Roots & Bells

by Town Hall

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1.
mary a. mary a. longden the only woman who never died on the grave where her husband lies her name is there but the stone's still bare where that second number should be mary a. mary a. longden born in 1865 st. peter said to have another go hades told her the river was full so she’s still alive but she still lives much the same as she did back then pumps water from the well every morning there's a lesson here, there’s a lesson here 'cause all the woman want to know is how she keeps her old skin so smooth what pills does she take what creams does she use every morning mary a. mary a. longden scientists stand on her porch knocking come on, come on, mary tell us how you live so long ah ah ah ah ah ah! but she still lives much the same as she did back then pumps water from the well every morning there's a lesson here, there’s a lesson here 'cause all the women want to know is how she keeps her old skin so smooth what pills does she take what creams does she use every morning mary a. mary a. longden many say her tale is tall those with eyes that are too small but the grave says so and that’s all I know
2.
Swim Team 03:41
what's that boy hiding walking about town in his swimming suit? there's been no water here for a million years, or maybe more no public pools not even a bathtub he thinks he's so cool so why won't he show us? we saw him teaching himself how to swim on the kitchen floor we saw the bowls that he'd fill to the brim spring water from the store tin foil medallions shining around his neck, he wears them every day he thinks he's the captain of the school swim team it's hard not to laugh 'cause there's no public pools no swim team for miles we think he's a fool always all smiles we saw him bellyflop onto the bed, again and again tv tray diving board, arms above his head, he gracefully descends he spent his money bought a ticket one stop more off the bus he gets a lake a thousand miles away sittin' in that dusty coach all day this is where he was born to be he tastes the air, the humidity the water surrounds his toes and it's finally his time he's taking off his clothes no more of that dry livin' he is goin' swimmin' now ba ba da da da ba ba da da da ba ba ba ba ba da da da ba ba da da da ba ba ba ba
3.
the basement has been flooding for years let's bring those heavy boxes up the stairs and dry them out give the walls a fresh new coat of paint open all the windows, let the sunlight in again weed the garden, polish silverware brush away the cobwebs, we are almost getting there we will fix this house with our own four hands from the inside out you and i will mend we clean out the closet of old clothes tattered, no longer fashionable, oh, how we've grown find a pair for all those single socks we're doing laundry, look how much we've got in common now all the time lost, never talking our poor house just went on rotting but its not too late we're almost getting there we will fix this house with our own four hands from the inside out you and i will mend we will fix this house before summer ends from the inside out we will try again no more sweeping dirt under the rug swallowing what we really want to say no more hiding the story behind those pictures we never liked anyway no apologies on a post-it note inconspicuous on the fridge just tell me how you have been doing all of these uncomfortable years someday our work here will be done but for now, let's keep at it we're almost getting there
4.
Good Boy 03:51
mother always called me her good boy shows you just how little she knows i started as a baby breaking toys now i'm looking for something bigger to throw na na na na na na na na na na na na started a fire on my neighbor's lawn only 'cause i had nothing to do he ran out screamin' 'cause his cats tail got burned off i said, "you better watch out, or i'll do the same to you!" na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na there was a kid in school, called me a freak whipped him up so bad that he could barely speak he kept on fighting, so i tied him to a tree in the middle of the woods the police couldn't find him for a week na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na naaaa naaaa naaa i am proud of what i have done mama's boy, but i have my fun i do what everyone else wants to do so fill the bag with everything that you've got stay right there, don't you pull no hero shit don't you test me, you know i was born bothered and hot give me all your money or the lady right here is gonna get it
5.
Small 04:11
there are times when i consider all the things i've done and looking back now, i may have been wrong but i did it my own stubborn way only way i knew how and since then i've taken some blame for my faults but there's so many inside all of these bloody vaults it's almost impossible to trace their start sometimes all i remember is what i taught to myself with no help from anyone i guess it doesn't really help i feel so small i may be invisible and each morning when i rise, i fill up your cup it's my way of apologizing, i'm working on a better one you're absent you're gone sitting right across from me and every now and then, you'll come back you'll blink your little eye staring at me, thinking, wishing maybe i'd just die but i'm staying here for you it seems right to do sometimes all i can remember is what i taught to myself with no help from anyone i'm sure it doesn't help anyone i feel so small i may be invisible and when i fall, i fall like any man would and when i fall, i fall like any man would and when i fall, i fall like any man would when i fall, i fall like any man
6.
Rockefeller 04:19
