Songs for the Anti​-​De​-​Counterrevolution

by Rob Getzschman

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07:34

about

Rob Getzschman's debut album was recorded in St. Louis by DJ Crucial of F5 Records. When Getzschman showed it to Dave Van Ronk that year and asked him what he thought, Van Ronk told him, "You need to throw out all your Dylan records."

credits

released June 23, 2000

Rob Getzschman, guitar, harmonica
DJ Crucial, engineer, mix and master
Dave Getzschman, photography

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Rob Getzschman Los Angeles, California

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Track Name: A Century Late
Sometimes I wish I had the Storyville sound from way downtown
I mean right in the heart of New Orleans
Where I could find myself some city block
To let my fingers walk and make the ivories talk, ya see
But all them barrelhouses done closed
That sporting life died so long ago
My best conclusion to date
I just musta been born about a century late

If I were Henry Ford on the factory floor
With progress on my mind and my mind on the assembly line
I'd sit and watch those Model Ts
Bein' manufactured and shipped from here to Belize or Los Angeles
But now it seems as much ground we gain we lose
And it's givin' me those Edsel blues
My best conclusion to date
I just musta been born about a century late

I'll make a nostalgic bid for the yellow kid
When there were still some words to let the truth get heard
Before the message was the medium
Before we let our thought facilities grow cold and dumb
Now all the media moguls choose
What trivia to sell as news
My best conclusion to date
I just musta been born about a century late

I said the way I can see St. Sebastian and me
Shot fulla arrows and lashed to a tree
Martyrs for the sake of a tale to be told and grow old
And make a good man grab for his grail
Back when sainthood was as simple as
Bein' murdered by the brainless masses
My best conclusion to date
I just musta been born about a century late

Yes, back in the day the way that evil was laid out
In madmen and loons against them that prayed out loud
A simple value scheme
Black and white, just like good versus bad, it seems
But it was just as much an illusion then
And for all the myriad forms of sin
My best conclusion of late
Is that I'm right on time for this immediate
To be heaped up high on my servin' plate
Because the only path that'll make any sense
I'll let the past relax, boy, and live the present tense
Track Name: Notes From The Underground
Make it obvious, the prevailing, unknown thought says to me
As I battle back a world of insignificancity
Breathin' hard into the sails of my mind
And compelling me to surrender to the dying
And with all existing havens beckoning
I am a prizefighter cocked back to take a swing

Well experts say and studies show and you don't have to guess
They'll drop their dollars down for dirt if you just promise sex
And the peddler aims to push the primal lie
To make equation of the terms 'to live' and 'to buy'
Set a standard for the second step beneath the lowest rung
And they'll cater every party favor until they've got you hung
Pedestrian luck bites off a buck more than he can chew
The money you don't make is the money that will make you
And the welcome mat to this world of easy wealth
Reads "It's so easy, man, come help yourself"
I want freedom from denominational minds
Freedom from pecuiniarial shrines
And now listen to those tin whistles whine
I will be damned by every dollar that steals a moment of my thought
And makes me stop and take a look at everything I haven't got
Every million-dollar figure wastes my time
Lord, ain't a man still a man without a dime
And in this world of monetary wills
Lord I'm beggin' you to post no bills

I sat empty at the table, filled in front of me
As I sought the prophets' wisdom from the words of history
I'm gonna wade and be bidin' my time
And let distill and find the kinda guy I'm
Though I profane what I try to explain despite my tried precision
'Cause words, like feeble messengers, are fraught with indecision
The opened mouth, half estranged to wisdom's touch
Though ink an quill present potential for so much
I think recycled thoughts I'm apt to call my own
In a processed hope to apprehend the unknown
Well I try so hard to see things in a glow
But cynicism strikes its timid blow
And now listen to those tin whistles crow
I have seen evil taking action in the minds of honest men
Seen plain, it makes me laugh or retch and I shake my weary head
And I refuse the dues of pity and contempt
While I watch the thinking fabric being hemmed
You can lead the masses to the water main
But to keep them there, you've got to entertain

