High Top Mountain

by Sturgill Simpson

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    Sturgill Simpson's authenticity stands out like an island of hope in a sea of tacky. Pure and uncompromising, devoid of gloss and fakery. High Top Mountain’s dozen instant classics evoke the sound of timeless country in its many guises and brings back the lyrical forthrightness and depth that permeated the music Simpson absorbed during his Kentucky childhood. Bonafide mountain hillbilly soul, as pure as you are going to find anywhere.
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1.
Well that label man said son now can you sing a little bit more clear Your voice might be too genuine and your song's a little too sincere Can you sing a little more about outlaws and the way things used to be He told me you just worry about writing them songs leaving everything else to me Daddy was a Highwayman but he never wrote any old country songs Papaw never stayed out raising hell til the break of dawn But he raised a proud coal miners daughter and I'm proud to be her son She told me boy I don't care if you hit it big, cause you’re already #1 That's the way it goes in this day & age You ain't gotta read between the lines you just gotta turn the page Well the most outlaw thing that I've ever done was give a good woman a ring But that's the way it goes, life ain't fair and the world is mean Well I still got the wife and the dog but I swapped the truck out for a van Gonna hit the road find the end of that long white line in the promise land Won’t hear my song on the radio cause that new sounds all the rage But you can always find me in a smokey bar with bad sound and a dim lit stage
2.
Well they say you live & learn but it really seems more to me Like all along I've been learning how to live Well for years I been drifting like a boat lost out at sea I've been out walking them ties on the railroad of sin Looking back on my life now at some of the things I done Makes me wanna hang my head in shame I was a no good, no account, low down heartbreaker On that railroad of sin I was a highballing train I'm just a poor boy had to beg, steal, & borrow Just a leaf blowing lonesome in the wind I'm just a hitchhiker on that old highway of sorrow Just a highballing train on that railroad of sin Well you won't feel it and you won't hear it coming Cause when she's rolling slow it don't make a sound But I got that throttle to ten on the railroad of sin I'm coming off of the rails and I can't slow it down
3.
They say that looks can be deceiving and there's been rumors going round One look at me's the same thing as believing everything you've heard without hearing a sound So if my eyes remind you of water in a well It's because your heart is the stone I know sometimes it can seem like my mind belongs to a child that's grown But somewhere between you and me I've lost my way and I've been trying to get home Trying like hell but it's too soon to tell If our love has all dried up like water in a well Lord knows I've tried to move on and get you out of my mind You find your way in to all of my songs Every memory I manage to find Someday if I'm standing on some big old stage And you're down in the crowd Trying to tell your friends I used to know him when But in your heart you'll know it ain't true somehow Trying like hell but it's too soon to tell If our love has all dried up like water in a well I know you see what it's doing to me I'm up here playing my part in this nobody town
4.
You could have told me you didn't care about me You could have told me you was the cheating kind I'd be out on the town running around seeing what else I could find Instead of sitting here without you and with you on my mind I'm all alone in the night and I know you ain't coming back to me There's a moon over me so bright It lights up my sorrow for everyone to see You could have told me you didn't care about me You could have told me you was the cheating kind I'd be out on the town running around seeing what else I could find Instead of sitting here without you and with you on my mind Don't have to tell nobody how I'm feeling Don't have to tell nobody how I cry It's written on my face cause' I know you're out there stealing All them sweet, sweet kisses from all them other guys
5.
The Storm 04:02
Please don't think me a lazy man Because I've been sitting around all day with the blues I know how it looks but don't misunderstand It's just that I can tell a storm's about to brew Cause there's thunder inside my mind There's lightning behind these eyes There's a lull and the wind is dying down Don't let it fool you the storm ain't done Flood waters rolling in and my hearts gonna drown Our love wilted like a flower that ain't got enough sun Well the thunder in my head might go away And the river of pain will flow back to the sea If you would only come back home to stay It'd bring a stop to the rain and happiness to me Well if you would just come back I'd be so grateful And the storm would be over The world wouldn't seem so mean and hateful And I'd lay you down on a bed of yellow clover
6.
Well, I been spending all my money on weed n' pills Trying to write a song that'll pay the bills But it ain't came yet so I guess I'll have to rob a bank I guess it could be worse it ain't that bad At least I ain't sitting in old Baghdad in the middle of the hot damn desert sitting in a tank Every time the wife talks a baby gets mentioned But I'm so broke I can't pay attention Lord how it tears me up to see her cry So I been spending all my nights on the internet looking for a clue but ain't found one yet just a bunch of Mopars, guitars, & other stuff I can't buy Well now Lord if you can hear me won't you throw a damn dog a bone Cause if the Devil shows up with a better deal this old soul's going down I sing 'em real pretty I sing 'em real sad All the people in the crowd say he ain't half bad They call me King Turd up here on Shit Mountain but if you want it you can have the crown Been sitting on my ass like a bump on a log Watching Andy and ol' Boss Hog Guess I ought to get up and go find a job Instead of sitting on the couch trying to find the next line I'm sure there's gotta be a better use of my time Like figuring out which one of these banks I'm gonna go rob Well the name of the game is hurry up and wait but that ain't putting no food on my plate or gas in my car and I drive a Bronco So Lord if I could just get me a record deal I might not have to worry about my next meal but I'll still be trying to figure out what the hell rhymes with Bronco
7.
