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Only The Now

by Tom Robinson

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1.
Hey pretty David I'm so glad you made it Come sit over here in the light Sorry the setting is kind of depressing But I need a favour tonight That laughs & parties were good while they lasted But now that it's time to move on I need a friend who can tie up some ends Tomorrow I'm gonna be gone Goodbye to London, so long to St Mary's I only wish I could have stayed You nephews and nieces I love you to pieces But let's just call it a day Goodbye you ravers, you movers and shakers You lovers and brothers I've known Kiss me goodnight as you switch out the light Cos I'm going home in the morning My Rolex and phone are right there on the table The keys to my car and the flat Cut up my credit cards, pay off the milkman Recycle the bills on the mat The Boss and Armani are yours if you want em Just stick all the rest in a sack Then drop the whole lot at the charity shop Tell the neighbours I'm not coming back Goodbye to London, so long to St Mary's...etc Shred all my letters and burn all the polaroids Throw my old mags in the trash Empty the treasure chest under my bed And flush every crumb in my stash Swear on your life that you'll wipe my hard drive Smash any backups you find No need for my mother to ever discover The life I'm leaving behind Goodbye to London, so long to St Mary's I only wish I could have stayed You nephews and nieces I love you to pieces But let's just call it a day Goodbye you ravers, you movers and shakers You lovers and brothers I've known Kiss me goodnight as you switch out the light Cos I'm going home in the morning
2.
Merciful God 03:06
Fat white maggots with their fat white faces Crawling all over God's holy places Smoke glass windows, aircon coaches Spewing out locusts, spewing out roaches God is merciful, God is just Why mind dying if he says we must I'm not frightened, I'm not fearful I'm doing the job God put me here for Preaching democracy & Gentle Jesus They lie and bully us, bomb and bleed us Help our enemies slay our brothers Kill our children & murder our mothers God is merciful, God is just Why mind dying if he says we must I'm not frightened, I'm not tearful I'm doing the job God put me here for Fat white maggots, all blind and bloated Like their reality sugarcoated There's only one language - they understand And that's when the bodyparts hit the fan God is merciful, God is just Why mind dying if he says we must I'm not frightened, I'm quite cheerful Doing the job God put me here for
3.
My daddy did his articles in 1954 When he began soliciting the work stuck in his craw Enforcing for the bourgeoisie he very quickly saw There's one law for the rich and another one for the poor Rebekah's evil empire protected her in court The Shredder lives in luxury his evil deeds have bought But Doreen Lawrence had to wait for 18 years and more There's one law for the rich and another one for the poor The mighty sword of Justice stands high above us all All citizens stand equal before her mighty laws But even mighty Justice has one almighty flaw There's one law for the rich and another one for the poor Our leader meet in secret behind a thick blue line When cops protect the wealthy the cost is yours and mine They infiltrated Occupy and crippled them with fine There's one law for the 1%, and another for the 99 The mighty sword of Justice stands high above us all All citizens stand equal before her mighty laws But even mighty Justice has one almighty flaw There's one law for the rich and another one for the poor Now Justice wears a coronet - but Justice is a whore She puts out for rich gentlemen who love to pay her court And kicks away the crutches from beggars at her door There's one law for the rich and another one for the poor The mighty sword of Justice stands high above us all All citizens stand equal before her mighty laws But even mighty Justice has one almighty flaw There's one law for the rich and another one for the poor
4.
I still remember first meeting you when You were a small blond kid about nine or ten Your mother went missing and your father drank For your first real home you had an aunt to thank You came to stay when you were still quite young You had mischievous eyes and a razorsharp tongue Life has its interludes and this was one As we'd pretend for the weekend you were our son We used to pick you up when you were feeling blue Take you out to the movies & the circus too But nothing's forever and it couldn't last We had our own baby, and the moment passed If you felt betrayed, boy, you hid it well But when I think back now I feel guilty as hell You hit the bottle when you hit your teens Became runaway jailbait for chicken queens CHORUS Don't jump, don't fall - there's a world of love out there & you can have it all I must admit it must've seemed like fun The kind of life you lived when you were on the run The tricks you turned, and the drugs you'd done As you scraped the barrel with your lowlife chums You were always so certain you'd never see thirty. When you called collect to talk drunk & dirty A restless aching deep within And the pain of inhabiting a human skin CHORUS Don't jump, don't fall - here's a world of love out there & you could have it all Don't jump, don't fall - standing on that balcony, your back against a wall You must have been shaking with a terrible dread As you climbed unsteady from your unmade bed. Did you feel relief or did you just feel numb To know your moment had finally come When you left the flat on that final night. Did you lock the door, did you leave the light Did you think of her, did you think of me Or did you simply think you were about to be free The alcohol raging round your veins The black depression pouring down like rain I pray to God by every holy name, My own sweet children never know that pain CHORUS Don't jump, don't fall - here's a world of love out there & you could have it all Don't jump, don't fall - standing on that balcony, your back against a wall Don't jump.
5.
Holy Smoke 03:30
My father's in the kitchen My mother's making tea My sister's sitting stitching My brother's dungarees My grandad's in the attic Some aunts & uncles too I'm shattered and erratic There's one thing left to do Ripping out and rolling up the scriptures The fire of Isiah makes me choke Inhaling Revelations and Creation 2000 years of wisdom up in smoke I like to smoke the bible It makes a crazy toke Those wafer paper pages Go up in holy smoke The wrath of God will find me My friends and neighbours say But I get high divinely My sins are blown away Ripping out and rolling up the scriptures The fire of Isiah makes me choke Inhaling Revelations and Creation 2000 years of wisdom up in smoke Up in smoke You like to smoke the bible It makes a crazy toke Those wafer paper pages Go up in holy smoke The wrath of God will find you My saints and angels say But me, I'm right behind you Your sins are blown away Ripping out and rolling up the scriptures The fire of Isiah makes me choke Inhaling Revelations and Creation 2000 years of wisdom up in smoke Ripping out and rolling up the scriptures The fire of Isiah makes me choke Inhaling Revelations and Creation 2000 years of wisdom up in smoke
