Those Were Good Times, Weren't They?

by Bella Ruse

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'One of those catchy, smart records that will stick in
your mind even after you've taken off your headphones.'
-Performer Mag

'Fans of smart indie rock will love the soulful writing, vocals and unique arrangements'
-Kevin Bowe, platinum selling songwriter

'This is the perfect soundtrack for the summer'

This album is the result of an earth-shaking year for us. We left Minneapolis, wrote some songs in Iowa, got married in Michigan, moved to Ohio, and started a teaching and recording studio out of our new home.

We are so happy to share with you these songs ripped straight from our hearts. They are songs of love and loss and happiness and struggle. It's a journey like we journey through life- with highs mixed in with lows and always with hope. We pray they give you strength when yours is fading, comfort when life shifts around you, and a little laughter to lighten your load.


released June 11, 2013

Copyright 2013 International Sock Monkey
Produced+Recorded by Joseph Barker


all rights reserved


Track Name: Here's What I Know
Here’s what I know about love so far:
Do it now,
Do it hard,
‘Cause the time will come
When the ones you love
Will be gone.

Here’s what I know about pain so far:
It’ll pass.
It can’t last.
‘Cause the time will come
When the ones you love
Will come home.
Track Name: Try
You gotta love someone
To know you’re not alone.
You try and you try.

I have a nephew, he’s five
And when he opens his eyes
He sees the hope in the world
He sees the love in his life.

And what he grows up to be
I hope it’s all that he’s dreamed.
I hope his friends are all great.
I hope his teachers would love
To be the ones to say
Dreaming is the only way.
Every time you push on through
We’ll all be waiting here for you.
Track Name: For the Ancient Sun
Before the ancient sun
Wakes up for the day
I’m on my knees again
Learning how to pray.

The grass bends with me.
The crickets close their eyes.
It won’t be the same tomorrow,
But it’ll be alright.
I pray.

I’ll ask the rocks to help me
Make you change your plans.
The trees are on my side
Lifting up their hands.
And I see it as a sign
When the morning stays.
It won’t be the same tomorrow
But it’ll be okay.
I pray.

Darling, don’t cry.
The morning sun will come in time.
Some things may change
But oh my darling, it’ll be okay.

And no matter what comes tomorrow
I will be by your side for it, so
Just close your troubled eyes my darling.
And I don’t know just how to pray it
So I’ll say it a thousand ways and
Give all my strength to you.

I can’t find words to speak
So I hope the wind will do.
It lifts leaves up to heaven
And now they’re praying too.

I slowly bow my head;
The flowers do the same.
We can’t know what’ll come tomorrow
But it’ll be okay.
I pray.
Track Name: Those Were Good Times, Weren't They?
Will you still smile the same way once I’ve gone?
Will you forget and leave the porch light on?
I can’t imagine life would stop for you,
But will it really be split in two?

It’s time to go.

I won’t forget our road trip to the sea.
You held my hand and then you laughed at me.
The tide has risen there a hundred times
And washed the saltiness from our eyes.

It’s time to go.

Forget the bad times,
Remember dancing in the street.
Forget the fighting,
Just think of what we used to be.
Forget my temper,
Remember waking up at three.
Forget my leaving,
Hold on to who you were with me.

Don’t forget it, darling,
Don’t regret it, darling,
Who you are when you’re with me.

I remember last December
You wrote my name in twinkle lights
Upon the Christmas tree.
I remember when we were younger
We danced all night and you were looking
Deep down into me.
I remember we were together
That morning I discovered everyone
I love will leave.
I remember your kisses tender.
Keep holding on to everything you ever were with me.
Track Name: Operation
You sewed your heart up years ago.
What caused the damage, I don't know.
Perhaps it was all of the heavy drinking.
Oh, love's that operation game:
Can't mend your heart without some pain.
But lately I've come around to thinking
You gotta let it go.

My heart is pretty much in tact,
But recently I found a crack
And now I'm nervous it might start leaking.
I tried some glue to fix the gap;
Who knows how long the stuff will last,
Especially when it resumes it beating.

Now throw that broken soul away.
Show me love and let me stay.
I found myself when I found you.
Don't be afraid of losing time;
This operation's going fine.
Just open up and when you do,
You gotta let it go.

I kept my nose firm in its place,
Removed my heart to spite my face.
Now I've forgotten where I'd hide it.
You say I better find it fast.
I don't know where I had it last.
Don't worry baby, I didn't lose it
I'll find it.

You sewed your heart up years ago
And you won't let me in, I know.
You'd think four years would be enough to fix it.
Oh love's that operation game;
Be careful to avoid the pain.
Don't know about you, but I'm okay to risk it.
Track Name: Fool
Give up.
Don’t lie to us.
Lip service only hurts you
In the end.
You’ve said it all before
And I can’t take it anymore.
If it won’t kill you tell the truth to me,
My friend.
Do you know?

Oh no, oh my.
If you don’t know, don’t lie.

Who you trying to fool
With your lying, you fool?
I’m not buying.
Who you trying to fool
With your lying, you fool?
If you’re not selling the truth, I’m not buying.

