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"If you never buy another indie album this year, this would be the one to get. "Angels on the Road" is a CD for those musical and lyrical purists in the world. It's an understated piece of brilliance... by one of the best songwriters in the indie world." -- www.independentsongwriter.com

  Angels on the Road was recorded in the Fall of 1996 when an anonymous "Angel" funded the project (and provided funding for further work and freeing me up from more mundane ways of making a living). Again, recorded by Lloyd Salisbury at his 8-track  Flat Rock Studios in Moosup, CT.   (Yeah, that's the real name of the town.)

Dubbed "The Loose Associations," the band consisted of Mike Fischman on mandolin, classical & electric guitar, Kurt Meyer on fretless and bowed bass, Vinnie Pasternak on violin, viola, electric guitar, eggs, and percussion, Steve Tavares on drums and percussion, and Lloyd Salisbury on electric guitar and tambourine. 

One of the more pleasurable sessions, we recorded everything in three days with a couple of songs that didn't make the CD (there's 15 songs already on it!), one or three takes per track, and mixed the thing in a few days.   Two or three overdubs (not my vocals), and we were done.

Mastered by David Correia at Celebration Sound.

photo: Kerstin Zettmar

One of these Days

napoleon was an ape man
and he rode the wild west
along the riviera
to the sea
and it took the lives of eight men
just to get it off his chest
till he finally found a place
he could get free

did you know someone like that
hey man
did you know someone like that

i'm so sick and tired
of the world we live in
a family tree of
desperate men and
desperate women
one of these days
were gonna have to stop
this killin
all that matters now is
are you willin

daddy was a juggler
and a hypnotist by trade
but he could not hold the dollar
in his hand
and his life it passed before him
in an ordinary way
though he loved as much
as any other man

did you know someone like that
hey man
did you know someone like that

maybe you got a lot of
god blessed money and maybe
you spend your life just
getting by
you got as much right
as anybody
and nothin at all you
got to justify

alien being
can't believe a thing
he's seeing
advertises in the
local paper
for someone who knows that
all of life is sacred
and all is what you make it
and true love never dies
unless the lovers break it

do you know someone like that
hey baby
do you know someone like that

you could meet me on the banks
down by the river
you could meet me underneath
the evening sky
one of these days
i know we'll be delivered
its only just a question now
of time

copyright jp jones 1979, 1996
july 19


69er Diner

he was cruisin down the highway
lookin for a bite to eat
it was two thirty in the mornin
and he felt like somethin sweet
he spied a restaurant parked out
on route 69
he pulled into that diner
and proceeded to dine

the waitress was in nylons
and wore lipstick on her lips
she had a straw stuck in her soda
and she spoke between her sips
and as she wiped the counter
she began to sing a song
and a voice from in the back room
began to sing along

nothin could be finer
than the 69er Diner
in the mornin
when the highway numbs you
and your hunger overcomes you
in the night

she said, i suppose you'd like
to see a dish
that isn't in the book
if it isn't on the menu we can fix it
with the cook
and then she snapped her gum at him
in the green fluorescent light
and smiled as warm as a polar bear
on christmas night

he said, i'm a little short on cash
and smiled real nice
she said, you must be kidding
but i got some free advice
love is made of money, honey,
and my heart is made of ice
and when you're in the market, man,
you got to pay the price
then suddenly a strange smile
slid across her face
she said, perhaps we can feed your need
if you don't mind the taste
we got everything in the pantry, boy,
except the kitchen sink
just remember when you order, dear,
you are just what you think

he said, i appreciate your thoughtfulness
but one things disturbs me a little
i don't feel all that comfortable
when people talk in riddles
she said, you think you'd feel all that good
if they just out and spilled the beans?
maybe you'd better come with me
for a look behind the scenes

and as she led him to the kitchen
she whispered something strange
no one's ever free
until they see they are in chains
he was just about to ask her
what that's supposed to mean
as she pushed him through the swinging
doors they were swallowed by the steam

and as the fog began to lift
he heard her voice close and low
introducing relatives of hers
who ran the show
that's my dad behind the apron, she said
he's spent his whole life in the kitchen
he's not exactly hen-pecked
though he is a little chicken