Through the windows of the soul I shoplift, my mind is always caught
To behold so rarely does define just what is and what is not
True perception is too often misperceived
Having eyes, can you see and not believe?
What's held for fact is viewed and persuaded as perception
But the thoughts are misconstrued and arrangéd for projection
And I face the foes I know I most despise
And they're emerging more from right behind my eyes
As I wrestle back against volunteered decay
I pay the price that's only mine to pay
If there's something wrong, it's something I can't see
And I've closed my own eyes to eternity
And now listen to those tin whistles scream
I have reason to be disgusted, 'cause my reason makes me blind
I've missed when I've been trusted, and that's weighin' on my mind
Clouded by the lens intended to correct
I am still in the dark unless I'm circumspect
And that's not to say that every effort is amiss
But I can barely strike a match in this abyss

One last riddle-ridden paradox hauled from the starboard nets
Two minds can best a pair of rocks, but I wouldn't hedge my bets
Conclusion to the elaborate delusion on display:
Question every evident to identify the grey
The final sin committed by the small
Is to act as if you apprehend it all
Track Name: Now Hear This
Well if the nightengale could sing like Maurice Chevalier
It would be market war against the corporate larks
They would be workin' overtime like Engels and Marx
And I don't mean to demean, but I think all the while
Those business whelps need self-help like Samuel Smiles, ya see
Now hear this

Golly gee, I love it when things are the way they are supposed to be
The perfect picture, the exhausted thought
The considered sound to nail what it is you got
But more often than not and too often to tell
People sacrifice the sacred lookin' forward towards what it is that sells
Now hear this

Extra! Extra! The entertainment deluge I pray you will swim past the surface glass
For all the nonsense-ation proliferation everything smacks
Of a superficial surfeit of class
Well, I try to dive a mile deep everyday
Because the view at sea level hasn't changed in a decade
Or three. Now hear this

Hey baby, lemme go and show you how to sell 'em a load of clams
One thing I know, and one thing I don't
But I can't remember which is which and I don't wanna have to switch
Lemme offer you a nickel's worth of free advice
Don't solicit suggestions when you already know what's right
Now hear this

I'm happy, irregardless of the fabled, mislabeled garbage industry
'Cause I can write my mind and make up words
And live creative just as long as I preserve some kind of truth, some reality
And in this vein, lemme throw you a curve
Everybody gets the success that they deserve, ya see
I hear that
Track Name: The New School Of Fascism
Well this new school of fascism is difficult to contend
And this new school of fascism is difficult to condemn
I knew a thing or two about it all, I'm sure
But I would be pressed to tell you just what exactly they were

There are about ten corporations in control of my mind
'Cause everything I see comes from one or the other nine
Well, they may not be able to control exactly what I think, now
But they surely can control just exactly what I'm thinkin' about

Two hundred, thirty million fed at the discretion of ten
Can you say, "Extreme corporate oligarchy" children?
This monopoly dawn is gonna stretch on into the night
Good morning, Mr. Orwell, I believe Mr. Huxley was right

Who dressed me this morning? I don't rightly know
I just listen to the airwaves and follow the shows
And I swallow suggestion much quicker than milit'ry force
But I'll tell you it was all my own decision, of course

Put your products in your newspapers, on your billboards, in your magazines
And televise 'em til we've no other thought
Make us love our servitude unto everything that we want and you got
And you know that this new school of fascism is difficult to contend
Because it's fine with us and that's fine with them

They've got us surrounded
They've got us surrounded
Track Name: The Boiling Point
For four and one-half billion years, the world is spinnin' in its tilted tracks
And it's only taken one twentieth century to see there is no turnin' back
All the scientists say that they know the age of the whole entire universe
While I wonder how well we know ourselves, but of course, it's first thing's first
And I'll have to rock this joint and say that we've reached the boiling point

The population hit six billion, baby, and doubled in the last thirty years
At this rate, I'm wonderin' how long it'll take until we all run out of frontier
A hundred years ago we didn't have an airplane, now we almost got a man on mars
We got a telescope fixed up in the heavens taking mugshots of foreign stars
And I'll have to rock this joint and say that we've reached the boiling point

Nowadays, everything is exponential, the explosive stage of growth
Has arrived to ignite our next potential, be it good or bad, or both
Quoth the raven, "nevermore," but I don't believe that we'll stop
'Cause we've kissed the wall of the parabola, and we'll ride it to the top
And I'll have to rock this joint and say that we've reached the boiling point

