The Bells on the Boats on the Bay

by Gentle Hen

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about

The Bells on the Boats on the Bay. They’re out there ringing in the dark, even if the only one around is a cat scavenging on the docks. Similarly, Gentle Hen is making music, even if the only one around is a cat scavenging on the docks. It’s just what they do. Henning Ohlenbusch has been writing songs for this particular band to play since 2001 and he doesn’t see any reason to stop. The band is five guys. Brian Marchese, Max Gemer, Ken Maiuri, Tony Westcott, and Ohlenbusch.

It took forever to make this album. In an effort to mix things up after they changed their band name from School for the Dead to Gentle Hen, they decided to record these songs off-site. They made day trips into the dark forests of New Hampshire to work with Frank Padellero. The trips turned to once a month and then once every few months. Then, other life-things got in the way. Mixing took a few years of back and forth. Artwork lingered in half-finished purgatory. Everyone had everything else to do. Days got shorter and shorter. Weeks became moments.

But the songs are classics. The moments captured are magical. They’ve just been waiting, patiently, to be heard. Well, not patiently. They are eager and busting and clamoring to be heard.

They are simple and intricate and smooth and gritty and all-over-the-place and played with passion and energy and sung with heart. There are cool sounds all over them. Organs and pianos and tubular-bells. Different guitars and amps and unimaginable percussive objects. There was a whole lot of creativity secretly happening out there in the woods while snowstorms came and went and black bears snooped around the windows.

credits

released May 6, 2016

Gentle Hen is:

Henning Ohlenbusch
Brian Marchese
Max Germer
Anthony Westcott
Ken Maiuri

Recorded, produced, by Frank Padellaro and Henning Ohlenbusch
Mixed by Frank Padellaro
Mastered by TW Walsh


All songs © 2015 Henning Ohlenbusch
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Gentle Hen Northampton, Massachusetts

Formerly named School for the Dead.

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Track Name: I Don't Know About Anyone Else But
I Don’t Know About Anyone Else But

You’re alright. We’ll hit it off
I can tell. From the start.

I’m alright. Just help me up.
I lost my step. But I’m getting it back.

I don’t know what events might occur that will change our lives
I don’t know what crazy situations might present themselves

It’s almost time to take a stand
To take a breath and to say what you planned

I don’t know what events might unfold that will change our lives
I don’t know what crazy situations might present themselves
I don’t know about anyone else
I don’t know about anyone else
I don’t know about any of you
I don’t know about anyone here
But I’m in luck, luck, luck, luck, luck
I can’t be hurt, hurt, hurt, hurt, hurt
I’ve got it made, made, made, made, made
Got more than I deserve.

Let’s back up just a few steps
So you can rethink what you just said

I don’t know what events might unfold that will change our lives
I don’t know what nutty situations might present themselves
I don’t know about anyone else
I don’t know about anyone else
I don’t know about any of you
I don’t know about anyone here
But I’m in luck, luck, luck, luck, luck
I can’t be hurt, hurt, hurt, hurt, hurt
I’ve got it made, made, made, made, made
Got more than I deserve,
Yeah I’m in luck, luck, luck, luck, luck
I can’t be hurt, hurt, hurt, hurt, hurt
I’ve got it made, made, made, made, made.
Got more than I deserve.
Track Name: Jake and Kim Broke Up (Leave Me Out of It)
“Slow down.” he said.
“Slow down, my friend.”
“Step back and think things through.”

“It’s sad.” he said,
“But you’ve been mislead.”
“Told things that were not true.”

What do I do?
Who do I trust?
I trust no one, I guess.

“Step back” she said.
“Step back, my friend.”
“Sit down and listen to me.”

“It’s sad” she said.
“But you’ve been mislead.”
“You know how Jake can be.”

What do I do?
Who do I trust?
I trust no one, I guess.

I don’t want to get involved.
Don’t call me ‘til it’s resolved.
I don’t want to lose a friend,
Or two.

“Oooo my friends. I won’t pick sides.”
“You’re on your own this time.”
Life’s too short for this stupid stuff.
Life’s too short for this.
Life’s too short for this stupid stuff.
Life’s too short for this.
Track Name: I Wasn't Looking for This
I Wasn’t Looking For This
I Wasn’t Looking For This
Thought I put it so clearly where I was coming from
But you didn’t hear me I guess

I Wasn’t Looking For This
I Wasn’t Looking For This
Thought I put it so clearly where I was coming from
But you didn’t hear me I guess

Are you too cute for me to leave?
I hate the way you clutch my sleeve when we’re walking.

