Gotta Try A Little Harder: The Ofrenda Demos

by Frank Cruz and the New Deal

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  • Cassette + Digital Album

    High-bias, aqua blue cassette tape manufactured by Analogue Media Technologies in Montreal, Canada. Liner notes include a personal essay by Frank Cruz. Only 100 copies available. Includes digital download.

    Includes unlimited streaming of Gotta Try A Little Harder: The Ofrenda Demos via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
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1.
5400 VALENTINE ROAD Let’s drive too fast down streets we both know too well Let’s tell ourselves that nothing ever dies, that we’ll always be the same Let’s pick out names (I know, we barely know each others’ names But let’s dream of ever after) Let’s open up! and show each other all the shit we hide so well from everyone else Cause I don’t know if I could ever tell anyone, admit that I’m afraid Let’s pick out names (I know we barely know each others’ names But still I wanna lie in fields of flame with you) Cause I know that I’m already changing I know that I’m already changing I knew from the first moment I saw you That everything had changed Let’s drive too fast down streets that only ever seem to lead to our son’s grave words & music by Frank Cruz Frank Cruz - vocals, acoustic guitar, shaker, and tambourine Recorded in the basement at Rand Avenue Mixed by Scott Goodrich at Nu-Tone Studios, Pittsburg, CA
2.
NO NAME WALTZ I'm gonna sleep beneath the stars tonight And wonder where you are Cause every time I hear the freight train cry I say, "I love you, too" It don't feel much like a conversation anymore But I guess it has to do I guess you can’t change the past Sometimes I forget that, I think I gotta go back To the way that we were before we heard the words Those awful words I'm gonna crash into the waves today Get swallowed by the sea And if the ocean spits me out again I catch my breath, breathe out and in I feel so much smaller but in the end The problems are just the same I guess you can’t change the past Sometimes I forget that, I try so hard to go back To the way that we were before we heard the words Those awful words I’m gonna drink till I don't feel no more Make love until I'm tired Cause there's no such thing as moving on There's only getting by So I can't blame you For wanting me to try words & music by Frank Cruz Frank Cruz - vocals and acoustic guitar Recorded in the basement at Rand Avenue Mixed by Scott Goodrich at Nu-Tone Studios, Pittsburg, CA
3.
JEREMY DREAMS OF TIME MACHINES (for Barbara and Jeremy) It was forty days and forty nights I was wandering through the desert alone This ain’t no fairy tale, I never heard the voice of god But I’m not complaining cause I found my way home But I was empty and I was restless Didn’t know just where I belonged Familiar things didn’t seem the same With you gone And I know I just got back And so I hate to say, so long But I gotta go back on the road Find the place that we went wrong It rained for forty days, it poured for forty nights I thought the desert heat was bad but it’s got nothing on the cold I saw the river rise, I met a whale, got ate alive But by the time he spit me out I guess I missed that old rainbow Cause I was empty and I was restless Didn’t know just where I belonged All the good things didn’t feel so good With you gone And I know I been making excuses now For way, way, way too long Could you forgive me If I never come home? Bridge: Cause Jeremy dreams of time machines (And baseball cards, and space wars, and his best friend’s eyes) Jeremy dreams of time machines (And race cars, computer games, and deep blue skies) But me, I never dream, and if I do I see earthquakes, and endless wars, and open graves, I don’t see you So let’s just let him sleep, I know just what he means He’s just trying to find a way to turn back time words & music by Frank Cruz Frank Cruz - vocals, acoustic guitar, and glockenspiel Khalil Sullivan - harmonium Recorded in the basement at Rand Avenue Mixed by Scott Goodrich at Nu-Tone Studios, Pittsburg, CA
4.
BALLAD FOR A FRIEND Sad I’m a-sittin’ on the railroad track Watchin’ that old smokestack Train is a-leavin’ but it won’t be back Years ago we hung around Watchin’ trains roll through the town Now that train is a-graveyard bound Where we go up in that North Country Lakes and streams and mines so free I had no better friend than he Something happened to him that day I thought I heard a stranger say I hung my head and stole away A diesel truck was rollin’ slow Pullin’ down a heavy load It left him on a Utah road They carried him back to his home town His mother cried, his sister moaned Listenin’ to them church bells tone words & music by Bob Dylan Frank Cruz - vocals and acoustic guitar Recorded and mixed in the basement at Rand Avenue
