Big Small Town

by Urban Blight Players

/
  • Streaming + Download

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.

    Buy the CD or download the whole album and get the bonus track, Time and Temperature.

      $7 USD  or more

     

  • Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    Fully designed jewel case featuring South St. Louis in all its glory and a hot picture of the band. Bill is a graphic designer and would never let you down in the graphics department.

    Includes unlimited streaming of Big Small Town via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    ships out within 2 days

      $10 USD or more 

     

1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
03:45
6.
7.
8.
9.
03:45
10.
11.
04:48

about

The one and only album by St. Louis pop-rockers, Urban Blight Players, Big Small Town featured songs by Bill Michalski (vocals, guitar) backed up by the crack rhythm section of Benjy Portnoy (drums) and Wally Schwartz (bass) joined by Trung Tran on backing vocals.

credits

released December 5, 2004

Produced by Bill Michalski
Engineered and mastered by Jack Petracek at Smith-Lee Studios, Maplewood, MO: June-September 2004

tags

license

all rights reserved

about

Bill Michalski Saint Louis, Missouri

St. Louis, MO musician Bill Michalski combines an acoustic singer-songwriter style with the energy and color of new wave pop. Michalski's lyrics feature a sometimes nostalgic, often wry view on WHAT WE DO AROUND HERE in day-to-day life. Michalski has been recording and performing music since his high school days in 1993. WHAT WE DO AROUND HERE is his first release since 2011. ... more

contact / help

Contact Bill Michalski

Streaming and
Download help

Shipping and returns

Track Name: Saturday Mornings
Saturday morning
The radio, the car wash
Saturday morning
The radio, the Cards game
And it looks like I might be getting
My soccer legs back
I might be getting them back
I get the grows again
When I’m sitting around thinking
Tired of the same exit on the highway

Like the houses built in rows
You’re like part of the family
You’re like part of the family
She told me

Saturday evening
Florescent eyes, hopes high
Saturday evening
Looking for love like always
When it feels like I might be getting
My softball arm back
(He might be getting his softball arm back)
I might be getting it back
I get the glows again
When I’m sitting around thinking
Thinking about living in your house

CHORUS

Are we more like Saturday morning…
Than Saturday night?
Track Name: Oakville to Affton
From Oakville to Affton
The girls are wearing shorts again
And their legs are shiny white in the sun
Kids are in the park again
Where leaves are turning green and then
We drive around the town with the windows down

Sometimes we intuit life so well
It makes me want to take my silly plans
And send them all to hell
But I wish I had better stories to tell
(Sitting on a dirty couch)
Just you and me and the thought that things
Might get better

The girl in the car behind me
She’s really rocking out
And maybe she’s watching me watching her
In her rear-view mirror
I don’t recognize the bands on the bumper of her car
But I’m sure if we’d get together
We could figure it out

CHORUS

From Oakville to Affton
Kids in pickup trucks are laughing
And the girls are smiling brighter, louder still
If there’s one thing I could intuit
If I could see right through it
I’m never ever gonna get my fill

CHORUS
Track Name: My Worried Look
Don’t misunderstand my worried look
It’s something I’ve had since I was a kid
When my principal asked what’s wrong
And I said that’s just the way I look
When my mind wanders away
But I’m actually okay…
You’ll just have to trust me

Don’t misunderstand my smiling face
It’s something I’ve had since I was a kid
When my mother would get embarrassed
She’d flash that phony grin
And I picked it up along the way
But I’m not actually okay…
You’ll just have to trust me

I'm the happiest person generally
That you'll ever see
I'm the happiest person generally
That you'll ever see

Don’t misunderstand my worried look
It’s something I’ve had since I was a kid
When my lover asked what’s wrong
And I said that’s just the way I look
When my mind wanders away
But baby, I’m really okay…
You’ll just have to trust me
Track Name: Maid of Honor
Maid of honor
Of a small house
Maid of honor
With the big sad eyes
I used to sing about those big eyes
Now they look so sad
I don’t know what goes here
Something’s gotta happen in this life
Something’s gotta happen here

I’m tired of this house
The maid of honor says
I’m closing all these books
The loved ones, what they said
Keeps me constantly on guard

Framed and airbrushed
On the mantle
A happy history
In past tense time
I used to sing about those good old times
But now they look so sad
I don’t know what goes here
Something’s gotta happen in this life
Something’s gotta happen here

