Carried by Cold Water

by Alec James

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" It’s beautifully complex in its simplicity while brimming with integrity and honesty. All the tracks were produced and mixed by Willie Scoggins and are well-played on guitar and harmonica with fittingly subdued vocals, supported by minor chords and interesting lyrics of longing and hope." -Illinois Times

All tracks were mixed and produced by Willie Scoggins. Thank you for letting this album be more than I ever thought possible.

On "Winds of the West," Willie Scoggins played bass and my talented brother Cale sang background vocals.

The cover of this album was done by Kelcie Salvo, who used her graphic design talents and artistic taste to turn a quick sketch into the finished cover you see now (she can be reached for graphic design work at

All songs written and performed by Alec James.

Thank you to anyone who purchased, supported, and otherwise enjoyed this independently-released music.


released November 14, 2016


all rights reserved



Alec James Ithaca, New York

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Track Name: Loss Lullaby
What did you say to me that one day,
We were rained on by trees in the Fall?
You would not let me run away,
No I would always be home.
Porcelain skin shone summer again,
Even through the Winter’s cold,
And eyes that gleamed green in the darkest evening,
And as the nights were growing old.
Yes eyes that gleamed green in the darkest evening,
And as I watched them fade down the road.
As I watched them fade down the road.
Track Name: Winds of the West
If you’re still there,
Why do I still feel alone?
In my rear-view mirror,
I watch my eyes turn to stone.
Dirty headlights pave the road I go,
My exhaust pipe breathes a heavy load.
And I can’t sleep,
There are some things only bloodshot eyes can see.
And I left the Midwest,
For a moment I was free.
Drove right through my hometown,
inhaled a hundred thousand walking rain clouds.
You’ll hear from me when I feel like being tied down.

The winds of the West are calling me.
The winds of the West are calling me.
Track Name: The Dam Broke Today
The dam broke today,
And the waves carried you away,
To a far, unmarked town.
As the sea swallowed the trees,
You turned and looked at me,
And said “I’m gonna let go now.”