5.
THIS IS JUST TO SAY Your baby brother’s getting bigger Man, he’s growing like a weed He’s asking questions I cannot answer So I just tell him how we used to be And your momma’s getting older But she’s aging gracefully Talking about another baby Finding reasons to believe And me, I’m writing you this letter Between faith and misery Man, I get lonesome here without you Between what is and what ought to be And me, I'm writing you this letter Man, I been looking for some peace Just can't stop myself from thinking This isn't how we were supposed to be words by Frank Cruz music by Frank Cruz and Chris Dixon Frank Cruz - vocals, keyboards, glockenspiel, drums Chris Dixon - electric guitars Recorded by Chris Dixon and Frank Cruz at The Lab in Oakland, CA Mixed by Scott Goodrich at Nu-Tone Studios in Pittsburg, CA
6.
AN ATLAS OF THE DIFFICULT WORLD Took a plane ride to London Hopped a train to Italy Caught a speed boat and sailed off to sea I saw the temples of Athens The lights of Paris Saw some sunsets you would not believe I ordered whiskey and water I drank tonic and gin In every town, behind the bar, I found a friend I stayed up till the morning Made my days into nights Anything that was wrong the maid made all right I tried to burn myself out Like a moth to the flame But every wonder I saw said your name So I guess I’ll stop running Try to stay in one place I’ll probably never stop seeing your face I said, there’s no use in running Besides where would I go? So I’m learning to live with your ghost words & music by Frank Cruz Frank Cruz - vocals, keyboard Chris Dixon - bass, electric guitars Recorded by Chris Dixon at the Lab in Oakland, CA Mixed by Scott Goodrich at Nu-Tone Studios in Pittsburg, CA
7.
8.
HEREAFTER I gotta try a little harder And get myself together “Be thankful for things I have” Cause is it here, hereafter I can put it back together? I’ll finally get the answer I waited for so long We gotta try a little harder Do your best to remember A time we didn’t always have to try so goddamned hard Is it here, hereafter We can put it back together? We’ll finally see our sunshine We’ll forget it ever rained Till then I try to remember to breathe I block out the evidence this don’t mean a thing Cause I know I can’t pretend it’s any worse for me Sick of waiting for Jesus to speak to me I gotta try a little harder And get myself together “Be thankful for things I have” words & music by Frank Cruz Produced by La Practica De Familia at home in Oakland, CA Sequencing and MIDI programming by La Practica De Familia Mixed by Scott Goodrich at Nu-Tone Studios in Pittsburg, CA
9.
10.
THIS IS JUST TO SAY Your baby brother’s not a baby anymore Man, he’s growing like a weed He’s asking questions I can’t answer So I just tell him how we used to be And your momma’s getting older But she’s aging gracefully She’s talking about another baby She’s finding reasons to believe And me, I’m writing you this letter Between faith and misery Man, I get lonesome here without you Between what is and what ought to be And me, I’m trying hard to get myself together I been praying for peace To some god I don’t believe in anyways But desperate men do desperate things And now the bottle’s almost empty So I guess I’ll get to sleep But right before I close my eyes I see you suddenly alive I linger in-between to watch the way we used to be words by Frank Cruz music by Frank Cruz and Chris Dixon Produced, recorded, and performed by Hulk Hogan Sex Tape at home and the Lab in Oakland, CA Mixed by Scott Goodrich at Nu-Tone Studios in Pittsburg, CA

about

Outtakes, demos, alternate arrangements, and acoustic versions of material from "Ofrenda." This companion album features a remix by La Practica De Familia and a cover song by Hulk Hogan Sex Tape.

credits

released November 1, 2014

Written and performed by Frank Cruz and Chris Dixon with La Practica De Familia, Hulk Hogan Sex Tape, and Khalil Sullivan

Recorded by Frank and Chris in the basement at Rand Avenue and at the Lab in Oakland, CA

Mixed and mastered by Scott Goodrich at Nu-Tone Studios in Pittsburg, CA

J-card photos by Kim Keever (front) and Chris Dixon (back). Used by permission.

OFRENDA is available on Día de los Muertos 2014 in vinyl and digital formats

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Frank Cruz and the New Deal Oakland, California

Frank Cruz & the New Deal are Frank, Chris, Wes, and Ari. An indie folk rock band from Oakland, CA.

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