Friday, December 19, 2008

First up...Gypsy Soul

Gypsy Soul by Dave Schipper © 2007 Rose Riversongs

My gypsy soul cries out to grab hold
Of the nearest long haired dancing angel
The sweet violin and the melody unfolds
My hand on her back; and we tango.

The moonlight through the window knows
The passion fire in our hearts tonight.
Your eyes shine brighter than a candle glow.
The blue light gaze, keeps me locked into site.

Oh step in time to my gypsy soul
Oh come to me in my gypsy need
Oh drink with me my gypsy wine
Oh say you are my gypsy love.

Your lips smile as we kiss the first time
Oh yes friends can’t help but laugh out loud
Our foreheads knock, our arms do entwine
Passion isn’t smooth when love is vowed.

The last wine is poured gingerly as we lie
The moonlight reflecting your flesh is lush
All the giggles have turned to purrs and sighs
Our eyes close to the sound of the gypsy hush

notes.... ok so one night I believe Lori was at a Church retreat, I was paging through different books she had out... and I think it as an Anne Lamott book that I found a chapter or short story about loving like a gypsy... free spirit. Well that was all I needed to get my Bohemian blood going. Always thought the song should have a fiddle, but I just can't my son to play along with my dreams. Yes the backup vocals are me too with a little help from garageband effect.

Yes... It became the name of the cd because I am 50% Bohemian, and Zeman (my perfoming name) is picked from my Grandmother's maiden name. Her father's father likely came over on the boat from Europe and settled in Wisconsin. Geez... Bohemia doesn't even exist any more.

The art for the cd was a royalty free graphic tweeked to look a little like an old Eagle's record....

Of course I couldn't refuse to post an iMix with a few of my favorite gypsy songs

Second song, a reimagined Flowers of the Forest

Today we pray for Flowers of the Forest

I heard them laughing, at the sun’s setting
Young girls giggling before the dawn of day.
Now they are sobbing on green grass a growing
The flowers of the forest are laying to rest.

Once they had futures, and love a waiting.
Fathers and Mothers, a life to enjoy.
Then came the call, a service to them all.
A noble cause written, they stood tall and proud.

I heard them laughing, at the sun’s setting
Young girls giggling before the dawn of day.
Now they are sobbing on green grass a growing
The flowers of the forest are laying to rest.

Midnight songs a playing, shots and beer flowing
Smiles all a plenty, til the night is done.
Xcept for the lady, the moon cold and lonely
Thoughts of her flower, are growing inside.

Justice for the lowly, help for the helpless.
Brothers and sisters, a hand to them all.
Now there is silence, though debate rages loudly
These flowers of the forest, victims to the gall.

I heard them laughing, at the sun’s setting
Young girls giggling before the dawn of day.
Now they are sobbing on green grass a growing
The flowers of the forest are laying to rest.

Notes: A traditional song rephrased and rethought for today by Dave Schipper ©2008 Rose Riversongs. I really loved this song from an old Joe Hickerson vinyl "Drive Dull Care Away"... and the melody stuck with me for a long time. This summer while playing instrumental music behind Lori at her Jewelry shows. I picked up this song again, and thought my voice ain't much worse than Joe's so why not cover it. Yikes, I really couldn't see me singing the words when I went back to the record. So I re-wrote them to touch on a few of the passions I was hearing in today's young women waiting for their loves to come back from Iraq or Pakistan.

I really didn't think it would make it on the cd but then I was amazed that Nichola Maria O'Donnell took me up on my request to sing lead. Boy is her voice right for the song. It was after she did this that I was pushed to finish the cd and post it through as a digital release.

Here was the English translation of the Scottish song:

I've heard the singing, at the ewe-milking,
Lassies a-singing before dawn of the day;
But now they are moaning on every milking-green;
"The Flowers of the Forest are all withered away".

Sorrow and woe for the order sent our lads to the Border!
The English for once, by guile won the day,
The Flowers of the Forest, that always fought the foremost,
The pride of our land lies cold in the clay.

I've heard the singing, at the ewe-milking,
Lassies a-singing before dawn of the day;
But now they are moaning on every milking-green;
"The Flowers of the Forest are all withered away".

