The Best of the Rest, Version 6

by The Nowhere Man

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1.
This has gone on far too long You offer nothing good to me You don't deserve another song You offer nothing good to me This has gone on far too long You don't deserve another song
2.
Say a word for my hateful past I was bitter, angry, and lonely Could you pause to forgive me? Nothing I said was really poetic There it is: memory for sale All my writing: my feelings exposed Like some song you know you can't forget Even if my words tend to fail me I still have this strange, strange feeling "I am living out the life of a poet" Say a word for what's no more The people, the places, all that is past But in the back of your mind You know you won't forget – it's all there Call it boredom, call it what you will I know when you sleep what goes in your head It's always just another minute somewhere else You know, I've heard every word you've said Even when you thought I couldn't hear Let me tell you: I know something's up
3.
Spät in der Nacht Vielleicht ist es Zeit, ins Bett zu gehen Endlich fertig oder vielleicht nicht Immer noch etwas mehr zu tun Ich schau' aus dem Fenster: nichts zu sehen Kaltes Nachtluft, keine Autos Die Straßenlicht tickt, es haltet nicht Ich kann es von hier immer hören Ich dreh' mich um – zu spät zu essen Wenig Zeit zu schlafen Trink mein' Tee aus, vielleicht mehr machen Wie ist es morgen? Was muß ich tun? Ich muß immer so früh aufstehen Diese Tage werden mich töten Und ich kann nichts darüber tun Nur ins Bett fallen und kurz schlafen Neuer Tag – steh schnell auf Mit nur wenigen Minuten Brauch ich mehr Schlaf Oder bin ich erschöpft? Wie könnte man leben Mit wenig Schlaf, zu viel Arbeit und Streß Tage, die zu kurz sind Wie findet man einen Gleichgewicht? Translation: Late at night Perhaps it's time to go to bed Finally finished or maybe not Always something more to do I look out the window: nothing in sight Cold night air, no cars The streetlight ticks, it doesn't stop I can always hear it from here I turn around – too late to eat Little time to sleep Drink up my tea, perhaps make more How is it tomorrow? What must I do? I have to always get up so early These days will kill me And I can't do anything about it Just fall in bed and briefly sleep New day – get up fast With just a few minutes Do I need more sleep Or am I exhausted? How can one live With little sleep, too much work and stress Days that are too short How does one find a balance?
4.
I saw a man in the park, his face bloated with anger, red His arm raised the end of it a fist aimed at the child at his knees I want something to eat but he had nothing to give, no money The fist braced to explode like a bullet and the little girl screamed I read this article – a Muslim girl, a Bosnian, just fifteen Dragged from her bed, taken to a camp, surrounded by so many men Who threatened to rape her and break her, who hit her and beat her till she screamed A teenage boy passing by heard her and said to leave her alone What does it all mean? We cannot abide by the violence we do to another We must shout and scream until it stops, and at the same time we must think of the More profound job ahead - to change the conditions of life that drive us to violence Men against women, and indeed all violence against another I heard a strange sound from inside of me, like cracking ice in the spring I saw what I'd seen so many times, many times in nightmares But now for the first time I saw it to the bitter, painful end I can hear my soul cracking somewhere deep inside of me Far easier to blame the victims than to share their helplessness We do this without knowing it – every day in every land And so the blame-shifting continues until we really make a change Nothing to hate now but violence itself and the men out of control These aren't stories, this is real life; don't ignore it and just look away Sometimes I get overwhelmed and I lay here feeling rather powerless Why isn't the world in an uproar when these things are happening everywhere? In my life I have seen enough, I can't let this go on anymore
5.
Wegen dieser Klasse habe ich dieses Lied geschrieben Zwecks eurer Unterhaltung spiele ich diese Gitarre Obgleich ich schlecht singe, zumal ich aus der Übung bin Nichtsdestotrotz bin ich hier, deshalb spiele ich jetzt Sonst müsste ich schauspielern, obwohl ich das nicht kann Anstattdessen habe ich dieses für euch geschrieben Obschon ich Deutsch seit acht Jahren gelernt habe Finde ich, dass ich noch viele Fehler mache Je mehr ich lerne, desto komplizierter wird alles Mangels Beherrschung der deutschen Grammatik Manche ich diese Fehler immer noch Es sei denn, ich komme hierher und studiere Deutsch Trotz meiner Schwierigkeiten habe ich die Hälfte schon geschafft Damit dieses Lied nicht zu langweilig wird, kommt gleich die Bridge Entsprechend den Regeln der Popmusik ist sie kurz Und falls sie euch nicht gefallt, ist sie bald vorbei Nach meiner Meinung habe ich schon genug gesungen (Aber) gemäß meiner Aufgabe muss ich noch ein bißchen mehr sagen Jetzt sind wir hier aufgrund eines Schauspiels Infolgedessen muss ich die Schauspieler vorstellen Zuerst kommen Brittany, John, und Santiago Nach einer Pause kommen Emma, Erik, und Markus Diese Geschichte ist alt – ein Liebesdreieck Und ihr werdet zwei Versionen zuschauen Translation: Because of this class I wrote this song For the purpose of your entertainment I'm playing this guitar Although I can't sing well, especially since I'm out of practice Nonetheless I'm here, therefore I'm playing now Otherwise I'd have to act, although I'm not capable of it Instead of that I wrote this for you Although I have learned German for eight years I find that I still make many mistakes The more I learn, the more complicated it all seems Due to insufficient mastery of German grammar I will keep making these errors forever Unless I come here and study German In spite of my difficulties I'm already halfway done So that this song doesn't get too boring, here's the bridge: According to the rules of pop music it's short And in case you don't like it, it's over soon In my opinion, I've already sung enough But in accordance with my assignment I must say a bit more We've come here now due to a play Consequently I must introduce the actors First will come Brittany, John, and Santiago After a pause will come Emma, Erik, and Markus This story is old – a love triangle And you will see two versions thereof
