Self​-​Destructive Demo

by Beautiful Ground

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released October 21, 2014



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Beautiful Ground Hartford, Connecticut

Singer-songwriter James M., aka Beautiful Ground, is based in Hartford, Connecticut.

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Track Name: Paper Bag Blues (demo)
Walking into the station
Paper bag in hand
Bought a small black coffee
From the newsstand man
Shut myself in a corner stall
Hold it level till I’ve poured it all on in
Check the cap, throw the latch
And nod back with a grin

Trying to keep my eye
On the weaving text
Like a butterfly
On a TV set
Like a dancer’s gaze
In a pirouette, I can
Watch a single blade on the ceiling fan
From my double bed

But then it moves backwards
And I’m losing track of
What used to matter and now
If the board reads right
I’m headed toward the light
At a hundred miles an hour

Stepping out onto the platform
Steam hits me in the face
Getting pushed along like cattle
Hey pal, this isn’t a race
Up the stairs into the sunshine
Might as well have been shot to outer space
Said she’s gonna meet me halfway
I can’t wait

Every time I’m in the city
I want to stay for good
Shack up with a pretty girl
Like any honest man would
Then there’s this demon that I can’t evade
It takes my money and it drags me screaming back
To my white wall jail cell
And my paper bag
Track Name: Knock on Wood (demo)
Banking on the off chance
That my actions have no consequence
And lately I been pushing my luck

Crazy how we manage
To distract ourselves from all the damage
We do to each other when we want

Uh huh
Oh yeah

Saying this time
Was just a stray from the line
I'll never pay with my life
I'm only staying a night

It won't happen to me

Binge watching 'Cops'
Imagine if I was caught
I need a wake-up call
Something to scare me straight

The world's a TV screen
A technicolor dream
I hold at arm's length
And I'm praying

Praying this time
Was just a stray from the light
I won't be paying with my life
I'm only staying the night

It won't happen again
Knock on wood
Track Name: Older Guy (demo)
Getting to that age
Where it's pretty tough to gauge
Am I gonna be the sage
Older guy

Headed to the stage
Where I've really got some range
But I don't want to be that strange
Older guy

Mothers dated me once
Brothers hating my guts
And dads, don't get me started

Best friends knowing my type
Exes sold on a fight
And dads, don't get them started
C'mon, I still get carded

At the bar, at the show
Dude, we gotta go, they're lining up in rows
You take the red ale, I'll take the blonde
Under the neon, this feeling can't be wrong

Now here's a little secret I'm gonna let you in on

I'm only interested in one thing
I'm only interested in one thing
I'm only interested
And it isn't what you think

You're gorgeous, I'm hurt
Fifty years ago
We could have made this work
You looking forward, me looking back
Meet in the middle
We could split it half and half

Your mother's calling your phone
Your brother followed me home
And your dad, don't get me started

Your best friend's searching my page
Your ex is cursing my name
And your dad, don't get him started
I'm sad and, at best, brokenhearted

If you still remember me
In a couple years, we can see
But to you, I'll always be
An older guy
Track Name: Who R U (demo)
Who are you
And how fast ya coming?

Ever since I was a little boy
I told my parents 'no more listening' - bad
If you wanna go

I'll show you
The way back to home
I'll show you
Everyone is a liar
And no one wants to stay
Track Name: King of Hearts (demo)
It's been six months now
Since I've seen the sun
And I'm beginning to doubt
There ever was one

With my good friend gone
It's down to us two
How could she have left me

In this hidden cave I've grown from
A little babe to a golden
Idol towering over
And the tyrant's won
If I don't come

When you cry in your crib
Reaching out in the dark for comfort
I give and I give
When all that I need is a mother

Down on your knees
You kiss my hands
In search of a ring
In the sparkling sand

Had I known before
I would wring your neck
Slip out the door
Never seen again

This hurts me more than it hurts you
Well, you get what you ask for, don't you

Back through the snow
The moon hanging low
Bloated, grey and still
Six lights appear
Like eyes in a mirror
Coming over the hill
If I stop in my tracks
Drop my paper bag
And kneel for a moment's prayer
In the freezing rain
I can hear them say
'He came out of nowhere, man'

I came out of nowhere
And that's where I'm going
Track Name: Scenes from the War (demo)
You fall silent
Outside of the basement bar
And you walk behind me
So I have to keep stopping

It's easy to speak freely
In the ash from a nightclub fire
I lost my depth perception
Somewhere in your eyes
Granted, I had had a few
But I don't know which is right
Do I be modest
Or do I be honest

Now we sway
On the edge of the patio
In the sapphire twilight
You kind of look like you're drowning
And I'm shouting
In the calmest way possible
Just tell me what's wrong

And your eyes are wet and red
As you skim over your lines
Darling, you forget
I have not written mine
You don't want to be selfish
You couldn't if you tried
Tonight is just a flickering image
It never could survive
Track Name: Make a Little Time (demo)
On the far end
Of the garden
In the darkness
There's a park bench

Where you wait for a ring
You know will never come
I think that's cruel

And all of this time
You set yourself apart
Like a wounded dove
Away from the sun

