Pagan Soul

Track one from the CD Curse Of Mercury – [Play Pagan Soul]

My intention behind this one was to write an over-the-top proclamation of desire for the beloved (Imagined or Real?) in the spirit of a tune like Johnny Cash’s ‘Cause I Love You. It’s about being in that unreality when you think you would say or do anything–at any cost–to get what you imagine you want.

Meditator_Perry Emge ©2004

Pagan Soul  3:56

Every time I think about you
I wanna jump in my car
I know what I’m going to do
When I come home to you

There’s something about the way you look
That just makes me feel right
You know I’d give up all I have
For just one more night

One more night give me one more night
Hold on tight we’ll never look back
One more night give me one more night
Hold on tight we’ll never look back

Every time I see your face
I can’t forget that look you make
When I hold you close to me
I can forget everything

Every time I feel your touch
I know just why I need you so much
The way you kiss the way you smell
I’m captive under your spell

I’ve got a Pagan soul
You know that I’ll never let go
I don’t care about the price I’ll pay
To be with you one more day
I’ve got a Pagan heart
It won’t stop once it starts
When I hold you close to me
I can forget everything

Lyrics/Music © 2009 Perry Emge
Lyrics Page for Curse of Mercury
photo-collage image Meditator by Perry Emge ©2002

Pan’s Pipes

Track 2 from Curse of Mercury [Play Pan’s Pipes]

This tune began as a system test. En route to my new home in Seattle I stopped in San Diego to visit Rob Medcalf, my long time musical cohort. I was installing a Pro Tools system on his laptop and came up with the basic parts on a whim just trying to test all his plugins and virtual instruments; as I remember I was trying to make Sample Tank work. My original demo was called “On the Beach” and was about getting one’s self together On the Beach as it were. Then I entirely reworked it inspired by the perspective of my amazing Seattle backyard and the things I imagined going on out there in the forest.

http://www.flickr.com/people/croweb/

Pan’s Pipes  3:16

Why don’t you get yourself in order
Why don’t you get yourself together

It’s a simple thing to do
When the Full Moon comes in view
First you’ll have to build a fire
Then you’ll have to breathe the smoke

When you stand before that fire
You start to feel your Spirit rise higher higher

Up in the air where the clouds roll by
Up in the air where the Spirits fly
Deep in the woods where Forest Nymphs live
The Muse delights in hearing Pan’s Pipes
The Muse delights in hearing Pan’s Pipes

Such a simple thing to do
Align your points be sure that you’re in tune
From your circle under the Moon
Align yourself the time will be here soon

You better get yourself in order
Don’t just grasp you better reach
You better get yourself together
Don’t hold back don’t be weak
You better get yourself in order
‘cause here ain’t no one else

Lyrics/Music © 2009 Perry Emge
Lyrics Page for Curse of Mercury
Image ©Ben Crowe

Human

Track 3 from Curse of Mercury [Play Human]

The basic keyboard part this tune is built around is one of those little bits I have been working with off and on for 20 years but never completed until now. The vocal part was inspired by playing with the Access Virus vocorder. I was attracted to the idea of juxtaposing the unnatural mechanical sound against the imagery in the lyric, mimicking how our humanity is so often veiled. The crowning stroke of song form completion for me was the adaptation of the Hafiz poem as a bridge. It fit just right.

03human

Human 2:25

All the time we spend together
Is all the life we know
All the time we spend together
Help each other grow
All the life we have together
Saves us from alone

Even though we’re human warming other hearts
I wish we didn’t have to live so far apart

All the light we have within
We have to let it show
All the light we have to give
To let each other know
All the light we have within
It shines and makes us grow

Even though we’re human warming other hearts
I wish we didn’t have to live so far apart

“Not once after all this time
Has the Sun said to the Earth, you owe me.
Look what a love like that does
It lights the entire sky”*

All at once we come together
And all at once we go
All at once we feel the answer
And yet we never know
All at once we come together
And all at once we go

Even though we’re human warming other hearts
I wish we didn’t have to live so far apart

* © Hafiz 15c Persia
Lyrics/Music © 2009 Perry Emge
Lyrics Page for Curse of Mercury
image Cyborgs Perry Emge ©1975

She Came

Track 4 from Curse of Mercury [Play She Came]

This tune is an oldie for me, but again one that I never was happy about the execution of until now. The previous best version was one I recorded with Greg Lawrence in the mid 90′s, perhaps I’ll post a remix of that version in the future. The version on Curse of Mercury is a good distillation of the previous versions. I always liked playing guitar on this tune. The song lyric is a “fantasy” story I came up with in a dialog with Bill “Billy Hope” Tonn after a night out club-hopping and watching young women ogle boys on stage in cover bands.

