Brian Hugh O'Neill

Brian Hugh O'Neill

 New York City, New York, USA
BandPop

Good, literate, poetic lyrics, warm. melodies. Masterful playing. Interesting content. I'd be REM if I could afford it.

Biography

Former front man and co-founder of acclaimed NYC based acoustic ensemble Minus Ted (minusted.com), Brian Hugh O'Neill composes beautiful, off-beat, melody driven acoustic tunes that cleverly employ fine poetry, verse and prose to tell literate, touching stories through personal observation of life's most intimate details.

He is also an award winning actor and playwright who has been working steadily in all aspects of the entertainment business as a musician, actor, writer, director and filmmaker for over 25 years. Mr. O’Neill lives in New York City with his wife and daughter.

www.brianhughoneill.com

You may also find him online as a regular guest host for the Onion News Networks show In The Know ( www.theonion.com)

Lyrics

Lucky Days

Written By: Brian Hugh ONeill

LUCKY DAYS

Sunrise and Dawn
Smokestacks begin to moan
And up from the street
The horse’s hoof and the cobblestone meet

Dressed to the nines.
Just the light of the radio dial
I’m on my way
Maybe things will be different today

I hear a lot about the Great Salvation that waits for me
But I put it all on the small chance
That there’s a reason I see what I see.

CHORUS:
One of these days
I will set the record straight
And show some fight
Take a swing at the moon some night, yeah
One of these lucky
One of these lucky days

These city lights
Fired up since late last night
Have begun to fade
Looks like rain today

I always watch my step
And keep a list of my dreams and regrets
And I’m still on the young side
Time is a friend of mine

You hear a lot about some bad situations
I’ve even lost a few friends
But I got a feeling I’m just a roll away
From when my number finally comes in

One of these days
I will set the record straight
And show some fight
Take a swing at the moon some night, yeah
One of these lucky
One of these lucky days

REPEAT CHORUS

Goodnight America

Written By: Brian Hugh O'Neill

GOODNIGHT AMERICA

To the boy on the bus left for the city too soon
Hung in the sky is a thumbnail moon
Now there’s a mother somewhere
In the Wisconsin night
Stares empty hearted at the waning light
A backdoor creaks, a cricket speaks
And the flight of the swallow over Devil’s Peak
Tell me, where does the truth go when you need it the most?
Truth sometimes just up and goes

Out at the airport men flag their guiding lights
And bring the last plane in off a maiden flight
As a Baptist preacher man loads the night shift into a cargo van
A bough breaks, and engine takes, and down in the hollow
The Union waits.
Tell me, where does the time go?
Where does the time go?
Where does all precious time go?

Because all my life it’s just a dream
Sky is blue, and the grass is green
So lay me down when the night rolls in
And if you stand me up it rolls out again

So it’s one for the money and two for the road
You better get yourself together ‘cause it’s time to go

CHORUS
Goodnight America, goodnight America
To all the people everywhere
Pull down you window shade and blow out your light
Goodnight America, goodnight

Because all my life it’s just a dream
Grass is blue, and the sky is green
So lay me down when the night rolls in
And if you stand me up it rolls out again

So it’s one for the money and two for the road
You better get yourself together ‘cause it’s time to go

CHORUS
Goodnight America, goodnight America
To all the people everywhere
Pull down you window shade and blow out your light
Goodnight America, goodnight

The moon is low
And the stars are right
Goodnight America.

RISE (September 12th, 2001)

Written By: Brian Hugh O'Neill

RISE (September 12th, 2001)

It’s calm tonight
On 12th Avenue the sirens
And the red, red lights
Have surrendered to the silence

But, oh, I know
That it’s only for a moment
And so she said
“Come rest your head
and lay down right beside me.”

Because these days
(I can’t explain it to myself)
I used to face it with my usual grace
That is before the sky fell
The sky fell

By and by
Depending on which way the wind blows
The ashes fly
And smoke gets in my windows
And the TV talk
Above the din of angry voices
I hear them say
“Someone must pay”
But they don’t say what the cost is

Everyone knows
Because we have to fill it
There is a hole there
That only grows
When you look into it
Because the sky fell
The sky fell

CHORUS
Rise. You will rise.
You will rise, and when you rise…

Beautiful, spacious skies
Forever in my eyes
High as the eagle flies
You will rise
For mountains majesty
From sea to shining sea
Far as the eye can see
You will rise
Rise

It’s calm tonight
On 12th Avenue the sirens
And the red, red lights
Have surrendered to the silence

Free World

Written By: Brian Hugh O'Neill

FREE WORLD

I want to fly away to Paris, France
I’ve never seen it
What understanding can you have of the world
When you only dream it?

But freedom is a delicate thing
Just when you think you have it
It turns into mercury
Right in your hand

You get a piece you call it property
Don’t take a genius
Give it a name you know it may well be
What I mean is:

Logic is a devil of a thing
Right when you believe it
It bends like the willow tree
Any way it can

CHORUS
Free world . Someone said it.
Free world. Darlin’, I get it
All my life, right from the start.
One thin line runs right through my heart

Some people put faith in objects, lists
And mundane things
Or talk in circles over spiritual gain
It is the same thing

All I know is what I see
I found you and you found me
And that’s what I see.

CHORUS
Free world . Someone said it.
Free world. Darlin’, I get it
All my life, right from the start.
One thin line runs right through my heart

I want to fly away to Paris, France
I’ve never seen it
What understanding can you have of the world
When you only dream it?

It's A Free World

Written By: Brian Hugh O'Neill

(IT'S A) FREE WORLD

The ring from the tea-cup is staring up at me
“I could” I thought. “I could take the heat”
Time was mostly I might let it pass
It just hits me hard when nothing lasts

Because I take as good as I get
And stay on my side of the street
I’m not afraid to admit one thing
Everybody wanna be a part of
One thing.

