd

    I’m out of reach and so far out of touch

     

    So who will catch me if I slip & fall from way up here

    Alone with my rock n’ roll tears

     

    Pretty sounds, led to starry eyes

    Precious rings, fans who idolize

    How it came to be I’ll never explain

     

    I stood by and watched it grow

    Seemed all I touched turned into gold

    Till the only pretty sounds were made by the sales

     

    But who will catch me if I slip & fall from way up here

    Alone with my rock n’ roll tears

     

    Now everyone I try to hold

    Freezes just like Midas gold

    And all the starry eyes

    Are turning clear

    Except for my rock n’ roll tears

     

    So who will catch me if I slip & fall from way up here

    And dry these rock n’ roll tears

     

  • 03:11 Lyrics Sworn On A Bible

    Sworn on a Bible

    Drew James © 2001

     

    She takes the left turn off the hot road

    Ands drives on through the barbwire maze

    Four guards to pass with an innocent smile

    She lives for these visiting days

     

    She’s a new page in his story

    A series that’s yet to be bound

    Each chapter’s come to a similar end

    Hidden so it cannot be found

     

    And she swears her love on his bible

    She'll love him till the moon’s lost its glow

    Till all the birds have run out of songs

    Till darkness is all that she knows

     

    Plexiglas laced with cold steel

    Joins in their welcome of hands

    Religious words start to pour from his lips

    He says only god can judge man

     

    He cries that his past is remorseful

    And he carries this burden in his heart

    And true prison walls are that memory’s long

    Coupled with life that’s so short

     

    Chorus

     

    The clock watchman signals one minute

    As the visitor’s love is professed

    She’ll return as his character witness

    Parole hearing’s week after next

     

    Then she’ll swear for him on a bible

    And he’ll love her till the moon’s lost its glow

    Till all the birds have run out of songs

    Till darkness is all that she knows

    Till darkness is all that she knows

     

     

     

     

  • 03:26 Lyrics Now & Then

    Now and Then

    Drew James © 2002

     

    I’ll try to do my best for you

    When I’m gone and when I’m next to you

    Short or long, I’ll treasure all the time we spend

     

    I won’t ask if it’s now or never

    I won’t ask will it last forever

    I’ll just ask you to love me when you can

     

    New days color in your eyes

    Makes me lose my sense of time

    When you say you love me now and then

     

    I won’t ask what you see in me

    I won’t ask was it meant to be

    I’ll just ask you to love me when you can

     

    Will you love me now when it seems so easy

    Will you love me now when there’s nothing much to lose

    Now, as the music plays so sweetly

    Now, is what I’ll ask of you

     

    Truth won’t shine on all our wishes

    Maybe rags and never riches

    If things go wrong will you try to understand

     

    I won’t ask you to wear a halo

    I won’t ask you to chase a rainbow

    I’ll just ask you to love me when you can

     

    Will you love me then if it ain’t so easy

    Will you love me then if its everything to lose

    Then, when the violins are weeping

    Then, is what I’ll ask of you

     

    I’ll just ask you to love me when you can

    I’ll just ask you to love me now and then

     

     

  • 04:18 Lyrics Hold On Me

    Hold on Me

    Drew James © 2003

     

    Driving South on Highway 9 my curiosity’s about to win

    My headlights hit the freeway sign and I exit

    To the old hometown again

    Morning stars fade to blue

    Shadows become the places I once knew back then

     

    The first time I left this town I swore that it was for good

    Those words echo through my mind as I drive

    Through our old neighborhood

    Just like a the prodigal son

    As words I once said all come undone

    But it ain’t words that I regret

    It’s your memory that I can’t forget

     

    Your eyes full of wonder

    Glistening in the night

    Your lightning and your thunder

    And all I left behind

    Forever was the promise I could never keep

    But forever you keep this hold on me

     

    I trace a now familiar route that winds around the landmarks of our past

    My mind becomes the stage where all the good times

    And bad times get rehashed

    I’m a prisoner of what could have been

    Of chances I’ll never have again

    So I wander ‘cross this sad old town

    Lookin’ for something that can’t be found

     

    (Chorus)

     

    Though you live here no longer

    This urge to return keeps getting stronger

    I’m still tryin’ to come back home again

     

    To (Chorus)X2

     

    You keep this hold on me (X3)

     

     

     

     

  • 05:17 Lyrics Would You Like To Go Dancing?

    Would You Like To Go Dancin’?

    Drew James © 2000

     

    Fifth of six sisters Elvera Marie

    Worked at the five and dime five days a week selling perfume

    That lined her counter so neat

     

    Her sweetheart was Eddie a truck drivin’ man

    An ex-Navy boxer, a tough guy, a joker

    But his love for her was as gentle as the rain

     

    He’d tell her he’d be by the store about eight

    To give her a ride home, but he’d always be late

    But then he’d come in, with a whistle and grin

    And lean ‘cross the counter and tickle her chin and say

     

    (Chorus) Would you like to go dancin’ tonight?

