Tall Trees EP

by Vocal Few

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    Six-panel DigiPack CD of the Tall Trees EP. None of that jewel case business... made from top-quality paper stuff. Includes digital download of album one week before release.

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    Limited edition 12" vinyl pressing of the Tall Trees EP in 33 1/3 RPM format. The gatefold jacket includes four square-foot panels of beautiful art/photography to look at while the record spins. Includes digital download of album one week before release.

    *NOTE Our vinyl order is late, so sadly we won't be able to ship until 8/15. But you will receive the digital download immediately upon purchase to hold you over until you receive your physical copy. Thank you for your support and your patience!

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about

Since the release of “She’ll Be Right” in January of 2012, life for the MacDonalds’ has been… busy. After SBR debuted at #3 on the iTunes Singer/Songwriter charts and #8 on the Billboard Folk charts, Vocal Few decided it might be a good idea to play a show or two. So they did, and it culminated in the completion of their first Living Room Tour in July of that same year (with infant child in tow).

The hope for the SBR EP was to raise money to help with expenses following the arrival of the MacDonald’s firstborn daughter, Praise. As it turns out, many diapers were purchased - and miraculously, the Macs were able to take care of some nagging debt they had accumulated while Matt was gallivanting across the countryside for the last decade. It afforded them the ability to pay the rent and purchase health insurance and take care of their basic needs. Not only that, and perhaps more importantly, it seemed to connect with people on a deeper level. Basically the SBR EP was, much to Vocal Few’s surprise, a happy success. So why not keep it going?

What started out as a one-time project has turned into, well, at least a two-time project. This is partially because Vocal Few really enjoy making music together, partially because the demand is there, and partially because Kristie is pregnant again.

That’s right, the Macs are soon to become a family of four. What? That idea sounds crazy to Matt, because he still feels like a child (he was emotionally stunted from spending his twenties driving around the country in a van). Kristie is really excited, though, because she is living her dream. So Matt has hunkered down and done the only thing he knows how to do, which also happens to be his dream: To make music.

This new music is called the Tall Trees EP. It is called this because several months before it’s conception the MacDonald family moved out of their tiny, one-bedroom, urban apartment and into a small suburban house amongst a smattering of ancient trees. There’s a certain feeling that comes over them as they drive along their street. Gone are the tall buildings, the hustle and bustle of city life, the busses rumbling by their window... It’s quiet. There’s something calming about living in the shadows of trees as tall as skyscrapers. They’re hundreds of years old, and over time their roots have become expansive networks lodged deep into the dirt, holding the foundations of their communities together. It’s a calming and inspirational metaphor for starting a family.

The Macs are growing roots that will hopefully become a metaphorical “tall tree” in the future - a legacy of peace and security that only comes from planting and nurturing a natural thing. The Tall Trees EP is another step towards something more stable, and Kristie, Praisie, Matt, and the new one all depend on its ability to reach and resonate deep within people. They hope that through listening, others like them can share in the joys and struggles of living simply. They thank you for being a part of their adventure.

credits

released 21 May 2013

Produced, Engineered and Mixed by Matt MacDonald

Mastered for vinyl and CD by Troy Glessner at Spectre Mastering
(www.spectrestudio.com)

All songs written by Matt MacDonald (Scotsman ASCAP), except “Afraid (Interlude),” which was written by Kristie MacDonald and Matt MacDonald

Violin on “The Road,” “One Day Soon,” and “Good Enough” played by Jodi Bagge

Group Vocals on “The Road” and “One Day Soon” sung by Dan Koch, Torry Anderson, and Brian Hibbard of Wayfarer (www.wayfarerhymns.com)
Additional vocals on “Afraid (Interlude)” sung by Jaffrey Koch

Intro song clip from “Simple and Free” was sung by “Pops,” a local Seattle street musician. It was recorded in front of Streamline Tavern with an iPhone.

Photography by Alex Herbig

Album Art Design by Eric Kimberlin Bowley

Copyright 2013 Vocal Few

Thank you for supporting our music and family by purchasing this recording. We could not do this without you. Please accept our deepest gratitude.

-Vocal Few

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Track Name: The Road
I was driving back west through the patches of fog
We had the brights turned on and we listened to songs
I didn’t know it then but I was right where I needed to be
You were back at home you were working a job
And you were hanging out nights with your friends at the bar
You didn’t know it then but you were right where you needed to be

When all you have is what’s inside your pocket
And all your dreams seem stuck up on the shelf
Well you’d best prepare the way for change is comin’
Cause the road will always take you somewhere else

I was waking up to the sound of the raindrops while you
Were in the southeast sleeping in truck stops
I didn’t know it then but I was right where I needed to be
You were making friends with people I’d never meet and I was
Praying to God that your band would succeed
I didn’t know it then but you were right where you needed to be

When all you have is what’s inside your pocket
And all your dreams seem stuck up on the shelf
Well you’d best prepare the way for change is comin’
Cause the road will always take you somewhere else