And you wait for a ring
You know will never come
And I think that's cruel
To you


Make a little time for me now
It's okay if you'd rather be somewhere else
If you made a little time
Make a little time for me now

I can't wait
Track Name: Braincheck (demo)
No more
Drinking to get drunk
Thinking I'm unloved
While sinking to the rug
Lip-syncing themes from sitcom reruns

No more
Staying up all night
Bathed in milky light
Caught speeding toward the finish line
I've seen this one a million times

It isn't what I want
It isn't what I want

No more
Fast-food after work
Plate on my chest, peeled off my shirt
I cashed my check for what it's worth
I ask to get what I deserve
And no more

Sneaking to the woods
Like Christmas morning in the hood
I wrote my songs with murky longing
Then I understood somehow

This isn't what I want
This isn't what I want
It isn't what it isn't
What I want is what I want

So tell me
How do I go give it up
Without giving up
How do I go give it up
Without giving up
Track Name: My Old Man
Saw it coming
A million miles away
But I held my tongue and
I let him take the blame

He's saying
You oughta let this go
If you know what's good
It could be better though
That's understood

Borrowed comfort
To minimize the pain
When offered something
I let it change my brain

I gotta let it go
If I know what's good
It could be better though
And it should

I understand
That I can't make it on my own
Would you hold my hand
The sun is setting out
On my old man

He showed me all of the ropes
But that's over now
He told me all of his jokes
But I'm older now
He drove me out of my hole
But I'm bolder now
I owe him all that I own
But I sold him out
Track Name: Brother Bull (demo)
Shot the dog when he come
I didn't mean him pain
No, I don't anyone
The headlines say
It's not my fault
Then who's at fault

There's a landscape in the sun and I
Have seen it only once so why
Do I keep tracing it half the time
With my good eye for you
Track Name: Crystal Caves (demo)
Watched you catch a wave
To the crystal cave
There, standing in the sand
I think I knew

To my family and my friends
I leave a key
A couple dollars, my ID
And the phone that never rings
It rang this morning
Now I see where I am going
Through the camera in my mind
Like the long neck of a bottle
Take me back, help me find

My perfect moment

Here's a picture of a boy
Who saw heaven in the light
He holds a rock as flat as Florida
Hopes to touch the other side
But he lets go, he heads home
The sun ducks out, it gets cold
And as he grows, he grows alone
So it won't be stolen from him

The perfect moment is gone

Make a left turn at the stop sign
Pass the billboard on your right
See a blue house on the corner
Second story, where am I
Meet the angel on the hillside
Hold your breath, look in her eyes
Underneath the bridge in Old Town
She can only save your life

Watched you catch a wave
To a better place
Here, standing on the shore
I think I knew before
That I would never see you again
Track Name: Joke's Over (demo)
Bad experiments
Had a theory once
Fact-checked for fallacies
The Aztecs never waited
They had their cake and ate it

Then wasted away from here
But where'd those people go
They say we're not supposed to know
Okay, joke's over
Where'd those people go
Lord, tell me where'd my people go

Made it out to see her again
Parked in front of the CVS
Took some pictures for the hell of it
Didn't get much of anything
Humming 'One Little Indian' to me
Track Name: She Don't Call (demo)
Kicked the borderland
Split a quarter gram
On our tongues
Broke the dam
Let the flood in our blood
Carry us on

Good experiments
Took her little hand
And down the hall
Heard the band
Get their tuning right

While the madman hung a
Hellish painting
On the wall right opposite
The window
He called it, 'All that will Remain'

I need her to tell me
It's fine
But she don't call
And I cut out the light

This magic act and that
Attractive to me anymore
Another screen we wedge between
Us and the real thing we adore
Don't I project enough
Doth I protest, you think too much
The next subjective medium
Ain't feeding us, it's eating us

I'm serious
The theory was
We needed much
Track Name: Evergreens (demo)
I've got a heart to give
And no real motive

Been sleeping in the evergreens
So I fear nothing

We take the scenic route
Down Walnut Beach
Three paces behind you
You follow me

I'm sleeping in the evergreens
Quit thinking of a place I'd been
In a dream once

I've got a heart
And it's gone cold
I should've thought it out
Before I spoke
But I was trying hard for you
Would you

Deny me of a soul
Don't deny me of a soul
Don''t deny me of my soul
Don't deny, don't deny

There are feelings we can't place
Till they've seen the light of day
Is it me who's in the way
Or is it you, don't deny

There are things bigger than us
Silver rings collecting dust
Someone's killer on the bus
Don't deny, don't deny me, he says
Don't deny

You're screaming from the mezzanine
Tears streaming while you beg for me
Come to me
I'm sleeping in the evergreens
Still thinking of a face I'd seen
In a dream

I've got a heart to give
And no reason to
Track Name: So Far (demo)
Short sleeve shirts
As unrehearsed
Performance art

I'll name the song I'm working on
For the summer sun
We've come so far

It wasn't easy
To tell you the truth
Not what you want to hear
My feet were freezing
But I warmed up to you