Folk Songs

by Bradley Herr

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...and suddenly, I couldn't not write songs anymore. I'd always been too afraid to try to write full blown songs with, you know, words. Then, I tried and couldn't turn it off. That's why the song Blurry is included here. I will admit to anyone that it's far from my best piece of music, but it's the first one I recorded for which I forced myself to write and sing something.

Folk Songs is a collection of songs written and recorded between February and March of 2015. All songs by Bradley Herr.


released April 7, 2015

bth performed this album on:

Martin, Yamaha, Aria, Squier and Ibanez guitars,
LTD and Epiphone basses,
an Appalachian mandolin,
Hohner harmonicas,
a Korg Microkorg synthesizer
an Alesis DM10 electronic drum kit,
MAudio and Alesis MIDI inputs,
various hand percussion instruments found on the floor.

He also sang using a larynx that he found.



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Bradley Herr Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

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Track Name: Slack Blue and the Ohio Touch
He is a tall God,
He is a wise God,
with a big, white beard,
and flowing robes,
His love is a blessing,
His love is Holy
He grows my food,
and mends my clothes.

He asked me to be pure,
to always love Him,
He asked me to take my
kin to be cleansed,
to take my children,
down to the river,
to let the water
anoint their heads.

I held them under
the flowing river
until their sins all
was washed away,
and He was happy
and blessed my Holy
and I will be in
His Heaven someday

People, take you children
down to the river
and hold them under
until they're clean
and if you're lucky
God might just bless you
and hold your hand
and watch you sleep

He is a tall God,
He is a wise God
with a big white beard
and flowing robes.
His hand has touched me,
He touched my children
and when I die
I'll be reborn.
Track Name: These Pieces Go...
...and I've seen what we've done,
how we move, how we run,
we fall so far, we burn our yards,
we crash so hard we fall apart

...these pieces go...
...these pieces go...

The silver lake is full of snakes,
the bitter rind, the candied time,
we dredge the land, we rake the seas
for broken backs and broken knees

...these pieces go...
...these pieces go...

My splintered bones, my shattered spine,
my thunder head, my static line

...these pieces go...
...these pieces go...

And so they die, we die again,
the baby ghosts, the withered men,
this has begun, so can it end,
we find a way, there is no end

...these pieces go...
...these pieces go...

...these pieces go...
...these pieces go...
Track Name: Elevation
Noise maker in a plastic cup,
an impression of the riot scene,
reading books about something,
faces in a magazine

Elevation don't mean shit when you don't have the means to reach it

Words blinking on a screen,
onion crackers make me feel sick,
bullet holes that no one sees,
Bibles in the basement

Elevation don't mean shit when you can't hear enough to see it

Staying happy with orange pills,
work until the horse dies,
pink umbrellas and a catfish suit,
iodine in the ink supply

Elevation don't mean shit when you don't have the head to teach it

Taping paper to a dollar bill,
killed the dog and got away with it
Track Name: Migraine
Deep throb
Hard sprain
Bright light

Deep cut
Think line
Short spine

Hallucinate the waking day
Perforate the things you say

Head vent
Red wine

Hard life
Soft lay
This way

Hallucinate the waking day
Incarcerate the living clay

Good job
Fine line
Bad knees
Bad times

Cracked head
Dead light
Burnt bread
Bad sight

Hallucinate the waking day
Incinerate the selfish way

Face burn
Fire line

Give in
Bad fight
Good night

Good night
Track Name: Walk Across
She's in your graces,
don't fuck this up,
you've got your wires,
I've got my luck

I'd love to tell you,
you'll be alright,
but you need somewhere
that you can sleep tonight

This world was meant
for people bigger than I am,
I can't give you advice
when I can't give you a hand

So please keep trying,
I notice every day,
I'll always love you
in my own crazy way

She loved to tell us
that we were all we had,
your head was spinning,
and mine was always bad

You were a good kid,
and I was too,
but I'll always hurt you,
no matter what you do

Just let me know that
you'll never close that door
we could be something
we've never been before

Peeling your eyes up,
back seat in a van,
that's where it ends,
'cause that's where it all began
Track Name: Carbon (Someone Better Than Me)
It's not a sunburn and it's not a rash,
but my skin feels like hell and my head's full of trash,
the words I write don't mean nothing at all,
it's just things that I write cause I'm all full of ball

So I guess I could pick from a jar,
anything that you like and then use this guitar,
to write a song about the sky or street,
or the up or the down or the cold or the heat
Track Name: Let You Down
If this is how it goes,
then I don't want to ride,
can we slow down or stop,
or find some place to hide

My head hurts every day,
my closet full of noise,
my bones were ground away,
my choices not my choice

It's simple...

We try, we try, we try,
we fail where others don't,
we push to clear a way,
we fall because we won't

I can't live up to what
you tried to grow in me
I have to let you down,
I have to let you see

It's simple...

Confessions of this kind
are better left unsaid,
to keep this pot lid closed
and wait until you're dead

I thought I'd put it in
a place you'd never see
so words of mine seem best,
so it can stay with me

It's simple...
Track Name: Nothing
Nothing to say.