To Keep You In My Life

Verse 1
A girl like you is hard to find
Appealing to my eyes & mind
You make want to be a better man
So my honey, I'll do what I can

Chorus
To keep you in my life
I’ll work harder than a bodybuilder in a gym
If you need the kind of guy
Who’ll treat you like a princess then I’ll be him
I’ll bring you coffee in bed
I’ll make your breakfast & cater to every whim
I’ll rub your feet and head
I’ll brush your knotted hair, I’ll go out on a limb

Verse 2
A girl like you is hard to keep
You’re off & running when I’m asleep
You make me want to do almost anything
You make me want to buy you a ring

Chorus
To keep you in my life
I’ll work harder than a bodybuilder in a gym
If you need the kind of guy
Who’ll treat you like a princess then I’ll be him
I’ll bring you coffee in bed
I’ll make your breakfast & cater to every whim
I’ll rub your feet and head
I’ll brush your knotted hair, I’ll go out on a limb

Bridge
I’m enamored by your lips
I’m obsessed with all that you are
I’m like the paparazzi
To you, the major motion picture star
I’ll be the guy who you can take home to Dad
I’ll be the Prince you always wished you had

Solos

Chorus
To keep you in my life
I’ll work harder than a bodybuilder in a gym
If you need the kind of guy
Who’ll treat you like a princess then I’ll be him
I’ll bring you coffee in bed
I’ll make your breakfast & cater to every whim
I’ll rub your feet and head
I’ll brush your knotted hair, I’ll go out on a limb

Tag
To keep you in my life
To keep you in my life
To have you be my wife
So you’ll stay in my life

January 16, 2022

Struggling State

When you’re struggling
Do you change course
Or are you stubborn
Like an old and bitter horse

Who’s been out in the barn
For some 10 years or more
When you’re struggling
Do you wonder what it’s all for?

When you’re struggling
Do you feel that pain
Or do you feel pleasure
Like you’re back home again

As a child with your Grandma
At the old department store
When you’re struggling
Do you curl up on the floor?

Cause when I’m struggling
It’s hard to figure things out
It’s hard to come to terms
With what it’s all about

When I’m struggling
I’m filled with fear and doubt
Overwhelmed like worms
Trapped in a water spout

And I’m falling
And I’m falling
I’m falling
I just keep falling
I’m falling
And I can’t seem
To stand up straight
When I’m in a
Struggling state.

December 8, 2021

Santa Cruz Young

Dedicated to my brothers, Russell Gray & Jeff Gray

Just to ride down that trail again
To see the whole Monterey Bay
And to feel that strong breeze
Against my golden brown face
Just to walk in that neighborhood
To Westlake with my schoolmates
And not have too worry about
What was on our dinner plates

When we were Santa Cruz young
We didn’t think too much about
Things our parents were doing
Like who they were countersuing
Or who had extra special clout
We only cared about each other
Fitting in and good sportsmanship
Riding our bikes around UCSC
We were wild and oh so crazy
As we’d go to the beach for a dip

I remember playing capture the flag
I remember how it all was and felt
And I remember my first crushes
How I thought my heart would melt
I remember my first childhood kiss
With a girl from down the block
And how my Daddy worked so hard
While Mom stayed in and was his rock

Just to be in my old room again
Just to listen to that old record play
And to be around my older brothers
So the mem’ries wouldn’t fade
If I could go back in to Calvin Place
Or hike to the bottom of the hill
I’d want to also go and visit
Ron, Shirley, Christine & Bill

When we were Santa Cruz young
We didn’t think too much about
Things our parents were doing
Like who they were countersuing
Or who had extra special clout
We only cared about each other
Baseball cards and Harvey West
Fitting in and real good manners
Visiting with the Catletts & Danners
And making sure we did our best

Just to ride down that trail again
To see the whole Monterey Bay
And to feel that strong breeze
Against my golden brown face

And to feel that strong breeze
Against my golden brown face

When we were Santa Cruz young
Oh, when we were Santa Cruz young.

