'Simple Things' Liner Notes

As far back as I can remember paintings have always had the ability to inspire my creative juices. Whenever my eyes came upon a painting my imagination would flood with story lines within each brush stroke. It wasn’t a practice as much as a reflex action. Long before I starting writing, these fictional creations ran rampant through my day. I didn’t have to visit a museum or an exhibit, the location was of no importance, it was the flow of creativity that captured my spirit.  

So now many years later I’ve taken to corral some of that energy into a conceptual album inspired by the paintings of Thomas Eakins. What started out as a simple trip to the Philadelphia Museum of Art quickly turned into a two year project that birthed the ‘Simple Things’ album.  

The original compositions were written over a four week holiday in Melbourne Beach, Florida in February of 2015. I kept the titles intact and dove deep into the life of the artist while listening to the music of the period. The writing was quick and loose which left lots of room for developing at a later date. The first drafts were demo’d and left to mature over a two year period before the actual recording sessions started in January of 2017. 

My original vision was one of a much more dated sound musically, but that changed slowly as the tracks were being laid down. One by one, song after song, there was a musical personality, a musical footprint that was beginning to take form, and though the finished versions are much different then I had imagined, they still retain a heartbeat that was inspired by someone else more than a century ago. 

I invite you to have the paintings before your eyes as you listen to each track. I encourage you to let you mind wander in and around the rhythms, the lyric, the melody and harmony, to imagine you’re own continuing storyline. 

It’s my hope that we can teach a new generation to love and appreciate the arts in new and creative ways while preserving and passing down our varying cultures. 


Dedicated to the creative gift of Thomas Eakins. 

"In mathematics the complicated things are reduced to simple things, so it is in painting.” ~ Thomas Eakins


 I've got a six-string strapped to my back 
One my daddy passed down to me 
Loaded with songs and always in tune 
Ready whenever it need be 
Oh my fingers are poised at the ready 
Never more then a downbeat away 
Finding their way on a rosewood neck 
Dancing ‘round the harmony 

Home on the range
Where I lay my head down 
Where my darling
Nestles next to me 
Where seldom is heard
A discouraging word 
Where a cowboy sings of destiny 

I've got a foot that knows
Nothing but stompin' 
Keeping it steady ‘till coda’s end 
Holding the tempo with metronome time 
Kissing wood and the backbeat’s friend 

When the cowboy sings 
When the cowboy sings it's all good

© 2015 Eddy Mann
 Hissongs ~ ASCAP


Long, long ago it graced her soft frame 
In a cafe, with no name 
Deep in fragrant passion, silently speaking 
Hung so lightly, quietly seeking 
Love so very, very small 
Born on that night 
The night of the red shawl 
Draped so poignantly, an eloquent whisper 
Angel fair; catch the blur 
Never in my life did I know such a wonder 
Long for sight, short to sunder 
Love so very, very small 
Born on that night 
The night of the red shawl 

Deep, inside it lingers, etched on my heart 
Soul gallery, breath of art 
Memories remain
from that sweet single eve 
Mindfully there, on my sleeve 
Love so very, very small 
Born on that night 
The night of the red shawl 

© 2015 Eddy Mann
Hissongs ~ ASCAP


We went riding one smart morning in May 
Privilege followed us throughout the day 
Past the fountains and the trees 
By the flowers through the breeze 
We went riding one smart morning in May 

We unoticingly passed rabble with less 
There were countless
Opportunities to bless 
But our sight was colored rose 
Which overshadowed these and those 
We unoticingly passed rabble with less 

It's just a May morning in the park 
Another morning in the park 
It's just a May morning in the park
...or maybe more 

We were blinded
By the blessings we incurred 
Redundantly we walked with lines blurred 
Unaware of our surroundings 
Deaf to the houndings 
We were blinded
By the blessings we incurred 

We arrived one May morning in the park 
Awakened as light overcame the dark 
With hearts that were seeing 
With words that were freeing 
We arrived one May morning in the park

© 2015 Eddy Mann 
Hissongs ~ ASCAP