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The California Sun
(Mike Vallely / Joe Grushecky)

I was born in New Jersey, thirty years ago
Raised in the suburbs, man, I went to public school
I left home at eighteen and I headed out west
I met a pretty girl and ended my quest

Our lives were just beginning, so many dreams to see through
I ran away with her from the world and all its fools
Out on the Pacific, condo-penitentiary
We lived like convicts of our own misery

Our enemies were chosen
So far still to run
We seethed in the heat
Of the California Sun
Of the California Sun

Back in New Jersey, my mother cried
Daddy had a heart attack, man, he almost died
I got back on that highway and I headed home
I held daddy in my arms and all the ripped seams were sown

I went back to California, pick up the pieces of my life
My girl got pregnant and she became my wife
On a rainy winter’s day, just before the new year
A baby girl was born and for a minute I felt no fear

Behind the walls on Main Street
I guarded like a loaded gun
I’d open up the blinds sometimes
To let in that California Sun
Yeah the California Sun

Back in New Jersey, I found myself again
I couldn’t make the ends meet, I felt my poor back bend
I crawled home to the shelter of my daddy’s house
I moved my family east, it was the only way out

Through storm after storm I weathered my pain
With a family to provide for and a pride to regain
I worked towards being someone with someplace to go
On the streets of my hometown I wondered if I’d ever know

Know what it was
That was pushing me to run
From the shadows of my past
Into the California Sun
Into the California Sun

I left New Jersey just after one year
I was back up on my feet and there was nothing left there
Back to California, I took my family
And I did what I had to do just like my daddy before me

A father and a husband, without a sacrifice
That’s the bottom line where I’m living my life
I’ve picked up all the pieces and I’ve put them in their place
The moon and the stars and those planets out in space

Heaven and Hell
Let thy kingdom come
Until then I’ll be basking
In the California Sun
In the California Sun
In the California Sun
In the California Sun


from A Weekend In Pittsburgh, released August 1, 2002



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Mike Vallely Long Beach, California


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