1. Universal Soul

From the recording Strangely Familiar

One of my consistent favorites to perform, I like to visit different places in the third verse, depending on my mood. The father mentioned is a nod to my alleged birth father, who I never met. The opening line honors one of my favorite highways, the Taconic in New York.


Take the Catatonic Parkway down past Whiskey Boulevard
Or ride a draft horse with no saddle I’ll be waiting in the yard
Quit yer whining we can’t lose – we got us an ace in the hole
Raise a toast to the Universal Soul

She had olive oil eyes lightly tinged with utter sadness
She was incarnated joy afflicted with a kind of madness
That makes you hopeful and afraid – makes you come in from the cold
Rest awhile in the Universal Soul

He bought a yellow El Dorado and pointed it toward Vegas
But he broke down out in Bakersfield with the truckers and the beggars
Now he can’t recall his name – his motivations or his goals
And he signed on to the Universal Soul

It’s a special kinda hell born of utter discontent
Cause no matter what you say nobody knows what you meant
Now you’re picking up the bones – you’re giving ‘em one more roll
How about a seven for the Universal Soul

Well my old man’s in Daytona playing bocce by the sea
He remembers Henry Miller but he don’t remember me
He was personal friends, y’see – with old Nat King Cole
And they’re jamming in the Universal Soul

I can easily be rendered to a state of utter silence
It’s the only sane response to a world that filled with violence
I am riding yesterday – I am going with the flow
Down the drain of the Universal Soul
Down the drain of the Universal Soul