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...For All The Seasons Of Your Mind
...For All The Seasons Of Your Mind

1968

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This album is available as part of the
Society's Child: The Verve Recordings
CD Compilation

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The Basics: Release date: October 1967; producer: George "Shadow" Morton; engineer: Joe Vennerie; recorded at Mira Sound, New York; photography: Merka.

Personnel: Musicians: Vinnie Bell, Artie Butler, George Devens, Sal de Troio, Bobby Gregg, Janis Ian, Joe Mack, Miko. Vocalists: Janis Ian.

Inside Scoop: Janis Ian followed up her self-titled debut with the appropriately trippy ...For All The Seasons Of Your Mind (1968). Her no-nonsensical approach and bellicose lyrical style was poignantly defined by the widely banned single "Society's Child," which dealt with interracial relationships. This refreshing candour was also featured on a number of other edgy sides from her previous disc such as the teenage hooker blues that Ian titled "Pro-Girl" or the socially and sexually combative "Too Old To Go 'Way Little Girl". On this disc, the singer/songwriter allows for a bit of psychedelic poetry to colour her commentaries. Again, she is accompanied by studio musicians whom Ian gives full and respective credit for their contributions -- a rarity for many solo artists in the late '60s. The band provide Ian with a variety of sonic pallets ranging from the sitar twang of the opening title track to the baroque orchestration that graces the instrumental introduction of "Insanity Comes Quietly To The Structured Mind." There are several introspective and more traditional folk tunes including the stark "There Are Times", which foreshadows Laura Nyro's "New York Tendaberry" and the scathing observational statement on the status of the aged on "Shady Acres." The quiet and personal "Evening Star" hearkens toward Ian's future jazz-inspired works. She maintains a delicate command of the stirring and moody piano inflections that trickle all around her vocals in a sort of improvisational dance. The track also has the maturity of a pop music standard from the likes of Gershwin or Cahn. Ian slightly bends the piano voicings to replicate her own soulful intonations. One of the hidden gems on the LP is the more contemporary minor chord masterpiece "Bahimsa." The performance evokes a distinct European flavour that might suggest the Incredible String Band or Pentangle. These more sombre and developed compositions make for somewhat schizophrenic bedfellows beside the funky electric soul of the derisive "Honey D'ya Think" or the awkward coming of age brass band waltz "And I Did Ma". - Lindsay Planer / All Music Guide

Lyrics

A Song For All The Seasons Of Your Mind

Janis Ian

Waterfalls cascading down a summer wind of golden brown
Leaves are flying in the air and in the sky your tangled hair
Petals wear on moonlit nights, they're all the same on sunbeam lights
Watch the sky as it turns blue. Night is slow to rush on you
A song for all the seasons of your mind

Avalanches burying and all the doctors hurrying
Mental institutions and the pain of retribution
All the muddy ponds and dirty sewers
feed your mind upon a skewer
Put you up and pull you down. Rusty nails turn fingers brown
A song for all the seasons of your mind

Laughter flows among the trees. A golden green hilarity
Your eyes are aching from the sun and though the evening's just begun,
you don't know why you're laughing so. There is no cause for it to show
but just the same, fall to the floor of all the good times you recall
A song for all the seasons of your mind

Running through a blackened dream, waken with a nightmare scream
See your clothing come alive. Earthquakes cause your mind to slide
Try to find where peace is gone.
Like turning live a rubber swan
Floating down an endless stream, forgetting mental poverty
A song for all the seasons of your mind

Happiness at loving one. Your game of grace for sad eyed swans
and quietly beneath the tree, loving all his mystery
The grass is still, it comes alive. Beneath your naked foot it writhes
Feel the life within you grow like beauty on a newborn rose
A song for all the reasons of your mind

Emptiness at losing him. The memory of all you've been
The grass is sharp to walk upon, the petals black, the trees are gone
Like frightened dogs before the war,
you dream you search for just one more
As one becomes another one, you wonder where the day has gone
A song for all the seasons of your mind

On the silent evening breeze, knowledge comes so quietly
Clear blue water from above, an avalanche can teach you love
The leaves that swirl about your eyes may wear an unforeseen disguise
But when your clothing comes alive, you can be sure it's you inside
A song for all the seasons of your mind

© Taosongs Two. All rights reserved; international copyright secured.