I got those from WikiPedia.

So what do you think? My version is pretty true to the original feeling of the song that has become a funeral melody done on bagpipes.... none on my song... just a wonderful woman's voice.

So now that I'm armed an dangerous with my Web Cam You Tubes... why not an instrumental version of the song merged with the Beatles classic, Norwegian Wood.

Thirdly ... St. James Infirmary

WikiPedia's history is a good place to start, has the lyrics that are pretty much what I used from an old book I had, but this one has a twist landing to get to my recording. Leslie Alexander wrote up a St. Paul's Infirmary song that she put on her 2nd cd and I loved it. I had no hard recollection of any of the history to the St. James song. When I decided to record it, I thought it would be fun to have Tim Kolek add a keyboard to it... he made it sound like an accordion... wow... it's a keeper and belonged to be third on the CD... thanks Tim.

St. James Infirmary

I went down to St. James Infirmary
To see my baby there,
She was lyin' on a long white table,
So sweet, so cool, so fair.

Went up to see the doctor,
"She's very low," he said;
Went back to see my baby
Good God! She's lying there dead.

I went down to old Joe's barroom,
On the corner by the square
They were serving the drinks as usual,
And the usual crowd was there.

On my left stood old Joe McKennedy,
And his eyes were bloodshot red;
He turned to the crowd around him,
These are the words he said:

Let her go, let her go, God bless her;
Wherever she may be
She may search the wide world over
And never find a better man than me

Oh, when I die, please bury me
In my ten dollar Stetson hat;
Put a twenty-dollar gold piece on my watch chain
So my friends'll know I died standin' pat.

Get six gamblers to carry my coffin
Six chorus girls to sing me a song
Put a twenty-piece jazz band on my tail gate
To raise Hell as we go along

Now that's the end of my story
Let's have another round of booze
And if anyone should ask you just tell them
I've got the St. James Infirmary blues

Fourth ... Family Tree

Family Tree © Roseriversongs 2005 David Schipper

Take a little walk right back in time
Feel the wind cool the warm sunshine
Grab the hand of the one you love
Feel the love lookin from above

Just a branch in the family tree
They’re just folk like you & me
Sim’lar eyes, ears, hands & weight
We’re all linked to a common faith

Promenade to a dosey do
Family history we ought to know
Cowboy boots and petticoats
Dancin to the old timey notes


In a farm house out of town
Friends all meet & gather round
Once a year in mid-July
They all travel far & wide

Sing & dance and have some fun
Exactly why they always come
They all leave with memories
Branches of a family tree

Instrumental based on verse
End with the first verse

Notes:... ok this one started while driving back from Manitowoc. Lori and Dustin asleep in the car... I don't remember if I did the old jotting notes while driving; maybe. Lynn and Lori laughed at one part and had me change it (yes for the better) and Tim & Paula were schnuckered into adding a chorus behind me after church practice one night. This song has been entered in contests but has never one; they were wrong, weren't they?

Here's an impromptu video.

Take the Fifth... Opposite Destiny

Opposite Destiny

The story of Romeo and Juliet just ain’t true.
Lies perpetuated to give false hope to a few.
Opposites may be attracted but they aren’t destined.
In fact they are lucky to even get mentioned.

I walk these streets daily and see the races unite
The Goths aren’t the only who choose to isolate
The voice of the crowd mumbles into noisy chaos.
The thoughts of the few independent are crushed.

I go along walking to find a pocket of a chosen few.
Those young gifted talents still play in silence too.
Is this nature’s destiny, a dumbing of the culture?
Are we just dead meat on the block of the butcher?

SHOUT, SCREAM at the top of your lungs you fool.
But you won’t, because you have been schooled.
Act the part of a door knob and be turned again.
You’re where you are, and where you’re destined.

Lyrics by Dave Schipper © 2007 Rose Riversongs
Music by Kim Davidson © 2007

Notes... it was in March and it was a weird day. First I stayed home until I went to watch Dustin do a recital at highschool in front of a judge. Then off to work, a thirty minute drive. Then I left early because of snow, only to get home to find out that Dustin's violin lesson was still on and I needed to get BACK in the car and drive 20 minutes the other way. While sitting in the car this dark poem was written. You can find in it the noisy high school, the gifted musicians practicing in their silent rooms, and you can see that I was a little ticked about something during the day. Well I kind of liked it so I posted it to my DaveZeman MySpace blog, and Kim Davidson really liked it... before the night was done, she sent me the first demo. Just about floored me.