You fell down and shivered,
Our seashore town is just a river.
Oh I’ve got no one now.
So I built a boat,
And set sail on the water road,
And left the town to drown.
But no map would tell the truth,
So I just stood and screamed for you,
But I never heard a sound.
The Sun fell down and shivered.
Reflections fail on the river.
Oh I’ve got no one now.
Oh I’ve got no one now.
Track Name: Let Summer Come
I woke up in November,
An early death blew through my hair.
The last thing I remember,
Was whispering into your ear,
“Let Summer come,
Because this cold, dead freeze is killing me.
Got to escape this city,
It’s drowning.”
I held my breath, I played, I prayed, I paid my share.
The Sun fell through the clouds like,
The strands of your blonde hair,
Well I might be lost.
What am I doing here?
I stretch out my arms,
To let down your hair,
“Summer’s here.”
I lost my timepiece in the Rocky Mountain breeze,
I never know which way I’m going.
And I’m more lost than,
A fly in your mother’s kitchen,
But I know I’m here.
Yeah, I know I’m here.
When the fog declines,
And hides my lonesome way,
I hope you know which way I’m going.
Am I a poltergeist that haunts your memory?
Cause you’re haunting mine.
Yeah you’re haunting mine.
Track Name: Late Tired Whisper Song
My ghost,
Watches my body decompose,
And bleed out into this microphone,
And my soul,
Well I left it down this road,
In a small town a little closer to home.
Oh you’re wrong,
I’m so far from standing strong,
But the winds I trust to push me on.
Cause I’ve had enough,
Got to stop letting go of love,
And hold on,
Before I just drift off.
Cause you’re not strong,
You’re not strong for giving up,
Oh common,
She is what you want.
Well Love, it haunts.
And happiness, it taunts.
And I’m busy,
Chasing what they flaunt.
I lost,
The first bet I placed on you,
Kept tossing quarters,
Trying to win back what I threw.
Now wishing well,
Ripples stretch through crystal blue,
Shake the oceans,
And storms I’m sailing through.
The winds roar,
I reach out for the shore,
Emptied my pockets,
But I still needed more,
Oh I still needed more.
Track Name: Come All Ye Kings
Come all ye kings in your garnish and gowns,
Come all ye kings in your jewels and crowns,
Rise from the warmth of the cribs where you lay,
That sit up on top of the worlds that you made.
Cause I’ve seen your battles, your crusades, your wars,
I’ve seen you force people to wielding your swords,
I’ve seen your men still and prepared for defeat,
They’re laying their rifles down at their feet.
I’ve seen you build ships for yourselves in the flood,
I’ve seen you eat stone and drink innocent blood,
I’ve seen you kneel down and pretending to pray,
Then when we drown you’re turning the other way.
Your killers, your thieves, your opponents, your jailed,
Your merchants, your serfs, your peasants, your failed,
Your own mothers and daughters and fathers and sons,
You’re outnumbered a million to one.
Come all ye kings that fear near and far,
That hide in the shadows, we know where you are,
We march with the veil of the deepest dark night,
To be at your gate in the pale morning light.
Track Name: Warmer Skies
As the birds flew down,
To the warmth of the South,
You migrated to a town,
Where the Sun takes longer to go down.
Why do you leave so indifferently?
Let go of me,
Let me fly free.
Cause I need to go,
To a place where,
The Sun will always show.
Trees stand silent with,
No birds to sing,
As I wait for,
Your return next spring.
Why do you leave so indifferently?
Track Name: Swales
Can you see your brothers and sisters cry?
Things have changed, sure,
But then now so have I.
How much longer until their tears can dry,
Or will you let them die with swales ‘neath their eyes?
She said she needed to fly like the eagle soars,
Long blonde hair falling down onto the floor.
For the ailment of sadness I’m told that love is the cure.
That I once did believe,
But now I am no longer sure.
An empty soul will search for more,
And a wild heart will run for sure.
How much longer until my tears can dry?
Or will you let me die with swales ‘neath my eye?
Track Name: Where the Winds Meet
Well does it really take a well-trained eye?
She threw a lasso around your neck,
And a noose ‘round mine.
Can you settle the score?
You brought a single rose,
To the one I was waiting for.
Chivalry is dead and I can’t stand it,
But I can’t stand at all.
I got lost somewhere and can’t find my way,
To the place I was.
But it was you who told me through a wooden door,
When I was just a boy getting dressed,
That I must untie the mast and set my sail,
And the wind would do the rest.
But look where that got me,
Just stranded where the winds meet.
And can you settle the score?
You brought a single rose,
To the one I was waiting for.
Track Name: Cold River, Wide River
The river’s cold and the river’s wide,
And we were not prepared.
You heard my calls from the other side,
Hung in crystal air.
And though I know beyond this snow,
There is a Spring.
And though I know the winds will blow,
Beneath your wing,
And carry you away.
The snow came late but the snow came hard,
And the whole town’s off-guard,
And April was just the image on,
Generic greeting cards.
And though I know the night will slow,
I can’t find my strength.
And though I know the Sun will show,
I can’t face my pain.
I’m standing at the banks,
Ready to jump I think,
But I carry so much weight,
That I know for sure I’d sink,
Without you to carry me.
Track Name: Down the River
When you come,
When you come looking for me,
Down the river’s where I’ll be.
Down the river you’ll find a lady,
Eyes of pearl and tears of stone,
Arms like vine and thighs of Poison Ivy,
And I can’t have her, no.
Now I,
I just need to go.
When she comes,
When she comes asking for me,
Down the river’s where I’ll be.
Down the river the last standing tree,
Bends down sickly and low,
The winds blow tears of leaves al down beneath,
The sadness of my mother uncontrolled,
Now I,
I just need to go.
When my mother comes calling for me,
Down the river’s where I’ll be.
Down the river is one watchful King.
He sits on hills of soulless gold.
Always caught in a tight periphery,
He’s lost his place in tales of old lore.
Now I,
I just need to go.
When he comes,
When he comes scouring for me,
Down the river’s where I’ll be.
Down the river his heavy army,
Melts the past and digests the road.
Heads of rust and hearts of gasoline,
The breath weighs heavy with the common cold.
Now I,
I just need to go.
When they come,
When they start coming for me,
Down the river’s where I’ll be.
Down the river a wild coyote,
Howls among the stars, dark skies of coal.
To the hills he runs on with a warning:
“I’ll tell you once then I’ll say ‘you were told.’
Now I,
I just need to go.”
When you come,
When you come following me,
Down the river’s where I’ll be.
Down the river time’s lost poetry,
Piles among the mud, the trail ran cold,
And one day soon you’ll wander right into me,
Shriveled and defeated, hung down and old.
Now I,
I just need to go.
Track Name: Now I'm Gone
Here they leave a wild soul to wander,
Yellow seas will rock him in his sleep.
Here they leave a wild prize to squander,
An ease to touch, impossible to keep.
Now I’m gone,
Now I’m going home.
Here they leave a quiet land to conquer,
Narrow skies, arms are reaching wide.
Here they leave a stainless crown to launder,
Yell the crows, weeps the untamed eye.
Now I’m gone,
Now I’m going home.

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