You Covered My Clam

by The Tex Pistols

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"The Tex Pistols" existed for one reason: to have as much fun as it was humanly possible on stage. It was the early '90s and we were all busy: Tom and Marty were playing in numerous local jazz and rock bands, Paul had a thriving solo career (when he wasn't hanging out in Mexico), Frank spent most nights playing country bars, and I was playing with Southern Light.

From the start our method was simple: anyone could bring any song to the band at any time and we'd play it. Often we would play a song for the first time while we were on a gig! Unlike the highly rehearsed groups we all played in, the Pistols improvised everything.

We'd do crazy stuff with standards; like playing "Blue Monk" as a polka or turning the Star Trek theme into a samba. With an ace like Frank on the steel, you can bet we played a lot of Western Swing, too. Paul and I were both writing like crazy.

In '94 Frank purchased a brace of then revolutionary ADAT digital recorders and the Tex Pistols were tapped to test them out. We chose ten songs - everything from Bob Wills and Monk to originals - playing everything live with minimal overdubs.

There was no intention of ever releasing the album, although Frank did print up a number of cassettes to hand out to our friends. The title comes from something Marty said to me when we were listening to playback; apparently I'd managed to hide some mistake he'd made. Clams are us

Sadly Marty died in 1996 and we did not have the heart to keep the group going.

Thanks, Marty, for one of the most enjoyable musical experiences imaginable.

Please note that two of Paul's songs are not included in this version of the album.


released November 2, 2015

Marty Ruddy: Bass
Tom Freeman: Drums & Vocal Noise
Paul Jenny: Trumpet, Guitar & Vocals
Frank Sullivan: Pedal Steel, Dobro & Banjo
Mark Nelson: Guitars & Vocals
with Emy Phelps: Vocals



all rights reserved


Mark Nelson Ashland, Oregon

I'm a multi-instrumentalist & author with a solo recording career going back to 1979.

Here are some samples of music I've written or performed over the years for various side projects.

Happy listening!
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Track Name: Average Guy
I'm an Average Guy
© 1994 Mark Nelson

I'm an average guy, and I'm getting by
But I take Tylenol, instead of gettin' high
I used to party and have chicks galore
and I could eat anything in the grocery store
But I don't have time to do that no more
Yuppie I O Kai Yay

Yes I once was wild, but now I'm mild
From trying to toilet-train, my inner child
I followed my bliss down a one way street
I read the auras of everyone I meet
And I'm fanatical about the foods I eat
Yippie I O Kai Yay

Well my guru said, to clean out my head
So I hit the road, with the Grateful Dead
I spent all my money on tie dye shirts
As I cruise around in a van from Hertz
And I measure my drugs in megahertz
Hippie I O Kai Yay

I'm a New Age guy and I had to try
Every passing fad, that came across my eye
I've read Iron John, and Merlin Stone
Got a crystal and a black cat bone
I’ve got real estate in the old ozone
Yippie I O Oy Vey
Track Name: Roly Poly
Roly Poly, eatin' corn and taters
Hungry every minute of the day
Roly Poly, gnawin' on a biscuit
Long as he can chew it it's OK
He can eat an apple pie and never even bat an eye
He likes everything from soup to hay
Roly Poly, daddy's little fatty
Bet he's gonna be a man some day

Roly Poly, scrambled eggs for breakfast
Toast and jelly twenty times a day
Roly Poly, eats a hearty dinner
Cuz it takes lots of strength to run and play
Pulls up weeds and he does his chores
And he runs both ways through all the doors
He works up an appetite that way
Roly Poly, daddy's little fatty
Bet he's gonna be a man some day
Track Name: Honey Is It Safe?
Honey Is It Safe?
© 1994 Mark Nelson

Well I just came in here because there's nothing on TV,
And I keep staring at my finger, where her ring used to be.
I could not believe my luck, when you sat down and said "hello,"
And now it's getting late, and there's just one thing I must know.

Honey is it safe to go home with you tonight?
I wonder, should we make love, or should we say goodnight?
Now I'm not afraid of loving you, but I'm afraid of what that love might do
Honey is it safe to go home with you tonight?