They say that life can decide in the blink of eye if our silly little dreams will ever come true But the dreams in my mind all go by so slow What the hell else can I do I wanna slow it all down and watch it roll by See where the sweet melody falls I wanna roll off the tempo, lay back and get high Cause it's only time and time after all I've grown tired of cold places and the same old cold faces and I'm tired of the smoke they all blow in my eyes I'm sick of the banging, can't take no more clanging I'm tired of yelling over top that back line They say time takes care of itself It gets by without no help at all Like a jar of sand that sits on the shelf It's only time and time after all
8.
Hero 04:02
Decided to write a song for my hero Considering he's done so much for me He's the one that pulled me up when I fell down so low He's the one that led me through the darkness when I could not see Never met a man more gentle or any humbler Never once heard him raise his voice or saw him mad But I watched him break his back on coal and lumber To give her everything she never had Cause when it all comes down to zero There's nothing more this life could ever give And I know I'll never find another hero Not another one like him Born on a summer day in some dark holler Way back in the hills of Perry County Well he grew up poor and he never saw a dollar But a dollar ain't no good in a coal camp anyway Cause when it all comes down to zero There's nothing more this life could ever give And I know I'll never find another hero Not another one like him And if I'm half the man he is when I die I don't know if I could ask for too much more He taught me you only need one hand to count your real friends in this life But if you find true love you better take both arms and hold on til your sore
9.
Some Days 03:30
I'm getting pretty tired of the state things are in Sometimes I feel like cutting a vein, just watching it bleed I'm tired of laying it down, getting nothing on the other end and people only wanting to be your friend when you got something they need Well I'm getting pretty tired of being treated like competition When the only one that can hold me down is inside my head Whats a honky gotta do around here to get a little recognition Start to think I might be worth more to everybody if I was dead I'm getting pretty tired sitting around and wasting time I'm tired of taking blame when I ain't done nothing wrong I'm tired of other people trying to take what's mine and I'm tired of y'all playing dress up and trying to sing them old country songs Well some days you kill it and some days you just choke Some days you blast off and some days you just smoke Well now maybe I do and maybe I don't Everybody says they'll be there but in the end y'all know they won't
10.
Many a man down in these here hills made a living off that old black gold Now there ain't nothing but welfare and pills and the wind never felt so cold I'll be one of the first in a long long line not to go down from that old black lung My death will be slower than the rest of my kind And my life will be sadder than the songs they all sung Old King Coal what are we gonna do when the mountains are gone and so are you They come from the city to lend a hand carrying signs saying, Shut the mines down We ain't looking for pity and you don't understand So go back to your city now cause this ain't your town My Great Grandfather spent his days in a coal mine and his nights on the porch in a chair Now he's in heaven and down here in hell the rivers run muddy and the mountains are bare
11.
Poor Rambler 03:45
Come and gather around me good people My life I must reveal Well tomorrow might have been different and I know how my darling ought to feel Well that last time I saw my woman She had a wine glass in her hand She was drinking down her troubles With a low down sorry man Well I wrote my Momma a letter And I told her I was in jail Well she wrote me back in a hurry Saying honey I'm gonna come and throw your bail Well I'm a laying around in this old jail house Forty dollars will pay my fine Pretty women swarming all around me Marijuana has destroyed my mind Give me cornbread when I'm hungry Corn whiskey when I'm dry Pretty women swarming all around me Sweet Heaven when I die Well my Daddy taught me plenty And my Momma she taught me more She said if I didn't quit my rowdy ways I'd have trouble knocking at my door When my Earthly trials are over Throw my cold dead body in the sea Tell that false hearted lover of mine That the whales are gonna fuss over me Give me cornbread when I'm hungry Corn whiskey when I'm dry Pretty women swarming all around me Sweet Heaven when I die
12.
I'd have to be crazy to stop all my singing and never play music again You'd call me a fool if I grabbed up my top hat and ran out to flag down the wind I'd have to be weird to grow me a beard just to see what the rednecks would do I'd have to be crazy plum out of my mind to fall out of love with you You know I've done weird things, told people I've heard things When silence was all in abounds Been days when it pleased me to crawl on my knees following ants as they crawled across the ground Been insane on a train but I'm still me again and the place where I hold you is true But I'd have to be crazy, plum out of my mind To fall out of love with you You know I don't intend to But should there come a day when I say that I don't love you You can lock me away Well it sure would be dingy to live in an envelope in a world waiting along for a stamp You'd swear I was loco to rub for a genie while burning my hand on a lamp I may not be normal but nobody is so I'd like to say before I'm through I'd have to be crazy, plum out of my mind to fall out of love with you

credits

released June 11, 2013

MUSICIANS

Sturgill Simpson - vocals, acoustic guitar, Telecaster
Hargus "Pig" Robbins - piano
Chris Powell - drums
Robby Turner - steel guitar, bass (tracks 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 10)
Brian "Freedom Eagle Bear" Allen - bass (tracks 4, 6, 9, 11, 12)
Bobby "Diamond Bob" Emmett - organ, Mellotron
Leroy Powell - steel guitar (tracks 6, 9), backing vocals (track 6)
Dave Cobb - 12 string electric guitar (track 7)

Produced by Dave Cobb
Engineered by Vance Powell
Assistant Engineered by Jason Mott
Mixed by Vance Powell at Sputnik Sound - Nashville, TN
Mastering by Richard Dodd
Songs 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 10, 11, 12 recorded at FALLING ROCK - Nashville, TN
(Songs #6 & #9 recorded at HILLBILLY CENTRAL - Nashville, TN)

Mgmt: M. Dottore Management (madmanager.com)
Cover art by Pastor Jim Harris
Photography by Melissa Madison Fuller
Package Design by Kimberly Levitan

2013 High Top Mountain Records. Marketed and Distributed by Thirty Tigers/RED. All Rights Reserved.

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