Category Archives: song lyrics

To Be Perfectly Honest

Honesty is an elusive quality is it not?

“You don’t make money telling the truth”

So what do you do? Confess  to anyone who will listen?

Pray?
Despair?
Deny?

I like the third option. My life in music has been one of a denial of reality in one sense and a keen awareness of it in another. It’s like there are two Lukes. The one who made Make Room and the one who made High Risk.  Working on the new album I discover a hybrid of the two.

The song – Honesty off the Reha album lyrics are below

Well I see you’re pretty young
And you’ve got a fine degree
And you look so beautiful
That you’d make the blind man see

When I saw you – I just knew
That you would be a friend to me
And I would be a friend to you
We could share some honest company

Honesty (honesty) means a lot to me
Honesty (honesty) means a lot to me

Cause a man could fall in love with you
If you gave him half a chance
But I wonder if this love is true
Or is it just romance

Just romance
Just romance

Honesty means a lot to me
Honesty, honesty means a lot to me

Honesty, honestly means a lot to me
Honesty, honestly means a lot to us – yes it does

Yes it does.

I wrote this song in the days when I visited Auckland to get a break from Dunedin. In those days no one busked. One day I was busking in Vulcan Lane  one very quiet mid afternoon in summer. When I say quiet…it was dead and I was playing at the High St end near the hot potato and yoghurt ice cream shop (a very popular lunch spot but it went broke on account of cash being extorted from the business on a daily basis).
A wonderful elderly gentleman was dancing to the music I played one very quiet mid afternoon in summer. When I say quiet…it was dead.

To give you an idea of how conservative Auckland was in those days way back in the mid 80s….The lady in the hot spud shop called the cops and had him arrested. The bottle he had been holding  was confiscated and left with her. She put it in my guitar case probably assuming it was a bottle of turps or something.Taking it out of its brown paper bag I discovered a brand new unopened bottle of Napoleon brandy.

Thank God things have changed. Nowadays you could dance naked  in Vulcan Lane and no one would complain
There was a girl who would often passed by  walking her dog .She was always friendly and appreciated the music. Few there were who did .So  bedazzled was I….and imagined her to be closer to an angel than a human. Young men worship beautiful women and this sometimes inhibits their ability to strike up a meaningful dialogue. Romance was out of the question….her being so perfect and unreachable.Just as well. Probably would hve been big trouble!

In the years since its dawned on me that society rewards  dishonesty. “You don’t make money telling the truth”…and commerce thrives on war.

But I wasn’t to know that then and still feel more drawn to the light than to the darkness but I’m just as much a creature of the night as the next guy…which leads to another song in another blog coming up soon

 

“If you do not tell the truth about yourself you cannot tell it about other people.”
Virginia Woolf

“The simple step of a courageous individual is not to take part in the lie. “One word of truth outweighs the world.”
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

Be safe and please respond if you have a thought for this little guy

Human good will

Recently i returned to Countdown. This is what i saw.

20140716_074911

20140716_074853

20140716_074900

So there it is. More like a correction centre than a shop. If someone wants to share music with customers surely that is a human right? The ownership of the land and building surely does not give the owner authority to prohibit human activity that is encouraging human goodwill.

Check out the parking contract. It’s absurd.

20140716_074812

Check out the (The Sound) video Simon Raby directed which was shot in this same shop when it was called Foodtown The girl played by Zippora Seven has a shopping list of valuable, abstract things she needs to find.


Why in Gods name don’t the operators of these places offer some scope for human goodwill?

Why are mega shops only interested in the customers money and void of interest in the customer as a living breathing human soul?

I raised these points with the managers and they told me “You win” Limited Liability is a fantasy. We cannot keep giving human rights to money machines. “Man does not live by bread alone”

This is the age of the civilised robot

I wrote a song called “Shadow Of The Factory”
At that time I was working at a slaughterhouse
Hosing down beef carcasses and listening to Hamlet on my sony walkman…

Here is that song. BTW – my Best of Album is now on bandcamp

The headphone speakers were installed inside ear muffs
I was pleased with my innovation
My dayjob was merely theatre
The Royal Shakespeare Company performed Hamlet with me in my little world of slaughter
Nice

All day long I would ride up and down on my pneumatic platform high pressure hosing down the bodies swaying on their hooks
I had the cleanest job on the line until………

One day I was shown another job ..this time in the offal department separating entrails.
The guy who showed me this job was-I thought- just being friendly and letting me see another side of the work being done in our house of horrors

I told him I was very happy I didn’t have to work in his department and thanks for showing me another side of the works.

He told me to wait a minute while he had a chat to his boss When he returned he announced cheerfully “Guess what your new job is?”