mr. rockefeller, can I borrow your suit? got a date tonight going out on the town so i gotta dress right found a hundred dollar bill in the sewer drain now, i could save and ration it out but i'd rather spend it all spend it all in one place some sleep on the curb i find that absurd, i sleep in the park always knew my luck was turning but this proves it, money's meant for burning found myself a payphone got me a reservation so prepare the other patrons for the coming of the king cut my beard on a campbell's can carved my name on a park bench skinned me a rat, made me a hat if you want to be royalty you gotta do that rockefeller i've been watching you studied your habits every type of fork knife and spoon hostess took one look at him waving Franklin in his hand she denied him at the door you're not welcome here old man i will sit right here until they let me in! thought one hundred bucks could buy you anything! i will sit right here until they let me in! thought one hundred bucks could buy you anything!
7.
Alright 03:17
alright, i won’t fight it alright, i won’t fight it i'll learn to love the wires in your eyes all the miles of pipes buried underneath the ground 'cause lips made red by artificial dyes never taste quite right like what it says on the box but we didn’t read it anyway with headphones in our ears all day while everything in the world went chrome we forgot our primary colors we forgot the peach in our cheeks alright, i wont fight it 'cause everyone seems to like it look into my cereal bowl milk and nuts and bolts, but i go on eating bland, so i add more salt and ignore that my mouth is bleeding 'cause i can get a transfusion, easy solution life gets better zap it in the microwave to invigorate life gets better ah ah ah ah ah ah ah ah alright, i won’t fight it alright, i won’t fight it
8.
Charlie 04:16
she looks like an angel in a cloudy cradle passed out on the bed in your room your sweet little darling all she knows is falling down the stairs or in love so charlie got a tattoo on his wrist hoping that she'd stay there like his skin and i'm dying to know if i could win with a heart like hers with a heart like hers she looks like Diana with a leopard in her hands as she leaves holding all of her laundry your sweet little moon beam all she knows is moving down the street or in her sleep so charlie got a tattoo on his wrist hoping that she'd stay there like his skin and i'm dying to know if i could win with a heart like hers with a heart like hers she looks like an actress in her yellow sundress as she smashes the bugs in her apartment your sweet little lady all she knows is fading like a t-shirt or a friend so charlie got a tattoo on his wrist hoping that she'd stay there like his skin and i'm dying to know if i could win with a heart like hers with a heart like hers
9.
Underwater 02:09
stumble down to the water's edge shed our clothes in a frenzy there flash of lightning, but we don't care rivermud in our hands in our hair hold your breath underwater we will stay here till we drown evolution was quite a thing pretty flowers and birds on wing whisky flask turns the clock around we will be fish by the dawn hold your breath under water we will stay here till we drown they say our parents were once like us went outside with holes in their socks then decided their dreams were all talk got jobs and stayed safely ashore hold your breath under water we will stay here till we drown or grow scales gills and fins swim away never be found
10.
hey, i missed you all day while you were at work i painted this picture for you, can't you tell? it's the bird that flew inside our house last week that bird was stubborn but you rescued him with care i kissed you on the cheek with feathers still in your hair you looked just like an indian chief you are my protector, you are my stone wall you make all my troubled seem so awfully small the strongest of hands opening up any jar hot sand at the beach you carry me to the car in your arms so safe from monsters i fear you keep the coast clear i'm never afraid at the country fair nearing summer's end you proved to me you were the mightiest of men holding the hammer in your hand you hit the target and the bell it rang so loud soon competing with the cheering of the crowd you look just like the head of state you are my protector, you are my stone wall you make all my troubled seem so awfully small do do do do do do do do do do do do do! you say come along and i will follow you tell me right from wrong and whole from hollow you are the wisest one that i will ever know the strongest of hands opening up any jar hot sand at the beach you carry me to the car in your arms so safe from monsters i fear you keep the coast clear i'm never afraid
11.
one day I'll bear your last name and I'll write it after mine photograph the children matching sweaters in a line the mountain air will rid you of the broken glass collecting in your spine don't you see this humble life with me would be just fine? we shed our shoes deciduously for boots warm enough to brave the snow walk slow with your arms around me no darkness follows down this path the kindling that we found is burning our children softly wakened by the sound and while the world is quickly turning our little house stays firmly in the ground you don't know me yet i don't know you yet me finding you here is my daunting task this city's too fast just watching my breath don't you see this humble life with me would be just fine? spend your days with me amongst the pine when I find you i will take you far away when I find you i will take you far away when I find you i will take you far away when I find you i will take you far away when I find you i will take you far away when I find you i will take you far away when I find you
12.
Food 03:48
i used to have two stomachs, one for dinner, one dessert the first would fill up quickly and the second always growled and gurgled that news is old. those papers fuel for charcoal fires so i eat to remember daddy made us dinner whenever mama came home late sat at the head of the table when he thought no one was looking a man can cry, he can sincerely empathize, and a woman can bring home the bread i live in the city now i fend for myself i cook family-sized meals for my family sized appetite i eat for two to keep me company but the thing that I'm still missing is somebody to complain to about the trivial things i go to any supermarket, they all look the same i can imagine the exit will open on a familiar parking lot and we'll drive home through the massachusetts hills with our trunk full of groceries