they call my cousin antoinette
like she runs a guillotine
they call my husband sir
cause he's a full-time ex-marine
they call my brother bright
but to me he can't hold a candle
we can call the whole thing off
if it gets too hot to handle
when she snapped her fingers
both her sisters
stripped down to the shorts
and jumped up on the stainless steel sink
and did a minstrel show of sorts
she said, we farm em out to entertain
at all the local resorts
and they're a naked success
by all available reports

then she showed him out to the booths
where he noticed freaks of every kind
there were priests and poets and presidents
strung out down the line
there were lumberjacks and beauty queens
that even the past had left behind
she said, if they don't look so sharp to you
at least they got no ax to grind

and there were ants who danced in the floorboards
and flies who buzzed in german
there were wasps who stung out
at everyone who hung out
there was gesticulating vermin
there was a hermit crab on the tv set
giving a final sign-off sermon
he croaked, nothin matters anyway
since it's all been pre-determined

now i was sitting in a corner booth
working on this tune
i'd revised the lines so many times
i was running out of room
the situation was desperate
and i saw no escape
i had to pull something out of my hat
to make the whole scene take shape

so i had him come over to my table
and look me in the face
he said, of all the tragedies i seen tonight
this one's the biggest waste
and there were real tears in his eyes
as he whispered, is there nothin
we can do? and she said,
the only reason you feel like feeding him
is cause a hunger eating you

he collapsed back to the counter then
shuddering with fright
she said, you know, i've reconsidered
after what you've been through tonight
now if you still think it's a
dog-eat-dog world out there
you're welcome to a bite
he said, thanks just the same,
but i've lost my appetite

and with those words she kissed him
on the cheek and sent him on his way
he was walking across the parking lot
as night was dying into day
and from the cafe door she yelled,
you're welcome back anytime you feel
there's starvation on the highway
and you're asleep at the wheel

copyright jp jones 1975, 1992, 2009
1973, vineyard haven


Pest from the West

don't go along with the usual thing
always seem to want more than the market will bring
i'm the light in your eyes and the shadow of doubt
a part of the heart of the art ya left out
i can hear the beat of another drum ring
i'm a thorn in the side of a comfortable man
i'm a pest from the west
who is makin his stand

you throw up your hands and tell me to lay off
i keep comin back lookin for the pay-off
yeah you can run but you cannot hide
there's a couple of things that you still haven't tried
i'll be around when you tire of the trade off
yes i'm impressed with the stuff i been shown
i'm a pest from the west
with mind of his own

you're gonna get calls and you're gonna get letters
you gave it your all but you still could do better
put a bag on your head and your thumbs in your ears
you're gonna hear about it for a million years
and i won't give up until we're together
come pretty close a couple time or two
i'm a pest from the west
and i'm comin for you

it's a mighty long climb to the coming attractions
everybody dyin for a piece of the action
you got the sun on your face and the wind to your back
and a whole lot of nerve to be cryin like that
i'm a hold out for the satisfaction
when all your tears have turned into stone
i'm the pest from the west
who won't leave you alone

copyright jp jones 1987, 2004


Peggy's Song

i know it was a crazy spring
the time you did that desperate thing
the rain just kept on fallin
on your roof
you hadn't seen the sun in weeks
is it that the darkness speaks
or is it that in ringing out your heart
you found the truth?

they said let us spare us no expenses
to bring her to her senses
just as if you could change the tenses
of your heart
then they locked you in a room of white
to bring you to their sacred light
but you just kept on running
in your madness through the dark

as for me i only wished i'd said
the words that clattered in my head
but like i said, fear had sealed my jaws
now i'd like just to be a mirror
that you might see yourself the clearer
maybe even hear the sound of
your own heart's applause

so let the righteous ones complain
she doesn't love she is insane
after all these years she left him
with no wife
it's fear that's made them blind and squeezed
out all their possibilities
but you just go ahead and
keep on running for your life

copyright jp jones 1974, 1993, 2010


Mona Lisa

i love the way that you walk
i love the way that you talk
i love everything that you do
you got me feelin so fine
i don't even mind
playin the fool
i seen lovers come
i seen lovers go
and i know what
lovers can do
i get down on my knees
for the mona lisa
but she aint got nothin on you

now dante loved his beatrice
said. i only have eyes for you
he said he went through hell and back
for her
thought i don't know if that's
historically true
they say i can swing
they say i can sing
but i know how to follow through
i get down on my knees
for the mona lisa
but she aint got nothin on you

