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.​.​.​And So To Bedlam (album)

by Jennifer Bell and Wilson Walker

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  • Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    Presented in a Digipak, containing full lyric booklet insert, with cover illustration by Jennifer Bell.

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1.
Season of icefall My heart is frozen over. Snow courts and woos us all, But winter’s my lover. White-out around me, There’s nothing in the mirror; See what you want to see Winter’s my lover. You thought you’d mapped me, But the tracks are going nowhere; Strange and mysteriously Winter’s my lover. Perfect the silence Encasing me forever, No movement there or thence; Winter’s my lover. No pain, no bloodstains, My wounds are healing over, Ice crystals in my veins; Winter’s my lover. All things conspire And you will not discover The stillness I desire; The touch of a frozen fire That’s turning me to quicksilver - Winter’s my lover.
2.
I watched you then Entranced, the notes That you played Were my heart and soul In a mirror... How should I then discern Which was man or muse? All was Music, song and singer. And I’m painting the Colours of harmony, And I think this is where I belong. For sometimes the music of love Lives on, Even after the singers have gone. And you took the tune at first, And I played the ground And my heart was Bursting within me And all the time I could hear The music of heaven Falling softly around me. When the music plays My heart is moved and stirred With sweet intentions. Let me trace the streams of harmony To the source of love’s invention. And I’m painting… Now we play no more, For the strings are worn, But the music still sounds sweetly, And the lovers’ airs will not fade away Till our breath gives out - Completely. And I’m painting…
3.
This is my Wedding Day, And we are having such fun, I found a chest in the attic, Up in the tower at Exton. You said, “Let us play hide and seek” We all gladly agreed, But I’ve been hiding for hours, And no-one is coming to find me. Kisses or curses, just look for me now, Oh the Bough of the Mistletoe, How shall I keep all my wedding vows? I heard voices not far away, Calling, “Oh where can she be?” It will be such a surprise when they Open the chest and they find me. Later, I heard my love whisper “I know you’re hiding in there, But I married you for your money And you can stay Locked up for ever.” Kisses or curses, just look at me now, Oh the Bough of the Mistletoe, How shall I keep all my wedding vows? My silver dress is now tarnished, My beauty is over and done, My life has long been extinguished Locked in this coffin at Exton. Years came and went as I waited, Time oh so silently passed, Then one day, when all was forgotten My love came to me at last… Kisses or curses… He said, lifting the lid to see me “Such a shame, your beauty is dead, But I have your house and your land And today I have married again” He said. Then as he turned away laughing By mischance, by some Strange endeavour He fell, Down, Into my arms… And the lid closed, And we are together - Kisses and curses, just look at us now Oh the Bough of the Mistletoe, Now I can keep all my wedding vows Kisses and curses, just look at me now… I may be withered and dead, But welcome at last to our wedding bed.
4.
High Degree 02:47
In winter night and candlelight This world is shrivelled small, Yet warmth and cheer we manage here Good health to people all. And hearts, even mine, Are filled with joy and magnanimity And heaven above knows He that I love And hold in high degree. Then spring discerns The year that turns And grey skies fade to blue, The sleeping seeds in Hastening need Burst forth to drink the dew. And here with delight, The pale spring light Clothes all in radiancy For heaven above knows He that I love And hold in high degree. And slow but sure, the cold of yore Makes way for summer sun. And we will walk and fondly talk Of how the year does run. Then cool in the shade, Sweet love be made And we shall merry be For heaven above knows He that I love And hold in high degree. Then we behold the purer gold Of autumn’s harvest fields, The gleaming hours, The fruit and flowers Swell bounteous to the yield. And passing our days In honeyed haze We shall true lovers be, And heaven above knows He that I love And hold in high degree.
5.