04she-came

She Came  3:14

This young girl sweet and sexy
She takes herself to the dance
Sees her favorite boyfriend
Playin’ in the band

She watched him play
She watched him move
Listens to him sing
She knows what she wants to do

He knew he wanted her
He knew it all the time
And when they got together
They didn’t waste a dime

All in one night, all in one night

She came to love him it was clear
She’d show him everything
Before she’d disappear
She came to love him it was clear
She’d show him everything
Before she’d disappear

Oh the girl was hot
Mmm, she could rock

It broke the young girl’s heart
To let the young man go
It broke the young girl’s heart
But she’s in control

She came to love him it was clear
She’d show him everything
And then she’d disappear

All in one night, all in one night

She came to love him it was clear
She’d show him everything
And then she’d disappear

Lyrics/Music © 2009 Perry Emge
Lyrics Page for Curse of Mercury
photo-collage Starry Night Perry Emge ©2002

Shivering Fits

Track 5 on Curse of Mercury [Play Shivering Fits]
This is a tune about sex, drugs, and rock & roll, pretty much in that order, because sometimes too much is never enough.

05shivering

Shivering Fits  3:53

It’ll give you shivering fits
But you won’t call it quits
It’ll take you to your knees
And rob you of all your dreams
If supply meets demand
You’ll take all that you can
You know you should resist
But you love the way it fits

Gives you fits shivering fits the way it fits

You’ve tried them all on for size
To find the one that fits
You’ve taken all you want
But it’s still not enough
After all the books you’ve read
And all that’s left unsaid
You know you should resist
But you love the way it fits

Gives you fits shivering fits the way it fits
Gives you fits shivering fits the way it fits
You love the fit

It’ll chew you up and swallow you whole
Spit you out and still you beg for more
A wild man in a cage
Full of passion full of rage
You know you should resist
But you love the way it fits

Gives you fits shivering fits the way it fits

If supply meets demand
You’ll take all that you can
You know you should resist
But you love the way it fits

Gives you fits shivering fits the way it fits
Gives you fits shivering fits the way it fits
You love the fit

Lyrics/Music © 2009 Perry Emge
Lyrics Page for Curse of Mercury
photo-collage Have Some More Perry Emge ©2001

I’m With You

Track 6 from Curse of Mercury [Play I’m With You]

Yet another remake of an oldie. This is impressionism plain and simple. I almost left this one out of the final cut but was glad I didn’t when someone I respect later told me how much they liked it; you never know.

06im-w-you

I’m With You 3:15

I bite my lip I pull my hair
I look for you but you’re not there
I send you flowers in the night
‘Cause you should know the pure delight
When I’m with you, I’m with you

I bite my lip I pull my hair
I look for you but you’re not there
Come into view I need you

Sailing on the deep blue sea
A desert sky the Sun sets green
When I’m with you
Come into view I need you
Open up my heart and see
Just how real this life can be
I’ll open up my heart and see
Just how real this life can be
When I’m with you, I’m with you

The photographs I took of you
Are not enough they’re nothing new
Like when I’m with you

The magic of the afternoon
Is followed by a rising moon
When I’m with you

Awake again and rising now
The Sun returns and we will too
When I’m with you. I’m with you

Lyrics/Music © 2009 Perry Emge
Lyrics Page for Curse of Mercury
pen drawing One In The Hand Perry Emge ©2001

Transformation

Track 7 from Curse of Mercury [Play Transformation]

I think of this tune as Song 1 on Side 2–if you remember the days of LP’s, where when you’ve gotten through the obvious cuts on Side 1 and now that you’ve flipped it over you expect to hear what “they” really wanted to put on the record. This tune is a pretty literal statement, about letting go of, holding on, clinging and possessiveness that thwarts growth. I also had a poem I needed to put somewhere and this looked like a good place to use it.

07transformation

Transformation 4:14

I don’t know why I can’t let go
Let go of you
I know I should, but it’s no good
I don’t know why I can’t let go
Let go of you

I’m lookin’ for the absolution of my soul
I’m lookin’ for some integration of the opposite poles
I’m workin’ on the transformation that’ll make me whole

Whole, make me whole, make me …
Make me whole, make me whole again, make me whole

Everyone is asleep and the Full Moon wanders
The same dusty books lie against themselves on the shelves
Like we lie against one another
As we lie against one another

Contact transform calling out for
Contact transform holding on now
Contact transform calling out for
Contact transform holding on now

While you wander I’ll be waiting here
While you wander on and on

I am awake now and sense your Full Moon power
Like the tide I pull up against your shore
But you and your Moon wane
And I too retreat into my own depths
The depths of which we can not fathom
Or why your Full Moon wanders

While you wander I’ll be waiting here
While you wonder on and on

Lyrics/Music © 2009 Perry Emge
Lyrics Page for Curse of Mercury
photo-collage Economic Nemonic Perry Emge ©2002

Another Circle

Track 8 from Curse of Mercury [Play Another Circle]

This is one of my current favorites. It is meant to be something of a Zen-like poem. Interestingly the music is nothing like what I had in mind at the out set, and I almost forgot to record it. Luckily I found my “note to self” about it and went back and recorded it last, pretty much in one afternoon.