6.
I won't be your man, that's not what I am Don't call me your man, that ain't who I am If you think that's what I am Let me tell you, you've got it all wrong I won't play that game, I won't do it that way I don't play the game, I think the rules are insane If you think that's why I'm here Let me tell you, I won't be taking part Don't call me your baby Can't you see that's quite an insult? And I'll make the same promise I think we'll both be better for it I'm not going to sing about the way you talk I'm not going to write about the way you walk If you really want to hear 'bout that I think we both know that's been written before If you want to hear about that shit Go turn on the radio If that's all you want to hear I think you'd better go find someone else
7.
Quarter Past 03:00
If you ask me yes or no I'll say maybe Or I'll sit in silence and pretend to think Lost in thought you'll be lucky if I answer Lost somewhere in the distance, future or the past I'll say maybe Pretend to think Lucky if I answer Future or the past Try to transcend space and time leads to nowhere Forwards up and down have lost their meaning Forgotten in the underbelly of a satisfied evening Complaining yelling shouting underneath the bus stop Leads to nowhere Lost their meaning Emptied-out evening Underneath the bus stop Water dripping I am hungry you think now Time is lost and I don't care today tomorrow Lucky we can see the place to be unknown Space unfolds and yet I don't know destination No more thought Yesterday tomorrow It's all unknown Final destination Up and down and all around and I've been here before Somewhere in the back of my crumpled mind space Wandering, wondering, looking for a place to go A face, a name, a something else to look forward to Nice to be back Same old problem Don't fall in the ditch What's on the horizon Lost and found and lost again it's nothing new at all Talking stalking mocking to the sound of a drumbeat Spinning down the sidewalk oh and high on chocolate Don't forget your dreams go circle 'round the hemisphere I've been here before Music in my head Try to hold back Don't forget your dreams
8.
What is the answer? What is the point? Where are we going? What is the meaning? We've got the answers We know what's to come Now listen here to us We know everything And if you stare me in the eye And tell me what to believe Well, you really think I'll change overnight? Why don't you believe? Why would you turn away? What is your motive? Where are you going to turn? We have all the answers We know how it works We've figured it all out We've been everywhere And when you stop me on the street And tell me what to believe Well, do you think you can change my mind? I don't have the answers And I probably never will But I don't think it matters Believe in what you want to And let others do the same It's just another point of view We all have our own paths Can you really claim to know mine? Please just let me be You don't know everything I don't need your system I have chosen my own I just want to live my own life Does that make me evil? Am I really damned for eternity?
9.
Es ist eine Weile gewesen Seitdem ich bemerkt habe Dass ich in Deutschland lebe Nicht mehr in Amerika Etwas kann nicht richtig sein Wenn der Reiz fast verschwunden hat Ist es nur die dunk'le Tage Oder ist etwas Anderes los? Vielleicht ist die Einsamkeit Einfach zu viel zu ertragen Vielleicht vermiss' ich zu viel Meine Freunde und Familie Dies ist keine kleine Pause Ich bin ja wirklich weg Und jetzt kommt die große Frage: Kann das meine echte Heimat sein? Translation: It's been a long time Since I've considered the fact That I'm living in Germany I'm not in America anymore Something can't be right If the charm has nearly faded Is it just the dark days Or has something else gone wrong? Perhaps the loneliness Is just too much to handle Perhaps I miss my family And my friends too much This is not just some short break I'm really, truly doing it And now here's the big question: Could this really be my true home?
10.
I walk the streets while the rain falls The sky is dark and the buildings empty Demons haunt my mind, I can't remember anything The clouds above hide the truth from my eyes I wish I could have all the answers I wish I could know what's real I wish the sky wouldn't get dark so early I wish you could be here with me Under these clouds I dream of my death Under the moon I dream of it all When the sun breaks it'll all be over Lost inside the mysteries of the mind To love and to lose To know and forget To have and to break To act on something you don't understand You don't understand...
11.
What do you want from this? What do you want from the world around you? Even when it should be clear You don't seem to know quite what you want You don't know what you want from this You don't seem to match the pattern What are you trying to find? Where do I stand in your journey? I don't seem to fit in the plan I think, after all, this isn't what you thought Why do you keep yourself distant? What do you know that you won't share? I think your path leads away from here You have something hidden inside you That if you find, you could go far and You might finally fit into the puzzle
12.

