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FRONT ROOM MUSIC CATALOG
DANCING ME HOME

2012 Free Form: Rock, Jazz, Pop, Blues, Folk, County








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CDBABY link to hear song samples or purchase downloads







DJ Blues video link

Turkey Creek Canyon

Absentee Lover video link

Sour Grapes video link

Magic

Shelter Me

Dancing Me Home

Zoo

Silver & Turquoise

Where I Started From


CREDITS:
photo by Leslie Stricklan
of tres guitarristas left to right:
Jim, Kyle Pratt, George Coyne

Jim ~ acoustic guitars, lead vocals, finger snaps, lite percussion, and electric rhythm guitar on DJ Blues
George Coyne ~ acoustic & high-string guitars on Shelter Me, Dancing Me Home, electric guitars on DJ Blues
Mike Roberts ~ electric & stand-up fretless basses
Kevin Hall ~ drums
Jamie Hilboldt ~ keyboards
Beth Galiger ~ flute
Kyle Pratt ~ electric guitars on Zoo & Magic
Sally Townes ~ keyboards on Zoo & Magic
Ernie Durawa ~ drums on Zoo & Magic
Joey Colarusso ~ baritone sax on Sour Grapes
Danny Hawk ~ steel guitar on Dancing Me Home & Absentee Lover
Corinne Hall ~ viola on Shelter Me
Candace Bellamy ~ harmony vocals on DJ Blues & Magic
Terri Fann ~ harmony vocals on Absentee Lover, Dancing me Home, & Shelter Me


All songs were written by Jim Stricklan © 2011 Front Room Music ~ BMI, except: DJ Blues by John Ryland & Jim Stricklan, and Zoo by Jim Stricklan & Kyle Pratt
Recorded and mixed by George Coyne @ Parrot Tracks Studio ~ Manchaca, TX
Produced by Jim Stricklan & George Coyne for Kokobilly Music Productions
Mastered by Jerry Tubb @ Terra Nova Digital Audio ~ Austin, Texas

CD artwork and design by Michelle Rahbar, Mothership Arts – Austin, Texas
Photographs and tracking assistance by Leslie Stricklan
Studio photo of Jim by Rick Stricklan
Kokobilly Music is a subsidiary of Front Room Music ®


ABOUT THE SONGS:

Dancing Me Home (the CD) began as two projects and evolved into one of much higher ambition. As anyone who has spent time listening to me knows, I subscribe to the adage, “variety is the spice of life.” For example, the first five songs on the CD are: a rocker, a jazz tune, country, blues, and pop. I didn’t design it that way, it’s just my everyday process of making music. This CD goes full circle to my first album Whereabouts Unknown (1980). Thanks to George Coyne for recording and mixing the songs, and for his smoking guitar licks on DJ Blues.

DJ BLUES ~ This rocker was inspired by a poem written by friend and fellow music industry survivor, John Ryland. We both did time on your radio dial, back when AOR (album oriented rock) radio was a vast landscape free to paint with great music. Before the tunnel-vision corporate spiders came along and virtually killed an art form. I merely tweaked the words to Johnny’s powerful poem and added music. Our plan is for this to become the title song of a movie soundtrack one day.

TURKEY CREEK CANYON ~ Originally a slow ballad from my early Colorado years, it breathes fresh air three decades later, as a jazzy jam, a.k.a. Herbie Mann meets Herbie Hancock. This was one of the canyons I escaped to in the 70s to keep my life from imploding. Denver was a different scene back then but no less easy to survive in. “Getting small” in Tiny Town was a relaxing way to rock myself back into a peaceful zone. Ecology has always been a major theme in my songs.

ABSENTEE LOVER ~ It was written for a friend who died in the early 80s and who will always have a special place in my heart. I recall the first time I played it with my pal Stephen Fulton at a little bar-b-que joint on Federal Boulevard in Denver around 1984. Our Honky Tonk Fantasies LP was already out and I didn’t get around to recording "Absentee Lover" until 2010...Sally Townes made a video of my actual recording at Parrot Tracks Studio. (see You Tube)

SOUR GRAPES ~ This stream-of-consciousness ballad employs a haunting blues refrain and recalls a string of bitter memories over several decades…the kind of serious road bumps in life that most of us survive if we’re very lucky. Music, faith, and friends have pulled me through the hard times and I’m grateful to still be around. Sour Grapes respectfully re-affirms the “dues I’ve already paid.” I know so many who can relate to this song.

MAGIC ~ Another song written many moons ago and undergoing a major transformation. It’s an R&B inspired pop tune that searched for years to find its true identity. My friend Kyle Pratt was instrumental (no pun intended) in making this happen. And I love Candayce Bellamy's supporting vocals!

