Suit of Nettles

by trailer star

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1.
Firework Factory Davey lives in a cheap hotel He carries a suitcase full of bibles to sell He spends every Sunday out by a cross Shouting "sinners - your souls are lost" And every night he dreams of flames And the Devil lighting up his way Down a burning street To the firework factory Davey’s got a family way out west He ain’t seen them since the day he left He’s spent all his money on sex and sin Doesn’t think about them don’t think he ever did All he can see is those flames And the Devil lighting his way Down a burning street, down a burning street To the firework factory Deep in Davey’s suitcase under the cross You’ll always find a bottle of scotch Deep in Davey’s mind you’ll find he’s lost He ain’t never believed in God He’s as empty as that hotel room He’s as empty as the grave he’ll be in soon All he dreams of at night is the flames And the Devil lighting up the way Down a burning street, down a burning street To the firework factory
2.
Scarecrow Grave Lay me down in a scarecrow’s grave Dig out a cross in a shallow way In the middle of a barren field On the brow of a hill where plovers wheel Lay me down in a scarecrow’s grave With a pair of boots made out of crates Push me down with the sticks and stones And nail me down through my broken bones ‘Cos if I ever rise from that scarecrow’s grave With a heart of straw that’s burning away I’ll never cease to roam these dark hills Looking for a girl with golden shoes Yes bury me down in a scarecrow’s grave Hold me down so I never rise again See that there are no crosses on that hill So all those good folk can fear no ill Just bury me down in a scarecrow’s grave With my heart of straw and my pauper’s name And I will never trouble you again my dear I’ll be the green corn again in another year.
3.
I Believe 02:56
I Believe Blue moon rising above a deadwood tree Your face in the water staring back at me Barrels creaking after the storm The river is high but it sure feels warm Maybe baby now I, I can believe Silver train flickering through the woods A shooting star falling on my roof An owl screetching up at the moon As I watch you undress here in my room Maybe baby now I, I can believe Firelight flickers in your eyes As somewhere in the dark a dog barks at the night I draw the curtains I dry your hair As the wind howls and the moon disappears Maybe baby now I, I can believe I believe
4.
Suit of Nettles He was working at the factory On a holiday weekend When he saw the full moon shining Through a window above his head He worked out all the hours He’d wasted in his life They weren’t far short of all the hours Of his life Now he wears a suit of nettles And he carries a cheap guitar He roams from town to town He roams from bar to bar Suit of Nettles, suit of nettles. His wife could never trace him His kids call another man dad There’s a fading photo in a police station But no-one wants him back Now he spends his nights under the moon and stars He spends his days playing that old guitar One day he met a promoter Who bought him a suit of nettles And put him on a stage of lights He played for twenty minutes Got stage fright, walked off into the night Now he wears a suit of nettles And he plays a cheap guitar He roams from town to town He roams from bar to bar Suit of Nettles, suit of nettles.
5.
Broke Down 03:23
Broke Down GOT A BROKE DOWN CAR IN A BROKE DOWN PLACE IT’S A BROKE DOWN SHED IN A BROKE DOWN STATE GOT A BROKE DOWN HOUSE ON A BROKE DOWN STREET GOT A BROKE DOWN TV THAT JUST DON’T WORK FOR ME GOT A BROKE DOWN LIFE FULL OF BROKE DOWN DREAMS GOT A BROKE DOWN TREE SURROUNDED BY BROKE DOWN LEAVES THERE’S A BROKE DOWN TRAIN COMIN’ DOWN A BROKE DOWN TRACK COMIN’ TO TAKE MY BROKE DOWN BABY BACK THERE’S A BROKE DOWN DOOR, A BROKE DOWN KEY IN MY HAND I’M THROWING IT AWAY SO THAT I CAN BREAK FREE OF THIS BROKE DOWN WORLD
6.
Man with no name You kick at the tyre of the tractor That hasn’t moved since the snow last came down You pull at the chainlink fence blow dandelions over the old grey sow And wonder whose hand on your arm could lead you away from here now Well it’s the middle of summer but clouds cover up the sun, you feel cold You run for shelter, find your father with a halter, staring at the ground Oh why can’t I tell you , oh why can’t I say I feel like a man with no name In a dark pantry a dog panting, tired from running under the sun And on the kitchen table a dripping pheasant broken by the farmer’s gun And you sit in your armchair reading news of a war that has hardly begun Whilst all of the berries we picked last summer turned blood red in the cup And you thought you could break down all the fences they put around you And you told me to take a deep breath and set my own pace Oh why can’t I tell you , oh why can’t I say I feel like a man with no name Unmarked grave, an unmarked grave Well your stepdad he fell in that kitchen and the dog sat there and waited all day And the silent river rolled on and the clouds blew over the hills anyway So father and son two years later we stand in a graveyard in the rain And if I could lead you to the answer I would , you know I would say I feel like a man with no name Man with no name in an unmarked grave
