Find Your Way Home

by Wendell Kimbrough

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A folk album, built around acoustic guitars and a deep love for the soul grooves of Motown. I am still proud of the songs on this album. Mostly made in a small bedroom in Northeast Washington, DC, with a $75 audio interface, the production side of the project stays sparse and intimate. But the songs include some of what continue to be my most popular: Trees of the Field, The Ballad of Freida the Goose, and Sweet Virginia.


released February 6, 2009

Produced and recorded by Wendell Kimbrough at home
Drums recorded at Osprey Point & Pollock’s House
Additional engineering and wise counsel: Adam Johnston
Mixed by Eric Tate in New Haven, Connecticut
Mastered by Alex McCollough at Yes Master
Visual Art and Design by Caroline Kimbrough

All songs written by Wendell Kimbrough
© 2009 Wendell Kimbrough Music

This album features contributions from some fantastic musicians: Brian Pollock (drums, bass, vocals), Clay Morrison (fiddle), Sarah Imboden (vocals), Daniel Hudspeth (electric guitar on come back home), Will Weir (bass on Kite), Paul Hurley (trumpets). All other instruments and unaccounted for sounds by Wendell (guitars, vocals, accordion, keyboards, samples).

Thanks: to my housemates—Daniel, Chris, John, and Clay, the Rez/Advent community, TFA friends, and to those who gave me gifts—Randy and Ruth Kimbrough, Sandra McCoy, Brian Pollock, KD Norman, Beth Hailey, Daniel McNair, Mary Catherine Stephens, Caleb McNair, Rosalyn Duval, Megan Porter, Kelley Alford, Courtney Pladsen, Rebekah Hanson, and Daniel Stenberg—this is my gift back to you; also, St. Stephens AME Church in Unionville, MD, Juliet Main @ Ebenezers, and Music City Instruments, in Magee, MS for giving me a chance.



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Wendell Kimbrough Fairhope, Alabama

Wendell Kimbrough is a songwriter and worship leader in southern Alabama who believes church music should simply be good music that forms us as we sing it together. Drawing on the sounds of American folk and soul music, , Wendell writes scripturally-rich songs with singable, memorable melodies. His music is embraced by churches across the country, young and old, praise bands and choral groups. ... more

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Track Name: Long Hard Road
Long Hard Road
© Wendell Kimbrough, 2008.

There’s a long hard road ahead of me
Full of twists and turns in places I can’t see
But if I’m to reach the valley where the grass is growing green
There’s a long hard road ahead of me

I am lying in a place where I can’t sleep
Every way I turn my body, I’m still beat
And the longer that I stay here, the more I know I need
To take the long hard road ahead of me

I have looked out for a path that I might find
Just an easy way to walk and change my mind
But the way from which I waver is the only path I see
There’s a long hard road ahead of me

There’s a pretty girl waiting for me there
She’s a jewel in a crown that any king would want to wear
But she’s locked up in a tower by some hands that I can’t see
There’s a long hard road ahead of me

There’s a destination worth the weary way
Where the one I love will look at me and say
"Thank you for the time you spent fighting to be free
On the long hard road, you took the long hard road
And you made it to the place you want to be."
Track Name: Christmas Eve
Christmas Eve
©2006 Wendell Kimbrough

Once again it’s Christmas Eve
And I know you
You’ve had something up your sleeve
For the last three years, you have left me cold

‘Twas not so long ago
When I was old
And I was trying to hold to you
But you would not let me, I did not know

Now, now I feel so young
And if I’m free, this is all I need
You, you can slip away
And I will stay, I will celebrate

Me, me I’m not alone
I’m with friends
I’m not wandering far,
Far away from home, away from home

Here, here the walls are strong
And you know me, you know I may be wrong
But I, I feel like I have died
And when I did, I learned to be alive
When, when the dark is close
Now I know, I can wink and smile
Near, oh so near, to my home

Once again it’s Christmas Eve
And I know you
You’ve got something up your sleeve
But you can slip away
And I will stay; I will celebrate
Near, oh so near, to my home
Track Name: It Was Worth Asking
It Was Worth Asking
©2007 Wendell Kimbrough

Well, I called you up one hopeful summer day
And I started smilin’ when I heard you were not engaged
And I might have bought my ticket with too much haste
But you said you’d like to see me if I came

I was a bit surprised when you introduced your man
But it all made sense as I reached out to shake his hand
We were casualties in the game that no one wins
It’s called “you’re so cute that guys can’t be ‘just friends.’”

From the time that my plane left Baltimore
‘Til I showed up smiling at your front door
You met some guy you hadn’t dated before and you said “yes!”

You said that day you were tired of being at home
And it was time for you to quit playing that southern role
And I told you then for the most part I would agree
But when you change yourself, let me know who you’re going to be

I was trying to figure out if I could follow you
To that great big city you were walking to
But all I could see was losing myself if I tried, if I tried

So when the fall came round you were wearing that old costume
You were writing me a letter telling me it was new
The guy is different, and the place you live has changed
You reinvent yourself, but girl, you are still the same

And I knew that day that I could get in line
With the men trying to pay for your precious time
Taking you out; you’ll be breaking their hearts one by one

Maybe what you need is a guy who can break your spell
Long enough to leave you while he’s living to tell the tale
And I’d be dropping hints if I thought that guy was me
But I keep my distance, ‘cause baby I know I’m weak
Track Name: The Ballad of Freida the Goose
The Ballad of Freida the Goose
©2007 Wendell Kimbrough

Freida, where do you go when the snow falls?
Freida, why don’t you leave when the geese call?
You have landed here in our backyard,
And you never wander very far.

