Don't Fix What's Broken

by Dylan Bell

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1.
04:46
A rainy day in late October Phone is silent on the wall And foolishly I start to wonder Just why you haven't called Then it crashes down before me I struggle up, and turn the page And life goes on, the same as always But everything has changed Daddy-o, my Daddy-o So hard to let you go You came to me while I was sleeping I thought you had something to say But even as I ran towards you You turned and walked away When I awoke, my heart was aching Had to find out what went wrong I tried to will myself to slumber But you'd already gone Daddy-o, my Daddy-o So hard to let you go A rainy day in late October A day the sunshine never came Moaning wind through empty branches Echoing your name So I say the words you used to tell me Every day since I was small "Don't forget, I'll always love you And don't forget to call" Daddy-o, my Daddy-o So hard to let you go I can't let you go
2.
Verse 1 Well you tell me I can never buy a diamond ring To sparkle on my baby’s hand She says the only diamonds she could want Sparkle in the sea and sand Well you tell me that I gotta learn to play the game Better buckle-down and learn my place Well you can take your six figures, your shark-skin suit And shove ‘em up your briefcase Chorus It’s not that I’m lazy… it’s that I just don’t care It’s not that I’m lazy…it’s that I just don’t care You can colour me crazy, say I’m going nowhere It’s not that I’m lazy… it’s that I just don’t care Verse 2 Well you tell me “get working those idle hands Or you’ll find the devil in control” But let me tell you: Your busy hands and your busy heart Leave you no room for your soul So go on, take the biggest, and take the best Take everything your money can buy I’ll be happy living off the rest: The sun, the sea and the blue sky [Chorus] Verse 3 You can have your sixty-hour grindstone Your two lousy weeks of holiday I’ll take the fifty weeks you left behind And groove my life away Maybe one day you’ll realize That you’re tired of being played a fool It sure is easy to play the game When you stop playing by the rules [Chorus]
3.
VERSE 1 She always said I was a work in progress A diamond in the rough She said a lot of stuff about opening my eyes Showing me the world (Even though I never like to venture far from home) But what’s so bad about Even-Steven? Steady and reliable Easily deniable habits and rituals Ground into the bone And I guess that’s why I am alone CHORUS “Don’t fix what’s broken”, I said to her “I just don’t care. Don’t fix what’s broken: what would I do If you’re not there? Cause if you ever go, I’ll never know How to put myself together again” VERSE 2 She said to me “Why don’t you gamble, gamble?” But how can you just give your soul and never count the cost? She said “You’ve got to put your cards on the table” But don’t you understand that nothing ventured, nothing lost? I’ve heard enough about self-improvement Pardon me, I think I’m doing fine all on my own. She said “You’d better loosen up those heartstrings Or you’re gonna wake up all alone.” CHORUS BRIDGE She said “jump into the water” But I don’t like to swim She’ll never understand my reasons why She’ll get tired of my games someday Eventually, she’ll walk away And all I can do is wave goodbye… VERSE 3 I never said I was a genius, genius Never said I didn’t have a thing or two to learn But old dogs, new tricks Matches and a house of sticks Sounds a little like a recipe for getting burned. So don’t go talking ‘bout changes, changes I’ve become accustomed to my fear of the unknown Well baby here’s your hat, but what’s your hurry? And why’d you have to leave me all alone? CHORUS “Don’t fix what’s broken”, I said to her “It’s just not fair. Don’t fix what’s broken: what will I do Now you’re not there" Don’t fix what’s broken, I said to her It’s just no fun Don’t fix what’s broken, now it’s too late I’ve come undone Why did you have to go Now I’ll never know How to put myself together again.
4.
They promised us a shiny dream The likes of which we’d never seen No ifs, ands, buts, or in-betweens It was high times for one and all But it was built on shaky ground The house of cards came crashing down The guys in suits, they all skipped town And let us take the fall Lord, there were better days behind us Let there be better days ahead Lord, there were better days behind us Let there be better days ahead They promised us a holy war A Grand Crusade worth fighting for So we beat our plowshares into swords Jumped on board, and joined the ride The blood upon the desert sand The blood of children on our hands It was all for supply-and-demand They don’t a damn who lived or died Lord, there were better days behind us Let there be better days ahead Lord, there were better days behind us Let there be better days ahead A cold voice on the telephone Tells me she ain’t coming home She’s got to go to somewhere Where the future’s looking bright I didn’t see it coming on Tell me where it all went wrong… They said the best was yet to come Milk and honey for everyone If we all joined hands and played along There’d be high times for you and me So we did our best, played by the rules They played us for a pack of fools Forgetting what we learned in school Ain’t nothing comes for free Lord, there were better days behind us Let there be better days ahead Lord, there were better days behind us Let there be better days ahead
