The Dust​-​Up

by Keith Monacchio

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In September 2008, Keith Monacchio, formally of the bands The Commons and The Semibeings officially launched a standalone career. The Long Evening, his first solo record, was released in 2010 to stellar reviews and the album ended up on several year-end “Best of” lists. In 2012, Monacchio released the Tips, Drinks and Gas Money EP to similar acclaim and more year end “Best of” lists and songwriting awards.

His latest offering is called The Dust-Up. Comprised of 10 exciting and intimately composed songs. The Dust-Up is yet another Sean Glonek production that pulls the absolute best out of Monacchio’s very soul. The Dust-Up is some of Monacchio’s best music ever. His working relationship with Glonek is the perfect blend of songwriting craftsmanship and technical prowess. Warm and toned songs such as “Angels on the Horizon”, “Saber-Tooth Tiger” & “The Wheat Field” show the emotionally charged method of Monacchio and his lyrical accomplishments. Monacchio and crew of top-notch players churn across the vast open plains to get the listener to their personal salvation.

Other songs such as the wildly popular “The Bridge”, “Where You Live, I Live” to the confessional “Allenhurst” & “Bad Girlfriend” tear straight across the aural path to find individual power and success and bury themselves right in the heart of the listener.
Another fantastic song packed with excellent arrangements and horns aplenty is “A Little More Time,” a robust and swinging song in the traditional vein of Booker T and The MG’s. Filled with a blues swagger and soul-based feel, Monacchio also covers the bases on acoustic-based numbers as well. Songs such as “Million to One Shot” present Keith as the troubadour he truly is, delivering verse after introspective verse of lyrical prose. Trading harmonica riffs with acoustic guitar magic, Monacchio provides folkie goodness in the traditional style of the masters.

The Dust-Up closes with the track “I Won’t Give Up. A song about unwavering faith in oneself. This record runs the gamut when it comes to musical styles and sounds. From rock-based compositions to alternative sounds and spins on folk and down home blues, Keith and crew weave an extremely addictive tapestry of musical worth.


released September 12, 2016

All songs written by Keith Monacchio
MonacchioMusic / BMI 2016

Produced by Sean Glonek


Guitars, Ukulele, Guitalele & Harmonica – Keith Monacchio
Bass – Jay Walker
Drums – Tom Kale
Pedal Steel – Jerry Steele
Guitars, Synthesizer, Piano & Wizardry – Sean Glonek
Baritone Saxophone – Mark Gallagher
Tenor Saxophone – Ceilidh Madigan
Trumpet – Christopher Tolomeo
Backing Vocals – Sheli Monacchio
Backing Vocals – Melissa Anthony
Piano & Fender Rhoads – Don Ober

* Horn Arrangement on “A Little More Time” by Keith Monacchio, Mark Gallagher & Ceilidh Madigan

Recorded, Mixed & Mastered by Sean Glonek
at SRG Studios Hamilton, NJ

Art Direction by Johnny Ott at Bitchslap Artwork

This record is dedicated to my son. The brightest light these eyes have ever seen.



all rights reserved


Keith Monacchio Hamilton Township, New Jersey

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Track Name: Angels On The Horizon
They say there are angels on the horizon
But, I ain’t seen hide nor hair of them
Shooting down from the clouds like lightning
Gonna save every God fearing soul they can

Yes sir, there is gonna be showdown
Between the believers & the cynical
They’re lining up like cross-town rivals
But, I ain’t yet decided whose side I’m on

White robes and halo’s riding on bison
Believers are singing them fight songs
Head boy cynic stands up “says I can’t hear them”
Says “we were right all along”

Lil sister, why you popping them devils?
Is your truth too hard to confess?
Isn’t it enough to see them little ones smile
Do you swallow them devils down to forget?

