A Long Way Home

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Description

It has been a long-time dream of mine to record an album that reflects what Erin and I do together. That dream has finally been realized, and I truly could not be any more proud of what we have accomplished. So many obstacles we had to overcome – not the least of which being a global pandemic, but we persisted and now “A Long Way Home” is indeed home.


Notes & Lyrics:



All The Same - (click for lyrics)
We’re all the same
We all want the same things
A reason for living
To find our own way
And we all need
Love and understanding
Hope never ending
We all want to be free
We just want to be free
We’re all the same

We’re all the same
And it doesn’t really matter
The color of our skin
Or how we choose to pray
And we all need
To live and to let live
To give and to forgive
We all want to believe
We just want to believe
We’re all the same

So we hold on to our hearts
We hold on to our own truth
We try to let go of all our own fears
We got to let it go

We’re all the same
People everywhere
Just trying to survive
In a world filled with pain
And we all need
The love of a brother
The comfort of another
The arms of a lover
Something that is real

Something we can believe
We all want to believe
We all need to believe
We’re all the same

We’re all human, the family of Man. Regardless our race, gender, religion or nationality, we all face the same challenges in life. We all have the same hopes and dreams. All of us need love, acceptance, hope for the future, a means to provide for ourself and our families. And we desire the freedom to chart our own course in life. We want our children to grow up in a safe environment and we want them to have things better than we did. No one disputes these truths, yet it seems that now more than ever, they are under constant attack. Live and let live, the Golden Rule, give and forgive are values that seem to be fading away. We need civil discourse and the ability to reason with each other and to work toward a common goal of living together in peace. God help us if we cannot.

Song Credits:
Mitch Hayes – Acoustic Guitar, Lead Vocal
Erin Hayes – Background and Harmony Vocals
Jordan Hayes – Background and Harmony Vocals
Eric Lovell – Rhythm Electric Guitar, Lap Steel Guitar
Emanuel Wynter – Electric Violin
John Spurrier – Drums
Jason Adkins – Piano, Organ
Chris Revels – Bass

Words and Music by Mitch Hayes, BMI
Recorded, Mixed, Mastered and Produced by Eric Lovell
Recorded at at Blu Bubble Studios, Charlotte, NC
(C) 2020, All Rights Reserved



Dealer's Choice - (click for lyrics)
Everybody hurts sometime
Everybody feels pain
Everbody is a loser every now and then
If you stay in the game
No harm, no foul, nobody to blame
Everybody feels pain

Sometimes it feels like the whole world’s out to get ya
Sometimes you feel like you just can’t win
You pick up your cards and you place your bet
But this hand is dealer’s choice, my friend

Chorus

Its true that life can put your mettle to the test
But hold your ground and in the end
If you gave your all, if you did your best
Hold your head up high, my friend

Sometimes life can feel like quicksand
Sometimes it feels like a ball and chain
Sometines you’ve got to take a stand
Win or lose, just stake your claim

Chorus

No harm, no foul, nobody to blame……
Everybody feels pain
Everybody feels pain
Everybody hurts sometime

Sometimes bad things happen in life. Maybe it’s our own fault and maybe it isn’t. Every now and then things just go wrong. People don’t always treat us fairly, or treat us with respect and dignity. Sometimes we win and sometimes we lose. That’s just life. It tries us and tests our mettle. What defines us is not our circumstance but rather how we respond when life deals us a bad hand. When we get knocked down will we get back up, dust ourselves off and try again or will we just give up? Will we assess the situation and when necessary accept responsibility or just waste our time and energy playing the blame game? In truth, we all probably do a bit of both. That’s just human nature. Most importantly, regardless of who’s at fault, will we learn, grow and move on?

Song Credits:

Mitch Hayes – Acoustic Guitar, Vocals
Erin Hayes – Vocals
Eric Lovell – Rhythm Electric Guitar
Bass – Chris Revels
Tom Kuhn – Mandolin
Dale Meyer – Dobro, Lead Electric Guitar

Words and Music by Mitch Hayes, BMI
Recorded, Mixed, Mastered and Produced by Eric Lovell
Recorded at at Blu Bubble Studios, Charlotte, NC
(C) 2020, All Rights Reserved



Firewater - (click for lyrics)
Firewater, burning everything around
Poison water, killing without making a sound
Lambs to the slaughter, everywhere to be found
Our Sons and our daughters
Falling down to the ground

Firewater!

Save the children, if you wanna save the land
Teach the children, show them how to take a stand
Love the children, make them all understand
What we’re buildin’ It’s all part of the plan

And the Reaper you know he wanna cut ’em down
And the dealer wanna put ’em underground
And it rains, and it rains, and it rains, Firewater!

