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Music For Minorities

by Mikel Rouse

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1.
THAT’S MY UNIVERSE You caught me in the middle Of making History An interrupted angel Guided by TV I made my own religion I made up my own verse I gave myself permission And that’s my universe Lay off my inspiration Make room for what you lack Go out and make a living And get my money back I made my own religion I made up my own verse I gave myself permission And that’s my universe You think you got my number Registered at birth An interrupted angel For all that it is worth I made my own religion I made up my own verse I gave myself permission And that’s my universe
2.
THOSE DAYS LONG GONE Maybe caught dyin’ is better alone Maybe I’m crazy for tryin’ to keep it my own And when I didn’t need money to hold up my head Maybe I’m crazy denying I’m better off dead Those days long gone Those days long gone What if tomorrow is not very far? And I continue to borrow from memory’s bar When all the mixers and martyrs have gone to my head And I refuse to remember the last thing she said Those days long gone Those days long gone Maybe caught dyin’ is better alone When you’ve got no one to bother and no one to phone When all the mixers and martyrs have gone to my head Maybe I’m crazy denying I’m better off dead Those days long gone Those days long gone
3.
Candy Cane 03:39
CANDY CANE You say why? I’ll tell you You say why? I’ll tell you You say why? I’ll tell you You say why? I’ll tell you Take a look, take a look at my candy cane Take a look at my candy cane Take a look at my candy cane Take a look at my candy
4.
WHERE ARE THOSE GIRLS Don’t worry ‘bout the good life That’s already been taken Don’t worry ‘bout your bad dreams Those bad dreams will awaken The photos you’ll remember And where are those girls? They’re safe in your mind That goes for the one That left you behind And where are those girls? Those two of a kind Don’t worry “bout your problems “Cause all of them are taken Don’t worry ‘bout the next thing The heart that you’ll be breakin’ The photos you’ll remember And where are those girls? They’re safe in your mind That goes for the one That left you behind And where are those girls? Those two of a kind
5.
I KNOW SOMETHING’S WRONG What is the reason, why can’t I even Get under someone’s door? Better than beaten, somthin’ is eatin’ Me right down to the core I know something is wrong I know something is wrong I know something is wrong with me ‘Cause it was easy aimin’ to please me Everyone got to try Now I’m in trouble here in this bubble Living’s the reason why I know something is wrong I know something is wrong I know something is wrong with me Everyone scramble, everyone gamble Everyone try to score Better than beaten, somethin’ is eatin’ Me right down to the core I know I know
6.
Rubber Feet 03:17
RUBBER FEET Baby got a new pair of shoes, she got rubber feet Baby orthopedic when she singin’ the blues She got rubber feet Catch her with a belly of love, she got rubber feet Catch in a bottle with the light from above She got rubber feet Rubber feet rubber feet rubber feet She got rubber feet Rubber feet rubber feet rubber feet rubber feet She got rubber feet Caleb on a natural high, he got rubber feet Caleb on a mountain and he’s ready to fly He got rubber feet Preacher got a market to please, he got rubber feet Preach is a reason for the social disease He got rubber feet Rubber feet rubber feet rubber feet He got rubber feet Rubber feet rubber feet rubber feet rubber feet He got rubber feet Everybody down on your knees, you got rubber feet Everybody cookin’ at a hundred degrees You got rubber feet People put your hands in the air, you got rubber feet Make a peace sign like you just don’t care You got rubber feet Rubber feet rubber feet rubber feet You got rubber feet
7.
SMOKERS EXPRESS Lawyers and healers and rats for all time Chain smoking under the stars Lying in wait in the back of your mind Making their way out of bars Glad handing, back slapping all through the night Smokers express and the left to go right It could be anyone Buyers and sellers collecting their fee Wagering time from their lives Portraits of horrible weak in the knee Stuck with their left over wives Glad handing, back slapping all through the night Smokers express and the left to go right It could be anyone
8.
GUIDE TO ANGELS Never believe what you hear unless you hear it from me And baby I likes what I see Hollywood set me free and give me just a little relief But now the picture’s following me Hit the road, this is you ticket home This is your guide to angels asleep on the lawn This is your guide to angels, the bus leaves at dawn If it were up to me I wouldn’t even follow the beat Remembering the moment we meet Never believe what you hear unless you hear it from me And now the picture’s setting me free Hit the road, this is you ticket home This is your guide to angels asleep on the lawn This is your guide to angels, the bus leaves at dawn This is your guide to angels, blink and they’re gone If it were up to me I wouldn’t even know the route Hollywood set me free, guide to the angels with the loot
9.
JOHNNY DOLLAR Your deal with the devil is wholesale Born inside of America, calculator free Giddy up to the market place, market it to me Get the runaround, make a money sound Maybe part the sea God without a vote, sittin’ on his boat Noah wannabe Where’s old Johnny Dollar now? Bound to be a sacred cow Where’s old Johnny? Where’s old Johnny Dollar now? Is it just for the money man, is it for the fee? Is it just for the bed and board, tell me that’s the key Get the runaround, make a money sound Maybe part the sea God without a vote, sittin’ on his boat Noah wannabe Where’s old Johnny Dollar now? Bound to be a sacred cow Where’s old Johnny slip and slidy? Where’s old Johnny torn and tidy? Where’s old Johnny high and mighty? Where’s old Johnny? Where’s old Johnny Dollar now? Is it just for the money or just for you?
10.
Love's Gun 03:03
LOVE’S GUN As seen on TV when the markets agree Is a right and a wrong so we all get along And a tip from love’s gun and your forgotten son’s thinkin’ Here’s my best side, take this free ride Here comes love’s gun, radio run forgotten son Here comes love’s gun, radio run forgotten son As seen from above when the market’s in love Is a shift to the right so we’re all up tonight And a tip from love’s gun and your forgotten son’s thinkin’ Here’s the flipside of a landslide Here comes love’s gun, radio run forgotten son Here comes love’s gun, radio run forgotten son Your only forgotten son on the radio Heard on the radio: only forgotten son
11.
A PRESIDENT UP MY SLEEVE You’d never believe a president up my sleeve Materialize: a leader before your eyes And second to none, this party for having fun Democracy wise and freedom for every size And even in times of political nursery rhymes This effort to dream is easier than it seems A special reprieve: a president up my sleeve A special reprieve: a president up my sleeve You’d better believe a president up my sleeve Who goes it alone with every nation known And taking a bride, a woman of genocide A widow to war that’s selling from door to door And even in times of political nursery rhymes This effort to dream is easier than it seems A special reprieve: a president up my sleeve A special reprieve: a president up my sleeve President up my sleeve presidential reprieve President up my sleeve presidential reprieve
12.
PASSING PHASE I bet you wonder how I knew That plans go upside down for you And time stands still before your feet As surely as the seasons meet And life is just a passing phase Through all your nights And life is just a passing phase Through all your nights and all your days I’ll take you partner, rain or shine I’ll hold your heart and you’ll hold mine And there we’ll stand, our lives complete As surely as the seasons meet And life is just a passing phase Through all your nights And life is just a passing phase Through all your nights and all your days
13.
CHANGE FOR MY BABY I don’t know nothin’ and something else But the world keeps moving all by itself And I’d probably save her if I only could Change for my baby make me feel so good Change for my baby make me knock on wood Loose change in my pocket, change in my hand A man made mountain on borrowed land And I even got photos of where I stood Change for my baby make me feel so good Change for my baby make me knock on wood The luckless in love with no place to go They got money and movies and kids in tow And they’re probably shopping, and well they should Change for my baby make me feel so good Change for my baby make me knock on wood Well I guarantee nothing, I know what’s right I got priority seating on the earth tonight And I even got sanctions in the neighborhood Change for my baby make me feel so good Change for my baby make me knock on wood
14.
HOW WAS YOUR HOUSE This is over, this is done This was low cal fun You were dreamin’, I was dreamed Well that’s how it seemed You were happy, I was blue But if not for you I’d take steroids, I’d take mace Just to see your face How was your house and how was my house? The hours of life that were free There’s heaven on earth ‘cause I’ve seen it in you And I even caught glimpses in me This is over, I was dreamed We were double teamed You were happy, I was blue But if not for you

