- music written by -

Bruce Rupert

handcrafted

original music

-music written by-

bruce rupert

vocals, mandolin, clawhammer banjo, mountain dulcimer, harmonica, bodhran, fiddle, guitar, bass

Click on each title to reveal the song lyrics. each song below is written by bruce rupert and performed by various musicians and bands. be sure to check out our about us page to read more about bruce’s songs and why they were written.

I’m at a crossroads, not knowing which way to turn
I’ve ended up in deadends, many bridges have I burned
I’ve just been driving, my home I can’t see
Just going where the road leads me
So here I’m waiting, waiting for a sign
Which road should I take, which one to leave behind
When ahead I see a figure, walking on the road so slow
I stopped to ask which way should I go
The stranger smiled when I spoke to him and said
I see you’ve lost your way
If you’re trying to get home, you’re heading the right way
All roads lead home, all roads lead home
It doesn’t really matter which road you’re travellin’ on
All roads lead homeI looked on in wonder and then I said to him
How can I get back to a place I’ve never been?
And how did you know I need a place to call my own?
And tell me old man, Where is you’re home?
The old man stood so silent and then began to smile
He said ‘I am a traveller, been on the road awhile,
once I needed a home place, my yearning was strong
then I learned I was home all along”
All roads lead home
Those minutes seemed like hours as the words settled in
I wanted to thank him and turned to where he’d been
But only saw the dirt road and corn gently sway
So I chose a road and slowly drove away.
All roads lead home
All roads lead home
It doesn’t really matter which road you’re travellin’ on
All roads lead home
It doesn’t really matter which road you’re travellin’ on
All roads lead home

You dare not look as she walks by
For fear that she might catch your eye
In Leeds Point, you will find
The mother of the devil of the Jersey Pines
The news through Gloucester spread that year
of the birth of the one that they now fear
Born a devil with wings, it took flight
Up the chimney into the night
Why does the devil have such an interest in thee?
You’re known from the pines to the sea
Mother Leeds
Mother Leeds
The mother of twelve she met with scorn
The news her thirteenth child be born
She cursed the birth while in dispair
May the devil be the baby they heard her swear
The baby was born so small and frail
No devil he, so weak and pale
When the thunder rolled he began to form
To a devil, with wings, tail and horn
Your devil brought fear, your devil brought dread
To the people of the pines it’s often said
They speak of your devil to this day
From Brigantine to Galloway
Why does the devil have such an interest in thee?
You’re known from the pines to the sea
Mother Leeds
Mother Leeds
Mother Leeds
Mother Leeds

Reuben don’t cry, please dry your eyes
It’s a hard lesson son but you’re not too young to learn
Reuben don’t cry
Never would have come here if I knew what was in store
Fever came like I never seen before
The angels took your Ma, no preacher could be found
I buried her myself in this cold Wisconsin ground
By the path where she lay I said the only prayer I know
Held you close as the winds began to blow
Reuben don’t cry, please dry your eyes
It’s a hard lesson son but you’re not too young to learn
Reuben don’t cry
You know we can’t return to Pennsylvania now
I’ll be in Iowa by Spring just in time to plow
But Reuben you’re too young, much too young to go
You need a woman’s loving care
just so you can grow
Only thing to do, all options were explored
You’re going back home, to live with Reverend Mohr
You know I’ll be far away, but I’ll come back for you someday
Keep my memory alive ’til the day that I return
Reuben don’t cry
A little boy had a mother just one week ago
Now he’s going to live with strangers he doesn’t even know
One night in a dream he thought his Ma’s voice he did hear
But woke to find the only sound
was the clank of the wagon wheels
Each mile he went east his father he went west
For a boy just a few years old, his father thought it best.
As he grew into a man, Reuben’s memories did fade
Of his father back in Iowa and the new life he had made
The letters soon stopped, his father came down with disease
He never was the same since Sherman’s march to the sea
Reuben never knew that the illness brought him down
That his father lay in a soldier’s grave
In the new home he had found
Reuben don’t cry, please dry your eyes
It’s a had lesson son, but you’re not too young to learn
Reuben don’t cry………..
Years later when his final days of life were drawing near
Reuben laying weak in bed, a familiar voice he’d hear
You know I’ve been far away, but I’ve come back for you today
You kept my memory alive ’til the day that I returned
Reuben don’t cry
You kept my memory alive ’til the day that I returned
Reuben don’t cry

