not a part of anything

by Ronan Conroy

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1.
03:12
2.
03:34
3.
03:38
4.
5.
6.
7.
03:36
8.
9.
03:27
10.
02:41
11.
06:35
12.
13.

about

This album is dedicated to Charles Nieland. Producer, engineer, multi-instrumentalist, arranger, song doctor. You’re pretty-much The Band on most of my work these days. Thanks for all of this, and thanks first and foremost for your friendship. Nights at the studio are like hanging out in some amazing apartment where great things happen.
Thanks to the artists who appeared on the album with me - Charles Nieland, Justin Wierbonski, Echoscape and Chealsea Conroy.
Thanks to Fred Kevorkian for your always supreme quality mastering.
Thanks to Shannon Brown for putting the album cover together.
Thanks to TL Reid for the inspiring and amazing photos: those images are perfect for these songs.
Thanks to the Bushwick Book Club for inspiring me to write “Fire Escape” while reading Betty Smith’s “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.”

credits

released March 10, 2016

Produced and engineered by Charles Nieland at Capture Sound Studios, Brooklyn, New York between March 2013 and April 2015
Mastered by Fred Kevorkian at Avatar Studios, Manhattan, New York between August and September 2015
Album cover designed by Shannon Brown

Music and lyrics by Ronan Conroy (except #8 - music by Ronan Conroy and Bryan Pocius)
Vocals by Ronan Conroy
Backing vocals on #13 by Ronan Conroy and Charles Nieland
Guitars by Ronan Conroy
Bass guitar on #1, #2 and #13 by Echoscape
Bass guitar on #3, #4, #5, #6, #7, #8, #9, #10 and #11 by Charles Nieland
Synths on #3, #11 and #12 by Charles Nieland
Piano on #5 by Charles Nieland
Drums on #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6, #7, #10, #11, #12 and #13 by Justin Wierbonski
Drums on #8 and #9 by Chealsea Conroy

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Track Name: Apart
Take a bow!
Everybody knows you’re right!
Show them how!
Nothing proved without a fight
Win somehow!
Technically you have the right
Anyhow: he’s higher than a fucking kite!

It’s a matter of the heart!
It’s a matter of the heart!

Take a bow!
What a great performance, now
You arrive and leave without a warning
In the sun - we lay in the water
You asked me what was on my mind and in my heart

It’s a matter of the heart!
It’s a matter of the HEART!
It’s a matter of the heart!
It doesn’t matter if we fall apart!

Falling down
Falling from a heavy height
Suffer now!
Standing in the blinding light
Heave the plow!
Drag the blade with all your might!
Heed the vow!
Winding sheet is winding tight

It’s a matter of the heart!
It’s a matter of the HEART!
It’s a matter of the heart!
It doesn’t matter if we fall apart!
APART!
Track Name: Terms
Come on little darling, we’ve been living too long in the shadows
What happens next - nobody knows
Let’s wear a smile for a while, wipe the tears from your eyes and slow down
Feel the air in your lungs, feel the blood in your veins
Slow down, slow down

Come on little darling, all the baggage that we’re holding - let’s let go
Holding on won’t do nobody no good
Catalogue and file and the crimes and the lies - we made mistakes
It doesn’t last, does’t matter, doesn’t change me and you

Lay, lay your weapons down
Lay, lay your burden down
Lay, lay your weapons down
Lay, lay your burden down

Come on little darling, we’ve been looking too long out the window
Struggling inside while the wide world passes by
Let’s take the throne, wear the crown, hang around for a while: we’ve earned it.
I think I’m coming to terms

Lay, lay your weapons down
Lay, lay your burden down
Lay, lay your weapons down
Lay, lay your burden down
Track Name: Fire Escape
Through the bars across the window
Through the bars of the fire escape
Bleak tall towers stop the sunlight from coming in
Your sad face in the shadows

