Boots

by Noe Venable

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about

What they said:

Only a couple of records lately have pulled me from song to song to the end; one was Van Morrison’s Down the Road and the other was Noe Venable’s Boots… You’d never guess that Boots was “recorded in various living rooms”, the sound, the multi-instrumental arrangements and the musicianship are brilliant, and guitarist Venable’s mysterious, melodious vignettes resonate with unforced poetry and a viewpoint that’s all her own– “Julia” is just the ballad of a friendship, but somebody must’ve left the window open, because you’re shivering. No surprise that young genii like drummer Scott Amendola and everything-player Todd Sickafoose are involved… Venable’s been cruising the Bay Area for Several Years, recently touring in support of ani DiFranco, and she hasn’t peaked.

-L.A. Weekly Pick of the Week

Once you hear the name Noe Venable, you won’t easily forget it. Once you hear Noe Venable, you’ll never forget her. Venable is a San Francisco-based singer-songwriter who has a ton of talent packed into her tiny frame. So much so in fact, that the high priestess of female folk, Ani DiFranco, selected Venable to fill the opening slot on the most recent leg of her never-ending tour. Boots is Venable’s third outing, and it’s her best… Venable’s ability to blend folk, pop, county and jazz elements is sharper and more compelling than ever, the mix of guitar, bass, piano and strings is richer, and her pixie-like voice has never been more flowing and beguiling. Maybe this is what Sheryl Crow would have sounded like if she had chased art over commerce, or maybe it’s like Suzanne Vega streaking through the woods on opium. The title track kicks off the dozen delightful ditties. It’s a low-key, smoky and slithering ode to self reliance, and when Venable sings the line, “I have my boots to carry me,” well, you’ve likely never heard the word “boots” sung quite so harmingly. “Julia” reveals herself to be delicate and gorgeous, “Tinkerbell” is mysterious and haunting and enable’s “Happiness” is sprightly and earnest with just a touch of the blues. The word chanteuse has been used and abused as of late, but in Venable’s case, it fits like a pair of comfy, trusted boots.

-Jonezin’ Music

Here we have a homegrown, full blown young musical visionary, and a window into a part of the new San Francisco sound. This train is headed somewhere.

-puremusic.com

Enviably literate and awesomely disciplined, Venable amplifies her power through a riveting soprano voice that stuns and enraptures so thoroughly that multiple listenings are required to begin unraveling her mysteries of music and meaning.

-S.F. Bay Guardian

credits

released July 19, 2018

Produced by Todd Sickafoose

Noe Venable— voices, acoustic guitars, mandolin
Todd Sickafoose— Bass, B-3 Organ, piano and other keyboards, guitar, loops, and programming
Alan Lin— Violin
Scott Amendola— drums
Morris Acevedo— guitar
Adam Levy— electric guitar
Rob Burger— chamberlain, pump organ, solovox, indian banjo
Etienne De Rocher— harmonica
Michael Witcher— dobro

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Noe Venable San Francisco, California

Ethereal Folk Music for Seekers. In the words of Noe's fans: Elven, dreamlike, and entirely original.

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Track Name: Boots
I go to the corner where it all goes down
and I do things I’ll regret but not right now
they say “angel, you been here before”
yeah, I had my boots to carry me

just like Pandora with her box
I let everything out and spin around
and when they come to me, it’s like a river to cross
but I have my boots to ferry me

and I remember how it feels
I always stop and remember but I do it again
and I jump up and slap my heels
cause I have my boots on
I’d like to see my eyes in someone else’s face
I’d like to see my face on a magazine
the things I want, the life I need
my boots keep me between

I passed out on a subway train
and a woman she came and took my hand
but I’m alright I’m okay I can fall like rain
long as I have my boots to help me stand

and the streets they empty hour by hour
til they were finally drained and I was all alone
and just like Pandora, I was sorry now
but I had my boots to carry me home

the sky is wild and full of holes
the wind is wild and it’s full of coughs
sometimes I think I’d float away
if I took my boots off
I’d like to see my eyes in someone else’s face
I’d like to see my face on a magazine
the things I want, the life I need
my boots keep me between
Track Name: Prettiness
I have never been one for prettiness prettiness
thinking of lace ’bout makes me puke
but the thing I just bought has a little bit little bit
I’m putting it on and I’m thinking of you

when I was a child I followed some holy men
going into woods to do their work
I had an overcoat on just to cover me cover me
listening for anything I might learn

and there were stars up in the heavens
and if they caught me, what could they do?
they did not know I was a woman
at least I didn’t think they knew

I think about it when I look at him look at him
everybody hides from what they are
take me, I used to think I was as empty as an emperor
that’s what I thought but I’ve come so far

his turkish drums and two way mirrors
the way he moves, slow motion slow
he does not know I am a woman
but I think I might want him to know
Track Name: Tinkerbell
tinkerbell busts her brains
bashing into window panes
but who is gonna need a light
in the buggy buzzy neon night?

tinkerbell takes off her rags
empties out her saddle bags
and watching all the cracks in the wall rearrange
tinkerbell is open to a change

“probably time I looked into
some other things a girl can do
could sell my body
to light up someone’s t.v…”

but something comes through at last
so it doesn’t come to that
luckily a girl lost her ring in the rain
so tinkerbell is dangling down a drain

and there in the sewer she
sees a thing she’s never seen
thousands of shiny useless objects
glimmering
Track Name: Stolen Thing
where in the hell is big blue eyes?
where’s your virginity?
by the side of the freeway
I lost it recently
oh it didn’t take so long
oh it didn’t take so long
oh it didn’t take so long
I am a stolen thing