    The moon’s in the street and the stars are so bright

    I’ll shave and find something snappy to wear

    While you freshen your lipstick and brush out your hair

    If you’d like to go dancin’ tonight

     

    Wedding bells rang on a spring afternoon

    Third floor apartment, fireplace, two bedrooms

    That Vera quit her five and dime job to keep

     

    As Eddie delivered fresh bakery goods

    And cussed at the traffic with a Lucky Strike hung from his lip

    His tan tattooed arm in the wind

     

    And every evening as the sun would grow dim

    She’d sit by the window waiting for him

    The phone call from Eddie, “honey, I might be late”

    A rough day, a flat tire, a closed interstate,

    But when he’d come in, he’d whistle and grin

    And hug and kiss her and tickle her chin and say …

     

    Chorus

     

    Over 25 years their love affair grew

    Then sickness took Eddie, he just couldn’t pull through

    So Vera went back to the five and dime store

    Selling their perfume, just like before

    But now and again, as night settles in

    She’ll lean on the counter, with her hands on her chin and say…

     

    I’d love to go dancin’ tonight

    The moon’s in the street and the stars are so bright

    I’ll bet I’ve got something pretty to wear

    I could freshen my lipstick and brush out my hair

    If I could go dancin’ tonight (X2)

  • 03:29 Lyrics All Your Riches

    All Your Riches © 1999 by Drew James

    All Rights Reserved

     

    Verse 1:

    Willie tips his hat to the ladies in the laundromat

    As the sun shines off the top of his head

    He’s just passing through 34th Avenue

    With its shop windows lined end to end

    He sees business boy suits and black Spanish boots

    And gadgets on the layaway plan

    But nothin’ that competes with a day at the beach

    And a wine speckled nap in the sand

     

    Chorus:

    All your riches ain’t made of gold

    And them greenbacks ‘ll make you grow cold

    All that treasure you store only makes you want more

    Ain’t no pockets on the pants of your soul

    All your riches ain’t made of gold

     

    Verse 2:

    Willie’s extended holiday began on one sunny day

    And has lasted way past 20 years

    Every morning’s like new though there’s nothin’ to do

    But to dangle his feet off the pier

    And the cop on the beat will tap Willie’s feet

    To roust him up just before dawn

    But then pass right on by without battin’ an eye

    As Willie bums change with this song

     

    Repeat Chorus

     

    Bridge:

    When his holiday’s done and his place in the sun

    Is taken as time marches on

    We’ll all forget how much change filled his hat

    But we’ll always remember his song

     

    Repeat Chorus

     

    Ain’t no pockets on the pants of your soul

    All your riches ain’t made of gold

NOTES
Award winning songwriter Drew James, a San Francisco native, began writing and performing his own contemporary folk songs in 1996. He performs his solo act all over the west coast, primarily in the bay area, including the Bread and Roses concert series. Drew’s songs have received airplay in the U.S. and Europe.

His 2007 acoustic CD release "Way Beyond the Maze" is an intimate set of songs, including the 2006 Great American Song Contest award winner "You Can Cry to Me" and the 15th Billboard World Song Contest award winner “Thicker than Blood.” In 2006 he released “The Last Second Chance,” produced by Bruce Kaphan, which was submitted for Grammy consideration. It includes the Billboard Song Contest award winner "That Old Friday Night Feeling." The CD was also featured at the Toofy Film Festival in Boulder, Colorado. He appeared on Shuteye Records’ “United State of Americana” compilation CD that made it to #53 on the Americana Music Association charts in 2005.

“On his The Last Second Chance CD (2006), Drew James has created his own music realm, attractive and hospitable to any Real Music lover, no matter his or her genre preferences. Strictly speaking, the album is recorded in a folk-rock key, but there's so much True Blue feeling in every track that they sound "more Blues" to me than many of the "canonized" 12-bar standards. The arrangements and performance are tasteful and natural, and the production is simply perfect (a George Martin level work done by guitarist Bruce Kaphan). To those yet deciding whether to buy or not this CD, I'd say it'd be one of their best investments, a "long term" one - the more you play this record, the better it sounds. Drew James' music world is a place to stay - "you can check out any time you like, but you can never leave".”
- Paul Bondarovski, Midnight Special Blues Radio

“As Far As I Know subscribes to traditional roots songwriting, but bends the rules slightly by subverting traditional sounds with intimate singer/songwriter blues tones” – Ryan Hoffer, Shuteye Records A&R

Award Winning Songwriter

 

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Upcoming Shows

  • Nov 25
    Belmont Farmers Market, 
     
  • Dec 2
    Los Gatos Farmers Market, 
     
  • Dec 8
    Daly City Farmers Market, 
     
  • Dec 22
    Bayfair Farmers Market, 
     

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