Madness pass in proximity on the street
Trash bums sleep ragged in wine-drunk cavities
Pan down endless through apartment block balconies
Whores boardwalk under the window down on the street

Stars dimmed black - the gaudy reach of a million lights
Washed ashore - convulsing under streetlights
I was garbage strewn on a filthy shoreline
I could not breathe - I wanted to escape

Oh! There was nothing before that love!
And it filled me up where I had never been touched before
My father’s hand ringing across my face:
In the cold of home - love was forbidden

Now our love was not the love that it was before
But oh my love, was it ever?
Your sad face in the shadows of that place
And you just wanted to escape
Track Name: Driving South
I’m driving south all away from your lies
I want out but I’m running out of time
You couldn’t keep all of your promises if you tried
Work it out or we can say goodbye

Whose opinion are you wearing now?
Paralyzed by your fear of ghosts
You and I: are we circling the drain?
Or are we orbiting the stars?

Disappointed!

Sweet siren, Queen of Nothing
Regent of the Incomplete
What you get is what you earn!
Dance in fire!
All my years are burned.

Disappointed!

I’m driving south all away from your lies
I want out but I’m running out of time
You couldn’t keep all of your promises if you tried
Work it out or we can say goodbye
Sweet siren, Queen of Nothing
Regent of the Incomplete
Sweet siren, Super Nova!
Sweet siren, it’s all over.
Track Name: Thursday's Song
Somewhere all this is resolved
Somewhere all these paths have crossed
I don’t know but I trust
I trust

Somewhere all these questions have been answered
Somewhere all this tension has been lost

Stay right here within these soft walls
Stay right here where all is absolved
All is ok
Ok
Oh!

The sun is going down upon the buildings and the river
I’m watching in the reflection for her image
Is she coming?
Track Name: You Little So-and-So
Your wife knows it
The landlord and landlady know it
Their noisy little kids know it
The guy at the corner store knows it

The girl from the wine bar knows it
The girl on the 10th floor knows it
Your brothers they all know it
Your mother, though she doesn’t show it

Oh! You little so-and-so
Oh! You little so-and-so

Your friends they all know it
Everybody in the band knows it
The innocent bystander knows it
Everybody in the taxi line knows it

The people at the bars you’ve been to
The airport security screener
The drunk East-European girl
The whole wide fucking world!

Oh! You little so-and-so
Oh! You little so-and-so
Oh! You little so-and-so
Oh! You little so-and-so

They’ve all seen you going at it
Acting like a lunatic
Speaking in tongues
And coughing up your antics

The orange-thrower in Amsterdam
Is probably a very nice man
But understandably he could not stand you
Acting like a so-and-so

Oh! You little so-and-so
Oh! You little so-and-so
Oh! You little so-and-so
Oh! You little so-and-so

The neighbors on the street know it
The pole-dancers at 13th Street know it
The telephone solicitor knows it
The bouncers at the door know it

Your colleagues on the job know it
The comments of a blog show it
Your buddies who aren’t buddies show it
They hide it well - they barely show it

Oh! You little so-and-so
Oh! You little so-and-so
Oh! You little so-and-so
Oh! You little so-and-so
Track Name: The Promise
What happened?
Where has it gone?
You had the answers when you were young
You would not do what they had done

The years pass you by
Try not to lose it!
The years take a toll on you
Don’t let the fears take hold of you!
The cold in you can die if you can breathe

I don’t know how to carry on
Don’t know if I can can do it alone
Took things so far - now you’re gone

She said something she should not have said
You killed something that should not be dead
Remember!
Electric fire!

The years pass you by
Try not to lose it!
The years they take a toll on you
Don’t let the fears take hold of you!
The cold in you can die if you can breathe
Track Name: CapitulationAdvance
Polite demeanor to the dilettante fool
Give the baby what it wants!
Give the animals the shirt off your back!
CapitulationAdvance

Smile your way through another dead day
CapitulationAdvance
Beaten bodily - it’s a daily occurrence
Oh no - you don’t stand a chance!

