Under the Big Oak Tree

by Under the Big Oak Tree

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credits

released August 5, 2014

“Farmer’s Son” and “Black Mountain Rum” by Sean Cleary.
All other songs by Simon Fink.
"Will You Go with Me?" contains words from "An Invite, to Eternity" by John Clare.

Musicians:
Kristin Hamilton (vocals, guitar)
Simon Fink (fiddle, mandolin, banjo, autoharp, vocals)
Doug Ward (bass, vocals)
Sean Cleary (Dobro & National guitars, vocals)

Recorded at Westend Studio by Justin Mantooth
Mastered by Eureka Mastering

Album Art/Design: Box Cardinal Collective
Photography: Goode Food Delivered

Special thanks to: Our Kickstarter supporters!
Also: Rocky Cathcart, Dixon Leavers, Joey & Nicole Kruger, Leon Fink & Susan Levine

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about

Under the Big Oak Tree St. Joseph, Missouri

Under the Big Oak Tree’s blend of vintage folk, acoustic country, & traditional bluegrass has been described as “warm” and “picturesque” with “flawless harmonies.”

The band’s 2014 debut recording stood out as “one of the most lush, beautiful records to come out of the local scene,” and made multiple year-end best lists. The group’s second album, Local Honey, will be released on MudStomp Records.
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Track Name: Under the Big Oak Tree
Where the blacktop ends
And the road unwinds
And the air gets hotter and thicker than the summertime

Where the babbling brook
Meets the meadow fare
And the songs of the crickets and the sparrows all fill the air

Won’t you take me down
Where the green grass grows
Way up on the hill there’s a spot that nobody knows

And when I die
Won’t you bury me
Across the white valley, underneath the big oak tree

Where the dew settles down
On the cypress grove
And the honeybee dances with the flowers in the valley below

And the dusky moss
Grows on the old stone well
And the frog sits by the water and sings until he drinks his fill

Won’t you take me down
Where the green grass grows
Way up on the hill there’s a spot that nobody knows

And when I die
Won’t you bury me
Across the white valley, underneath the big oak tree

Well they worked this land
‘Til their hands ran red
Carrying the weight of the day with them when they came back home to rest

But now the creeks run dry
And the highways roll
And the crickets and the songbirds don’t come around anymore

But when the air gets clear
On a cool spring night
You can still hear the wildcat prowling in the pale moonlight

Or when the sky gets true
Like a robin’s egg
And the cool breeze whispers softly in rhythm right to your head

Won’t you take me down
Where the green grass grows
Way up on the hill there’s a spot that nobody knows

And when I die
Won’t you bury me
Across the white valley, underneath the big oak tree

So let the music play
Let the river run free
Buryin’ my troubles underneath the big oak tree
Track Name: Little Ghost
I have a little ghost
He bangs around all night
He don’t mean no harm
He’s been here all my life

Go away little ghost
Don’t bother me no more
I swear that I
Will listen to your song tomorrow

Left him on the church doorstep
He followed me back home
He trailed me to Chicago
Where I came to be alone

The gypsy on North Avenue
She tried to set him free
If he flew away
How lonely I would be
Track Name: Farmer's Son
I was born a farmer’s son, never complained about where I was from
Learned how to work till the job was done, I’ll always be a farmer’s son

I knew it all at twenty one, had me a plan to leave and run
This farmer’s life man I was done, thought I could change a farmer’s son
Bridge:
Them dusty fields, they gave me grit, every ten years the floods would hit
Though boom and bust we learned to live, and through it all I learned to give

Now I know where I’ll end up, back on the land that I love
The fate of my boys is all but done, they’ll always be a farmer’s son
They’ll always be a farmer’s son, they’ll always be a farmer’s son
Track Name: Will You Go with Me?
Will you go with me, sweet baby?
Oh darling, will you go with me?
Through the valley depths of shade
Through night’s dark obscurity
Where the wind has lost its way
Where the nighttime meets the day
And where there is no light to see
Sweet baby will you go with me?

Down the darkened road of night
Past the cars’ and trucks’ high-beam light
Into stardust, decay
Past the devil’s tail along the way
Where the smell of gasoline
Meets the purifying clean
And no one ever shall cross
Where nothing’s won and nothing’s lost

Through the blinding light of the day
Where the horns blow out from the bay
Where the clouds part the sun
Where the angels fear to run
In the pools of time long gone
Where the siren sings her song
And there’s no one left to hear
Will you go with me my dear?