Next, she made a better recording of it, and passed it to me. Simply her and that deep Martin guitar... I added the rest of the instruments. I think it's wonderfully dark.

Sixth is a gem... Unsaid

Unsaid by Dave Schipper © 2006 Rose Riversongs

Your face, your eyes, you fill up my night dreams
Your words, your lies, take me to brink of screams
One day, you’ll see, there was nothing wrong with me
Til then, just breathe, the air of stupidity

Messages replayed
Chapters reread
Memories downplayed
But words can’t go….. unsaid.

That night dance floor, you said we would never part
Warm kiss drinks poured, held each other thru the dark
Then came that night, I caught you in another’s arms
Nough said, that bites, flip the bird you have such charm

Back off, you witch, did I say you are a whore?
Your loss, I’ll catch, a good woman to adore
Drink up last call, the first night of your regret
You’ll wind up small, wonderin’ where your friends all went

Notes: Ok Paula thought this one could be a Rose River song someday but Whore's got to go... Now... It could be bore without any problem, but com'on... when you're really ticked at someone you get seriously nasty about them. I don't know exactly where this feeling came from but I always wanted to give it to a friend named Jim. My little lead guitar was done with Ruby.... a guitar I sold to Lynn.

Seventh Heaven? Baptized in Blood

Baptized in the blood of a lamb
Drowning under the weight of salt
Crushed by the power of light
And here I am, here I stand

A marked generation to fire
But today is not the same
Told stand down, never fight
In his blood I bathe, in his blood I bathe

No matter what you say, WHAT YOU SAY
No matter what you say, GAMES YOU PLAY
It's all the same

For I'm drowning under the weight of salt
And I'm dying from the inside out
I won’t be you because I know
What this blood about, What this blood about

No matter what you say, I AM NOT YOU
No matter what you say, I WON’T BE YOU
It's all the same

(c) 2007 Dave Schipper & Brad Beneke

Notes: Brad Beneke and I had been readers of each other's blog; and I loved to tease Brad that he's my angry friend. Some day we will meet since he's only two hours away, but he asked me if I could finish a song that he thought he had a Screamo Punk Christian band going to cover and it fell thru. I believe this song I didn't edit much of the lyrics except for maybe eliminating some lines. I never thought I would ever be a Screamo kind of guy, and I do think that ultimately a Screamo band could cover it. At least now they know how an old fart who sounds like Johnny Cash would cover it. HA.

Eight is a trip..Diamonds on her Shoes

Diamonds on her Shoes by Dave Schipper Rose Riversongs © 2005

She’s got diamonds on her shoes, she’s paid her dues
She’s slick as a cat, and that’s a fact.
Street worn, some bed sheets torn
Call her late, it’s worth the wait

The night is filled with souls like her
The devil has his cards laid out
It’s deuces wild, with Jacks better
Tonight the stakes might just be lights out

It’s just a sales trip, the Jack lets slip
Pocket full of cash, and his mind of ash
A night full of tricks, next day full of shit
He called her late, and it spelled his fate.

Back on the street, she does compete
She’s slick as a cat, and known for that
More diamonds on her shoes, she doesn’t lose
Call her late, and test your fate.

Notes: I really have no experience with a prostitute... really believe me. I have read stories, watched movies, and listened to truck drivers talk about lot lizards, so maybe that's where this came from. I do travel for work at times, but I do wonder about the professional sales person's life on the road. I believe this lyric is fun because it twists the popularity of poker, a pun twist of a John into a Jack, and it uses what everyone thinks is Paul Simon's song... but it isn't it mine... fttttttppp.

It also went thru a revision. It was first written and demo'd slow and bluesy like a Tom Waits song. I picked up the tempo the second recording. Here's a version of how it sounded originally.

