Mark Lucas

Mark Lucas

 Danville, Kentucky, USA


Born and raised in Kentucky: backyard string bands, riverside hymn-sings, grandmother who sang Appalachian ballads. Played folk and country in acoustic duo then a roots band, eventually turning to Americana originals and opening for the likes of bluegrass legends Jim and Jesse. Went solo in '08 and set out to make an LP whose personal passions would be embodied in a cross-section of the American past. Titled Dust, that record released in 2010. The follow-up, Uncle Bones, is slated for May 2012.


Uncle Bones

Written By: Mark Lucas

V. 1: Way back in Hoot Owl Holler, young Dicey Harper
Died of a snakebite on her wedding day
Her truelove Orphie Coulter jumped down in the gravehole
"I'm bringing her back by God" was all that he would say
It broke every heart every night when he'd start
He'd lift his fiddle off its nail and make that horsehair wail

Chorus: "Uncle Bones, just once have mercy
Your love is cold and she's so young
Just let her go and I'll be your fiddler
I'll play for darkness from now on"

V. 2: Bones told Coulter, "You can go fetch your woman
She's in my cave on the Coaltown track
She'll be right behind you if you just keep on going
But she'll be mine to hold if you look back"
A glimpse of golden hair that vanished in the air
Out on the borderline he cast a look behind

Chorus: "Uncle Bones, damn your mercy
Your love is cold and now she's gone
She's yours to hold and I'm your fiddler
I play for darkness from now on"

V. 3: The trees in Hoot Owl Holler make a sound like someone's shivers
And the sawgrass in October's like a glimpse of golden hair
Coulter's dead and gone now, his cabin's just a chimney
But sometimes when the wind's up you'd swear that he's still there


Take Me Back, Water

Written By: Lucas/Thurman

V.1: She never did tell where she came from
And now no-one knew where she went
The miller just shivered and stared at the river
And wept on his knees for his sins
Rocks sewn in the pockets of her coat
She walked down to the river and got in a boat
A hunter's moon shone, the oars creaked and moaned
And a song echoed out through the cove

Chorus: Take me back, water, take me back home
Wash off this flesh and bleach out the bones
Hold me down like a stone
Take me back, take me home

V.2: Silken hair as sleek as an otter
Lay black down her back clear down to the water
Just ripples and wind in Cherokee Bend
The day he first lay down beside her
There was mystery in the strange river girl
One day she cried and the tear was a pearl
The jewel on her cheek left a milky white streak
And fell where the spillwater swirled


V.3: Temptation got under his skin
Till he made her shed tears again and again
But the miller had sorrow for all his tomorrows
When a boat full of pearls drifted in

Half-Chorus: Hold me down like a stone
Take me back, take me home