A Miners' Town

by Marc Silver

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about

A Miners' Town is a collection of semi-fictional stories. Inspired by the sights, sounds, and testimonials of people who have been affected by the shale mining (extraction) industries, I began researching the history of mining, and shale mining practices. I also mixed in stories relating struggles of equal rights, coming out, and religious persecution of LGBTQ by religious leaders. The messages are subtle at times, direct at others, but all come from hours of introspection, research, and personal experiences. The sounds and message may be dark, but listen for the glimmers of hope too.

This is my 5th record since 2007, and I am delighted to have worked with Andrew Lipke, and a cast of great musicians to help realize the vision in these songs. I could NOT have done it without the patient guidance, persistence, and creativity of all of the musicians involved. Big thanks to all!

More coming soon! CD is available on iTunes May 7th, from Marc as soon April 15th, and especially at the CD release show on June 14th.

credits

released June 14, 2013

All songs written by Marc Silver
Produced by Andrew Lipke
Engineered by John O. Senior (special thanks to Rob Hyman)
Marc Silver - Acoustic Guitar/Vocals
Michael Hlatky - Upright Bass/Vocals
Brad Hinton - Electric Guitar/Lap Steel/Vocals
Chris Giraldi - Drums
Ryan Williams - Vocals
Meg Moyer-Herrmann - Vocal
Andrew Lipke - Keys/Percussion

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about

Marc Silver Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

“Marc Silver is living proof that singer/songwriters don’t need to shout outrageously shocking lyrical lines in order to attract well-deserved attention…His confessional songs draw you in, rather than drag you along… a truly noteworthy artist that walks quietly, but carries a big gift.” Dan MacIntosh, [Spin]

Marc works as a solo artist, and with his Bluegrass/Americana Band The Stonethrowers.
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Track Name: A Miners' Town
A Miners’ Town

Hail, hail! the gang is all here
Riding into town with their barrels in air
Hide your women scuttle to get all the children inside
They’re set to spill someone’s blood for sure tonight

A miners’ town is a harbor of souls
Where the railroads cross and the black gold flows
Those with God, claim to hold the keys to the mountain on high
Every barrel is a tomb and another town left to die

Abandoned homes line the town’s main street
Bullets hit the windows and they shatter with a scream
‘Tween the alleys, old homes crackle in the smoldering fires
Burning all the things that were made from love inside

Smoke plumes rise in the scuffle of night
Winding their way over weed-choked fields
The townsfolk there, gather enraged at the end of their wits
Taking aim at the coal men chasing their blood earned yields

Here we are on new frontier
Falling back on wild-west years
Dreams laid out on our horizons
Rise and fall with profiteers

Red moon arise on the river tonight
Casting a ray on the crimson tide
The howling winds carry the calls of the harrowing cries
Another bloody battle in a miners’ town left to die
Track Name: The Great Machine
How many times are we willing to flee from here
Build a little home so we don’t have to ramble in fear
The sound and fury came storming shortly
the great machine soon came

When my love and I were young we left town to farm the field
Little did we know that the land we planted concealed
The earthly assets, and grave romances
That’d compromise our yield

With our child on the way nothings easy so we vowed to stay
We were desperate we were young
Determined and resolved to make it, we prayed
But soon the valley was torn and tallied
Our wells turned foul and fumed

The company carried on in spite of all the claims we made
w/unregulated hand, no rule of law restrained them, they stayed
Our darkest hour soon came to flower our child lived just for days

When we’re shadowed by the man with the power to shroud our fears
We’re left out on our own with our signs and slogans, our zeal
The righteous wicked empower the tenets
That’ll justify their deal
Track Name: All We Are (Explicit Lyric Content)
All We Are

You better work your shit out now
‘Cause you’re drifting for a fall
Tall are tales surrounding swallow your heart
Many’ve tried and failed before
To be cleansed of whom they are
Daggers and jagged arrows keep them at guard

Oh daughter won’t you lay your ammo down
Before our bonds have crumbled to the ground

You know it wasn’t long ago father sowed his fertile seed
Bonded and sealed in labor a child conceived
Like our mothers all before,
We find our place within this world
Realized that only innocence is adored

Now we find ourselves left all alone
Longing for a love that calls us home

I am my father’s child though I dare to be defined
I walk a stray and narrow delicate line
All our lives we fight so hard all these wars within our hearts
Even with good intention life is still art

All we are is all we ever are
It’s hard to race these demons in our hearts
All we are is all we ever are
All we are is all we are so far
Track Name: Fools and Foul
Broke down blood their hands
They got a one-way ticket to hell
There’s nobody there who could tend to the people who fell
It’s an old wives’ tale often told of a mining cartel

The blood in the sands was spilled on demand
By the guile of the entrepreneur
Those who worked in the mines suffered early demise
So took arms to go settle the score
But the lords craved more silver and ore
Set ablaze into war

The towns turned black
Ain’t nothing left there that ain’t burned
The vultures overhead circled over the dead
To descend on the corpses still warm
It was a week, no more, men saddled in force
To get back at their chore

Spite the fire and flood the guns and the blood
The desperate fled to the mines
With the brothels in bloom and flowing saloons
A slave force was full in no time
Their suffering souls, grew callous and cold
As the story unfolds

