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Tranquility Bank (feat. Aaron Nazrul)

from The Rap Guide to Wilderness by Baba Brinkman



When I’m in the thick
Of it where I live
It’s a madhouse, yeah
But I love my city

I’ve been to the ridge
Where you feel the wind
Whippin’ – the wild places
I’ve been stay with me

I ain't livin in a wild place, most of us ain't
Seven billion and up and gettin closer to eight
And almost everybody livin' in a urban sprawl
Word to all y'all who be goin’ vertical
If we build up, even though the earth is small
Wilderness is comin' back like a curtain call
So don't listen to back-to-landers,
Thinkin they're savin' the planet by takin' us ass-backwards
To the days when everyone was a farmer
And famine was common and thought of as bad karma
The wild side needs to renew and be pretty
You want to be green? Cool, move to the city
I used to be gritty, yeah I slept in a tent
A couple months a year for ten years — represent
Time spent outside, feelin' the breeze
With a spade in my hand I planted a million trees
I heard the coyotes whoop in the darkness
Mikey was hikin’ and found a moose carcass
But sometimes it’s the city that’s rank
So I keep the wild in my tranquility bank

When I’m overwhelmed by the machine
I close my eyes
And see the wild places I’ve been

I'm tryin to find some peace of mind
Street lights gleam through Venetian blinds
Check the time, 3:05, another sleepless night
I just wanna climb a tree sometimes
I swam with the sea otter, and with the dolphin
Made it to land and collapsed in exhaustion
I been twenty feet from a wild elephant walkin’
But ‘round here, nothin’ but the traffic is awesome
Ain’t nothin’ bigger than a SUV
Nothin’ meaner than a driver sayin’ “eff you” to me
Cause I cut him off in his lane
Lookin’ like a warthog, face full of road rage
I seen a mountain lion outside of a cage
In the wild lookin’ at me like I’m nothin’ but prey
My man Ricky speared one the other day
For attackin’ his mate, I’m tryin’ to manage a page
On Facebook at a cyber cafe
Forget the street cred, I’m Canadian, eh
I got bush cred, it’s been fillin’ my tank
I keep it in my tranquility bank

When I’m overwhelmed by the machine
I close my eyes
And see the wild places I’ve been

People come, and people go
In the wilderness you see them out the window of a vehicle
Strip malls, gas stations with attendants
Cinemas, car dealerships, it’s scandalous
I’m sick of this existence, the list is endless
I’ma run into the woods and pull a Chris McCandless
With a rifle and a backpack
And no wits and no map, so I can’t backtrack
I want to dwell where the grizzlies dwell
Like Timothy Treadwell – he’s dead as well
Hmm, well, then I guess I want the cheap seats
Livin’ in the city with the rest of my species
With regular trips to mountain vistas
Where the wilderness uplifts us
Just passin’ through like a couple of drifters
We’ll be back, even if the wild never missed us
We can’t live in it, not all of us
And if you try to tell me that we can I’ma call your bluff
Just keep it real for me, thanks
It’s how I refill my tranquility bank

When I’m overwhelmed by the machine
I close my eyes
And see the wild places I’ve been

So close your eyes and dream

Man I love the wilderness
But I don’t have to see it everyday
I go see it, and then I go home to the city
And it stays with me
It’s better for the wilderness that way
You can see it when you close your eyes
And dream

Close your eyes and dream


from The Rap Guide to Wilderness, released December 16, 2014
Written by D. Brinkman, D. Moross, and A. Ross
Chorus by Aaron Nazrul
Rap by Baba Brinkman
Guitar by Tom Van Deursen
Keys by Simon Kendall
Produced by Soulful Spider
Additional Production and Mix by Lin Gardiner


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Baba Brinkman New York, New York

Science rapper and inventor of several novel hip-hop variants. Canadian transplant to New York. Pathological optimist.

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