White robes & halo’s ain’t gonna save ya
It’s all on you, that’s just common sense
Big believer says look up there all around you
Bet you’ll be changing your tune when you’re on your deathbed

White robes & halos ain’t gonna make ya
Any better off in the end
But, if you’re looking for some kind of faith revival
Then the believers are here for you, with out stretched hands

They say there are angels on the horizon
But, I’m still stuck here on the fence
If I can climb the highest mountain?
I can put my faith to the test
Or put this myth to rest
So, the believers & the cynical suggest
Track Name: The Bridge
The Bridge

One foot right in front of the other
I as just a baby boy holding on to his mother
Fearless of falling over
Going forward unaware to what’s over your shoulder

When you’re grown up and on your own
You settle right into a safe little zone
All those chances to take
Scared to fall on your face

Everybody’s got a bridge to be crossed
Above the breaking waves and the jagged rocks
I might just make a mess
My feet feel like cement
But I need to take
That very first step

First time riding on my bicycle
First time dad took off the training wheels
Fast as I can down the big old hill
My brothers dusted me off
When I my first spill

When you’re grown, they say don’t go to fast
Cause that big old hill, now has bumps and cracks
And you gotta be ready when that big world smacks
You right between the eyes and just laughs

Everybody’s got a bridge to be crossed
Above the choppy water
Where the ships get tossed
I’m not afraid to get wet
Just scared of heights I guess
But, I need to take that first step

I once tried to kick growing old
Took up cigarettes to stunt my growth
But, that plan didn’t really work
It made things just a little worse
As I sit here and light another smoke
But I quit those things

One arm stretched above the other
Reaching for that candy tucked away in the cupboard
Old enough to know my right from left
But, it’s might right from wrong that I still don’t get

Decisions down the pike come fast and furious
Love & loss still play the role of mysterious
All this time tracing someone else’s tracks
Pulling stones out of my shoes and rabbits out of my hat

Everybody’s got a bridge to cross
Some trudge right on, some jump off
I think hard and I second guess
Will the other side be filed with success?
But I need to take
Yeah, I need to take
That very first step
Track Name: Saber-Tooth Tiger
Saber-Tooth Tiger

She got the back of his hand
One too many times
One too many looks
Seen one too many bad sides
Going out of her way to make this house a home
He thinks he knows me, but he don’t know me at all

I’ll be a saber-tooth tiger in a lion’s cage
You can be the tamer watch me fly into a rage
I’m burning your dinner while you nap on the bed
One of these days you’re gonna turn up dead

Black boots and dark roots, a kick in the head
Cover up & shut it up, didn’t you hear what I said
She said I’m movin to my mom’s, you ain’t going nowhere
I’m way past the point
I’m gonna snap I swear

And be a saber-tooth tiger in a lion’s cage
You don’t know the depths of the war I can wage
I’m writing your obit, while I’m baking the bread
One of these days I’m gonna put a knife right in your head

I’m not sorry for the things I say
Because everyday
Always ends the same
A bouquet of flowers and a full ashtray
It’s a big mistake
But, it’s the only way

Today’s the big day; I dropped the kids at my moms
Gun check, gut check, left the porch light on
I’ve got one door left out of this personal hell
Just have to look him in the face and handle this myself
So, get down on your knees
My most dreaded disease
Let me hear you plead
You sound just like me
I really should have done this years ago
Just ignored your commands
And disrupted the show

Like a saber-tooth tiger in a lion’s cage
For once it won’t be mine, but his blood on the page
The hole’s already dug out behind the shed
Tonight I’m gonna sleep with the clearest conscience ever slept
Gonna leave the dirty dishes, while he sleeps with the fishes
The rest of my life starts tonight
Track Name: A Little More Time
A Little More Time

I wanna thank you baby
For waiting on me
All I can say is
Is I'm truly sorry
I could try explaining
(truth is) I just lost my mind
But I could fix it all up now
Just need a little more time

Now, I ain't gonna read you
My laundry list of sins
I ain't gonna state my case
Because I wouldn’t know where to begin
All I do replay
My mistakes over and over, in my mind
I want to try to fix em all
Just need a little more time

