Destination Unimportant

by BeJae Fleming

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credits

released January 6, 2006

Musicians
BeJae Fleming - acoustic guitar, vocals
Jackie Blount - fretless bass
Al Clarke - electric guitar
David Zollo - keyboards
Steve Hayes - drums
Patrick Brickel - percussion

All songs by BeJae Fleming (Utopia Road Music, BMI) except:
Run At the Moon, BeJae Fleming and Lou Allison (Utopia Road Music, BMI)
Long Way Home and Dull Ache, BeJae Fleming and Al Clarke (Utopia Road Music, BMI)
Rudy's, BeJae Fleming and Andy Fleming (Utopia Road Music, BMI)
Hard Wheels and Last Train to Memphis, BeJae Fleming (Utopia Road Music, BMI) and Jack Norton (Feed Cap Music, ASCAP)

Produced by David Zollo

Recorded, Mixed, Mastered by Patrick Brickel, PZM Studios, Iowa City, IA (2005)

Layout by Elizabeth Oxler; Photos by Matt Kollasch.

Special thanks to Jim Ritchey ans Victor Sanders for their gentle, but persistent mentoring, to Leigh Adcock for her generous help with booking, and to the Iowa Arts Council for support and funding.

This recording is for Nick Clarke, Rocco Zollo, Sophia Fleming, Tula Brickel and Isabella Fleming: Carry on.

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BeJae Fleming Ohio

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Track Name: Will You Meet Me
Will You Meet Me

(Chorus)
Will you meet me by the water
Will you meet me at the Gates
Will you meet me just as we both are
Will you meet me halfway

I come to you with a weathered beauty
I come to you with a stormy past
I come to you with a tempered spirit
I come to you with hope held fast

(Chorus)

I wrote you into my future
I wrote you in my memories
Fate wrote me a long and twisted road to you
Fate wrote that you would wait for me

(Chorus)

We had danced in the dark of confusion
We have danced in the arms of delight
It is the dance of our lives together
It is the give and the take that we dance tonight

(Chorus)

(Chorus changed to)
I will meet you …
Track Name: Hurricane Season
Hurricane season, storm coming fast
Homeless huddled underneath the 10th Street overpass
Traffic headed one way, the ocean swells and heaves
The cautious getting out before it’s too late to leave
Wind screams through the alleys in the seedy part of town
It’s hurricane season, rain’s coming down

Hurricane season, sounds like a howling moan
Wires snap and sizzle, electricity is gone
The faithful pray to Jesus to lead them to the light
The disbelievers tremble in a holy ghost night
Sirens wail, thunder rolls, dogs bay in their yards
It’s hurricane season rain’s falling hard

Hurricane season, eye of the storm
Everything quiet, won’t be for long
Deserted buildings, boarded-up glass
Everything waiting for the next blast

Hurricane season, the smart ones get away
Only fools who look for trouble and the long-forgotten stay
Waiting out the devastation waiting for some saving grace
Waiting for the transformation to take place
Waiting for the awful cleansing and the born-again new
It’s hurricane season and I’m waiting – waiting for you
Track Name: When It Comes to You
When it comes to you it’s like a blinding flash
It’s never going to happen, she’s never going to ask
You to crawl through her window on some summer night
It takes you by surprise, for so long you told yourself she might
Just change her mind about you, she might change her ways
When it comes to you’re so amazed
When it comes to you

When it comes to you, you don’t let it in
You close your eyes, close your door, choose to fool yourself again
Refuse to listen, refuse to see
You don’t want to know, don’t what to know, don’t want to know, when it comes to me
In the dead of night, in the heat of day
When it comes to you, you just turn away
When it comes to you

When it comes to you, I stay up all night
Pretending I am her, pretending I know what it’s like
To be devoured, feel your hungry thoughts that run
All over me like I was sustenance when the harvest fails and the winter comes
When the wind blows and the bough breaks
When it comes to you I am dangerously wide awake
When it come to you
Track Name: Run at the Moon
Watched water rolling over the dam
Gone, gone, gone
Burned bridges downstream both of us
Wrong, wrong, wrong
Leaves drifting on a current
Pulled along, pulled apart
Direction predetermined
Still we don’t know where we are

Chorus:
We stared into the sun too long
Straight up, high noon
Now we’re bright-blinded, stumbling
Taking a run at the moon

Soles worn thin on our shoes
Broken road
Don’t know which way to turn
Still we go
Can’t remember where we started
There’s no telling where it ends
Nothing round here looks familiar
Even though it’s where we’ve been

Chorus

Those strings that tied us down have all
Come undone
We’re lucky or we’re lost
Never sure which one
We’re traveling in circles
Still there’s no going back again
We finally found our way to nowhere
Just as the dark comes slipping in