somebody's got your number
somebody holds a key
somebody loves ya
more than ever you figured
i wonder who that someone could be

you got a smile like a holiday
a heart for the highway
and eyes with an ocean view
you got thirteen ways of
lookin at the blackbird
seventeen shades of blue
and the critics'll love ya
but not like i love ya
you know what i'm sayin is true
i get down on my knees
for the mona lisa
but she aint got nothin on you

copyright jp jones 1980, 1997


Atlantis Revisited

like a thousand diamonds
tossed across the sea
the city stretched forever
sheltering her free
the glory of her future
the beauty in her day
a hurricane of innocence and hope
but the winds came up and
blew it all away

the prophet in the hill looked out
remembering a time
when killing was a way of life
and freedom was a crime
and his voice he did raise
in thanksgiving and praise
for the grace they had come to find
he kissed his lips to his fingertips
as the winds came up and
blew it all away

lovers laughing in the dusk
upon the evening train
she says i love you all the stars above
he says i need you like the rain
if we lose it all tomorrow
we will dream it up again
and they fell asleep in each others arms
as the winds came up and
blew it all away

william walked up dreamer street
when something caught his eye
he checked his watch as if to take
a reading of the sky
his business thrived and he loved his wife
and his garden came alive
he was walking home with the rose he'd grown
as the winds came up and
blew it all away

sammy never did fit in
a drifter born to lose
he always had a childish grin
he always sang the blues
he was traveling in another country then
when he heard it in the news
where was that girl that he loved so long ago when the winds came up and
blew it all away

running through a city night
i saw the promise flash
from world to world to every heart
that ever had to ask
a light rain fell on the corner at my feet
where my love and i would meet
i was reaching out to take her hand
when the winds came up and
blew it all away

my eyes opened up to a darkened world
my face was hot and damp
i found myself on borrowed time
and rose to light my lamp
what dream is this to make me cry
for some forgotten day
it would make a story so beautiful and true but the winds came up and
blew it all away

copyright jp jones 1985, 2002


Biodegradable Romance

my love is strong
and cold as steel
she's as gentle as the wind
against my face
she comes to me
when she needs me
when she leaves me
she hardly leaves
a trace

she's true to herself
when she is with me
she's true
to truth itself
when she is gone
there's a fire in her eyes
like a sunset
her mind is as empty
as the dawn

everything you learn
is just a memory
nothing that you see
or touch
will last
my love
doesn't ask for answers
she's a dancer in the present
and a stranger
to the past

copyright jp jones 1974, 1991, 2008


Roll Me Over

the sign was magic
i was born in
i haven't yet begun to fight
i get it comin like a christmas morning
i must be doin something right

i threw it all away and hit the highway
i'll meet you further up around the bend
i gave it everything
i did it my way
roll me over and i'll do it again

hold on, where's ya get these numbers
you wanna see a little trick i learned
i can start a fire in a heart of darkness
that never goes out
and nobody gets burned


where do our bodies get this motion
we fit together like a hand in glove
i could be a prophet
if i got the notion
you could show em all
a thing or two about love

you never mind about
all their warnings
you know the answer
when the feeling's right
you get it comin like a christmas morning
the looser ya plays it
the more it gets tight

i threw it all away and hit the highway...

copyright jp jones 1985, 2002


Holy Rolling Moment

i got twenty seven monkeys
who can read and write
a machine to do my thinkin
and a psychic satellite
i could sell my soul to satan
but i can't buy a job

got some books about it
it can't be that tough
through em out the window
when i had enough howl at the stars
negotiate with god

in this holy rolling moment
where i live and breathe
in this holy rolling moment
where i bleed
in this holy rolling moment
where i do believe
in this holy rolling moment
on my knees

the telephone is ringin
and there's knockin on the door
i feel so good i'm singin
as i crawl across the floor
someone shoulda taken photos
of the river i cried

i got friends in higher places
and a fried egg on a roll
front line season tickets
to the super duper bowl
i know ya couldn't help it
and i hope you're satisfied


so tie me to the side
of a big balloon
drop me in the chamber
and shoot the moon
kick it through the wicket
and stick it where the sun
don't shine

now don't ya fret about it
i must be havin fun
someone's gotta stay behind
and someone's gotta run
meet ya a little up further
on down the line