My Granddaddy came from the hills of Sussex County
Not far from where Lake Owassa lies
He taught me the sounds of all the beasts in the forest
He told me of the Mountain King with glowing red eyes
As a boy he went hunting up Rattlesnake Mountain
Heard wooden knocks in the forest nearby
As he went into the woods to find out what had caused them
Two small stones did suddenly fly
Startled he gazed in total amazement
Into the woods where the knocking had been
There standing in the shadows with red eyes blazing
Stood a creature unlike anything he had seen
Chorus
Well he told me of the wonders of the mountain
The call of the coyote, the Barred owls as they sing
But of all the gifts that the forest can give us
There’s nothing like the gift from the Red-eyed Mountain King
My Granddaddy kept the stones that were thrown him
Painted them red to remind him of the day
He gave me those red stones one day when I was older
Safely in my pocket they would always stay
Years later I went hiking up Rattlesnake Mountain
Heard wooden knocks like my Grandad years before
But I was afraid of those red eyes so I took off a runnin
Didn’t stop until I reached my own front door
Safe within my own home I emptied out my pockets
Sadly found out something wasn’t there
The small red stones were sadly missing
Fell out of my pocket somewhere there on the trail
Chorus
One night I heard a wailing outside my window
Coming from the woods right next to my home
I went outside and heard the sounds coming closer
I knew right then I was not alone
Well soon the Moon came out from its hiding
Lit up the entire tree line
Then out of the woods he came a walking
A giant in the shadows with red eyes shining
I ran into my home, couldn’t believe what I was seeing
Locked and bolted my front door
I heard heavy footsteps outside my window
And saw a giant shadow fall on the floor
The sound of someting striking my window
Caused me to bravely look outside
There on the ground lay the stones my Grandad left me
A gift from the Mountain King with glowing red eyes
Well he told me of the wonders of the mountain
The call of the coyote, the Barred owls as they sing
But of all the gifts that the forest can give us
There’s nothing like the gift from the Red-eyed Mountain King
There’s nothing like the gift from the Red-eyed Mountain King

The train whistle said it was time to go
As we held each other and said our goodbyes
I made you a promise that I would return
As we kissed ‘neath the moonlit sky

And I wonder where you are tonight
And if I’m coming home soon
And I wonder if you can hear me crying
Beneath the Georgia moon
Beneath the Georgia moon

Here I sit by the campfires glow
The cannons are silent, waiting in the fields
To start their volley in the morning light
Then I’ll witness the horrors that they ‘ll yield

If my name is called, and my souls set free
I’ll find my way to our mountain home
And I’ll walk beside you and you’ll know I’m near
And I never more will roam

I’m on my way back home to Galax
And I’m coming home to stay
They’re packing my bags to return home to Galax
Best be on my way
Best be on my way
I didn’t find work up north in Detroit
Guess I was crazy to go
I miss those rolling green hills of Galax
Up here there’s only ice and snow
Up here there’s only ice and snow

If you’re reading this note that I’m leaving
Please tell my friends not to go
For all the gold that they’ll ever need
Can be found right down the road
And not.. so far… from home
My mama told me not to leave Grayson County
She felt I’d never return
She gave me some galax she picked from the mountains
Said “don’t forget where you come from
Don’t forget where you come from”
Those flowers have withered and died here in Detroit
Where nothin’ grows but steel and stone
I need to see those flowers back in Galax
New River carry me home
New River carry me home

I’m on my way back home to Galax
And I’m going home to stay
They’re packing my bags to return home to Galax
Best be on my way
Best be on my way
Now I’m on my way

Really thought those feelings had left me
It was all I could do to forget you
I moved on, my spirits were strong
I wouldn’t let your memory in
Then like the sea waves crashing
You came back with no warning
The storm had arrived, I needed to hide
But still, I let you come in

But I was waiting for you, waiting for you
What in the world was I supposed to do
One look in your eyes and the flame lit anew
I was biding my time, waiting for you

Don’t know how long you’ll stay here
And the reason you came back is unclear
I’ll go for the ride, and take this in stride
For you the door is always near
Then without warning you’ll leave me
And I’ll try again to forget you
I’ll return to my life without the drama and strife
Knowing you’re finally gone

But I’ll be waiting for you, waiting for you
What in the world am I going to do
One look in your eyes and the flame lights anew
I’m biding my time waiting for you

Waiting for you, waiting for you
What in the world was I supposed to do
One look in your eyes and the flame lit anew
I was biding my time waiting for you

One look in your eyes and the feelings are new
I’m biding my time, waiting for you

lyrics are coming!