5.
It’s 3 o’clock, and time for tea: A door into my history. Something I can’t understand: A letter in her aging hand. She said “You’ve got his spidery writing And the wrinkle in your brow, that’s his too. I never knew until today How much of him remains in you. Oh Lord, how I miss him When my lonely day is through. “I’m always glad when you stop by”, A tear behind her tired eye. “You know you always did him proud: Can you read this letter, once, out loud?” It said “I never showed you Paris, But I built a little house for you. I wasn’t always perfect, But I did the best that I could do. And you always kept me laughing When my working day was through. “’Cause it’s all in the little things It’s always in the little things They can keep you close or take you far They can plant a kiss, or leave a scar But either way They make us into who we are.” It’s 3 o’clock, and time for tea And memory washes over me I won’t be coming ‘round no more: Time has finally closed that door I won’t be coming ‘round no more… It’s beautiful: a summer day: Time to give the girl away. Something borrowed, something more: The wedding dress that she once wore. I said “You’ve got her pixie figure, And the colour in your cheeks, that’s hers too. I never knew until today How much of her remains in you. And I know she’ll be smiling When this perfect day is through.” Cause it’s all in the little things It’s always in the little things They can keep you close, or take you far They can plant a kiss, or leave a scar But either way They make us into who we are.
6.
You say you’re moving too fast Don’t know how to slow it down How long can you keep flying Before you crash into the ground? Forever spinning You’re sinking while you’re swimming I see an angel face that’s lined with worry Forever racing Don’t know what you’re chasing So stop and tell me baby, what’s your hurry? Keep it simple, Sunshine Time to give your heart a place to land Keep it simple, Sunshine And you can hold forever in your hand Do you remember sleepy mornings Nowhere to go, no-one to be Now I look into the mirror: Is that shadow really me? Forever running Horizon never coming And everything you seek is slipping further away So take a good look around you Take a breath, and follow through It comes back double if you just start living for today Keep it simple, Sunshine Try to make the morning last all day Keep it simple, Sunshine Be careful you don’t give your soul away Take a look at all you’ve got Now take a look at all you’ve lost And ask yourself Ask yourself: is it really worth the cost? Keep it simple, Sunshine Time to teach your heart to understand Keep it simple, Sunshine And you can hold forever in your hand
7.
I read a story, a while ago Told about the Fall of Rome Crazy days… Horses in the Senate, blood in the wine Lady Rome in slow decline Big Fat Nero in the centre of it all Fiddling while Rome burned The story said it was the lead: Poison lead meant poisoned heads (or so I read) Lead in the plumbing, poisoning the wine Sanity in slow decline Lead went liquid in the centre of it all Trickling while Rome burned And they all joined hands, and fiddled while it burned And they all joined hands, and fiddled while it burned I read a story about the Plague Seven hundred years ago: Did you know? Shout-outs to Heaven, wafers and the wine Couldn’t slow the wrath this time Black Armageddon, the ending of it all Fiddling while Rome burned And they all joined hands, and fiddled while it burned And they all joined hands, and fiddled while it burned ‘Cause they’d come right back to the point of no return So they all joined hands, and fiddled while they burned… I read a story yesterday Summer’s never going away (or so they say) Suntans in winter, icicles in June Oceans rising to the moon We all stand naked in the pressure-cooker sun Thinking that we won’t get burned So turn it up a few degrees Bring a planet to its knees Blame the fella in his monster SUV Blame everybody else, but don’t blame me I got my head buried firmly in the sand Thinking that I won’t get burned. And we all join hands, and fiddle while it burns And we all join hands, and fiddle while it burns ‘Cause we’ve come right back to the point of no return So let’s all join hands, and fiddle while we burn…
8.
You pulled me to my window Beacon in the cold streetlight Lonliness has cast me on an island out of sight Angel in a raincoat Acting like you don’t see me Looking like your loneliness has washed you out to sea Unlock the door Pull you ashore Cause I need to know you now Baby, don’t cry There ain’t no sin in sorrow So take my hand and don’t ask why It ain’t rocket science baby We’re just two lonely people who can try To make it through the day You worry about the future Calculate the wrong and right Seems that everything you know is framed in black and white I can’t see tomorrow I can’t remember yesterday I guess that everything I see is wrapped in shades of grey Let bridges fall Don’t speak at all Cause I need to know you now And baby, don’t cry There ain’t no sin in sorrow So take my hand and don’t ask why It ain’t rocket science baby We’re just two lonely people who can try To make it through the day The solace found in silence The sanctity of skin on skin It’s hard to tell where one soul ends and where the next begins Just let the rain Erase the pain Cause I need to know you now And baby, don’t cry There ain’t no sin in sorrow So take my hand and don’t ask why It ain’t rocket science baby We’re just two lonely people who can try To make it through the day
