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by Ben Sollee



A very special thanks to DJ 2nd Nature and DL Jones for their generous time and creative energy helping to crack the code on what Inclusions was to become.

This record embodies the people, places, and things of my life. Whether intentional or incidental, their inclusion has come to define much of whom I am. So, I could very easily give thanks to everyone who has ever been a part of my life in any way. But today, now, in this tiny space I must thank my manager and friend, Jeffrey Smith, for being the first to believe in this project. Thanks to my Jedi-like producer, Duane Lundy, for his unique vision capturing and sculpting the sound of Inclusions and to his assistant Mike Burress. Thanks to Phillip March Jones for his friendship and brilliant artwork. Thanks to my mentor and big brother, Jon Rieger, for his unwavering support. Thanks to Katie Benson for her faith and tenacity in this and other projects. Thanks to Marianne and Jim Welch for their encouragement and for letting a cellist bang around on their piano. Thanks to Dr. Campbell for sharing his wonderful timpani with us for “I Need.” Thanks to all the folks at Crash Avenue Publicity and Thirty Tigers for helping tell the story of this music. And, deeply, thank you to my wife, Caitlin, for giving so much to my art and family.

A special thanks to the musicians of Inclusions for their time and creativity: Jordon Ellis, Harry Pickens, Cheyenne Mize, Emily Hagihara, Kevin Ratterman, Justin Craig, Scott Wilmoth, and Jacob Duncan.


released May 10, 2011

Produced by Duane Lundy

Music and Lyrics by Ben Sollee, with lyrical contributions by Morgan O’Kane on “Captivity.” Music and Lyrics for “I Need” by Ben Sollee and Cheyenne Mize.

Inclusions was recorded and mixed by Duane Lundy at Shangrila Studios in Lexington, KY. Additional recording for songs “Huddle on the Roof” and “Captivity” by Kevin Ratterman at The Funeral Home, The Quilt Box, and The Garden in Louisville, KY.

Mastered by Gary Lurssen at Lurssen Mastering.

Artwork by Phillip March Jones
Layout and design by Carly Schnur


all rights reserved



Ben Sollee Louisville, Kentucky

Born and raised in Kentucky. Learned to play cello in Kentucky. Learned to sing in Kentucky. Still lives in Kentucky... will likely always live in Kentucky.

For the Ben Sollee Mixtape please visit: bensolleemixtape.bandcamp.com/releases
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Track Name: Close To You
Close to You

Sometimes, I wear feathers to feel close to the sky
When I turn off the lights I am part of the night
I’ve been layin’ next to you just to see if it feels right

I want to be close to you, but you’re miles away

Spent all my money to see how it feels to be poor
Been wracking my brain trying to read this water-stained score.
When am I gonna learn it ain’t about me…
It’s about You

I want to be close to you, but you’re miles away

I picked up a shovel to feel close to the earth
I’ve been running round in circles to find my way
There must be something I can do
To make things better

I want to be close to you, but you’re miles away
Track Name: The Globe
The Globe

I guess they never told you how the Globe burned down
But it ain’t no secret, just ask around

Some heart-sick man fed up with his fate
Torched it to the ground in a desparate state
He’d grown tired of the tragedies
Tired of the death
Tired of watching Romeo take
One last breath

For something as crazy as love

The gave him all the books, but never taught him to read
So when she first kissed him, I heard him beg and plead
He saw the storm on the water, he felt every swell
He was on top of a mountain then in the belly of a whale

‘Cause some days it’s a fountain
Or an artesian well
Sometimes it’s a bag of bricks
Or some kind of spell

There’s nothing as wild as love

He wasn’t much for religion, but he learned to pray
For occasions when the wine led his mind astray
He built a chapel for his conscience, a shack for his regrets
Sent desire to an island still he could not forget

The sound of her touch
The color of her song
A jumble of words
Where a space belongs

For something as simple as love
Track Name: Hurting

Someone's taken the boy from your face
Traded your eyes for those that have seen
The shade of your innocence consumed in heat

You put your hands in your pockets
Buried as deep as they will go
You're gonna find a reason
You won't be at the show

I can see the patterns
I can feel the repetition
…you’re hurting

Something's perched there on the steeple
You let your eyes follow it away
Kick the rocks down the road
There’s no use to pray

Some days you won't remember
But most days you can't forget
How they pulled you from the water
Separated from the rest
“Who makes these rules? Who’s keeping tab?”
You’re looking for answers
Where there’s none to be had

I can see the patterns
I can feel the repetition
…you’re hurting

It’s gonna be alright, it’s gonna be alright

Someone's taken the boy from your face
Traded your eyes for those that have seen
Track Name: Embrace

