Three Leaf Clover

by Whiting Tennis

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about

Recorded at: 275 Mott Street, NYC, the MacDowell Colony, Vic and Dave's garage, Brants' house, and studio A practice rooms, Seattle, on Fostex 80. Fixed and mixed by Johnny Sangster at Crackle and Pop and master by Ed Brooks at RFI, Seattle, 2006.

credits

released June 16, 2006

Whiting Tennis- songs and singing, guitars, piano, bass and organ
Josh Belknap- drums on Summer, Teenage Daughter, One True Love and William Harry Holmes
Henry Bogden- dobro on Clouds of Mercy
Jennifer Devore- cello on One True Love ad Teenage Daughter
Gerald Manke- pedal steel on Summer and William Harry Holmes
Annie Philipsen- singing on Three Leaf Clover
Johnny Sangster- electric guitar on Summer



Thanks to Johnny and Kevin Landers, and John Devore, Pete Moe, Hiroshi Kimura of the Scholars and for the contributions of Henry, Gerald, Josh and Jen in New York and Annie and Johnny in Seattle.
For my niece, Liza Hyde Tennis

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about

Whiting Tennis Seattle, Washington

Virginia- born
Buffalo-kid
Seattle-big kid
New York City-art
Seattle-house
--------------- -------------------------------------
Hello Dolly 1999
Three Leaf CLover 2006
I Do 2012
----------------------------------------------------
presently represented by Fin Records, Seattle,
recording, and performing with recording artists
Barb Hunter
Jim Antonio
Jaff Baars
Bill Patton
... more

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Track Name: Teenage Daughter
Teenage Daughter

cotton balls and tumbleweeds
are rolling down the street
and they're shining like a snowflake shining
and I'm floating on the breeze
through the tinsel covered trees
towards a bright and blurry blinding...
sunday morning coming down
like a redwood to the ground
as the wind whips the waves upon the water
and I see her in my mind
like a seagull in the sky my long lost teenage daughter

her hair is hanging down in braids
the sun it shines behind her face
like a yellow green and violet morning
and she's calling out my name
just as sure as I'm awake
just as the day is dawning
and though I know I've done my best
I just can't keep up with the rest
stranded on the highway of this lifetime
now you know that I'm n good
I've told you every way I could
the angel that I've come to know as mine
my teenage daughter
my teenage daughter

sunday morning coming down
like a redwood to the ground
as the wind whips the waves upon the water
and I see her in my mind
before I open up my eyes
the angel that I've come to know as mine
my teenage daughter
my teenage daughter
Track Name: This Town
This Town

this town is just a restaurant
with a waitress in a halter top
what'll you have, what'll you have
but what do you really want?
well one of everything please

I'm off today on holiday
where I'm going I do not know
it might be spain it might be france
and it might be jersey city new jersey
holding onto that girl, though it's only a doll
you can wait for the rest of your life
for nothing at all

hurray it's the fourth of July
green and purple explode in the sky
you see a giant blue and orange electric umbrella
and I see the perfect black of the night
looking in to this world
like a crystal ball
you can see whatever you want
and I see everything at once
Track Name: William Harry Holmes
William Harry Holmes

the chapter I remember
was called william harry holmes
he passed a haystack right beside the road
a month of easter sundays
could never bring him home
it snowed all night and the field turned white
in the haystack by the road

so don't play stupid child
we all know who's to blame
you wonder how it ever got this strange
watch your breath as it leaves you all alone
it's times like these you really need
that haystack by the road
the haystack by the road

so if you chance to have to last
a night out in the cold
remember what I told you
about william harry holmes
william harry holmes
and the haystack by the road
Track Name: Summer
Summer

feeling sharp and cold and hallow
believing everything is through
just when you finally decided
what to do
here comes something from the summer
here comes something from the shore
but you won't see that face
unless you stay a little longer
maybe it's just around the corner
maybe just across the water
maybe if you stay for the summer

parking backwards on the sidewalk
and packing boxes on the car
stuffed with things I never knew I had
and never wore
there goes jason and susan
they think I'm leaving for the weekend
she'll never know how many times I saw her on the ceiling
maybe it's just around the corner
maybe just across the water
maybe if you stay for the summer
Track Name: Three Leaf Clover
Three Leaf Clover

it's just an ordinary day
in blue green yellow black and grey
and his mind it rhymes like a crazy eight
and now he's holding out his hand
like a tree with a broken branch
though he sees himself as just an ordinary man
it doesn't matter what you do
because he dreams of coming home to you
and Desi can't tell the difference between red and blue
the difference between red and blue

and now he's standing in the back
in two boots and a hat
counting calico bricks in a smoking stack
and if you give this boy a start
this three leaf clover heart
is going to burn like a dozen shooting stars
it doesn't matter what you say
because he loves you more when you're away
and Desi can't tell the difference between seven and eight
the difference between seven and eight
Track Name: Japanese Lanterns
Japanese Lanterns

