On a recent trip to California, I got some time with my Grandfather. It was extremely important and meaningful for me as we've not spent much time together the last 25 or so years. I was off building my career on the road and he was living his life in California.
Somewhere between the talks we had during our time together...'the old days'....being dirt floor poor and barefoot in San Antonio...sneaking out at night to go hear live music down on the strip...leaving on his own as a teenager to build his life starting in the military, Korea, successful businessman, family, etc...
...and a visit to the old Pepper Tree in Vista, Ca where we (his family) were raised...
The place has been a staple of our farming town since the 1950's. Think of Al's place from Happy Days or the drive up diner's you see in movies that romanticize the 1950's...It's that type of place.
Nothing but great memories at the Pepper Tree...trees...groves...Grandpa had an avocado grove at one time...
I think that's where the lyrics for this tune came from. I say 'think' because inspiration isn't always obvious and hindsight is often strong when deciding what may have contributed to a song coming to life.
As Bill Withers has said: "Sometimes, something just crosses your mind"...
I hope you enjoy this tune and it's meaning. My Grandfather matters and has mattered so much to my life. His lessons on life, work ethic, self education, and business are priceless and this song goes far beyond my personal connection to the lyrics.
I think there are universal themes all over this one and I hope you can relate and enjoy it!
Thanks for reading and listening,
I may be a new branch, but I come from a very old tree.
Our roots are strong despite all the drought and weather we have seen.
And I don't believe in telling you lies. For our soil is full of integrity and pride.
And I'll work hard for you all my life.
With honor and faith on our side.
No corners too sharp, or too wide.
Just hard work. Honesty and pride.
We made our way from Texas. San Antone.
Planted more trees out in California and set up a second grove.
We worked that old land with bare hands.
On our knees in the dirt to give our baby trees a fightin' chance.