Strawberry Pumpkin Apocrypha (1988​-​89)

by Nate Butler

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about

This is an album of Nate Butler songs written and recorded between 1987 and 1989. On many occasions, Nate invited various friends to play the rhythm section instruments and/or sing the lead vocals.

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released August 2, 2014

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Nate Butler Fresno, California

Nate Butler is an artist, actor, musician, and singer/songwriter from Fresno, California, USA.

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Track Name: Optimism
OPTIMISM - words & music by Nate Butler
You know, Broadway songs are full of everything but my pessimism
So if you ask me to sing, I'll bring the optimist in me

Bone-dry river, Indian giver, optimism
Pray tell, father, where's the water? -- optimism
When it goes, I hope you know
Many winter winds will blow you away -- and you'll be blown away

Where for art thou? -- Stain my heart now, optimism
Summer splinter, stab the winter, optimism
When it goes, I hope you know
Winter will not end, and without springtime there's no hay-fever

Sometimes it's hard to climb it, without a warm climate -- some don't mind it
I'll trade in everything, for just a set of wings
And take off like Pegasus ...
Broadway songs are full of everything but my pessimism
So if you ask me to sing, I'll bring the optimist in me

Bone-dry river, Indian giver, optimism
Pray tell, father, where's the water? -- optimism
When it goes, I hope you know
Winter will not end, and without springtime there's no hay-fever
-- and some don't mind it, but
I'll trade in everything, for just a set of wings
And take off like Pegasus ... fly me
And if you ask me to sing, I'll bring the optimist in me

... I'll do mine.
Track Name: Stood Me Up
STOOD ME UP - words & music by Nate Butler
I thought about it and I don't think it's alright
Then forgot about it -- so we're not gonna fight
I gave you 'til half-past-eight, though seven was already late
That's the kind of date I hate
It's understood that you shouldn't have stood me up

You figured you'd weigh it out, and cut me a deal
But I'm not in -- and I'm not out, that's not the way I feel
Not an ounce of consideration, leaving me in anticipation
That's the kind of date I hate
It's understood that you shouldn't have stood me up
The game, again, the game, the game

Suppose I see you on the town, later that night?
Cyrano, you put him down ... the ensemble's uptight
Don't wanna sound off in spite; only want to do what's right
I just hate being uptight

It's understood that you shouldn't have stood me up
The game, again, the game, the game
Track Name: Disarray
DISARRAY - words & music by Nate Butler
I've figured out what you're about, and who I thought you were
But I'm not out to make you shout; no, only to confer
Disappointed, mild annoyment
Play it cool, be the fool she'll never burn

Disappointment, I know it's all my fault
I expected more on your end
Is that what friends are for?

Make my day disarray
Disarray, it's okay, I wanna stay this way ... you say:
"Hey, no way
Hey, no way"

I couldn't pick a better place to tell you to your face
This little passion play you made is hardly worth the chase
Disappointed, mild annoyment
It's your choice, raise your voice; you're center-stage

Disappointment, giving belief to this thief?
And all that it meant, a good show, much better than you know

Make my day disarray
Disarray, it's okay, and when you say "Go away"
I'll say, "Okay, Fay Wray!"
Okay, Fay Wray!"
Track Name: Undertoad
UNDERTOAD - words & music by Nate Butler
Summer is gone, but it's still sticky
If I had time, I'd go to the ocean
And take you along -- though it'd be tricky
Love wraps us up in some useless old emotion
But my days are spent on a mission
Finding new ways -- but I might be fishing
Singing a tune; I would sing it for you, but
It's been six months since we spoke, and if we did I'd choke,
And yes, I miss you, but

I don't want to feel an undertow
The fish in the sea; there isn't one that captures me
This is what folly can be
I come home to see ...

