The Divine Game

by Orion Freeman

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The debut full length record by Orion Freeman

Thank you for supporting independent music! Your generous contribution helps assure there will plenty more to come! :)


released July 1, 2014

Orion Freeman – Vocals, Guitars, Harmonies, Electric Bass (2), Kazoo, Gong
Bryn Davies – Acoustic Upright Bass
Kevin Raczka – Drums
Luke Notary – Percussion, Drums (2)
Nikhil Yerawadekar – Keys (Hammond C3 Organ, Wurlitzer, Casio, Pump Organ)

Seth Paris – Alto & Tenor Saxes, Clarinets
Ric Becker -- Trombone
Nadav Nirenberg -- Trombone, Sousaphone
Sam Hoyt -- Trumpet
Nathan Koci -- French Horn

Hannah Min – 1st Violin
Sarah Franklin – 2nd Violin
Elise Frawley – Viola
Aminda Asher – Cello

Jeff Selby -- Harmonies
Ginger Coyle – Harmonies, Fender Rhodes (8)

Additional Playas:
Kwesi K – Harmonies (9,12)
Emily Lewis – Harmonies (10,11)
Rameses – Beatbox (3)
Bob Beach – Harmonica (3)
Andrew Green – Banjo (2)
Stu Fuchs – Ukulele (5), Slide Resonator Guitar (8)
Jacob Jeffries – Melodica (5)
Morgan Price – Alto Sax (4)
David Steinberg – Tenor Sax (4)
Jeff Walton – Tenor Sax (4)
Jonah Parzen-Johnson -- Baritone Sax (4)
Bell Ananda Hennessey – Baby Gigglez (12)


Lyrics and Music by Orion Freeman

String & Horn Arrangements by Seth Paris

Co-Produced by Seth Paris and Orion Freeman

Recorded by Seth Paris @ Seaside Lounge Recording Studios in Brooklyn, NY

Additional Recording by Randy Weaver @ Breakout Recording in Palmyra, NJ | Todd Mecaughey @ Cambridge Sound Studios in Philly, PA | Orion Freeman @ The Nest in Doylestown, PA & The Void in Rosemont, PA

Mixed & Mastered by Jim Salamone @ Cambridge Sound Studios in Philadelphia, PA

Additional Mixing by Todd Mecaughey and Orion Freeman

Collage Album Art by Derek Gores
Original Cover Photo by Kwesi K

Executive Producer: Harrison Crecraft


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Orion Freeman Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Orion Freeman is a singing, songwriting, guitar-playing seeker from the woods just beyond the mortar and bricks of Philadelphia. His souled-out, reggae-infused, flamenco-tinged, bluesy folk-rock aspires to move: your shoes; your heart; the cobwebs, so as to allow your soul to shine...

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Track Name: Same Direction
(Verse 1)
Reminiscing about the old days,
the new day is come
reminiscing about the old days, the new day is gone
I can feel myself fallin
I can hear myself callin out your name
I’m left with visions of the sweetness in your eyes
reminded of the time I became the sunrise
But you chose to go and I’m forced to stay
dawn’s turned to dusk and tomorrow’s the same
it’s always the same, tomorrow’s the same

Since we don’t got nothin good to talk about
let’s just think about the old times and rock about
in the same direction

(Verse 2)
I still remember the very first time that we met
still I wonder what it takes for me to forget
the ups and downs that we once had
trade the heavens and the hell that comes with regret
For a little something closer to my home
a little something that reminds me I’m not alone
Now the magic has returned to fill the air
an example of a man who’s relinquished his fear
I relinquish my fear, no more fear
Track Name: The Corporation
(Verse 1)
Woke up this mornin, got the blues again.
My mind is full, spirit’s empty. It don’t make no sense.
I got my throw back jersey on, my new designer jeans– I should be at least halfway to heaven according to them marketing schemes.
But my dreams done turned to nightmares cause I forgot to replace the spiritual wealth I traded for a pocket full of change.
I’ll let you in on a secret (people been crucified for less):It ain’t about the
dollars but the love you invest

The corporation– it’s starting to take hold
When it stared out it was innocent now it’s out of control
The corporation–monopoly ain’t just a game
got us tradin away our futures for the minimum wage

(Verse 2)
I am lion! Hear me roar!
If ya don’t like where things are headed, see your ass to the door.
Cause there’s a thousand others behind you and there’ll be a thousand more of them half-witted worker bees who are willing to believe the story that I’m in it for their best interests, the betterment of society... But if they look to their own history then they would clearly see that my momma’s name is Materialism and my poppa’s name is Greed.
So when you do the math you’re only left with Self-deficient seeds.