Water boils at two hundred twelve degrees, but until it hits, it sits still
When the maelstrom comes, it comes all at once, so prepare yourselves to distill
But of other possibilities, I'm wonderin' if we've overlooked an equally opportune fate
For what a fine waste of water, dear, to just watch it evaporate
And I'll have to rock this joint and say that we've reached the boiling point
Track Name: I'm Never Gonna Die
In my life I've only seen my great-grandmother die
And the way folks just keep livin' on nowadays, I'm not a bit surprised
And though I know everybody's got to go at another time or some
I've made up my mind that I'm never gonna die

I'm not gonna die; I'm forever, I'm alive
Straight immune to every funeral tune, I ain't hip to all that jive
No bullet wound, no natural cause will cause me to subside
I'll never be a victim of death, because I'm never gonna die
I'm gonna stare down the barrel of the bucket, baby, but I ain't never gonna kick it
Watch the world raise hell until kingdom come, and present my admission ticket
Other tongues otherwise create their own demise
But I'm gonna look 'em in the face and cry, "I'm never gonna die"
I'm not gonna die; I won't give up the ghost
Just because a world of mortal souls insists that I'm supposed to
As for life's only certainty, I'm only too happy to deny
I walk in the direction that I point my eyes, and I'm never gonna die
Sweet adeline, it's time it's time I got gwine where I's gwine
Dig a hole to put the devil in and watch the sun set
While you sit out in the rain with your feets all soakin' wet
Make no mistake, I aim like Moses, I s'poses, or Rasputin
Or anybody else who put up a fight
I ain't gonna satisfy that other state of mind
I ain't never gonna die
Growin' old, you start to slow and say you just can't stay with it
But watch me now, while I cheat death and get away with it
There's another sucker born every second, doll, but I'll outlive 'em all
I hate to prophesy, but I'm never gonna die
I'm not gonna die; my sweet eternity is now
And righteous immortality, you've got my solemn vow
I am invincible, unconvinceable that my time is drawin' nigh
Here me say: I'm never gonna die
Track Name: Every Word Of The Letter
Well I've got vision, I can see, and I see deep into the past
I've been blinded by conformity, but I've broken from the cast
Satisfaction for the average will be shaken in the storm
And all those apathetic efforts won't be accepted as the norm

When reality comes rushin' and that feeble dam comes down
The leaven turns its trick and makes a man seek higher ground
I don't call for something crazy, I'm not dumb for something strange
I'm not the only one that knows that it's time to rearrange

And as I read every word of the letter
I'm crying loud for something better
So many sins are nice and vague, it's a trick to pin 'em all down
So many words are like a plague, every time they make a sound
But their sails are set for surrender, yes, they're sauntering towards death
'Cause their eyes are caked with capital, they got profit on their breath

It shouldn't come as any shock that they pander at your knees
'Cause they spect you're bound to stoop to their level by degrees
Yeah, such tantalizing treason can't be anything but right
Upon the serf it's open season, raise your rifles, set your sights

And as I read every word of the letter
I'm cryin' loud for something better
Your tongues fork like rivers and your mind's dull like a spoon
And you're searchin' for a butterknife to cauterize the wound
But your eyes roll in their sockets and you mouths are full of sand
And the way you bend to suggestion it's a wonder that you stand

You catch yourself attatched to anything but what you believe
Your surface isn't scratched, you don't think the way you see
And your gods are so unnatural, you buckle and you bust
And when the sun shines hotter, you just melt into the crust

And as I read every word of the letter
I'm cryin' loud for something better
There's a spotlight on the river from the forehead of the barge
It calls the quiet cavalry and it leads the creeping charge
But we disregard the spotlight and we're defeaned to the voice
Because we're reckless in our thinking and we're careless in our choice
Lord, I'm sick that I'm surrounded by the neon destitute
So I generalize and fool myself to speak in absolutes
But I'm not even tortured, I'm not even alone
I'm just some adolescent poet searchin' for the unknown