7.
Car nobody loved It's covered in nettles, it's full of weeds Been there since 1963 A farmer towed it out here behind a truck Dumped it here in the weeds and mud It's the car nobody loves He'd been to the bank and bought a new car That shone as bright as a tinsel star So he stripped down the engine, threw away the key Left it here to rust on the edge of a stream Now the seats are a nest for the birds The engine's a home for beetles and worms But you can still see by the dash and the chrome That this old car was once proudly owned So that is why on every Christmas Eve You'll see that old farmer out here holding a beer As he remembers the day he met his first wife As that old car stalled under the Christmas lights The car nobody loves...
8.
Whiskey Road 03:49
WHISKY ROAD DONALD CAMERON DROVE HIS FORD DOWN TO THE WATERLINE IN THE LONG HOT SUMMER OF 1949 HE WATCHED THE MUDDY WATER AS IT WENT RUSHING BY AS HE LIT A CIGARETTE AND STARED INTO THE NIGHT IT'S A MIGHTY LONG WAY FROM THE SIDE OF THE CLYDE TO THE BANKS OF THE OHIO IT'S A MIGHTY LONG WAY FROM THE GLASGOW DOCKS TO THE HOLLYWOOD BOWL WHEN YOU'RE HEADED DOWN WHISKEY ROAD HE SAILED ON A CARGO SHIP YEAR HE WAS DEMOBBED SAILED FROM GLASGOW INTO A WORLD OF ICE AND FOG JUMPED SHIP IN CHICAGO THEN HEADED OUT WEST NEVER KNEW WHICH ROAD HE COULD TAKE FOR THE BEST HE GOT A SALESMAN'S JOB IN A SMALL MIDWEST TOWN SELLING REFRIGERATORS, NO MONEY DOWN EVERY SATURDAY NIGHT HE'D BE IN A BAR DRINKING WHISKEY 'TIL HE STAGGERED TO HIS CAR THEN ONE DAY HE THOUGHT HE SAW THE HIGHLANDS SHINING THROUGH THE MIST AND ALL THE CRANES OF GLASGOW TOWERING OVER HIM... NBXT MORNING THEY FOUND HIS CAR IN THE MUD UNDERNEATH THE ARKANSAW AND MEMPHIS BRIDGE. AS HE'D COME TO THE END OF A WHISKEY ROAD IT'S A MIGHTY LONG WAY FROM THE SIDE OF THE CLYDE TO THE BANKS OF THE OHIO IT'S A MIGHTY LONG WAY FROM THE GLASGOW DOCKS TO THE HOLLYWOOD BOWL WHEN YOU'RE HEADED DOWN A WHISKEY ROAD
9.
Henry Night 02:33
HENRY NIGHT ON COOMBE RISE IN THE PALE MOONLIGHT THE TWISTING BODY OF HENRY NIGHT AND ROUND HIM IN THE DAWN RAVENS FLY PECK AT THE FROST ON HIS ICE-COVERED EYES THEY BROUGHT HIM ON A CART IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT FROM THE BIG HOUSE WHERE THE FIRES SHONE BRIGHT THEY HAULED HIS BODY UP INTO THE SKY LEFT HIM HANGING IN THE PALE MOONLIGHT THE SHERIFF FOUND HIM GUILTY OF STEALING A GUN WHEN EVERYBODY KNEW HE'D ONLY STOLEN HER LOVE BUT THERE WAS NO DEFENCE AGAINST THE LANDLORD'S SPITE WHEN THE LOCAL ASSIZES TRIED HENRY NIGHT HIS LAST RESTING PLACE A GALLOWS POLE A PERCH FOR THE RAVEN AND THE CROW AND WHEN THE BIG HOUSE IS ABLAZE WITH LIGHTS THEY SAY SHE SITS INSIDE AND CRIES AND CRIES CRIES FOR POOR HENRY NIGHT
10.
Crazy Black Cars I’m jumping into an endless sky A sky full of stars and shiny planes A sky so blue it turns the houses to grey Yeah I’m still falling since that day I would play in the back seat having fun That car my grandad said could be anyones Crazy Black Car, Crazy Black Car Now every car is noted down Every road is satellite found There is no freedom in this country any more Somebody tracking you from door to door The days of freedom long gone There’s no more sitting on the back seat having fun Crazy Black Car, Crazy Black Car I saw my generation shake their heads At the new kids with their satellite aids But where can those kids drive any more Tracked on the screen from screen to door to door There’s nowhere to have fun any more Crazy Black Car, Crazy Black Car Let them fall apart…. Crazy Black Car Crazy Black Car
11.
B.J's Mobile Home Billy Johnson’s house has three bald tyres A dodgy tax disc, a licence that’s expired Rusted lamps and blackened chrome But that heap of scrap’s what he calls home It don’t matter which way you go One of these days you’ll pass Him on the road B.J.’s mobile home. Rain comes through the sills, the engine’s shot But those torn curtains hide all he’s got The back seat’s home to his old mangy dog The windscreen’s plastered with bird’s muck But it don’t matter which way you go One day you’ll pass B.J. on the road B.J.’s mobile home. He’s been to every place anybody’s been He’s seen more sights than most people ever see He’s lived twenty lives in the time most people live one He’s still going whilst you’re stuck in a rut So remember one day when you pass B.J.’s mobile home just say hello….
12.
Frozen Lawn 04:10
Frozen lawn I came back to your town As the snowplough was headed out And the cruel north wind Was blowing around your house I came back to your gate In that old battered crate And I walked up to your door Just like I did before And your light shone on the frozen lawn And your light shone on the frozen lawn I’d been away a year and a day Didn’t seem like I’d been away at all Cos’ here I am again knocking your front door And watching the light go on in the hall And your light shines on the frozen lawn And your light shines on the frozen lawn Now I’ve been back two years or more No more sending cheques through your door Your sister said I never treated you right But I did what I thought was right To keep that light shining bright Across this frozen lawn Frozen lawn, frozen lawn…

