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Alchemy

by Joe Hedges

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about

This is my second full length solo album recorded and mixed over a period of several months mostly in my own apartment. Drums were played by Dan McQuinn and recorded by John McGuire. John also mixed two songs, “Ladders” and “Magic”.

“Hedges’ compositions — which range from broadly atmospheric to more direct and upbeat — are elegant, his songwriting mature and accomplished and his soundscapes provocative and full of depth.”
- Citybeat Magazine

credits

released 24 October 2010

Produced by Joe Hedges
All songs written by Joe Hedges © 2010 Machines & Dreams (BMI)

Recorded by Joe Hedges in his OTR apartment
and John McGuire at J-Mac Sound Studios in Cincinnati, OH
Additional recording on “Wait For You” by Eric Stewart at Geno's Sound Cavern in Middletown, OH

Mixed by Joe Hedges except:
"Magic" and "Ladders" Mixed by John McGuire at J-Mac Sound Studios in Cincinnati, OH

Dan McQuinn played drums on “Magic”, “I Can Try”, “Ladders”, “Proletarian”, “Cicadas”, and “Epinephrine”
Amy Hedges sang on “Cemetery Sun” and “Epinephrine”

Paintings and Design by Joe Hedges

This one's for you, Mom--thanks for your unconditional love and support over the years. Thanks to Emma for helping me to relax. This collection of songs would not be what it is without the contributions of the knowledgeable and talented John McGuire who kept my sonic senses in check by mixing "Magic" and "Ladders" and by carefully and artfully recording most of the lead vocals and drums. Thanks to my longtime musical brother and partner in rhythm Dan McQuinn who played some challenging and creative drum parts. Thanks also to Eric Stewart for always urging me to loosen up and have fun in the studio and to my sister Amy Hedges for lending me her beautiful voice and letting me borrow her accordian and her mandolin. Thanks to Brian Ives for being a good friend and keeping the JFK machine going. Thanks to Blumpy, who first urged me to make a solo album out of the strange songs I never played for anyone and who taught me a great deal about making music through producing my previous album Curvature. Thanks to Craig Barron, my music industry advisor and friend in Los Angeles. Thanks to Sam Dobrozsi, Travis Delaney, T Wong Miller, Jason Morgan, Ken Lewis, Aaron Thomas, and Drew Phillips--producers and musicians and friends who have taught, pushed, and inspired me over the years. Thanks also to Kevin Muente at Northern Kentucky University for the guidence that enabled me to create these oil paintings. Thanks especially to you! It is a great honor to communicate with you through the anceint mediums of music and art. I hope you enjoy listening to this album as much as I enjoyed making it.

Please keep in touch.

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Track Name: Magic
i don't believe in lies
only the yellow sky
words on the wings of fate
nothing to conjugate

holes in the wooden floor
down through a secret door
where all the pigeons go
after the evening show

magic
magic
i'm not an engineer
but i'll make you disappear


mercury into gold
by keeping the water cold
drink to an endless health
i can't control myself

magic
i'm not an engineer
but i'll make you disappear

magic
magic
i'm not an engineer
but i'll make it disappear


say what you know dear
today i'm going to let you go
i can't transmute this
but i can hide it
or deny it
i've got a brand new glow


magic
i'm not an engineer
i'll make you disappear

magic
magic
i'm not an engineer
but i'll make it disappear
Track Name: I Can Try
i can try and love
as much as you love me
i can do my best
you can make it easy

i can try and think
think the deepest thoughts
the deeper than the sea
maybe deep is all we've got

i can try and fly
there's got to be a way
my arms out like a bird
waiting on a saturday

i can try and steal
i can try and die
i can dream a dream
for every day i wonder why


maybe true love waits
worm hole in my chest
i travel everyday
i'm taking off your dress
ultraviolet light
maybe it's all my fault
there's no right or wrong
on every side thick walls

approach the speed of light
and time is slowing down
turn the headlights on
you can see me coming now

