A Bee In Her Mouth

by Steve Gates

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credits

released 28 February 2012

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about

Steve Gates Halifax, Nova Scotia

Recorded in a makeshift studio in a Halifax apartment and produced by John Critchley (Dan Mangan, Elliott Brood), “A Bee In Her Mouth” is Steve Gates’ debut full-length record. Recording started the day after a public talk given by Daniel Lanois during which he inspired his listeners to be reckless and trust themselves in the studio. The result is a record that is ragged and beautiful. ... more

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Track Name: Proud Convey It
Proud Convey It
I’ve got a story and I’m proud to tell you it
I’ve got a bong and I proud display it
I’ve got a pride and I proud convey it
I’ve got a knife in a pocket and I’m gonna take it out

Cause you put me in the corner with the magazines
Put me in the corner like a bag of beans
Put me in the corner and I know what it means
You put me in the corner with a hat
An’ I’m gonna take it off; I’m gonna take it off

But the truth is you’re a tourist and you’ll never know
Collect things on your visit to tell your friends about
An’ you shiver while you live here but you’ll never really know
The feeling of having healing in your hands and then it lets you go…
Track Name: Godforsaken
Godforsaken
Whiskey runs around this town
Like a fire burning underground
But there is no amount of water
An’ there is no amount from man

Godforsake the man
Godforsake the man

Pine trees twisted but proud
Parting for the highway and the summer crowds
But there is no amount of money
And there is no amount of land

Godforsake the man
Godforsake the man
Who built these bridges here
Oh godforsake the man

Godforsake the man
Godforsake the man
Who built these bridges an’ tears them down
Who gives them money and tears them down

A museum of wilderness confines
Memories trapped in smaller tongues to resign
But there is no amount of money
And there is no amount from man
Track Name: Bright Blue Candy Suns
Bright Blue Candy Suns
It’s a long
Long walk you say
To the store today
Coffee and newspapers
So far away
It makes me run
Run off at the mouth
You’ve got me singing you south
I’ve given up
My excuses runnin’ out

With your
Bright blue candy suns
Got my heart on the run
And I’m feelin’ like I’m under
Your bright blue candy stars
Got me drivin’ so far

And I’m wearin’
My heart and my feelings
Like a mirror on the ceiling
You reflect all my feelings

With your
Bright blue candy suns
Track Name: Lost Balloons
Lost Balloons

I found her note of interest
Underneath this old balloon
Lost here in a hurricane
On this island here marooned

Note said I’m the one you’re searching for
I am the diamond for which men die
I’m the queen of Quinpool Rd.
Where the ocean meets the sky

So I rowed all evening
Rowed on into the night
I held the balloon close
As the land crept out of sight

I found her home by starlight
A tiny dory lost at sea
She was lying on her back
An’ she smiled up at me

Well I found a home beside her
There in the comforts of her eyes
Now I feel like drinking less and I feel like dancing more

An’ I feel like drinking less and dancing more

I was like a sleeping nation
Peaceful with not a watchful eye
She took out her swinging sabers
An’ covered me in powder rings

So I went back to the island
An’ destroyed all the lost balloons
But I cannot keep them off
An’ they’ll be here again soon

So one day she came to see me
Said she was in need of something new
Said kiss me and I’ll go
I said maybe you don’t have to go

I found an inch of truth
Running loose in our old room
But there was always mile of mystery in the halls
Miles of mystery in the halls

Well I found a home beside her
There in the comforts of her eyes
Now I feel like drinking less and I feel like dancing more
Track Name: Five White Tigers
Five White Tigers
She was 8 years old
But her eyes were so much older
Her unwashed face
Red hair down to her shoulders
She never held her tongue in public places
She had no need to hide her thoughts
At Christmas all that she wanted was
Five white tigers

The year she fell ill
They put her in a room with one tv
With lots of cards
With lots of flowers and lots of cards
An’ when I found out
I was in a working camp
Up in northern ontario
An’ as the flies bit in
I dreamt of five white tigers


She was 8 years old
But her eyes were so much older
Her unwashed face
Red hair down to her shoulders
As years went by
There were parts of her that never recovered
But at Christmas all that she asked for was
Five white tigers
Track Name: Keepin People Out
Keepin’ People Out
When I was young I hated the union
(Keepin’ people out by keeping people in)
See ‘em on the street say what are you doin’?
(Keepin’ people out by keeping people in)
The NDP says they got my back but they all live in the city and drive a Cadillac
Now I’m old and safe and I’m part of the problem
Keepin’ people out by keeping people in

