long time gone

from by sandy mackay

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about

time travel with a banjo- they usually send you back... with two banjos

'long time gone' takes place where I lived as a boy there was (and still is!) a long lane, embroidered on either side by overhanging trees, apple, black cherry, ash elm and hawthorn. and buckthorn, but we're working on that now, right dad?

that lane is where the old man meets the boy.

an old alcoholic travels back through time and is recognized by his 14-year old self. why?
'they' say that someone who begins drinking at age 14, or before maturity, often stalls emotionally at that age, that you will mature physically, can hold a job, have a family or whatever adult-y things you want to do, but that one's emotional growth gets stalled. go figure.

so i thought, what if that 14 year old kid, who hadn't yet begun to drink ran into his older self- the 45 year old alcoholic? what would the kid say? the kid would say "hey, i want to grow up emotionally stable! give me back my future stability!"

what would the drunk say? 'here, have a drink!'

i know what i answered when i was 14
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jeez, i don't know if this really explains anything. the loons are calling outside my window tonite. maybe they're telling me something. the baby has started stirring and crying, maybe i should change my tack altogether here.

thanks to dann downes for the loan of his excellent banjo, and jim clark for the loan of his excellent banjo and james gordon for the loan of his excellent banjo too!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
a few weeks later, this story holds up. i should add the joke about time travel with a banjo to my humourous stage repartee.

plus, the website statiticss page says that you like long time gone as one of the favourite songs on this album- it's getting the most replays! this bandcamp website is pretty cool to play with and easy to set up. thanks bandcamp.

lyrics

Long Time Gone © Sandy Mackay

I had a dream the other night; chasing down the wind
I thought I heard my younger self say
"Yonder comes my twin!
He's old and fat and bald and cruel, but it was plain to see
His hair was red his eye was blue- he looked a lot like me.

He’d lived his life for the buzz in his head,
His wife had fled, his liver was lead,
That’s when he came back to me

Long time long time gone
you been a long time gone,
Long time long time gone
you been a long time gone

I caught his eye in the looking glass and asked him to come back in
he fumbled for a thin cigarette and grasped a glass of gin
“I been drinking hard these 30 years , i've nothing left to give you John”
I said “You have the vig I need and you been a long time gone”

Cyan between mad sea and sky
His mouth was dry and the river was rye
That’s when he came back to me

Long time long time gone
you been a long time gone,
Long time long time gone
you been a long time gone

(insert fiddle tune: Over the Waterfall part b)

He took his last bottle from his overcoat, he set it on the table
My life was there inside the glass, my face was on the label
He said "your spirit’s in the whiskey, drink it down you’ll see"
I fetched out my clawhammer and set my spirit free

Then eye to I to I to eye
To I to eye to I to eye
Then he came back to me

Long time long time gone
you been a long time gone,
Long time long time gone
you been a long time gone

(a capella, repeat ad nauseaum etc)

credits

from call of the wheel, released September 15, 2012
produced by sandy mackay and tim davidson at ripple effect music in saint john new brunswick canada

percussion: john morrison
harmonica and vox: steve sellors
vox: jude vadala
acoustic bass, mandolin, banjo, vox: sandy mackay

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about

sandy mackay St John, New Brunswick

sandy
sometimes lives on a little island in a big river in New Brunswick.
Plays strings keyboards and bagpipes.
We're writing new songs these days, it's fall coming into winter and enjoyable snow!
Looks forward to seeing you soon, somewhere... send
messages to easandymackay@gmail.com
... more

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