about

Available as Cassette Tape at £5.00 and digital download included.

Created to accompany an exhibition at Lincoln Collection in 2008. Each track has its own painting. To see individual paintings click on track names above.

The story of the songs…

Some of these songs were written in 1995 whilst I was living in Edinburgh and were typed out on an old typewriter…

At the time I had no means of recording songs so this a bit of archival retrieval…

I distinctly remember playing Whiskey Road at a Edinburgh Songwriters Competition and being pissed off that they couldn’t see I was the new Steve Earle! …..It took me over ten years to be in a position to record them properly…

They were re-recorded in 2007 on to an 8-track TOA professional cassette recorder then transferred to minidisc and then PC. Then tidied up (mostly) in Audacity before converting to MP3.

Other songs were more recent e.g. Scarecrow Grave, Broke Down and Firework Factory.

Mostly written 2003-4 and recorded direct to TOA.

Download obtainable by purchasing a cassette tape version and download code at £5. To purchase contact the artist.

The download package includes a bonus pdf of the Story of Trailer Star called 'Moon Over the Barns' in pdf format.

credits

released July 1, 2008

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all rights reserved

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trailer star Nottingham, UK

It’s hard going at times but glory can come from misery. The fragility and the feeling of being on the edge of toppling over is balanced by the skeletal beauty of the songs.
Paul Kerr - Blabber n' Smoke

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