Freida, you pace through the grass with your webbed feet.
Freida, there are no other geese here for you to meet.
They have left here flying north toward home.
Darling Freida, why are you here alone?

Freida, did you have someone you were close to?
Freida, did that someone die or abandon you?
Are you hurt or scared or trying to hide?
Do you need someone who’s on your side?

Freida, all of us know how you feel:
We’ve been hurt, dear, we’ve been hungry in search of a meal;
But does the dirt here really taste so good
That you won’t fly away when you know that you could?

Freida, find your way home;
Freida, find your way home.
It might not be perfect but it’s better than being alone.
Find your way home.
Track Name: Sweet Virginia
Sweet Virginia
©2008 Wendell Kimbrough

Oh sweet Virginia, though I’ve never known
Your trees and fields, they all start telling me of home
Oh gentle transport, on my journeys way
I’d tell the truth to her if I knew what I should say

North Carolina welcomes me
Warm-weathered smiles and familiar food to eat
Oh happy refuge from 80 miles per hour
I’d tell her clearly but it’s not yet in my power

Oh quiet cabin, hurling me through space
Give me a moment to begin to see my place
I need your landscapes for my rural mind
Give me a respite, give me some time

South Carolina, tell me what to say
It’s February but you kiss me like it’s May
Tell easy stories of my college friends
I need your life to breathe into my soul again

Oh early moonrise, don’t come up so fast
Don’t leave me driving to a place I cannot last
Oh brief reunion, whispered words of peace
Follow me northward, tuck me in to sleep
Track Name: Rock and A Hard Place
Never seen such a lovely rock or a prettier hard place
I walked right between them now I'm feeling my mistake
And if I could breathe, I'd laugh this irony away
The harder I try, the less it seems I have to say

What should I do when I can't really stay,
But nothing inside of me's strong enough to run away
My thoughts are idle and my conversations vague
There's plenty to tell, but nothing I can really say
Track Name: Time On My Mind
Time On My Mind
©2007 Wendell Kimbrough

You forgot about the mistake of your life
And the things you packed in the car in the back when you met your wife
It was daylight when you escaped from your past
But it’s different than you’d think, ‘cause your memories did not last

Come on singer do you not remember how
To make these sounds and let me feel the way I want to now?
Married friends are difficult I’ve found
Easy to touch base with, so much harder to expound

Does having sex turn around your head,
So you can’t hear the friends who are not in your bed?
It sounds like I’m putting blame on you, but I’m not.
Cause there’s something strange every time that we talk,
It’s deeper than us and it’s no one’s fault.
So we’re not close, but I know you’re my friend.

Maybe I have lost my mind, or maybe I have too much time.

So I’ve landed here in a life of my own
And it’s only my own no one else has to know what I’m thinking of
I’m a drink poured out on a countertop spread wide
Cause I can’t hold my shape with no one else to draw the lines

Am I really alone in this life of mine?
Is all of this waste really called my time?
Does it matter to you or to anyone else what I do?
In the heat of the day I can hear your voice,
You’re telling me there’s such a thing as choice,
And you’re asking me, who I want to be.

Maybe I have lost my mind, or maybe I have too much time.
Track Name: Kite
©Wendell Kimbrough, 2008

If you needed to live without me,
Then I think I could let you go
Like a kite in that great big open sky
Of a land I do not know
Though you’ve held me like a blanket
Your hands have been open wide
I have felt the freedom to brush against
The heart behind your eyes

You don’t know what I need
I can’t tell what it takes to set you free
Is it me? Is it me? Is it me?

There are so many bars and hinges
Inside my little frame
That could close on you so quickly
And start acting like a cage
When a bird like you is singing
And learning how to fly
It would kill me if I held you
And I kept you from great heights

You don’t know what I need
I can’t tell what it takes to set you free
Is it me? Is it me? Could it be me?
Track Name: Come Back Home
Come back home. This city's cold when you are gone, so come back home.
Track Name: Trees of the Field
The Trees of the Field
© 2008 Wendell Kimbrough

You have broken this old soil
You have torn this skin apart
And the seed that you have planted
Buries naked in the dark

In the springtime of my breathing
You have sheltered me from harm
All you asked was that my seedling
Play into your earthen yarn

If you trimmed off all my branches
They would not complete your pile
There is no way I’m left standing
When you light that final fire

Even small fruit you have nourished
On these branches weighs them down
If I bear it, if I carry
It will sink me to the ground

With the sunset in the background
And this tree placed in the fore
I can just make out what you have
Planted all these years before

In the forests in the orchards
Broken trees cover the ground
When they’ve fallen, when they’re trampled
They have made a clapping sound

And they join with the mountains
And they join with the seas
And they join with the parts that are alive inside of me
And they cry out in longing for the earth that’s yet to be
And they find joy and peace
And they find joy and peace

If I’m bearing when you’re ready
If you come at the right time
Take the fruit that I have carried
Crush it down and make your wine