I Wasn’t Looking For This
I Wasn’t Ready For This
But it’s so convenient, I don’t have to do a thing
And I’ve always been lazy at best

It’s nice to have someone around
I hate to let anybody down so I’m quiet but
I Wasn’t Looking For This


There’s a knock on the door
There’s a squeak of the door
And the sun shines down on your brand new dyed hair
And you smile
So I smile
And we smile for a while.


Thought I put it so clearly where I was coming from
But you didn’t hear me I guess
But you couldn’t hear me I guess
But you wouldn’t hear me I guess
Track Name: Somebody Else's Problem
Imagine your life if we had never met
All the things that you wouldn’t be trying to forget
I suspect you wish that I was somebody else’s problem

Are you tearin’ me stooly because I always mishear?
So it’s Terry meets Julie, babe, the same sun sets here
And you gaze past me.
Like I’m somebody else’s problem.
Somebody else’s problem.
Somebody else’s problem.

I’ll never be as good as that.
You’ll never find this thing that you think that you should have.

So, I’m sick again and I’ve ruined our plans.
You’re making me soup and you spill some on your hands.
Oh man, you wish that I was somebody else’s problem.
Somebody else’s problem.
Somebody else’s problem.

I’ll never be as good as that.
You’ll never find this thing that you think that you should have.

Life was easier when you were on your own.
I pull my hand back and make faces down the phone.
How can you say these things that you say like you believe them?
Life wasn’t easier when you were on your own.

I’m the guy in the movie who fades out of sight
Right after the lady runs into to Mr. Right.
Am I wrong? I’m right.
I’ll be somebody else’s problem.
Somebody else’s problem.
Somebody else’s problem.
Track Name: Waiting For Life
I didn’t have much to do, so I went out walking.
I was wearing my favorite shoes, I got them for my birthday
I don’t have to hurry, I don’t have to worry about time
I don’t have to hurry, I don’t have to worry
Because I don’t have anything to do tonight

Some people have started life, hope they know what they’re doing
Other people are chasing life, hope they know what they’re pursuing
I’m just waiting, I’m just waiting for life
I’m just waiting, I’m just waiting
In the meantime I guess I’ll do what I do best
I’ll act life-like so people will think I’m real
Is this what life’s like? Is this how people feel? I don’t believe it.

If I was a Neanderthal, I’d spend my days hunting
I know a few know-it-alls, they spend their days sleeping
They’re just waiting, we’re just waiting for life
I’m just waiting, I’m just waiting
In the meantime I guess I’ll do what I do best
I’ll act life-like so people will think I’m real
Is this what life’s like? Is this how people feel?
(Yes) I don’t believe it.
(Yes) Oh no, no, no, no
(Yes) I don’t believe it. (It’s true) Oh well.

I don’t know how to tell you, Boss, this ain’t where it’s at.
I don’t want to do what I don’t want to do for life.

I’ve got a few secrets to keep. There are things I haven’t told her.
And I don’t want to go to sleep. Because you only wake up older.
I’m just waiting, I’m just waiting for life
I’m just waiting, I’m just waiting
In the meantime I guess I’ll do what I do best
I’ll act life-like so people will think I’m real
Is this what life’s like? Is this how people feel?
(Yes) I don’t believe it. (Yes) Oh no, no, no, no
(Yes) I don’t believe it. (It’s true) What?!
(Yes) I don’t believe it. (Yes) Oh no, no, no, no
(Yes) I don’t believe it. (It’s true) Oh well.
Track Name: Saving Your Life
Saving your life is going to be real interesting
When you keep calling me up to tell me I’m not listening
What can I say to you
That nobody’s already said?
Saving your life is going to be real interesting

I’ve got a question that’s probably not answerable
How can someone so cute be so miserable?
I know, I know. It’s the stupidest thing to ask
But saving your life is going to be real interesting

Don’t get mad. This isn’t how I wanted it to go, you know.
Don’t get mad. I don’t have time to listen to you when you’re yelling.
Don’t get mad. Or saving your life is going get real difficult.

Saving your life.
Saving your life.

Your escape plan is through friendly biology
But I’m worn out from accepting apologies.
What can I do for you
That nobody’s already done?
Saving your life is going to be real interesting

Don’t get mad. This isn’t how I wanted it to go, you know.
Don’t get mad. I don’t have time to listen to you when you’re yelling.
Don’t get mad. Or saving your life is going get real difficult.