9.
Scene 1: Open with a crane-shot Twelve miles off the shore It’s cargo for dinero But he won’t tell me any more Packed in shiny boxes But he won’t tell me what’s inside Well I might be the captain, but I’m just along for the ride He tells me: Ask me fewer questions I’ll tell you fewer lies You don’t want the bigger picture So let me cut it down to size You don’t really want to know the score We’ll leave a few scenes on the cutting-room floor Scene 2: Jump-cut to Wall Street Double-martini in my hand Spinning straw with Rumplestilskin But I just don’t understand He tells me "The return on your investment Will leave you laughing at the moon!” Well I might pay the piper But he’s the one that calls the tune He tells me: Ask me fewer questions I’ll tell you fewer lies You don’t want the bigger picture So let me cut it down to size You don’t really want to know the score We’ll leave a few scenes on the cutting-room floor You don’t mess with supply-and-demand And the more you know, the less you’ll want to understand Scene 3: Tight closeup on the anchorman Getting ready for the show My lead story’s gonna shake it up But they tell me it’s a no-go Well the word came from City Hall They want to make the story go away Well I might be the talking-head But they still tell me what to say They say: Ask me fewer questions I’ll tell you fewer lies You don’t want the bigger picture So let me cut it down to size You don’t really want to know the score We’ll leave a few scenes on the cutting-room floor You don’t mess with supply-and-demand And the more you know, the less you’ll want to understand
10.
04:18
Standing on the threshold, feeling scared Uncertain, unrehearsed, and unprepared The play has started, but I’ve lost my lines The journey has begun but I can’t read the signs It’s time now: I have to say goodbye Don’t ask me: don’t know the reasons why But it’s time to fly They say you can’t move forward standing still The tell me all it takes is strength of will But maybe they’re just words that people say And tomorrow’s dreams will be eclipsed by yesterday Go on now: I know that’s a lie I hope so: at least I have to try To learn to fly Take a look around you All you find are open doors And who knows what is on the other side? And though it may confound you No-one tells you which is yours But half the fun is trying: Half the fun is flying… I’ve never been a fan of long goodbyes So let me be concise, and summarize: The time we’ve had together, hold it dear And though I won’t be with you, know my heart’s still here I’m gone now: a glimmer in the sky And someday, you’ll know the reason why: You gave me wings to fly
11.
03:37
What are you doing? Doin’ nothin Why do you do it? I don’t know What are you thinking? Thinkin’ somethin Try’n to decide which way to go Maybe I’ll be a race-car driver Build me a spaceship, sail to Mars But that’d distract me From doin’ nothin Feels too fast and looks too far But take a good look on the other side Sure looks good on the other side Look at those people Doin’ somethin’ What are they doing? I don’t know Scrapin’ and scratchin’ All for nothin’ Thinking they’ve got some pl ace to go And take a good look at the other side Sure looks good on the other side Don’t try to tell me I must do something What would you ask me? I don’t know I’m happy to see you Keep on runnin’ But take a deep breath before you go And take a good look on the other side Sure looks good on the other side
12.
Time to tell you all a little goodnight story About Junior Boy and Future Girl She came on back, ‘cross space and time To tell her man what’s coming round A little bit further down the world. Lemme tell you: She’s the force that’s unstoppable He’s the object, immoveable. So people, let the show begin… Junior Boy says “what's with the little crooked-ass smile You’re looking like the cat what caught the bird”. Future Girl just laughed and said “Baby if you seen what I saw, you’d be grinnin’ too For now, just take me at my word. Lemme tell you: I’m the force that’s unstoppable You’re the object, immoveable So baby, let the sparks begin. Cause even through the ups and downs I found there was you When the world was turned around Behind me was you Even when I lost my way Beside me was you There always was you” “You better understand I sometimes gonna make you crazy Lord knows you’ll drive me up the wall. But lemme tell ya: I got the laws of gravity Wrapped around my finger So take my hand, and let us fall Cause baby, we’re the force that’s unstoppable You’re the object immoveable So honey, let your Future in”.
13.
03:43
Well, I suppose you’ll tell me That I cannot change a thing Well, I hear you… Forgive me if I try to prove you wrong Cause someone, somewhere, told me something I don’t know who it was Can’t remember But it’s the thing that helps me get along Please play fair Tell no lies Be good to people Open up your eyes Tell me that it’s complicated Tell me I’m a child In the real world A nice guy’s just a sucker with a smile And maybe there is just no room For sentiments like these But no matter… At least you were distracted for a while Please play fair Tell no lies Be good to people Open up your eyes Don’t tell me it’s impossible I’ve walked this road before And believe me… I stumble far more often than I stand But everyone believes in something I believe in you So come with me And if you fall I’ll try to lend a hand Please play fair Tell no lies Be good to people Open up your eyes
