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Coming April 19: Live At Eddie’s Attic on vinyl
In celebration of Record Store Day on April 19, The Civil Wars will release their April 2009 concert at Eddie's Attic in Decatur, GA, exclusively on 12" vinyl. To find a participating independent record store where you can purchase a copy, visit recordstoreday.com. The album will also be available digitally on May 13. Tracklist: 1. If I Didn't Know Better 2. 20 Years 3.Falling 4. Poison & Wine 5. Tip of My Tongue 6. My Father's Father 7. No Ordinary Love 8. Girl With The Red Balloon 9. Dance Me To The End Of Love
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Between The Bars
Between the Bars EP is available digitally today. Get your copy at iTunes now: http://smarturl.it/betweenthebars Track listing: 1. Sour Times (Portishead) 2. Between the Bars (Elliott Smith) 3. Billie Jean (Michael Jackson) 4. Talking in Your Sleep (The Romantics)
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“From This Valley” wins a Grammy!
Congratulations to Joy, John Paul, and Phil Madeira for winning the Best Country Duo/Group Performance Grammy Award! Watch the beautiful lyric video for the song here, and download the track on iTunes!
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Watch: Dust To Dust
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Watch: Dust To Dust (Lyric Video)
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A thank you from Joy & John Paul

#1. Wow. Thanks to each and every one of you for sending The Civil Wars straight to #1 on the Billboard charts. Your support and continued word of mouth is what did that, and I am so grateful. Here’s to you as we celebrate.
– Joy Williams

Thanks for your continued support. It does not go unnoticed.
– John Paul White

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New album available everywhere now
The Civil Wars' new, self-titled album is available everywhere. Get your copy now at any of these fine retailers:
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Watch: The One That Got Away
Watch the new music video from director Tom Haines now at VEVO.
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Watch: The Civil Wars – Coming soon
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The Civil Wars: Album Lyrics

Stream the complete new album now!

THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY

I never meant to get us in this deep
I never meant for this to mean a thing
I wish you were the one
Wish you were the one that got away
I got caught up by the chase
And you got high on every little game
I wish you were the one
Wish you were the one that got away
Oh if I could go back in time
When you only held me in my mind
Just a longing gone without a trace
Oh I wish I’d never ever seen your face
I wish you were the one
Wish you were the one that got away
I miss the way you wanted me
When I was staying just out of your reach
Begging for the slightest touch
Ooh you couldn’t get enough
Oh if I could go back in time
When you only held me in my mind
Just a longing gone without a trace
Oh I wish I’d never ever seen your face
I wish you were the one
Wish you were the one that got away
Got away from me
Got away from me
Before anybody has to bleed
Oh if I could go back in time
When you only held me in my mind
Just a longing gone without a trace
Oh I wish I’d never ever seen your face
I wish you were the one
I wish you were the one
I wish you were the one
I wish you were the one that got away

I Had Me A Girl

I had me a girl
Who taught me those things
A young man should know
Down, down on my knees
I’d beg and I’d plead
To learn a little bit more
Oh that woman taught me to pray
I saw Heaven every day
Lord, she could
Oooooooo
Ooooooohhhhohhhh
Ooooooo
Ooooohhhhhhhhhh
I had me a boy
Who buttoned me down
Drew me a line
He, he washed me as clean
As a sinner could be
Showed me the light
Oh that boy, he taught me to pray
But for all of his spit-shinin’ ways
Lord, he could
Oooooooo
Ooooooohhhhohhhh
Ooooooo
Ooooohhhhhhhhhh
I had me a girl
Like cigarette smoke
She came and she went
I slipped through his hands
To my back door man
Under his chin
Oh that woman taught me to pray
But for all her wandering ways
She could
Oooooooo
Ooooooohhhhohhhh
Ooooooo
Ooooohhhhhhhhhh

