Loners, Stoners and Prison Brides

by Penelope Houston

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Return to Sender (a side project from Normal Records in Germany) was a mail-order-only label that printed limited numbers of each CDs packaged in nicely designed digipaks. They released 3 collections of obscure material from me. All of them are out-of-print and getting harder and harder to find. Loners is RTS number 34.

10 tracks from 1999 + 2000 recorded absolutely live featuring:

credits

released June 1, 2000

Penelope Houston: vocals, melodica & autoharp.
Michael Papenberg: guitar.
Katherine Chase: bass, guitar & backing vocals.
Dawn Richardson: drums & samples (track 1 + 4).
Chuck Prophet: guitar (track 9 + 10).
Stephanie Finch: keyboards (track 9 + 10).
Steve Bowman: drums (track 9 + 10).

Tracks 1 & 4 recorded live at KPFA Radio, Berkeley, CA June 1999 by Tony Ferro.
Tracks 2, 3 & 8 recorded live at KPFA Radio Feb 2000 by Tony Ferro.
Track 5 – 7 recorded live at Noe Valley Ministry, SF, CA June 2000.
Tracks 9 & 10 recorded live at Slim’s, SF, CA Nov 1998 by Michael Rodriguez.
Mastered at the Wally Sound, Oakland CA.
Photo by George Westcott.

Tracks 3,5 and 9 written by P.Houston, track 1 by Houston/ Nemzer/Strauss tracks 4, 6 and 8 by Houston/P.Johnson, track 10 by Houston/Prophet.

All songs © 2000 Doctor P P Music, except 4 and 6 © 2000 Doctor P P Music/Warner Chappell, GmbH, and 10 © 2000 Doctor P P Music/Funzalo Music.

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Penelope Houston Oakland, California

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Track Name: Sweetheart (Live Mix Version)
Somebody tell somebody else lies
Like an avalanche they're going to make you cry
Everybody knows when you've been wrong
I remember our love was born
hanging laundry in a lightening storm
Hid in the cellar as long as we could
Well, the corn ran out and the water ran out
and we had to come out when the honey ran out
Out of the forest and into the woods

Sweetheart, they're going to talk about us
Well, I say live and let die
Sweetheart, they're going to talk about us
Well, I say live and let die

Will my lucky star shine down tonight
on a sleeping town in a northern light
Shut my eyes, I can see their words fall down

I lay my head on a pillow of stone
wrap myself in a sinners robe
Sticks and stones, I'm going to build myself a home
With their sticks and stones I'm going to build my home

Sweetheart, they're going to talk about us
Well, I say live and let die
Sweetheart, they're going to talk about us
Well, I say live and let die

Somebody tell somebody else lies
Like an avalanche they're going to make you cry
Everybody knows when you've been wrong

Will my lucky star shine down tonight
on a sleeping town in a northern light
Shut my eyes, I can see their words fall down
And their sticks and stones are going to build my home
With their sticks and stones I'm going to build myself a home

Sweetheart, they're going to talk about us
Well, I say live and let die
Sweetheart, they're going to talk about us
Well, I say live and let die
Track Name: Pale Green Girl (live acoustic)
She's a pale green girl
sometime she's going to fly away
She's a pale green girl
but she might come back any day

And you cant look her in the eye
she knows a few too many things
You never look her in the eye
but wait 'til night, and then she sings

She going to burn down someone's house
you know your eyes are going to sting
She going to burn down someone's house just to dry her wings

She's a pale green girl
sometime she's going to float away
She's a pale green girl
but she might come back any day

She going to burn down someone's house
you know your eyes are going to sting
she going to burn down someone's house just to dry her wings

She's a pale green girl
sometime she's going to fly away
She's a pale green girl
but she might come back any day

She knows the way you pace the floor
she knows the way you fucked her dry
She knows you're tapping on her door
you never heard a baby cry

She going to burn down someone's house
you know your eyes are going to sting
she going to burn down someone's house just to dry her wings
Track Name: The Ballad Of Happy Friday And Tiger Woods (live)
Out past Wardenshill, past Guy's Run Armory
where you can shoot guns all the live long day
there's a spot where Tiger Woods and his love Happy Friday
would hide from the orderlies sneaking away
They would roll on the grass in the bosom of ecstasy
trample the green, they would swallow the tees
They showed no discretion nor thought for their families
freed by a passion, they did as they pleased.
His body was perfect
His body was perfect
the strong and the terrible, young Tiger Woods

And Happy was happiest with eyes clamped shut
to keep out the coldness of voices with pills
to keep out the sight of heads stapled tight
and smiles that said, "We know you can do it"
to pry her eyes open with blinding sunlight
to steal her away from her sentient lover

Whose body was perfect
Whose body was perfect
the strong and the terrible, young Tiger Woods

If Happy don't move, we would shout then and shake her
If Happy won't eat, we would turn up her tube
We begged and we pleaded, we teased and cajoled her
But Happy had no plans to ever be moved
from the place deep inside where she met with her future
She spent all her time in the arms of her lover

Whose body was perfect
Whose body was perfect
the strong and the terrible, young Tiger Woods

I was fine, I was happy, she thought once or twice
My husband, my grandkids, yes, all that was nice,
before they had taken my arms and legs from me
stolen so quickly and now they all beg me
to walk and to lift things; a fork to my mouth.
But my mouth's full of Tiger, a passion for Tiger

Whose body was perfect
Whose body was perfect
the strong and the terrible, young Tiger Woods...
Track Name: Walnut (Live Acoustic)
Now my heart is a small black hard
shrivelled rotten little walnut
Should I crack it and chop it
and roll it with nougat into a nut log?
Would you eat it?