in this holy rolling moment
where i take my leave
in this holy rolling moment
where i bleed
in this holy rolling moment
honey please
in this holy rolling moment
on my knees

copyright jp jones 1991, 2008
january 17


Five White Ducks

five white ducks
on the lake today
laughing and quacking
and yakking away
man those ducks
got a lot to say
five white ducks
on the lake today

pretty girls
they do grow old
some were shy
and some were bold
some are true
so i've been told
my girl she's as
good as gold

big white cloud
in a sky of blue
there's no tellin
what he will do
why does he make me
think of you
big white cloud
in a sky of blue

man made mountains
falling down
shattered dreamers
all around
love shall surely
come to down
build it back up
from the ground

one fly on my coffee cup
my dreams can not
be used up
one for love and
one for luck
one fly on my
coffee cup

so this old world
looks blue today
angels weep
where orphans play
i'm a million miles
five white ducks
on the lake

copyright jp jones 1989, 2006


Blues Hospital

once upon a time
was a man with a fiddle
everybody knew him
as a Little John Little
had a little problem
so they had to lock him
listen to the rain fall
listen to the wind blow
listen to the man standin
in the window
playin like he might shine
night time into

everything is easy
when they say you're crazy
they can do whatever they have
half a mind for
now how do you like
your blue-eyed baby?
Johnny don't fiddle for the
blues hospital
no more

everybody knows when a
man goes mental
doesn't matter much
if he was kind or gentle
gotta get him back
to the fact
of how things are
isn't it a shame
and isn't it a pity?
lordy and to think
how he could play so pretty
healin with a feelin
but you really can
go too far

never was a match
for the competition
money don't love ya honey
when you're poor
heaven have mercy
on the man with a mission
Johnny don't fiddle
for the blues hospital
no more

everybody said he was
a little bit moody
everybody said he oughta
do his duty
get a wife
get a life
get a grip
get a real job
now things're back to normal
and the ward is quiet
people shuffle up and down
and don't deny it
Little John Little
gone to play that fiddle
for God

Johnny don't take no medication
Johnny don't wake up on the floor
Johnny don't take no blue vacation
Johnny don't fiddle
for the blues hospital
no more

copyright jp jones 1994
august 13


Body and Soul

she's just a little girl
in a world of her own
she's all of the women
i've ever known
i don't know why she
cares for me
but she does
just because
because i'm her baby
i feel like a man
if she tells me i can do it
i feel like i can
i do my best
and thank the stars above
for her love

she gives me
all her love
my baby gives me all her love
yeah, she gives me
all her love
body and soul
you know

my baby and me
and the moon to the right
the three of us sailing
down the highway
at night
she knows how to make
a jealous man
she takes my mind
star in the window
log on the fire
there's no end
to my baby's desire
there's no end
to the story her love
tells and tells and tells


dawn paints the trees
on our window again
sky red and purple
crows on the wind
i wake up with her
lyin in my arms
close and warm
and i say
good mornin baby
how ya do today?
maybe it'll go on
forever this way
maybe she and me
was meant to be
i give her

all my love
i give my baby
all my love
you know i give her
all my love
body and soul
you know

copyright jp jones 1977, 1994


The Crossroads Where I Stand

far across the river
lightning flickers in the air
dogs bark, street kids play
in the electric atmosphere
there's a smell of rain upon the night
distant thunder on the breeze
like shelling on the outskirts
of a city under siege
the street lamps burn like flares
and the voices drift like sand
against the darkness closing in
at the crossroads where i stand

the girl who runs this rooming house
plays solitaire on her bed
she takes me for the king of hearts
she takes herself for dead
while my neighbors across the alley
casually engage in sin
waiting for the apocalypse
or their parents to drop in
and they don't see the banners
or the parade and marching band
passing beneath their window tonight
at the crossroads where i stand

marylin is a natural
she was born to reach the stage
it must be in her planets
or the stars that rule the age
she says she's captive of the dragons
all her lines are so schematic
i'd rescue her from her innocence
but i don't feel that dramatic
she sits up way past her bedtime
and dreams of foreign lands
but princes are in short supply
at the crossroads where i stand

my guru is expected soon
arriving on the evening stage
we'll all know him when we see him
in his shark skin suit and shades
i guess that's just the price you pay
after all these years
for sitting on your honesty
and standing on your ears
and i got no bone to pick with anyone
who hasn't even yet appeared
since every face i see tonight
looks a little weird

