The Second City

by Shameem

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about

Australian neo-soul songstress Shameem presents a collection of passionate, personal, socially conscious and spiritually inspired original songs. This stylistically diverse sophomore album is best listened to from beginning to end.

credits

released January 16, 2015

All songs written by Shameem Taheri-Lee, except track 4 – written by Shameem Taheri-Lee and James Bryan, and tracks 10 and 11 – written by Shameem Taheri-Lee and Persian chant composed by Shidan Toloui-Wallace
Lyrics for Persian chant in tracks 10 and 11 taken from “The Seven Valleys” by Bahá’u’lláh

All tracks produced by Shameem Taheri-Lee and Rob Agostini *
Drums programmed by Shameem Taheri-Lee and Rob Agostini #
Strings for tracks 8 and 11 arranged by Shameem Taheri-Lee
* Except track 4 – produced by James Bryan
# Except track 4 – drums programmed by James Bryan

Shameem Taheri-Lee – lead vocals on all tracks except track 10; backing vocals on tracks 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, 11 and 14; keyboard on tracks 2, 3, 6 and 12; additional keyboards on tracks 1, 8, 9, and 11
Domenic Barrett – electric guitars on tracks 1, 3, 5, 7, 8, 9, 11 and 13; acoustic guitar on track 15
Harry Mitchell – keyboard on tracks 1, 5, 7, 8, 9 and 13; Rhodes on track 11; Hammond organ on track 9
Callum Morrison – bass on tracks 1, 3, 5, 7, 8, 9, 11, 13 and 14
James Bryan – electric guitars on track 4; bass on track 4; keyboard on track 4
Glen Scott – backing vocals on track 4; piano on track 4; Wurlitzer on track 4
Astrid Ripepi – vocals on track 7
Alix Hamilton – violin on tracks 8 and 11; viola on tracks 8 and 11
Laura McGrogan – ’cello on tracks 8 and 11
Shidan Toloui-Wallace – lead vocals (in Persian) on tracks 10 and 11
Bronton Ainsworth – live drums on track 13
Crowd vocals on tracks 14 and 15: Juliana Areias, Domenic Barrett, Luki Binol, Kate Janfaza, Harry Mitchell, Callum Morrison, Ehsan Nasheri, Zarin Salter-Beyzaie, Zarinne Seow, Jonathan Warwick, Penny Wong and Boshra Yazahmeidi

All tracks recorded by Rob Agostini at Soundbaker Studios, except:
Track 4 – instruments recorded by James Bryan at Kensaltown Studios; Glen Scott’s vocals recorded by Glen Scott at Kensaltown Studios; Shameem’s vocals recorded by Rob Agostini at Soundbaker Studios
Track 10 – vocals recorded by Louie Shelton at Gold Coast Studio
Mixed by Rob Agostini at Soundbaker Studios
Mastered by Lee Buddle at Crank Recording

Photography by Katey Manuchehri
Graphic design by Angelyne Wolfe
Dress designed by Ayesha Parsons of Decisively Ambiguous
Make up by Michaela Ivory
Hair by Kelly at Shendals Signature Salon
Shameem would like to thank Nasrin Manouchehri and Jaleh Sarvaryan for their assistance with the dress, and Naseem Taheri-Lee for her assistance at the photo-shoot

Supported by the Department of Culture and the Arts Western Australia

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about

Shameem Perth, Australia

Shameem is an Aussie of Chinese-Malaysian and Iranian descent, whose unique fusion of 90s R&B, 70s soul and a subtle twist of jazz is imbued with personal stories and socially conscious lyrics.

Shameem keeps a busy performing schedule, having supported such artists as Michael Bolton, George Benson, Ronan Keating and Belinda Carlisle, and toured in Australia as well as the USA and Canada.
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Track Name: Beautiful Soul
Every boy and every girl
Born with such a beautiful soul
Is taught ugliness in this world
Haven’t you heard?
Haven’t you heard?