Forgiveness, that's my deficiency
Kindness, sounds pretty good to me
Frustration, you wrote the recipe
Resentment, the special today

All my life I've been waiting to
break out of the kitchen into the ether
So take my hand pull me up, wake me up
out of this fever, into the dreamer

Forgiveness, that's my deficiency
Kindness, sounds pretty good to me
Frustration, you wrote the recipe
Resentment, the special today

Baby, Baby, Baby, Baby
You sure can dish it up
Baby, Baby, Baby, Baby
You sure can dish it up
Put it on the table, I'm hungry
What's for lunch?

Now my heart is a small black hard
shrivelled rotten little walnut
Should I crack it and chop it
and roll it with nougat into a nut log?
Would you eat it?

Forgiveness, that's my deficiency
Kindness, sounds pretty good to me
Frustration, you wrote the recipe
Resentment, the special today

Baby, Baby, Baby, Baby
You sure can dish it up
Baby, Baby, Baby, Baby
You sure can dish it up
Baby, Baby, Baby, Baby
You sure can dish it up
Put it on the table, I'm hungry
What's for lunch?
Put it on the table
I'm hungry, What's for lunch?
Track Name: Flight 609 (Live Acoustic)
As I fly away from you
my rocketship aims at the moon
My ears are popping
and my head's lost in a swoon
I'm so far above you
I look down at what I missed
I promised I would love you
but, it lasted as long as a kiss

Soon they'll come round with refreshments for all
and you'll be obscured by a cloud
I'm so far above you but I'm never going to fall
like I did when you whispered out loud,

"You're my angel, light and pure"
Baby want a whole lot more.
Baby want a whole lot more.

Seat me by a window now
I'll take an empty row
No stranger there to beg me
to tell everything I know
beneath me is a crazy quilt
of fields and plans and dreams
I can barely see your passion
in the flames along the seams

Soon they'll come round with refreshments for all
and you'll be exposed by a cloud
I'm so far above...

You've shrunk down to a tiny speck
right before my eyes
just a dozen miles between us
my giddiness on the rise
I'm so far above you
I look down at what I missed
I promised I would love you
but it lasted as long as a kiss

Soon they'll come round ...
Track Name: Everybody's Little Dream (Live)
lyrics by Penelope Houston / music by P. Houston and P. Johnson
everybody's little dream
tell me who to be
I can make you happy
everybody's little dream
I hear them calling my name
but I swear I'm not the same girl
everybody's little dream
keep trying and trying
but my pockets aren't lined with
everybody's little dream
I only wanted to bring you my best
and it's not for lack of trying
maybe my best is hidden away
awaiting it's precious time
everybody's little dream
dress me up in white
the sun is always shining
everybody's little dream
there must be somewhere to go
where nobody will know me
everybody's little dream
keep trying and trying
but my pockets aren't lined with
everybody's little dream
and like the tracks of my tears
I'm following the path of least resistance
when you demanded to see my hands
you took away my second chance
and I'll never
and I'll never
and I'll never stand up to
everybody's little dream
Track Name: New Day (Live)
I won't talk about it any more
I won't talk about it any more
I know you can bring me love
but I know your love's not enough
you spilled it and you left it on the floor
I won't care about you any more
never have to doubt you anymore
even as I stand behind you
all the sunlight I deprive you
in your weakness do you love me more?
if that's the sun I'm trading mine in
a simple lie
you promised to bring me the moon
it's all the same I'm waiting for my new day
I won't talk about it any more
I won't have to shout it any more
all the princes and their fathers
rush away like dirty waters
through the drainpipes you can hear them roar
and all at once the sun is shining
and my tears are pearls a-rolling away
like a jewel I turn and greet the new day
all at once the sun is shining
and my tears are pearls a-rolling away
like a jewel I turn and greet the new day
Track Name: Hundertwasser 567 (Live)
A man stood by the slaughteryard
his eyes were blue and cold
he watched his fortune all lined up
on trays of steel and gold
A smiling wire fence like teeth
point up to heaven's door
The yard was red with blood that stained
and washed the killing floor
washed the killing floor
washed the killing floor
and gold was falling down before his eyes
gold was all he saw
numbers filled his head and burned his mind
and gold was falling down he could not lift his lips and call
he could not lift his lips and drink the sky
could not lift his lips and drink the sky
Three pairs of eyes were blinking
on the face of children grown
counting countless sheep
he calls his own, he calls his own
they stunk even in icey silver rooms
they stunk of death
a little piece of meat was on his breath, (lay down he said)
upon the killing floor
upon the killing floor
he said, lay down upon the floor
upon the killing floor
and gold was falling down before his eyes...
The yard was bloody red
and though he never stepped inside
it stuck upon his shoes, his clothes
his fingernails, his hide
His ears filled with a hum of commerce
and of gasping breath
"surrender unto me" was all he said (was all he said)
"surrender unto me" was all he said
upon the killing floor
upon the killing floor
he said, lay down upon the floor
upon the killing floor
and gold was falling down before his eyes...