And as I read every word of the letter
I'm cryin' loud for something better
Track Name: It's Well That We're Here
Well the carriage moon shatters and spills on the dawn
And the silver-beaked raven flies on
Each broken-throat trumpet fires a blast of dispair
But they're strangled off thick through the air
False wisdom flows free on the glaze of the day
And you find you don't think what you say
Tidy rows of virtue in the garden of thought
Are choked hard by the weeds of smiling rot
The only captors now are the ones that we choose
Enlightened and learnéd we lose
Our stocks and our bonds are the ones we prefer
Satisfied, condemned, and deferred
Your air of attention all auctioned and set
Caught hard in the cloth of a butterfly net
The zenith of power is laid blank by the sun
And it's well that we're here to watch it get done

Wasn't there a time when a curse was a curse
When the words meant something and the thinkin' came first
When the walk of the lips matched the talk of the heart
And each sentence was true from finish to start
Now speech is pollution from our sewage tongues
And the jury of words is constantly hung
Reality's obscene and there ain't nothing sacred
And the hidden sublime is constantly naked
Images of purity bounce through the head
And the last wicked thought is the first thing said
Inspirative talk is just taken as token
And only what matters is left unspoken
Chatterbox noise sings loud like a bomb
It's got nothin' to say but we welcome it on
Our words are shot off like a child's cap gun
And it's well that we're here to watch it get done

The golden livestock has returned from the past
And explodes in a mind's-eye blast
And your brain just curdles and rots in the heat
You don't think; you're too easy to beat
You'll buy any vision and bow down to a bust
While the medium just whispers to us
On the highwater rail with a tack in your thumb
Blind to the front where the track is undone
Travelin' salesmen on a worldwide scale
Pannin' that river, tellin' their tales
With a phony rose scent and a dizzy-eyed sell
They'll give you a grin with your hell
They want into your head, they want you to be poor
They don't want anybody to think anymore
There's gold to be made at the price of everyone
And it's well that we're here to watch it get done

Noble-throne cowards sowing their seeds
Curtaining the truth of their deeds
While sky-rise castles can't handle the claims
Of every peasant holding a frame
The jester stands proud with an outstretched hand
To take with a gutless demand
The only sucker now, sitting outside the door
Can't find anybody to be taken to court
Watch the pockets dry up like Okemah wells
As the guppies still think of themselves
While the big fish dine, it's smiles all around
Bottoms up, aces high on the town
Recycled selfish suits offered free in return
Threaded like needles, swelled up like a burn
Mother Goose is gonna have their facts out on the run
And it's well that we're here to watch it get done

Balsa-wood facades tell character tales
And skyrocket personality sales
Cigarettes and sunglasses manufacture attitude
While a hundred million more go unshoed
The question of Pilate they don't wanna wrestle
But there's truth in every vessel
Concerned about face in a crowd so inane
Is a dreadful mistake in this pinball game
Disguised and deified and all rearranged
They find now that nothing has changed
They don't know what to do when their pyramid comes
Long forgotten the place that they're from
You can grin for the cameras, you can fake for the shows
But you're redeliberating the mask that you chose
Without crucified pride, we haven't yet begun
And it's well that we're here to watch it get done

Accelerated visions of work left undone
Find a finger aimed at the seventh son
When the lens of disaster has focused its toll
They'll blame it all on a lonesome soul
And seet clichés remain all the same
The least likely takes all of the blame
With a shifty-eyed kingdom, nobody seems to know
Who's paying for their ticket after the show
A million-odd people take place in the deed
And a scapegoat is all that they need
You can see those backbones made out of clay
Saturated slick to this day
When roll call comes in a room full of shame
Not one man will answer the sound of his name
Somebody has to die and it's us against one
And it's well that we're here to watch it get done

Mama, where've you hidden that backdoor key?
I'm stuck out in the open, they're coming for me
I'll raise up the white flag if you think it best
Bid a dry farewell and live dead like the rest
The battle is a-ragin' and it's got to be won
And we can't be alone to watch it get done
And we gotta be alone to watch it get done
Track Name: I Can't Be Convinced
Allow me to examine thee, thy broken mindset waiting for a fix
I think you'll find philosophy a delicious, inconsistent meretrix
And as I diagnose, please abandon every post
And regard the telling tales of history
With curdled eyes and self-demise, I've come to frown and dramatize
Each innocuous moment of my life
And every banner of the past, to me, stands at half-empty mast
Every last word draws attention to my strife
And of course, alone I feel this, though I boast myself a realist
Defining life in terms of Achilles' heels

