The Year That Sucked                          Lyrics and MP3s

This album is about the time from 2001 to 2002, a year (or two) that sucked.
2000 was a great year for me, and for a good segment of the country. I felt
on top of the world -- as if nothing could go wrong with the dream I was
living.  Though I knew that it would not continue in this way, I couldn't see
what would change it.

2000 ended with some phenomenally bad choices on my part, that set the stage
for a truly sucky 2001, including a bad business deal with my brother
(described in "After Computers"), confused relationship choices, and an
unexpected pregnancy.  It continued with the tumultuous beginnings of
becoming a father and accepting that role, and the sudden and crushing death
of my little baby girl to SIDS.  "When the Devil Came to California" is about
this terrible visitation.

Along the way, the World Trade Center towers came crashing down, as did the
US economy. I had been spending a lot of time in New York, and was affected
deeply by the loss to my beloved city, my friends there, and the loss of
colleagues who died in the attacks and the fear for those I knew who worked
there, but thankfully managed narrow escapes.  I became incensed at the
opportunistic warmongering and lack of sensitivity shown by George W. Bush
and Company during a time when Americans were hurting so badly.

During the years that sucked, Dubya and his corporate cronies, well-connected family,
and secret government/military industrial complex buddies stole the election
and then used 9-11 to hoodwink the people into "permanent war". George Orwell
would be not surprised.  He'd only be interested to know he was just a few
years early in his predictions.  The pure corporate greed and power grabs by
the rich and connected came spilling out of government and the corporations
as never before, and Dubya and Co. keep pushing us to the brink of armageddon
as even Ronald Reagan was unable to do. "Lullaby" is about the
administration's attempt to put the populace to sleep to the soothing talk of
war, and "Hey Now!" is a wake up call to those with their fingers on the
snooze button.

Later in 2002, my dad and stepmother decided to get rid of the family retreat
in the Green Mountains of Vermont, which had provided much solace to me over
the years and especially in the years that sucked.  (There are no lyrics, but
"Leaving the Green Mountains" was written when I thought that I would never
see the Vermont house again.) My dad had begun feeling his years and also felt
great sorrow about leaving Vermont.  I bought the Vermont place from them to
hold on to this great place where we could come and be together as a family,
and to have a home where I could be alone and recover, as well.

The company where I worked was bought by a gorilla of the financial industry,
and the corporate fuck began -- restructuring, layoffs for some friends, wage
cuts and bonus elimination for the rest of us, disempowerment, and lots of
workgroups that did nothing, all wrapped in corporate doublespeak happy-talk.
And around me outside of work I also saw retirement plans lost, friends
screwed by tax laws, and friends unemployed.

Then, at the end of 2002 my mom was diagnosed with advanced stage breast
cancer.  Two weeks later a coworker died of breast cancer.

Yes, some good things happened in The Year That Sucked, but I was so
overwhelmed by the vast suckiness, that it became hard to see the good stuff.

This album is an attempt to express my emotions that went with the
Year That Sucked, and a prayer that it doesn't become the Decade That Sucked.
With these songs I'm trying to convey not only my sadness and anger of the
time, but also a search for redemption. The darkest hour is not just before
the dawn, but in the middle of the fucking night. We can just hope that it is
well after midnight.

                                      -- Laramie Crocker
                                         Brownsville, Vermont
                                         December, 2002

   Song List                         recorded
On Killy Yorn                           X
After Computers
When the Devil Came to California
Why would I
Hey Now!
Mary                                    X
Leaving the Green Mountains
Good day's coming                       X