Steve Winwood: Back in the High Life

Steve Winwood Jun 10, 1986 (US: WB 925448-1 and UK: ISLAND ILPS 9844)
# Title Duration
1 Play Higher Love (Winwood/Jennings)
Think about it, there must be higher love
Down in the heart or hidden in the stars above
Without it, life is a wasted time
Look inside your heart, I'll look inside mine
Things look so bad everywhere
In this whole world, what is fair?
We walk blind and we try to see
Falling behind in what could be

Bring me a higher love
Bring me a higher love
Bring me a higher love
Where's that higher love I keep thinking of?

Worlds are turning and we're just hanging on
Facing our fear and standing out there alone
A yearning, and it's real to me
There must be someone who's feeling for me
Things look so bad everywhere
In this whole world, what is fair?
We walk blind and we try to see
Falling behind in what could be

Bring me a higher love
Bring me a higher love
Bring me a higher love
Where's that higher love I keep thinking of?

Bring me a higher love
Bring me a higher love
Bring be a higher love
I could rise above on a higher love

I will wait for it
I'm not too late for it
Until then, I'll sing my song
To cheer the night along
Bring it...Oh bring it...

I could light the night up with my soul on fire
I could make the sun shine from pure desire
Let me feel that love come over me
Let me feel how strong it could be

Bring me a higher love
Bring me a higher love
Bring me a higher love
Where's that higher love I keep thinking of?
05:45
2 Play Take It as It Comes (Winwood/Jennings)
Raise the window on another day
Take it as it comes
Just an actor waiting for a new play
Take it as it comes

Ask me to dance, I will dance for you
Ask me to sing, see what I do
If you feel sad, I'll make jokes for you
I'm a handyman, I'm still coming through

If you suffer from a broken heart
Take it as it comes
If your lover tears your world all apart
Got to take it as it comes

I've played a king and a down and out fool
Some like it hot, and some like it cool
Do what they want, but don't be their tool
Savor the throne, but don't mind the stool

Carry on, carry on, carry on...

If they go too far, that's the way things are
Though it may hurt some, take it as it comes

We're all skating on the thinnest of ice
Got to take it as it comes
In a world that is not so very nice
Got to take it as it comes

And day now the curtain may fall
All the plays end, there's no curtain call
If you live sad, or it you walk tall
We're written on wind that's a lot to haul

Carry on, carry on, carry on...

If they go too far, that's the way things are
Though your mind gets numb, take it as it comes
We're all skating on the thinnest of ice
Got to take it as it comes
In a world that is not so very nice
Got to take it as it comes

Any day now the curtain may fall
All the plays end, there's no curtain call
If you live sad, or if you walk tall
We're written on wind that's a lot to haul

Carry on, carry on, carry on...

If they go too far, that's the way things are
Though your mind gets numb, take it as it comes
If they go too far, that's the way things are
If they break your thumbs, take it as it comes
05:20
3 Play Freedom Overspill (Winwood, George Fleming, James Hooker)
Keep on talking all you want
Well you don't waste a minute of time
Who cares, who knows what's true
Coffee and tears the whole night through
Burning up on midnight oil
And it's come right back on you

Freedom Overspill
Freedom Overspill

Force of habit, you could say
The way they talk you're talking away
Who cares, who knows what's true
Your wounded pride is burning you up
Burning up on midnight oil
And it's come right back on you

Freedom Overspill
Freedom Overspill

You're sounding good to me now
Keep talking on
I want to hear the worst
You got no right going around
Talking 'bout the things that you do
Talking 'bout the things that you do
Keep on talking all you want
Well you don't waste a minute of time
Who cares, who knows what's true
Coffee and tears the whole night through
Burning up on midnight oil
And it's come right back on you

Freedom Overspill
Freedom Overspill
Freedom Overspill
Freedom Overspill

You're sounding good to me now
Keep talking on
I want to hear the worst
You got no right going around
Talking 'bout the things that you do
Talking 'bout the things you do
Force of habit, you could say
The way they talk you're talking away
Who cares, who knows what's true
Your wounded pride is burning you up
Burning up on midnight oil
And it's come right back on you