I saw her at a dance hall on a sticky August night
The bayou waters were deadly still
There wasn’t a breeze in sight
I was standing by the bar alone
The ice dancing in my glass
When this woman in black came swirling by
She quickly caught my glance
With eyes darker then the sky outside
Long hair flowed about her face
The hall was full of women that night but she’s the only lady in the place
She moved across the dance floor like a panther in the woods
To be with her alone tonight, I’d do all that I could

I would dance with the Devil, upon the still waters 
I’d make him a deal, I’d sign on the bottom line
I would rosin up his bow, I’d face Dante’s damned inferno
If I could be with her tonight
If I could hold her close tonight
The band stopped playing and the dancing stopped by the time I caught my breath
I looked around the room for her, but sadly found she left
I ran into the dark mist and I searched for her in vain
Only to know she would not return, I didn’t even know her name

That night I dreamed of a panther, stalking silently in the swamp
Then she turned into the woman in black and in a sweat my dreaming stopped
There outside my window, in a moonless summer night
Was the woman in black calling my name, I ran out in delight.

Slowly she held her hand out, as if asking me to dance
A fiddle started playing Jole Blon and I knew I was in her trance.
I held her tight all through the night as I stared deep into her eyes
Then I felt a tap on my shoulder and I turned around in surprise

Time to dance with the Devil, upon the still water
You made me a deal, you signed on the bottom line
Go rosin up my bow, now meet Dante’s damned inferno
Cause you were with her boy tonight
You were holding her tonight

Too many nights I’m far away from you
Following my dreams I hope will come true
But dear don’t you worry, don’t ever you fear
The sweetest of my dreams is still holding you near

I’ll fill your life, with flowers and a song
We’ll walk hand in hand as the years roll along
With sunshine in the morning, at midnight in the rain
I’ll tell you I love you all over again

Who can tell us what tomorrow might bring
But the sun it’ll still shine, and those birds they’ll still sing
As Spring brings the tulips that rise through the snow
As constant as change is, my love for you grows

Frank and Magdalene lived in the Ridge Valley where the tall Rock Hills begin to climb
In a home her father built, of local field stone and wood, nestled among the ancient oak and pine.

A farmer all his life, his hands showed he paid the price, but a bitter word from Frank was never heard

But Magdalene she would cry, but not in front of her husbands eyes, for he gave her all a plowman could afford.

But Magdalene wanted more in life, then being a dirt farmers wife,
She stared out the window at the summer rain
And dreamed she was far from there, in New York with a millionaire Vacationing each summer in France and Spain.

Frank was not a man of words, and “I love you” was never heard. By Magdalene as she stood beside him all those years
And each day was the same for her, and the loneliness inside her tore
For the lack of love it brought a flood of tears.

And then when she could take no more
She heard her neighbor at the door
A look of panic on his face did show
For Frank working in the barn that day, lost his footing on wet hay
Sending him crashing to the stalls below.

Magdalene raced to his side and found Frank barely alive. The neighbor drove in town to seek a doctors care. She just cried in disbelief, she wanted love not grief As she cradled Frank and gently stroked his hair.

Before long the doctor arrived and together they carried Frank inside. Placing him gently on their feather bed. Frank was breathing but barely so, and with each hour her fears did grow
That the morning would find her husband dead

The sun rays through the window danced as Magdalene to her husband glanced
At Frank lying silent upon his bed
Then she saw with surprise her husband opening his eyes
As he tried in vain to slowly raise his head
Magdalene raced to Franks side, her tears she could no longer hide
As she laid her head gently upon his chest
And with words as soft as morning dew, Frank told her “I love you”
And all her fears were finally put to rest

Frank and Magdalene lived in the Ridge Valley where the tall Rock Hills begin to climb

My love for you is gently falling raindrops
Which is endless in its flow
It’s a deeply routed flower
With the rain it’s wonders grow

To a flower beyond description
Your beauty’s beyond compare
With eyes beyond mere communication
Telling me what my heart needs to hear

