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Desert Anthem Album
Musicians
Mike Collins acoustic guitar, electric guitar, vocals, words and music
Brian Ceccarelli keyboards (piano, organ, bass, flute, chime, strings)
Jim Sahadi drums
Caitlin Collins violin in Scarborough Settler's Lament
Production
Brian Ceccarelli Recording Engineer, Mastering
Tracks
Desert Anthem

The Indians' valley, the sword in the sky,
Mighty and constant, the mountains on high.
The desert before you, the angular plain,
That rolls like a river 'til nothing remains.

A moment in history, a heartbeat somewhere,
A pearl in the desert is suddenly there,
Awakening and stirring and not without pain,
And we'll never be the same.

Chorus:

From the side of the mountain the lights glow like gold,
The thunder is rolling so heavy and bold,
Where so many legacies wait to unfold below you.

Now people are dancing and spirits are high,
But the desert is patient, no one can deny.
She will pull down our monuments and cover our bones,
With ageless soil and stone.

Chorus

You're ready and waiting and poised now for flight,
Your time here has passed like a cool desert night,
Let breathtaking innocence never be gone,
From the memory of one who's moved on.

Chorus

© 1984 Mike Collins

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1 Texas-Arizona Highway 4:50
2 My Amelia 6:32
3 Open Your Eyes 3:25
4 Excalibur 4:12
5 The Children 4:36
6 Desfortuna 2:56
7 Song for Tammy 5:05
8 I Don't Remember Asking You 2:24
9 Poem Without A Song 4:04
10 Restless Heart 4:19
11 Love & Marriage 2:28
12 Desert Anthem 3:43
13 Half A World Away 3:46
14 Scarborough Settler's Lament 5:11
15 Pannonian Christmas 2:51
16 Ezekiel 2:27
17 What Are These Things? 3:47
This work is an ode to the fact that our greatest strengths
are often our greatest weaknesses as well. This song has
also made it to the top 40 folk on mp3.com and has been
aired on radio.
Excalibur

Fire and ashes, and steel out of stone . . .
Gleaming and callous, a blade finely honed, Oh, Excalibur . . .

I sowed the whirlwind and you reaped the storm, fate would not defer,
No matter how helpless, no matter how warm, Oh, Excalibur . . .

Chorus:

For all that is lost and all that was won, I will remember you . . .
Through all that is past, and all things to come, I will be true to you .

Unsheathed you protect me from my greatest care, I belong to her.
Desert me not now in my hour of despair, Oh, Excalibur . . . .

Chorus

© 1999 Mike Collins
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My Amelia

See the light morning snowfall softly kiss the ground,
The fairy breath of the slumber of my Amelia,
Save for the clock's silent ticking all is quiet and calm,
Time to reflect in wonder on my Amelia.

I might search forever and never find one so true,
I'll sooner say I'll never leave this life I live with you.

Though the winter winds chill us, springtime gleams in her eye,
Summer's playing in the smile of my Amelia.

I might search forever and never find one so true,
I'll sooner say I'll never leave this life I live with you.

Love defies all our language and all we build turns to dust,
But my heart will cry forever for my Amelia,

And you can read it in the roses, or hear it in the wind,
Or see it etched in the heart of the man of my Amelia,
Or see it etched in the heart of the man of my Amelia . . . .

© 1986 Mike Collins
Brian Ceccarelli's moving synthesizer intro and extro bookend this song about the timeless wonder of love.
© 1981 Rich Helt. Rich Helt is a talented professor, songwriter and musician. In this tune, he beautifully captures how the heartbreak of leaving home is gradually replaced by the thrill and hope of a new beginning. This song resonated with Mike, who has made the same journey,and will touch anyone who has travelled through the desert to a new home.
Texas-Arizona Highway

Well, I left Houston bright and early this morning and I'm rollin' through San Antone,
In all of my years and all of my travels, I never felt so all alone,
The sign on the highway at Kerrville said 518 miles to go,
In a U-Haul truck through the west Texas dust 'til I get to El Paso . . .

And it must've been somewhere just outside of Fort Stockton,
When the West wind started whispering my name,
Arizona, magic mountain land,
Arizona, well, I'm a comin' to you if I can . . .

I picked up a man and his dog who were tryin' to get to Deming, New Mexico,
He told me how he hated sayin' goodbye to Texas, but the mountains were callin' him home,
Then he took one look at my face and could see I was mighty down,
I told him I was goin' to Tucson, Arizona, he said, "Man, that's one hell of a town!"

Don't you know that's the place where God invented sunsets,
and the cactus flowers bloom in the summertime,
Arizona, magic mountain land,
Arizona, well, I'm a-comin' to you if I can . . .

Well thunder was crashing and lightning was flashing when I rolled across that line,

The rain it was pounding so hard on my windshield, I could hardly see that Arizona sign,
But when I got to the top of the Rincon range, that thunderstorm was gone,
And lyin' before me was the Tucson valley, just sparklin' in the evening sun.

And I saw the sunset mirrored in the Catalina Mountains
And I looked out across my Arizona home,
Arizona, magic mountain land,
Arizona well, I'm a-comin to you if I can . . .
Arizona, magic mountain land,
Arizona, well, I'm a-stayin' here if I can.

© 1981 Rich Helt

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Sunset Cactus by Mary Gianas
Mike just pulled cat's tail.

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