There Been Some Lonely Times is a song that I wrote a number of years ago while I was writing the One Life or The Lives of Chester Knowles novel.  Somehow the song found its way directly into the book (page 162). Click on the link below to hear the song.

The song is included in my Chester’s Songs CD, which I am releasing forthwith!

It’s a “soundtrack CD”, a “companion piece” to the novel. All the songs on the CD were mentioned in the book and are performed by yours truly, with some noble help from guitarist Preston Maybank.

See Bumba Books for details on how to purchase the books One Life or The Lives of Chester Knowles One Life The Phantom Speaksand its sequel The Phantom Speaks. The CD Chester’s Songs will be included in purchases of the hardcopy books.

For ebook version of One Life and ebook version of The Phantom Speaks, check out the links to Amazon Kindle, where they are currently available for 99 cents.

There Been Some Lonely Times is a simple song that only uses two chords. Call it elegant! The song is quoted in the book, so I felt a sort of obligation to record it and make it part of the reading “experience”. As for the other songs on the CD, they are simply songs mentioned in the book,”old-time” songs which I like to play anyway. I hope that the combination of music plus book is a big hit.

In the excerpt that follows, Willie Miles – an alterego to both our phantom hero Chester Knowles, as well as to the “deceased” Tony Santos, AKA the Lone Ranger – introduces himself to a small audience at a downtown Las Vegas nightclub. Willie and the little band then playThere Been Some Lonely Times. If you want to read more, you can buy the book on Amazon, or at any of the other on-line outlets. As I said above, the ebooks of One Life and The Phantom Speaks are just $0.99! And check out Bumba Books.

About the CD soundtrack Chester’s Songs: I did a CD for my first book Up in the Bronx, and the fact that I’ve done it again for One Life or The Lives of Chester Knowles is proof that I am crazy. I do these recordings because there are numerous mentions and quotes from popular music in my books. My characters, especially in the One Life and Phantom Speaks books, are particulary musical. So I play some of the songs that are cited in the books. Preston Maybank plays with me on just three song. I’ve played with some dubbing and multiple tracks, but it is simple, old-time music. Hopefully the book-CD combo will be pleasant.

Excerpt from One Life or The Lives of Chester Knowles (page 162)


Willie Miles steps to the microphone

“OK, so you want me to try to introduce myself. OK. Then, it’s me, Willie Miles: the Lone Ranger, the next incarnation, the one I had to be. Not everyone gets a second chance, a second chance at life. But I got it. I guess I’m lucky. Some people might get religious, others might get all paranoid, others might just flip out and never come back. Well, I did all of the above. Been there done that. And it looks like I wound up in Las Vegas. I have a friend who’s a psychologist who thinks that being in this band and playing the drums and ignoring the rest of life is a bit schizophrenic. Well, I disagree. I just call it good luck. Brains is better than brawn, my mother used to say. But luck is better than brains any day of the week is what I say. And rich or poor it’s good to have money. What more can I say than that?

(Here Willie introduces Georgia On My Mind which I suppose I should record and put on the CD too. In the book I printed out Hoagy Carmichaels’ lyrics. but I will skip over that section for now)

“Thank you very much,” said Willie soberly. He then walked out from behind the drums, picked up his guitar and arpeggioed a full-sounding, open-stringed sort of E chord, and then an open sort of A chord. He methodically went back and forth between the two chords while the other players gradually joined in. Soon, there was a gospel-type rhythm, and the entire room pulsed with excitement. Willie began with the refrain:

There been some lonely times

There been some lonely times

He told his story:

In the darkness of an alleyway

My life did pass before my eyes.

I saw my last chance slip away

I was shot down and I died

Yeah, there been some lonely times

Yeah, there been some lonely times.

But there’s no sense in complainin’

The river’s chilly and so wide

I spent my whole life in dreamin’

And now there’s no place left to hide

Yes, yes. There been some lonely times

Yes, yes. There been some lonely times


So please don’t ask me no more questions

I ain’t got time to tell no lies

I got a feeling in my heart

Same as the stars up in the skies

Hey, hey. There been some lonely times

Hey, hey. There been some lonely times

So it went. Willie sang lead, and Gene, the bass player, helped with the harmony.