One Silver Needle

by Arthur Alligood

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    "A brilliant album." – BBC

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A native of rural Tennessee, singer-songwriter Arthur Alligood has spent the past decade driving dusty roads on tour. He has earned praise from No Depression and Common Folk and the English tastemakers at the BBC. His blend of folk, gospel and raw Southern poetry is the perfect framework for Alligood’s honest storytelling and wry commentary on the human condition.

NewSong Recordings is proud to announce the April 25, 2012 release of the album ‘One Silver Needle.’ Produced by Mikal Blue and featuring an all-star cast of musicians including drum legend Jim Keltner (John Lennon, George Harrison, Bob Dylan), bassist Leland Sklar (James Taylor, Carole King, Jackson Browne) and guitarist Michael Ward (Ben Harper, The Wallflowers), this album is the grand prize awarded to Arthur, the 2011 NewSong Music Competition grand prize winner who was chosen from 2,100 entries.

“A meticulous craftsman, Alligood has a refreshing ability to resist throwing too much instrumentation or too many words into one song.” —NO DEPRESSION

“Truly poetic” –Cherrie McIlwaine, BBC Radio Ulster

“Alligood is a talented wordsmith . . . with lyrical pearls that only an outstanding songwriter could pen.”
–Common Folk Music

“You just don’t see talent like Arthur anymore these days, and there is not a weak song in the bunch.” –Drum legend Jim Keltner (John Lennon, George Harrison, Bob Dylan)

“His performances are subtle and powerful, his songs are original and he’s an artist who knows who he is and is not afraid to do things his own way.” –Larry Groce, host NPR’s Mountain Stage


released April 25, 2012

Produced & Mixed by Mikal Blue
Executive Producer: Gar Ragland


all rights reserved



NewSong Recordings Asheville, North Carolina

Boutique singer-songwriter label, local in Asheville, NC.

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Track Name: Shouldn't Be That Hard
I been looking, but can't find a one
A looking glass without a spider web crack
You been looking to find me undone
It shouldn't be that hard

That's what I told you when the walls came crashin'
That's what I said when the words got lost
That's what I told you
It shouldn't be that hard

I'm all to pieces and can't seem to fit
Seeing no sense in going back at all
It's a hard confession to give
"Oh, this shouldn't be that hard"

You've been making that chord
like there's no other way
I've been running the scales
back and forth in the wrong key
Don't it always turn out
harder than you think?
Track Name: We Had A Mind To Run
We had a mind to run
And we ran till sunset was no fire
The stars became our blaze
Their light our one desire
We swore we'd never go back
But we we're kids just learning to lie
We couldn't leave that town

We had to try just to shake it off
all that dust, cross the sacred lines
We had to try to just find it out, this old world
hidden from our eyes
We had to try

We had a mind to run
and we ran against the grain under the gun
Holding the bar so high
We'd never
Our Mommas wept and worried
Our Daddys just shook there heads
We swore we were gonna leave that town

Oh, the day I remember
cut the sky a blood-let blue
The thought was just as clear
Us boys we all knew
But we gave it one last run
finally crossed that county line
Walking back we felt like soldiers
coming home from the fight
Back to our hometown
We couldn't leave that town
Track Name: Bring My Heart Out
Lo, the many shadows
that hang outside my door
Calling through the keyhole
Creeping across the floor
The whisper bears a burden
that I cannot ignore
Long time to wage a war

I'm gonna bring my heart out
I gotta bring my heart out to breathe
I'm gonna bring my heart out
I gotta bring my heart out to breathe

Time is quickly passing
leaving us alone
Never stopping
Never a sound
I shook the hand of heartache
said "I'm taking another road
that you can't follow down."

Long I have trembled
Long I have scorned
the thought
the mention of your name
If you're gonna find me
Love, you best be warned
You gonna have to fight these fears away
Track Name: One Silver Needle
There I was
There I am
a lonely beggar
on the edge of town
Wearing my clothes
like the water
wears the rock

You got all that golden thread
and one silver needle
Think you might mend all my tears?
You got all that golden thread
and one silver needle
Take and mend all my tears

I walk
I run
down these streets, cold
looking for love
Wearing my heart
on my sleeve
like an anchor
the weight is just too much

I ain't done
tearing apart
but you knew that
from the start
Track Name: Darkness To Light
I'm waiting for the morning
Waiting in the night
When that sun comes over the mountain
She gonna turn this darkness to light

Now its been a long throw
since we first took to this soil
We found an itch to scratch real quick
and called it war
All this fighting it ain't nothing, but
a symptom of our sickness
and we still ain't found a cure

We keep walking down that same path
that worn out, crooked way
Stepping over all of history's little tracks
Falling it don't come first
pride will push you to the edge
and once you start falling
can you ever go back?