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And I Did Ma

Janis Ian

My mother, she told me to stay away from boys
And I did Ma, and I did Ma
"You can enjoy yourself home with your toys"
And I did Ma, and I did

Ah, but I was lonely
Never had a boyfriend
I was lonely, oh so lonely
And then I found out
toys were different from men
There's a difference, yes there is... Ma

I married young to a man of the plains
I was happy, oh so happy
But as the time passed he brought me only pain
I remembered what my mother had said

"Take out our old deck
of fine playing cards
Choose the best of the lady
Take in your hand
the Queen of the Hearts
and listen to what she will say"

I left my husband and made it back home
I was happy, oh so happy
I have all my toys so I don't feel alone
I'm a good kid, yes I am... Ma

And every night when I say my prayers
I remember what was said by the cards
I followed her warning
and I thank her for being
my mother, the queen of my heart

© Taosongs Two. All rights reserved; international copyright secured.

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Honey D'Ya Think?

Janis Ian

So you want to be an artist
and the only way to do it is to suffer
And you want to be cool
so you fake it 'til you can grow upper
Ah, yes, you've got money in your pants
Why don't you come in from the street and dance?
or are the pleasures of the peasants
too lowly for your glance?

Honey, d'you think you've got a right to sing the blues
because you live in the street and have no shoes?
You choose, you lose, and it don't give you
the right to sing the blues

You want to be cool
You wear your shades across your face, you never smile
Anybody seeing you
would think that you have paid your dues, and now you're retired
You're all against the Viet Nam war, you make it plain
You go to all the marches in an ecstasy of pain
but you couldn't spare a quarter for a blind man on the corner
standing there in the rain

Honey, d'you think you've got a right to sing the blues
because you live in the street and have no shoes?
You choose, you lose, and it don't give you
the right to sing the blues

Yes, you want to be a Negro,
Try to prove that you have soul, but it's all gone
And you want to be a martyr
so you moan about your problems just like old Uncle Tom
Ah, honey, don't you see
Blues is more than just a fabricated mystery
You've got to get out of it to get into it
and then you can sing

Honey, d'you think you've got a right to sing the blues
because you live in the street and have no shoes?
You choose, you lose, and it don't give you
the right to sing the blues

© Taosongs Two. All rights reserved; international copyright secured.

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Bahimsa

Janis Ian

When the lilacs of his eyes
turn to chutes of the assassin
and come hurtling down
When the lilies of his youth
turn fading and brown
When the hourglass of his mind
turns bleeding and bound
and the roses of his dreams
lay scattered upon the ground

When the roses of her lover
have turned to
flowers of the grave
When his caressing lips
have turned from red to grey
When flowers burn,
and only a memory remains
Silver medals turn to dust
and an ashen marker is made

When the wind from Hiroshima
blows ashes into the town
When they slowly sift to form
a blanket on the ground
When the earth turns to a tomb
and no flowers can be found
and the silken mantle he wore
has turned into a shroud

© Taosongs Two. All rights reserved; international copyright secured.

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Queen Merka & Me

Janis Ian

Oh, the pretty little girl, on Easter's day
by a bright center fountain consented to play
Held an Easter star very close to her heart
Stepping back from the fountain
so as not to be harmed by the spray
There she did play
Told her toy rabbit to smile, for a poor man's child
can also be loved by the rain from above
Glistening spray

And the soldiers on leave from the ship Genevieve
with their all-shining buttons and newly-pressed sleeves
Taking pictures that day of the Easter Parade
they stood watching the clowns
who were gathered about pretty girls
Now watching them swirl,
told one another to laugh mainly to forget
all the memories of dead swirling leaves
seen from the ship Genevieve

Nobody sees but Queen Merka and me
and she is sitting beneath a tree
86th Street, 11 pm in the evening tide

And the little girl hippie, the queen of virginity,
says for her lover she has an affinity
Her hair swings with ease, he trips in the breeze,
She comes to the fountain and says,
If you'd please move around,
I should like to sit down
Painting her mind with a flask, readjusting her mask
She's a virgin queen who's done everything
and a bit more

And the great stoned hash eater, the childless wife beater
He walks with his boyfriend on into the spray
Saying "I love you babe,"
Walking down toward the pavement
and locking, embracing, as though to say
"I don't care; I love him more than her."
He makes his way down to the center of town
where a fountain of petals says "You are not metal"
"Your love is not wrong"

Nobody sees but Queen Merka and me
And she is sitting beneath a tree
86th Street, 11 pm in the evening tide