Instrumental

Save the children, save them now
Teach the children, teach them how
Love the children, love them now

Cause the Reaper you know he wanna cut ’em down
And the dealer wanna put ’em underground

When it rains, when it rains
When it rains, when it rains
When it rains, when it rains
When it rains, Firewater!

This song is a both a warning and a call to arms. It came about after watching the news, one evening. I saw story after story about terrible things happening to children, abuse and neglect, abduction, sex trafficking, street violence, etc. As I watched I was overwhelmed with both sorrow and anger and filled with utter disdain and disgust. I have also witnessed first-hand the devastating effects of these things on children, having worked for many years as a Pediatric Respiratory Therapist, much of in Pediatric Intensive Care.

Children are our legacy, our hope for the future. We must, as a society, do more to protect them and shield them from such heinous crimes! Firewater and Poison Water are metaphors with which to describe these horrors. The Reaper and the Dealer are of course references to drugs and death resulting from things like opiates, neglect and abuse. It’s not enough just to arrest and convict those who prey upon children, we must find more and better ways to prevent these things from happening, at all! This is the “what we’re building” (and should do a better job of building) I’m speaking to these protections, these shields, to protect them. We have to love, save, teach the children, our future as a society depends on it.

Song Credits:
Erin Hayes – Flute, Lead and Harmony Vocals
Mitch Hayes – Acoustic Guitar, Harmony Vocals
Eric Lovell – Electric Guitars
John Spurrier – Drums
Jason Adkins – Organ
Chris Revels – Bass

Words and Music by Mitch Hayes, BMI
Recorded, Mixed, Mastered and Produced by Eric Lovell
Recorded at at Blu Bubble Studios, Charlotte, NC
(C) 2019, All Rights Reserved



A Long Way Home - (click for lyrics)
I’ve been lookin’ for an answer
But the words ain’t come
I’m a song without a dancer
And it’s a long way home
It’s a long way home

Seems I just can’t remember
Where I’m supposed to be
I’m a letter marked return to sender
Oh, and it’s a long way home
It’s a long way home

I need a gust of wind to move me
Farther on down the line
I’m not sure where I’m goin’
I need an angel,
I need an Angel by my side

Someone please give me a reason
Cause I sho ain’t got the rhyme
I’m a ship without a beacon
Lost at sea, I’m runnin’ blind
And it’s the worst storm of the season

Oh, and it’s a long way home
It’s a long way home
It’s a long way home
It’s a long way home
A long way home

This is both a song of introspection and a cry for Divine help. I suppose one could call it a prayer. I wrote it at a time when I was feeling a bit hopeless and confused, after peering inside with self reflection, not liking some of the things that I saw and asking God for help. It speaks to some very powerful and dark emotions, of feeling lost, purposeless, lacking in direction. It’s a look into the the darkness of the storm and wondering “where’s the way out?” There’s not a person who at one time or another has not had to deal with these emotions. We’ve all been there. But it is not just a song of feeling hopeless. It’s also a cry for and expectation of Divine help. “I need a gust of wind (the wind of the spirit) to move me, “I need an angel (divine intervention) by my side.”

Song Credits
Mitch Hayes – Acoustic Guitar, Banjo, Lead and Harmony Vocals
Erin Hayes – Lead and Harmony Vocals
Eric Lovell – Electric Guitars
Jim Ashton – Pedal-Steel Guitar
Chris Revels – Bass
John Spurrier – Drums

Music by Mitch Hayes, BMI
Lyrics by Mitch Hayes, BMI and Emily Stewart, SESAC
Recorded, Mixed, Mastered and Produced by Eric Lovell
Recorded at at Blu Bubble Studios, Charlotte, NC
(C) 2019, All Rights Reserved



The Word Is You - (click for lyrics)
All I have is all I need
Comes with you, comes to me
In a word, love is true
And the word is you

Call it luck or call it fate
Never lost, never late
After all is said and done
Darlin’ you’re the one for me

And the word is you
The word is you

Instrumental

Now we walk the sands of time
Heart to heart, your hand in mine

You’re my lover, my best friend
Seems I just cant remember when
It was only me
Since your love set me free

And the word is you
The word is you
The word is you
The word is you

All I have is all I need

This is a love song written for my Patti, my best friend and the love of my life. When we find that one person who completes us, then all we have truly is all we need. In him or her we have a best friend, a lover, a companion, someone to share life’s ups and downs, with. We’re blessed to have someone to walk beside us hand in hand and heart to heart. The lyrics in this song refer to our love for each other and also pay tribute to the one true source of love, God’s love for us all.