about

This is a collection of the best material that I've recorded that has not appeared on any of my primary albums. Most of these songs are just demos or unfinished outtakes, so the quality is correspondingly variable. I like these recordings, but they didn't quite fit on the albums proper. Maybe one day they will see further life.

credits

released July 31, 2015

Written by Patrick Vacek, December 2006 – May 2011, except track 10 March 2004 – November 2010.
All instruments and vocals performed by Patrick Vacek, except track 11: guitar and vocals by Patrick Vacek and Joshua Potter, bass by Cristian Pérez Muñoz.
Recorded and mixed by Patrick Vacek at the Vacek Family Studio and the Pestalozzi Palace, January 2007 – May 2011, except as noted, and track 11 recorded by Brad Schumacher and Missing Values.
Remastered by Patrick Vacek in Austin, Texas, July 2015.
Tracks 5-9 and 12 originally appeared on the A Double Life Outtakes compilation, released in 2011.

Thanks to Alyssa, my family, Josh, Cristian, Brad, Josh, Paul, Austin, Jim, Chris, the Students for Gender Equality, Herr Mainka, Nelson, my cats, everyone who listened and/or put up with the noise, and all the musicians I've had the pleasure to play with over the years.

Cover photography by Beth Blumfelder, September 2007; Patrick Vacek, February 2008; Laila Wessel, April 2008; and Joshua Potter, May 2009.

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The Nowhere Man St. Louis, Missouri

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