Patrick Nagel

Patrick Nagel

 Ukiah, California, USA
BandFolkAcoustic

Acoustically and lyrically driven singer/songwriter fare. Songs of sorrow, joy, redemption and purpose.

Biography

Singer/Songwriter from small Northern California town of Ukiah. Early influences were James Taylor, Jackson Browne, and Mississippi John Hurt. Recent influences are Steve Seskin, Johnsmith, John Gorka. My music is acoustic in nature.

Lyrics

The River in Me

Written By: Patrick Nagel

Born high on a mountain
Journey to the sea
Cutting out the canyons
Of sand and stone and history
Sometimes raging
Sometimes so serene
Flowing through the ages
Of man and mystery

And I
I watch you flow
For I
I wish to know
How
I could flow so free
And follow
The river in me

I was born under western skies
Not far from the sea
Climbing up the canyons
Burdened by my history
Sometimes raging
Sometimes so serene
Turning my life's pages
And haunted by it's mystery

And I
I watch you flow
For I
I wish to know
How
I could flow so free
And follow
The river in me

We fight the current upstream
Holding on so tight we can't see
One great truth in this life
In letting go we find
Our sight

(Descant:)
We fight...we push...stream
Hold tight...too blind...see
One truth...in this...life
Let go...we find...sight

So I
I watch you flow
For I
I wish to know
How
I could flow so free
And follow
The river in me
Follow
The river in me

I Heard the Angels Sing

Written By: Patrick Nagel

I heard the angels sing today
They'd come to bear his soul away
Gravity could not keep him here
Floating on faith he disappeared
Leaving behind this empty chair
Where we'd look to find him there

Gone is the famous boyish smile
The friend, the mentor, and the child
The father, the son, and husband too
The laser-like eyes that sought the truth
Leaving behind work undone
Leaving it for us to carry on

Many are the ones who endured his steely stare
Woe to the ones who came unprepared
Evasion found no comfort here
Those with much to hide had much to fear
Leaving behind a legacy
Power must possess integrity

I heard the angels sing today
They'd come to bear his soul
Away

Gravity could not keep him here
Floating on faith he disappeared

Cleaning Day

Written By: Patrick Nagel

Laundry piles lying on the floor
Dishes soaking in the sink will wait
Broom and dustpan leaning by the door
It looks like any other cleaning day

Vacuum droning as she hums along
Baby lies inside the crib nearby
She reminds herself what flight he's on
It's a warm October, autumn day outside

Outside, he boards the plane half a world away
Inside, she is making ready for this day
He is coming home
To stay

Changing the sheets on the double bed
His favorite cookies in the oven bake
Sorting through the boxes in the shed
She finds that dog-eared photo from their first date

She's received his email once a week
Read them to their baby every night
She'd caress his pillow and believe
Their love would last, they would survive

Survive, the duty and the danger and the wait
They've tried, to hold onto the promise of this day
He is coming home
To stay

(guitar interlude)

He is coming home
To stay

Laundry piles lying on the floor
But this is not any other cleaning day

Worth the Price

Written By: Patrick Nagel

When the fear of flying
Stops you cold
And you got doubt creeping in your mind
Take that chance
Leap that faith
It's worth it every time

Blackberry brambles
Grow deep and thick
A mid-summer treasure
Hard to resist
The tangled blossoms beckon
With a fruit so sweet
But the thorns will scar you
And make you bleed
Bleed...make you bleed

The majesty of a mountain top
Can call your name
Scaling to that rocky peek
You're never quite the same
It's an awesome panorama
For the eyes to see
But you get caught by the thunder storm
It'll cut you to your knees
Knees...to your knees

Now I know, I can see
There ain't no easy way
No joy comes for free
But it's worth the price you pay

The lonely heart will listen
To the siren song
With nights of surrender
In the dark 'til dawn
But love's harsh retreat
In the morning light
Can leave you lost and longing
And hurt your pride
Pride...hurt your pride

When the fear of flying
Stops you cold
And you got doubt creeping in your mind
Take that chance
Leap that faith
It's worth it every time

Now I've been scarred and bleeding
From the thorns
And I've been cut down to my knees
By the thunder storm
I have felt the lonely
In the siren's refrain
But I picked myself up again
You gotta love the rain
Rain...love the rain

I know, I can see
There ain't no easy way
No joy comes for free
But it's worth the price you pay

Nobody Left to Blame

Written By: Patrick Nagel

My old man made a cigarette run when I was only three
He never came back, never meant a damn thing to me
The ones who followed after beat the devil from my hide
But that just fed the anger inside

It was mama's chore to raise me
I'd like to say she tried
Between the lines on the mirror
The whiskey breath at night
When times got tough that porcelain god
Would hear her mournful plea
When her liver finally gave out
She was free

But there's nobody left to blame
There's nobody here to blame
For these four gray walls and concrete slab
Lying in the dark again
I got nobody here to blame

Thrown into the system
A ward of the state
Foster moms and preachers tried
To love away my hate
But I stood my ground, I broke their will
Wore my anger as a shroud
And I'd ask 'em, "How do you like me now?"

