Christy Moore

Christy Moore

 Austin, Texas, USA
BandFolkCountry

Singer/songwriter. Literary country-western/folk. Lyric-driven songs about family, love, politics, and life.

Biography

I've come to songwriting the long way around which is why it's taken me so long to get here and why my bio is more trouble than it's worth. So instead of writing up where I came from and when, I'm posting the chords and lyrics to my most recent song -- "Unlikely" -- a work in progress about Barack Obama. I wrote this song because I wanted to record my feelings and experience of presidential election and to express my joy. I'd like to invite other songwriters to add to the song by writing other verses, use it to expand our record of what happened in 2008, think of it as an open source song. You can hear me singing the song on the mp3 file attached to this page or on youtube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fNaEpnguCJ8). If you do decide to write your own verse, please send me your lyrics.

Lyrics

Give and Take

Written By: Christy Moore

GIVE AND TAKE

Children were singing, Bells were ringing
The hopeful held their breath
While we made far-fetched promises
To cherish until death

We didn’t know then how the world would spin,
How many vows we could break,
Or that forgiveness was the only rule
In this game of give and take

REFRAIN

Take it to the limit.
Take it as it comes.
Take it easy. Take it on the chin.
Give up those old ghosts.
Give it all you’ve got.
Give back. Give up. Give in.
Then give and take again.

The preacher caught what old stories taught
And looked us in the face
Her voice flowed into the river of love.
Words of forgiveness and grace

Bearing a truth the years have proved:
You gotta die to live.
There’s more to love than singing birds.
It’s a labor of take and give.

REFRAIN

Here at home we’re on our own
Trading dreams for tears and sweat
Trying to learn by heart the hardest part
To forgive and forget.

It’s not paradise; love has a price
With ev’ry heartbeat and ev’ry breath.
But at the end of the day, we still pray
We’ll be giving and taking till death.

REFRAIN

Visions of Yesterday

Written By: Christy Moore

Visions of Yesterday

Verse 1
I see women on the front porch
In rockers shelling peas
Catching hulls in their aprons
Bowls resting on their knees
I’m half listening to their talk
On the steps up in the shade
Watching faces in the clouds, shift,
Like visions of yesterday, and fade.

REFRAIN:
You could see the Double Mountains
Nearly all the way to God.
At night the stars were bright
And the Milky Way was broad.
The world was full of simple glories
Like the pitch of a coyotes howl
Like lighting from ten miles away
Or the wing span of an owl.

Verse 2
My uncles sit in straight-backed chairs
After supper out in the yard.
Cranking ice cream in the freezer
Swapping stories till it gets hard.
I’m playing hide and go seek
With the wild bunch I call kin
In the glow of a painted sky
That makes a spectacle of day’s end.

REFRAIN

Verse 3
I’m riding high in the saddle
Of a chinaberry tree
With my skin against the bark
I’m as alone as I can be,
But that’s not how it felt
In the gentle wind’s embrace.
Sometimes I miss the people back then
I always miss the place.

REFRAIN

She Crossed Over

Written By: Christy Moore

Verse 1
It was morning when Emma crossed the Red
On a buckboard with Sister ‘n Jeff
And Papa holding the reins
On ev’rything that they had left
She had a knot in her chest
and a picture of her mother in her head
As she swallowed hard and held on tight
And wondered what lay ahead.

Refrain
It’s a long ways from Indian territory
To the first man on the moon.
It’s a long ways from Ronald Reagan
To Davy Crockett and Daniel Boone.
She crossed over from another time,
Another place, another thought.
From an unplowed plain to a brave new world
She crossed a river of wonders wrought.

Verse 2
The sun was high; the covered wagon was wide.
She held two babies and the reins,
Facing the roaring Pecos,
Thinking of people who took trains.
In the saddle Charley took the lead
And pulled the team into the tide.
She squared her jaw as they plunged t’ward
The cowboys watching from the other side.

Refrain

Verse 3
At the Clear Fork she let me take the wheel
And drive her Chevy home,
Acting like it was nothing
Treating me like I was grown.
All the children she’d raised rose in her heart
The falling sun danced above the field.
As I sat up tall to steer across the bridge
A new world gleaming through her windshield.

