Ragamuffin

by Melanie

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about

Matching things.

When I was little it was very important to my mother, and to other mothers I think, for everything to match. If you had a dress with coral and teal stripes going through it (which I had) on a background of white, not refrigerator white, but that perfect creamy color white, I was not to wear bright white socks or coral and teal stripes going the other way or (heaven forbid) polka dots. The hat, the purse had to pick up some of the color in the dress, perhaps a little bunch of flowers or ribbon. And of course the hat couldn't be refrigerator white. I, however, had an inclination for 'mismatch'. And as is inevitable, I grew up and had my way. I truly think I was the first ‘on purpose’ mismatched person.

No, but of course there were others rebelling, secretly or out loud; against their mothers wishes that everything match. Spring brings all of this to mind as now everything is unveiled and begins to show. Everything hidden, mismatched under sweaters and coats and jackets and vests now show, and guess what? It just doesn't matter!

My mother would say, “You look like a ragamuffin”. And I took a liking to the word. Years later I was in The Netherlands and my two daughters were very small.
A children's clothing line emerged - Oilily.

And nothing matched! There were flower print tunics with striped leggings and polka dot socks, all in most beautiful similar color threads or even different colors! You can mix unlikely colors if you do it artfully. And that is a lesson that I think would be presented at my writers retreat. Mixing colors! (More on that later).

Even before I found this company existed I tended to dress my two daughters like ragamuffins but Oilily made it much easier. They got pricier and pricier and then it became very trendy to dress your children in Oilily. By that time my daughters were grown and desiring I think, to present themselves like others, blending ~ the years of Esprit! And of course they had to have Cavaricci jeans.
The first to my recollection of stupidly expensive jeans.

Jeans, an American tradition had crossed the Atlantic, and came back to bite us. Mom Levi's? Oh please, no, no Wranglers. And mom, when you come to the PTA meetings couldn't you dress a little more like the other mothers? I tried a little but I could never pull it off. Sometimes in an interview they would ask, “ how do you define your style of dress? “ And I would answer ‘ragamuffin” or 'like a comfy couch with mismatched throw pillows and a red ottoman.” I'm convinced that red goes with everything, even orange. Sorry mom, ragamuffin it is, was, and most likely always will be.

So spring begins!
Let show your stripes, flowers and polka dots.
Even Jellybean colors and Yum Yum umbrellas!

And I'm turning into Dr Seuss
Can you stand it? The urge toward life, and at my age too…
;-)

credits

released July 28, 2016

All songs © Melanie
Rhythm guitar track and lead vocals: Melanie
Background vocals, guitar & all other various accompaniment: Beau Jarred Schekeryk

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about

Melanie Nashville, Tennessee

Pieces of a career, scattered by the winds of experience and assembled again by the force of love into the most personal and brilliant moments of her musical journey. Melanie is poised to enlighten new generations about what it means to sing with both passion and eloquence, to write at once with intelligence and emotion, and to inspire through song. Nobody does this better.
(Robert L. Doerschuk)
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Track Name: White Man Sings The Blues
WHITE MAN SINGS THE BLUES

I can't take no more, there ain't no use
Can't keep on doin' what it is you think I do
And the words that I've been listening to
Are as honest as a white man sounds when he sings the blues
I know we're through

Take me where the wild things grow
Where the truth is found 'cause its roots are down below
Where the system is a saviour’s song
Where I feel the rhythm but the tune is still unborn
I know it's one

String a feather on a silken twine
Weave the twine with the laurel leaves
Wring a river to make a wine
Brew the wine with the laurel to make a tea
Drink me

I can't take no more, there ain't no use
I can't keep on doin' what it is you think I do
And the words that I've been listening to
Are as honest as a white man sounds when he sings the blues
I know we're through

It’s like a white man singing the blues
Like a white man singing the blues
Track Name: Goodnighty
GOODNIGHTY

When will it be alright?
When’s it gonna be alrighty?
When will it be alright?
To be somebody nobody loves