Freedom Overspill
Freedom Overspill
05:33
4 Play Back in the High Life Again (Winwood/Jennings)
It used to seem to me
That my life ran on too fast
And I had to take it slowly
Just to make the good parts last
But when you're born to run
It's so hard to just slow down
So don't be surprised to see me
Back in that bright part of town

I'll be back in the high life again
All the doors I closed one time will open up again
I'll be back in the high life again
All the eyes that watched me once will smile and take me in

And I'll drink and dance with one hand free
Let the world back into me
And on I'll be a sight to see
Back in the high life again

You used to be the best
To make life be life to me
And I hope that you're still out there
And you're like you used to be
We'll have ourselves a time
And we'll dance 'til the morning sun
And we'll let the good times come in
And we won't stop 'til we're done

We'll be back in the high life again
All the doors I closed one time will open up again
We'll be back in the high life again
All the eyes that watched us once will smile and take us in
And we'll drink and dance with one hand free
And have the world so easily
And oh we'll be a sight to see
Back in the high life again

We'll be back in the high life again
All the doors I closed one time will open up again
We'll be back in the high life again
All the eyes that watched us once will smile and take us in
And we'll drink and dance with one hand free
And have the world so easily
And oh we'll be a sight to see
Back in the high life again
05:33
5 Play The Finer Things (Winwood/Jennings)
While there is time
Let's go out and feel everything
If you hold me
I will let you into my dream
For time is a river rolling into nowhere
We must live while we can
And we'll drink our cup of laughter

The finer things keep shining through
The way my soul gets lost in you
The finer things I feel in me
The golden dance life could be

Oh, I've been sad
And have walked bitter streets alone
And come morning
There's a good wind to blow me home
So time is a river rolling into nowhere
I will live while I can
I will have my ever after

The finer things keep shining through
The way my soul gets lost in you
The finer things I feel in me
The golden dance life could be

We go so fast, why don't we make it last
Life is glowing inside you and me
Please take my hand, here where I stand
Won't you come out and dance with me
Come see, with me, come see

And lovers try
'Til they get the best of the night
And come morning
They are tangled up in the light
So time be a river rolling into nowhere
They love while they can
And they think about the night so sweet

The finer things keep shining through
The way my soul gets lost in you
The finer things I feel in me
The golden dance life could be
05:47
6 Play Wake Me up on Judgement Day (Winwood/Jennings)
The story goes, the truth is no one knows
A stranger came, a man who lost his name
At night he tells me his tale, prison, women, wail
The took him in, he let them win
Over and over

He said if you don't have good words to say
Don't wake me up until the Judgment Day
'Cause if nothing is the way it seems
Then this life is just a haunted dream
And all this love is just falling down through the years
And oh, I'd rather sleep

Wake me up on Judgment Day
Let me hear golden trumpets play
Give me life where nothing fails
Not a dream in a wishing well

A man in tattered clothes, crying all he knows
The darkness grows, that's how it goes
Over and over

He said I think of the beauty I've had
And all it does is make me feel so bad
First they make you think you're riding high
Then they toss you off in the sky
And all this life is just falling down through the years
And oh, I'd rather sleep

Wake me up on Judgment Day
Let me hear golden trumpets play
Give me life where nothing fails
Not a dream in a wishing well

Say a prayer for the stranger
Listen to the stranger

Wake me up on Judgment Day
Let me hear golden trumpets play
Give me life where nothing fails
Not a dream in a wishing well
05:48
7 Play Split Decision (Winwood, Joe Walsh)
Sometimes I think he knows too much
His confidence never needs a crutch
One man is a real one, the other wants to hide
One man has his mind made up, the other can't decide
By the time there's nothing left to choose
One man puts the fire out, the other lights the fuse