Such an innocent creature
Born into this life
Carries no preconceptions, no wrongs
But we teach them to be cautious of the other
Not to just trust and love one another
“It’s dangerous”, we say

Every boy and every girl
Born with such a beautiful soul
Is taught ugliness in this world
Haven’t you heard?
Every boy and every girl
Born with such a beautiful soul
Is taught ugliness in this world
Haven’t you heard?

Haven’t you heard?

And wherever you go now
Those little eyes are watching
Every evil you harbour, they’ll see
Please don’t behave as if you think only of yourself
Without considering the needs of anyone else
You know what is at play

[Chorus]

It’s so absurd
How we teach them to choose darkness over light
They heed our word
When we tell them they should fight
Instead of stand up for what is right

[Chorus x2]

Haven’t you heard?
Haven’t you heard?
Haven’t you heard?
Haven’t you heard?
Track Name: Interlude I – Sunrise and Rain
I give thanks for the morning sunrise
I give thanks for the clouds of rain
I give thanks for the joy and peace in life
I give thanks for the times of pain
I give thanks...
Track Name: It’s All Illusion
We are taught from young that you must have fun
If you’re feeling down, feeling blue
Then there must be something that’s wrong with you
So we play charades, join in the parade
Wear our happy makeup and then
We will be kept safe in the masquerade

Pre-chorus:
It’s the face to meet the faces that I’ll meet
It’s the voice to speak the words I’ll never say
And the eyes to seek the things I’ll never try
But they lie

Chorus:
It’s all illusion
Quiet confusion
Optic intrusion
It’s all illusion

We could best get by on a natural high
Meditate, eat greens, volunteer, exercise
No, we won’t need an alibi
But we can’t keep pace in the cut-throat race
Trying to get ahead we fall back
And to cope we choose to self-medicate

[Pre-chorus]
[Chorus]

And if only we didn’t have to pretend
We might find that we’d sooner be on the mend

[Chorus x2]
Track Name: Under One Sun
Chorus:
It takes just one moment, just one dream
‘Cause you know we all need to be loved
We come from one ancestor, just one forefather
And one earth mother, under one sun

We are but one, we are but one
Don’t you know that everyone’s dreaming under one sun?

We are all living in an old, cold world
Where we have forgotten where we come from
We’re fighting each other like two schoolkids would
Ain’t it time that we learnt what we really should?

Oh, look what a mess we’ve made
Is it too late for us to change?

[Chorus]

We are but one, we are but one
Don’t you know that everyone’s dreaming under one sun?
Everyone’s dreaming under one…

Isn’t it funny how we seem to believe
Only certain of people deserve our love?
Wake up! It’s so obvious
It’s the same love we’re all made of

Oh, we’re still so far away
It’s not too late for us to change

[Chorus]

We are but one, we are but one
Don’t you know that everyone’s dreaming under one sun?
Everyone’s dreaming under one…

Sun, one sun…

[Chorus x2]

We are but one, we are but one
Don’t you know that everyone’s dreaming under one sun?
We are but one, we are but one
Don’t you know that everyone’s dreaming under one sun?
Everyone’s dreaming under one…
Track Name: Hole in My Heart
What can I do? My heart is dripping, leaking, and I
Just need a clue to fill the void
What can I do? The seam is ripping, breaking, and I
Will self-destruct or be destroyed

Maybe I will study real hard, become a doctor’s lawyer
And watch the dollars rolling in for the rest of my life
Maybe I will go to the mall, make fashion my employer
Let spending take me for a spin; will that relieve my strife?