Will you go with me, sweet baby?
Oh darling, will you go with me?
To where I can’t explain
Off the road that has no name
Where the shepherd leads his sheep
Where the dark and light meet
Where the river runs into the sea
Oh darling, will you go with me?
Track Name: Lullaby
As we walk by the water
Running from the shadows
Blinded by the footprints in the sand
And the waves come a’callin
And swallow up the orphans
And sweep them out to far and distant lands

There is no one
Who could take me away from you

As we sit by the fire
Our songs catch the flame
And burn in the ashes
Like blue eyes in the rain
And we curse at the counter
With our hands on the bible
As silent storm of grievance breaks in tune

There is no one
Who could take me away from you
There is no way
I would let that happen

As we walk by the water
Chasing no tomorrows
Running from the razor
That cleanses pain and sorrow
And blindly go a’whistlin
Past graveyards and past counties
Til all the time gets swallowed once again

There is no one
Who could take me away from you
Track Name: Missouri
Underneath the bells of May
We put our cares away
And rambled out looking for the sun
And we laid in the sands
Clovers in our hands
And the water rushed under and over

I will sit I will sway
‘Neath the hills of Nodaway
Glory, hallelujah
If there ever was a time
She faded from my mind
It’s gone with the wide, wide Missouri

And the wheels of industry
Rolled from Tennessee
Implanted on the river’s southern shore
And with blood, bricks, and mortar
They led the hogs to slaughter
And the city’s sons and daughters were provided for

I will sit I will sway
‘Neath the hills of Nodaway
Glory, hallelujah
If there ever was a time
She faded from my mind
It’s gone with the wide, wide Missouri

From the finest quarry stones
They built their sterling homes
High in the bluffs north of town
But the iron gears of fate
Will pause at no one’s gate
When the winds from Dakota came raining down

I will sit I will sway
‘Neath the hills of Nodaway
Glory, hallelujah
If there ever was a time
She faded from my mind
It’s gone with the wide, wide Missouri
Track Name: Heart's on Fire
My heart’s on fire
Its burning white
I heard you whisper to me last night
I traced your footsteps through the morning dew
My heart’s on fire
It’s burning blue

My heart’s on fire
At the break of day
Through the bramble and briar
And the crooked maze
I never wonder which way to go
I watch the light
It lets me know

There was a time when our love was young
We set out early in the sun
We found the waterfall
Laid by a stream
Was it real or just a dream?

I rowed the oceans
I damned the creeks
I read your books
I learned to speak
I climbed a mountain to scream your name
My heart’s on fire
It keeps the flame

My heart’s on fire from dusk til dawn
I’ll keep a’walkin this road I’m on
I’ll never waver
I’ll never know
My heart’s on fire
It’s burning slow
Track Name: Desert Flowers
Bring me your tired and your troubled eyes
Show me the hidden faces twisted with frustration
Bring me your wretched heart
I’ll raise a cool hand and lay it on your brow

Give me everything tangled and torn
And I will make a song of it
Enough to make you weep
And from your tears will spring a field of blooming desert flowers

If it lasts a year of midnights
We will take the time to rest our weary souls
And if the fires turn the forests black
Then I will help you rake the ashes to grow a new garden

Give me everything tattered and bruised
And I will make a song of it
Enough to make you weep
And from your tears will spring a field of blooming desert flowers

Where life’s decayed we will plant our seeds
Where earth is bitter we will till until its sweet
Where no water runs we’ll dig
And this is how we will grow the world green again

Give me everybody tangled and torn
And I will sing a song with them
Enough to make the generations weep
And from the tears will spring a field of desert flowers
Track Name: Black Mountain Rum
The Dogwoods are blooming. In the hills north of town
Deep in a holler, my still can be found

Chorus
The water runs clean, from the spring where it comes
Soon we’ll be drinking the black mountain rum

The creek sure looks purdy, when the spring rains come
The blue birds are singing, in the cool morning sun

Chorus

Old Mr. Kinnley, I said he was the one
He showed me the way, to the black mountain rum

Chorus
Track Name: Such a Fine Mess
YOUNGER:
O my dear it’s such a fine mess
What will be done, what will be done?
I love two and both I have kissed
What will be done my dear?

One is round as a wagon wheel
What will be done, what will be done?
One is skinnier than a sour apple peal
What will be done my dear?

O my dear it’s such a fine mess
What will be done, what will be done?
I love two and both I have kissed
What will be done my dear?

One’s more guilded than a gold man’s locket
What will be done, what will be done?
One is poorer than a poet’s pocket
What will be done my dear?

OLDER:
Take your tome don’t fall too soon
What will be done, what will be done?
Never sow your seeds neath the wax of the moon
What will be done my dear?

TOGETHER:
O my dear it’s such a fine mess
What will be done, what will be done?
I/you love two and both I/you have kissed
What will be done my dear?

OLDER:
Look for a sign by the water’s edge
What will be done, what will be done?
Steal a branch off the heathered hedge
What will be done my dear?

YOUNGER:
O my dear it’s such a fine mess
What will be done, what will be done?
There’s a third one I must confess

OLDER:
O what will be done my dear?

YOUNGER:
He’s not too lean and he’s not too round
What will be done, what will be done?
He’s not so poor but he’s not so proud
What will be done my dear?

TOGETHER:
O my dear it’s such a fine mess
What will be done, what will be done?
There are three, but one I/you love best
What will be done my dear?
What will be done my dear?