Speak softly like gently falling raindrops
With kisses that light up the night sky
Passion stronger than Prairie lightning
This in your eyes I’d recognize

It’s a flower beyond description
Tenderness beyond compare
A touch beyond mere communication
Telling me what my heart needs to hear

Speak softly like gently falling raindrops

Margaret dropped her sack of corn when she saw that soldier ride up to the barn
No words then had to be said, for her to feel that approaching dread
For the soldier sadly came, with news of the Chancellorsville campaign
“ We were defeated, the rebels they won”
Mr Lincoln lost a soldier but Margaret lost a son,
Mr Lincoln lost a soldier but Margaret her son

Three sons so far away, dressed in blue, fighting gray
So far from their Richland farm
So far from her, so close to harm
So far from her, so close to harm

Ben wasn’t much more than a boy
When he joined his two brothers in fighting the Civil War
To help save the Union, the cause it was so clear
So he joined up with the Pennsylvania Volunteers
But his parents would worry every day without ease
And prayed to God each night to bring peace
And they followed the news after each campaign
For the names of boys never coming home again
For names of boys never coming home again.

The morning that the sad news came
A mocking bird flew in from an open window pane
And sang a sweet yet most sorrowful song
Then flew away before the crowing at dawn
Times have passed and Bucks County has changed
John and Henry would come home to their families once again
But Ben would not, he’s still so far away
Resting forever in Virginia clay
Finding his rest in an unmarked grave

There’s a bear on Bearfort Road
He’s blocking the way, so I might as well stay
There’s a bear on Bearfort Road
Since he won’t let me pass, just fill up my glass

The other day I went down to the Valley View
And knowing that I’d have more then a few
I left my truck at my cabin down the lane
And walked to the bar, and here I remain

I hadn’t been there but for an hour or two
When my friend Zeb into the bar he flew
Said “a great big bear’s on your road, he’s a nappin’
He’s sawin’ wood on the way to your cabin”

Well you know I’ve been drinking honey lager all night
One whiff of me and that bear he’ll want to fight
So I’ll just stay and kick up my shoes
‘Cause me against that bruin, the odds are.. I’d loose

So bartender why don’t you please call my wife
And tell her that I’m so scared for my life
Just tell her that bear he won’t let me by
So I’ll just stay here till he gets old and dies.

So here I remain, this dilemma I face
That bears kept me trapped in this place
No more chores, no more work, ‘cause I can’t leave here
Come to think of it.. I owe that bear a beer

Rupert and Scheetz Music Bruce Rupert Boodink

writer - composer

Growing up in Eastern Pennsylvania, Bruce comes from a musical family. His mother studied opera, and his father was an accomplished cornet player. His great grandfather, Tim’s grandfather, was a fiddler. 

Tim’s mother and Bruce’s mother, although one year different in age , were aunt and niece, not unusual for rural families in that day, and grew up like sisters. They also sang together for family and friends, and sometimes only for the cow in the barn! Bruce and Tim are continuing this musical journey.

Bruce’s early musical influences include songwriters Bob Dylan, Harry Chapin, Gordon Lightfoot, Mickey Newbury, and later Robin and Linda Williams , Andy M Stewart and Tommy Thompson . He started writing songs while in High School, and remembers seeing Robin & Linda Williams the night of his High School graduation at Godfrey Daniels Coffeehouse in Bethlehem PA, and playing one of his original songs for them after the show! (Thank you Robin for letting me play your guitar!)

He learned to play clawhammer banjo from watching Tommy Thompson and mandolin from watching Jim Watson of the Red Clay Ramblers and then started playing in a couple “old timey” bands in his home town before joining “The Fresh Vegetables”, an acoustic band, based in Bethlehem PA.

Bruce has played in several other bands during the past 35 years, most recently with “The Beth Coleman Band”, “StoneHearth “, The Gray Wolves” and “Mountain Heritage.” He released “So Far From Her” an album of mostly original songs in 1999, and an album of all original material “Stories” with Mountain Heritage in 2020. His original songs recorded by other artists include “Flowers and a Song” recorded by Patti Davis & Bandit and “Back Home to Galax” recorded by Beth Coleman.

Bruce, a multi instrumentalist, enjoys many styles of “roots” music, from celtic and country to reggae, and incorporates these styles and sounds into his music, creating an eclectic blend that defies any specific category.
He makes his home in beautiful western New Jersey.

-handcrafted original music-

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