Bourgeois Gypsies

Bourgeois Gypsies


In the last year the Bourgeois Gypsies have played 3 major festivals, performed over 150 dates and their new CD Faulty Fairytales is currently #6 on the jambands charts in Jan. Relix


Featuring freewheeling musical wanderings through countrified blues, slinky swamp ballads and homespun hillbilly heartbreaks, the Bourgeois Gypsies mix slow-burning, porchsetting music with poignant punk lullabies that make you tap your feet, clutch your heart and shake your head all at the same time. With incessant gigging in jukejoints, festivals and smoky roadhouses across the country, the Gypsies are quietly building their following the old fashioned way, one night at a time.

The Bourgeois Gypsies formed when Arnold Mitchem, a high desert troubadour collided with Kaisa MacDonald, the inn-keeping, firespinning spawn of a gypsy in the café of a clothing-optional hot springs resort. Thrown together for an impromptu open mic session, the two musicians realized that their styles clicked and their abilities complemented each other. Two cd’s, countless gigs and a few additional band members later the Gypsies are gearing up for prime time with their latest release.

Their second original CD “Faulty Fairytales,” resonates with songs of knightless dragons and princesses without towers and captures a shambling syncopation flirting with dissonance that clings to your soul and peeks through windows of a bygone era, and leaves you with one word … “More”.

"It’s sometimes quirky like the Zappaesque “Train Song”, sometimes tender like the bluegrassy “Can’t Lose You,” sometimes just acoustic guitar-driven with a wonderful female vocalist like “Bluebirds,” and sometimes blues/rock like “Gypsy Girl.” - Skope

"Get yourself a copy of “Faulty Fairytales” so you can bring the free-living, mountain-loving, blues-folk-funk-rock into your home. The album will bring you into a fairytale world of bluebirds, and lovers, and life’s great wonders." - Moonshine Ink

Kaisa MacDonald is kind of a blend of Joni Mitchell and Edie Brickell. She has that kind of Bohemian/folk vibe embodied in both of those artists. That being said, Kaisa is a pretty unique singer who requires a unique term. And so dear reader, I will venture to classify Kaisa MacDonald's style and sound as soulfolk."
- Anti-Music



Written By: Mitchem/MacDonald

Wish I was an apple swinging from a tree.
My baby walk by take a bite out of me.
Told me that she loved me called me sugarplum,
throwed her arms around me
thought my time had come.
She got religion had it once before
told me that she lost it on the kitchen floor.

My little lady, she's so sweet.
Ruby red lips and a freckle on her cheek.
Telling everybody it's a fine affair
Ain't your business,
but I'm getting my share

I got a little lady, she lives down South
Her lips so sweet, the bees swarm her mouth
I took my baby to the fishin hole
She like to fish, but she got no pole
Took my baby to the laundromat
Brought her in skinny and she come back fat

Told my baby I could make holler
Said she couldn't come if I wouldn't follow.
Baby said she loved me on the telephone,
tried to call her back but she wasn't home.
I went knockin on my baby's door,
thought I'd get lucky but there ain't no more.

Gypsy Girl

Written By: Mitchem/MacDonald

She said she'd want to be a gypsy girl
Join the Bourgeois-Z
She said she's out to see the world
There's so much for her to see

She's a nomad, She's a traveler.
Chase the mystery,
Race the moon across the sky
to the stormy sea,
Hears the mystic in the music,
Dancing violins.
Embrace the moment with abandon
and whirl away in dreams

She's the stillness in the chaos,
the rhythm in the stars.
She's the beauty in the fire
as the evening fades.
Knows her nature and her sunlight,
she's a renegade.
She's the movement and the storm
with the wind and rain

She's the dancer in the light,
the beat that never fades.
See her freedom know her soul,
just to hear her play.
She's the singer, distant voice.
A caravan at night
She's a stranger like no other
so whirl away in dreams

Pink Clouds

Written By: Mitchem/Revels

I can't read between the lines
Is there something you could say
We could talk about the weather
Won't you come outside today
How the silence deafens,
It just grows inside us
Watch the blue skies turn to gray
Just forget your past
Remember all your future
Won't you come outside and play

Just a smile from you
Can make the whole thing over
We could have a sunny day
I ain't got forever
Let's just make it better.
Even pink clouds go away

I can't read between the lines
Come outside your head and play
We could open up the present
And have a laugh on yesterday

Middle of Nowhere

Written By: Mitchem/MacDonald

I'll be on my way somewhere, someday
Don't know where I'm going
But all roads lead that way.
Gotta get out of this life
So I can be free.
Middle of nowhere is fine with me

If I could I would walk all day and night
Find myself at dawn in another place
I don't care what road I take
Out of this house, Out of this heartbreak

I'm sick and tired of this lack of grace
Sick and tired of seeing this face
I must run for my own sake
Middle of nowhere is fine with me

Unsquare Dance

Written By: Arnold Mitchem/ Kaisa MacDonald

Perpetually we’re in motion
Always moving round and round
Everything is always changing
So your up and then you’re down
Say you love me then you hate me
Nothing ever lasts that long
Tell me why you’re running baby
What was right well now is wrong

Wonder, wonder, wonder why

Perpetually we’re in motion
Always changing never still
Everything is always moving
So the truth is what you feel
First you’re young and then your older
That’s the way life seems to be
Nothings ever gained from trying
Just relax and let it be