How do we answer our children
when they wonder what went wrong?
Do we scratch our heads and tell them
no one know really knows why?
Do we go back to a garden, a perfect little world
to two lovers who couldn't keep it right?
Track Name: Go On Back
Walk she would
through the pines
cross the road
down that red dirt drive
Dangling stars
in the night
just like the sun
born on fire
Knocking on the door
of that double wide

You got no need honey
for me baby
I got one need honey
and it ain't you
Go on back
Go on back

Her Momma was a queen
Her Daddy a peasant
down begging at her feet
She was the youngest in line
with wandering eyes
two brothers in college and a sister
who'd died
She went knocking on the door
of that double wide

Bent and bleeding
on a try
house as empty
as her sister's smile
Clouds hung like sheets
on the line
Nobody to talk her out
Nobody to put up a fight
She went knocking on the door of that double wide
Knocking on the door of that double wide
A fire only need one spark to fly
Track Name: Why'd You Let Me Go Cold?
You caught me in that spot
I was just rolling into a boil
when you turned the heat down
I can't muster a simmer now
Why'd you go honey?
Why'd you honey let me go cold?

Saw you from my corner hide
I was just coming into my own
when you stepped into the light
I swore then heaven must be right
Why'd you go honey?
Why'd you honey let me go cold?
Please tell me why

I could've burned for you baby
Been that star in the night, that light to save ya

Now I'm here with just the facts
You took all the mystery when you left
There's something I can't live without
That sweet shadow of a doubt
Why'd you go honey?
Why'd you honey let me go cold?
Track Name: Coming for the Heart of Me
Hold my heart
Run these scars
with your helpless hands
then bury it in the cold, dark ground

When I rise
When I wake
from this bitter grief
I'll be coming for the heart of me

All the lies
the broken smiles
we lined up in a row
At every sign
we closed our eyes
We didn't wanna know
That some things aren't worth having
Some things are best left alone
ch2. Some things aren't worth keeping
Some things you gotta to let go
ch3. Some things aren't worth saving
Some things you gotta let go

Here's my role
Here's my part
every worthless line
Close the curtains, turn off the lights

Lost it all
Lost myself
chasing my own right,
Oh, the ache she refused to die

Wandering in ruins of the might have been
Staring at the dark clouds
You know the truth
like I know my guilt
Honey, we were never gonna come around
Track Name: Ochlockonee
Left my heart in a wishing well
Left Ochklocknee bound
Ain't no prayer
Ain't no will
Turn this boy around
Got me there an old Jon boat
rusty as a nail
Gonna find her
and put out for a spell

Left that girl sound a sleepin'
Left Ochlockonee bound
Ain't no note
Ain't no reason
ever gonna be found
Oh, by now she's probably waking
wondering where I am
She don't know, but I'm
Ochlockonee bound

Ochlockonee take me off my feet
O my soul in disbelief
Take me where you lead

Daddy had that old, brown picture
of an old riverboat
He said it was just the kind
his Daddy's Daddy rode
I could make my way to the Mississippi
put out from Cairo town
But I hear a call Lord, I'm Ochklockonee bound

Take me down far as able
Take me Ochlockonee down
I'm a trick
I'm a traitor
with a heap of guilt to drown
Momma said "All God's children
are jewels in heaven's crown."
I just don't know... Momma I'm
gonna find out
Track Name: Right Time Rain
Cold call, fingers crossed
holding for a moment lost, it's gone
Silence settles in
Question marks set the trap
Every period with a crooked catch, oh no
Now all you do is wonder when?

You're piling up your days
Counting every loss
Looking for a right time rain
Nothing's what it was
Leaving has its cost
Looking for a right time rain
Still looking for a right time rain

Paper trust before the flame
Love don't seem to spare the pain for anyone
She walked edge, but did she fall?
There's only so long they say before you'll
Oh, just close the door and walk
Would you go back if you heard her call?

Nothing's gonna take you back