Beeping message machine, telling the story
You can speak 'till your voice is broken
One button takes away the message you've spoken
I don't know why I would try erasing memories

Could be the Undertoad, the fish in the sea
And only the waves enrapture me, so pragmatically
Take the time to breathe in big sea
Water for you, water for me
Do we need to be in endless sea?
With all other fish?
What folly for me, with memories like this

Taking my wings on a vacation
All my tears -- cast into the ocean
It crosses my mind, I'm swimming backwards in motion
Burt love wraps me up in some tangled new emotion
And I guess it'll stay -- guess I still want it that way
Track Name: Balance
BALANCE - words by Sean Mahoney & Nate Butler, music by Nate Butler
I feathered in on an owl
Sneezed and brushed the dust for an hour -- hung up my coat, threw open the doors
I feathered in on an owl, after sleeping on loud clouds
And clubs and crowds and pubs and
How I froze another reflection
And buried in my life-long collection
Feathered in on fleeting moments, and lost my many children

Somewhere, where my days were left
Unchained, and the train steamed on
Without them, until -- winter fell and the weight shifted
And I balanced on a hill
And I balanced on a hill

The waiter spotted the owl; asked if I'd need a "loud towel"?
I said, "Owl is vowel, not fowl, and he goes where I go, if I wish it
My reality is sufficient
Feathered in on fleeting moments and lost to many children."

Somewhere, where my days were left
Unchained, and the train steamed on
Without them, until -- winter fell and the weight shifted
And I balanced on a hill
And I balanced on a hill
Track Name: The Great Irregular Circle
THE GREAT IRREGULAR CIRCLE - from a poem by Sean Mahoney, adapted into lyrics by Nate Butler, music by Nate Butler

This will be the last letter I deliver ...
Do you remember reading maps, but skipping the legends?
Common sense seemed to trickle out of your fingers
As you requested

By the powers invested in your chest, you bested not only your parameters
But challenged The Great Irregular Circle

Swashbucklers never buckle, and hitters live for hitting
Nobody beats the Crusader For Peace
What becomes of families alone, watching clocks a-ticking?
You know that mutiny is punishable only by death ... that's the way we do it out West

Do you remember fighting to meet the divine?
... While all that I fought were these demons of mine
We'd meet over wine ... sometimes I think that was the only time you were mine.
Then the phone would ring;
and you would bring a lot of flowers the next time you came
-- whenever that was
Saying I was too sweet to be in The Great Irregular Circle!

Swashbucklers never buckle, and only cut-throats scuttle
This is a ship with a mission to make!
"What becomes of mutineers?" asked the novice -- his rebuttal:
You know that mutiny is punishable only by death ... that's the way we do it out West

Then the phone would ring;
and you would bring a lot of flowers the next time you came
-- whenever that was
Saying I was too sweet to be in The Great Irregular Circle!

Swashbucklers never buckle, and hitters live for hitting
Nobody beats the Crusader For Peace
What becomes of families alone, watching clocks a-ticking?
You know that mutiny is food for regret ... a dinner

Swashbucklers never buckle, and only cut-throats scuttle
This is a man with a promise to keep!
"What becomes of mutineers?" asked the novice -- his rebuttal:
You know that mutiny is punishable only by death ... that's the way we do it out West

You thought that every circle traced every space, you ought to know!
... You're a rail-roaded hero
You thought that every circle traced every space, you ought to know!
This is regret ... a sliver.
Track Name: Rebel With A Cause
REBEL WITH A CAUSE – words by Andrew B. Chittick, music & additional words by Nate Butler
People used to speak out if things looked wrong
'Cause it had something to do with them – those days are gone
I know all about Vietnam, and on
And it had something to do with me – those days are gone

Summer of '69 I turned four
But it had something to do with me – and here comes more
I will be nineteen in nineteen eighty-four
And it's got something to do with me – we've been this way before

With a song in my heart, and an eagerness to start
I'm an ordinary man, oh-oh
But I've gotta do what I can, you know
With a song on my lips, and the world at my fingertips
Got an ordinary life, oh-oh
But I cannot sit idly by, you know

'Cause it's got something to do with me, and I won't outlast it
Got an ordinary chance, oh-oh
I'm just a victim of circumstance, no-no

With a song in the world, and grace in the eyes of a child
Ordinary, you can see
But please try for posterity, you know,
When it's got something to do with me

To feather out on my owl
Say goodbyes and shake hands for hours
Brush off more dust ...