(Verse 3)
The corporation– raping a town near you...
dippin their greedy paws in everything that you do.
The corporation– it ain’t just a game
got us tradin away our futures for the minimum wage

The Corporation’s comin now....
Track Name: Walk On By
(Verse 1)
I was minding my own business all the way down in Memphis
when this self-righteous kid thought he’d give me some lessons
on how to be a real man like his homies Smith & Wesson
the way the ignorance was raining you’d think it was Texas

It’s time I take a step back get my head on straight
cause I’m losin my perspective– you’re fallin out of my grace
and I ain’t tryin to go to war in order to prove who’s king
and I sure as hell ain’t willing to die

Just walk on by
I don't want none of that no good vibe in my life
Just walk on by
I'ma take the high road, leave your trouble behind
Just walk on by

(Verse 2)
Ever since I met you I’ve been buttin my head
wake up in the mornin on the side of the bed
you fill my tank up with diesel when you know I take unleaded
now this old boy’s about to break on down

I said my love don’t sing and my sun don’t shine
when you’re drownin out my heart and you’re coverin up my eyes
do as your momma told ya– gotta learn to play nice
or keep your motha_______ hands to yourself
Track Name: Bitter/Sweet
Shugga gon be on my mind
til my honey comes around
Bittersweet woman won’t ya move to my beat
cause you know just how I like to get down
Hit up my baby for some chocolate cause I like to keep it rockin
but she always gives me semi-sweet
Must be love on the inside but I ain’t tryin to play Hide-
And-Mother%*$#@-Go-Seek, yer just a bit bittersweet

(Verse 1)
Push and pull, silk and wool
Ice cube within the fire
Gotsta love the clouds above
Til we roll off the other side

(Verse 2)
Butterflies, where’s and why’s
wondering when you gon come
Stupid is as stupid does
We play a game that ain’t even fun

This been goin on for too long
When we started off it was exciting
But now you’ve lost your sugar coat
And now you just ain’t that sweet
Track Name: Lovely Lady
(Verse 1)
They were talkin about my lady
Mesmerized by the way that she moves
They say, “but that girl she don’t go nowhere
without her back pocket full of blues.”

She knows sometimes these times are hard
They’re harder than a stone
She says, “I’m just gonna go on and take what is mine
until I can find a home.”

Lovely, oh lovely lady
won’t you stay with me tonight?
When everything I’m doing feels like it's so wrong,
you make me feel alright.

(Verse 2)
She spends sleepless days and nights
wishing that she could feel warmth
She says, “Every time I find a little shelter,
in moves the next winter storm.

It seems like an endless charade of broken hearts,
salted wounds and unfulfilled dreams–
I’m silenced by a stream of bitter tear drops;
Why can’t things ever be more than they seem?”

(Verse 3)
So I say–– I even pray –
that she finds some rest within her soul
Good times they come and then they go,
as the Lord watches it all with open arms.
Track Name: Dark Side of the Sun
(Verse 1)
She said the only time you call me is when your sorry
all apologies for what your silence said
and the only time you muster any sincerity
is when your tryin to drag me off to bed
but I’m callin today to tell you that I’ve had it
I’ve had it with your deceitful bedroom eyes
and this time I’m standing firm--
chalk it up to a thousand lessons learned
watch me dance the night away
on a mountain of discarded lies

Why can’t you just move on so that we could get along
Play a game nobody wins, answerless questions, no good intent
Why is this so frustrating? Got me waiting for that time to come
when you say goodbye forever, see you on the dark side of the sun

(Verse 2)
You know I never ever meant to play you
oh, and by the way I play myself
with the precision of a dart
I got a bull’s eye on the middle of my forehead
but somehow it makes its way down to my heart
So let’s leave the past in the past where it belongs
and won’t you let me take it right down to the point
you know I wanna take you home–
let the music put us past the edge of the known
don’t even care if we make it out the other side

One day you gonna wake up and find that I’m gone
along with the warmth that I wasted on your pillow for so long
oh girl make up your mind take some action before its too late
and you’re cryin on your pillow all alone
for someone to put you back to sleep
Track Name: Delusional Epiphanies
(Verse 1)
Hey Mister, are you a star?
I bet you live large– six car garage
Tell me what you say– if I play my cards right
you think maybe you could make me one too?
Cause I noticed you had a big shiny ring
a Barbie doll on your arm, a black Lincoln limousine
Don’t answer to no one in your mansion in the hills
you must be the happiest man alive

Hey princess I love your hair
love the way that you smile, love the clothes that you wear
Remember that time we exchanged that stare?
well, I think that I may be in love
Cause I can’t live without you— don’t know how I can go on
we were meant to be together–– we got the same favorite song
I’ve known you’re the one for me all along
all them other women never meant a thing

I need to find another way
cause I’ve had about enough of today
maybe I’ll just float away
I think I’ll live tomorrow so I don’t have to live today

(Verse 2)
I remember back in the day when the times were easy
rollin ‘round town lookin for the next good feelin
full of aspirations– keep my dreams to the ceiling
tell my momma that I’m gonna be a star
With my name up in lights, shining across the night
face up on the billboard 20 stories high
dreaming of the possibilities makes me feel so alive
but that’s all tomorrow– today ain’t so hot

Ten years disappeared
when I woke up they were gone, and in their place
was the memory that said you can’t trade now for all that’s to be
or else you ain’t really livin at all, all