Now I went down to the united nations
(keepin’ people out by keeping people in)
They was tryin’ to decide what to do with the Hatians
(keepin’ people out by keeping people in)
Drop cherry blossoms from planes in the sky
An’ we’ll starve ‘em all to death with apple pie
Then we’ll privatize the mail, hospital and jail
‘Cause we’re keepin’ people out by keeping people in

Back when I was young on the schoolyard playin’
(Keepin’ people out by keeping people in)
I was in peter’s little gang when a bully came chasin’
(Keepin’ people out by keeping people in)
The bully went down when peter stepped in
He looked me in the eyes and said, “you’re lucky you’re in.”
Not a truer sentence ever been heard by my big ears
Keepin’ people out by keeping people in

When I went to heaven I met saint peter
Said if I had your job you wouldn’t get in neither
I could run this place more better than you
I’d send’em all south in a big canoe
But when I got to heaven they wouldn’t take me neither
‘Cause they was keepin’ people out by keeping people in

When I got to heaven they wouldn’t take me neither
‘Cause I was keepin’ people out by keeping people in
Track Name: Hello Jesus
Hello Jesus
Hello jesus what’s the lesson?
I’m in the bathroom
I’m confessin’
To a toilet half my age
Down the drain with all my secrets
Set them free into the ocean
Found by some
Sailboat driving business man

They were shaggin’ in the public gardens
The rented cops were watchin’ tv
They were swimming with ducks and geese
They were naked underneath
They were touchin’ cause they like to
Swimming in the night to
They are friends of mine

Come on in and come on back now

Stories end they seem to go by
Stories end before you know b’y
I am going back again
To the chorus the refrain
To the well loved and the lonely
The pretty and the homely
To the city by the sea
Track Name: A Bee In Her Mouth
A Bee in her Mouth

I got a 55 oldsmobile
Jes’ like the song sings
Got a miracle baby on the way

Spent the nights getting colder
Mall parking lot
Twenty weeks away and twenty to go

We’ll smoke it wet
Just one more time
I’ve got her problem and she has mine
With a bee in her mouth and bird in her womb

Know it really changed her
Just growing up this way
Always making shift a manger from cars and clay

Got a miracle baby
Or so this song sings
Jes’ caught a bird in a teapot with golden wings

Can it make you whole?
Can a baby make you whole?
Track Name: Something New
Something New

Leave it on your mind
Leave it on the sunshine right behind you and wait for a while
Just leave it for a day

leave it on the sea
Just leave it here with me, the birds take off their gowns and Forget about it
Just stumble here with me
Stumble here with me

Do you feel it something new
Starts to remind you of all the things you used to do
The things you used to do
The things you used to do

I was feeling young
As nervous as a tongue on candied skin on the way to LA
You’d fallen on my lap and everything

You were looking bold
Still on fire but a little older
Than you were when you last looked my way
I’d fallen on your lap and everything
Track Name: Darlin
Darlin’

Darlin’, you showed up again
With a tear in your eye and
All those years on your skin
You were always innocent of this but guilty of that

It was all that I could do to help you now

Darlin’ I was at fault
But there are things we done
That mean we can never be friends
We were always innocent of this, but guilty of that
Track Name: Tonight
Tonight

Tonight just let it go

Burden in my head
Let me sleep now
Burden in my dream
Let me be
Remember won’t you say what you mean

An’ tonight just let it go

Worry in my help
Scare my company
Worry in my gall
And my seed
Remember won’t you say what you mean

An’ tonight just let it go

We’re growing up too late
We’re growing up
We’re growing up enough
enough

Tonight just let it go
Track Name: Down to the River
Down to the River

Down to the river of his arms she went
Carrying the weight away

There’s a feeling in my heart
And it feels nice and cold
Reminds me of a joke
That a little boy has told
And we all know it well
We’ve all been there before
An’ you can bring it to my house
But you can leave it at the door

Down to the river of his arms she went
Carrying the weight away

There’s somethin’ in my heart
And it feels nice and warm
It is heavy like a book, but it reads like a poem
You can sing it like a seed
Sew it in your mind
Plant it in your morning
And grow it in your mind

Down to the river of his arms she went
Carrying the weight away
Carrying the weight away