In my spare time I used to get wasted in The Tai Pei owned by Eddy Chin. He didn’t book me too often cause I wasn’t a BAND. One act he booked called COOL BANANAS didn’t turn up. His response was “They not Cool Banana..they rotten banana”

I felt like a rotten banana myself in those days. I was writing my best stuff but the venues paid nothing for original acts (they still don’t) Furthermore no one knew what I was on about

I wrote the Shadow Of The Factory to unburden myself of the sense of meaninglessness I was feeling in my work. I invented a factory and a disgruntled worker and put them in a song

“I worked for years and your factory
You say there’s no more work for me
For what its worth I’d work for free
For what its worth in your plastic money
You phase me out
You phase me out
I live in fear
Cold as ice
Just as clear
That you only be so strong
While the power is on
When the big fuse blows
Gonna have to go
Digital watch don’t tick or tock
This is the age of the civilised robot
Profit for the big think man
Do you fit that big think plan?”

A disgruntled factory employee is laid off by the factory boss who later re-employs him as a golf caddy
First opportunity the factory gets to automate what he’s doing
And he’s gone
All done with “plastic money” by masters of high finance

The last verse has our disgruntled working class hero playing his part in the leisure industry
His boss makes him an offer he can’t refuse
He reflects thus
“Pretty soon you gonna say
I can work as you play
Hey Louie be my caddie today
36 holes and I plainly see
36 holes in the shadow
Of the factory”

So he gets a new job working on the golfcourse next to the factory he used to work in
Same boss lower pay the shadow of the old world cast across the new

I am told that the NSA is known as the shadow factory
I had no way of knowing this then of course
I will have to sue the NSA for stealing my phrase
Ha ha

“This is the age of the civilised robot”

We can survive but do we have to dump heart and soul to do it?

“Not worth to do that” as Eddy Chin would say. What do you think?

Duvalier – Haiti Revisited

Haiti has been the news lately because the big quake there was a year ago.
The Duvalier song (on Reha album) was written about Haitian history. Jean Claude

“The former ruler left Haiti in 1986 after a 15-year rule plagued by corruption and a crumbling economy.” After the quake Duvalier bizarrely pledged $8 million to the Red Cross.

He now lives in Paris and best estimates of his fortune are in the hundreds of millions – all suspected of being dishonestly obtained from the nation. Song lyrics for Duvalier are below with a player so you can listen to this song.

You took the money from my people
You took the bell from the steeple
You took my only hope away
Jean Claude Duvalier

And if greed were a virtue
I know that nothing would hurt you
If corruption were quaint
You’d be some kind of living saint

Duvalier Duvalier
you took the money and you ran away
Duvalier Duvalier
you took the money and you ran

Who was that beautiful lady
The one by your side
The one O so well dressed
The one you had to hide

Who was that beautiful lady
The queen of every shopping spree
Live a life of luxury back in gay Paree

Duvalier Duvalier
you took the money and you ran away
Duvalier Duvalier
You took it back to France

Now that suffering has come to you
And you’re scraping for a franc or two
When you know just what to do
I guess you’ll turn around

You took the money from my people
You took the bell from the steeple
You took my only hope away
Jean Claude Duvalier

Jean Claude Duvalier
Jean Claude Duvalier

For more see link below.

Update: Duvalier died in 2014.

More thoughts on The Sound

Here are some thoughts about my song “The Sound.”

100 years ago, Albert Einstein published three papers that rocked the world.

These papers proved the existence of the atom, introduced the theory of relativity, and described quantum mechanics.

Pretty good debut for a 26 year old scientist, huh?

His equations for relativity indicated that the universe was expanding. This bothered him, because if it was expanding, it must have had a beginning and a beginner.

Since neither of these appealed to him, Einstein introduced a ‘fudge factor’ that ensured a ‘steady state’ universe,  one that had no beginning or end.

But in 1929, Edwin Hubble showed that the furthest galaxies were fleeing away from each other, just as the Big Bang model predicted. So in 1931, Einstein embraced what would later be known as the Big Bang theory, saying,

“This is the most beautiful and satisfactory explanation of creation to which I have ever listened.”

He referred to the ‘fudge factor’ to achieve a steady-state universe as the biggest blunder of his career.

Einstein’s theories have been thoroughly proved and verified by experiments and measurements. But there’s an even more important implication of Einstein’s discovery.

Not only does the universe have a beginning, but time itself, our own dimension of cause and effect, began with the Big Bang.

That’s right — time itself does not exist before then. The very line of time begins with that creation event. Matter, energy, time and space were created in an instant by an intelligence outside of space and time.

