Water II (Walk Upon Water)

from by LILLI LEWIS @folkrockdiva

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about

This song is a co-write with my wife, poet-musician-teacher-healer Liz Hogan. She wrote the main guitar riff, and said she heard in her head the line "Walk upon water, never forget." At the time, our band The Shiz was backing a burgeoning poet/musician Jonathon Brown, and I think we thought we were gonna use the music as a backing track for him...but instead, I woke up one day with that melody and lyric in my head...it just fell out whole. I was shy about approaching her with it because I changed the chord structure in a couple of places and because I didn't want to shank her song. Up until that point, each of us was leading the songs we wrote, even if it was a co-write...But I heard it all loud and clear, harmonies and all...and she seemed to hear it just as readily, so it took on a life of its own.

Interestingly enough, her line was supposed to answer every line of my line, as a meditation "never forget! never forget! never forget! miracles mothafuckas!! we do that shit every day!! all of us!! every day!! the whole display is a fricking miracle!! never forget!!!!!!!!) but The Shiz played the song for almost 2 years without them ever singing that refrain line. LOL! It wasn't until the recording that I let the engineer and long time friend TJ Barends know that the line was always supposed to have been there. He said he felt betrayed! Like he hadn't heard the song until he heard the song with that refrain....I would've felt the same way, if it hadn't been in my head all that time....

The horns on this tune is a sax trio tracked by my spirit brother Eric Thomas of Elevate the Quest. Eric and I once played in a jazz / hip-hop project together based in Atlanta, and we reconnected in the mountains of North Georgia for this session when I let him know I was make new music and that I was going to try to make another push with my career. It was a beautiful reunion, and even though I never originally intended to have horns on this track, what he left behind with us just playing around in the middle of the night let me know I not only needed horns on my record, I needed horns in my (currently unformed) new BAND! Totally changed the trajectory for what would become "The Lilli Lewis Project."

One more very small bit of minutiae is that the bridge quotes Neil Young's "Castles Burning" because we used to call Liz "Neil, Jr." and that was Liz's go to song to play whenever anyone put a guitar in her hand. She had a really cool folky arrangement that changed meters and everything, but she said even though she was a Neil head, it was Annie Lennox's recording that got her into that song....

lyrics

TELL ME HAVE YOU HEARD THE PEOPLE SAY
TO MEET THE DAWN YOU MUST SURVIVE THE DAY
EVERYBODY HAS A PART TO PLAY

TIRED, BROKEN AND YOUR MIND IS NUMB
LOST THE BATTLE BUT YOU’RE HOLDING ON
THAT’S THE TIME YOU GOTTA SING THIS SONG

WE WALK UPON THE WATER
THE ONLY WAY WE EVER SURVIVE
WE WALK UPON THE WATER
IT’S HOW WE CHANGE TO STAY ALIVE
NOW THE TEMPERATURE IS RISING
BUT WE’RE NOT IN IT BABY JUST TO GET BY
WE WALK UPON THE WATER
ANYTHING, ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE

EVEN WHEN YOU THINK YOU STAND ALONE
SOMETHING IN YOU KNOWS THE TIME HAS COME
TO LIVE THE TRUTH OF TIMES LONG GONE

WE WALK UPON THE WATER
THE ONLY WAY WE EVER SURVIVE
WE WALK UPON THE WATER
THE WAY WE CHANGE TO STAY ALIVE
NOW THE TEMPERATURE IS RISING
BUT WE’RE NOT IN IT BABY JUST TO GET BY
WE WALK UPON THE WATER
ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN IF YOU

DON’T LET IT BRING YOU DOWN
KEEP IT STEADY AND YOU STAND YOUR GROUND
WE DETERMINE WHAT TOMORROW HOLDS
BUT WE GOTTA LET THE BEST IN US GROW

credits

from ORANGE MUSIC, VOLUMES I & II, released January 15, 2017
Liz Hogan / Joy Clark / Wade Hymel, guitar
David Alan Craig, bass
Wade Hymel, drums
Eric Thomas, tenor sax and alto sax

Recorded by TJ Barends at Baresounds in Ponchatoula, LA and by FRD for Sanctuary Studios in Clarksville, GA

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about

LILLI LEWIS @folkrockdiva New Orleans, Louisiana

Lilli Lewis bears a progressive, provocative, and conscientious presence paired with a love for music that began before she composed her first song on the piano at age three, Lewis is a modern day Renaissance woman, who, when in full gear, conjures the likes of Big Mama Thornton, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Odetta, and Janis Joplin. ... more

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