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Catherine Wheel

by TA Walker

Overture 01:32
Flying sparks Satellites Trajectory of Spinning light Comet tails through Circle space Shattered by a Touch of grace Arms that burn Stay out of reach Sirens singing Each to each All will shake and Darkness breaks on the Catherine wheel All that we know What lies in shadow Will be revealed Burn down so soon Pour down like rain Turning no more Be still again Here it comes Around again Returning, bound In seasons’ chain Flames and beauty Together tied Spread the fireglow Far and wide All will shake...
Maybe if I grab this sheet of paper All will tumble forth Think again, remembering a pen Might capture words of worth Maybe if I step off this high table And believe in flight That will prove enough to stop me Falling on my face
Eggshells 03:03
When it’s good, it’s sublime A convertible drive Together, the memories good - the injuries healed Always miss the blind bends Where we fly off the road Spinning our wheels in the field The eggshells I skirt around Scattered like mines Never be sure if I’ll crack one this time Glue back the fragments To look good as new Then it tumbles head-first off the wall We prefer it this way You’d expect me to say A forest where sun always shines The rain plays its part And clouds where they start from But you already know what’s on my mind The eggshells I skirt around... [bridge] Do I ask for too much? A gossamer sculpture Undone with an unwitting touch Believe if you can The breaks are no part of the plan Hold this piece here - let’s build it anew
Joey 03:06
Lost down the lane With dried-out leaves for company A scarecrow points directions In his usual way I believe my home Cannot be far to go Any road could take me there Somewhere I don’t know Wandering To and fro To a place I don't know Wondering What I mean What are words But signposts? Walk with me, just a while And chase the west wind away That piece of sun, a sideward smile That holds the dusk and lengthens day Last autumn’s leaves Will dance and evade The closing of the year Twisting and turning Their way down the lane As if they know their home is here
Close your eyes for just a while Pretend it’s all unreal As all around us flies apart The centre, holding still Dig the diamonds from the coal And set them in a ring The gems that send us laughing more Recalling everything We cling onto - to make it well
Slow off the blocks Follow the rest Opponent awaiting your serve The plan’s on the board The cards on the beize Only, you must hold your nerve The game has been set The match has been made The tournament we never knew we had played A trophy that takes two winners to raise Lies at the end of the lane And now experience Taught me at last The substitute’s bench makes no home The best way to win Refusing to play No longer an option alone The game has been set… From the start we were patient And planned many moves Then too soon the hours have flown But the field is now yours Your opponent expects you To place down your winning last stone The game has been set…


My entry for the 2016 NaSoAlMo (National Solo Album Month) Internet songwriting/recording challenge (basically, to write and record at least 29 minutes of original material, plus one cover version if desired, entirely within the month of November). I went for a deliberately "stripped-down" approach this time around - no sequencers or other machines; all guitars and a bit of sampled "mellotron" on one track.

A few notes and thoughts on the making of "Catherine Wheel" can be found on my website: tawalker.co.uk/music/catherine-wheel-2016/


released November 29, 2016

All compositions, guitars and voice by Tim, except "Joey" (written by Nick Drake)
The "mellotron" on "Westonbirt" was played on the iOS app "Super Manetron", with electric guitar via the "MIDI Guitar 2" app
Guitars used: 2003 Faith Saturn 6-string acoustic, 2005 Seagull S12 12-string acoustic, 2012 Ministar Testar electric, 1991 Steinberger Sceptre electric, 2015 Harley Benton Slider II electric lap-steel, 2000 Squier Precision Special bass
Recorded by Tim on iPhone and iPad (usually with a Line6 Sonic Port VX plugged in) at assorted locations, and mixed by him at Sidingsound I, England, entirely between 1-30 November 2016
Cover: Tim, using the "Flowpaper" iPhone app

For Joy and Naomi xxx




TA Walker UK

Guitarist/multi-instrumentalist, composer and songwriter, often with "electronica", "lo-fi" and "prog" inclinations.

Um... will that do?

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