Annie delivered the sixth piece of music to me at the beginning of September 2006. She called it her “Jethro Tull” piece, on account of the folk-rocky sound very reminiscent of the famous prog rockers.

The stories for the previous five pieces of music had suggested themselves to me almost immediately on hearing the music, but this time it was different. I listened to the track over and over, and nothing came. In the end, I shelved it, and it was almost three full months before I had the idea of making it into a song that, coincidentally, is both weird and wonderful at the same time – although at the time I wrote the lyrics we were still some months away from coming up with the album title.

As you may have realised by now, I love playing with words, so I took great delight in dropping subtle, and sometimes not-so-subtle, hints into the lyric as to who the “sovereign stranger” might be. The biggest clue of all, of course, comes in the final seconds of the track…

 

 

 

Who are you, standing right in my eye?
Not a clue where you come from or why
Turned up late one morning
Who are you – a mysterious traveller
What you do no-one really can tell
Never says where he’s staying tonight
Doesn’t have a suitcase
And his transport remains out of sight

His is the strength, fighting unbearable odds
His is the voice, righting the wrongs of the gods
Master of the universe
Sovereign of all he sees

Here to solve our problems
Who are you, enigmatic old stranger?
Young at heart but there’s age in your eyes
Does he dream of the secrets he keeps?
Never see him sleeping
Then he’s gone in the space between seconds

His is the strength, fighting unbearable odds
His is the voice, righting the wrongs of the gods
Master of the universe
Sovereign of all he sees

Where’s he gone, our mysterious stranger?
Other worlds need his wisdom and strength 
Time to be Lord of elsewhere and when
Never saw him sleeping
He’ll return when we need him again

 

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Beresford & Wallace: Weird and Wonderful
Beresford & Wallace: Suburban Nostalgia