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The No​-​Hit Wonder

by Cory Branan

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released August 19, 2014


all rights reserved



Cory Branan Nashville, Tennessee

Throughout his decade-and-a-half-long career, Cory Branan has been too punk for country, too country for punk, too Memphis for Nashville, and probably a little too Cory Branan for anyone’s damn good.

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Track Name: You Make Me
Was a songbird nesting in the head of a scarecrow
Low and free, Woe is me
Now I’m happy as a bluebird in a bottle tree
Baby you make me
Baby you make me
Nature knows I’m prone to overanalyzing the roses
Ques que c’est, C’est La Vie
There’s just something ‘bout your loving’ let the bumble be
Baby you made me an escapee
When most of me was rusted shut
And love was left for deadbolted
You jiggled with the key
There’s a red door standing in a halo of kudzu
What to do with the mystery
Gon’ cakewalk on thru it to the jubilee
you make me
Baby you made me…
Track Name: The No Hit Wonder
Years of living blood to string
Years of living hand to mouth
Years just getting gig to gig
East to West, North to South
He could have been making a killing
Peddling the Dream
But if you found him at all you found him just scraping
A living blood to string
So sing a song for the no hit wonder
Though it isn’t one of his
He’d sing ‘Shovel me under
Boys, it is what it is’
He broke free from the way they raised him
He knows a heart is hell enough and never full
He never sang that music would save him
Knows never trust an evangelical
He’d say ‘You wanna know what true love feels like?
It’s the next best thing to death
Feels like after an elbowed windpipe
Just before the next breath”
So with your next breath sing a
Song for the no hit wonder...
But at night he can hear the fireworks
From his tunnel underground
And he’s carved himself a little crawlspace
Just to lay his body down
To fade out of sound
To the thunder under town
Sing a song for the no hit wonder...
Yes, I slipped and sipped astray
It only took one taste to see the way
Back to Tennessee to stay
Tennessee my darlin
When I go below the gloomy ground…
I don’t want no Beaujolais
Sake, Cider, Chardonnay
You keep Tequila far away
You know what i’m cravin
Ain’t Champagne all fine and chill
It’s not all rot-gut, shine, and swill
You ask me life’s a cask
Of bitter-sweet sour mash
When I go below the gloomy ground…
Track Name: The Only You
I hear you got another boy
I hear he looks a lot like me
This one come with some kinda guarantee?
I got me another girl
She looks like you- at 23
But while she sleeps i trace the places
Where your tattoos used to be
We don’t gotta lie
Have you ever known
Us to take the night
Lying down alone?
I don’t wanna pry
Just hoping you were home
Hoping this is still your phone
When I get lonely
Sure, she’ll do
But you’re the only you
We were never very smart
We were sticking to our guns
We knew added up, babe
We just knew we were the ones
Forever barely starts
And suddenly someone
Is saying all is said and done
When I get lonely...
I sprayed our names across the bridge
So the whole damn town would know
That bridge is gone, but some recall
That “What’s-his-face hearts So-n-so”
And so it goes
And when I get lonely...
Track Name: Sour Mash
The town i come from’s mostly sky
Even though the county’s dry
That didn’t stop the stream nearby
From giving us a daughter
She was born in a barrel of American oak
Made of sugar, maple, and charcoal smoke
She just goes to show your folks
What God can do with water
When I go below the gloomy ground
You better buy the room a round
Let her weep and lift a glass
Of bitter-sweet sour mash
Once when I was going through
Those same old famous same old blues
Tired of either crying to you
Or cussin up a quarrelin
Here’s to you
Missing you fierce
Track Name: C'mon Shadow
C’mon shadow
I know you remember feeling nine feet tall
But c’mon shadow
Did you forget the times she had me climbing all the walls
C’mon shadow
Wander with me yonder ways a spell
C’mon shadow
Tonight i’d rather not be by myself
She made it clear that we’re not welcome
What are we waiting for aw hell
C’mon shadow
Must you lag so far behind each step we take
C’mon shadow
It does no good to drag your heels when passing by her place
C’mon Shadow…
I know you don’t believe it’s true but please pretend
Because it looks like it’s just you and me again
C’mon Shadow
Don’t exaggerate the tragic shape we’re in
C’mon shadow
Would it kill you trying out the bright side now and then
C’mon Shadow…
Track Name: Missing You Fierce
At least that last sip of whiskey was warm and wet
As good a goodnight as I’m gonna get
I’ve been missing you woman and wishing you here
Been missing you something fierce
Been riding that late night bus where we got scandalous