But I can't be so convinced to so pretend
That I'm a pessimist until the very end

Gatherin' gigs of information, seekin' out soporific facts
Evidenced by an imperfected sense
Strippin' down the sacred town to uncontested, bared essential
Central proof to pronounce the layin' hen
Dead last behind the egg, and then the soup, primordial as the foster mom
The chicken coop of existence

But I can't be so convinced to so pretend
That I'm a positivist until the very end

On puppet strings and pendulum swingsets: every son and daughter
Singing empires of carpenters and kings
Whose pretuned voices have no chords to wage the frequency of war
Except the few for that they are chosen for
And I'm deaf to tones of free will spoke indicative of soulful choice
Some stubborn stone lodged in my idiodynamic throne

But I can't be so convinced to so pretend
That I'm a determinist until the very end

Or deeming one the chosen son by blood and guts and holy ruts
Worn deep into the huts of hoipalloic minds
Tradition's rag works twice as hard to polish the unnatural birthright, marred
Dissolving flaws into a cosmetic shine
Who sits and watches while the miles of peasants file by and say,
"Yes, m'Lord. All to thee, for thine."

But I can't be so convinced to so pretend
That I'm a monarchist until the very end

In the spirit here of sharing, dear, I'll prech in sweet delirium
Of platinum-plated theories born to die
What's yours is mine, what's mine is yours, even though I've put no labor towards
This capitol you'd like to propertize
And this is true utopia, my layman friend, we've reached the end
Your legal tender, let us ration and decide

But I can't be so convinced to so pretend
That I'm a communist until the very end

As a rabid fan of consolidation, I'm watching all the nation's wealth
Pulsing towards a pathetic one percent
The global scale weighs no different as the rich get better
And a growing class of debters begs the question
Is it subatomic force and fate which make it all consolidate?
Or does business sense make the world go hence?

But I can't be so convinced to so pretend
That I'm a capitalist until the very end

In a cynicistic cloud I'm seeing every institution speak
In a mix of unsuccessful tricks and rhetoric
And I have no faith in corporation, damn the woes of organization
Desolate, my self-justifiding place
And I see no light and feel no fight, I'm so impressed with hopelessness
The only promise I await is in my grave

But I can't be so convinced to so pretend
That I'm a nihilist until the very end

And as these "isms" stake their claims I watch the others taking aim
To knock their feigned foundations to the ground
For all the worth of human words, I'm watching great ideas blurred
And hearing the massive, mortal girth of opinion sound
And all these hoaxes in their camps brandish one same rubber stamp:
"Scientific," though every stance is graveyard bound

For convictions, prisons, block the door for everything laid on the floor
More dangerous than lies, Friedrich found
And I don't believe a word that I've said
I put my faith in stuff unwritten and unread
So count your chickens before they've had their fun
And I'll let you know when my shell has come undone
Having stepped on ground where other men have stood
I can't be convinced of anything but good
Track Name: Convention Is Crumbling
Frescoed fire adorns the prison walls
Calls ring loud as the fortress falls
Hammered hard on the road of flight
Banished blind out into the night
The siren sounds will never meet
The fated fortunes of the fleet
You listless pistons will never get in
Because convention, my darling, is crumbling again

Time-honored smiths with celebrated smiles
Compile medallions rendered worthless in awhile
The moneyed gums produce a polished mediocre
Bluffing bold with every hand of poker
And at the foot of every bed
The gargoyle grins and spins his head
Dislogic, lush with any win
But convention, my darling, is crumbling again

Deperate daisies, naked in the fields
Some sacred paton, cutting countless deals
Resilient guerillas at the fore
Reduced to monkeys and ushered to the door
And the chimeras turn their hands
Unto the dancers of demand
The horizon, apocalypse akin
Because convention, my darling, is crumbling again

