The Hoagland Conspiracy


All songs by Ted Hoagland
© 1997 - 2005 Ted Hoagland

1. Home Alive
2. Shadows On The Sun
3. Turn It On
4. Break A Fall
5. Indian Summer
6. N Zone
7. Go Easy On Me
8. Jerry
9. Salesman
10. Voice of Reason
11. Single Tear
The Hoagland Conspiracy

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Home Alive

My entrails like details
Left and forgotten
My saddle like a battle
Lost in the past
When they said skidattle
I came home fast

Came home alive
But not entirely well
Most folks couldn’t tell

My whistles like missiles
Long and round
My crying like spying
There’s a wall downtown
I served up some dying
They said stand down

Sent me home alive
But not entirely well
Most folks couldn’t tell

My noodle like a bugle
Bright as day
My desire like a cease fire
Carved in clay
They brokered my peace
I ran away

Came home alive
But not entirely well
Most folks couldn’t tell

(return to song list)

Shadows on the Sun

In her robe standing there
With offerings to share
Will you compromise
You run away down the stairs
Into the midnight air
And plan your next disguise
You thought you might
Throw shadows on the sun

You stood her up one last time
A pedestal to climb
Now you understand
Out of sight but on your mind
All she left behind
Were footprints in the sand
You thought you might
Throw shadows on the sun
That’s just what every mother
Tells her son

A golden boy takes your hand
And leads you through a land
Where every color shines
There she lay by your side
Smiling through your pride
And you made up your mind
You thought you might
Throw shadows on the sun
That’s just what every mother
Tells her son

(return to song list)

Turn It On

In the morning I wake up and chase away my dreams
Join the world of vertical invention
Every sip of coffee pulls some stitches into seams
Tightening the span of my attention
I see neighbors on their way to something just like me
In our passing there’s a brief reflection
Walk the talk of progress like a captain lost at sea
Sitting all alone with my connection

Turn it on
From the inside
Shine it everywhere
There’s a castle on the hillside
Bring it down
What’s there

Out across the waves I see kaleidoscopic light
Holding hands with sunset on the water
In between my legs I feel the tickling of the night
Distant cries of would be sons and daughters
Then I turn and see the lovely smile upon your face
You can’t tell me that’s just information
Entropy will tackle us and drag us into space
Sometimes that’s our greatest consolation

Repeat chorus

Net the naked impulse to sing love songs to the moon
Flatten it with instant imitation
Wound up to survive the danger scratching my cocoon
Sensing I’ve outgrown my insulation

Break A Fall

You sat on the edge of the bed
Decision ripe in you head
With a ticket for the last flight that night
Through clouds that might
Break a fall

Your Dad speckled you with spit
As he raged in your face in a fit
Through the window you slid down the wall
To grass that might
Break a fall

There’s no one guide you
No angel beside you
You must find your way
Through this game all alone
But these dreams of flying
Still fill your mind

You go west until the sea
And you be what they ask you to be
Drop your luggage and walk down the stairs
To clouds that might
Break a fall

(return to song list)

Indian Summer

Spread the word light up the fire
Tonight we’re gonna push it just a little bit higher

Sleepy Fred’s the first one in
Arms all full of something he’s got up to his chin

Small town Sue, smiles like a beam
Brought her best friend and some cans of whipped cream

Bicep Bob, backs through the door
Don’t go out for nothing cause he bought out the store

Indian Summer keeping us warm
As the sun falls out of the sky
We’ll catch it on the other side

Thrift store Jane, so glad she came
Brought her horned-rimmed humor and a couple of games

Hightop Hal, here come the jokes
Baring his new tattoo with a fresh pack of smokes

Lands End John, just in time
Straight into the kitchen with a bunch of cheap wine

Spindle Sam, we’ll be up late
Keeps his party vinyl in a four gallon crate


Barefoot Kim, bumming along
Drops a watermelon as she ditches her thongs

Charlie Freak, bald as a peach
Dragging in some driftwood that he scored at the beach

Toolbelt Tom, approaches the scene
He aint even here yet we can hear his machine

Gorgeous Gwen, looking so nice
Had the good sense to bring a fresh bag of ice

(return to song list)

N Zone

I went to the master
He spoke of disaster
And bended my one good knee
I sat through his spinning
And slow motion grinning
And now I’m the guy with the key

I casted like hell
Gathered a cell
And taught them to pay me, no mine
We spread through the land
In bus and in van
Got people waiting in line

Baptisms at Penny’s
Bar mitzvahs at Denny’s
We came at a fortune a time
Broke into a song
With bells and a gong
And into the air I would climb

Step on up
To the N Zone
The one divinity
Welcome back
To your true home
And I am the guy with the key

Then one night in Reno
This gal playing keno
Asks me to wish her some luck
I gave her my hand
Remarked on her tan
The instant her fortune was struck

She bounced like a pogo
And danced like a go go
The lights and the cameras were hot
I proffered a ring
She called for The King
He married us right on the spot

