Posted by: David Harley | July 21, 2012

Index to Words & Music Pages

[12th May 2014 update] Verse and music on this page are slowly being transferred to different blogs, imaginatively entitled David Harley’s Songs and David Harley’s Verse, and in fact there’s already a whole more information there. If you’re only interested in the security-related stuff, you might want to shoot over to my Small Blue-Green World page.

Contact email: info[at]

Here’s a close-to-full list of the other Small Blue-Green blogs:

I suppose you could call this my vanity site. It’s maintained as a resource for my music and for writing that isn’t (usually) directly connected to my ‘real’ job  as an IT security author/consultant. (If you’re actually interested in the security stuff, see the links at the end of this post.) Just to be clear, none of this material is in the public domain, and all rights are reserved. I hope you enjoy listening to/reading it but if you actually want to use it in any commercial context, unlikely as that may sound, you are honour-bound and legally required to ask me first: you can email me at info[at] Or via Small Blue-Green World, which is me wearing my business head.   

Recording Sessions:

Diverse Brew Sessions:

  1. One Step Away From The Blues
  2. True Confessions
  3. Heatwave

Scriptwrecked Sessions

Sheer Bravado Cassette:

  1. Long Stand
  2. Speak My Heart
  3. The Weekends
  4. Dives and Lazarus
  5. The Butterfly (slip jig)
  6. Paper City
  7. Sheer Bravado
  8. View From The Top
  9. She’s Gone
  10. So Much For Romance
  11. Circle
  12. Blues For Davy

More recent recordings (not commercial quality): as of 12th May 2014, the listings for this are somewhat out of date.

Songs Without Music:

Demo Recordings

Quick and dirty recordings of songs I hope to revisit and spend more time on a better version. Home-recorded on BOSS digital gear which I hope to have time to learn to use properly Real Soon Now. Just one song – Bootup Blues – there at the moment, though two of the recordings added to the Songs Without Music page also qualify and will probably get moved shortly:

Settings of poems (unaccompanied demo versions)

Other Writing

Miscellaneous Prose

Verse or Worse

Folk Resources

At the moment, this page consists of a floor-singer’s tipsheet a number of us compiled in the late 1990s, and a reference to a later version – not sure where that comes from, but it wasn’t me. As I seem to spending a lot of time with old folkies these days, it may be that other things might find their way onto this page in due course.

Parodies Regained

…could have been a separate page here, I suppose, but it isn’t, for historical reasons. Anyway, here’s a list of what’s there at present:

Security-related publications

Security-related publications aren’t kept on this site now. Most of my recent papers are available or linked from the ESET resources pages including white papers, conference papers, and articles for external publications and sites. Mac and other Apple-related resources are mostly kept at the Mac Virus site. Some other papers and information on some of my security books can be found on the Small Blue-Green World blog page.

Posted by: David Harley | August 20, 2015

Wearing out my shoes

Words and music by David Harley, copyright 1975

There’s no future
In singing the blues
I guess I’ll leave
I’ve got nothing to lose

Wearing out my shoes
Walking away from you
And if I can’t walk
I guess I’ll fly

I’m going down to the crossroads
My cap in my hand
Looking for a woman
Looking for a man

I went down to the depot
Looked up on the Board
Said good times here
Better down the road

Posted by: David Harley | August 20, 2015


Soleares: copyright David Harley 1988

There’s a note she keeps re-reading from a graveyard far away
The writer begs to offer sympathy
The man she once married and left so long ago
is gone beyond remorse and anything that might have been

Automatically she washes up, tidies and dusts
Starts to drink her coffee and leaves it to congeal
She tries to write an answer but somehow it falls apart
The words are vague and stilted – how can she tell how she feels

A threat of soleares spins softly from stereo
Ghostly in the sunlight, reflecting ancient pain
Sombre rescuerdos, a hint of distant thunder
Like the muted threat of Spanish rain

The phone rings: she shares the news but nothing of her feelings
Someone says “So sorry – I’ll ring back if you like”
Ringing off as if in dread of inapt and nervous laughter
Hanging brittle in the silence though it never left her throat

Shadows lengthen into evening: she has a drink or two
As if to fill the emptiness she feels
She can’t trace her emotions but her thoughts are wheeling
Around a situation scarcely real

Somehow all our failures rise to haunt us from the graveyard
At times like this it seems that guilt and death
Potentiate each other like phenobarb and whisky
It passes with time but she can’t believe it yet

Her nights won’t all be sleepless like the one that lies ahead
In a world of other people with their own claims on her time
Other joys and sorrows: other games to win and lose
But a whisper from the grave still tells her “Tonight is mine”

Posted by: David Harley | August 9, 2015

Thanks for nothing Ephraim Clutterbox

Words and Music by David Harley, copyright 1970

This may be the most positive song I’ve ever written. Which isn’t saying much, but at least it’s in a major key. Dedicated to David ‘Mex’ Higgen, who believed it to be written about him (which wasn’t altogether the case…) Mex was actually an excellent electric guitarist with whom I played from time to time when I was at university at the end of the 1960s. The ‘beautiful Ephraim’ line is a sideswipe at Jim Morrison, who is certainly past caring.