Sister when you gave this gift to me
Things were really not what they appeared to be.

Yeah, but if I choose again
I would not even think twice
And if I could change one thing
I would not change one thing

CHORUS
It’s a free world. Someone said it
It’s a free world. Isn’t it?
It’s a free world. I get it.
It’s a free world.

Mumbled our feelings
Shuffled our feet
Took vows of silence that lasted for weeks
That which releases you, delivers me
In a free world

Everybody needs a little fix
I am not immune at all to this
So give me twice what you think I deserve
Promise I won’t say another word (to you)

Because I take as good as I get
And stay on my side of the street
I’m not afraid to admit one thing
Everybody wanna be a part of one thing

CHORUS
It’s a free world. Someone said it
It’s a free world. Isn’t it?
It’s a free world. I get it.
It’s a free world.

Mara

Written By: Brian Hugh O'Neill


MARA

To each his own, what leads us home

Kid it’s anybody’s guess.

So dry your tears. This could take years.

I don’t know what else to say

It’s another long night in the valley, San Geronimo

Mara chants her affirmations

Puts a candle in the window of her home.

Night’s fast approach will soon take hold.

Flipping through the pages of her past.

I give time his due, he looks after you

Always at the point of such release.

It’s another long night in the valley, San Geronimo.

She counts her blessings, lights a candle in her home.

Mara sits among the statues in her rocking chair.

Burning little bits of paper with all her lonely,

Unanswered prayers.

Running silent conversations, pulling voices from the air.

Mara waits in desperation for the calling.

No one there, so we sing:

La la la la la la, la la la, yeah

Oh, free my soul.

La la la la la la, la la la, yeah

Oh, free my soul.

Free my soul

That's The Way It Goes

Written By: Brian Hugh O'Neill

THAT’S THE WAY IT GOES

Made the boat to New London from the north side
Checked a carload in of your artifacts
Through the rain, the vineyards
And the flashing yellow lights
The only sound was the tapping of the wipers
On the windshield

Nothing I can say would change the numbers
Moving on is easier said than done
When you’re old you get to fight
The battles with the good times
Some are lost and
A few of them are won

We’ve been over this before
That’s the way it goes
You can’t stay here anymore
That’s just the way it goes

All the work it takes to weave a lifetime
In the simple blinking of an eye
Staring at the faces in the pictures on the wall
Don’t say hello
Don’t say goodbye

We’ve been over this before
That’s the way it goes
You can’t stay here anymore
That’s just the way it goes

Yes, we’ve been over this before
That’s the way it goes
I can’t help you anymore
That’s just the way it goes.

Veteran's Day

Written By: Brian Hugh O'Neill

VETERANS DAY

On Lettingham Street
The cafés and barrows
The quays and the shadows
Of the low laying light

In the fisted procession
Of me stamping my feet
And the torn leather jacket you gave me
That keeps out the heat

I see in the tavern
‘Cross a cobblestone street
That the bar stools are empty
And turned upside down
Where the people should be

And the TV is on
But the sound is turned down
There’s a broadcast on
For the heavyweight crown

I come here in silence
I cover some ground
I turn every corner but lately
I don’t see you around

It’s November again
I am counting the days
All the names that we scrawled on the wall
Are covered and washed away
We carved them on Veterans Day

And down by the harbor
They’re putting the sailboats away
The slips are all empty
A wind ices over the bay
And I think the mouth of the river
Could swallow my fear
But it’s just sand and water
As I lean over a pier

At the drawbridge the surface
Is giving off heat
(Like a radiator mist)
For the last several weeks

It’s November again
I am counting the days
All the names that we scrawled on the wall
Are covered and washed away
We carved them on Veterans Day

Pattie Loved Me

Written By: Brian Hugh O'Neill

Patti Loved Me

I know what you’re thinking I have felt it all before

There is no way out

You cannot believe it happened

Why was she alone when she took the fall?

Help me I am falling

So much time I’ve wasted looking for someone to blame

I am falling.

It never really mattered, you can blame yourself.

Say what you want. All I know is

Patti loved me She could not stay very long

Patti loved me and now she is gone

And I don’t know why

I don’t know why.

When the fight is over, you know there is none.

I mean turning back.

It’s a trick of nature how on tender hearts

Shadows always fall

Help me I am falling

So much time I’ve wasted in the black and white

I am falling

This cannot be placed in terms of who is

wrong or right, all I know is

Patti loved me, she could not stay very long

Patti loved me, and now she is gone

And I don’t know why

I don’t know why.

Careful what You Want

Written By: Brian Hugh O'Neill

CAREFUL WHAT YOU WANT

Deb, I’m afraid
I always wanted to tell you that
But we don’t talk much anymore

I hear you say
You cannot help yourself these days
But this is not the city anymore

The light’s not very kind in this place
The flowers in the vase are tilting over
There’s a shadow moving over your face
It covers you like a veil

And all at once we fall into the same love
A moment passes, we forget
What we were thinking of

Careful what you want
I’m not worried
But careful what you ask for
You might get it

We have these chains
That tie us to a history
And if we take them off
What would happen?

It’s getting very late in the day
There’s still a little light left by the window
The shadow’s lifted off of your face
It covered you like a veil
And all at once we fall into the same love
A moment passes, we forget
What we were thinking of

Careful what you want
I’m not worried
But careful what you ask for
You might get it.
So careful what you want
Careful what you want
Careful what you want.

Discography

Hope and Damage - This Is This Music 1994

Really, Really - This Is This Music 2000

Free World - Independent release, Spring 2011