The Last Time You See Me

The last time you see me
I hope I’m best that I can be
I hope I’m not stuck in a tree
The last time you see me

The last time that we talk
I hope it’s after a nice walk
Hope I’m not watchin’ the clock
The last time that we talk

I pray I’m not mean or filled with spite
I wish for a healthy exchange of words
Even if we’re out for a quick drink or bite
I hope we’re joyful like a couple of birds

The last time you look in my eyes
I would prefer it wasn’t a surprise
I hope we hug before our goodbyes
The last time you look in my eyes

I pray we’re not angry, instead at peace
I wish we’ll be pleasant and get along
I hope you know I’ve changed since then
And deep inside I know I was wrong

The last time you see me
I hope you’re happy and smile
I hope my friend, we reconcile
The last time you see me

The last time you see me.

Revised, 2021

Country Girl

She’ll have bright eyes
And highlighted hair
That girl will be kind
And will treat me fair

I like a good ol’ gal
Who likes to have fun
She’ll be my best pal
But she’ll be the one

Who’ll go out on the dance floor
With her girlfriends in the bar 
In public she’ll be a sweetheart
At home she’ll be my superstar
I’ll take her anywhere for kicks
Even a carnival tilt a whirl
With a goofy grin on her face
Oh, but she’s gotta be a country girl
Yeah she’s gotta be a country girl

She’ll love her horses
At her Daddy’s farm
When we’re on the town
She’ll always take my arm

She’ll be sentimental
And share her fond memories
Of all the good times she’s had
With the sisters from her sorority

She’ll head out on the dance floor
All eyes’ll be on her from the bar 
Everywhere she’ll be a sweetheart
And she’ll be my superstar
I’ll take her anywhere for kicks
Even the Boardwalk tilt a whirl
With a goofy grin on her face
Oh, but she’s gotta be a country girl
Yeah she’s gotta be a country girl

Wearin’ those high rise jeans
And loves her broken in boots
She’s good friends with Mama
And she’s proud of her roots
Family’s important to her
And her friends are too
She’s obsessed with Leann Rimes
And her favorite song is “Blue”

She’ll out drink me at the bar
And she might be a pool shark
Everywhere she’ll be a sweetheart
But she won’t be a walk in the park
I’ll take her anywhere for kicks
Even a State Fair tilt a whirl
She’ll have a goofy grin on her face
Oh, but she’s gotta be a country girl

Yeah she’s gotta be a country girl

August 13, 2021

Rich-Rich Redneck

You’ve got a Range Rover in the garage
A couple beat up trucks in the drive
You go huntin’ on the weekends
And you’ve never had to strive

It’s clear you’ve got your own bank
You’re livin easy and runnin’ free
You’re a Rich-Rich Redneck
And you’re not fooling me

Your man cave’s a movie theatre
And you built your own car wash
But your beer is cold blue ribbon
And you stink like fish by gosh

You’ve got a gun collection
Your Mama’s name is Midge
You’re a Rich-Rich Redneck
With moonshine in your fridge

I don’t wanna know you made your money
But damn, dude – you’re outta control
You’ve got so much crazy crap everywhere
It’s like you sold your body, mind and soul

With what you’re doin’ I know one thing
I could learn a lot of lessons from you
So what do you say can you teach me
to be a Rich-Rich Redneck like you?

I wanna have whatever you have
The secret you hide not so well
I wanna live a life like you do
Without havin’ to buy then sell

Maybe you invested in land or inventions
Maybe you’re dealing in heroin or cocaine
What’s that you say, you created it all
Using imagination and your pain?

So just from writing about my heartache
And recording it for the world to hear
I can be a Rich-Rich Redneck like you?
That sounds like a helluva career

That sounds like a helluva career!

October 1, 2021

Old-Money Man

She wanted an old-money man
one who wore a uniform
She wanted an old-money man
Someone who’d keep her warm
Someone who’d wear a silk tie
Someone who’d wear pricy suits
She wanted an old-money man
Not one who wore muddy boots

Well, I’m not an old-money man
I’m a denim and flannel guy
Yeah, I’m not an old-money man
I love sunsets and rhubarb pie
I love workin’ with my hands
and hangin’ at the corner bar
and I’d rather be drivin’ my truck,
than some fancy sports car

So, imagine my surprise
when I looked into her eyes
and she looked into mine
She decided right then n there
I was a breath of fresh air
and threw out all her vintage wine

