Chris Castle

Chris Castle

 Cleveland, Ohio, USA

Chris Castle's soulful voice and engaging lyrics rest easily over stripped-down skeletons of acoustic guitar that shuffle along dirt roads and through tired towns. His songs are shaded with longing, loss, and redemption. - Cleveland Magazine



Had Frank Lloyd Wright been born a songwriter, his parents might have named him Chris Castle. His attention to structure and detail bring writers like Bob Dylan or Paul Simon, though his Appalachian roots and midwestern dialect make Castle markedly more "country" than either.

Chris has shared stages with Hall of Fame inductees, Grammy winners and nominees, and cutting-edge Folk/Americana acts, including; Chris Hillman (the Byrds, the Flying Burrito Brothers), Radney Foster, Tommy Ramone (the Ramones, Uncle Monk), Jimmy Webb, Junior Brown, Jonathan Edwards, the Womack Family Band, Amy Speace, Will Kimbrough, Richard Shindell, the Wood Brothers, Jim White, the everybodyfields, Eilen Jewell, Jeff Black, and Jenny Owen Youngs.

Castle signed his first Nashville publishing deal when he was fifteen. As The (New London, CT) Day's Rick Koster put it "writing songs is utterly programmed into his DNA".

His 2007 breakthrough disc, Hollow Bones in Monotone, has garnered the indie songwriter a cult-like following in the US and beyond, establishing him as a pivotal player in today's new Folk movement. Castle recorded its follow-up at the Woodstock studio of American music legend Levon Helm (the Band, Bob Dylan).

He has released two additional albums since then, and is currently touring to promote his latest effort, Perfect World.


Rest My Weary Body

Written By: Chris Castle

If the girl I love had the strength of an army
and the babies that she gave me always fed
if the world was not a knife
and suffering not life
I'd still rest my weary body on her bed

If I looked to every animate horizon
while shaking sleep and dreaming from my head
and if I heard bluebirds sing
of the promise of most anything
I'd still rest my weary body on her bed

If my native land were not so strange and foreign
and I understood well, anything that anybody said
if my hands could feel to grip
the driftwood from this sinking ship
I'd still rest my weary body on her bed

If the sea can take the city of New Orleans
and the earth, and mud, and tide can claim
the dying and the dead
then there must be some way clear
a place where I could disappear
till I rest my weary body on her bed

Both Ends of A Gun

Written By: Chris Castle

I was running from a lynch mob
maybe running just to run
no, I was running like my old man
running like a drifter's son

Pulled that metal to the shoulder
and just let the engine run
and spent over an hour there
at both ends of a gun

Off this stone road sits a dirt lane
that separates two fields
where I used to like to go, to think
when I wasn't spinning wheels

Where the stars spread out forever
till they vanished in the sun
and I'd watch it all through a windshield
and from both ends of a gun

Now there comes a time in some men's lives
when it feels like all is lost
when the last decision left to make
is the army or the cross

Well I never was that disciplined
and my time of faith's long done
and amazing grace don't show her face
at both ends of a gun

In the spring of 1985 I was 9 years old
church folk pulled me aside
and this hillbilly preacher told me

Boy your daddy died in his car last night
out past townline forty one
and somebody whispered something
about both ends of a gun

There's a lighthouse on Lake Erie
but it don't shine no more
it's just some old, rusted out iron
with a primer grey door

I always wanted to swim to the other side
I just never had the lungs
and there ain't no treading water
from both ends of a gun

They say time can heal all wounds
I say not the ones that kill
those just leave you with a slow bleed
till you find a decent pill

But I felt them roll that stone away
first time I held my son
and I prayed he'd never greet a day
from both ends of a gun

Anymore, I'm thinking less about that door
preachers, stones, hollow bones,
all ancient metaphors

I've seen two-day sober junkies
I've heard women speak in tongues
ain't nothing good at either end...

Perfect World

Written By: Chris Castle

Bankers and politicians
Exchanging positions
Ever campaigning, man, buy, buy, buy
Same men who conceived and constructed
Religion in boxes
For three generations
Perfect world, perfect world

Actors and musicians
Necessary distractions
To wars and acquisitions
Close your eyes, close your eyes
Pay no attention
To the king behind the curtain
More confident than certain
Perfect world, perfect world

Fifty years of constant information
A billion screens all flickering
In time, all in time
A century vacations
While half a dozen voices
Scream six hundred stations
Perfect world, perfect world

Moneyed interests
Fuel mass ignorance
Piggyback the poor man
What a ride, what a ride, what a ride
They hide inside temples
Re-crucifying Jesus
Brewing corporate diseases
Perfect world, perfect world

As if position could keep you from the grave
As if everyone weren’t heading there
In line, in a line
Advance is an illusion
It moves in one direction
With a flawless execution
Perfect world, perfect world, perfect world

Copyright 2010, Dirtsandwich Music Company. (BMI)

And Julia Walks

Written By: Chris Castle

And I know a girl back home
I think we’ve all seen her kind
Nobody knows her well
Except what we’d hear in school

And everybody’d whisper “how pretty”
And figured there’s more to her story

And Julia walks with the dark overhead
And Julia said she’d succeed at anything
But Julia sleeps with a dog by her bed
And Julia believes what she said

And Julia walks on
And Julia walks alone

And I know she stole my phone
Cause she calls from time to time
Tells me she’s doing swell
And I ask if she’s still cool

And anytime I need some crazy story
She comes through with all of her glory

And Julia walks with the dark overhead
And Julia said she’d succeed at anything
But Julia sleeps with a dog by her bed
And Julia believes what she said

And Julia walks on
And Julia walks alone

Copyright 2010, Dirtsandwich Music Company. (BMI)



Perfect World (2010)

Songbook Volume I (2009)

Crazy Wind (2008)

*Recorded @ Levon Helm Studios & Squam Sound, by Justin Guip and Randy Roos.

Hollow Bones in Monotone (2007)

*Recorded @ OMNIsound Studios, by Bob Ingison.

Set List


Opening sets usually run 45 minutes, and consist of entirely original material.

Full nights (3 hours or more) are broken into 50 minute sets, with 10 minute breaks between each set. All original material, save one or two Paul Simon, David Gray or Bob Dylan covers.