6.
Brown eyes and blue jeans and gut-churning beauty Your crimson dominion of shame The needles are in me - the demons within me Cry out and remember your name Speeding the freeway - and recklessly riding Strung out at the end of my chain The floodwaters rise - at the turn of the tide I'll cry out and remember your name Cry out - cry out Strung out at the end of my chain Cry out - cry out Cry out and remember your name Angel of darkness, sweet Lord of Oblivion I worship again and again (I was…) Born to adore you, to fall down before you Cry out and remember your name Sobbing & shaking please let me be taken Tonight in the dark driving rain Out in the trees when I'm down on my knees I'll cry out and remember your name Cry out - cry out I worship again & again Cry out - cry out Cry out and remember your name God knows I've feared you - but now that I'm near you That sweet tender life was in vain Your only choosing was sooner or later But I still remember your name Cry out - cry out Cry out in the darkness again Cry out - cry out Cry out and remember your name Cry out and remember your name
7.
Long ago when we both were young Living for kicks, kisses and fun We were carefree, pretty & dumb Take a good look at me now Bloom of youth was starting to fade The day you faced my wavering gaze Picked me up and blew me away Take a good look at me now Did you think we’d never get old Never get old, never get old ? Take a good look at me now Mad and bad - exciting to know Where you led I was happy to go In your spell I'd never say no Take a good look at me now Bit by bit you started to sink Slapdash, bareback, starting to drink I played safe & stayed on the brink Take a good look at me now Did you think we’d never get old Never get old, never get old ? Take a good look at me now Leaning on me, sick in the street Smelling of sweat, dead on your feet Swallowing hard, unable to speak Take a good look at me now: Sober coat, a jacket & tie Sat with strangers, wiping an eye Empty gesture, saying goodbye Take a good look at me now Did you think we’d never get old Never get old, never get old ? Take a good look at me now
8.
In My Life 02:21
There are places I remember In my life - though some have changed Some forever not for better Some are gone and some remain All these places have their moments With lovers and friends I still can recall Some are dead and some are living In my life I've loved them all But of all these friends and lovers There is no-one compares with you And these memories lose their meanings When I think of love as something new Though I know I'll never lose affection For people and things that went before I know I'll often stop and think about them In my life I love you more... ...In my life I love you more Words and music: John Lennon & Paul McCartney
9.
We loved you like a brother, boy - we loved you like a son So young and wild and handsom - so reckless, so dumb You diced with the devil and you never met defeat Until you drove the wrong way up a one-way street You somehow passed your driving test when you were 17 You bought a beat-up trail bike and tweaked it till it screamed You dragged us to the business park to see your maiden run That fatal foggy Sunday when you planned to do the ton CHORUS: I've roamed the roads and motorways The highways great and small The B roads and the C roads Why, I've driven down them all One place you'll never find me though As long as I can breathe Is driving the wrong way up a one-way street Your carburettor deafened us as down the road you sped And roared towards the warning signs 200 yards ahead You gave us all a thumbs-up as you hit your target speed And disappeared the wrong way up a one-way street Now even as a toddler your never would be told You always went your own way because that's the way you rolled We heard you hit the tanker as it swerved into a tree Far in the foggy distance up that one-way street CHORUS: I've roamed the roads and motorways The highways great and small The B roads and the C roads Why, I've driven down them all One place you'll never find me though As long as I can breathe Is driving the wrong way up a one-way street You girls and boys of every land, come listen to my song The fact that someone's older doesn't always make them wrong Be kind to one another - don't forget to brush you teeth And never drive the wrong way up a one-way street. CHORUS: I've roamed the roads and motorways The highways great and small The B roads and the C roads Why, I've driven down them all One place you'll never find me though As long as I can breathe Is driving the wrong way up a one-way street
10.
I made my killing on the trading floor Bought into bullion & gilts galore First smell of trouble i was out the door Headed up country in my 4x4 No more, no more risky business No more, no more risky business No more, no more risky business Sue me suckers - I don't care no more Why bother worrying about the past The regulators they can kiss my arse I made my decisions and I won my prize You saw it coming and you closed your eyes No more, no more risky business No more, no more risky business No more, no more risky business Sue me suckers - I don't care no more Now government money's made my job secure Got the same fat bonuses I had before But if you need a mortage or business loan You'll get no credit & we'll take your home No more, no more risky business No more, no more risky business No more, no more risky business Screw you suckers - I don't care no more
11.
Only The Now 03:50
Felt like I'd known you for all of my life Long before you both arrived Those black & white Polaroids signalled the shift Before we looked into your eyes The freedom to choose I was happy to lose When freedom's a prison with walls You lifted the sentence that blighted my life And captured me once and for all The present seems endless as seconds slide by And birthdays roll endlessly on Familiar rituals year after year Who could imagine them gone Two brilliant stars shining under the tree Two treasures we tucked up in bed No home movie moments recapture the time Or words that can not be unsaid Only the now, there's only the now The moments roll on into days There's only the now, only the now Don't ever wish it away Blink for a minute, an era has gone All futures plunge into the past That room full of echoes stands silent at night Its emptiness suddenly vast I love you forever, and long may you know The comfort and joy that we've shared And long may your laughter ring on in this world Long after we're no longer there Only the now, there's only the now The moments roll on into days There's only the now, only the now Don't ever wish it away