If ever your hand should tremble
And reach for my battered knee
If ever your heart should shudder
Embrace your thoughts of me

If ever your memory should warm
Your chest where I once kissed
If ever my name should fall from your tongue
Embrace your thoughts of me

If ever you should forgive me
For my youthful ignorance
If ever a man should sprout from this boy
Embrace your thoughts of me
Track Name: Bible Belt
Bible Belt

Bought an old tux coat at the vintage store
Had a few holes in it from the man before
You wore a champagne dress
Bought it at Target cause it cost less

Rented an old house with spiral stairs
Watched you walk down them with flowers in your hair
Four months ago, I didn’t know your name
But I guess even as strangers we rattled the cage

There’s a few folks whisperin’
The billboards say what they won’t
We didn’t ask your permission
I won’t wear your bible belt

Our baby boy was born late that year
Our past caught up with us and caused a few tears
But I loved you like a hard rain
I just want to see you shed those chains

Everyone’s tellin’ us, “You better know His name.”
Every blind man needs his cane

Yours are not my traditions
I cannot cure your regrets
We didn’t ask your permission
And I won’t wear your bible belt
Track Name: Captivity

The heat of my brain turns the iron bars
Around me to dust, but when I come to my senses
It’s a winter’s day and
There’s just a little rust

I’m walking through the revolving doors in my mind
But no matter how hard I try
I can’t seem to get out the other side

Cause everywhere I look is looking back…

I’m a holy man in a stained glass cathedral
But when I look in the mirror all I see is
Cinder blocks and stainless steel

I got eight tailored suits waitin’ for me
When I get back home
…if I ever get back home

Everywhere I look is looking back to where I’m lookin’
When I get back to where I’m lookin’ to go

You can hold me captive for all these things I’ve done
But, I’m quite sure by now this ain’t the only race I’m gonna run

She said she could never forget the look of my eyes
It’s a misfortunate fortune that I’m in here
But at least I’m still alive
I once knew a man who traveled by the whistles’ aim
It’s been forty years now and
I just need someone to know my name

I sprint towards freedom, how else would you move that way?
But I ain’t as fast as I used to be and the dogs are catching up
But I’m gonna die either way so I might as well die trying

Everywhere I look is looking back to where I’m lookin’
When I get back to where I’m lookin’ to go
Track Name: Huddle On The Roof
Huddle on the Roof

||: Huddle on the roof child :||

Call it tribulations…
I know my lord wouldn’t treat me this way

||: Huddle on the roof child :||

Read about the rapture…
I know my lord wouldn’t leave me this way

||: Huddle on the roof child :||
Track Name: Cluttered Mind
Cluttered Mind

The golden pharaoh is on the road again
The cat is scratching at the door
In the other room Grandpa’s singing
Nintendo comes on channel four

An old cassette tape of Dr. King speaking
A broken Walkman on the floor
A heap of warm embraces
That don’t fit me anymore

Oh, what a cluttered mind

The rusty barrel gathers the rainfall
The broom is thrashing the floor
Grandma says her hands are aching
The tracking of a storm

A bee takes shelter in the window
Soon there’s hundreds more
I can see their wings beating
I can feel them swarm

Oh, what a cluttered mind
Track Name: Electrified

The trees are electrified
The streets that are electrified
Your ears are electrified
My voice is electrified

If your heart is unsteady, they can make it beat in time
If your mind confused, it can be clarified
If your old-fashioned, you will be modernized

Everything is electrified…

If you’re lost in the jungle, use the satellites
If you’re broke in the city, sneak on the bus line
You lost your job, cause it was mechanized
They said, “We have to compete when the market’s globalized”

Everything is electrified…

When my bare hands touch the base of you spine
I feel you shudder and you close your eyes
Move like a swallow and I’m Hypnotized

Everything is electrified…

Some folks are heroes, others may be vilified
Assess your losses, learn to diversify
Find your higher calling, and evangelize
Build your congregation, now you’re televised

Everything is electrified…
Track Name: I Need
I Need

You look so familiar
You move like I thought you would
You pray when you need to
You said what I thought you’d say

You are a believer
You stand up for what you think is good
We want all the same things
You say take it day by day

But I don’t know you like you think I should

I want you as much as you want me
I need you as much as you need me

You make your own dreams
You live up to them just like you should
You taught me to hold my own
But you never thought I could

You want to be simple
You reach for the light at hand
You tell me to move on
You know that’s not how it works

But I don’t know you like you think I should

I want you as much as you want me
I need you as much as you need me
I know you as well as you know me
I need you as much as you need me

You want me as much as I want you
You need me as much I need you
You know me as well as I know you
You need…

I need

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