Saving your life.
Saving your life.
Saving your life.
It’s no longer my responsibility.
Saving your life.
I don’t have to make excuses anymore.
Saving your life.
I don’t have to explain the things you do.
Track Name: The Wrongway Out of Town
Yeah, I’m still here and I still look about the same
But you disappeared though I sometimes say your name
I’m still dressed in black and my apartment’s just out back
No, no, no, it’s just me. There’s no brand new circle of friends.

I took the wrong way out of town
I took the wrong way out of town

At night it’s so still when I walk back to my place
And inside it’s so still and I can’t stand to see my face
In the mirror by the door, that you don’t walk through anymore
There’s a view from my bed of everything I’ll never have

I took the wrong way out of town
I took the wrong way out of town.

Time after time, with accurate precision
Given a set of options I will make the wrong decision
You used to point for me but now I’m scared to move
Because I always go the wrong way

This rug is worn out from all the people walking in and out
Of my life in this town, it was better when you were around
And someday you’ll come back and you’ll see that I haven’t changed
And you’ll feel like you’re home when you hear me say your name

I took the wrong way out of town
I took the wrong way out of town
I took the wrong way out of town
I took the wrong way out of town
Track Name: She Does, She Does
I was looking at her teeth while he was tapping me on the shoulder
He said “Are you listening to me?”
I said “Nobody know me better than she does.”

He shook his head and he rolled his eyes.
“You’ve been day-dreaming again, do you realize?”
I shook head, I rolled eyes.
“No this has got to be the day-dream!” I replied.
“Because nobody know me better than she does.”

And she does.
What she does is she tells me that she misses me
She leans over and kisses me
Good bye
And I remind her
That nobody knows her better than I.

She turns her head and she looks back at me.
“The reception is lousy.” She turns back to the T.V.
I look up something isn’t right.
Snowflakes are streaming into my headlights
Nobody knows me better than she does.

And she does.
What she does is she tells me that she misses me
She leans over and kisses me
Good bye
And I remind her
That nobody knows her better than I.
That nobody knows her better than I.
That nobody knows her better than I.
Track Name: The People You See Regularly Never Grow Old
It’s strange to see you in this place out of place.
I’m looking for you underneath that grown-up face.
I wouldn’t have recognized you if I hadn’t been told.
You see, the people you see regularly never grown old.
The people you hang out with, well, they never grow old.

I went to look for you in our home town.
Checked all the secret spots but you were not around.
Went to your parents’ house, it had long since been sold.
The people you see regularly never grown old.
The people you hang out with, well, they never grow old.

Was that? It had to be. You’re face in black and white,
Staring at me hauntingly from the newspaper last night.
You look so good and strange, just beneath the fold.
The people you see regularly never grown old.
The people you hang out with, well, they never grow old.

You look the same as you did when we first met. So many years ago by now
You cannot see the hour hand has moved until you look away.
Do I look the way I did when we met? I know that I have changed a lot.
But when you look at me, which me do you see?

You walk into the place just like you always do.
I’d barely know the place if it weren’t for you.
You’re famous sweater with its stripes of green and gold
The people you see regularly never grown old.
The people you hang out with, well, they never grow old.

You look exactly the same as you did when we first met
I remember all our friend couldn’t believe we hadn’t met yet
We stayed outside and talked so long despite the cold
The people you see regularly never grown old.
The people you hang out with, well, they never grow old.

You look the same as you did when we met. So many years ago by now.
You cannot see the hour hand has moved until you look away.
Do I look the way I did when we met? I know that I have changed a lot.
But when you look at me, which me do you see?
Track Name: Levitation
In the presence of a few, I exhibited a power
That no one had ever seen before

On a secluded moonlit dune, I arose above the sand
And hovered there for a while

I was frightened. I was scared.
My friends were silent as they stared.

As I floated in the air, I could not feel the wind
Though the bells on the boats on the bay were banging in the breeze

I wasn’t frightened. I wasn’t scared.
I’d forgotten my friends were there
Until I came down

Later on, all that night, I could not sleep at all
Thought I heard voices from the other tents.


What would happen the next day?
What would all of my friends say?
I got up and waited by the fire.

I was frightened. I was scared.
Until my friends each appeared
One by one, into the sun.

And they sat me down and smiled
And we talked a little while
And I heard each say that it would be OK. Okay.

As years pass, memories change. Perhaps they all forgot
Or wrote off as a dream

But sometimes on a humid night, I will go out for a walk
And find places that no one else will be

When I’m certain
No one’s around, I will lift off from the ground.