SHELTER ME ~ I penned this one during the vulnerability of struggling with drug addiction, and after losing several good friends. It's dedicated to my pal "Ranger" Butch Hause, who has always appreciated it.

DANCING ME HOME ~ The title song was inspired by the prose of friend Tom Neff and began while I was stuck on a Houston freeway in 1979. Tom says the original version I played for him wasn’t a waltz, but thirty years later it turned into one. The cars on the freeways are still backed up for miles.

ZOO ~ My guitar-playing pal Kyle Pratt was literally “instrumental” in making this tune come together! From a simple acoustic guitar demo called “Jim’s Jam,” Kyle turned this into a fully produced electric show stopper! A well-deserved nod goes to Sally Townes for her tasty keyboard licks. Texas Tornado friend Ernie Durawa played drums on this one (and Magic). The Zoo title came from a dream I had...we decided to leave the animals off.

SILVER & TURQUOISE ~ A romantic travelogue put to song, recalling a journey from long ago and far away.

WHERE I STARED FROM ~ An early Zen ballad, first recorded live at Café Nepenthes (Denver) in the late ‘70s. Due to the poor technical quality of my original recording, I decided recently to give it another pass in the studio, changing up a verse along the way.


LYRICS:


DJ BLUES
photos: John Ryland at KBPI by Phil Borgeson, Jim at KLOL

Nobody’s gonna save you tonight
you’ve played your hand on a midnight flight;
chasing skirts and rock n’ roll bands,
kiss them beauties goodnight,
it’s the DJ Blues—
with nothing left to lose, it’s the DJ Blues.
       
Lookin’ for someone to take a stand,
maybe someone with a helping hand—
my tank is empty, there’s just a drop,
nobody’s gonna love you when the music stops...
it’s the DJ Blues—
      
The world has turned twisted mad,
The money’s all played out…
All that’s left are silent screams
In a sea of doubt—
      
No freeform radios playin’ in the night,
another soul disappears from sight;
same old songs over and over again,
fighting a war that you just can’t win,       
it’s the DJ blues—
with nothing left to lose, it’s the DJ Blues.

No freedom left to choose,
It’s the DJ Blues…
Yea mama, it’s the DJ blues.

John Ryland & Jim Stricklan © 2011 Front Room Music



TURKEY CREEK CANYON

Loud city buses,
the crime and the noise;
time clock hypnosis, ephemeral joys—
prices get higher,
and fuel’s getting short;
I’d like to be leaving but don’t have the heart.

Turkey Creek Canyon,
with your clean mountain air…
Nature’s Companion has protected you there;
your mellow green ridges and clear waterfalls,
bright mountain flowers and high rocky walls,
if the real estate mongers don’t sell you for all.

We like to come see you,
escape from the heat;
to rest in your Tiny Town pine cone retreat—
You’re a special occasion
for my lady and me;
we love and respect you for the beauty we see…

Turkey Creek Canyon,
with your clean mountain air…
Nature’s Companion has protected you there;
Your mellow green ridges and clear waterfalls,
bright mountain flowers and high rocky walls,
if the real estate mongers don’t sell you for all.

Words & Music by Jim Stricklan © 1973 Front Room Music



ABSENTEE LOVER

I’ve never run for office but I’m still walkin’ tall—
I play new songs and tell old jokes with my back to the wall;
you’re asking me for patience honey, I do the best I can…
while dying for a woman who might live to understand.

If trust is the password, then where’s the missing part?
you have my vote of confidence in matters of the heart;
I know that I must trust you too and go out on a limb…
that’s why I asked to meet you here inside this old museum.

Absentee lover—do you think you can explain…
when you’re high in the sky and chasing down the midnight rain?
I’ll try to be here for you honey, when you come back down;
time passes so slow when there ain’t no love around.

You’re taking care of business and signing some new deal—
a temporary lover has his soft hands on the wheel;
I’m praying for your happiness and hoping you’ll succeed
at getting everything you want, especially what you need.

Words & music by Jim Stricklan © 1983 Front Room Music



SOUR GRAPES
photo from the Tom Noel Photo Collection

I can still see the neon lights on the Crazy Horse bar,
at midnight on East Colfax, as I sat there in my car—
it was many years ago, but it seems like yesterday;
still you ain’t heard the news about the dues…
that I’ve already paid.

I was down at Global Village almost every Wednesday night,
singin’ songs to feed my hunger, Dave’s spaghetti was alright—
it was many years ago, but it seems like yesterday;
still you ain’t heard the news about the dues…
that I’ve already paid.

I escaped the ghosts of winter up in Manitou Springs,
they chased me down to Lincoln town
when Nixon was the king;
it was many years ago, but it seems like yesterday;
still you ain’t heard the news about the dues…
that I’ve already paid.