Same Old Same Old

I want to leave you
I want to lose us
I wanna give up
But I won’t
I wanna miss this
I want a heartache
I wanna run away
But I won’t
Do I love you
Oh I do
And I’m going to till I’m gone
But if you think that I can stay
In this same old same old, well
I don’t
I don’t
I’m gonna break things
I’m gonna cross the line Make you wake up
’Cause you won’t
I’m gonna name names
I’m gonna call us out
I’m gonna say it
If you won’t
Do I love you
Oh I do
And I’m going to till I’m gone
But if you think that I can stay
In this same old same old, well
I don’t
I don’t wanna fight
But I’ll fight with you
If I have to
If I have to
Do I love you
Oh I do
And I’m going to till I’m gone
But if you think that I can stay
In this same old same old
Same old same old, well
I don’t
I don’t

Dust to Dust

It’s not your eyes
It’s not what you say
It’s not your laughter
That gives you away
You’re just lonely
You’ve been lonely too long
All your acting
Your thin disguise
All your perfectly-delivered lines
They don’t fool me
You’ve been lonely too long
Let me in the walls
You’ve built around
We can light a match
And burn them down
Let me hold your hand and dance ’round and ’round the flames
In front of us
Dust to dust
You’ve held your head up
You fought the fight
You bear the scars
You’ve done your time
Listen to me
You’ve been lonely too long
Let me in the walls
You’ve built around
We can light a match
And burn them down
Let me hold your hand and dance ’round and ’round the flames
In front of us
Dust to dust
You’re like a mirror
Reflecting me
Takes one to know one
So take it from me
You’ve been lonely
You’ve been lonely too long
We’ve been lonely too long

Eavesdrop

I don’t want to talk right now
I just want your arms wrapped around
Me in this moment
Before it runs out
Oh don’t say that it’s over
Oh no say it ain’t so
Let’s let the stars watch
Let them stare
Let the wind eavesdrop
I don’t care
For all that we’ve got, don’t let go
Just hold me
I can’t pull you closer than this
It’s just you and the moon on my skin
Oh who says it ever has to end
Oh don’t say that it’s over
Oh no say it ain’t so
Let’s let the stars watch
Let them stare
Let the wind eavesdrop
I don’t care
For all that we’ve got, don’t let go
Just hold me
Let’s let the stars watch
Let them stare
Let the wind eavesdrop
I don’t care
For all that we’ve got, don’t let go
Just hold
Just hold me
Just hold me
Just hold me
Just hold me

Devil’s Backbone

Oh Lord, Oh Lord, what have I done?
I’ve fallen in love with a man on the run
Oh Lord, Oh Lord, I’m begging you please
Don’t take that sinner from me
Oh don’t take that sinner from me
Oh Lord, Oh Lord, what do I do?
I’ve fallen for someone who’s nothing like you
He’s raised on the edge of the devil’s backbone
Oh I just wanna take him home
Oh I just wanna take him home
Ooooooooooo
Ooooooooooo
Oh Lord, Oh Lord, he’s somewhere between
A hangman’s knot, and three mouths to feed
There wasn’t a wrong or a right he could choose
He did what he had to do
Oh he did what he had to do
Ooooooooooo
Ooooooooooo
Give me the burden, give me the blame
I’ll shoulder the load, and I’ll swallow the shame
Give me the burden, give me the blame
How many, how many Hail Marys is it gonna take?
Don’t care if he’s guilty, don’t care if he’s not
He’s good and he’s bad and he’s all that I’ve got
Oh Lord, Oh Lord, I’m begging you please
Don’t take that sinner from me
Oh don’t take that sinner from me

