Joel Rafael

Joel Rafael

BandFolkAcoustic

The Joel Rafael Band have been performing together for 11 yrs. In 2005, they released their 5th CD, Woodyboye: Songs of Woody Guthrie Vol. II on Appleseed w/ 4 new Guthrie lyrics w/ music written by Rafael. Rolling Stone gave it 3 stars!

Biography

JOEL RAFAEL
Joel Rafael is an award winning, internationally recognized songwriter from San Diego County, California. Among his accomplishments was winning the Kerrville Folk Festival "New Folk Emerging Songwriter Award" in 1995.

Rafael is also considered to be one of the most natural interpreters of Woody Guthrie's songs, and has been a featured performer at the annual Woody Guthrie Folk Festival in Woody's hometown of Okemah, Oklahoma since it's inception a decade ago. His two most recent CDs on Inside Recordings (an independent record company started by Jackson Browne and his management team) contain over two-dozen Woody Guthrie compositions including five previously unpublished Woody Guthrie lyrics to which Rafael composed the music. The lyrics were given to Joel by Nora Guthrie, Woody's daughter, who directs the "Woody Guthrie Archives" and administrates the use of Woody's written and illustrated works.

Rafael has three other recordings of original material, and is currently working on a new album of his own songs. He has toured the U.S. extensively over the last decade both as a solo artist and with the Joel Rafael Band (Jamaica Rafael on violin, Carl Johnson on guitar, and Jeff Berkley on percussion). Rafael is a member of the national touring cast of "Ribbon Of Highway Endless Skyway" (a revue honoring Woody's songs and writings), which also features Sarah Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion, Jimmy LaFave, Bob Childers, Eliza Gilkyson, Slaid Cleaves, Terri Hendrix and Lloyd Maines.

Lyrics

Ball & Chain

Written By: Joel Rafael

Ball And Chain
Words and music by Joel Rafael

I don’t want to be your ball and chain
I don’t want to be the one to hold you down
I just want to be your every thing
I don’t want to be your ball and chain
I don’t want to be the anchor on your boat
Keeping you from moving as you float
I just want to be like a lighthouse shining bright
Helping you to get back home on a foggy night
I don’t want to be your ball and chain
I don’t want to be the one to hold you down
I just want to be your every thing
I don’t want to be your ball and chain
I don’t want to be your prison cell
Sure don’t want to be your living hell
I just want to be like a shelter from the raging storm
I want to be the fire that keeps you warm
I don’t want to be your ball and chain
I don’t want to be the one to hold you down
I just want to be your every thing
I don’t want to be your ball and chain

Rivers and Rain

Written By: Joel Rafael

There is nothing like the sound of a river rolling down
From a higher elevation over rocks through canyons
On it’s way down to the ocean
To a final destination

And when it gets to the sea it returns to the sky
The Sun’s evaporation. . .rain takes a vacation
Back to the heavens
Back to the creation

There is nothing like a river sound
Nothing like when the rain comes down (chorus)
There is nothing like a setting sun
Going down when the day is done

And when the rain comes down it waters the land
Turns rocks into sand and a soil that is fertile
That we work with our hands
Like the whole thing was planned

There is nothing like a river sound
Nothing like when the rain comes down (chorus)
There is nothing like a setting sun
Going down when the day is done

Rivers and Rain

Written By: Joel Rafael

There is nothing like the sound of a river rolling down
From a higher elevation over rocks through canyons
On it’s way down to the ocean
To a final destination

And when it gets to the sea it returns to the sky
The Sun’s evaporation. . .rain takes a vacation
Back to the heavens
Back to the creation

There is nothing like a river sound
Nothing like when the rain comes down (chorus)
There is nothing like a setting sun
Going down when the day is done

And when the rain comes down it waters the land
Turns rocks into sand and a soil that is fertile
That we work with our hands
Like the whole thing was planned

There is nothing like a river sound
Nothing like when the rain comes down (chorus)
There is nothing like a setting sun
Going down when the day is done

Discography

ALBUMS
2005 - Woodyboye: Songs of Woody Guthrie (and tales worth telling) Volume II (Appleseed Recordings), ***, Rolling Stone, May 19, 2005 issue

2003 - Woodeye: Songs of Woody Guthrie (Inside Recordings)

2000 - Hopper (Inside Recordings), AFIM Best Contemporary Folk nominee

1996 - Old Wood Barn (Reluctant Angel Records), GAVIN Magazine Americana Hot Pick

1994 - Joel Rafael Band (Reluctant Angel Records), 1994 California Country Music Award

COMPILATIONS
2003 - Spain In My Heart (Appleseed Recordings)

2001 - The Folkscene Collection, Volume III (Red House Records)

2001 - If I Had A Song: The Songs of Pete Seeger, Volume II (Appleseed Recordings)

Set List

Set lists vary depending on the venue played, i.e. house concert, festival, evening with, show opener.

The set typically consists of a mixture of Joel Rafael's original songs, and co-written Joel Rafael / Woody Guthrie compositions (Working with the Guthrie family, and Archives & Foundation, Joel has written music for several unpublished poems). Current repertoire consists of songs from Woodyboye 2005 release.