08another-circle-11Another Circle 3:26

You float like a kite you fly in the night
And dream of the sky all of your life

It’s just another circle in your life
That’s all
You can’t escape the wisdom of it all
It’s just another circle in your life
That’s all
You can’t erase the wisdom from it all

You float like a kite you fly in the night
And dream of the sky all of your life

It’s just another circle in your life
That’s all
There won’t be time to answer for it all
It’s just another circle in your life
That’s all
You can’t go back and find it
It’s too small

I smell success in danger
This could be major
Become the stranger
And bare the pain without anger
Don’t round the answers
And average your chances
Don’t skip the middle
Just to read the last chapter

It’s just another circle in your life
That’s all
You can’t escape the wisdom of it all

You float like a kite you fly in the night
And dream of the sky all of your life

It’s just another circle in your life
That’s all
There won’t be time to answer for it all
It’s just another circle after all
What’s involved
All you have to do is wait and it resolves

Lyrics/Music © 2009 Perry Emge
Lyrics Page for Curse of Mercury
digital image Another Circle Perry Emge ©2004

Aggravations

Track 9 from Curse of Mercury [Play Aggravations]

One of my all-time favorite songs is Nat King Cole’s “Nature Boy”. I spent some time in voice class working on it and one of the side effects was my desire to create a tune in a similar spirit. This is a big departure from my usual mode of writing, but it’s good to reach. I had to enlist “Doc” on this one for the chord changes. I sang the melody to him and he worked it up on guitar, now if I can just get Tony Bennet to cover it.

09aggravations

Aggravations 3:12

All the conversation, all the hesitation
All the aggravations of love

Always close but not quite
Often good but not right
Oh the permutations of love

You keep yourself together
Enough to hold each other
Clinging tight then letting go
All at once
Agreed upon conclusions
Only lead to more confusion
What we resolve is still a mystery
What was clear is getting misty
But when the tears and laughter blend
It all starts up again

All the conversations, all the hesitation
All the aggravations of love

When boys and girls get busy
It’ll make your head go dizzy
From all the variations of love

You keep yourself together
Enough to hold each other
Clinging tight then letting go
All at once
Agreed upon conclusions
Only lead to more confusion
What we resolve is still a mystery
What was clear is getting misty
But when the tears and laughter blend
It all starts up again

All the conversation, all the hesitation
All the aggravations of love
All the invitations, all the complications
All the variation, all the aggravations
Of Love

Lyrics/Music © 2009 Perry Emge
Lyrics Page for Curse of Mercury
pen drawing In The Stars Perry Emge ©2002

Milk

Track 10 from Curse of Mercury [Play Milk]

This is an example of the rare experience of capturing something you usually “forget”. I sang this in my sleep in a dream. I had just moved to Seattle and was reading about alchemist Marsilio Ficino. This dream poem was a distillation of his imagery mixed with my experience as a stranger in a new city.

10milk

Milk 3:25

I need milk, to feed my hungry daughter
I need milk, a little more than water
I need milk, to feed my hungry daughter
I don’t have enough of what it takes to pay
So I’m workin’ on it harder every day

I went down and I stood on the corner
I watched the people as they passed me by
They ignored me and my empty pockets
They ignored me with my handmade cardboard sign

I need time to get myself in order
I need help should I ask a little louder
I need time to get myself in order
When I ask please don’t look the other way
I will pay you back when I find myself one day

It’s hard to find the right solution
It’s not in the news they don’t show it on T.V.
It’s in the dark, the darker all the better
If the stars are what you really want to see

I need milk, to feed my hungry daughter
I need milk, a little more than water
I need milk, to feed my hungry daughter
I don’t have enough of what it takes to pay
So I’m workin’ on it harder every day

We buy and we add to the collection
Of useless things we can do without
And forget about the many things inside us
In the end we can’t live without

It’s hard to find the right solution
It’s not in the news they don’t show it on T.V.
It’s in the dark, the darker all the better
If the stars are what you really want to see
If the stars are what you really want to see
Yes the stars are what you really want to see

Lyrics/Music © 2009 Perry Emge
Lyrics Page for Curse of Mercury
woodcut Universum Camille Flammarion 1888 colored by Heikenwaelder Hugo, Wien 1998