Busted down on Franklin Street, thrown in the calaboose,
steel bars and frozen concrete, random victims of abuse—
for the crime of being human, blind justice never weighed;
still you ain’t heard the news about the dues…
that I’ve already paid.

Beamed out across the airwaves, mostly talkin’ to myself,
they put me on a pedestal, then back upon the shelf—
like some old forgotten song, you might’ve heard along the way;
can it be you’re still confused about the dues…
that I’ve already paid?

I’ve been close to fame and fortune,
so I’ve seen enough to know—
God grant me grace and dignity before I have to go;
respect is hard to come by, and the music starts to fade…
still you ain’t heard the news about the dues…
that I’ve already paid.

Words & Music by Jim Stricklan © 2010 Front Room Music



MAGIC

That old magic—
It ain’t there anymore;
In this empty heart, there’s no one left
for you to ignore.

One day it washed away—
like a river to the sea;
to find that kind of love again
would take eternity.

Magic is for dreamers,
lovers, young and old;
those who don’t believe in love
have no magic in their soul…

We can’t turn back—
those rusty hands of time;
we can’t change our plans,
as easy as we change our minds.

Something special—
something so sweet and true;
when we looked away, it vanished
like the morning dew.

Words & Music by Jim Stricklan © 1982 Front Room Music



SHELTER ME

Christ on a bicycle,
riding through Central Park—
I knew He was coming back,
but I could not see Him in the dark…
won’t you shelter me, a candle in the wind?
please shelter me;
if I go out I might not light again.

I’ve lost my innocence;
I’ve lost some real good friends—
don’t need to know the reason why,
just teach me to love ‘em before the end…
won’t you shelter me, a candle in the wind?
please shelter me;
if I go out I might now light again.

I don’t always live up to the bible—
neither do I live by the gun;
when I lay me down to sleep
and pray my soul to keep…
will they blow us all to kingdom come?

God blessed Hank Williams…
when he first saw the light;
but his day had just begun
when he slipped into the night—
won’t you shelter me, a candle in the wind?
please shelter me;
if I go out I might not light again.
if I go out I might not light again.

Words & Music by Jim Stricklan © 1987 Front Room Music ®



DANCING ME HOME

It’s a heck of a time to look a gift horse in the mouth—
when the weather turns cold, you wanna be way down south,
your reasons are righteous but memories still torture your mind;
It’s a long way from Houston to Denver, my friend—
you’ve been on that road and the road never ends…
now you dream of the mountains and you’ve sure got
some tall ones to climb…

The cars on the freeways are backed up for miles—
sometimes going nowhere can take quite awhile;
I hope someone so dear was put here for dancing me home.
I’ve danced with the shadows and sang in the choir
of Heavenly angels with souls all on fire—
the devil’s an outlaw who’s trying to make me do wrong;
so help me sweet Jesus that I will not fail…
keep me up in the stirrups and true on the trail,
this old desperado is weary from being alone…

The cars on the freeways are backed up for miles—
sometimes going nowhere can take quite awhile;
I hope someone so dear was put here for dancing me home.

Words & music by Jim Stricklan © 1986 Front Room Music



SILVER AND TURQUOISE

I only think of you in summer,
though you were like an early spring—
It was well into the fall when I fell,
You faded like a winter’s dream…

We made love in Albuquerque,
and bought jewelry on the street—
we drank champagne in Dallas, Texas,
and thought we’d die there from the heat…

Wasn’t that one fun vacation!?
Crested Butte to Santa Fe—
you looked so good in silver and turquoise,
I will remember you that way,
I will remember you that way.

Remember climbing that old mountain?
how hard it was to get back down—
sometimes in life we’re bound to slip and slide,
yea, we all lose a little ground…

I miss you mostly in the morning,
before the light lets itself in—
I hope you know that wherever you go,
I’m here if you should need a friend…

Words and music by Jim Stricklan © 1984 Front Room Music



WHERE I STARTED FROM

Some people live up in the city,
and others live down on the farm—
me, I live in a world of make believe…
don’t mean nobody any harm;

Often times I wonder on to distant shores,
seeking out what I may find—
it’s not so much to traveling anymore…
as a chance to leave my troubles all behind.

Anyway, I think I’m bound to end up
where I started from;
and I can’t help wondering about
the man I’ve become—

I ran into some kindred spirits
who love to play that rock ‘n roll;
we released the genie from the bottle,
and called it free-form radio…

I have friends who draw me pictures,
and friends who share their songs for free;
they don’t always understand,
but they love me all the same;
you know that means a lot to me.

Words & Music by Jim Stricklan © 1972 ~ Front Room Music


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