Yeh!

They’ve taken every fucking penny away
Disintegration is life
Ripe lies and newborn ripe with the flies
Cut your tongue out - you can watch what you say
You can watch what you say!
Track Name: Song #1
Come ride the spinning wheel!
Come ride the spinning top!
Come see the sea of faces!
Just try to swim on top!

Come see the twisted faces!
Just try to stay on top!
Scream! Wish it wasn’t real!
But you know it’ll never stop

I ain’t tellin’ no-one
I don’t trust a soul
Words don’t come out shaped right
Choke them down! Keep hold!

So sick of being lied to
Why do I even care?
Just trying to resurrect me
Just trying to get out of here

Dread fills me up each morning
As I’m crossing the parking lot
Another day that they have taken
Another day that I am not

I ain’t tellin’ no-one
I don’t trust a soul
Words don’t come out shaped right
Choke them down! Keep hold!

Choke them down! Keep hold!

Come ride the spinning wheel!
Come ride the spinning top!
Two dozen internal dialogues
Cataloguing “Is” “Is not”

So sick of being lied to
Why do I even care?
I’m never going to get out of here
I’m never going to get out of here

I ain’t tellin’ no-one
I don’t trust a soul
Words don’t come out shaped right
Choke them down! Keep hold!
Track Name: Step by Step
Books on myself
Stare at myself
Books on my shelf
Stare at my shelf

Go to the phone!
Leave me alone!
Answer the phone!
Do it alone!

Step by step
Watch your step
Take a step
Take it back

Stare at the wall
Take it all
Books on the wall
Answer the call!
Track Name: Stop Talking
You know my game - you think you got my number, don’t you?
You heard my name - makes me just a number like you
I tell my shame - you tell me all the rules to follow
Coz it’s a game, and you’ve been playing longer than me
I can’t pull rank - there’s no hierarchy

You heard some things about me I don’t really want you to know
But if I’m shameful - you tell me I just need to let go
That’s real convenient, coz we’re not talking ‘bout you
and the things you’ve done that make you ashamed just like me
You still got your secrecy

Stop talking to me through your preaching mouth!
It’s so simple, is it?
You got it figured out
Stop talking!
You run your preaching mouth
What a wisdom is it that rips the spirit out?

You heard the news, so now you can rush in with your truth
You got your wisdom - just can’t wait to preach it to me
I’ve made mistakes, so who am I to question advice?
No matter what I get done - you think I can’t tell wrong from right
You’re going to show me the light

Stop talking to me through your preaching mouth!
So simple, is it?
You got it figured out
Stop talking!
You run your preaching mouth
What a wisdom is it that rips the spirit out, that rips the spirit out?
Track Name: Memory Afterbirth
Beyond the point of no return
Beyond the point of anger
There is nothing left to burn
I don’t have your answer

Voices taken by the wind
Steals your laughter
Blood runs into the mud
Time slipping faster

Faces in darkness
Faces in light
Facts in the darkness
Facts brought to light

Dry, the leaves crack in your hands
Fall to the winter earth
These were answers that you learned
Memory afterbirth

Faces in darkness
Faces in light
Facts in the darkness
Facts brought to light
Track Name: Not a Part of Anything
Not a part of anything
Not a part of you
Fall apart like everything does and always will do
Baby Blue it’s true
Baby Blue it’s true
Baby Blue it’s true
Baby Blue it’s true
It’s true

Not a part of anything
Not a part of you
Fall apart like everything does and always will do

Maybe when you’re older you will understand
All that’s on your shoulders will make the boy a man

Leave here without anything
Leave here without you
Leave here without all the things we tried so hard to do
Baby Blue it’s true
Baby Blue it’s true
Baby Blue it’s true
Baby Blue it’s true

As your heart grows colder you will make a stand
As you fail to hold her you’ll see what’s in your hands …