Back down.
Chill out.
Get your facts straight. Don’t attack me
When I’m right.
I already know the truth
So shouting at me won’t undo
The mess you made when you restated
Your white lie.
You should know.

I know what you’re telling me to do:
Put a choker on my conscience and to leave it to you.
If somebody dies today, I know you’ll say,
“That’s just the way it goes.”
Track Name: Strangers
Let’s go down to the water.
Let’s pretend we are strangers again.
You wear that ugly raincoat;
I’ll smile sideways and then it’ll all begin.

You say, “Hello miss, how are you?”
I’ll say, “Fine, and I hope you are well.”
We’ll fall fast for each other.
Take my hand and remember the way it felt.

Long, long ago
We were young, we were hopeful.
Long, long ago
We were silly and proud.
Long, long ago
I thought love wouldn’t change me,
But I’m older now.

Now that we are older
I think I can remember
The way we used to laugh back then
When we were together.
Now we’re getting older
And I don’t remember
What love was like before you.

Walking down by the river
We’ll find the tree we stood under before.
You surprise me with kisses.
The birds find their old songs and it’s spring once more.

Let’s go down to the water.
Let’s forget that the time has gone by.
You’re still twenty and lovely.
We’re still waiting for the rest of our lives.
Track Name: When You Asked Me For the Moon
When you asked me for the moon
I said ok cause I had no clue
How many ill-fated fools had failed before.
And when you asked me for the sea
I said yes because I didn’t meet
All the hope-filled has-beens who had sailed for shore.

And this is not all you wanted,
But it is all I’ll ever have for you.

When you asked me for the stars
I knew they’re not meant to be ours,
But I was desperate not to disappoint you.
So I climbed and I clawed my way into space;
Still they were much too far away,
So I scooped up some rays and hoped they’d be enough for you.

But they were not all you wanted
And they were all I’ll ever have for you.

So you can blame it on me,
Say I tried half-heartedly.
You can blame it on me
That I dropped the ball again.
And you can blame it on me,
But still it’s true
That we are not who we used to be anymore.

When I asked you to be mine
I should’ve known that all this time
You were wanting something more from me.
And when we held each other’s hand
How could I know you had a plan
To steal away when there was something more to see?

And this is not all you wanted
But it is all I’ve ever have for you.

Once I tried to surprise you with
A bottle full of angel’s breath,
But you laughed at me when I said it was so.
So I’ll search and I’ll try to find a gift
That’s not common enough to be meaningless.
Will I find it before you say you have to go?

I’m not all that you wanted.
But I’ll keep trying to be more for you.
Track Name: Ghost in the Bedroom
My belief won’t hold on for you.
A teenager can’t let go her dream too soon.
I see a ghost in the bedroom.
My body shivers without you.
A ghost of him.
A ghost of you.

A table set for eating alone again.
A love is on my plate and I can’t dig in.

My body quivers oh so slight.
I wait an hour then I’m off to bed. Sleep tight.
Track Name: Golden Baby
Je t'ai vu d'un œil solitaire
Le pied dans l'arène pour te plaire
Et briller aux regards que j'ignorais
Le tien comptait plus que les autres
Même si tu ne t'en rendais pas compte
Et j'aurais tout fait pour connaître tes fins

Golden Baby, c'en est assez
De courir te faire désirer
Dans ces lumières qui donnent vie à nos nuits

Golden Baby, sans tout pour plaire
Dans ton silence, tu restes fier
De croire en ce qui n'existerait pas
Et si tu veux de moi

On s'est finalement embrassés
Des mois sans silence, sans parler
Dans l'attente qui, de loin, m'a déchirée
Et j'aurais aimé être ces filles
Qui, dans tes chansons, reprennent vie
Même si, de loin, je sais qu’on s'est menti

J'ai voulu tout laisser tomber
Pour ne pas être ombre du passé
Et retrouver tes rires et tes secrets
Mais quand je l'ai vue près de toi
Celle qui en chanson reprend vie
Je sais maintenant que tu m'avais menti
Track Name: All of Us
Sitting in the rain
Waiting for the bus.
Driver’s gonna come pick up
All of us.
We are going home
On the big old bus.
Mom’ll be so glad to see
All of us.

And while I’m waiting for the bus to arrive
I am gonna plan out the rest of our lives.
Gonna marry you and have two little ones.
Gonna buy a house, gonna build a life for
All of us.

Sitting in the sun
Waiting for my guy
Pastor’s gonna come marry
You and I.

We are going home
And I will be your wife
It’ll be so fun to be
You and I.

And while I’m waiting for the pastor to come
I am gonna plan out our new little home.
Gonna have a porch with a light on outside.
Fill it up with love, fill it up with hope for
You and I.

Waiting for the train
Sitting happily.
Conductor’s gonna come pick up
Our family.

She has got your eyes
And he has just turned three.
Waiting at the train station with
You and me.

And while I’m waiting for the “All aboard,”
I am gonna think of all the things I’m grateful for.
Thankful to be right here with all of you three.
Happy for the joy, happy for our
Lovely family.