Verse 4
Silver-haired and fading one night she lay in bed
Dreaming of a glorious river
And Papa standing in the twilight
Waiting to deliver
Her safely to the other side
Just like that dawn they crossed the Red.
She took his hand and held on tight
And wondered what lay ahead

The Way I Feel About You

Written By: Christy Moore

The Way I Feel About You
by Christy Moore

If I were a sailor out on the ocean blue,
I’d watch the stars at night and say a prayer for you.
And if I were a tailor, sewing a rich man’s suit,
I’d dream of being rich and giving you all my loot.
And if I were a failure, falling down and hurt,
I’d remember you and get up out of the dirt.

Refrain:
So go to sleep, my darling.
Don’t you worry ‘bout a thing.
I could be a thief, a gypsy, or a king.
I pirate or a baker or a keeper at the zoo --
Nothing’s gonna change the way I feel about you.

If I were a tinker, tinking on a broken pan
I’d think of teachng your to tink; that’d be my plan.
And if I were in the clinker, paying for my crime,
The thought of seeing you’d give me strength to do my time.
And if I were a singer who could find the truth in words,
I’d sing a song for you as true as a bird’s.

Refrain
Repeat Refrain
Ending
It’s bigger than anything I could ever be or do.

Driving Across Texas

Written By: Christy Moore

Driving Across Texas

We were driving across Texas.
The sky was so blue.
We saw a hawk take wing,
And we followed as he flew.
We were out of our cage
On that high lonesome plain
Out hunting for hope
Breaking from pain

We were singing an old song
Where the buffalo roam
We’d left rules and alarm clocks
Behind us at home
The heartache and loss
And the death passed away
As we headed out west
And drove into the day

We were counting the windmills
Breathing air filled with peace
For the first time in a long time
I saw life was a feast
And I knew that
The greatest gift on my ride
Was sitting right there
In the sun by my side.

We’d started across Texas,
You and me on our own,
Still missing all we’d lost
Still feeling all alone.
But I arrived on that crossing
At just what it’s worth
Travelling with you
Across this sweet earth.

Saying Grace

Written By: Christy Moore

Saying Grace

If I had been a better man
I’d have beaten this mountain by now
I’d’ve spent my life studying the view
And living out the vow.

Way up high on the mountain top
Up close to where the angels sing
Above the blood and the fists down below
I might have passed my days like a king

Then I would have missed the hurt,
The struggle, the sweat, the feeling blue,
The way the whole wide world stood still
When she left me in 92.

Way up high on the mountain top
Up close to where the angels sing
Living my life in perfection and peace
Never knowing the snake or the sting.

But it’s not just the light that I crave.
I want the secrets in the dark just as much.
No matter how truly I love you.
I still close my eyes when we touch.

Way up high on the mountain top
Up close to where the angels sing
Beyond the commotion of passion and lies
I would have missed your song’s clear ring.

A pilgrim takes a million steps
Both the false and the sure weave the story
The fall and the climb as much as the peak
Are what make the mountain a glory.

Way down here on the mountain side
Where sinners look up and pray,
I give thanks for the distance I’ve come
And every boulder that’s stood in my way.

Yes, way down here on the mountain side
Where sinners look up and pray,
I give thanks for the distance I’ve come
And every boulder that’s stood in my way.

Copyright 2008 Christy Moore

If I had taken a higher path cfc
I might have beaten this mountain by now cg
I’d’ve spent my life studying the view cfc
And living out the vow. cgc

Way up high on the mountain top fc
Up close to where the angels sing fg
Above the fists and the blood down below fc
Clear of every unkind thing cgc

Then I would have missed the hurt, cfc
The struggle, the sweat, the feeling blue, cg
The way the whole wide world stood still cfc
The day my love broke in two

If I had taken a higher path cfc
I might have beaten this mountain by now cg
I’d’ve spent my life studying the view cfc
And living out the vow. cgc

Way up high on the mountain top fc
Up close to where the angels sing fg
Above the fists and the blood down below fc
Clear of every rough, mean thing cgc