If you ain't livin for the moment you ain't really livin
Track Name: Someday
Someday, a good thing gonna come my way
Someday, my innocence was lost but I’ll find it again
Someday, walkin through the valley in the shadow of pain
Someday, I’m gonna find my way back home

(Verse 1)
I’m walkin down the road with with my trusted ole gun
I got my finger on the trigger, I’m about to pull it for fun
I said livin this life ain’t easy

His finger points to freedom, mine points to death
I ask him for the secret and he just nodded his head and said
You just got to take it easy

I got an angel singin on my shoulder, the devil stuck in my side
the only way to soothe the burn is her sweet lullabies
she said the pain is just here to teach us

So feel the love, feel the hate, when you get to the root
it’s all the same Divine Game
it just depends on how you see it

(Verse 2)
Another day, another dollar that I’m behind
another day’s another sentence in the cage of my mind
I said there’s gotta be a better way to see things

Next thing I know I’m hearin voices, I think I’m trippin again
but then the voices turned into the ink that flows through my pen
they said all you gotta do is release it all

(Verse 3)
She said you’re a good man
I said that’s all I ever wanted to be
but why’s it so hard

People come and say
sir how you doin today
but why’s it so hard to say fine

Somedays people come and say
how you doin today
I say I’m alive
Track Name: Where We're Going
(Verse 1)
Where we’re going the song I’m singing keeps going
til we’ve found love
Where we’re going clouded vistas turn golden
their tears become love
And all of them changes remind us to face it
the time has come

(Verse 2)
Where we’re going our children fall asleep knowin
that they are not alone
And that our spirit keeps growin, like a tree we keep reachin
to heed freedom’s call
And nothin’s all that important, yet underneath each moment
we can find God
And so we find out that when we slow down
we know who we are

(Verse 3)
Where we’re going where we been become tokens
of where we come from
And where we’re going once again cause we know that
the day will surely come
When we find what we’ve been looking for all the
time we’ve been lost

But what’s the cost of all this silliness?
Do it this way— no, it goes like this
The things we trade just to be right

(Verse 4)
Where we’re going mouths are fed when they open
the streets are no one’s home
Where we’re going rules are made to be broken anytime they don’t
have our best interest in mind

What I find to be reality is less concrete and more a dream
with all the playfulness of a child
So if I fall asleep before we meet promise me just this one thing:
you’ll remind me where I was going
where I’m going
Track Name: The Golden Cage
(Verse 1)
Now I lay me down to sleep
I pray to the lord my dreams to keep
Wish upon a star so bright
I wish that I would, I hope that I might

Let me out
Let me out of this gold colored cage
Let me out before I suffocate
Let me out of this million mile maze
Let me out before I go insane

(Verse 2)
Surfing electronic waves
Pretty little thing in my bed with me
Chocolate caramel pecan delight
I can’t find mine, can I bum a light?
I’m alone in the finest cage my time can buy

(Verse 3)
The sun’s almost down, another day gone
The tide’s creepin in to take what must go
The flowers all know it’s time to bloom
Spring is here now but a cold winter looms
All the leaves on the trees will be silent soon
Are you waitin on me or am I waitin on you?
Track Name: Without You
(Verse 1)
Though I try to find comfort in my life without you
I always seem to sleepwalk through a dream without you
Over and over I try to appreciate the things that you do
run circles around myself trying to find my own self without you
I can’t picture myself without you

(Verse 2)
Still I try to find comfort in my life without you
I always seem to be sleepwalking through a dream without you
Over and over again I stumble and try to pretend that I know
everything about me and everything about you
but the song that replays each and every day is brand new
I can’t picture myself without you

I've peaked-
but not on paper
though i feel just as high
The cloud in the sky hovers-
Bitter white blankets the masses of specs below
Do they know??
Hard to say in this rugged way as
shows its gleaming face once more
peaking through the nothingness
How many others chose this path of uncertainty?

Still I try to find comfort in my life without you
Track Name: It's Alright
(Verse 1)
Yeah I was lost, somehow blown off course
Far from home without a guiding star
But still it’s alright

I was broke down, so damn confused
Painter of landscapes without a view
But still it’s alright

Then in came the rain, night swallowed the day
Noah’s Ark wouldn’t have helped a thing
But still it’s alright

Then out came the sun, like a heaven-white dove
That sang a song that needed to be sung
She said it’s alright

(Chorus 1)
It’s alright

I was a witness when insanity opened a business
And set up shop on my front lawn
But still it’s alright

Then I trailed behind me, selling itself at a loss
From Philadelphia clear to California
But still it’s alright

I tried to eat or sleep or fuck away
My tendency to let loneliness lay with me
All day and night

I was consumed by a two-dimensional view
Of how I was perceived through the eyes
Of you—and you—and you

(Verse 3)
I closed my eyes, envisioning what would be
If we transmuted fear into belief
And it was alright

I had visions of Gandhi and Martin Luther King
I finally understood what Jesus was saying
He said, “It’s alright.”

Then all the tortured, bruised and battered souls
Appeared in the clouds as if to let me know
They were alright

Saying in spite of confusion, in spite of the pain
Our dearly beloved have gathered here today to sing
“It’s alright!”

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