'Good Life' is Mark Elliott's 7th. Release. This is a CD of story-songs, covering all the influences in Mark's 20 year writing and recording career. 'Good Life' includes 9 new, original songs as well as 'Back on the Street Again' by the late Chicago, troubadour Tom Dundee. Other highlights include the tribute to New Orleans called, 'Crescent City Lullaby' and "Wake-Up," written for the Obama campaign and used in rallies and fundraisers in the last months of the campaign. Here are the stories behind the songs: Back On The Street Again (3:50) Tom Dundee (1975 Jack of Hearts Music, BMI) This song was written by my friend Tom Dundee in 1975. It describes with perfection, the finest vagabond I ever knew! I would have loved to have watched Tom listen to the trombone player on this song. It would have made him smile! "......I'm hanging out, hanging on, hanging in on the street again" I Love Country Music (4:21) Mark Elliott (2007 Mark Elliott Music, BMI) I wrote this song late one night, tucked back into my hollow west of Nashville. I was sitting around my fire pit listening to the owls, the crickets and the coyotes in the distant fields. Now that's country music in it's purest form. "I love country music, played by the country I love." Bye Bye baby Jane (4:25) Mark Elliott (2007 Mark Elliott Music, BMI) I've written my fair share of sad, "I need you to come back" songs. I've written several (ok - more than my fair share) "I hate you- I'm glad you're gone" songs. This one's my "feel-good - it's alright in the end" song! - "you were my first breath of sunshine, my first taste of rain - a million miles can't take that away, so bye bye baby Jane." Cordell (4:37) Mark Elliott (2007 Mark Elliott Music, BMI) I was commissioned by the Friends of Cordell Hull State Park in Tennessee to write a song about this famous statesman, considered to be the "Father of the United Nations". Cordell Hull epitomized the meaning of "serving your country well." The song will be used to raise the profile of Cordell Hull at the United Nations and in the Tennessee School System. - "Cordell, Cordell you served your country well. Far from the Cumberland Cabin you called home. The world needed you when the words of war were through. A quiet voice strong behind the scene - you said our passion must be peace." Arrogant People (3:26) Mark Elliott (2007 Mark Elliott Music, BMI) Well, I live in a town where arrogance is as common as putrid patties in a pasture! You can't walk a foot without stepping in it, but after awhile you start appreciating the art of it all! - "arrogant people sad and misunderstood - arrogant people only wish they could be common like you!" Wake Up (2:38) Mark Elliott (2008 Mark Elliott Music, BMI) I think musicians have a bad rap (and sometime deservedly so) about being preachy and full of themselves. I believe everything I wrote in this song...with all my heart. When I sing these lines I'm starring straight in the mirror - singing them to myself. If we all do our part, change is momentous and inevitable! - "This song might sound like it's blaming you. But the truth is man I'm guilty too. But I tell you right now, I ain't gonna' stay that way!" More Than A Wave From A Boat (3:29) Mark Elliott (2008 Mark Elliott Music, BMI) The inspiration for this song was a movie I watched about musicians, lovers and dreamers pretty much screwing up their lives with their passion. Ah, a story I know well! Our lives and relationships have to add up to more than just the beginning and the end. The magic is everything else in between. - "wherever you are I want you to know, we were more than just a wave from a boat" Brother Tom (2:51) Mark Elliott (2007 Mark Elliott Music, BMI) Tom Dundee's damn canoe still sits on the rack here at my house. He wanted to keep it in Tennessee because he kept drifting out into the shipping lanes of Lake Michigan on his moonlight cruises! He always said he would be by to pick up the old Ouachita (wa-shitta as he called it). I never believed him because I knew he loved Nashville and that giant heap of aluminum was just one more reason to make a trip down. Tom was killed on his motorcycle in April 06. I got a message from him on my machine about thirty minutes before his wreck. He said, "Brother Mark (he called everyone brother or sister) if you don't come visit me real soon, we're only gonna' be friends for five hundred more years." Ok - you gave me the title, so this one's for you "Brother Tom!" - "and we're only gonna' be friends I fear, 500 more years" Good Life (2:33) Mark Elliott/M. McAfee (1995Sony Music Publishing, BMI) There's always been something so peaceful about the open road, late at night heading home after a gig that meant something. This song was written, like many others on that long, beautiful I-81 corridor through the Shenandoah Mountains! - ".....I can see the mountains in a distant silhouette, reaching up for heaven but they ain't there yet." Crescent City Lullaby (4:50) Mark Elliott (2007 Mark Elliott Music, BMI) It took a long time for me to feel it was ok to write about Hurricane Katrina. I had to wait until I was hopeful. Even now (especially now) there is so much work to be done and so many wrongs to right. But I am hopeful! - ".....close your eyes; tomorrow's skies will be blue in New Orleans."
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