Patti Jo’s Country: A Personal Story from a Great Songwriter, David Moss

David Moss playing guitarYears ago I produced and hosted a TV Show called: PATTI JO ROTH’S SONGWRITERS’ SOUNDSTAGE. Artists from as far away as Australia were featured in an interview-style format. This was not about performance. It was about the Songs. Every song was a story and the back-stories were very telling. These were slices of life inspired by personal experiences.

The show was produced at Pacifica Community Television, Channel 8, a public access community television station in Pacifica, California. Guests left with Masters of their shows and instructions on how to get their shows broadcast in their communities. After they left the studio, the shows had lives of their own.

During the three years I produced this show, I interviewed hundreds of songwriters and the show traveled and was viewed on stations from Australia to South America to Alaska. It was the stories that made the show compelling. Successful songs are stories.

The tradition of Country and Folk Music is Story-telling. The stories are in the lyrics – the words. The back-story gives a look beyond the lyrics into the mind of the writer adding context. Songs inspired by personal experience are always the most powerful. The music is the vehicle that carries the story.

This week I am privileged to feature the President of the IDAHO SONGWRITER’S ASSOCIATION, David Moss.

When asked about what inspired this song, he said:

“When I was a boy I used to watch the train pass by across the back field and hear the whistle blow as it crossed Black Cat Road.  I was struggling to find out what had happened to the family I had known as a small boy growing up in Pocatello Idaho.

“You see when I was 5 years old my mother gathered all my belongings, put them in a laundry basket and dropped me off on the neighbors front step.  She turned and walked away and never looked back as I stood there and watched.  I was then put into foster care and eventually adopted by a family in Meridian, Idaho.

“The court records were sealed, so no matter how many times I asked what happened to the family I remembered, the answer was always the same. ‘We’re your new family now, forget about your old family.’  But I couldn’t.  So time continued to pass by and I never forgot my Father and Mother.

“Well as it goes, when I was 29, I got a call from my biological father. There was a reunion, and, in talking with him, I found out that he was on some of those trains on that route that passed by me – most likely as I watched.  That is the Irony of this tale.  What I was so desperately trying to reconnect with was passing right by me.

“I did take a job working at the locomotive renovation shop.  I was changing the wheels off the axles.”

It is the experience of David Moss’ life that provides the authenticity that is moving and captivating. This is a beautiful song played in finger-picking style on acoustic guitar. The vocals are sweet and rich. The presentation is sensitive and gentle. Perfectly balanced harmonies add power in the chorus.

THE TRAIN ROLLED BY

Words and music by David Moss copyright 2017

He watched the train roll by across the field and wondered why it made him feel 

There was something familiar in those rails – The tracks stretched on for miles 

Back to a time when he remembered smiles and better days and his family home.

 

His mother was a child herself, of 15 years when he arrived

A brand-new bundle of baby joy – Life’s struggles – too much for her to handle

When he was 5 years old,  she did the only thing she knew how

Gave him up and walked away – Never lookin’ back with nothing to say

Just go on with her life as if nothing happened. 

 

And as the whistle blows – time only knows what was left behind

A young boy left searchin’ for his home and the love he knew

And family too – never faded from his mind

As time and the train rolled by. As time and that train rolled by.

 

Little did he know, those same tracks connected back to the past that he once knew

His father was an engineer, never knowin’ just how near

The son he left behind truly was – a photo of that same boy in his wallet

Who watched the train pass by as he slowly cried.     

 

And as the whistle blows – time only knows what was left behind

A young boy searchin’ for his home and the love he knew

And family too – never faded from his mind

As time and the train rolled by. As time and that train rolled by.

 

The boy grew up and took a job, workin’ on those same trains.

Rememberin’ how time had robbed his smile,

But changing wheels somehow made him feel better

And then, one day the truth revealed all about that moment that stopped time. 

 

And as the whistle blows – time only knows what was left behind

A young boy searchin’ for his home and the love he knew

And family too – never faded from his mind

As time and the train rolled by. As time and the train rolled.

 

He watched the train roll by and wondered why it made him feel 

There was something familiar in those rails.

 

David Moss website

David Moss Facebook Page

About Patti Jo Roth-Edwards

A lifetime in the Music Business as a working professional Performer, Singer-Songwriter, Recording Artist and Producer has brought Patti Jo Roth-Edwards here to settle in Idaho. Consistently at the Top of the Charts on Number One Music, with over 100 songs playing globally over internet radio, Patti Jo’s songs enjoy millions of plays. As a Judge for the Northern California Songwriters’ Association and the California Country Music Association, her knowledge and understanding of music and performance is respected and well-established. Many of her songs are available for download on iTunes and Amazon. In addition to her 5 albums, she has 104 singles available through CDBaby.com.
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One Response to Patti Jo’s Country: A Personal Story from a Great Songwriter, David Moss

  1. Russ Edwards says:

    Great article. Nice song.

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