Don’t forget
All you’ve ever wanted is yours

Well the east coast is busy and the west coast is wild
The south keeps it steady while the north rolls around
And somewhere in the middle there are some towns that no one knows
Where every local kid comes out to every local show
Oh the road will always take you somewhere
Track Name: Misunderstood
It is harder than you know
To draw water from a stone
I’ve been trying for years
Still there’s nobody home

You pick my brain like I got something
Good to say about why we’re here
It’ll be years before I can answer

Remember that I
I never claimed to know the answers
I’ve just been searching for the good
Because at my best I’m a filthy sinner
And at my worst I’m misunderstood

It is harder than you know
To keep shouldering false hope
I cant carry your fears,
I’m not the one you should ask here
You pick my brain like I got something
Good to say about “what’s it mean to exist?”
But I can’t say anything
because I’m not existing yet

I never claimed to have the answers
I’ve just been searching for the good
Because at my best I’m a filthy sinner
And at my worst I’m misunderstood

I never claimed to have the answers
I have been searching for the good
because at my best I’m a wayward sinning fool
So don’t misunderstand me telling you
To not misunderstand misunderstood
Track Name: Good Enough
I wade through the empty days until you come back in sight
I count all the different ways but you still wont say it’s right
‘Cause I am all the selfish things that you'd never want me for
I sail close but you drift away ‘til your hearts ready for more
I won't go; no I'm not like them at all

All that you’ve learned from love
Is you weren’t good enough
But all that you’ve heard is wrong
You know you’re strong enough

I keep all my hurt locked up in a buried treasure chest
Any man who has had a glimpse made a mess of it and left
‘Cause I am all the selfish things that you'd never love me for
I was close now I’m far away trying to find the other shore
But don’t go, no I’m not like them at all

Don’t give up, don’t go cold, you’re close to moving on
If it don’t hurt, then it’s wrong, so let’s hurt for awhile ‘til we feel something, oh

Hearts race in the salty air as you put your feet on sand
Like a dream you’re in front of me with your treasure chest in hand
Don’t leave, I will show everything
Track Name: Afraid (Interlude)
you don’t even know how afraid I am

so save me from myself again
Track Name: Simple and Free
My path in life was chosen
In a flurry of emotion
You know the music seemed to sweep me off my feet
And I didn’t have much choice
But to follow her clear voice
To try to find the things she had in store for me

I could have been a scientist but I don’t mean to whine
It’s just that I am so much more than what you see
I could have been a million things to gain respect from kings and queens
But I chose a minstrels life
Simple and free simple and free simple and free

I don’t mind the fact these musical notes
Haunt my mind and resonate from my bones
Simple and free is what I said
Simple and free ‘til I’m dead

My path in life was chosen in a flurry of emotion
You know the spirit seemed to take me by the hand
And I didn’t have much choice but to listen for his voice
And try to help my boy as he became a man

I could have been a novelist
Unwinding worlds that don’t exist or a hundred other things I do believe
I could have written you a symphony
Become the queen of everything
But I chose a minstrels life
Simple and free simple and free simple and free

I lost myself inside these musical notes
The melody swells and takes me home
I’ve never been alone
I will always find rest
Simple and free ‘til I’m dead
Track Name: One Day Soon
I watch her breathing while she sleeps
And then a feeling buries me
I’d die to see her walk to me
To smile in disbelief
At the ground beneath her feet

She cracks a smile and shows her teeth
It’s been a year, she looks like me
I’d die to teach her how to pray
To give to God each day
To know it when I say

“You’ll never be alone
You’ll never be alone
Even when all of your innocence is gone
You’ll never be alone”

One day soon she’ll say
“Daddy, I love a boy and he loves me”
And I’ll watch her leave and then I’ll pray
And give to God that day
And hope her heart is safe

A few weeks later she’ll come home
Crying that boy had let her go
He wasn’t ready yet to be
The kind of man she needs
So I hold her close and sing, softly

“You’ll never be alone
You’ll never be alone
Even as your heart is breaking don’t lose hope
You’ll never be alone”

One day soon, she’ll walk the aisle
My little girl, my precious child
Beautiful woman, veiled and sweet
I’ll smile in disbelief
As the tears roll down my cheek
And then I’ll whisper, softly

“You’ll never be alone
You’ll never be alone
Even after God calls both your parents home
You’ll never be alone”
Track Name: Wild I Am
I’ve been walking around this town
And I’ve decided I don’t ever wanna be another face in the crowd
I’ve been talking to people I meet
Saying, “I’ve been thinking about leaving and I’m taking next to nothing with me”

And I know that public opinion says that I should settle down
But there’s something inside my heart that fights against the crowd

And it is wild
Wild I Am

I’ve been thinking of things I don’t know
And I’m not about to settle with the present if my heart wants to go
You’ve got your convictions and I’ve got mine
But if you’re trying to tame the lion in me it’ll be a waste of your time

And I know that public opinion says to be a realist
But if you tame the beast in me, then I would not exist

Cause I am wild
Wild, wild, I am

I always find it hard to ascertain
Why it is that I feel this way
When my whole life is in disarray
The future makes me feel alive
I’ve always known the romantic side
Of not knowing where I’ll sleep at night
I can’t stand when my hands are tied
My bed the ground, my roof the sky

Wild, wild, wild, I am