Then I would have missed the hurt, cfc
The struggle, the sweat, the feeling blue, cg
The way the whole wide world stood still cfc
The day my love was broke in two

If I had taken a higher path cfc
I might have beaten this mountain by now cg
I’d’ve spent my life studying the view cfc
And living out the vow. cgc

Way up high on the mountain top fc
Up close to where the angels sing fg
Above the fists and the blood down below fc
Clear of every rough, mean thing cgc

Then I would have missed the hurt, cfc
The struggle, the sweat, the feeling blue, cg
The way the whole wide world stood still cfc
When love died and my heart broke in two

When I lost love so true. cgc

Saying Grace
If I had taken a higher path cfc
I might have beaten this mountain by now cg
I’d’ve spent my life studying the view cfc
And living out the vow. cgc

Way up high on the mountain top fc
Up close to where the angels sing fg
Above the fists and the blood down below fc
Clear of every rough, mean thing cgc

Then I would have missed the hurt, cfc
The struggle, the sweat, the feeling blue, cg
The way the whole wide world stood still cfc
When I lost my love so true.. cgc

Way up high on the mountain top fc
Up close to where the angels sing fg
Living my life in perfection and peace fc
Never knowing the snake or the sting. cgc

But it’s not just the light that I crave. cfc
I want the secrets in the dark just as much. cg
No matter how truly I love you. cfc
I still close my eyes when we touch. cgc

Way up high on the mountain top fc
Up close to where the angels sing fg
Beyond the commotion of passion and lies fc
I would have missed your song’s sweet ring cgc.

A pilgrim takes a million steps cfc
Both the false and the sure weave the story cg
The fall and the climb as much as the peak cfc
Are what make the mountain a glory. cgc

Way down here on the mountain side fc
Where sinners look up and pray, fg
I give thanks for the distance I’ve come fc
And every boulder that’s stood in my way. cgc

Saying Grace
If I had taken a higher path cfc
I might have beaten this mountain by now cg
I’d’ve spent my life studying the view cfc
And living out the vow. cgc

Way up high on the mountain top fc
Up close to where the angels sing fg
Above the fists and the blood down below fc
Clear of every rough, mean thing cgc

Then I would have missed the hurt, cfc
The struggle, the sweat, the feeling blue, cg
The way the whole wide world stood still cfc
When love’s last breath came

Crazy Enough

Written By: Christy Moore


You were a fountain in the desert.
You were a haven from the chase.
You were a band of singing angels
When I had given up on grace.
You caught me when I was falling
You taught the blind to see
Best of all you were crazy
Crazy enough to be crazy about me

When you found me I was lost
A sleepwalker on a ledge.
The years&miles since you woke my heart
And pulled me back from the edge
Can’t dim your shining light
I don’t know what I’d do
Or where I’d be
If you hadn’t been crazy enough
To fall crazy in love with me.

You were a fire when I was freezing
You were the wind on a still sea
You were the key to the prison cell
When I’d stopped hoping to be free
You caught me when I was falling
You turned the crooked true
I never was crazy enough
To pretend I wasn’t crazy about you.

When you found me I was lost
A sleepwalker on a ledge.
The years&miles since you woke my heart
And pulled me back from the edge
Can’t dim your shining light
I don’t know where I’d be
Or what I’d do
If I hadn’t had enough good sense
To fall crazy in love with me you.

Discography

Saying Grace (Finalist in the Austin Songwriter Contest -- Singer/Songwriter category)
Give and Take
She Crossed Over
Driving Across Texas
Living Without
Visions of Yesterday
Still
Back Where I Began (video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z1OaaaoafO8&feature=PlayList&p=2E01EB22A82C8874&playnext=1&index=5)

Set List

Lyrics and Music by Christy Moore:
Nothing in All Creation 3:50
Driving Across Texas 2:25
She Crossed Over:
A Song for My Grandmother 5:40
Give and Take 2:33
A Moment Like This 3:18
Visions of Yesterday 3:17
Beat the Devil 4:20
Crazy Enough 3:27
Saying Grace 3:50
Living Without 3:37

Lyrics by Lyn Phillips, Music by Christy Moore:
I'm Glad It's You 4:16
Still 2:46