Somebody help me find the remedy to take this emptiness away
There’s a hole in my heart, I don’t know where to start
Somebody help me find the right thing to come and brighten up my day
There’s a hole in my heart, there’s a hole in my heart

What can I do? My heart is dripping, leaking, and I
Just need a clue to fill the void
What can I do? The seam is ripping, breaking, and I
Will self-destruct or be destroyed

Maybe I will find me a friend to warm my coldest night-times
He’ll turn my insides out and I readily will succumb
And then when he don’t call me again, I’ll make the night my pastime
There’s plenty more where he came from, so much more it makes me numb

[Chorus]

Somebody help me find the remedy to take this emptiness away

[Keys solo]

Maybe there’s a chemical fix to dull the pain inside me
It leads to higher planes where I never ventured before
And then in the hysterical mix I’ll feel the madness blind me
My senses left me at the door; there must be something more
There must be something more

[Chorus x 2]

Somebody help me find the remedy to take this emptiness away
There’s a hole in my heart, there’s a hole in my heart
There’s a hole in my heart, there’s a hole in my heart
Track Name: Interlude II – Nectarines and Mangoes
I give thanks for the green grass that grows
I give thanks for nectarines and mangoes
I give thanks for all the people who’ve crossed my path
I give thanks to all the people who’ve touched my heart
I give thanks...
Track Name: Other Half of My Heart
No one knows my pain like you do (like you do)
No one feels my shame like you do (like you do)
No one shares my joy like you do (like you do)
No one sees right through my lies like you do (like you do)

Chorus:
You are the other half of my heart
You are the other half of my heart
You are the o-o-o-other half of my heart
You are the other half (other)
Other half, other (other)
Other half my heart

No one knows my pain like you do (like you do)
No one feels my shame like you do (like you do)
No one shares my joy like you do (like you do)
No one sees right through my lies like you do (like you do)

[Chorus]

If they could feel the vibe between you and me
They’d see that we are joined so mysteriously
Together we are sharing an energy
Intangibly attached are we
We swim together like the fish in the sea
Existing in a beautiful harmony
‘cause no one knows your heart quite as well as me
No one knows me like you do (no one knows me)

[Chorus]

You are the other half of my heart (you are the pen to my paper)
You are the other half of my heart (nearer to me than my neighbour)
You are the o-o-o-other half of my heart
You are the other half (other)
Other half, other (other)
Other half my heart
Track Name: Impostor
You are a sneaky weasel
With all your two-faced treason
Attacked without a reason
Didn’t leave a clue
I was your one defender
But you were one pretender
Who bit the arm that leant a
Helping hand to you

I watch the smoke clear
It’s just as I feared
The crime scene appears
The truth, apparent

You killed the man I love
You broke my heart in two
You killed the man I love
And the man I love was you
You stripped the colour from my life
And painted it dark blue
You killed the man I love
And the man I love was you

Impostor, you are
Impostor, you are
Impostor, you – who the hell are you?
Impostor, you are
Impostor, you are
Impostor, you

I stood by you when you were low
Gave you a leg up to go
But then you spat at me, so
I withdrew my heart
And now you come back in here
Want to return where we were
But that don’t work for me sir
It’s best that I depart

[Pre-Chorus]
[Chorus]

Love, love with all your soul
But don’t sell it to the traitor
Guard what’s good and true and whole
Or you’ll regret it later
[Guitar solo]

[Chorus]

Impostor, you are
Impostor, you are
Impostor, you – who the hell are you?
Impostor, you are
Impostor, you are
Impostor, you – who the hell are you?
Impostor, you are
Impostor, you are
Impostor, you – who the hell are you?
Impostor, you are
Impostor, you are
Impostor, you – who the hell are you?
Track Name: Give Me a Reason
Your word was a glass crystallised vase
You turned and you knocked it off my table
And I watched as it shattered, and there I wept
And the sky, it wept with me

Please give me a reason to trust you again
I loved you but then
It cost me a friend
It’s been a grey season since you went away
And I want to believe everything that you say
But you’re too afraid
To ever tell me
Please give me a reason to trust you again
Just give me one good reason

You lay on the floor, twisted and broken
They told me that you would not be woken
And I looked on you, shattered; you were so battered
The sky, it wept with me

[Chorus]

I wanna trust you, trust you again
I wanna love you, love you, oh when
Will you give me one decent reason?
I wanna trust you, trust you again
Because I love you, love you, oh when
Will you give me one decent reason?