I found an old picture of you
sitting in the clarksburg pool
green and yellow and blue
a brand new bathing suit
I could fill the giant silver screen
if I could only remember what I've seen
found a photograph of you from 1972
japanese lanterns rise
into the midnight sky
and I'm on fire

I found an old letter from you
you saw a childhood ghost on the number two
flying a kite up into the storm
he jumped down from the roof and broke his arm
you could write the all american tome
if you could just remember what you've done
flying a kite up into the storm
jumped down from the roof and broke his arm
japanese lanterns rise
into the midnight sky
and I'm on fire
japanese lanterns rise
into the midnight sky
and I'm on fire
Track Name: One True Love
One True Love

give me shelter, give me food
but I'd rather have something I can use
your little hand, even just a finger
could take me all the way back to Virginia

I've been good, but I am bad
'cause I want everything you have
that marble mansion, that frozen dinner
won't you share your love you little sinner

the trees are leaning, the roof is singing
and it makes me feel like going back to England
I know it's sad there, and I know it's old
And that's exactly why it's where you will go
When you have changed
And you’ve accepted
This one true love that you rejected
Track Name: Clouds of Mercy
Clouds of Mercy

well it's the greatest single moment of your life
but there is just one hitch
the woman you've just taken for a wife
well she's the wicked witch
now with a bottle and a broom
she'll leave your whole damn life in ruin
and you know I'm going to help you if I can
but I am just one man

as the horseshoe goes rolling through the grass
well you were almost right
you thought that you had something that would last
and that was just last night
now with a hammer and a nail
you're built your own courthouse and jail
and you know that I would try to get you out
if I could free myself
clouds of mercy
hover like a hand held over a hole
while old new jersey
is steaming like a road kill on the road

well there's a little piece of cupcake in your hair
and the sky is blue
you know it makes me want to touch your hair
but that would never do
now with my lies and your teasing
it's like one two three and now we're even
and maybe in another lucky life
well we could try that out

clouds of mercy
hover like a hand held over a hole
while old new jersey
is smoking like a road kill on the road
clouds of mercy
hover like a hand held over a hole
while old new jersey
is bleeding like a road kill in the snow
in the snow
Track Name: The Golden Spike
The Golden Spike

sun dried tomato hands
and petty coats on the nail
the golden spike was driven home
where the eastern met the western rail
your finger looks like a worm
laying is his fingered hook
and I always thought I had a stupid heart
and now I know and there's your proof

I'm going to pray with the grass that's blowing
out in the wind so hard and cold
and I can dream about where I hope I'm going
where the golden spike was hammered home

excuse me for all my longing
I'm sorry that I'm such a mess
but I'm sick and physically need something
from your medicine chest
your face looks just like the lake
where we used to have a summer place
and I know you can take me back there
because I know that you know the way

I'm going to pray like the grass that's blowing
out in the wind so hard and cold
and I can dream about where I hope I'm going
where the golden spike was hammered home

so if you don't mind taking advice
from someone that would never know
then don't bother searching anywhere but where
the golden spike was hammered home
Track Name: Louisiana Donut Counter Man
Louisiana Donut Counter Man

louisiana donut counter man
pointing to an atlas lying under my hand
and I think I hear an echo some somewhere long ago
but it's just the man trying to say hello
sleeping on the indian mound
as the freezing fog falls down to the ground
the ferris wheel turns through the night
taking me to the other side
and they'll never capture that and now that you mention it
that's kind of sad

one legged hitch hike man
trying to make his way to houston
and he tunes my radio down the dial
to where a one legged man would come from
crashing in a rest stop field
my forehead feels like a windshield
ferris wheel turns through the stars
taking me to where the others are
and they'll never capture that
and now that you mention it
I should be glad
no they'll never capture that not in a million years
and that's a fact

and they'll never capture that
not in a movie and not in a book
Track Name: The Kustard King
The Kustard King

a big man in a mustache and a cap
holds onto his life by a little white strap
she stands behind his elbow in a gown
with a smile for the popsicle that I hand down
jungle jim wins hands down
because he knows that you can't get down

it's summertime and the children are free
they play between parked cars,
jump rope in the street
how they run to the bell that I ring
the summer I drove
the Kustard King
G.I. joe don't give a damn
old enough to be your dad

and he's building
popsicle stick houses
with stockings and dresses and blouses
and when push comes to shove
he'll drop your little orange love
on the boardwalk above

september it calls like my mom
from the screen porch door "it's time to come in"
gotta leave my little creamsicle girl
in the big harry hands of the big harry world
yet who am I to blame?
knowing that I'd do the same
and he's building popsicle stick towers
with presents and promises and flowers
and you'll figure it out
when he pulls his stick out
yea you'll figure it out when he pulls his stick out
and drops you in the sand
Track Name: Wisconsin Blue
Wisconsin Blue

she's looking at cloverleaves
beneath the apple tree
true love finally found
lying rotting on the ground

once downhearted now departed
blue wisconsin plain
once divided now decided
on this gentleman

he stands beside the tracks
pink sky and smoking stacks
red brick and yellow wood
just like his neighborhood

once downhearted now departed
blue wisconsin plain
once divided now united
by this winter wind