I turned and saw her standing there With sunlight woven in her hair, Tracing gold around her face so fair. And I loved her even more This love will never be forgot For streams of sunlight glow in me And flow like molten gold In my heart. She said no word, And yet her look said all Her eyes were so beautiful, My love, will you remember me at all? And I loved her… The tall trees whispered To the morning mist, But answer came ‘This love will be not blessed, But torn apart and set adrift.’ And I loved her… No song I’ve heard can Truly tell the pain I knew full well that I’d not return; But love reminds me once again. That I love her… In the evening of my life I see the past As one true light that keeps me From the dark, This memory holds me fast - I turn and see her standing there With sunlight woven in her hair Tracing gold around her face so fair. And I love her even more This love will never be forgot For streams of sunlight glow in me And flow like molten gold In my heart.
6.
Down in Ingoldmells the demons were Raising hell, all in malice unconfined - Pranks, provocations, and Bile and belligerence, Wickedness to mastermind ‘O let us go into the world And tease and torment human kind’ And all the demons in Lincolnshire Were of one evil mind. And all… And they raised a mighty wind that Blew them in from The Lincolnshire coast, And the demons were borne Upon the storm And where they went they Caused a fuss The milk to sour, and the plough to rust And all the demons in Lincolnshire Would see who could Frighten the most. And all… And…the wind to Lincoln Was wild and loud And it howled and seethed and Shrieked and roared, And one little devil tumbled Out of the thunder Through Lincoln’s new Cathedral door. ‘What's this’ he thought ‘I’ll have some sport And this diversion I shall enjoy… The angels singing in The heavenly choir I shall pester and annoy.’ The angels… And the priest and people there Praising God Were troubled in their souls And they prayed and called Upon the Lord To come and save them, To make them brave and Deliver them from this Fiend from hell And all the people in Lincoln cathedral Cried ‘Heaven help us all.’ And all… Then the imp prised the stone eyes From a gargoyle’s head, And its teeth and bits of fingers – Said he; “I need these stones For my sport and fun, Old friend I need them More than thee”. And he threw them at the angel choir With evil glee and malevolence And all the angels in the Choir were struck By his impertinence. And all… Then round the walls and Round the towers The angels hunted him down And the priest and people Prayed with groans That angelic might should Defeat the sprite And make him wish he’d Never left home Then all the angels in the Heavenly choir Caught the imp - And they turned him to stone. Hurrah! Then all… And… Centuries may have passed him by, But the imp’s still there In stone to see, And priest and people And all you folk Can live in Lincoln peacefully. So seek God’s face and heaven’s grace And study your theology And with all the people In Lincoln cathedral Sing “Laudate angeli”. And with all… Amen
7.
And so to Bedlam welcome all And let us a-dancing go With arms akimbo And hair a-flying And see the ladies swoon away At this small affray I will tell your fortune dear, For nothing, I like your ribbons Here be dreams my lovelies Look at all the fancies I have In this tattered pocket, So pretty, I’ll spill them to view, See what they show, So behold these fine knacks See what visions they Conjure up for you And look closely; and listen, A word in your ear, You’ll end up here… Fine lady, don’t you look so wan, You see, there is little need to be afeared, My mind is clear, Just coloured up with too much life, And a trifle Wayward, after all We are very alike it seems And here be dreams… And so to Bedlam we repair When all of the lovelies have Gone back to town We hunker down And we’re happy for another day Till fine ladies come by To view our madnesses For we are the crazy ones. Entertained, they shriek and faint To show us how they must be sane… Who is sane in Bedlam?
8.
There’s a man I know whose eyes are On the far horizon, His feet upon the open road, When he hears the mountains beckon. All he needs for comfort Is the warmth of sun on stone, And the wind from the moor delights The marrow of his bones. And the call of the wild gets louder As the man I know gets older, Till the longing for the Never-ending road Is all he knows. There’s a man I know who hears the Music of the wilderness. It sings sweetly to him, And it fills his heart with gentleness. Underneath the stars he lies and Sleepwalks through his dreams, And moonshine lights his ways and Watches over him. And the call of the wild... There’s a man I know who Walks down roads Where I will never go. Cloud and mountain speak to him In words that I will never know. Even when he’s home he’s far away Too far to find. He’s in another world And I am left behind… And the call of the wild…
9.