We made quite a team
This winner and me
Partners in grand design
I handled the church
She peddled the merchandise
Where there was always a line

Repeat Chorus

So one day the phone rings
The President’s holding
I’m spinning around in my chair
He starts asking questions
I make some suggestions
And soon Air Force One’s in the air

You won’t believe this then
The Baptists have hit men
They kicked in my dressing room door
Threw scripture at me
Busted my knee
The one I brought back from the war

I yelled for my wife
We ran for my life
Went down Mexico way
And there I was banished
With my high school Spanish
Y como se dice porque

Venga aqui
Al N Zone
La una divinidad
A su casa
Y yo soy el hombre con la llave

Soon I got homesick
The place was so Catholic
I kept bumping into the Pope
I slid into Texas
About halfway through breakfast
I greased up the slippery slope

We set up a station
Broadcast to the nation
The money fell out of thin air
The Baptists start talking
The taxman comes knocking
Everyone’s wanting their share

They hoisted my jig
Impacted my pig
Even my wife had a spree
Now I’m just the master
Awaiting the bastard
Who gets to take over for me

Repeat Chorus

(return to song list)

Go Easy On Me

Go easy on me
On our first date
If I show up on time
When I should have been late
If I don't seem to notice
Your brand new dress
If I shaved three times
But my hair is a mess
If I call your mom Betty
When her name is Bess
I'm askin’ go easy on me

Go easy on me
If I act like a fool
Whenever I'm with you
I can't keep my cool
I swear that I'm suave
Most of the time
But you've got me out of my mind

If I take you out dancin’
And step on your feet
If I write you a letter
When I live down the street
If I bring you a daisy
Instead of a rose
If I tell you I love you
With food on my nose
If I start telling stories
I already told
I'm askin’ go easy on me

The first time I met you
I thanked my heart for beating
I thanked God for cheating
And makin’ you

Go easy on me
If I'm down on my knees
Waxing romantic
Unbearable cheese
If I'm under your window
But I can't sing
If I wrote you a poem
And forgot the whole thing
If I reach for my pocket
And there's no ring
I'm askin’, I'm beggin’ go easy on me

(return to song list)


Jerry likes to drive a bit too fast
Never likes to let things get too clear
Jerry grab a bottle make it last
Break into a smile from ear to ear

He just got back from Mexico
He was down there for some vice
He brought me back a phonograph
And a glowing pair of dice
And now he’s gone

Jerry likes to stand out in the rain
Says that God must want to wash him clean
Jerry sometimes laughs like he’s insane
Claims he’s got a midget in his spleen

He just got back from Oregon
He was up there for some work
He brought me back a telephone
That was shaped like Captain Kirk
And now he’s gone

Jerry likes to drive a bit too fast
Likes to punch the needle in the red
Jerry never thought much about the past
Nor the future much, I guess, he’s dead

He once came back from Arkansas
He was out there with some girls
He brought me back a fountain pen
That was mounted in some burl
And now he’s gone

(return to song list)


I was born without a father
Raised on mama’s pride
She said believe in what you’re selling son
And look them in the eye

High school wasn’t teaching much
I had to graduate myself
Went off into America
To accumulate some wealth

I’m a traveling salesman
I work from door to door
And I’m the last you’ll ever see
They don’t make us anymore
One day I’ll come knocking
‘Cause I’ve got what you need
Right here in this shiny box
Satisfaction guaranteed

I started out with vacuums
Then it was those knives
I sold clichés and better days
To nice Midwestern wives

I get up in the morning
Choose from my three ties
Grab the rear view mirror
And I say into my eyes

Repeat Chorus

Vocal Ad Lib

Third Chorus:
I’m a traveling salesman
I work from door to door
And I’m the last you’ll ever see
They don’t make us anymore
One day I’ll be famous
Living out my dream
Own a condo on the beach
And sell stuff on TV

(return to song list)

Voice of Reason

The cracks along the sidewalk
suburban decay
the trees are nice
it’s paradise
a perfect place to play
the stores are always open
the music’s always on
all there’s left to do is sing along

The voice of reason
calls your name
choice and freedom
are not always the same
wisdom doesn’t come
with an opposable thumb
with all those tricks
you still can’t fix the game

A token conversation
I say A you B
Z and I beneath the bubble tree


Whistling in the bathroom
Dixie dawn patrol
couplets in the chorus
run the last sheet off the roll
overdone convention
there must be some retreat
a satellite where you and I can meet


(return to song list)

Single Tear

Twelve lights in between your house and mine
Some nights all turn green and I’m there in no time
Darkness in your eyes the porch light can’t return
Kiss me one more time and make the torches learn
To shine

A single tear hot and sweet
Hits the pavement by your feet
Was it mine could it be
That some love poured out of me

I know when you call just by the way it rings
We go to the mall just laughing through the things
This town can’t contain a happiness this real
Deep down we’re just children learning how to feel
To shine

Repeat Chorus

(return to song list)

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© 2006 Ted Hoagland