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Coaster

by David Shultz

Use this song as you like. And I do hope you’ll like it. And I do hope you’ll use it.

The ingredients are exactly this:

The time my two-year old legs were quickly covered in fire ants.

A text message from my friend, Matthew E White: “Don’t rush. Don’t wait”.

A re-purposed nickname given to me without optimism by a high-school teacher: “Coaster”.

Some chords I refused to force into a song for many years.

The journey of a performance on upright bass by the unmatched Cameron Ralston.

The generous and true guitar, organ, and drum playing by Charles Arthur.

The thoughtful, steady, and necessary production of Andy Jenkins.

The welcoming environment, world-class ears, and kindness of Adrian Olsen, Alex Spalding, and Montrose Recording.

The image was taken in Ophelia Virginia, and features the wristbands I wore while our three babies were in the NICU. The family was all together at the river for the first time. Coasting.

Valdosta, Georgia
In the middle of June
No sign of cooling down
Not any day soon

The shadow dances over the road
The kids are kicking rocks
At the edge of the ditch
Under the mailbox

Loose talk and cold beer
In the neighbor’s front yard
“You know, the secret to getting things done
Is you work smart and not hard”

“Damn it, it’s a hundred degrees
Why do you have our boy
Wearing long brown pants -
Is that corderoy?”

Don’t rush
Don’t wait

You can’t have too much
On your plate
It’s a lifetime
Getting closer
You know where you stand
Got your pockets around your hands
You’re the Coaster

The crying started slowly
Then grew into a scream
The story became a memory
And then a dream

“It’s too hot to have our boy
In corduroy pants”
“Honey, get the hose!
His legs are covered in a million fire ants!”

Don’t rush
Don’t wait

You can’t have too much
On your plate
It’s a lifetime
Of getting closer
You know who you are
Bottle rockets in a jar
You’re the Coaster