This is where all the rainbows end, It’s the graveyard of our dreams, Where the watercolours fade To shades of grey. Here is the field of all the slain, Where we watched our future die; Where it lost its fight for life And bled away. I will not forget, But I will not remain. Time has closed a door; I won’t open it again. Beauty doesn’t last, Life is full of pain; Still I’m looking for a living fire, Not ashes in the rain. I will not stay to fall and drown In the many pools of tears, Or be swept away by Streams of bitterness. Once we were confident and sure We were going to change the world, Now there’s nothing here for me But emptiness I will not forget… We are the ghosts of things gone by; We’ve been trapped in memories, We’ve been haunting, and been Haunted by this place. I’m here to say one last goodbye, Then I’m going to walk away I have nothing left to lose But these my chains. I will not forget…
10.
Oh Boy 03:27
(Girl) When we were young You picked on me You pulled my hair in history You threw my shoes into a tree, but Oh boy, just look at you now, Wow! Oh boy, just look at you now. You were the snot-nosed kid From down the street With spots and scurf and 2 left feet Who tried to give me worms to eat But oh boy, just look at you now, Wow! Oh boy, just look at you now. Can I hold your hand? Can I talk to you? Can I look into your eyes And drown there too? And I can’t stop thinking ‘Bout you anyhow, Oh boy, just look at you now, Wow! Oh boy, just look at you now. I’d have never thought You’d turn out like this With eyes that smile And a mouth to kiss Evolution just made a leap I guess Oh boy, just look at you now Wow! Oh boy, just look at you now. I’d have walked a mile To avoid you then You were a pain in the neck Now I’m thinking again If I walked out now t would be insane Oh boy, just look at you now, Wow! Oh boy, just look at you now. Can I hold… (Boy) You were asking for trouble And that’s what you got. But in secret I was smitten and I Liked you a lot, And boys crave attention if they Think a girl’s hot But oh boy, just look at you now Wow, oh boy, just look at you now! You were easy to tease and Temptation was strong Sitting next to me with your Hair that long And I’ll kiss you if you want - If you’ll shut up with the song Oh boy, just look at you now, Wow, oh boy, just look at you now. Can I hold your hand? Can I talk to you? Can I look into your eyes And drown there too? I can’t stop thinking ‘Bout you anyhow, Oh boy, just look at us now, Wow! Oh boy, just look at us now.
11.
Farewell to Boston and our home Farewell to all we now hold dear Yet safe in God’s hands we can say Farewell to tribulations here. There is a place where we can dwell In freedom though our trials be great We’ll leave this plot of ill-content For the Promised Land Where God awaits. So come with us, O pure of heart Freedom of worship is our cry And God will bless The children of the fathers In the new land, In the new land by and by. And cross the water we must go Through tempest, storm And flood and fright ‘Gainst mortal death we have no fear Secure in the hope of eternal life. As Pilgrims we will mercy find Though our faith be as a grain of sand And God will wipe our tears away When we get to the Promised Land. So come with us… For we will not bow down and serve The false church in its Wayward ways The devil finds words For wilful tongues And leads the weaker souls astray And though we are but sinful men We keep God’s truth and righteousness And scorn your vain ungodly ways And go where our zeal for the Lord Will be blessed. So come with us… America is the soil for our seed; It will flourish, come what may And we will reap a harvest of Salvation at the end of days. So come with us…

about

Jennifer Bell is a songwriter heavily influenced by traditional folk songs and early music. Her melodies are very singable and the lyrics intelligent and imaginative, sometimes with a macabre twist…
Now in a performing and recording partnership with Wilson Walker, who adds some very creative fiddle harmonies, this is their first CD as a duo.

credits

released July 26, 2018

All songs written by Jennifer Bell

Arranged and performed by
Jennifer Bell, lute and 12-string guitar
Wilson Walker, fiddle

Recorded and produced by Roger Wilson

Thanks to
Neil Rabjohn for percussion
David Jones for photography

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about

Jennifer Bell and Wilson Walker Nottingham, UK

Jenny was in the short-lived '80’s folk band ‘Sherwood Rise’ that made the Robin Hood-themed LP ‘From the Wood’. She now performs solo at folk clubs and festivals as well as with Wil as a duo. Wil plays and dances with Dolphin Morris, and plays fiddle with Whip The Cat Rapper, Bellows, Scratchitt & Pluckitt ceilidh band and local singing combo Higgs Bo’sun ... more

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