I have a dream of big blue eyes
in my hand is a genie
you know he wouldn’t ever wanna surprise no one
singin’ “little girl little girl set me free”
oh I know what he means
oh I know what he means
oh I know what he means
I am a stolen thing

don’t ever cry in the pouring rain
never lie to a pirate king
he will beat you at your game
make everything everywhere scream and sing
oh you make it get so good
oh you make me get so mean
oh you make it get to good
I am a stolen thing

by the rumble of the roaring rain
by the holes that it drills in me
I was naked as a blue jay
by the side of the freeway
oh I was dancing slow
oh I was dancing free
oh I was dancing slow
and this is the dance of the stolen thing
Track Name: My Insomnia
I went down to the dock
I turned off all my clocks
but there is nothing left to dream

get in bed and try to fall
lay starin’ at the wall
and like a prayer I say your name

my insomnia my insomnia

tried to ask if it’s alright
if we take off a night
but I couldn’t find your head
drowning in a sea of love
in the expanses of my bed

my insomnia my insomnia my insomnia

you exhaust me
Track Name: Climb
can you hear me?
I don’t love anybody else
keep you near me
just like I try to keep myself near

all the givers
and all the rivers in the world
cannot quench it
the arid desert that you
bring to everyone you know

I see you counting lovers in the street
I see you kissing anybody’s feet
you are a kitten caught up in a tree
I see you climb away

tiny birdling
scrambling for any scraggy tree
I am thinking
you make your nest where none can be
in the summer
the streets are waving in the heat
I am thinking about the water that you keep
in the corners of your mouth

climb away

I see you counting lovers in the street
I see you licking anybody’s feet
you are a kitten caught up in a tree
you are unreachable by me
I see you climb away
Track Name: Happiness
we were sitting in a T-bird
it has not consented to run since 1970
brothers bent on the destruction of innocent T-birds
crowbarred everything but the
radio, windshield, driver’s side mirror
love is alone with the radio on
and love is a newly blind
fumbling fumbling
tell me what to do with all this
happiness

lobsters nesting in a dead man
waiting at the bottom of the lonely ocean
neighbors swimming in their fishbowls
television blue glow if you go I won’t know anyone
taking a bath in the deadly sunshine
time is a car with the radio on and
time is a broken boat
ruddering ruddering
tell me what to do with all this
happiness

busted and broken didn’t get very far
busted and broken sittin right where you are
[let it last another summer]
but I’m a feather flying, I’m a leaf on the wind
there’s no school like driving with the wind on your skin
[let it last another summer]

love is a newly blind
time is a broken boat
taking a bath in the deadly sunshine
time is a car with the radio on
and time is a broken boat
ruddering ruddering
tell me what to do with all this
happiness
Track Name: Look, Luck
I am out of change
terrible and strange
under a fake blue sky

you’re spinning out of sight
I been up all night
but every road leads here

look, luck
do not disappear
I can almost hear you trying
but luck
do not disappear
you’re the only one that’s left to love

so much love
you can’t pay in love
talk to the big machine
please
I pawned my ring
I’ll do anything
in hope of a little

luck
do not disappear
I can almost hear you trying
but luck
do not disappear
you’re the only one that’s left to love
Track Name: Julia
tell you who I miss the most
dressed in see-through like a ghost
julia julia
she pulled me in and she locked the door
gave me wine and gave me more
julia julia

if you need a place to go
you can always crib with
julia julia
if you’re sick she’ll cool you down
til you’re only sick for
julia julia

julia don’t take this wrong
it’s not to say that I’m the one
to take more than an hour or a day from

taken with pills, taken with beer
many come for love is
julia julia
what I’d give to taste again
all the dreams I left in
julia julia

funny, that last time I left
the wind was howls the sky was cleft
and summer clouds were dumping on the harbor

julia don’t take this wrong
it’s not to say that I’m the one
to take more than an hour or a day from
cause you deserve a quiet place
that doesn’t move or change its face
and everywhere I ran, I ran away from
Track Name: Wild, Blue and Yonder
wild blue and yonder
which way to go
wild blue and yonder
wear white in the snow
pack seven sandwiches
it’s farther than you know from here

witch in the kitchen
gin and a knife
Christmas is outta here
tinsel and fife
lover, how shall we spend this
ribbon-flannel life she spared?

there must be a way out
tossed by the side of the freeway
shackled and shamed as a blue jay
jacked up on whiskey and death
and we will find it
slip through the cracks of the evening
grinning as memory leaves me holding
nothing but my breath

wild blue and yonder
riding the fright
wild blue and yonder
you shine like a light
lover it’s been so long
tell me where you are tonight?

there must be a way out
tossed by the side of the freeway
shackled and shamed as a blue jay
jacked up on whiskey and death
and you will find it
blow in the breeze like the reeds do
grinning as memory leaves you holding
nothing but your breath
Track Name: Don't Stop Crying
April morning
in ’85
you came to visit
I came alive
the things you’d speak of
the tales you’d tell
no one would guess you’d been through hell

but I was dirty
I was unplanned
and I was born to feel and understand
your falling pieces in my tiny hands

whichever way we’d go
whichever way we’d go

you’re so much older
it’s really strange
everyone grows colder
you never change
it’s like the ocean when you rush in
it’s like you’re standing here again

don’t stop crying
you’ll flood the street
we’ll take our boats out
just you and me
and we will see the things we see

whichever way we go
whichever way we go
Track Name: In Memoriam
when she takes out
her trusty switchblade
Maddy can bring
enormous men to their knees

and in the night
came to my window
flushed with the running
or whatever it was

all of our days
obliterating
I will remember
swear to you that I will

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