I used to think that life was for living
I was grateful for each and every day
I thought if we all tried a little harder
The world might be improved in some small way
But then you deflated my illusions
And made me see the error of my ways
You made me realize there is no black or white
Just a mediocre shade of grey

So thanks for nothing, Ephraim Clutterbox
You made me see the writing on the wall
You’ve rid me of so much of my foolish make-believe
That now I don’t believe in you at all

I used to be a gullible romantic
With a vague belief in beauty, truth and right
And a taste for lullabies and good intentions
With a sporadic urge to fight the good fight
But you told me it was all a social fiction
And I was too naive to disagree
When you exposed my neurotic motivation
And unhealthy craving for security

I’ve had enough of you, Ephraim Clutterbox
Your belief that it’s all lies and you can’t win
Your rational, so logical indifference
To anything that’s worth believing in
So this is the end, beautiful Ephraim
But I want you to know before you leave
I can kid myself your kind can be safely ignored
If enough people start to believe

Posted by: David Harley | August 5, 2015

Angie Come Alone [demo]

I’ve had this song by Tony Maude running through my head for nearly two days, so I had to put something down while I was thinking about a guitar part.

Tony is still around, and has a web site here.

Posted by: David Harley | August 4, 2015

Blues for Davy

Posted by: David Harley | August 4, 2015

Scratch one lover [electric demo]

Found on a cassette from the late 1980s or early 90s.


Posted by: David Harley | August 2, 2015

drunk last night

Drunk Last Night: Words and Music David Harley, 1976

I was drunk last night / drunk the night before x2
I’ll be drunk again this evening / but I won’t be drunk no more

I don’t mind coffee
Milk or even tea
But water without whisky
Is just too strong for me

I was drunk last night / drunk the night before x2
I’ll be drunk again this evening / but I won’t be drunk no more

Feeling tomorrow
Like I do today
I’ll break your hard rock head
And make my getaway

I was drunk last night / drunk the night before x2
I’ll be drunk again this evening / but I won’t be drunk no more

If you quit me baby
Tell you what I’ll do
I’ll drink a quart of whisky
And let it out all over you

I was drunk last night / drunk the night before x2
I’ll be drunk again this evening / but I won’t be drunk no more

Posted by: David Harley | July 31, 2015

Down to the River

Down to the River: copyright David Harley, 1981

Another example of the sort of song I never write. I’m not really sure where this one came from. When I was singing with Anna (Lyn) Thompson in the 80s we were going to work this one up as a duet, but never really got to it. So I pretty much forgot about it until today, which means that this is a very rough-and-ready demo. But I certainly intend to get back to it.

I won’t go down to the river/anyway not yet
There’s too much else to do and the water’s cold/and I don’t want my feet wet
Don’t want to get my feet wet

I won’t go down to the river/I guess I really should
But the sand’s so warm between my toes/and you know it feels so good
I know it does me good

Come on down to the river/it can’t do you harm
You’ve got to learn sometime to sink or swim/and the sun will keep you warm
The sun will keep you warm

I won’t go down to the river/you know I can’t go down
The water’s so still, the sides so steep/I’m scared that I might drown
So scared that I might drown

Come on down to the river/the road’s so hard and rough
If you keep your head and your hands are clean/surely you can’t drown in love?
You can’t drown in love

I can’t go down to the river/I surely can’t go down
My soul is parched but my body aches/and I just know I’ll drown
I know I’ll surely drown

Come on down to the river/it tastes so sweet and cold
Come on down before it gets too late/and wash the mud out of your soul
The mud out of your soul

We’ve got to get on down to the river/we have to learn to trust
Got to wash away all the doubt and fear before the whole damn’ world dries up
Before the world dries up

We’ve got to wash away all the doubt and fear/before the whole damn’ world dries up…

David Harley
Small Blue-Green World

Posted by: David Harley | July 24, 2015

Ghosts [demo]

I’m not saying I’m a slow writer, but this set of words is at least a quarter of a century old, and even though I had a vague idea of how I wanted the tune to go, I only just got around to trying to put them together. Hopefully, in another 25 years I’ll have learned it well enough to record it properly.

Posted by: David Harley | July 2, 2015

Unknown tune

Doesn’t even qualify as a demo. This tune popped into my head yesterday from some deep dark recess of memory. I’d quite like to work it up as a guitar piece, but I suspect I haven’t remembered it correctly and I have no recollection of its name. Perhaps one of my folky friends can remind me?

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