Sometimes I think I know too much
'Bout what goes on in the real world and such
Half of me is certain, the other isn't sure
One half has the symptom, the other has the cure
By the time there's nothing left to choose
One half has the answer, the other looks for clues

It's a fine line, a very fine line
Split decision
It's a fine line, a very fine line

Sometimes I think we've come too far
If we're lost and if not where we are
Half of us is easy, the other half is hard
Even though we do our best, we end up being scarred
By the time there's nothin' left to choose
One man puts the fire out, the other lights the fuse

It's a fine line, a very fine line
It's a fine line, a very fine line
Split decision
It's a fine line, a very fine line
It's a fine line, a very fine line
A very fine line

Sometimes I think I know too much
When confidence never needs a crutch
One man is a real one, the other wants to hide
One man has his mind made u while the other can't decide
By the time there's nothing left to choose
One of us sees red, while the other sings the blues
It's a fine line, a very fine line
It's a fine line, a very fine line
Split decision

It's a fine line, a very fine line
It's a fine line, a very fine line
A very fine line
05:58
8 Play My Love's Leavin' (Winwood, Viv Stanshall)
I can't believe she's going
I said please show me
What selfish seeds I plant along the way
Black harvest today

The empty bed she left me, cold on one side
Can't believe, only me
Shadows in purple thrill me
I cry myself awake each night
I can't believe that it's true
Here I am, where are you

Can I cope with today
My love is leavin' me
Still I'm hoping she'll stay
My love is leavin' me

But I'll control my feelings
I find faith, healing
And I'll find hope singing
The way is so long
But I'm going to be strong
Oh, what a turn around
Soon, someday I'll be bound

And I'll cope with today
My love is leavin' me
Still I'm hoping she'll stay
My love is leavin' me

Can't believe, only me
Shadows in purple thrill me
I cry myself awake each night
I can't believe that it's true
Here I am, where are you my love
Breathing your perfume chills me
Dreams never lie
Is it true, asking you
My love is leavin' me
Still I'm hoping she'll stay
My love is leavin' me
05:19

 

PLAYERS:

 

Steve Winwood: Keyboards, Guitar, Sequencer Programming, and Drum Machine Programming on tracks 1, 2. Hammond Organ, Synthesizer Bass, Sequencer and Drum Machine Programming on track 3. Synthesizer Piano, Mandolin, Moog Bass, and Drum Machine Programming on track 4. Keyboards, Synth Solo, Sequencer and Drum Maching Programming on track 5. Synthesizer, Sequencer and Drum Machine Programming on track 6. Synthesizer, Synth Solo, Hammond Organ, Moog Bass, and Drum Machine Programming on track 7. Keyboards, Synth Solo, Guitar, Moog Bass, and Drum Machine Programming on track 8.

 

Mickey Curry: Drums on tracks 1, 2.

Carole Steele: Tambourine on tracks 1, 2, 7. Percussion on tracks 3,6,8. Congas on track 5.

 

Randy Brecker: Trumpet on tracks 1, 2, 3.

Lewis Del Gatto: Baritone and Tenor Sax on tracks 1, 2, 3.

Tom Malone: Trombone on tracks 1, 2, 3.

Bob Mintzer: Tenor Sax on tracks 1, 2, 3.

George Young: Alto Sax on tracks 1,2, 3.

David Frank: Horn Arrangement on track 1, 2, 3. Synthesizer Horn Arrangement on track 6.

Joe Walsh: Slide Guitar on track 3. Guitar on track 7.

Eddie Martinez: Rhythm Guitar on track 3.

Steve Ferrone: Drums on track 3.

Jimmy Brawlower: Drum Machine Programming on track 3, 4, 5, 7.

Rob Mounsey: Additional Synthesizer on track 4. Keyboards on track 5. Synthesizer Strings on track 8.

John Robinson: Drums on tracks 4, 5, 6, 7.

James Taylor: Harmony Vocals on track 4.

Paul Pesco: Guitar on track 5.

Dan Hartman: Backing Vocals on track 5.