Song Credits:

Mitch Hayes – Acoustic Guitar, Vocals
Erin Hayes – Harmony Vocals
Tom & Melanie Demer – Strings
Ron Brendle – Upright Bass
Jamie Brock – Percussion
Mike Alicke – Lead Electric Guitar

Words and Music by Mitch Hayes, BMI
Recorded, Mixed, Mastered and Produced by Eric Lovell
Recorded at at Blu Bubble Studios, Charlotte, NC
String Section written, arranged and recorded by Tom Demer
at Phone It In Studio, Arlington, TX
(C) 2020, All Rights Reserved



Musings - (click for lyrics)
Sittin’ here thinkin’ what once was
What is now and what’s to come
Oh and I, I may never know, never know

You know it’s a wonder the how and the why
Still I wonder, I wonder why
And I, I may never know, never know

But if I….get quiet….long enough
It’s so easy to get caught up in the worryin’
Just where did I go wrong
Where did I go wrong

I ask the questions, get no response
But some of the questions I ask more than once
Oh well I, I may never know, Oh never know

But if I….sit quiet…long enough
It’s so easy caught up in the worryin’
Where the hell did I go wrong
Where did I go wrong

Life has meanin’ I truly believe
But we’re not always seein’ what we can’t conceive
And sometimes, we just never know, never know
And sometimes, we just never know, never know
And sometimes, we just never know

Sittin’ here thinkin, what’s to come

This bluesy song speaks to my tendency for introspection and self-reflection. Erin’s sweet vocals contrasted with Jordan’s haunting and occasionally dissonant harmony and background vocals, reflect the tension in life between it’s sweetness and it’s difficulties. I often think about what once was, what is now, what’s to come and life’s mysteries for which we don’t always have the answer. I muse upon the “what if’s” and the “what if not’s,” the “where did I go wrong” and the “what should I have done differently.” Truth is, we don’t always know the why or the when for some things and in many cases we may never know. To me, that’s what makes life such a grand and spiritual adventure. It causes me to cherish every good gift life bestows upon me and makes me question the purpose and meaning behind all of it’s twists and turns even though I may never truly know the answers.

Song Credits:
Mitch Hayes – Acoustic Guitar, Banjo
Erin Hayes – Lead and Harmony Vocals
Jordan Hayes – Background and Harmony Vocals
Tom Kuhn – Mandolin
Dale Meyer – Dobro
Ron Brendle – Upright Bass
John Spurrier – Drums

Words and Music by Mitch Hayes, BMI
Recorded, Mixed, Mastered and Produced by Eric Lovell
Recorded at at Blu Bubble Studios, Charlotte, NC
(C) 2020, All Rights Reserved



Brother - (click for lyrics)
Brother, where are you goin’
Brother, where have you been
How long, til you’ll be knowin’
You’re only chasin’, chasin’ the wind
So long, so long, chasin’ the wind

Brother, I can’t go with you
Brother, I can’t see the way
How long, will you intend to
Just keep on runnin’ runnin’ away
Oh I, Oh I, wish you could stay

I know, you feel so hopeless
The pain won’t go away
It Drives you into the darkness
You’ve lost, you’ve lost your way
But I know the darkness that haunts you inside
Will only confine you unless you decide
To run to the light, the light of day

Brother, I will stay with you
Brother, right by your side
I promise, I will defend you
I’ll never leave you, or run from the fight
No I, No I, won’t run from the fight

Brother, where are you goin’
Brother, where have you been
It’s not the end

I have this tendency to closet myself away sometimes, pick up my guitar and just noodle around with some chord progressions. Often my Muse will take this opportunity to come vist me and inspire me to write a song. On one such occasion I began to reflect upon a friend I hadn’t seen in quite some time. His was a difficult and self-destructive life with alcohol abuse at it’s core. We spent a lot of time together and I often tried to help him but to no avail. I had my own weaknesses, ones that if I allowed them to, would make me prone to the same kinds of problems. So, I eventually had to say to him, “no, I Can’t go down that rabbit hole with you.” It was a hard thing to say and do but I had to. I just couldn’t let him drag me down with him. I assured him that I’d be there for him, ready and willing to do whatever it takes to help, if he would just be willing to try. Sadly, I had to watch as he walked away in anger, unwilling to turn. I often wonder what happened to my friend, I’ll probably never know.

Song Credits:
Mitch Hayes – Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, Harmonica, Tambourine

Words and Music by Mitch Hayes, BMI
Recorded, Mixed, Mastered and Produced by Eric Lovell
Recorded at at Blu Bubble Studios, Charlotte, NC
(C) 2020, All Rights Reserved

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