At fifteen I was homeless
Living out on the street
Where trust is not a currency
With anyone you meet
The hustlers and the junkies,
They would cut you for a dime
And your so-called friends would rob you blind

But there's nobody left to blame
No, there's nobody here to blame
For these four gray walls and concrete slab
Lying in the dark again
I got nobody here to blame

Been looking all my life
Who's to blame for my misery
When that jailer slams the door
I look around
There's only me

And there's nobody left to blame
No, there's nobody here to blame
For these four gray walls and concrete slab
Crying in the dark again
I got nobody, nobody, nobody left to blame

Helplessness

Written By: Patrick Nagel

Sheets are cold on his side of the bed
It takes a toll all those words left unsaid
She hasn't seen the kitchen in three days
Her mind screams when the sun pierces the shade

She listens to his last call again and again
It saps all her strength when he cries her name
Her dungeon's here across this Bridge of Sighs
Throbbing in her ears...pounding like the tide

When you're held down by the weight
You know there's no escape
Cursing God's mistake
You know
When the pills won't dull the pain
Night and day's the same
You're breaking from the strain
You know

Helplessness...helplessness

She's been trying to go back in time
To a life when there was laughter and wine
Before twin towers, fireballs, and missile planes
And the hours of waiting that drove her insane

When you're held down by the weight
You know there's no escape
Cursing God's mistake
You know
The pills won't dull the pain
Night and day's the same
You're breaking from the strain
You know

You know
You know
You know
You know

Helplessness...Helplessness...Helplessness...Helplessness

I Can Fly

Written By: Patrick Nagel

Gone are the days of pigtails and dolls
And other girlish things
Now that school's over I hear the world call
And it makes my heart sing

These are the days of passports and wine
And good friends at the end of the flight
I got my backpack, my rail pass, and time
And everything's alright

But Daddy, I know, you're gonna worry
Cause that's just your way
But I got my plans and I'm in a hurry today

You always told me to follow my dreams
That's what I'm trying to do
I'm a grown woman now with a path at my feet
And I think I've got something to prove

'Cause you always worried that I would fall
When I'd climb way up high
But you don't have to worry and Daddy
I'll tell you why

I can fly...fly
I can fly...fly

I sway in rhythm with the clicking of the rails
As the Irish country flies by
I listen to the beating of my hopeful heart
My body feels so light

I can fly...fly
I can fly...fly
I can fly...fly
I can fly...fly

I Can Fly

Written By: Patrick Nagel

Gone are the days of pigtails and dolls and other girlish things
Now that school's over I hear the world call and it makes my heart sing
These are the days of passports and wine and good friends at the end of the flight
I got my backpack, my rail pass and time, and everything's alright
But daddy, I know you're gonna worry
That's just your way
But I've got my plans and I'm in a hurry today

You always told me to follow my dreams and that's what I'm trying to do
I'm a grown woman now with a path at my feet and I think I've got something to prove
'Cause you always worried that I would fall
When I'd climb way up high
But you don't have to worry and daddy I'll tell you why

I can fly...fly; I can fly...fly

I sway in rhythm with the clicking of the rails
As the Irish country flies by
I listen to the beating of my hopeful heart
My body feels so light

I can fly...fly; I can fly...fly; I can fly...fly; I can fly...
Fly

What Can Last

Written By: Patrick Nagel

Thumbing through old pictures there was one that caught my eye
You were mugging for the camera with a joy too big to hide
And it hit me like a freight train to see that glowing smile
I heard the voice of my mother..."Don't you ever make her cry!"

We were just starting then, we had no desperate need
I was finishing college two days a week
It was long before the fault lines and the trembling shaking ground
When the laughter grew quiet and I disappeared without a sound

But the water flows under the bridge
You let it go, you forgive
And though I know it's better
Surrendering the past
Looking at that photograph I realize
What can last

Now time has been the healer for the wounding and the tears
And pastures of plenty have blossomed 'ore the years
But looking at that picture now I feel sorrow for my sins
And I pray that glowing smile will absolve me once again

And the water flows under the bridge
You let it go, you forgive
And though I know it's better
Surrendering the past
Looking at that photograph I realize

What can last when love is the foundation,
Children are the joy
Forgiveness is the song

And the water flows under the bridge
You let it go, you forgive
And though I know it's better
Surrendering the past
Looking at that photograph I realize
What can last
What can last
What can last

Faith Again

Written By: Patrick Nagel

The other day I heard a story about a dying man
Who made his way back to the living with a brother's helping hand
You see the burden ain't so heavy because brothers never weigh
Half as much as hearts do when we turn our eyes away
If we turn our eyes away

And on a holiday in Italy a little boy died years ago
In the wake of their deep sorrow his family made it known
They would leave behind the best of him so others there could live
It was a sacrifice inspired by an awesome will to give
It was an awesome will to give

And I know grace
And I feel safe when
I have faith again
When I have faith again
When I have faith...

Well I'm reminded of a young man saving starfish on the beach
And an old man comes to question how futile that might be
Well, the young man paused in answer as he let a starfish fly
It matters everything to that one and that's enough to make me try
It's only fruitless not to try

And I know grace
And feel safe when
I have faith again
When I have faith again
When I have faith...

Again
In songs of better angels
The sacrifice of strangers when they see someone in need

Oh, I know grace
And I feel safe when
I have faith again
When I have faith again and again and again
When I have faith
Again

(Descant)
I can see the grace in the helping hand people lend
And I feel safe when I can see the sacrifice of men
And I have faith when I can see that suffering will end
Again

The other day I heard a story 'bout a brothers helping hand

Discography

As The Last Leaves Fall
Savor These Days

New release (August '06) Yearnings

Set List

Usually a smattering of songs from CD's and whatever's new that I've got. Covers of Paul Simon, John Prine, James Taylor, Jackson Browne, and Cheryl Wheeler.