I Can't Make This Up

I Can't Make This Up

john crossman's picture



Liner Notes: 

Heavily influenced by a book I just finished, particularly the mixed morality of the protagonist. Realizing the lyric is rather disjointed and vague....
Musically, this is kind of my usual schtick.


He put her on like an affectation
Like a brand-new loft
Made from an old abandoned train station

He used to smoke half a pack a day
Always the one that got away

I can’t make this up, it’s already made
I owe too much, It’s never gonna be paid

Came on slow but it ended fast
Time is a line of telephone poles, and they're
Flying past

I can’t make this up, it’s already made
You can’t fake this stuff, these little plans we’ve laid

What you know, it won’t matter much
Fills a row on a shelf full of beautiful books, they're
Longing to be touched

And I made this up, but it’s already made up
A billion times, in a billion lives
Like us, like them, like we’ve never been
Here… we’ve never been… here we go again

Please keep your comments respectful, honest, and constructive. Please focus on the song and not the demo.


Michael Standing's picture

Good song John beautiful voice i look forward to hearing more of your songs.

ustaknow's picture

Great feel; lyrics allow freedom in the mind of the listener as to what's "can't be made up", -- a great way to go. Well done.

Kristi's picture

I like how the story relates to a billion lives from one person's life..."we've never been, here we go again". Deep stuff. Beautifully delivered...very delicate, earnest vocal. Nicely done!

Jibbidy34's picture

Hi John! Your title grabbed me from the outset. I like how you played with ‘making up’ to ‘already made’ as a concept. Your vocals and guitar playing were soothing to the ears. Great musicianship!

kahlo2013's picture

This is really lovely in so many ways. I love the philosophical insight and the thought it provokes. Beautifully written and performed.

ductapeguy's picture

Americana right in the pocket. Some of the couplets are fresh and surprising: affectation-train station, pack a day - go away.

john_a's picture

The loose feel here is very cool. A very Crossman song. Imagery throughout is strong, especially in the first verse.

Drive By Love Fest's picture

I love this line: He used to smoke half a pack a day
Always the one that got away

Your voice is so heartfelt in this, I like your usual schtick.

tcelliott's picture

This is a gorgeous melody and I like the lyric a lot. Vague isn't bad, especially when letting the lines wash over so I can *feel* them. Your vibrato is gorgeous here.

standup's picture

Pretty song, and the story pulls me in even if it’s an outline. I like the shift from can’t make this up to the last one he did make up.

I think there’s a bit of unclarity in the first verse, he put her on, but then the story shifts to I owe you too much and you/us, so I wonder if the first verse could be recast into we/you//us instead?

But s lovely enjoyable intriguing song regardless.

marvsmooth's picture

@ductapeguy - “Americana right in the pocket...”


There is something so wonderful about lyrics that make you think, even if you don’t always have the time to do more than just get pulled in by the melody and musical arrangement.

It’s a beautiful melody by the way, with lovely accompaniment, which made me pay attention, and think about it!

Great writing sucks you in, and this did just that.

I think I’ve said what I need to, hopefully without repeating anything anyone else has said!

SueAwesome's picture

"time is a line of telephone poles and they're flying past" ... that's one hellavu line. dang it, john.

this was a heart string puller. so good. the soothing sound of your voice contrasts supportively against the lyric. not easy to do but you make it seem so

SueAwesome's picture

and if I'm being honest.. I don't think the title captures the feel of the song.

"telephone poles"

that's what I would call this