And the dirty old man, he whiles out the day
He's a permanent fixture, a sidewalk display
He's got very strange habits, like making passes
and he smiles with his dentures
as the fountain spray passes his crown
It's all part of the merry-go-round
Thinks of them that's behind, sort of wishing that life
could be a bit more fair, as he's losing his hair
There goes his sex appeal

And what of the fountain? Oh, it overflows
drowning all the people in their best Easter clothes
Laughingly, knowingly, it's unifying
all of the people, assured they were dying
tethered, bound by water together
The city's together at last, but the moment has passed
They all walk away, far from the spray
Going their separate ways

Nobody sees but Queen Merka and me
And she is sitting beneath a tree
86th Street, 11 pm in the evening tide

© Taosongs Two. All rights reserved; international copyright secured.

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There Are Times

Janis Ian

There are times I wish I
could be a little bit stronger
There are times I wish the night
would be a little bit longer, longer
I used to think I could carry the load
Now it seems so many years ago
My time, your time
Time of the mind, mind time,
You can have it

There are days when I'm amazed
that I'm still standing
Keeping my place, I fight through the haze
only by gambling, gambling
When I was younger I thought I was strong
Now I'm still younger but I have not long
My time, your time
Time of the mind
You can have it

There are times, moments when I
didn't really feel like crying
There've been times I knew that I
would do better by sighing
Dying
Sometimes I think it's easy to fall
and then I remember, kid you gotta be tall
My time, your time
You can have it, cause I can't take it

There are times I wish that I
could be a little bit stronger
There are times I wish the night
could be a little bit longer, longer
Sometimes I know it's easy to fall
and then I remember I've gotta be tall
My time, your time
Time of the mind
You can have it cause I don't want it
If you want it you can have it
I can't take it, I'm falling, I'm calling
Please, please, help me
Please help me

© Taosongs Two. All rights reserved; international copyright secured.

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Lonely One

Janis Ian

You get your love from dogs and cats
you've found in the neighborhood,
and animal love is good
You haven't got a girl
You're scared of the world
No, you don't want a lover, you want a mother
Yes, you read all the overground books
You have quite an intellectual look
but are you an artist?
Ae you a book or just a cover?

Lonely One, you make me feel
I'm the only one to know that you're not real
Lonely One, turned down thumbs on the world

So you say you're an artist with a tormented soul
Your heroes have left for the Hollywood Bowl
Sour grapes, come here
You say you never really cared
Don't you see, you're just like him and me
Ah, but you're a pillar of society
and you are good
Do all that Big Brother says you should
All of your friends, they need a boss
Someone to help them onto the cross
Now don'tcha like being somebody's punishment?
It makes you feel needed

Lonely One, you make me feel
I'm the only one to know that you're not real
Lonely One, turned down thumbs on the world

And though you're alone, you say it will pass
You stuff your head with all your grass
It wouldn't be so bad, if that weren't all you had
You've never seen the lady laugh
Lonely One, don't you wish you had
been a four-star general, just like Captain America
You go to bed each night, your arms wrapped 'round a pillow
Dreaming of becoming tomorrow's superhero
Rose-colored glasses - I wish you had them
At least you would see me

Lonely One, you make me feel
I'm the only one to know that you're not real
Lonely One, turned down thumbs on the world

© Taosongs Two. All rights reserved; international copyright secured.

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Sunflakes Fall, Snowrays Call

Janis Ian

It is the winter time of year
A time for all my troubled thought-dreams to come clear
And all the seasons I held dear
seem to have gone and left me 'lone,
with winter only here
Lonely, forever dreaming
My life is teeming with a yearning
I'd like to be learning

And it's summer out on the street
Sunflakes fall, snowrays call
Hey mama, it's me saying "Awwww..."
The policeman walks a most solitary beat

I feel at odds with the summertime
Ice is in my heart and winter's in my mind
I watch the snow upon my blinds
as people walk in shorts and sandals
everywhere outside
Lonely, forever hiding
Caught in the icy hide of winter
Outside it's warm and sunlight glimmers

And it's summer out on the street
Sunflakes fall, snowrays call
Hey mama, it's me saying "Awwww..."
The policeman walks a most solitary beat

Oh, when days are marked by winter's time
Spring and summer counts come racing to my mind
Within my heart the seasons never come inside
At times I hate and curse the world for making winter mine
Lonely, forever dreaming
My life is teemed with a yearning
I'd like to be learning

And it's summer out on the street
Sunflakes fall, the snowrays call
Hey mama, it's me saying "Awwww..."
The policeman walks a most solitary beat

© Taosongs Two. All rights reserved; international copyright secured.