Chorus
Track Name: You Were on My Mind
I dreamed last night that I’d forgotten you
In some other place where I did not think of you
I walked beside a river, between frozen trees
I didn’t see you outside, I didn’t feel you inside me

Chorus:
I woke up this morning
You were on my mind
I woke up this morning
You were on my mind

I dreamed last night that I was never close to you
I had passed you by, never felt the pull of you
Into some other life where you could not find your way to me
And from that moment on you never once occurred to me

Chorus

I dreamed last night that I was finally through with you
I was satisfied, finally got my fill of you
And drunkenly I stumbled into the street alone
The night was old and broken and I finally felt like going home

Chorus
Track Name: Long Way Home
It’s way past midnight, I’m a little off track
I’m a little bit lost, I’m trying to get back
All turned around, no direction is clear
Where did I go wrong, how did I end up here

Chorus:
You’d better run when you see me coming
I got the bad luck won’t leave me alone
I got the needle, just hit empty
And it’s still a long way home

The young ones used to watch me trying to figure out how
I did the magic, you wouldn’t know to look at me now
I’m down at the bottom of my bag of tricks
Nothing left but nicotine-stained Statocaster licks

Chorus

Bridge
There was nothing but good luck in the early days
Time passed, things changed, there was hell to pay
But, nothing else mattered, no worry, no doubt
No money, no chance, no easy way out

Now my mind’s gone slack, but I’m still wound tight
I’m like a small-town bar on a Saturday night
You’d better take a good look, hear what I say
Turn around now, don’t end up this way

Chorus
Track Name: Rudy's
Lying on his car in the parking lot of Rudy’s
The heat from the kitchen started messing with his head
The dinner crowd’s not in yet, it’s still so very early
As he stares off at a speck there in the sky

Chorus:
(He, She, You) want(s) to fly
Destination unimportant
Spread his wings like an angel and fly
Cause, we all got wings
That’s what (the boy/Ronda) tells (me/her)
We all got wings

The sky is getting dark above the parking lot of Rudy’s
The rain he’s lying under’s falling steady on his face
Above the clouds a jet trails off, his vision’s getting blurry
As he rubs the drops of rain from his eyes

Chorus

(Bridge)
Ronda’s waiting tables moving way too fast notice
Until every dish is dirty then she hits the backdoor screen
Hollering his name, yelling get yourself back in here
But it’s dark out and that boy’s nowhere to be seen

Ronda takes the trash out to the parking lot of Rudy’s
Two days of double shifts started messing with her feet
It’s so very late, she thinks of him, she worries
Then she shuffles off like someone left behind

Chorus

Now I’m standing in what used to be the parking lot of Rudy’s
Thirty years have swept that diner and Ronda clean away
But on the ruined air that rushes past me in a hurry
Ronda left me this message, Some things you can’t hold back even if you try, she says

Chorus
Track Name: Earleton
There’s snow blowing over the border of Iowa
Two inches already in Osceola
I’m going back to Earleton some of these days
Going back to Earleton some of these days
Warm in the winter, scrub pine trees
Cypress swamps, short shirt-sleeves
Going back to Earleton some of these days
I’m going back to Earleton some of these days

Somebody I’ve loved since I remember
Waits for me there however far I wander
I’m going back to Earleton some of these days
Going back to Earleton some of these days
Somebody I know won’t forget me
When the cold wind stings me here on the prairie
Going back to Earleton some of these days
I’m going back to Earleton some of these days

Someday I’m gonna leave this cold behind me
You can look down South if you want to try and find me
I’m going back to Earleton some of these days
Going back to Earleton some of these days
Where the sun shines hot and it never freezes
Let my skin go dark, feel the ocean breezes
Going back to Earleton some of these days
I’m going back to Earleton some of these days
Track Name: Memphis
Have you ever been standing in the pouring rain
Have you ever been to Memphis when nobody knows your name
Have you ever been invisible, ever been overlooked
Not on anybody’s mind, not in anybody’s book
Have you ever wished you could just crawl back to from where you came
Have you ever been to Memphis when nobody knows your name

My friend, Bill, told me, If you come
I’ll introduce you all around, you’re gonna have so much fun
And everybody gonna love you for your talent and you wit
And for your cleverness, Bill was sure of it
When nobody loved me I made sure Bill was sorry as I was that I came
Have you ever been to Memphis when nobody knows your name

(Bridge)
My friend, Bill, he said, Think hard before you choose
To have everybody interested in every little thing you do