maybe true love waits
worm hole in my chest
i travel everyday
i'm taking off your dress
they say you could get crushed
or is it pulled apart?
there's no space and time
no matter in my heart

i can try and love
as much as you love me
i will do my best
you will make it easy
Track Name: Ladders
turn turn on the sky
there's a star identified
all the rooftops are alive with brewery ghosts

the nice things that you said
hang our legs off of the edge
there's song stuck in my head
i'm unopposed

ooo ooo oo oo oo

walking backwards
under ladders
making circles
in my house

vacant memories
i'm a sandstorm
vacant buildings
are burning down

speak it clearly
speaking slowly
i will sing 'til i'm
understood

walking backwards
under ladders
all i want is
something good


what what can you say
on the cloudiest of days
there's a pin stuck in the haze
i know it's here

ooo ooo oo oo oo


walking backwards
under ladders
making circles
in my house

vacant memories
i'm a sandstorm
vacant buildings
are burning down

speak it clearly
speaking slowly
i will sing 'til i'm
understood

walking backwards
under ladders
all i want is
something good


balancing on a line
i don't know to what it's tied
could it be to you
or a bright red balloon
balancing on a line
i don't know to what it's tied


walking backwards
under ladders
making circles
in my house

vacant memories
i'm a sandstorm
vacant buildings
are burning down

speak it clearly
speaking slowly
i will sing 'til i'm
understood

walking backwards
under ladders
all i want is
something good

walking backwards
under ladders
walking backwards
under ladders

underwater
speaking slowly
i will sing 'til i'm
understood

walking backwards
under ladders
all i want is
something good
Track Name: Proletarian
oh no
we're speaking only
with our minds and hands tonight

mark it down in charts and tables
i'm still human but i'm getting by

how long will it take them to get here
in the fields in the summer time

come quick the sun is crashing
i'm giving up when the weather dies


pass the place
where our bodies wait
don't slow down don't turn back now you're alive

lead from here
and you'll disappear
don't second guess it
your disconnected home


i didn't want to be found
i guess i had to roll
i didn't want to be found
i'm illogical
i didn't want to be found
but i could feel the pull
i guess i'm just a proletarian
i'm illogical


so tall we reached the heavens
so strong we swallowed suns
we learned to loved the darkness
i learned to need no one

these black machines will translate
back to words we can understand
these lips and mouths are useless
the skies have turned to land


pass the place
where our bodies wait
don't slow down don't turn back now you're alone

holding on
'til these wraiths are gone
don't second guess it
your disconnected home


i didn't want to be found
i guess i had to roll
i didn't want to be found
i'm illogical
i didn't want to be found
but i could feel the pull
i guess i'm just a proletarian
i'm illogical

maybe you're something more
than whose side you're on
maybe you're something more
than whose side
whose side
whose side


i didn't want to be found
i guess i had to roll
i didn't want to be found
i'm illogical
i didn't want to be found
but i could feel the pull
i guess i'm just a proletarian
i'm illogical
i guess i'm just a proletarian
i guess i'm just a proletarian
i'm illogical
i guess i'm just a proletarian
i guess i'm just a proletarian
i'm illogical


skin glows like rainbows
turning pixels into hands

blue lights unplugged i'm
reappearing where i stand

skin glows like rainbows
turning pixels into hands

blue lights unplugged i'm
reappearing where i stand
Track Name: Cicadas
fall asleep
with your head on my chest
i left all my memories and regrets
between the wood floor and your dress

cicadas
in the mouth of the lake
our hands will set them all free
wings dry off ever so slowly

just lay here with me
who cares
if we get hurt ?

magic elixer you are
i die with every spoonful
i die and come back in your arms

just lay here with me
who cares
if we get hurt?


stay for a week and it's over
fall fall back to the earth
tonight we live for our birth

cicadas
in the mouth of the lake

just lay here with me
who cares
if we get hurt?

