Gotta Try A Little Harder: The Ofrenda Demos

by Frank Cruz and the New Deal

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  • Cassette

    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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  • Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.

     $8 USD  or more

     

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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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about

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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Track Name: 5400 Valentine Road (Acoustic Demo)
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
Track Name: No Name Waltz (Acoustic Demo)
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
Track Name: Jeremy Dreams of Time Machines (Band Demo)
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
Track Name: Ballad for a Friend (Acoustic Demo)
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
Track Name: This Is Just to Say (Band Demo)
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
Track Name: An Atlas of the Difficult World (Band Demo)
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
Track Name: Hereafter (La Practica De Familia Remix)
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
Track Name: Hulk Hogan Sex Tape - This Is Just to Say (Hulk Hogan Sex Tape Cover)
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