Two Folks on the Road Have Got a Home

“Two Folks on the Road Have Got a Home” is another song from my days living with Adam and Greg in Hollywood (a stone’s throw from the Hollywood Guitar Center and the timeless Sunset Grill), but about 9 months later than “Blue Independence.”

It was the spring of 1995. Filmmaker Larra Anderson had acquired my services (for the cost of a smile) to score a short film with acoustic guitar music. The movie, Drowning In West, was a road movie about three young women roadtripping in a 1970’s muscle car, and besides my music would also feature America’s song “Sister Golden Hair”.

All of this must have been going through my mind that spring as Larra revved up film production.

Funnily enough I think I wrote this song right before I dug into the score work on Larra’s movie… I can recall reading the script the first time and being amazed that it was cut from the same cloth as this song I had just written. Perhaps I had heard Larra describe the script to me a few months earlier. When I sent her my first tape of possible music ideas for the film I included my original recording of “Two Folks” in case she wanted to use it. (She said no, and correctly so, upon seeing the completed film).

In any case, there were road movies in the air that spring of 1995.

Musically, at this time, I was enraptured by the glorious debut album of The La’s. (Who ever dreamed there would not be another?). I think I borrowed that CD from Laura Pak and never returned it. Sorry, Laura.

This song was certainly influenced by The La’s, in particular the chiming lead guitar part. It was written as a rollicking mid-tempo foot-tapping kind of song, but the version I recorded tonight is almost dirge-like. Perhaps I’m just “low energy”, but I was also recording with a nylon-stringed guitar (for the first time ever), in bad need of a truss rod adjustment (though I’m not sure this guitar even has a truss rod), and the dulcet tones that were coming out of it led me to slow the song down to a more thoughtful tempo.

Also, I never did take this trip… at least with anyone except Spotify… so perhaps now it is played with regret instead of promise.

This song, along with a couple of others that come to mind (“Shutout at Fenway Park” and “I Got Faith”) emerged Mozart-like from my fingers and lips: completely finished in less than 15 minutes. This is a mystery to me, and I mostly feel, upon reflection, the way a rookie safety in the NFL might when Tom Brady throws a once-in-a-lifetime errant screen pass right into your hands and you waltz 50 yards into the end zone. All you can do is point at the sky and set the football down gently.

— — —

TWO FOLKS ON THE ROAD HAVE GOT A HOME

won’t you come back and see
kidnap me
I’ll pay ransom, what’s the going rate?

I sit down by the road
a heavy load
on a lonely strip of interstate

take a trip with me
tell me some more stories
of old Jack out on the road
hitching out from Lowell
towards imaginary Rome
cause two folks on the road have got a home

put some tiger in your tank
let’s hit the bank
and I’ll cash in all these penny rolls

Texas waits down below
Mexico
where the highway’s striped with Aztec gold

take a trip with me
for miles and miles and miles and miles
the blacktop glows
and nothing matters much except the gas that makes it go
cause two folks on the road have got a home

I sit back in the car
watching the stars
rolling silent through the side window

your hands tight on the wheel
sunburn peel
paint some roses on your fingernails

take a trip with me
we’re miles apart but I can see
you’re living life alone
we don’t need love and everything
just OPEC and some chrome
cause two folks on the road have got a home

take a trip with me
for miles and miles and miles and miles
the blacktop glows
and nothing matters much
except the gas that makes it go
cause two folks on the road have got a home

Recording:

https://soundcloud.com/patrick-williams-music/two-folks-on-the-road-have-got-a-home