About this intelligence, Albert Einstein wrote in his book “The World As I See It” that the harmony of natural law

“Reveals an intelligence of such superiority that, compared with it, all the systematic thinking and acting of human beings is an utterly insignificant reflection.”

He went on to write,

“Everyone who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the Universe– a spirit vastly superior to that of man, and one in the face of which we with our modest powers must feel humble.”

Pretty significant statement, wouldn’t you say?

The Sound – Lyrics and (See video The Sound on YouTube)

Pascals Song

“Thought constitutes man’s greatness”

Blaise Pascal: 17th century philosopher and mathematician.

I stumbled across pascal from my reading of quotation books.

Reading quotations is a good way to trigger ideas for songs. Pascal writes about how man is a reed…

A seemingly weak thing in nature

and yet
he is great thru his capacity to think
and it is this capacity
which gives him a valid place in an infinite universe
so that there is a counterbalance to extreme alienation.
The capacity to think
softens the blow of the outside vastness
by offering us a vast universe inside also!
a taste of some of his insights.

“Reason never wholly overcomes imagination, while the contrary is quite common”.
Voila!
explains how: a hamburger chain can take over the world!
“Atheists should say things that are perfectly clear
Now it is not perfectly clear that the soul is material”
Bingo!
No one can prove the soul to be material!
Pascal draws attention to the hidden nature of God ” “this is the
very name which he gives himself in scripture “Deus absconditus”

(hidden God) “He will only be perceived by those who seek him with all
their whole heart”

Love the urgency with which he implores us to think about our fate

“The immortality of the soul is something of such vital importance to
us,affecting us so deeply,that one must have lost all feeling not to
care about knowing the facts of the matter”

Such thoughts as these gave me the inspiration to write “Pascal’s Song” at a time when my marriage was over and the family was broken and my only hope was in “the beyond” . Such a vast and imponderable condition and it was explored to the max.

Positively lived and breathed alienation for years and that is how “High Risk” was born. No pictures on the cover (good policy) and a bunch of songs about the vastness within and the vastness without.

There is a third verse that never got sung on this track……the lyrics go like this

“The universe could crush us
And leave us for dead
Yet chooses to love us
And protect us instead
With a love so deep
And a love so wide
A kind of love
That can’t be defined”

Hope you have a nice day and thank you for taking an interest! Your thoughts please! Go Well
Luke

Mona Lisa

(Scroll to the bottom of this page to read song notes by Luke.)

I’m in love with the Mona Lisa
Through plate glass they let me see her
Winning smile millions feed her
I’m in love with the Mona Lisa

Take your plastic money your color T.V.
Sell it with your house if you want to go see
A Leonardo Da Vinci
Well that’s good enough for me

Sold my house sold my car
I even sold my Martin guitar
Sold my house sold my car
I even sold my Stratocaster
I was going to get to see a Leonardo Da Vinci
It’s good enough for me if it’s good enough for you

Cruising high in a 747
Cruising high feeling like I’m in 7th Heaven
Air Hostess pours a G & T I’m feeling right friendly
But you’re not (the) Madonna

Got to Paris took a taxi to the Louvre
Feeling jet lag (but just like Madonna I’m in the groove)
And there’s Japanese Cantonese Lebanese
Vietnamese Taiwanese Siagonese Ceylonese
Turning into Sri Lankese Kiwis & god damn Yankees
They’re not singing my song they’re singing Paul Simon . . . They’re singing

I got a Nikon camera
Gotta take a photograph
Momma don’t take my Kodachrome away . . . cause

When I got to see that picture
cut those social financial strictures
When I got to see her
She was just a . . . Like that national TV Commercial
With a crack in the plate glass
But she’s got no arse . . .

. . . I’m in love with the Mona Lisa
I’m in love with a Leo Nardo Da’Vinci
I’m in love with a British Airways Hostess
Who’s nice to me
I’m in love with Madonna
In the groove
Jet lagged dirty yeah
See you later

Up until now my knowledge of Europe is based on childhood memories of holidays in Rome mixed with memories of movies seen since….”Mona Lisa” was inspired by Eli’s comments about The Louvre and how visitors seem to virtually ignore the variety of its great works in preference for the most famous ones and in this song you’ve got the whole cast of snake oil merchants trying to sell us anything and everything…………

“Do you want to buy a watch or a dee wee dee”. The last line of the song which I didn’t add in this recording goes “And now they’re trying to tell me that its the old boy himself in drag”.

My understanding of Leonardo is that he made his fortunes inventing weapons of war  (be great to get some information from readers about thoughts on Leonardo).

The “Big OE” is something that is a part of our culture here (NZ) being that we are so isolated. Why do we have to have an OE (again it would be cool to get some ideas on this issue). Write a comment below.

———————
Listen to the song here.