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Josh Woodward: Creative Commons Music

Me and Billy Barnum

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In 1912, I was only a boy
Hardly 10 years old
The summer was dry, the sun in the sky
Where secrets burn like matches

In my Sunday best, I went down for a walk
To Billy Barnum's house
He was alone, no one was home
So I had an idea

    I said to Billy, "let's go walking down in the ravine
    There's no one here for miles so we never will be seen
    If your folks are in Peoria, they won't be back for hours
    So let's go have some fun."

We walked down through the tangle of trees
I lost my bearing twice
But then we emerged, the top of the earth
And watched in silent wonder

We stood tall on the edge of the bridge
When a gust of wind blew through
I stumbled and weaved, and reached for his sleeve
To try and find my balance

    But Billy lost his footing and he slipped off of the edge
    He caught himself with one hand on an overhanging ledge
    But his strength would only last him for a minute, maybe two
    Then he crashed down in the river
    He crashed down in the river

A shallow grave on the outskirts of town
Is where I laid him down
A secret it's stayed, what happened that day
With me and Billy Barnum
With me and Billy Barnum


Tuning: CGCGCEb, Capo 5

Played LiveFull Statistics

Played at 3 out of 12 shows since introduction (25%)
Played at 2 out of 6 non-open mic shows since introduction (33%)
There have been 3 show(s) since the last play.


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  Discussion: Me and Billy Barnum

Reda (anon) · 6 years, 8 months ago
omg! i just love this song. it's maybe somehow creepy...but i love ut :)
JesusWarrior (anon) · 6 years, 1 month ago
Hey Josh, I think you're a very talented musician/song writer and truly striving to express your genre of music to others. I however, am wondering what is it that pushes the lyrics you put on paper from within? As a fellow musician and song writer I find myself often being swayed by the overwhelming desire to deliver upbeat melodies with a constant positive message of hope, love, faith and a detachment from all the worldly things that clutter the minds of so many these days. Just wondering if you're spiritual to a point of releasing that into your music? I actually came across your music from facebook and have only listened to a few songs of yours. But I will say, that I truly believe that you're walking on the edge of a spiritual side of yourself, but maybe I'm way off base and if so, I'm sorry. I just think you have a lot to offer through your music and unique sound. Hope I didn't come off the wrong way or anything negative. Keep doing what you seem to truly love. Remember, that music surely moves the souls of the most hardened of clay hearts.


Athens, OH
anna (anon) · 5 years, 4 months ago
hey there, and man I really love this song. just the whole story, the distant kind of feeling you get, like youre listening to your grandpa telling you about his life and now that i watched the vid and googled peoria, i finally get it b/c i didn't know what that word was in the song before. and again, EXCELLENT SONG! P.S. this is WhiteBrightLightning from YouTube P.S.S. thanks for makin this site, really loving it!
... ich (anon) · 5 years, 2 months ago

Sorry for my bad english, i'm from germany and don't speak it very good... ;) I've found your great songs on, I enjoyed your music since the first time I heard it. It's very easy to understand your music without a dictionary! What I still like is that you can (compared to many modern pop singers) sing live without editing your voice on PC ;) I hope your work is very succesfulness and you still publish your music under creative common rights!

Good Luck and many greeces from Germany

Steven · 3 years, 6 months ago
:) i will take the time and spend time making a Minecraft Animated Music Video for this song! it'll be uploaded on SCMowns. you'll soon see josh!
Josh Woodward Back · 3 years, 6 months ago

Awesome, can't wait to see it!

Steven · 3 years, 2 months ago
It's been a while, and i promised you i will make a Music Video! I did :D
bart van den eynde (anon) · 3 years ago
Behind every song a songwriter must have a story. Always wondered what's the story behind this one. Is it all just fantasy ?
Josh Woodward Back · 3 years ago

I'm not entirely sure, actually! I keep a file of song ideas I've come up with over the years, which has random things like possible titles, themes, lyric snippets, character names, etc. One of the character names I had in there was "Billy Barnum", which sounded like an old-timey name, so I think the story just started coming together from that. 

bart van den eynde (anon) · 3 years ago
I still find this the most beautiful song you've ever written. I think it's because, although very dramaticly put here in this song, it embeds a feeling we all experienced somewhere in our life : a moment where we have done something very wrong (our at least we considered that way ourselfs) and kept it a secret only ours to know.
Billy Barnum (anon) · 1 year, 7 months ago
I stumbled upon this page and song from a Google search of my name. I'm flattered that you would write a song about me. Thanks man!
Josh Woodward Back · 1 year, 7 months ago

That's awesome, I didn't know there were any real Billy Barnums! I invented the name to sound old-timey and mysterious. :D

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