CHORUS
Track Name: Road Trip
I’m driving down highway 55
My straw’s sucking dry in a cup of ice
I wish the world could always be so nice
Every guy needs some sun and space
Junk food and a slower pace
To get away from the carbon paper days
Days… days

Ahhh

Gonna see our friends we sure used to be close
Now miles of farm keep us apart
It was hard
We had to make new starts
But we got Giants in the tape deck
And the sky is chalky white
I can’t think of nothing better than seeing me old friends tonight
Tonight… tonight

CHORUS

That star burnt out when the Romans fell
When Caesar was squelched by the infidel
You can read that in the blue blanket sky
On this hooded sweatshirt night
And I think to myself it is amazing
That our collections of atomic particles
Found their way through time and space
To this chilly night and this same place

CHORUS

I’m driving down highway 55
My straw’s sucking dry in a cup of ice
I wish the world could always be so nice
Track Name: Big Boys and Big Girls
Well it’s been quite a while
Since we really talked
I guess it could be maybe a year or two
And I know you’re so busy
I know you’re so popular
I know you’re wrapped up in a life that isn’t mine

You were the pitter-patter raining
A train that’s not coming
You were a candle when the power’s out
You were a lazy Sunday evening
A worry in the night
You are the worry that takes the little worries away

And after all this time
I worry
And after all this time
I’m tired
And after all this time
I miss you
Thought I’d have figured it out by now

I’d like to think it isn’t certain
You’d pull back the curtain
And show me the old friend that you really are
But now we’re all big boys
We’re all big girls
Old enough to figure out our own ways in this world

You were a beanbag chair
The same curly hair
A Saturday morning sleeping late
You were a radio blaring a silly summer song
Thinking about that summertime all night long

And after all this time
I worry
And after all this time
I’m tired
And after all this time
I miss you
But you’re not coming back anymore
Track Name: Pennies In The Water
I want you like pennies in the water
Tossed myself
A sweaty start
Like a bike ride through the deep dark suburbs
I’m turning red
Red of a heart

'Introduce you to all of my friends
She’s such a pretty girl
Hope the attention tastes sweet
Like chocolate vanilla swirl
And a sweet sweet lip in my mouth
A song in my head

CHORUS

Putting my hands on your head
Fingers through scarlet hair
Tangling passenger seat
Seatbelts and glasses off
The lights of a passing car distract me
I turn my head

CHORUS

Girl in the passenger seat
Girl with the tender foot
Didn’t realize the pain you were in
Sure didn’t mean to be a jerk
So I let your red balloon go
I watched float away

I want you like pennies in the water
Tossed myself
A sweaty start
Like a streetlight through
The deep dark winter
I’m covering up
Quilt of a heart
Track Name: Sensitive Folk Singer
Sensitive folk singer
You always look so serious
Has life kicked you down
‘Cause you’re so different and proud?

Sensitive folk singer
You always look so passionate
Except when you miss a chord
And you furrow your brow

So much feminine sensitivity
But analytical like a man
You’re gonna kill yourself thinking so hard

Sensitive folk singer
Doing “Blood and Fire”
Now she’s closing her eyes
‘Cause she’s feeling the song

She’s not a really great singer
Oh, but she’s trying hard
To be honest with you
‘Cause that’s the most important thing to do

So much feminine sensitivity
She will communicate if she can
Hope she doesn’t kill herself thinking so hard

Sensitive folk singer
She’s really got me with this one
About falling in love
But you’re scared because…

What a pretty girl singing
Oh, she looks so smart
And not obsessed with that bullshit

All those other girls with the big chests
But in the brain not big at all
With their big boyfriends smiling so hard

Sensitive folk singer
She’s probably a lesbian
But still “I’m calling you, calling you
From ten thousand miles away
Won’t you wet my fire with your love today.”*

From “Blood and Fire” by Amy Ray, Indigo Girls
Track Name: Shantytowner
It’s a long long way from my house
To find me a new home
But in the heat and the sun and the cold and the rain
It’s been a year and I’m back again
Some people know me
Most people don’t
But if you’ve got a smile and it’s been a long while
Then you’ll be welcome here

We all love the music
The acoustic guitar strum
But the sun’s so bright today
Better get under the tent
Better get out of the way
And love becomes music
It’s in the air
In the quiet steady conversation everywhere