I told you lies
I swore up and down and I cried
Don’t push me aside
Cause if you do, I might just lay down
And die

So, just so were clear
Crystal blue
I know I hurt you down deep
Everything I done…I wish I…could undo
I hope were not over
That I haven’t strayed too far, over the line
That you could see me one more time true
With a little more time
And maybe I could hold you again
With a little more time
Track Name: Million To One Shot
Million to One Shot

You can size me up if you want to
And read my resume through
I know I’ve made some bad choices
But, they seemed like the right thing to do

If you need em I’ve got references
I’ll hand you over my black book
The folks in there, yeah, we’ve had our differences
And with some of them I’m still on the hook

For things I’ve said, and did, and was
It’s given me ample reason to pause
And to reflect and address my flaws

So, please accept me for what I’ve got
Don’t reject me for what I’m not
I’ve got us all worked out
It’s just a million to one shot
But I’ll take them odds exactly
And I’ll gladly bet the pot
And I’ll say so matter of factly
We got a million to one shot

So, if you’ve read my qualifications
You seen what I can do
Got the skinny on my past relations
Yes, everything they said is true

I can be a bit of a bastard
And a whole lot of crazy to
But, if you call my brothers up and ask him?
They’ll say “He’s not crazy, just slightly askew”

But aren’t we all just one move away
From losing our minds from the daily day to day
On the balance beam together we sway

So, please respect the good I’ve got
Don’t try to change all my have not’s
So, holy long-shots Batman
It’s just a million to one shot
So, don’t you give me that soul mate stuff
I hear it’s cool, but still not enough
That true love wedding knot
It’s a million to one shot

After all, what have I done that’s been so wrong?
Kept my beliefs and character strong
As the years keep rolling on and on

So, you can size me up if you have to
You gotta do, what you gotta do
I’ll be waiting for you here, after
Your deliberations are through
We’re not the best pair on the block
But, we might be the only chance we got
Think of us like a romantic comedy
Called a million to one shot
A million to one shot
You gotta be in it to win it
Track Name: Allenhurst

The only constant here is hope
It wears an armored plated coat
Rescues the truth, through fire & smoke
Talks that straight dope

There is no answer key for this
Yet all these questions still persist
But, there is faith inside the meaning
Of what we’re feeling

Exploding hearts lay on the floor
We’ve done some damage and barred some doors
Burnt bridges right to the ground
They’re never coming back now

Like public enemy’s # 1
We’re Bonnie & Clyde on the run
Its love we’re robbing and stealing
Cause that’s what we’re feeling

Like a runaway train going off the rails
We’re driving that thing, but who’s writing the details
They’re damn sure not thinking about us

See, we got no map to follow
Just some bitter pills to swallow
But, we’re through with taking our meds
And we can’t change, what’s in everyone else’s head

So, the only constant here is hope
It’s a ways away, but in our scope
And our resolve is bulletproof
That’s the truth, Ruth

And if some ties they come undone
If we’re ostracized and shunned
That’s on them, cause we’re freewheeling
That’s what we’re feeling
Track Name: Where You Live, I Live
Where You Live, Is Where I live

You could move to the Far East
You could move to the South Pole
Pack up all your belongings
Get all your ducks in a row
See any place you lay your head
My heart’s right round the bend
Cause baby where you live, is where I live

I could take a west bound train
My destination unknown
Change my appearance
Change my name
Leave a cryptic message on your phone
I can get as lost as I want
Cause only you know where I’ve been
Cause baby where you live, is where I live

I’ll track you down
Wherever you go
I’ll come around
With flowers, wrapped in red bows
Don’t you know, we’re the same, dear
Two identical stones

So run now wild one
See, I don’t wanna know
We had a good little run
‘Til we closed down the show
No use to place blame here
What’s done is done

You can go to the ends of the earth
I can mine for silver & gold
We can work, and work, and work
But we can’t fit a square peg in round hole
And if come a day, our truth is exposed, it’ll be played by violins
Until then, I hope you know
Baby where you live, is where I live
Baby where you live, is where I live
Baby where you live, is where I live
Track Name: The Wheat Field
The Wheat Field