From This Valley

Oh the desert dreams of a river
That will run down to the sea
Like my heart longs for an ocean
To wash down over me
Oh, won’t you take me from this valley
To that mountain high above?
I will pray, pray, pray
Until I see your smiling face
I will pray, pray, pray
To the one I love
Oh, the outcast dreams of acceptance
Just to find pure love’s embrace
Like an orphan longs for his mother
May you hold me in your grace
Oh, won’t you take me from this valley
To that mountain high above?
I will pray, pray, pray
Until I see your smiling face
I will pray, pray, pray
To the one I love
Oh, the caged bird dreams of a strong wind
That will float beneath her wings
Like a voice longs for a melody
Oh, Jesus carry me
Oh, won’t you take me from this valley
To that mountain high above?
I will pray, pray, pray
Until I see your smiling face
I will pray, pray, pray
To the one I love
Oh, I will pray, pray, pray
Until I see your smiling face
I will pray, pray, pray
To the one I love

Tell Mama

You thought you had found a good girl
One to love you and give you the world
Now you find that you’ve been misused
Talk to me, I’ll do what you choose
I want you to…
Tell Mama all about it
Tell Mama what you need
Tell Mama what you want
And I’ll make everything alright
That girl you had didn’t have no sense
She wasn’t worth all the time that you spent
She had another man throw you outdoors
Now the same man is wearing your clothes
I want you to…
Tell Mama all about it
Tell Mama what you need
Tell Mama what you want
And I’ll make everything alright
Tell me, tell me now
She would embarrass you anywhere
She’d let everybody know she didn’t care
Give me a chance, I’ve been beggin’ you
And I just want to take care of you
I want you to…
Tell Mama all about it
Tell Mama what you need
Tell Mama what you want
Tell Mama what you want right now
Tell me, tell your mom
I’m your Mama
Tell me what you want

Oh Henry

Oh the grass is green
Everywhere but under me
Or so it seems
I got a wedding band
And the name of a wandering man
Who I love the best I can
Oh Henry
Have you got something to tell me?
’Cause everybody been saying
You’ve been running around
Oh Henry
I know you wouldn’t hurt me
Don’t you know that we don’t need
One more grave in this town?
Boy if you’re smart
You know you’ll only have my heart
Till death do us part
Oh you and I both know
That at the end of that forbidden road
There’s a six-foot hole
Oh Henry
Have you got something to tell me
’Cause everybody been saying
You’ve been running around
Oh Henry
I know you wouldn’t hurt me
Don’t you know that we don’t need
One more grave in this town?
When we wed we said forever, ever and a day
The whole town heard you promise to be true
So boy, you’re gonna only give your gypsy heart to me
If it’s the last thing that you do
Oh Henry
Have you got something to tell me?
’Cause everybody been saying
You’ve been running around
Oh Henry
I know you wouldn’t hurt me
Don’t you know that we don’t need
One more grave in this town?
Oh the grass is green
Everywhere but under me

Disarm

Disarm you with a smile
And cut you like you want me to
Cut that little child
Inside of me and such a part of you
Ooh, the years burn
I used to be a little boy
So old in my shoes
And what I choose is my choice
What’s a boy supposed to do?
The killer in me is the killer in you
My love
I send this smile over to you
Disarm you with a smile
And leave you like they left me here
To wither in denial
The bitterness of one who’s left alone
Ooh, the years burn
Ooh, the years burn, burn, burn
I used to be a little boy
So old in my shoes
And what I choose is my voice
What’s a boy supposed to do?
The killer in me is the killer in you
My love
I send this smile over to you
The killer in me is the killer in you
Send this smile over to you
The killer in me is the killer in you
Send this smile over to you
The killer in me is the killer in you
Send this smile over to you

Sacred Heart

Quand je marche dans la rue
La rue vers le Sacré-Cœur
Je me souviens des promesses
Au nom de l’amour
Je vais t’attendre là
Viendras-tu pour moi?
Je vais t’attendre là
Seulement toi
Tu peux me tenir
Jusqu’à ce que le soleil se cache
Et embrasse-moi doucement
Jusqu’à ce qu’il revienne
Je vais t’attendre là
Viendras-tu pour moi?
Je vais t’attendre là
Seulement toi
Tu prends peut-être du retard
Tu as peut-être raté ton train
Tu ne peux peut-être pas me pardonner
Les ombres grandissent
Et les foules s’effacent
Je vais t’attendre là
Viendras-tu pour moi?
Je vais t’attendre là
Seulement toi