the handsome child prodigy
left school suddenly
with a classic case of knowledge
in a bachelor's degree
and now he drives a taxi
and says these words repeatedly:
the closer that i get to folks
the more they look like me
and he lives with a graduate student
of absolute reality and
the cold hard facts of the way
things really are
at the crossroads where i stand

the village Venus de Milo
rarely every speaks
being armless herself she understands
the harmlessness of freaks
and to every love-starved romeo
who before her feet does kneel
she smiles a smile of solitude
and things she can't reveal
and when i asked her for an answer
she dropped her mirror in the sand
and left me here to face myself
at the crossroads where i stand

the trio from the city
was assaulted night before last
by a classical evangelist
who couldn't stomach all that jazz
and he busted up the party
till the harmony patrol
busted in and busted him
for insufficient soul
and now the music is all piped in
and the laughter all is canned
it just doesn't pay to play too far outside
at the crossroads where i stand

there's a cocktail waitress down the road
who rarely gets a tip
she's real good at forgiving folks
for giving her the slip
and i know she's got more customers
but what i don't quite understand
is how she manages the pace
with all this change upon her hands
if you look deep enough into her eyes
you see the face of every man
who's taken more than he paid her for
at the crossroads where i stand

upstairs in the classrooms
the professor keeps his pets
three metaphors, twelve adjectives
and a herd of space cadets
and after the daily lessons
he leads them to his room
where they dance around
a dictionary and howl at the moon
but the faces fade before him
and the years slip through his hand
it's the price he's paid to make the grade
at the crossroads where i stand

at the Hotel Lost Horizons

lives the fisherman and his seeing-eye wife
and the architect who goes to bed
with the blue-prints of his wife
and the faceless traveling salesman
and the mayor's mistress, too
and the girl who sleeps with a bible
and the light on in her room
and though the house is made of cards
nobody calls a hand
since all the walls are paper thin
at the crossroads where i stand

my one true love is faithless
there's no end to her restlessness
there's no end to the things that she can doubt;

she's a bit like me i guess
and i see her on every corner
and hear her name on the wind
and time doesn't really cure a thing
it only rubs it in
so i stand on tiptoe in this crowd
and search these faces once again
to see if maybe she's not here too
at the crossroads where i stand

went to see the doctor
to get the critics off my back
she said take two hits of this remedy
and in the morning call a quack
when i said, but it's all been said before
she just snapped my BVD's
and said, go and speak in headlines
and wear your secrets on your sleeves
you can speak in the tongues of angels
you can speak in the tongues of man
but the truth only speaks for itself
at the crossroads where i stand

so the night has swallowed up the streets
the stars are clear and cold
words and time and love itself
are all beyond control
above the sleepy rooftops
my solitude takes wings
that lift me high above the pain
of naming all these things
and soon i will be fast asleep
in the palm of god's own hand
as the morning sun bursts once again
at the crossroads where i stand

copyright jp jones 1976, 1993, 2010


Because of You

in the days when darkness flowed
i lay crippled on the road
like a stranger
in a foreign land
though everyone else
passed me by
as you can see i
did not die
because of you
who dared to lend a hand

i lost the world
i lost my soul
i lost my mind
lost control
had to lost it all
to see the light
in the early hours
of the morn
i gladly died
and was reborn
because of you
who saw me through
my might

so my heart is full
of joy and pain
like wine running
in my vein
a song of praise
to the heavens above
i sing because
my heart is true
i sing because
the sky is blue
i sing
because of you
who gave me love

copyright jp jones 1975, 1992, 2009


Lover's farewell

blue skies above you
the whole earth to love you
the sun and the wind and the rain
someone to know you
in all that you go through
to see you in joy and through pain
this is all I ask as I leave you
may all your prayers
and all your dreams
come true

travel in safety
see all you can see
go where your spirit leads you
have treasures unspoken
faith that's unbroken
a heart that is open and true
and may your nights of loneliness be few
may all your prayers
and all your dreams
come true

you know I will miss you
my love goes with you
whenever we may be apart
I give you a song for
all that you long for
all the desires of your heart
may everything that's beautiful to you
may all your prayers
and all your dreams
come true

copyright jp jones 1976, 1993, 2010



Music and performances 2016 JP Jones. Publishing   2016 Vision Company Records. All Rights reserved.