James Ingram: Backing Vocals on track 5.

Chaka Khan: Vocals on track 1.

Andrew Thomas: PPG Wave Term Synthesizer Programming on tracks 5, 6

Robbie Kilgore: Keyboards on track 5. Synthesizer on track 6. Synthesizer Bell on track 8.

Ira Siegal: Guitar on track 6.

Jocelyn Brown: Backing Vocals on tracks 6, 7.

Connie Harvey: Backing Vocals on tracks 6, 7.

Mark Stephens: Backing Vocals on tracks 6, 7.

Arif Mardin: Synthesizer String Arrangement on track 8.

 

NOTES:

 

Produced by Russ Titelman & Steve Winwood

Engineered by Tom Lord Alge & Jason Corsaro.

Additional Engineers include Nobby Clarke, Chris Lord Alge, Jim Boyer, Dave Greenberg, Bruce Lampcov, Malcolm Pollack, and John Wolfson.

 

Assistant Engineers: Jeff Lord Alge, Claude Achille, Ed Bruder, Sean Chenery, Rob Eaton, John Goldberger, Roy Hendrickson, Scott Mabuchi, Shizuko Orishige, and Steve Rinkoff.

 

Mixed by Tom Lord Alge

Recorded at Unique Recording Studio, Right Track Recording, Power Station, Giant Sound, New York, and Netherturkdonic Studios, Gloucestershire, England.

 

Originally Mastered Digitally by Ted Jensen at Sterling Sound, New York

Co-writers: Viv Stanshall, Will Jennings, Joe Walsh, George Fleming/James Hooker

 

Back in the High Life is Steve Winwood’s fourth solo Album. It was a top ten hit on the album charts in the United States and has sold over five million copies. The single "Higher Love" topped the singles chart and won the Grammy Award for "Record of the Year"; "Back in the High Life Again" (US #13), "The Finer Things" (US #8, the second biggest hit from the album), and "Freedom Overspill" (US #20) were also big hits. This was Winwood's last studio album with Island Records after twenty years with the label. The album also features some remarkable collaborations in backing vocals, featuring Chaka Khan in "Higher Love" and James Taylor in "Back in the High Life Again".

 

AWARDS:

 

1986 Grammy Awards, Best Engineered Album, Non Classica

1986 Grammy Awards, Best Male Pop Vocal Performance, “Higher Love”

1986 Grammy Awards, Record of the Year, “Higher Love”

RIAA Certified 3x Multi-Platinum

BPI Certified Gold

 

SINGLES:

 

"Higher Love" / "And I Go" released as UK single, 06/86

"Higher Love" / "And I Go" released as US single, 1986. Peaks at #1, spends 22 weeks on Billboard Hot 100 charts. Peaked at #7 on Billboard Adult Contemporary charts. Peaked at #1 on Billboard Album Rock charts.

 

 

"Freedom Overspill" / "Help Me Angel" released as US single, 1986. Peaks at #20, spends 15 weeks on Billboard Hot 100 charts. Peaked at #17 on Billboard Adult Contemporary charts. Peaked at #4 on Billboard Album Rock charts.

 

"Freedom Overspill" / "Spanish Dancer" released as UK single, released as UK single, 08/86

"Freedom Overspill" / "Spanish Dancer" + "Higher Love" / "And I Go (2 x 7")" released as UK single, 08/86

"The Finer Things" / "Night Train" released as US single, 1986. Peaks at #8, spends 23 weeks on Billboard Hot 100 charts. Peaked at #1 on Billboard Adult Contemporary charts. Peaked at #5 on Billboard Album Rock charts.

 

"Back in the High Life Again" / "Night Train" released as US single, 1986. Peaks at #13, spends 21 weeks on Billboard Hot 100 charts. Peaked at #1 on Billboard Adult Contemporary charts. Peaked at #19 on Billboard Album Rock charts.

 

"The Finer Things" / "The Finer Things (instrumental) " released as UK single, 1987