Through the jaws of Los Angeles
Into the wild blue wanderlust
Been riding it just because
The strobe lights flared on
You were there and gone
You said “always’ then you just left
You left hallways in my footsteps
And this radio nothingness coming in clear
Has got me missing you something fierce
I’ve got this new drink you helped me stumble upon
Take the empty glass once the whiskey is gone
Garnish with fire & chase with tears
Track Name: All I Got and Gone
The water made it through the roof
To the busted baby grand
The drops are dripping on the mute yellow keys
Like the Dead remembering a melody
Play for me, play for me
She is all i got and gone
Baby used to harp and jaw
She’d argue with a weathervane
Tonight the wind is riled and raw
Go on let it rave
Maybe I will finally get my chance to cave
Anything, i’d give everything
She is all i got and gone
I tore this place up for a note
Sideboard, bureau, wardrobe, shelf
But the heart has four darkened drawers
And secrets from itself
So let that darkness take this room
And all these so called furnishings
I got a snapshot of the moon I took inside of me
Yellow eyes crying over yellowed ivory
Goodbye to me, say goodbye to me
She is all i got and gone
Track Name: All the Rivers in Colorado
I park the car by the river
One of our rivers
Of course this song would come on
I let it play by the river
I wade way into the river
Just to stand up neck deep boots n’ all
As the current crashing past me lashes
Both arms red and raw
But all the rivers in Colorado couldn’t wash you off of my mind
Not that I’m trying, just a thought though
Might be nice to keep from crying like all the rivers in Colorado
You would float down in my arms
Now you’re gone and though they know that
These stupid arms still hope to hold back
All the rivers in Colorado
Still the white river
Still the night river
Still the silver swordplay in the sun
Still the crystal blue clear, muddy root beer
Colored rivers run
But all the rivers in Colorado…
John is on the radio
But i’m at an all time Rocky Mountain low
And all the rivers in Colorado…
…Now you’re gone i get it though
I’ve got to learn to let it go like
All the rivers in Colorado
That old Gibson I sold will hopefully hold us through winter
It’s gonna get cold girl, but I’m going gold with you
Little work on this last verse, then I’ll come down to dinner
Reheat a dream with some hell in the meantime blues
Right at home in-between
Find me honing a dream
While i’m moaning the meantime blues
After dinner and dishes i sit down and switch on the TV
And unfreeze as the chorus occurs to me:
Rock’ll burden coal until the coal begins to sing
Every crushing blow is ever-focusing a dream
Track Name: Daddy Was a Skywriter
Daddy was a skywriter
Momma was a rock-stemmed rose
Papa shaped this place with grease and grace
Momma loved me I been told it shows
Tried and true as the color of his collar
His eyes grew bluer as he searched for words
But words are crumbs and the lesson of a father
Is how to hack your way through the hunger and the birds
Hopefully they’re right about the pen being mightier
That any weapon anyone’ll wield
But where they mark off men with the cross of a pen
I’ll carry my old man’s steel
Daddy was a skywriter…
She said build your house on the solid rock of Jesus
Fool to choose the sand of sin
I run out and sign myself a long lease
On a little place made of rain and wind
But she learned me pretty good about the CouldaWouldaShoulda
And the cripplin weight of a crutch
She wasn’t dead on about every little thing
But she weren’t dead wrong about much
Daddy was a skywriter
Track Name: The Highway Home
Ice is forming between the wheels and the asphalt
Ice is forming between my skin and bones
But that ice is warming to the sweet at last thought
Of taking the highway home
Taking the highway home
Taking the highway home
In the wake of the ice and snow I am
Taking the highway
This old road can be cold and mean
Halos of vultures and road kill dreams
Startling darkness on a windy ridge
Rockin my heart like an empty rig
Taking the highway home…
Sing of your sweet country roads
You can keep ‘em they’re way too slow
I don’t need no scenery
There’s only one scene I see
She’s why i’m taking the highway home
Taking the highway home
Her sunny day gonna melt me away and I’ll be
Taking the highway home
Track Name: Meantime Blues
Walking around talkin down to myself for a fight
Yet another unknown in the famous Nashville night
The old grey sky got the writer’s block
O.K., I have the writer’s block
The sky is just over it ever as always anew
While I’m frozen between times moanin’ the meantime blues
Stacks of old bills the mounting molehills i dread
It’s hard work keepin the roof off of your head
Dream my way through the day job straight home to pay my
Roll up my sleeves have a go at me some meantime blues

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