14.
Sullen rain Won’t leave me alone Broken rain Falling like the tears that fell for you Last November In a cold and barren hinterland You slipped away among the ghosts Of Admiral Byrd and Hilary Lonely days Drenched in soggy linen Wrapped around me like a shroud Careless days, and long-forgotten nights Of scotch and supper Stories of adventure (false and true) The folly of our youth: We thought we’d live forever If only you had known Would you have changed a single thing About your life, and how you life you lived it? Or is this ours to ask? If only we had known Would it have changed a single thing? It’s not for us to ask: We may as well direct the wind We may as well divine the rain Wanderlust was always your religion So answer me: Why’d you have to wander far away Where I can’t find you? Gone before your time, and out of time Beyond our time, you leave us Picking up the pieces Year will pass And all we’ll have is memory But I don’t mind Cause all that I can do is carry on And I’ll see you Hiding in the strangest places: Words and phrases, picture-frames Or maybe I will find you In the sullen rain
15.
04:44
If I had a digitized index In a microchip inside my home If I had a digitized index That could find all the stuff I own It wouldn’t take me an hour just to find my shoes I could file away the junk that I never use Nothing misplaced and nothing to lose If I had a digitized index Everything would be squeaky-clean, oh yeah Everything would be squeaky-clean If I had an undo-button Plastered to the roof of my mouth If I had an undo button Whenever conversation ran south I could take back the things that I said to you The thoughtless deeds that made you so blue Every word that I say would be shiny and true If I had an undo-button You and me would be peachy-keen, oh yeah You and me would be peachy-keen If I had a backup system When my processor’s had enough If I had a backup system Whenever things got too tough If could have me a meltdown in the pouring rain I could hit “restart” and it would all be the same There’d be nothing lost, and nothing gained If I had a backup system Everything would be so serene, oh yeah Everything would be so serene But I don’t have a digitized index So I guess I’ll keep looking for clues An I can’t find that undo-button So I hope that you’ll forgive and forget Still don’t have no backup system So I’ll have to keep this ship afloat And I guess I’ll muddle through somehow, oh yeah I know I’ll muddle through somehow
16.
I guess I always had an easy ride And when I landed I came down fast I never was afraid of shadows I never clamoured for the past But then I stared into the mirror Didn’t recognize the man that I saw I’d finally stumbled through the looking glass And couldn’t find my way back home A poster child for independence I’d always make it on my own But when your soul is smashed to pieces It’s the fool goes it alone But sometimes strength must come from weakness And letting go doesn’t mean giving in And though I had to learn the hard way I guess I’m wiser in the end And even through the ups and downs I found there was you And when my world got turned around Behind me was you And when I thought I’d lost my way Beside me was you There always was you I’d love to say I came out grinning I walked through fire and came out clean And while that looks good on the pages It just don’t jibe with where I’ve been But you always said I was a fighter I never believed you, at least until now And though I’m nursing cuts and bruises I know that I’ll survive somehow And even through the ups and downs I found there was you And when my world got turned around Behind me was you And when I thought I’d lost my faith Beside me was you There always was you I catch myself longing for yesterday As if the good things will never last But how can I embrace the future If I can’t make peace with the past? I almost let it take the best of me And there are days when it still might be true But I close my eyes and I remember And all I was And all I am And all I will be Gives thanks to you.

about

This album is a work-in-progress: collection of "mostly-there" songs will be eventually retooled and released as an album. I'd love some input from you the listener: favourite songs, least favourite, etc. Please let me know what you think at dylan@dylanbell.ca . New stuff is being added, so check in to see what's changed

To hear my non-pop stuff, please check out the album "Alter Ego". Enjoy!

credits

released July 11, 2016

Dylan Bell - vocals and vocalizations, basses, acoustic and electric guitars, piano/keyboards, drums, percussion

Suba Sankaran - background vocals on "Other Side"

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Dylan Bell Toronto, Ontario

In a word... multifaceted. Toronto-based songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and producer. From a neo-classical choral opus to an unabashed rock song, I've probably written it... or at least working on it. I'm fortunate enough to make my work my play, touring across North America, Europe, and Asia. Visit me at www.dylanbell.ca ... more

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