Each cycled serpent, resistant to rebirth
Swims like lead through the liquid earth
Easy pleasin' only goes so far
Poetic pap, cries the current lonely bard
The weathered oar succumbs to stroke
The tired traditions fit to choke
Stubborn steel, resistant to the bend
But convention, my darling, is crumbling again

One moustached cabbage, blindfolded by desire
Surrendered saints sit bobbing in the mire
Dejected jester, withered in the weeds
Sweet Eli sings the song of three
And every marching puppy knows
The varied values of the shows
But the baker, bothered by the wind
Can see that convention is crumbling again

One whispering soul, spinning in the mills
Condemnéd thought caught thumbing through the bills
Drums, drums in the deep
Contageous council in the house you keep
The lantern spills a succoured glow
Into the havens of the know
The radiating silence, midst the din
Should tell you convention is crumbling again

The fired pirates sing unto the sun
Faced with traces of another hallowed hun
Birdseed sacrilege adorns the sallow serf
Baroque barnyards battle for their turf
The silent waging rages wild
Inside the eyeballs of a child
His minted interest grows into a grin
But convention, my darling, is crumbling again

Cry salvation as they're heading for the wreck
Dispose a million as they introduce the next
Turnin' over like a water mill
From the foam right back into the spill
Resonating through the ears
Of a people loud, so no one hears
The chords of truth, muted midst the sin
And convention, my darling, is crumbling again

Sweet mercies seek through the tolling tongues
Through ceaseless crows of confusion hung
Alabaster casts the cathedral crash
And introduces the dawn of day at last
Headless horsemen on the skirts
Search for the heavens in the dirt
Their tattered saddles won't have time to mend
Because convention, my darling, is crumbling again
Track Name: A Million Times Tired
Mass invention blew a million more
Wasted creations to the public door
A million more things I could never use
I wanna waste my time, I gotta pick and choose and I'm tired

Marketing schemes from a million companies
Intend to invent a million images for me
A million products that I have to buy
And a million services I have to try and I'm tired

Ah, mama, don't let me drift off to sleep
These maniac messiahs give me madman's dreams
Because they speak like lightning with their rocket speech
And they slowly pressure me to believe

A million suggestions playing musical chairs
A million full houses beat a million pairs
A million guitars play wasted tunes
And a million sunsets break a million moons and I'm tired

One million sweepstakes giveaways
A million advertisements all night and day
A million gimmicks in a million molds
A million stories told and left untold and I'm tired

Ah, mama, don't let me drift off to sleep
Don't wanna live somebody else's fantasy
There's still a million more thoughts I wanna think
But they offer me their cup and force me to drink

I've got a madness runnin' 'round my brain
Offered up to me by the corporate train
Ideas implicated by tyrannic airwaves
Empty-headed boxes hold a billion slaves and I'm tired

I've got a new school of fascism in my face
A universal decree of what is now okay
Shovellin' trends to the public trust
And all laid prey to the moth and rust and I'm tired

Ah, mama, don't let me drift off to sleep
I'm levelled by a storm of mediocrity
Too many people settle too many don't try
Too many saw through the ice and fish for alibis

Let me think 'til I'm hungry let me summon the nerve
To work until I'm weary and take what I deserve
Don't wanna feel innoculated from the absence of these
Don't want a brain-dead body try to make me believe that I'm tired
Track Name: Almost Free
By 1910, I was ready to start again
I was just a fraction of a lesser man
Lord, I was weathered well beyond my years
Just a victim of circumstatial fears

Lord, I used to be so very old
I used to think there was so much to know
But knowledge is just a stepping stone
And halfway worthless when it's on its own

Each new creation fit to serve a soul
Offers another dose of desolation row
Every new pop trend absorbs another brain
Energy wasted down the entertainment drain

Mistakes abound, parade as policy
Currency worshipped by a peasant sea
Doctrines of death all abundant as the breeze
Guessing jesters don the guise of expertise

It's a mystery, it is a forest fire
Selected voices from a demon choir
You can hear 'em sing

Twice as young as I was before
Just an apple reborn from the core
All my mistakes project a pleasant ring
I know enough to know I don't know a thing

Saving grace outside the open door
And I don't believe the evil I deplore
To understand is to satisfy
It's such a freedom to know I'll never die

And I'm almost free
I'm almost free