[Chorus x2]

Just give me one good reason
Just give me one good reason
Track Name: Intro – A Lover Is He
نشان عاشق آن باشد که سردش بینی از دوزخ
نشان عارف آن باشد که خشکش بینی از دریا
که خشکش بینی از دریا
Track Name: Chill in The Fire
Search for my Love in the desert of the world
Each mirage is magic; each horizon tragic
I drink the seven seas and yet still I thirst
And the fire inside me has burned up all logic

Oh, it burns in me
Oh, the agony

To be so close to You, yet so far,
Ever wondering where You are
It's so mystical, this desire,
A chill in the fire
To be so close to You, yet so far,
Ever wondering where You are
It's a mystery, this desire,
A chill in the fire

Your venom is sweeter than honey on my lips,
Your destruction fairer than a hundred thousand lives
I've wounded wise men, I keep hostages
In the flames I'm freezing, in the sea I dry

Oh, it burns in me
Oh, the ecstasy

[Chorus]

A chill in the fire

Oh, a lover is he who is chill in hell fire
نشان عاشق آن باشد که سردش بینی از دوزخ
Oh, a knower is he who is dry in the sea
نشان عارف آن باشد که خشکش بینی از دریا
که خشکش بینی از دریا
Oh, a lover is he who is chill in hell fire

[Chorus]

A chill in the fire
Track Name: Interlude III – All the Love
I give thanks for all the love all around me
I give thanks for the truth that has found me
I give thanks for family and for friends
I give thanks for being able to give thanks
I give thanks...
Track Name: Expectation
Watching time fly away
Ages pass in one way

[Instrumental interlude]

Expectation, expectation
Expectation…

How long we have waited
How long we have waited

Children are born before our eyes
Mountains fall to their demise
The old are made fools; the young are wise
The sun runs a race across the skies
We look to the heavens for surprise
We search but we do not realise
That here on the earth the secret lies
Here on the earth the secret lies

Children are born before our eyes
Mountains fall to their demise
The old are made fools; the young are wise
The sun runs a race across the skies
We look to the heavens for surprise
We search but we do not realise
That here on the earth the secret lies
Here on the earth the secret lies

[Instrumental interlude]

How long we have waited
How long we have waited

How long we have waited
How long we have waited

How long we have waited
How long we have…
Track Name: I Give Thanks
I give thanks for the morning sunrise
I give thanks for the clouds of rain
I give thanks for the joy and peace in life
I give thanks for the times of pain
I give thanks for the green grass that grows
I give thanks for nectarines and mangoes
I give thanks for all the people who’ve crossed my path
I give thanks to all the people who’ve touched my heart

I give thanks, I give thanks
I give thanks, I give thanks
I give thanks, I give thanks
I give thanks, I give thanks

I give thanks for the green grass that grows
I give thanks for nectarines and mangoes
I give thanks for all the people who’ve crossed my path
I give thanks to all the people who’ve touched my heart
I give thanks for all the love all around me
I give thanks for the truth that has found me
I give thanks for family and for friends
I give thanks for being able to give thanks

[Chorus]

I give thanks for all the love all around me
I give thanks for the truth that has found me
I give thanks for family and for friends
I give thanks for being able to give thanks
I give thanks for every day that is breaking
I give thanks for every day that I’m waking
I give thanks for these gifts in which I’m partaking
I give thanks for the music I’m making
Track Name: Outro – Giving Thanks
I give thanks, I give thanks
I give thanks, I give thanks
I give thanks, I give thanks
I give thanks, I give thanks

I give thanks, I give thanks
I give thanks, I give thanks
I give thanks, I give thanks
I give thanks, I give thanks