Now you might be a fugitive from some Arab mob ,
Or a corporate attorney working on a blackmail job;
A heavy-metal Satanist trying to pull a voodoo hex,
Hell, after all I've seen on Oprah, I don't even know your sex.

Well I hope you don't mind, if I act a little shy,
But the rules just keep on changing no matter how hard I try.
I'll admit that I am flattered by what you'd like to do with me.
So won’t you please fill out this questionnaire about your sexual history?
Track Name: Monkey Hips and Rice
Geneva called me on the telephone this mornin’
She told me that she had something good to give me
I could hardly wait to get to my Geneva
And if I told you what she had for dinner, would you believe me?

It was monkey hips and rice
Monkey hips and rice
Monkey hips and rice
Monkey hips and rice
Ooh wee I didn’t wanna believe it
Monkey hips and rice

I said mm-mm-mm, this is good.
I’d eat some more if I could.
I didn’t know what it was that I was eatin’ but the knife and fork, they really took a beatin’.

(Repeat Chorus)

When Geneva told me what we had ate for dinner.
Man I left my chair and I beat it out of town*
But Geneva, darlin’, don’t you know that I still love you
But when it’s time to eat I just won’t be around

(Repeat Chorus)
Track Name: Rugged Rubber Lover
Rugged Rubber Lover
©1994 Mark Nelson

Well, I answered an ad in the classifieds that said is your love life shot?
The package came; I don't know what it is but I sure know what it's not.
So I took it out, and I plugged it in, and I filled it up with air.
She's my five foot two - and I made her with glue - electric love affair

Rugged Rubber Lover---Rugged Rubber Lover

Now every night I got a date with my silicon beauty queen
when we go to a dance we know all the steps, we fit in any kind of scene
She's sophisticated, suave, and always in style, the perfect executive wife
And I can play with my toys like all the rest of the boys
knowin' I got it made for life

Rugged Rubber Lover---Rugged Rubber Lover

One night she said "Boy, I've had it here with your Barbie Doll Playboy jive
And I've got better things to do than to wait for you
to treat me like I am alive.
So so long, au revoire, see ya later, sayonara, crying won't make me stay--
If you'll step aside, I'd like to catch my ride...I got a better offer any way"

Rugged Rubber Lover---Rugged Rubber Lover

And that was the end of my inflatable friend
I could chase her but I don't wanna
Last I heard she's doing well--singing backup for Madonna
Track Name: I'm a Guy
I'm a Guy
© 1994 Mark Nelson

Gypsy woman told my mama on my birthin’ day,
"You got a boy child comin’ gonna be a CPA"
Well, I was born for success got a plastic spoon in my mouth.
Come on all you people, let me tell you what it's all about.

I'm a guy
I spell G--U--Y

I can go to work from nine to five.
I make enough money to keep nine or ten people alive.
I can go to the club I play about eighteen holes,
Impress the caddie with my self-control.


I can walk that walk with my cheeks pulled tight,
Walk in a bar and avoid a fight
Look in the paper and predict the rain
There's fifty million of us and were all about the same

Yes, I am a guy….
Track Name: Bayou Dinner
Bayou Dinner
© 1994 Mark Nelson

All across the country when it’s time to eat,
All the people want a Cajun treat.
You can read all about on the printed page
They say the Bayou cooking is the latest craze

I wanna Bayou dinner, down in old Louisian’
Go to the fais do do in my old pirou, come on and take my hand.
I wanna Bayou dinner, something spicy tonight,
I want a jambalaya and a pecan pie, I wanna Bayou dinner tonight.

Well let’s go down to New Orleans
Cause you’re the sweetest Dixie chicken that I’ve ever seen.
Is it Tabasco on your lips that makes your kisses so hot?
I love the way that you stir your pot.

You got the blackened fish with the sauce so red,
You got the old crawfish and you suck the head.
You got the file gumbo alligator stew,
You got the Cajun waiter asking, “How’s by you?"