just lay here with me
who cares
if we get lost?
Track Name: Wait For You
as soon as i wake up
i'm thinking of someone
now my eyes won't shut
what will i become
in the future i'm in style
with future friends for miles
and i make my future lover smile
i know you'd come to baby

fishing wire wrapped round
legs of birds on lakes
spots in werewolf eyes
when the feeling comes it aches
i'm in my future car
a jet black jaguar
and i save you with cpr
i knew you'd come to baby

ooo
i'll wait for you
i'll wait for you
i'll wait for you
i'll wait for you
i'll wait for

cincinnati sky
we were born with river water in our eyes
cincinnati sky
we were born with river water in our eyes

i make my future lover smile

ooo
i'll wait for you
i'll wait for you
i'll wait for you
i'll wait for you
i'll wait for you

you
i'll wait for you
i'll wait for you
i'll wait for you
i'll wait for you
i'll wait for
Track Name: Cemetery Sun
white birds don't want to land
the sunlight we caught in hands
castles we built in the sand
washed out washed out

i know you'll always be there
forever with me anywhere
from now on
the black in your hair
is washed out washed out

the sky is full of crows and doves
you taught me how to fall in love
with everything and everyone
i have a record player for a heart
you taught me how to fall apart
you taught me how to wonder constantly
at all i see
behold the cemetery sun

be all that you are
collecting the stars from the yard
st. peter hangs out in the car
next to the rear view

to be loved stuck in our mind
to be loved all of the time
sunset or dawn in rewind
the bright blue bright blue

sky is full of crows and doves
you taught me how to fall in love
with everything and everyone
i have a record player for a heart
you taught me how to fall apart
you taught me how to wonder constantly
at all i see
behold the cemetery sun
Track Name: Cadmiums
we use the brightest blues and the realest red
rich like a birthday cake like an icy spread

no theme spoils your careful mind you're the archetype
hopeless i'm not permitted but i'll stand and fight

fight

slip these moon beams into your summer drink
solemn shoe tip toe round all the things we think

toss me pinhole bullets i will hit the ground
oh emptiness, lose me now and i will not be found

found

see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes

oooh oooh whoa

i want to see
i want to paint
i want to know

oooh oooh whoa

i want to see
i want to paint
i want to know

eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
see with your eyes
Track Name: Half-Right
She keeps a part of you in a jar on her shelf
just out of sight of the animal eyes

you're like a shell needing a bolt of light to strike
moving your limbs to take you out of the night

take my heart
take my head
either way i'm half-right

this is the half that bleeds
this is the half that needs
to see something in the white of your eyes

release the weight attenuate the sound of fate
how long i'll wait
for you here in the fire

take my heart
take my head
either way i'm half-right

take my heart
take my head
either way i'm half-right

take my heart
take my head
either way i'm half-right

take my heart
take my head
either way i'm half-right

take my heart
take my head
either way i'm half-right

take my heart
take my head
either way i'm half-right
Track Name: Epinephrine
she came into the house with a bee sting
said she could feel her throat growing tight
are you sure it's not because you're frightened?
just relax. everything is alright

should we call Dr. Sharma or something?
just a shot and you should be fine
well i'm not one for blood or needles
but i drove it into her thigh

i slightly enjoyed it
oh some pain is worth it

like an atom that floats in the ocean
tossed in the waves and the knives
by the time i get to the sea shore
i won't remember where i spent all my life

i still don't belong here
oh where are you now my dear


i still feel your pulse when we're cities away
i stand on the line where the night meets the day
i'm evaporating until i'm a gray cloud traveling

god makes the wind i am blowing through space
i'll come back to bed after i see your face
i look down through your window who's there in my place?

...
Track Name: Christmas Day
what if you could feel alive
and unclose your eyes
everyone needs somewhere to hide

died on christmas day
sad enough anyway
even now we're on your side

your side.

waves of hallejulia's
a million came right through us
standing on the shore we could cry

whatever i become
i'm grateful for the sun
everyday she's on my side

my side.


your life is beautiful
pain makes you real
your life is beautiful
love lets you heal...