about

My songwriting career was unexpectedly kickstarted in 1976 by composing a protest song called Sing If You're Glad To Be Gay. It passed through a couple of Top Ten hits (2-4-6-8 Motorway and War Baby) and coasted to a close two decades later with an album appropriately called Having It Both Ways. Subsequently immersed in family life and radio work, I never stopped writing songs - this album's been almost 20 years in the making. It only got made at all thanks to three people in particular: my wonderful wife, my wonderful producer Gerry and my wonderful publisher Ian Ramage - who's kindly agreed to write these sleeve notes...
Tom Robinson

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Only the Now
In the 19 years since Tom’s last studio album - let alone the four decades since his first - the business of releasing music has changed profoundly, and at intoxicating speed. At the time of writing, global corporations are trying to change the very way we consume music, the Sunday evening chart ritual has been consigned to history, and the NME - another touchstone of UK music culture - has departed the newsagent to become a freesheet.

While many have recoiled from this revolution, screaming their dissent, one musician who embraces its wild exhilaration is Tom Robinson. Inspired by the proliferation of creativity in this connected world, Tom has founded his record on classic songwriting skills, realised in the vitality of the moment. The eclectic spread of influences and collaborations here are united by a simple honesty: he means it!

Hence the logic of marrying Sir Ian McKellen’s unmistakeable tones with rapper Swami Baracus on Holy Smoke; or the passion of Billy Bragg’s rant on The Mighty Sword of Justice, alongside John Grant’s soulful guest vocal on Cry Out.

And the sound of this record itself demands attention: producer Gerry Diver has conjured an astonishing sonic spectrum from his modest South London studio, giving the whole album an oddly magical coherence. These new adventures of Tom & Gerry present an utterly compelling listener experience.

As the musical environment continues to evolve - and showbiz moguls jockey for position in a constantly changing world - why should we mourn the past, or fret in fear at what lies ahead? Why not embrace the one thing that really matters: Only The Now.

Ramage
Autumn 2015
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credits

released October 16, 2015

Produced by Gerry Diver with
Tom Robinson bass, lead vocal
Lee Forsyth Griffiths second vocal
Andy Treacey drums
Adam Phillips guitar

Sleeve Design: Guy Sexty
Photography: Jill Furmanovsky/RockArchive.com
© 2015 Castaway NorthWest Recordings
℗ 2015 BMG Rights Management (UK) Limited except Track 8

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Tom Robinson London, UK

Tom Robinson (b.1950) is a UK songwriter & broadcaster first known in the 70s as an anti-racist and LGBT campaigner. He released 19 albums between 1975-2001 with various bands and has co-written songs with Elton John, Peter Gabriel, Dan Hartman and Manu Katché. He's an award-winning presenter at BBC Radio 6 Music, and released Only The Now (his first album in 19 years) in October 2015. ... more

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