Now, I’m not her old-money man
Turns out she’s a country girl at heart
Nah, I’m not her old-money man
Yes indeed, it’s ’til death do us part

Yeah, imagine her surprise
when she looked into my eyes
and I looked into hers
She chose me right then n there
I wasn’t rich, she didn’t care
We’re in for the better or worse

No, I’m not an old-money man
I’m a denim and t-shirt guy
Yeah, I’m not an old-money man
I love farming and apple pie
I love workin’ with my tools
and beers on Saturday night
and cuddlin’ on the couch
and livin’ just a normal life

Instead of livin’ in Boston or New York
We’re happy raisin’ kids on our land
And I’m grateful she chose me
Instead of some old-money man

Instead of some stuck up
old fart and old-money man

August 23, 2021

Country Club Members

When I met her, I didn’t think I’d end up
being her boyfriend in the wings
She didn’t tell me she was married
She wasn’t wearing her wedding rings

It was out at the tennis courts
we were on a mixed doubles team
She had the scent of wild blueberries
It was like she stepped out of a dream

And boy, did I fall for her
We’d talk about everything
She listened to me
I listened to her
Thinking we’d end up to be
together for the rest of our life
I’d be her heroic husband
and she’d be my dreamy wife
as Country Club members
making bank like they all do
Then something happened
I got an urgent call from you

You knew her and her husband Jim
Turns out you were a mutual friend
I stood there while on my phone
And all I could do was think of when

We sat there in the sun getting lunch
And no one there said a damn word
Man, did I feel so hurt and taken
Man, did I feel like a big ol’ turd

Wow, did I fall for her
We’d talk about everything
She listened to me
I listened to her
Thinking we’d end up to be
together for the rest of our years
I’d be her heroic husband
through all our trials and tears
as Country Club members
like my parents and hers, too
You said you were with him
and found out he already knew

So I had a sit down with her at the club
We had a “Define the Relationship” talk
Then we kissed after it was all over
and went down to the beach for a walk

Boy, did I fall all over again
They didn’t have what we had
She was counting on me
I was counting on her
Planning out what we’d end up to be
Together for the rest of our life
I’d be her heroic husband
and she’d be my forgiven wife
as Country Club members
like my parents and hers, too
And you, Jim and her and I
could end up in love that’s true

Oh yes you, Jim and her and I
could end up in a love that’s true

August 20, 2021

Etiquette Nazis

There she is at the dinner party
Telling them all how to behave
There she is at the dinner party
Doin’ that Princess Wave

There she is at the dinner party
Giving orders like an Uppity Dame
Expecting everyone to be Preppy
Expecting everyone to be the same

Somebody tell the Etiquette Nazi
Somebody tell her she’s all wrong
Somebody tell the Etiquette Nazi
Somebody tell her about this song
Somebody tell her we’re all different
Somebody tell her no one cares
Tell her someone blew chunks
At the bottom of the marble stairs

There he is at the Frat mixer
Telling them to use a coaster
There he is at the Frat mixer
Acting like a covert boaster

There he is at the Frat mixer
Sippin’ on his Chardonnay
There he is at the Frat mixer
Not impressed by what we say

Somebody tell the Etiquette Nazi
Somebody tell him he’s all wrong
Somebody tell the Etiquette Nazi
Somebody tell him about this song
Somebody tell him we’re all different
Somebody tell him he’s out of place
Tell him he’s dressed too polished
And he’s got a punchable face… Hey!

We’re all wearing flannels
With worn-out denim and Vans
They don’t like the finger food
But look at them holding hands
Look at them holding hands
Look at them holding hands

Somebody tell the Etiquette Nazis
Somebody tell them they’re wrong
Somebody tell the Etiquette Nazis
Somebody tell them about this song
Somebody tell them we’re all different
Somebody tell them no one cares
Oh, and tell them someone upchucked
All over their Grandma’s chairs

Yeah, tell them someone upchucked
All over their Grandma’s chairs

July 29, 2021

Behind the Lyric: You’ll discover I’m a big fan of the website TV Tropes. It’s actually a great resource to any kind of writer’s device possible and it really provides a shortcut to ideas, which I am a fan of now. So this one is inspired by a specific trope called: Etiquette Nazi. Check it out!