Whomma I gonna kiss goodnight?
When I say goodnighty
Whomma I gonna kiss goodnight?
If I’m somebody nobody loves

To be somebody, somebody loves
To be somebody, somebody loves
To be somebody, somebody loves
To be somebody, somebody loves

Imma gonna be alright
Imma gonna light my lightie
Imma gonna be alright
I’ll be somebody, somebody loves

To be somebody, somebody loves
Track Name: Golden Chains
GOLDEN CHAINS

I'm leaving go and laying down them golden chains, old boy
My body’s getting back at me for dancing without joy
Those hand-me-downs were all I ever got to use
To keep me free of fear and tied to you
Those hand-me-downs were all I ever got to use
To keep me free of fear and tied to you

The very worst thing that I have ever done
Was deliberately lose something I worked for hard and won
Those hand-me-downs were just to cut and dry
To vindicate my life and damn the lie
Those hand-me-downs were all I ever got to use
To keep me free of fear, keep me living here
They keep me free of fear and tied to you

Tragedy, it has an ancient soul
Small time desperation is the only thing I know
Those hand-me-downs were meant to satisfy
To keep us free of fear and half-alive
Those hand-me-downs were all I ever got to use
To keep me free of fear, keep me living here
They keep me free of fear and tied to youSmall time desperation is the only thing I know
Those hand-me-downs were meant to satisfy
To keep us free of fear and half-alive
Those hand-me-downs were all I ever got to use
To keep me free of fear, keep me living here
They keep me free of fear and tied to you

Those hand-me-downs
Those hand-me-downs
Those hand-me-downs, dragging me around
Those hand-me-downs are dragging me down
Those hand-me-downs, dragging me around
Those hand-me-downs
Track Name: The First Thing I See
THE FIRST THING I SEE

The first thing I see
When I wake up to me
Is you

And it’s hard to believe
Or conceive
What I know to be true

Against all the odds
And although life’s a bitch
With a hole in my heart
Slight reality glitch

The first thing I see
When I wake up to me
Is you

The light in my window is on
Just in case you pass by
I remember you won’t
And forget there are good reasons why

There’s a little loose end
Where dreams don’t come true
Though I tied it in knots
And then hit undo

The first thing I see
When I wake up to me
Is you

Now I cry for you
And you cry for somebody else
Love’s a conundrum of passions
Heaven and Hell

All I’m trying to do
Is to live and let live
Get through this night
Forget and forgive

But the first thing I see
When I wake up to me
I cry when I do
‘Cause I know it’s not true
But the first thing I see
When I wake up to me
Is you
Track Name: Duck Bottom Boat
DUCK BOTTOM BOAT

I will sail on a duck bottom boat
Where the moon shall wane with the ebb and flow
The sun shall rise and that’s all I’ll know
And that’s all I’ll need to know
And that’s all I’ll need to know

I will fly to a distant star
On a silk and a glisten in a firefly jar
Life shall bloom and colours glow
And that’s all I’ll need to know
And that’s all I’ll need to know

Anything that soars
Anything that sings
Anything that flies
Anything with wings
I’ll take it in and I’ll let it go
And that’s all I’ll need to know
And that’s all I’ll need to know

I will sail on a duck bottom boat
Where the moon shall wane with the ebb and flow
The sun shall rise and that’s all I’ll know
And that’s all I’ll need to know
And that’s all I’ll need to know

I will sail on a duck bottom boat
I will fly to a distant star
I will sail on a duck bottom boat
With a silk and glisten and there you are
There you are

I will sail on a duck bottom boat
I will fly to a distant star
I will sail on a duck bottom boat
With a silk and glisten and there you are
There you are

With a silk and glisten and there you are
There you are
Track Name: A little after soon (Bodhe's song)
A LITTLE AFTER SOON

There’s a branch and there’s a tree
That goes throughout eternity
And a clock that will stand still for you
Play that song, that melody
The one where all mankind is free
In a world where everyone’s in tune
Someday noon
Me, me there
A little after soon