I’m a shantytowner
No longer a loner
I’m a shantytowner
No longer a loner

We’ve all got grown-up jobs now
Some with and without heart
Some people got their own kids
Hell, I wouldn’t know where to start
Then I see you walking in
I think I’ve seen you somewhere before
Well sit right down
There’s no one around
Let’s talk though we’ve never talked before
And we’re getting hungry
Let’s go into town
You know the everyday things
Are so much more fun with someone cool around

CHORUS

Well I drove away for some quiet days
In the July haze
Some quiet days

It’s been a long long way from my house
To find me a new home
But in the heat and the sun and the cold and the rain
In a year I’ll be back again
‘Cause you are my family
If just for a few days
Then it’s back in the car
And right back home for the everyday ways

CHORUS

Well I drove away for some quiet days
In the July haze
Some quiet days
Well, I’m playing my guitar
Out underneath the stars
In the July haze
Some quiet days
Track Name: Baby Lives On The South Side
(Suddenly)
A problem where there wasn’t one before
(Not exactly a problem)
But a little bitty baby inside her
(Honestly)
It’s not the way that they wanted it to go
But can you say that’s much different from the way life usually goes?

Suddenly she’s sleeping warm next to me
I wonder who she is
Why does she think that she knows me?

My baby lives on the south side
(On the first floor)
Of a two-story red-brick kind of life
I got a feeling you and me would be so right
(Suddenly)
She’s liking me and whoa things are right
(My classes are going to shit tomorrow)
‘Cause we’re staying up all night
(Now that dream)
Has become the day to day
What do I do when I look at her and I ain’t got nothing to say?

Driving all night on the interstate with her
With just her quiet love sleeping next to me

CHORUS

I buzz my girl in the lobby
(She’s coming down)
I sure don’t know what we’re doing tonight
(We’ll figure something out)
I’ve got a feeling you and me would be so right

Suddenly a tale of two young kids
He was enthralled by her
She knew all the same bands
Seems everything he thought vague and abstract
Well, she could understand

He would have rather sat and listened to her talk
Than getting in on with some other girl

CHORUS

My baby sleeps on the right side
(Our love’s so much less fun)
My baby wakes up so early
(Don’t mean our love is done)
I’m still working
You and me will be so right
Track Name: Urban Blight
Urban
White flight
Everybody’s moving out to St. Charles
I guess it’s just the St. Louis way
We move farther and farther out each day

Urban sprawl
Nothing at all
We just want another shopping mall
Hey son don’t you curse
We need another Bath and Body Works

Mr. Yuppie and me in his S.U.V.
Four wheeling down 270
From his way you’d better get the hell out
He was the first in his Catholic grade school class
To sell out to…

CHORUS

You don’t have to dial 1 before 636
Crossing the Missouri River Styx
Do you know where I can find a Walgreens store
There’s one on every block

But we could sure use more
Prescription ready for Mr. Michael-ski
So I just got back from North County
Where they have ‘bout 57 municipalities (really, I counted)
Have you been to Bellfontaine Neighbors…
Bel-Nor, Bel-Ridge, or Bel-Acres?

CHORUS

Macaroni Grill or the P.F. Chang’s
Chain restaurants are where the Yuppies hang
For about twenty bucks a platter
But when you’re a neurosurgeon from Ladue
Hell, it doesn’t matter

CUSTOMER: I’ll have the Tuscan Tortilla Salad

WAITER: Is that all?

CUSTOMER: Yes, thank you

St. Louis Centre was great
When Vince Coleman was great
Yes, a seven-story Famous-Barr right up the street
It’s still there if you want to go shopping
You can spend all day
But it won’t be hopping

Now, St. Louis Mills
There’s the mall to beat
Out where 270 and 370 meet
Shop til’ you drop at stores galore
‘Cause St. Louis Centre ain’t the shit no more

CHORUS

So let me take ya’ll now
To downtown
There’s no urban blight
It’s urban renewal around!
Just check out the Washington Avenue sights:
Brand new sidewalks and runway lights

Think of the brand new things to come
Luxury lofts and a new Busch Stadium
But remember folks though it might look pretty
It takes more than bricks and mortar to build a city

That’s why I’m talking about the…

CHORUS

St. Louey!

Everybody!