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Evening Star

Janis Ian

All our good times have been had
and there's nothing more to be said
I don't like being trite, but I love you
I love you

When my evening star comes around again
You won't find me sitting where I was when yu first came
When my evening star tells me it's time for a change
The words may change. The song may change
but love will be the same

I grow tired burning
tomorrow's fires in
yesterday's flame

Good times Bad times
Think of all our good times
measured with the bad times

When my evening star comes around to say
Once upon you had someone
Gone now

The light goes out
and the stage is set
Stand by me anyway
I need a lover who
won't want to bother with
yesterday's flame

Good times Bad times
Think of all our good times
measured with the bad times

All our good times have been had
and there's nothin' more to be said
I don't like being trite, but I loved you
And I love you
Yes I do
I loved you,
and I love you

© Taosongs Two. All rights reserved; international copyright secured.

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Shady Acres

Janis Ian

I think of who's to blame
and I bow my head in shame...

So you've grown tired of your parents always hanging around
They spoil your children, and having grandparents is out
Yes, and they raised you well, but you wished to hell they'd go away
So you wouldn't have to pay for their food
Forget all the years when they paid for you

Send your mother to Shady Acres
Send your father to Shady Acres
We'll take good care of them - you won't be aware of them
Send them to Shady Acres

Well, if one of them's dead, don't worry your head, 'cause we have a matchmaker
They can sit down in affection and stare while watching Green Acres
If you don't want to visit, well, there's no requisite
We have foster sons and daughters to help all our boarders stop feeling blue
Keep the checks coming and we won't bother you

Send your mother to Shady Acres
Send your father to Shady Acres
We'll take good care of them - you won't be aware of them
Send them to Shady Acres

Our rooms are so peaceful. They'll die while they're sleeping
Yes, right in their beds
Now there's no need for worry. We have our own mortuary
And a beautiful cemetery
Yes, we are good people. We care for the feeble
We've devoted our lives to the husbands and wives
who don't want their fathers around to be bothered,
So send them!
We're respectable and tax deductible

Send your mother to Shady Acres
Send your father to Shady Acres
We'll take good care of them
You won't be aware of them
Send them to Shady Acres

The Freudian doctors they tell me - "Have no fear, it's not your fault.
"You're growing up bad 'cause your parents did you wrong"
And I blame it on my parents, and the teachers in the schools
'Til I remember once upon a time, they had parents too

I think of who's to blame
And I bow my head in shame

© Taosongs Two. All rights reserved; international copyright secured.

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Insanity Comes Quietly To The Structured Mind

Janis Ian

She sits on a window still. Looking down, it's quite a thrill
Imagery, imagining what it is like to be dead
She walks out upon the ledge. Searching for the living end,
She wonders, wondering just what has changed in her head

Looking outward through my pain
Looking through my windowpane
See her face turn into rain

She prepares her face at last. Taking off the piece of glass
Wrapped 'round her eyes
She doesn't cry. She's very young
She's very bright to die

Then so quickly, she stands up. Takes her shoes off in a lump,
She lays them down; lately she has drowned
Checks to see her room is neat. Making sure her clothes are clean,
Dying - death and dirty clothing puts you down

Looking outward through my pain
Looking through my windowpane
See her face turn into rain

Then so quickly she stands up. Crouches low, prepares to jump
Quite properly, pretending she's in gym shooting a basketball
Floating downward through the air. Remembering the state of her hair,
She falls, and nobody hears it at all

Looking outward through my pain
Looking through my windowpane
See her face turn into rain

Yes, dawn coming through the rain, it has washed her mind away
I went ahead and made my bed. Nothing really need be said
But she's dead
You can have it cause I don't want it
If you want it you can have it
I can't take it, I'm falling, I'm calling
Please, please help me, please help me

© Taosongs Two. All rights reserved; international copyright secured.

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Tour Dates

click on any date for full information
click again to close that date

All tour dates updated on September 12, 2017

  • Saturday, April 28th, 2018

    The Birchmere, Alexandria, VA,

    The Birchmere

    Alexandria, VA,

    Phone: 703-549-7500

    Visit the venue's website

    Janis returns to the legendary venue with a show full of new songs and new ideas - one appearance only! See venue closer to the date for more information.

[full tour dates list]

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