Album Cover
Ben Sage
Released: Jan 1, 2005
Label: CoolDove/SunSpring Enterprises, Inc.
Track Listing
1 No Substitute for Love
2 The Cool High Wind
3 If I Was a Hundred Feet Tall
4 City Girl Gone Country
5 So, You Made a Buck Today!
6 Take a Letter to Mozart
7 Friendly Persuasion
8 Gimme Back My Wings
9 Just Enough Rope
10 Underground Railroad
11 A Dishwasher's Lament
12 Tears of Joy

Liner Notes



In the 12fth and 13th Centuries, troubadours strolled around southern France strumming lutes and singing tales of courtly love, plying royal intrigues with pithy verse, protesting injustice with subversive charm, and generally making a nuisance of themselves.


Untold centuries earlier, bards, who trained for years in their ages-honed musical craft, plucked lyres and sang out mythic tales of heroes and monsters, epics and epiphanies, as their brother druids went about the mysterious and mystical business of magic.


Fast forward to now. I’m just a guy with a guitar, a harmonica and a point of view summed up in a single statement by a great American revolutionary: “Of more worth is one honest man, to society and in the sight of God, than all the crowned ruffians that ever lived.” – Thomas Paine, Common Sense, 1776


To which I can only add: Remain naked. – Ben Sage, 2003


  1. No Substitute For Love (4:03)
  2. The Cool High Wind (5:48)
  3. If I Were a Hundred Feet Tall (2:58)
  4. City Girl Gone Country (5:39)
  5. So, You Made a Buck Today (3:20)
  6. Take a Letter to Mozart (3:22)
  7. Friendly Persuasion (4:31)
  8. Gimme Back My Wings (4:44)
  9. Underground Railroad (4:12)
  10. A Dishwasher’s Lament (4:37)
  11. Tears of Joy (2:34)


No Substitute for Love

Produced by Ben Sage.

Engineered by Glenn Nishida at Pacifica Studios, LA

Ben Sage – Vocals, acoustic guitar, backing vocals

Phil Leavitt – Drums, bongos, cymbals & old metal stool

Ruby Rudman – Backing vocals


If I Was a Hundred Feet Tall, So, You Made a Buck Today, Gimme Back My Wings, Take a Letter to Mozart, and Tears of Joy

Produced by Ben Sage

Engineered by Glenn Nishida at Pacifica Studios, LA

Ben Sage – Vocals, acoustic guitar, harmonica, cornet


Just Enough Rope

Produced by Bob Gannon

Engineered by Glenn Nishida at Pacifica Studios, LA

Ben Sage – Vocals, harmonica, backing vocals

J.J. Swift – Lead guitar, rhythm guitar and backing vocals

Joe Frengel – Bass guitar and backing vocals

Bob Gannon – Drums, percussion and backing vocals


The Cool High Wind and Underground Railroad

Produced by Ben Sage and Will Ray

Engineered by Will Ray at Country Gentleman Studios, Burbank

Ben Sage – Vocals, acoustic guitar, harmonica

Byron Berline – Fiddle


A Dishwasher’s Lament

Produced by Ben Sage and Greg Parker

Engineered at Green Room Studios, Madison, WI

Ben Sage – Vocals, acoustic guitar

Greg Parker – Lead and rhythm guitar

Roscoe Hays – Bass Guitar

Marc White – Drums and percussion,


Friendly Persuasion

Recorded live at the Club 88, LA

Ben Sage – Vocals, acoustic guitar, and harmonica


City Girl Gone Country

Produced by Ben Sage.

Engineered by Butch Vig at Smart Studios, Madison, WI

Ben Sage – Vocals, acoustic guitar, harmonica



Remain Naked

(a poem by Ben Sage)


Remain naked.

Not prudent, it would seem

But necessary,

For clothes know original sin

And wear it like vanity,

Pressing their creases into our eyes

Like flaming dragon tongues

Beguiling our brain from without its windows

To come and pass judgment

On man and mannequin.


Remain naked.

For laborers sew labels without contemplation

Of the implication of their acts.

They think only of day’s end

And warm meals served on buckled tables;

Of dreaming in color

And the sound of water rushing.

Meanwhile, the labels lie awake in garment boxes

Clutching the throats of sweaters

Chanting in unison:

                                    50 percent cotton

                                    50 percent orlon

                                    Machine wash

                                    Tumble dry

                                    Do not use bleach …

                                    Do not use bleach …

                                    Do not use bleach …

Bleating like shorn sheep

Who re-grow their coats to get shorn again

To reweave coats that wear out again

Like the hinges on a farm house door

While grain fields march past, immortal, laughing.


Remain naked.

For we are all slowly freezing to death anyway,

When we make careers of our careers

And debts of gratitude fall in arrears;

When candid cameras catch us

Talking baseball scores with the clothes horse

And a smile twists from force of habit

Into an electroplated horseshoe paperweight.




Remain naked.

For the acids of conformity cannot corrupt you.

The loins that lay ungirded

Are the pillars of a temple.

A man’s rib cage heaved open

Shows a tyger dwells therein.

The scent of a woman’s shoulder skin

Is the coming of the night.

Tiny veins make roadmaps

Along the breasts and thighs

And the dorsal muscles sing of babies held in arm

Or the drawing of ancestral hunter’s bow.

How can you clothe this,

Your one true gift of life?

How can you risk hiding

From that one true set of loving eyes?


Remain naked.



All songs and poem written and arranged by Ben Sage, except Tears of Joy, words by Ben Sage and Vera Lyoubovskya, music by Ben Sage



 All songs BMI.

©1990-2003 Bennett Neuhauser. All rights reserved.




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