D’Arline

D’Arline, hope this finds you well
There’s so much I’m dying to tell, but oh
That’s how it goes
Little things left unsaid
That I can’t keep in my head but oh
Just so you know
You’ll always be the only one
Always be the only one
D’Arline, what do I do now?
Can’t live with you or without, but oh
That’s how it goes
I could get over you
But please don’t ask me to
Just so you know
You’ll always be the only one
Even when you’re not
You’ll always be the only one
Even when you’re gone
You always said you want me to be happy
But happiness was having you here with me
You’ll always be the one that’s standing in my way
And that’s okay
You’ll always be the only one
You’ll always be the only one
D’Arline, if I only knew
Where to send this letter to
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The Civil Wars: Track by Track with Joy Williams

In anticipation of the release of The Civil Wars next week, Joy sat down to describe the origins and story behind each of the album's tracks:

THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY

This song pays homage to regret. Nearly everybody I've come across has somebody in their life that they wonder what life would be like if they'd never met that person. It's that sliding-door moment -- in the blink of an eye everything could change. Either for the positive or the negative.

John Paul and I wrote this song in the screened-in porch of my and Nate's new home. I remember warm breezes blowing, a mild day. I had recently had my son, Miles, who happened to be asleep with Nate in the living room, right next to the porch. I remember asking John Paul to play quietly so he didn't wake up the baby.

I HAD ME A GIRL

This song always conjures up an image of a glass of whiskey and a lit cigarette. It's a little brooding. A little dangerous. It smolders. It has swagger and grit. It's full of innuendo and Southern Gothic tones. I love the feel of this track, and the way this song came together on the record. "I Had Me a Girl" is one of those musical moments that makes me wish I knew how to play electric guitar. Or any guitar, for that matter.

 SAME OLD SAME OLD

This song, to me, represents the ache of monogamy. This isn't an "I'm leaving you" song. It's a vulnerable confession of "I don't want to leave. I want to work on this -- with you." Having said that, someone once told me a story about long-term relationships: to think of them as a continent to explore. I could spend a lifetime backpacking through Africa, and I would still never know all there is to know about that continent. To stay the course, to stay intentional, to stay curious and connected -- that's the heart of it. But it's so easy to lose track of the trail, to get tired, to want to give up, or to want a new adventure. It can be so easy to lose sight of the goodness and mystery within the person sitting right in front of you. That continent idea inspires me, and makes the ache when it comes hurt a little less. To know that it happens to all of us. What I'm realizing now is that sometimes the "same old same old" can actually be rich, worthwhile and a great adventure.

DUST TO DUST

This song is an anthem for the lonely. Sometimes you come across somebody who thinks they are hiding their pain, but if we are all honest, nobody is very good at it. "You're like a mirror, reflecting me. Takes one to know one, so take it from me.” When John Paul and I wrote this late one night in Birmingham, England, we decided to change the pronoun at the end of the song. We wanted to represent that we all experience loneliness in our lives.

EAVESDROP

We brought in our producer, Charlie Peacock, on this song. He helped with arrangements and really helped take the song to a totally different place. Sometimes as an artist, you can't see what needs re-arranging when you're so "in it." Charlie brought perspective. Almost like an eavesdrop within an "Eavesdrop."

Strangely enough, this song always reminds me that my voice has changed since the last album. I have my son to thank for that, truly. When I was first pregnant and performing on the road, I thought something was wrong with my voice. I was having a hard time hitting high notes, while my low notes kept getting deeper and deeper. I did some research with the help of a vocal coach, and learned that hormone levels affect a female singing range. Having a boy, naturally, upped my testosterone levels, making low notes easier to hit and higher notes harder to reach. But the great thing? After having Miles, I regained my high range AND have kept my low range. Pregnancy literally changed the makeup of my vocal cords. There's a different timbre to it now, and I love that I can hear the story of my son in my singing.