Oh this is so me.... This Lady

This Lady by Dave Schipper © 2007 Rose Riversongs

Dressed all in black for a job in the city
She’s a lady who knows she’s a carved beauty
It doesn’t stop her from being a warm soul
This lady knows how to smile to the boys.

And when she tells you you’re table’s ready
You’d rather say that’s ok just come back
She’ll just smile and say come along Davey
You can tease your waitress, yep it’s Beth.

It wasn’t long ago that she was a mess
With jerk and a half and little to much meth
Now she loves that face she sees in the mirror
There’s no more tears running down her long neck.

And when she tells you you’re table’s ready
You’d rather say that’s ok just come back
She’ll just smile and say come along Timmy
You can tease your waitress, yep it’s Cath.

She pats the back of the guy with table 9
Smiles to the old fart who’s got that glossy shine
Check’s her device for the next open table
And knows she’s watched more than the local cable.

And when she tells you you’re table’s ready
You’d rather say that’s ok just come back
She’ll just smile and say come along Terry
You can tease your waitress, yep it’s Jacq.

Notes: written after I totally was in awe about a woman I saw hostess at the Cheesecake Factory in Jacksonsville FL. We were on Christmas vacation, and while the family was talking I was observing. I am an unabashed flirt, but nothing ever comes from it, because I'm as loyal as a dog loves dirt. That's a line I'll use some day, but it's true. This Lady's story is likely not true, but she was a carved beauty all in black, and I watched her more than the tv's strategically placed through out the restrurant. ;-)

And tonight... a video addition.

Eleventh Drifted Away?

Drift Away is recorded in a style with partial chords that could remind you of the Band America. I used a little knowledge of Rob and Sonya of how friends got them together, and weaved it together with a couple I watched at lunch at the Taco John's. I've written there alot. I have a ton of stuff I love that never got into this cd... oh well buy it alot and it will encourage me to finish.

Drift Away by Dave Schipper © 2006 Rose Riversongs

White roses and a glass of zin
Take me back to where we began
A small café with a deck outdoor
With so many laughs to explore

Don’t you find it easier to drift away?
Let your mind replay a perfect day.
Would the same words be in play?
Free yourself and just drift away

Friends behind the scene wrote the plot
A chance meeting we would think not
We Both remember when we first met
It took two years to get the date set

Today the café is Taco Johns
A quick lunch with our little ones.
A few words within wild foray
And maybe a dream to drift away

12--- Phonograph Blues

by Brad Beneke / Dave Schipper

Cigarette ash bridges the gap
From this nicotine stained soul
From the lip to the thought of this…
With a gin and tonic tabled halo

Angels singing somewhere south of heaven
A cancer stick a guitar lick
Hides the lies behind my personal heroin
In time to remind you of where you’ve been

A somber tune, in the key of blue
A phonograph recollection’s score
A verse covered in years of abuse
Like similar hands covered in scars chorus

The Washburn’s a little out of tune
Transcending sin and salvation
Just a gypsy singing right along
A communion of damnation Chorus

You never quite see what you mean
Secret thoughts once thought forgot
A man abandoned lost the dream
And the song ends without applause

But you never knew… what you meant
It was over the moment you left
Though the song still plays outloud
Haunt me from beyond your grave


In time to remind you of where you been

notes.... Another collab... this one we tweaked the words together a bit before I recorded a demo in the tradition of Bruce's Nebraska LP... very raw and stripped down. I thought that was right for it, so I left it alone.

13 --- 200 Left Turns

200 Left Turns Dave Schipper © 2007 Rose Riversongs ASCAP

Grab the wheel, and let’s go racin’
It’s Saturday, and I’ve started my engine
It’s the best thing you can do in dirt
Get ready for 200 left turns,
and one dang sweaty T-Shirt

Rev the engine, and pound the floorboard
Seconds are wastin’ in this old ford
There’s not a place I’d rather be
Get ready for 200 left turns,
and best dang race you’ll see.

Turn one, two, three four in a blur
Just hear those 8 cylinders purr
There’s a chump on my butt
We’re in it now 200 left turns
The dirt’s loose, eat my dust.

The jerk has spun me out
I scream some curses loud
From the dust cloud I ride
Out in search of his behind

Watch out honey, and don’t go pacin’
Racin’ is as natch to me as blinkin’
I’ve got my site set on a win tonight
I’m in it for 200 left turns,
and one dang grinding dog fight.