And it's got something to do with me, you know: [repeat]
Take a look at the truth, it shows
We're run by business suits, uh-oh
Rich men in cowboy boots, no no
Down on the destitute, so low
Pick on the prostitutes, whoah whoah
Nix on the nuts and fruits, they go
And commies are in cahoots, oh no
Try to suppress the truth, no no
Something to do with me, and something to do with you
Something to do with you

I don't mind ...
It's been a long time coming, and a long time getting underway
Track Name: Plastic Blues
PLASTIC BLUES - words by A. B. Chittick, music by Nate Butler
I'm so enthusiastic over reinforced plastic
That nothin' seems to matter anymore
I don't care 'bout my conduct, just this groovy man-made product that is now evrything from tennis shorts to doors

I committed misdemeanor over a brand-new vacuum cleaner
'Cause the lady upstairs didn't like the noise
She was always made and fumin', 'cause I'm always rug vacuumin',
So I put gunpowder in her Viceroys
Then I'm hauled downtown by police-station boys

I told them 'bout my fad, about this stuff that's really bad,
But the dummies didn't seem to comprehend
And they weren't enthusiastic over reinforced plastic; they just locked me up for five years, maybe ten
Told me never, never, never to speak of plastic stuff again
Whoah no

I'm sittin' in my cell, thinking life had gone to hell
When the table almost made me want to scream
It was solid-structured plastic, and I thought, oh, that's fantastic
I can live inside my little plastic dream ...
Also likewisely constructed were the sheets that I abducted from the bed for my escape rope down the wall
Then I kissed this institution adios to their solution
I didn't give a rip about their ways at all, I didn't give a rip about their ways at all, bye-bye

Well, I never could get sore-eyed watching polyvinyl-chloride, though I know that it's a really risky thing
But who cares if it's explosive, cancer-causing and corrosive?
i just want it to surround and go ding!
Well I hope you can conceive it that those who disbelieve it must be quadraplegic, impotent, or blind
And I know that I'm prophetic, because that which is synthetic will eventually replace all of mankind
That which is synthetic will replace mankind
That which is synthetic will replace mankind
That which is synthetic will replace mankind
That which is synthetic will replace mankind
That which is synthetic will replace mankind ... and I don't mind ...
It's been a long time coming, and a long time getting underway ...
Track Name: The Marina Stomp
MARINA STOMP - words & music by Nate Butler
The house is full of flowers
You're alive, and it's party time
We've ousted all the hours, we're alive in this beat of time

I feel the cool breeze
I smell salt and fish with ease
I feel tossed into the arena -- gotta find a new home from the Marina
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah!

You've hosted lots of showers, in your time
You've had party time
You boasted lots of flowers, you're alive in this heart of mine

I feel the cool breeze
I smell salt and fish with ease
When the power goes stone-cold and serener -- gotta find a new home from the Marina
Continuity in the community -- we're all looking at the same sky
Continuity in the community -- we're all looking at the same sky
Yeah, yeah ... yeah!

The house is full of flowers
You're alive, and it's party time
We've ousted all the hours, we're alive in this beat of time

We feel the cool breeze
We smell salt and fish with ease
I feel tossed into the arena -- gotta find a new home from the Marina
Continuity in the community -- we're all looking at the same sky
Continuity in the community -- we're all looking at the same sky
Continuity, the world is watching but -- we're all looking at the same sky
Continuity, the world is watching but -- we're all looking at the same sky
Track Name: The Good Dream
THE GOOD DREAM - words & music by Nate Butler
I'm at work, and I'm counting the moments 'til my break;
A couple peoples' feelings may be at stake.
I may have a couple decisions to make,
But I can't get a thought in edgewise
On these customers I'm paid four dollars an hour to serve.
They don't know their Lord's thrown me a sideways curve
(that I probably deserved)
But it wasn't labeled 'blessing' or 'curse' ...
Keep those thoughts and observations in check,
'Til you have time to check from every aspect.

I haven't always been a shining example of purity,
But I've separated right and wrong, and found that's security.
There's a world of empty people, and I'd be delighted to find one not-so-empty that loves me.
'Til last night, 'til last night ...
Someone accidentally dropped a wrench in my machinery.
And as soon as I get a handle on my situation,
I'm gonna drag it out through the streets; tonight I sing.
Tonight I sing; tonight I sing -- last night I only had a dream
Last night I only had a dream

I've got to find out what this means
I've got to find out, got to find out what this means ... oooh me, mmm

Last night I only had a dream.
And here's to many more good dreams.
Track Name: Sing Doo Be Doo
SING DOO BE DOO - words & music by Nate Butler
And it's a long, long, long long
And I, I long for it not to be so long
I could croon, but there's no blues that I can sing
that you ain't heard Frankie do, too
So sing doo be doo ...