Perpetually we’re in motion
Always moving round and round
Everything is always changing
First you’re up and then you’re down
Now the dance goes on and on
Where we stop we never know
People changing I don’t think so
They’re all trying to let go

Everything is always circles
Nothing ever turns out square
Just relax and take your turn
We’re all trying to get there


Written By: Kaisa MacDonald

And I’m stuck here so tightly wound
Trying to find a way to get my feet on the ground
And I don’t want to waste your time
Wasting away the time while I’m trying to find my mind

But Oh…
Don’t leave me behind
Falling from your mind
But Oh…
There’s no telling where we’ll go
What seeds we’ll sow

And I’m slipping through these mental cracks
How do I go forward oh how do I go back
And it’s tempting to run away
Stay up all night and sleep through the day

And I’m aching all though my bones
Swear I’ve spent too many of my days alone
And it’s tempting to run away
Stay up all night and sleep through the day

Can't Lose You

Written By: Arnold Mitchem/ Kaisa MacDonald

Can’t lose you in the arms of strangers
Can’t lose you in alcohol
Can’t lose you in reckless nights
Can’t lose you at all

In the morning when the sun comes up
And you roll through my mind
I’d like to think that it’s changing
But I’m just killing time

I’m rolling on down that old highway
And another long day it is done
I’m getting the same damn results
No results at all

I’m coming down from the mountain
And I’m drenched through to my soul
I call your name to the angels
Cuz I just can’t take the fall

Stayed Out Late

Written By: Arnold Mitchem/ Kaisa MacDonald

Keep looking away
Your eyes tell the truth
Revealing the moment
Till I find the proof
The harder you try
The further we fall
This trains going nowhere
I can lose it

I stayed out late, I came home late
I woke up late, now I’m in too deep
Where is this, who are you
And what am I supposed to do
Shake me

Alone in your room
Late in the night
Something was said
You’re never satisfied
Keep pushing my cage
And pulling my chain
We’re going nowhere
I can lose it

Alone on the road
With no end in sight
We’re going crazy
And I can lose it


Written By: Mitchem/MacDonald

I was sitting in my car
You were breaking apart a star
Teardrops of light coming falling down
I watch them hit the ground
It's all so bright
When you come around

As tempting as you are
Slinging arrows from afar
You send them raining down
I watch them hit the ground
It's all so hard
When I'm coming down


Written By: Mitchem/ MacDonald

Dilettantes and silver fonts
Trapped inside your arms
Tell me why bluebirds fly
And you fall down to me

Dissonance was in your eyes
When you looked at me that day
Tell me why, tell me why
Don't you fly away

Late at night angels fight
Singing senseless melodies
Tell me why bluebirds fly
And you fall down to me

Solitude, oh so rude
Sinking into sleep
Take me down, take me down
Down into the deep

You'll fall down to me

Grandiose counterparts
Tempt me with their charms
Tell me why bluebirds fly
And you fall down to me

Simplicity eludes my dreams
Whiling way the time
Foolish now and heartfelt then
Oh how you shine


Written By: Mitchem/MacDonald

Captivating cattleprods and scintillating sheepyards
I’ve been a country girl too long
Take me to the city
Buy me something pretty
Get the smell of horseshit out of my hair

Traffic jams of herding cows, tractors & snowplows
I’ve been a country girl too long
Take me to the city
Buy me something pretty
Darling won’t you show me the news

Cuz’ baby ain’t it shitty when the landscapes so pretty
and still I’ve got these country girl blues

Train Song

Written By: Mitchem/MacDonald

Everybody’s waiting at the station on the train
They all came to greet him but they don’t know his name
Someone ran before us with a suitcase in his hand
The train kept rolling to the Promised Land

The train kept rolling all night lo9ng
Everybody sing your favorite song
The train kept rolling and the tracks out ahead
There ain’t no forgiveness when your dead

The stormclouds are gathering we’ll be leaving rather soon
Rolling down the track and howling at the moon
Every night’s a party every days a whole day long
So sell your soul for comfort just to hear your favorite song

Gypsies spinning fire and there’s magic in the air
It all gets so confusing from the chaos everywhere
River keeps a risin and the rain is comin down
The fat lady sings you’ll know that we’re in town


Blue Morning ~ 2006
Faulty Fairytales ~ 2008

From Blue Morning: Gypsy Girl, Sugarplum, Slide, Pink Clouds, Skin & Middle of Nowhere receivied airplay on over 400 radio stations worldwide and streaming sites/podcasts

Faulty Fairytales is currently at # 4 on the Relix Jambands Radio Charts

Set List

We play primarily original material from our cd's "Blue Morning" and "Faulty Fairytales". A typical set list includes:

Pink Clouds
Bad Dreams
Unsquare Dance
Dry Land
Life's Little Meanings
Middle of Nowhere
Can't Lose You
Gypsy Girl
Falling from your Mind
Tell My Baby not to Worry

90 Minutes, 15 - 18 songs

Songs we like to cover include:
Dead Flowers (Rolling Stones)
Can't You See (Marshall Tucker)
Down By The River (Neil Young)
California Stars (Woody Guthrie/Billy Bragg & Wilco)
Corrina (Taj Mahal)
Sixteen Tons (Tennessee Ernie Ford)
Angel from Montgomery (John Prine)
Mercury Blues {KC Douglas}