Looking out across this, this great big field
Searching for salvation, shaping my ideals
Is it coincidental, that the seeds left unsown?
Are left here for the birds or scorched by the burning sun

In the field we’re up early, we wake in the dark
The ploughman push their diggers, they keep the blades real sharp
The blisters that once bled, are now all calaced and old
The horses need no motivation, to work in the cold

This dirt that I’m turning over
The rocks move against the grain
Is this divine intervention?
Or something man-made
Something I made

Time stands still here, I call the seasons by the colors
When the blue/gray’s show up, know the heavy rains are coming
See we sure need the river, but we don’t need it rising
And last year’s drought nearly broke us, had us all rain dancing

This broken and battered body
The pain it just don’t fade
Tell me is this purgatory?
Something man-made
Something I made

I’m just doing what I was taught to
What I was born to do
Like my father and his father to
It’s all we ever knew

In the heat of the summer, I feel calm and relief
I can hear the voices talking, in the tall of the wheat
The heavy rains that had me worried, are now just a bad memory
Cause these seeds that I sew, are all that matter to me

This dirt that I’m turning over
The lines cut into my face
Is this some kind of miracle
Like transcending time and space
See, I’m just simple man
I haven’t always walked in God’s good grace
But, I made this place
Something I made
Track Name: Bad Girlfriend
Bad Girlfriend

She makes me wanna scream
Holler and curse
I’m just a footnote in her life
But, I wanna be the book, chapter and verse
I want a staring role
I want a pivotal scene
I’ve got more to offer than an extra Yeah, I wanna be her silver screen

But, she’s got limitations
Piled on to her reservations
She’s been known to break, but she refuses to bend
She just don’t want this man

She makes me wanna run
Right into her arms
Lose myself in her bad condition
And keep me safe from harm
She keeps herself at bay
Walks on the other side of the street
Feels like she’s a thousand miles away
When she’s just up the road a piece

I’m having trouble with her translation
I can’t make out her revelations
And I’m all out of flowers to send
And she just don’t want me, man

My history it just repeats
It follows me up and down these streets
It’s an all too familiar crime scene
The graffiti reads like poetry
It’s all knowing, self-predicting, straight to the point
But, the truth is missing

She’s moving away from me
Slipping her hand from my hand
Baby, my palms are all dry
And I know who I am
I’m a romantic junkie
A relationship flunky
In love, I’ve been a millionaire
But with Monopoly money

I know I’ve got high expectations
So cancel the band, the hall, take down the decorations
I learned another lesson, so it was time well spent
One day, maybe, I can see my way through to being her friend
Track Name: I Won't Give Up
I Won’t Give Up

Pouring out of every pore
Drenchin my skin, flowing like blood
Flowing like blood
That’s just…my love

Big raging river, to a clean waterfall
You look a little scared, aint you never been here before
Been here before
Or did you always watch from the shore

Maybe, this thing is bigger than us
And maybe it’s easier, to just give up
But I won’t give up
I won’t give up

Good morning baby, tell me where ya been?
Have you been stuck inside your head, do you suffer for your sins?
Like I do
I’m just like you

If you feel like runnin off
At the first sign of bumps, scrapes, or scuffs
(That’s on you) Cause I won’t give up
I won’t give up
Thought you were made of tougher stuff
And I won’t give up

That late night drive through
The New England fog
The car couldn’t go no faster to get to you
And fate must be trying to tell us something
But I’ve never been one for fate’s interlude
Now the stars are aligned
Now we’re side by side

Maybe, I’m not who you thought I was
See I can stumble to; I’m just skin, bones, and blood
Sometimes I get lost in a flood
Of emotion, pride, & love

I know I’ve got the strength to keep going
Either two against the world or on my own

I won’t give up
I hope you’re my last stop
I won’t give up