DEVIL'S BACKBONE

This song is our take on an Americana murder ballad. It's dark, prickly, anxious. It was fun writing because we just imagined some dust-bowl scenario, a broke-down town, and a man awaiting being hung for something he did in the name of trying to provide for his family. The woman who loves him is watching him standing there on the gallows.

This song always reminds me of when the melody first came to mind. I was doing my makeup in the tiled bathroom upstairs, with my newborn Miles in a yellow rocking bassinet next to me. I started singing, and turned on the voice memo app on my iPhone so I wouldn't forget it. As I sang, Miles started cooing along with me. Not on pitch, mind you, but I'd move a note, and he'd move a note. I'm never deleting that voice memo. It's become one of my favorites.

FROM THIS VALLEY

That's our Grand Ole Opry song. A new spiritual. It's actually the oldest song written on the album. We wrote it before Barton Hollow came out. Even though we didn't have our own recording of it, we started performing it live and it became a fan favorite. It made sense to finally put it on an album. One of my favorite moments on stage every night was singing the a cappella part together.

TELL MAMA

We recorded the performance at Fame studio in Muscle Shoals, a place we'd written a few songs before that made it onto Barton Hollow. I always felt the musical ghosts in that studio, one of whom was the great Etta James. We're a band that's known for covering songs live in our own way, and we thought it would be fun to take a stab at "Tell Mama." I found out later that where we recorded was the same room she recorded her version. That might explain why I kept getting goosebumps.

OH HENRY

We wrote it one week before Barton Hollow, in the mountains of Salt Lake City during our first Sundance Festival. We conjured up a story about a woman who was married to a philandering man. She is begging her man to level with her, and letting him know she can only take so much, a la "it's gonna kill me or it's gonna kill you."

DISARM

Again, we're the band who loves to do covers. Both John Paul and I have always been huge Smashing Pumpkins fans. Nate mentioned it might be a cool cover, and we actually wound up working it out the same day that we wrote "Oh Henry" up in Salt Lake City for Sundance. It turned into another on-stage staple that people asked for every night. We found out later from his then-manager that Billy dug it.

SACRED HEART

We wrote this song in a flat in Paris, with the Eiffel Tower in full view on a cold night. Tall windows, Victorian furniture, and somehow the atmosphere of all of that seeped into the song. Nate and our friends were there in the room as we wrote, all of us drinking wine together. I also loved getting to try out my flawed French. I wrote what words I knew in French, and then had a Parisian friend named Renata Pepper (yes, that's her real name) look it over later and help me translate. When we recorded the song for the album, I called in a French professor from Vanderbilt named Becky Peterson, who has now become a good friend.

D'ARLINE

We wrote this song in the studio behind my house in Nashville, on a warm summer day, with the windows and doors open. This song is a sweet lament, of loss and the belief that you'll never be able to love anybody else again. I stumbled across "Letters of Note" on Twitter, and was struck by the title of a letter written by a famous physicist named Richard Feynman: "I love my wife. My wife is dead." A little over a year after her death, he wrote his wife a love letter and sealed it. It was written in 1946, and wasn't opened until after his death in 1988. He ended his note to his long-lost wife with "Please excuse my not mailing this -- but I don't know your new address."

Another aside to this song: While we were recording the song together, John Paul and I could hear crows cawing in the background that I've since named Edgar, Allen and Poe. This recording and performance of the song is the first and only in existence, a work tape recorded simply on my iPhone.

The Civil Wars will be available everywhere August 6. Click here to pre-order.

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Watch: Inside The One That Got Away & I Had Me A Girl
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Watch: The One That Got Away (Studio Cut)