about

Music For Minorities represents a quiet departure from the direction and performance of larger multimedia works. Another chance to be solo on the road again; a guitar, a harmonica, a video deck. The piece is a reflection of my time spent in the Delta as a composer in residence through the Meet The Composer New Residencies program. It’s also a kind of video memoir of my film and theatrical works, life in New York, and friends old and new. A recorded soundscape of percussion and multiple guitars are the accompaniment to a live performance that incorporates stories, interviews and songs with synchronized video. Interviews from numerous personalities in both Louisiana and New York are combined as I underscore (musically, that is) their reflections. This assemblage is a modest integration of film, music and performance, offering another approach to story telling in the media age.

As abstract images and sound combine with the various stories and insights of the subjects interviewed, an illustration of memory is created. Seemingly unrelated video images merge with the images of the storytellers to create a common thread: the views of the Silent Minority. The soundtrack to this “live film” is Music For Minorities, a collection of songs that express my continuing interest in using complex structures within the framework of vernacular music. The LA Times said: Music for Minorities is deceptively simple and straightforward Americana. You take from it as much or as little as you want. No one can really say what it is to be an American these days. But this is a meaningful piece of the puzzle.

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released May 18, 2005

© 2005 Mikel Rouse
All rights reserved
Published by Club Soda Music (ASCAP)

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Mikel Rouse New York, New York

Mikel Rouse is a New York-based composer, director, performer and recording artist hailed as “a composer many believe to be the best of his generation.” (NY Times 2002) His works include 25 records, 7 films (including Funding and Music For Minorities), and a trilogy of media operas: Failing Kansas, Dennis Cleveland and The End Of Cinematics. ... more

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