All the Way Home

by Ben Travis

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about

This is an original album of songs written while I watched my dad die of cancer over the course of several months. While the subject matter is somewhat dark, I found the process of writing and recording this album to be very therapeutic. My father struggled with alcoholism throughout his life, and I had many conflicting feelings as I wrote these songs. As you listen, you will find that this level of suffering produces a great level of inspiration as well.

credits

released January 1, 2004

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about

Ben Travis Nashville, Tennessee

I’m a Nashville-based independent artist and songwriter. My style has been described as gentle, yet thoughtful, inviting listeners to think and ask meaningful questions about the world around them.

I learned to play the piano by watching my dad play. I then attended Belmont University in Nashville, TN, and graduated with a music degree in 1996.
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Track Name: All the Way Home
All the way home
I thought to myself
"Where did I go wrong?
Why couldn't this be someone else?"
All the way home
I fought back the tears
So many lost years
So many lost hopes and dreams
that I thought would come true
But I guess they weren't meant to be

So all the way home
I tried to believe
that something like this
couldn't happen to me

All the way home
I thought of the way
I spent every moment
finding ways to drown my pain
And all the way home
I cursed at the sky
and wondered how I
ever got here at all
It all started so well
But I guess I just played too long

So all the way home
I tried to admit
that this was my life
and I made a mess of it

All the way home
I thought about life
how we pay our money
and we roll the dice
Around and around
and around it goes
and where it stops
nobody knows

and all the way home
I cried and I cried
at how quickly I've come
to the end of the line

All the way home
I never believed
that something like this
could happen to me
I never thought
it would end this way
with so much at stake
and so much thrown away

And all the way home
I thought to myself
"If this is the end
why couldn't it happen to
somebody else?"
Track Name: I Wonder
Looking at you lying there
I face my own mortality
Looking out the window now
I see the wind blow through the trees
And I wonder... what it's like behind your eyes
And I wonder... if part of you already died

Thinking back to times we had
It seems impossible to me
That you could be the way you are
A stranger to reality
And I wonder... what it's like behind your eyes
And I wonder... if part of you already died

Looking at you lying there
I face my own mortality
Looking out the window now
I see the wind blow through the trees

And I wonder... what it's like behind your eyes
And I wonder... if this is all there is to life
And I wonder... what lies on the other side
And I wonder... if part of you already died
Track Name: Enigma
(chorus)
Enigma… did anyone really know you?
Enigma… did anyone understand you?
Enigma… did anyone really see you?
Enigma… did anyone really hear you?
And did you feel the love of the hearts around you?

Did you try to hide your demons
So no one could ever see them
Did you try to hide the pain that kept you up at night?

Did you want to change the world
Then find out it was too broken?
Did you try to find true love, but could not get it right?
[to chorus]

Did you find it hard to trust?
Did you think someone might cheat you?
Were you ever satisfied with anyone at all?

Did you ever have a dream
That turned out to be too elusive?
Did you think you’d have more time to really set things right?
[to chorus]

Enigma… did anyone see the real you?
Enigma… did anyone know what to do?
Enigma… did anyone really know you?
Enigma… did anyone understand you?
Did you feel the love of the hearts around you?
Track Name: It's Over Now
So many things I thought I'd have the time to say
But it's over now, and I did not find a way
So many years I sat and watched you rot away
But I never had the time to stop the pain
No, I never had the time to stop the pain

(chorus)
But it's over now
Yes it's over now
And I guess if you asked me I'd say
it's a hell of a price to pay
to get your name in the paper for free
and I guess if you asked me
I wish you'd stay

I couldn't see at the time why you wanted me to come
To sit with you seemed pointless when you were so drunk
Now I see the lonely man you were back then
And I wish I could do it all over again
Yes, I wish I could do it all over again
[to chorus]

I guess I never put myself in your shoes
I guess I never tried to see
through your eyes
I might have been surprised
[to chorus]
Track Name: Never Been Lonely
(verse 1)
Well, I look in the mirror
and I see a hollow shell
of the fun loving guy I used to be
Well, I look at my life
and I see it’s gone to hell
No one’s really sure what happened to me

(chorus)
But I’ve never been lonely
I’ve never been lonely
No, not a single day
No, I’ve never been lonely
even though sometimes my only friend
is the bottle in my hand

(verse 2)
Well, I turn on the tv
and I try to watch the news
Not much going on that interests me
Well, I look in the sink
and I see it’s full of booze
Must have tried to quit again last night at three
[to chorus]

(coda)
Sometimes I think I would have
enjoyed the American dream, but
I just couldn’t make it
work out right
Track Name: John Barleycorn
You told me that I was so smart
You told me that I was so strong
I didn't think I'd ever leave you
But you've been around me too long

(chorus)
You put up a good fight I know
But I'm telling you it's the end
Even though you're still out there for me
John Barleycorn you're not a good friend

When it was time to celebrate
You were right there with me each day
But you were taking all my time
Driving some good friends away
[to chorus]

Sometimes I still miss you, you know
We went out again and again
But now it's fun just to wake up
And remember where I have been
[to chorus]
Track Name: Shoot Me in the Head (before you put me in a nursing home)
(verse 1)
A woman pushes her husband down the hall
Outside the door
You won’t see any carpet here
They’ve got concrete floors

You can hear other people’s televisions
And an old man screaming just down the hall
And the funeral home made up a calendar
And now it’s hanging there on the wall

(chorus)
We all want to hold on to life
And hold our own
But shoot me in the head before you
Put me in a nursing home
(verse 2)
Fluorescent lights come on at night
And make our faces pale
And if it had better locks on the doors
You could call it a jail

There’s a cord with a button on the end
But it might be a while till anyone comes
And the man sleeping in the next bed
Wakes up in the middle of the night and hums

(bridge)
Yeah yeah, I can smell the food from here
Yeah yeah, we could be here for years
Track Name: Demon
(verse 1)
the taste of wine still lingers in my mouth
as I wake up
and I guess I must have passed out
when i finally had enough

and the world is spinning all around
as I stumble down the hall
and I can't remember why I ever
started this at all...

(chorus)
Why can't I put this demon down
why can't I throw it to the ground
why can't I put this demon down?

(verse 2)
I look back on my life and I could say
I tried my best
But if I get a grade for this
I guess I failed the test

Now... I put on my coat
and wander out the door
And take a swig so I don't
think about this anymore
Track Name: How Do I Let You Go
(verse 1)
How do I let you go
How do I let you know
That you have changed my life
Just by loving me the same… every day

How do I close my eyes
How do I say goodbye
To part of who I am
Part of every note I play

(chorus)
And I guess I’ve always known
That this day would come
But it always seemed far away
And even though I can admit
That it’s part of life
Why does it have to be today?

(verse 2)
How do I find a way
To say what I should say
So everyone will see
What you really mean to me?

How can I disguise
When they try to sympathize
And I can’t stand to smile
And pretend that I’m okay
Track Name: Today
Today I think about how strange
it is to hold you in my arms one moment
then give you away
to a darkness that I cannot see through
Perhaps tomorrow I will understand it better than I do

Today the weather seems so cold
and even though the Sun is shining
there’s a blanket on my soul
and I try to tell myself it’s for the best
but you should know that you will always be with me
and I confess

I must have taken you for granted oh, so many times
I must have told you that I loved you
without looking in your eyes, and now

Today everything’s so clear
and as I hear you take your final breath
I can’t find the tears
but I think of all the moments we have shared
and I know all of my tomorrows will be better ‘cause you cared for me

Today