I left Memphis and went back to my hometown
Though I’d been away for so long, when I walked around
Everybody knew me, and everyone I met
Reminded me of something I’d left there to forget
The truth barreled in and hit me hard when it came
I’d rather be in Memphis where nobody knows my name

Have you ever been stranded in the pouring rain
Have you ever been to Memphis when nobody knows your name
Did you ever kick your shoes off, go splashing down the street
With no need to be presentable, no need to be discreet
Have you ever tasted freedom and did you find it far too sweet to trade for fame
Have you ever been to Memphis when nobody knows your name
Track Name: Dull Ache
Six hours ago you said good-bye at the airport
Now there’s nobody waiting when she steps off the plane
She picks up her bag, gets a bus at the corner
Rides another three hours through the cold autumn rain

Chorus
Some things don’t change, some things don’t ever end
You say you’re through, then you go back again
You give up all the ground that you’ve won
For this dull ache that you can count on

She’s gone to the one who speaks in tongues like the angels
Who’ll make her believe in the mysterious divine
Who’ll turn out to be another sleight-of-hand shyster
She falls for the same tricks every time

Chorus

She never expects it, but it’s what always happens
Kindness turns cruel, devotion turns mean
And soon she will call you, all damaged and broken
With excuses for why things were not as they seemed

Chorus

You’re not the first of her fast friends drunk on her misery
Not the last one left shaking, strung out on her pain
You’re not the only one swearing when she calls you won’t answer
You’re just one more backslider caught out in the rain

Chorus
Track Name: Hard Wheels
You wanted a lover who smelled like October
Who tasted like pines that grow beside the French Broad River
Who moved like the trains on the Sterling Street tracks
Rolling slow before midnight, then faster, clickety-clack, clickety-clack
You with your slow train ways, me with my dark town days
Little Boy Blue come blow your horn, the butcher’s on the moon, the cows have stolen all the corn
The cat’s in the cradle, the dogs are on the run
I may kiss you before I leave, then again I might just travel on

(Chorus)
Hard wheels on steel rails shook the floor where you were living
Rattled the windows and the cups in the kitchen
Signaled a warning so loud you couldn’t miss it
Better watch out, watch out, but you wouldn’t listen

Railroad trestle, deserted back road
She’d asked for a ride, she was only fourteen years old
And the man in the van made sure she never can tell
Pushed into the backseat, pushed straight into hell
Just a girl from New Jersey with Rockaway eyes
Now she’s about to meet God with this Devil by her side
So she dreams she’s a bird or some fast flying train
Rolling clean into last night, back home safe again

(Chorus)

Her daddy will miss her, her mama will cry
Brother keeps silent, they all want this bastard to fry
But, he’s no different from them, from you or from me
The mystery of longing is that we all wanna be
Touching someone in some way that will last
For some it is tender, for others it is barbed wire and broken glass
And you won’t know beforehand, no you never can tell
If it’s good luck or peril, goodnight or fare thee well

(Chorus)
Track Name: Last Train to Memphis
I’m on the last train to Memphis, I’m feeling old and worn
It’s the sixteenth day of August, it’s the day the king died, it’s the day that you were born
Jesse’s right beside me as the whistle starts blowing
Telling me to step off, telling you to keep going

They say that Jesse did it all for the love of his twin
Set his own life aside so the king could step in
The money-changers cheered, the old folks were alarmed
When they heard the news, a king is born

A king was born on the outskirts of town
To the Pharisees he’s nothing but a hip-shaking clown
But, when the evening falls and the house lights dim
Every song we sing is a memory of him

Last time I saw you on the road you were looking tired and drawn
You said you might slow down as you gunned it to move on
Me and Jesse wished you well as you were headed off to some
Seedy joint you were playing out on Highway 61

The king stirred it up and the preachers spoke of sin
Crowds going wild, the Colonel cashing in
The blues men cursed and the jazz cats cried
But, there wasn’t one among them could have turned this tide

A king was born, wrong side of the tracks
The critics called him just a white boy gone black
But when the curtain falls and the spotlights dim
We don’t remember their names, but we can’t forget him

Me and Jesse caught your show out on Beale Street last night
Everybody was dancing, you were cooking all right
Off in a corner me and Jess raised our glasses high
To the ones who never made it, to the ones left behind

It came as no surprise when the king rolled on
When the last trained pulled away he was already long gone
Me and Jesse slipped away before the whistle blew
We couldn’t bear to hear that lonesome sound we both already knew

A king born below the Mason-Dixon line
Some say he was a profit way ahead of his time
But, when the crowd went home and there was no one else
He never shook the feeling he’d lost part of himself

I’m on the last train to Memphis, I’m feeling old and worn
It’s the sixteenth day of August
It’s the day the king died
It’s the day you were born