Ohio – Damien Jurado

Damien Jurado is an American indie rock singer/songwriter from Seattle, Washington.

Urban folk singer/songwriter Damien Jurado quietly built up one of the strongest catalogs on the indie scene, earning high critical praise yet somehow never quite getting his proper due. Nick Drake had a definite impact on much of his work, but Jurado modeled his career on more idiosyncratic, unpredictable figures like Neil Young, Bob Dylan, Lou Reed, or Randy Newman — songwriters who followed their own muse wherever it took them, whether fans and critics agreed or not. His independent-mindedness was born at least in part from the influence of punk, and one of the results was a concern for emotional authenticity that led him to delve into other people’s lives instead of his own. Many of Jurado’s best songs spun concise, literate tales of quiet everyday despair, which often earned him comparisons to short story writer Raymond Carver. But his storytelling bent — not to mention his ambivalence toward confessional material — arose from a stronger grounding in traditional folk than spiritual compatriots like Elliott Smith or Cat Power. And with detours into pop, roots rock, full-fledged electric indie rock, and even found-sound experiments, Jurado ensured that his body of work was impossible to completely pin down.

Ohio

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Out from my window across from the city
I have what’s considered a good view
Two blocks from the subway, three from the fountain
Where I walk to break in new shoes

She stands on the sidewalk just waving at taxis
Like horses in parades in passing
I ask where she’s headed she tells me,
“Ohio, I’ve not seen my mother in ages
It’s been a long time, a real long time.”

Out from my window “How far is Ohio?”
She laughed and pointed out east
She said, “I grew up there with my dear mother
And I haven’t seen her since thirteen.

You see, I was taken while she lay sleeping
By my father’s hired man
We moved to city so far from my family
I haven’t been back there since.
It’s been a long time, a real long time.”

Out from my window please hear me Ohio
Your daughter wants to come home
She longs to be with you to hug you to kiss you
To never leave her alone

And I’ve gotten know her to live with to love her
It’s hard to see her leave
She belongs to her mother and the state of Ohio
I wish she belonged to me

See you sometime, see you sometime

  • Audio from the 1999 album, Rehearsals for Departure:

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About DJ Allyn

DJ Allyn is a burned out radio guy who went on to become a burned out sound engineer for a few Seattle area grunge bands in the 1980s and 1990s. Left the madness of worldwide tours with bands, cleaned up my act and went into the relative sanity of sound engineering for television series. Currently working as the Director of Sound for a television series being filmed in North Vancouver, British Columbia. I am always on the lookout for interesting videos, old music, and fun.

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