credits

released April 15, 2012

Be sure to also download our free EP "Sticky Notes & Paper Scraps" & our cover EP "Town Hall Plays The Classics, Vol. 1" right here on Bandcamp!

All songs written & arranged by Town Hall (©2012)

Produced by Mason Jar Music & Town Hall
(MasonJarMusic.com)

Recorded & Mixed by Dan Knobler & Jon Seale at Mason Jar Music in Brooklyn, NY

Mastered by Alan Silverman (ArfDigital.com)

Town Hall is:

Stefan Weiner: Vocals, Mandolin, Piano (track 13)

Phoebe Ryan: Vocals, Guitar (tracks 5 & 8,) Omnichord (track 1)

Jesse Kranzler: Guitars, Banjo, Vibraharp, Glockenspiel

Drums - Ian Chang *
Bass - Spencer Zahn

Orchestration by Gabriel Gall (track 2), Jesse Kranzler (tracks 4 & 6), Ian Davis (tracks 8 & 10), & Kris Nolte (tracks 11 & 12)

Flute & Alto Flute - Mike McCoy
Clarinet & Bass Clarinet - Aleks Karjaka
Clarinet - Adam Price
Violin - Rebekah Durham
Viola - Trevor New
Cello - Char Prescott

Trumpet - Corey Dansereau
Trombone - Jon Hatamiya
Tenor Sax - Jas Walton

Vibraphone - Kyle Brightwell (track 9)
Piano - Gabriel Gall (track 8) & Kris Nolte (track 12)
Auxiliary Percussion & Sounds - Jason Burger
Organ, Wurlitzer, Clavinet - Matt Porter
Synth/Sounds Abound - Adam Schatz (track 3)
Background Vocals - The Fine Root Choir

Honeytone - Dan Knobler
Tel-Ray - Jon Seale

Artwork & Layout - Alysha Colangeli

*plus additional band arrangements on track 12

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Town Hall Brooklyn, New York

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