My friends help on my chasin
They know some bad blood is brewin
He sees me in his rear view mirror
I’ve got him in the next two turns
Just call me his cold shiver

I’m spitting his dust as the white flag flys
Every cylinder is giving it’s best try
You can see the fans stand to cheer
We just took our last left turn
And damn I’ll have to buy him a beer

Notes: maybe CD's usually only have 12 songs because no artist want to pick a song as the unlucky 13th? Well just for that I put this unlucky dirt track driver in the spot. The inspiration came from a bumper strip about Driving in Dirt... I don't remember it completely ... but it got me started. I had Jenny review all the facts to make sure I had the racing lingo right; and the percussion sounds like an oil can pumping in the background... It was an effect in garageband.... I picked it and just had to leave it in... it even wobbles back and forth from the left to right channel. HA.

16 Eight is Midnight ROSE RIVER live from the Freight House

Eight Is Midnight by Kolek/Schipper © Roseriversongs 2005

Tim tells his sad tale to some bad scotch
Margaretville, is all Dave’s got
Paula has a 5 O’clock blonde attitude
So crank up the sound and get in the mood

Follow the Mississippi moon shadow
Down Little Creek Road for dancing tonight
There’s a keg of the king so get down low
We’ll push back the clock, so eight is midnight

Adeline is fine for sweet cherry wine
But Sue’s on the edge cause it’s quittin time
We’ll drink Lynnie’s Lakewood Blues and be
Back to the keg king and good company


Our Ramblin Boy stops by with a friend
With guitar in hand and songs he penned.
So turn down the sound, and grab a chair
He’ll paint you a dream and take you there

note: Oh this one is fun... Rose River Live... I started writing this in the car after I saw a sign for Little Cedar Road. Of course my handwriting in the car while driving I thought it was Creek later. The song was really going nowhere and I forgot about it until Tim showed up a Sue's Birthday party with a demo of the piece that he wrote to it. He fixed it up and created the chorus. Later Shelly added a cool flute part. It's in every major set Rose River puts out.... Some day we'll get together and really record it with balance, bass and maybe even DRUMS.

The song is a patchwork of song titles, Scotch is a song Tim wrote. Margaritaville, 5 O'Clock Somewhere, Blonde Attitude, Moonshadow, Adeline, Lakewood Blues, Ramblin Boy, and Dream. Plus the line turn back the clock came from Finnegan's wake. So now you know the rest of the story.

Sweet 17...Denim & Lace

Denim and Lace

Seems like everythings broke, including me
Ex-wife called for her alimony.
The price of gas just hit record highs
All you can do is stand a sigh

He can’t complain about his day ahead,
his mind is wanderin off to me instead.
Come Friday it’ll be just him and me
Good food, some beer and little TV.

Escape from the rat race,
Take a left on Chase street,
They're serving denim and lace,
At Linda's place.
They're serving denim and lace,
At Linda's place.

Linda works at the diner all day
Servin’ those with too much to say
Then it’s hurry home and get the kids fed
do the wash, and off to bed.

I don’t complain ‘bout the routine stuff
There’s more of life to really love
My sites are set to dad’s weekend
and a little time with him to spend.


Linda and I someday will tie the knot,
When the kids see just who I am not.
We’ve got a plan to keep this love alive
Pretty nice feeling when your 45.

Love after forty is not a bad thing
Don’t let them tell you that we can’t sing
Timing is something that you can’t control
But when you find the time just grab hold.

Authors note... just a little duet penned on the way to work... another live recording with Rose River. Paula sings the lady part and she sing "Don't let them tell you that YOU can't sing".... I was always meaning to ask her if that was deliberate. Now I truly think this song should be covered by some country singers when they get in their 40's... but do they ever age, they always seem so young? This one was really written in the car on the way to work, but Lori didn't have any editing on this one.

bonus track... 19

Abilene is a town I have never seen... I found the chords in a traditional song book and I always thought it was written by the late Bob Gibson who I admire. I believe the copywrite must have lapsed... if it hasn't ... I bet I'm going to pay for this one.