The black day came the towering inferno would fall
The great depression took hold and wouldn’t let go
Many years flew by without hope
Now ghosts and graves are all that remain
Of a town that once raged
Track Name: New Rising Sun
It’s a new rising sun, a new rising sun
Gonna be a brand new day when the long night has gone

With the sun shining warm on the first day of spring
She walked through the door demanded with a scream
Get on the floor, no one will be hurt here today

She moved to the vault gave the clerk a chilling glare
Pointing and shouting shot a warning in the air, said
Take this sack, fill it till there’s room for no more

Refrain:
Her children were suffering she ain’t got no food
Her man drowns in sorrow and booze
Oh the chances she’ll take as she’s falling from grace
She can’t seem to earn a fair wage

Consumption in the mines, would kill in three years time
Broken by hard labor her man lost his pride
Till he’d reside, to closin’ out the barroom each night

Well his drinking took hold he turned violent he got bold
Lost all his wages to the gambler in his soul
It’s hard you know, to live your life without a shadow

When your children are suffering and you ain’t got no food
Your man drowns in sorrows and booze
Oh the chances you’ll take as you’re falling from grace
And you can’t seem to earn a fair wage
Track Name: In Colorado
When he left his home he was seventeen
His hair grew down his back
A runaway with nothing but big dream
Headed west about a thousand miles blowing smoke out on the wind,
With visions of the “me” he might soon be

In his heart he held his secrets close as a shadow
Weighed him down and brought him to his knees
Entangled in a viscid cycle his tongue tied like a noose
Left him hanging silently in need

Oh, oh, the nights grew cold
In Colorado

In the night he’d drown in fear and lie in bed awake
Carried off in fervid fantasies
The fever’d grown for so many a year, with vice he’d drown his pain
But the wars within, they battled, lord they’d rage

The beast it seemed was all consuming there was just one out
Cast his secret sorrows on the wind
He fought the truth to bitter end, but now he’d come of age
The soul of man refuses to be caged

Oh, oh, the nights grew cold
In Colorado
Track Name: Priest
Saw a priest in the back of a cab
Staring out from his window
While glaring in the gaze of his eyes
We met each other soul to soul

Oh, oh, the devils got a hold of me
Oh , oh, he ain’t ever gonna let me be

Time is a crawl as we pass
He’s a devil in a long black dress
Striking fear in my heart and my mind
My innocence in full undress

Oh, oh, the devils got ahold of me
Oh , oh, he ain’t ever gonna let me be

No shelter for a moth in flame
When you’re torn between love and faith
When the truth in your heart is betrayed
All Your praying will not ease your pain

Oh, oh, the devils got ahold of me
Oh , oh, he ain’t ever gonna let me be
Track Name: Ghosts and Graves
Broke down blood their hands Ghosts & Graves
They got a one-way ticket to hell
There’s nobody there who could tend to the people who fell
It’s an old wives’ tale often told of a mining cartel

The blood in the sands was spilled on demand
By the guile of the entrepreneur
Those who worked in the mines suffered early demise
So took arms to go settle the score
But the lords craved more silver and ore
Set ablaze into war

The towns turned black
Ain’t nothing left there that ain’t burned
The vultures overhead circled over the dead
To descend on the corpses still warm
It was a week, no more, men saddled in force
To get back at their chore

Spite the fire and flood the guns and the blood
The desperate fled to the mines
With the brothels in bloom and flowing saloons
A slave force was full in no time
Their suffering souls, grew callous and cold
As the story unfolds

The black day came the towering inferno would fall
The great depression took hold and wouldn’t let go
Many years flew by without hope
Now ghosts and graves are all that remain
Of a town that once raged
Track Name: No Gates Shall Withhold Him
Come with me now while the moon is ascending
And shadows lay long in the valley below
We’ll hear the bird songs ‘neath the trees in the meadow
Then lay there till dawn as the wind softly flows

Chorus

I’d have it be told no gates shall withhold him
For laws that a man has claimed of the lord
Songs of the heart are free from the rulings
Of those who’r inclined to lead with the sword

Love is a world not bound by a jury
No mortal soul has the will to withstand
A heart becomes young and light in it’s journey
And heaven extends a welcoming hand

I’d have it be told no gates shall withhold him
For laws that a man has claimed of the lord
Songs of the heart are free from the rulings
Of those who’r inclined to lead with the sword
Track Name: All We Are - Clean Version
All We Are

You better work it all out now
‘Cause you’re drifting for a fall
Tall are tales surrounding swallow your heart
Many’ve tried and failed before
To be cleansed of whom they are
Daggers and jagged arrows keep them at guard

Oh daughter won’t you lay your ammo down
Before our bonds have crumbled to the ground

You know it wasn’t long ago father sowed his fertile seed
Bonded and sealed in labor a child conceived
Like our mothers all before,
We find our place within this world
Realized that only innocence is adored

Now we find ourselves left all alone
Longing for a love that calls us home

I am my father’s child though I dare to be defined
I walk a stray and narrow delicate line
All our lives we fight so hard all these wars within our hearts
Even with good intention life is still art

All we are is all we ever are
It’s hard to race these demons in our hearts
All we are is all we ever are
All we are is all we are so far