Archive for October, 2009

It’s really done now…

October 27, 2009 Leave a comment

I’m pretty proud of the darn thing. Cut the last song this morning…and it’s out there for the world now. I hope it does something to or for ya.

Time to sleep for a week. Then maybe write some more songs. Fun innit?

In a bit…


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It’s done…..sorta

October 26, 2009 Leave a comment

Ten songs. Complete. Cut. I’m done.

Except I’m not. I’ve decided it needs 11.

I’ve got a song called “The Hidden” that I tried once before and could never get a handle of. Now something is telling me that this is the one to end the record.

Except it’s not really a song yet. It’s just a fragment. A whisper. Maybe it needs to stay that way. It might be the best way to kiss Jimmy goodbye. Leave questions. Leave room for escape…..or total rupture. Finality sucks.

I need to think on it more.

In a bit…


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Out of town…

October 20, 2009 Leave a comment

I’ll be out of town for a few days. Got to get the music back in my head. If all goes well I’ll be able to finalize the CD by next week. Maybe getting out of dodge is just what I need. Some late planes and lost bags and confiscated mouthwash and wondering why to get where I’m going I have to go through Detroit. Getting nabbed for extra screening at the airport because I’m traveling alone and have a vaguely sinister middle-eastern type beard. Cab drivers who don’t speak English and need directions from you and seem mad that you have the temerity to ask them to take you anywhere. Room service and insomnia and plenty of late-night reading in a place where everybody talks kinda funny but still manages to be way more polite than the average Scrantonian, which admittedly isn’t that hard but still comes as a shock to a jaded Easterner from the slums. $2.50 Diet Cokes out of the 4th floor vending machine…..the one next to the ice maker that has been leaking for 4 years. And of course nightly video chats with my kids on Skype… of the few good things to ever come out of the internet…..the other being music you can…er…borrow.

I’ll have my legal pads and hopefully something will come to me as I sit and wonder how we can put men on the moon but not fly 500 miles without being delayed 4 hours and told at least 3 times that using your cell phone or Ipod might cause the plane to crash. If that’s the case, shouldn’t they be more concerned with screening for cell phones and Ipods than Scope and Crest?

It’s gonna be around 70 degrees today and tomorrow so I was hasty in saying summer was gone. It will never go away. I’m going to sweat and cut grass forever and dream of snow and skull caps.

In a bit…


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Here’s how it happens

October 16, 2009 Leave a comment

Here’s how it happens.

I’m working on a new song. As usual, I’ve got most of the lyrics written first, and I’m searching for a melody. It won’t come.

I’m sitting on my ratty office couch, playing an E chord and a D chord. Back and forth. Like a metronome. Something pops into my head. I start to hum. Then my daughter yells down the steps. It’s time to take her to basketball practice.

I dutifully get up, walk halfway up the steps, and realize that if I don’t record the little snippet I was just humming to myself, it’ll be gone.

So I spin around on the 6th step, and head back downstairs. A peek at the clock tells me I’ve got time. At least a few minutes. So I plop back down on the couch, grab my lyric sheet, dig out the old hand-held wave recorder that my dog has nudged between the cushions, and play the E-D combination again. I get to the 2nd to last line of the verse. An A chord is obvious. It fits. I sing the entire verse into the recorder. It’s simple. But it works. Much of the new record is based on the E-D-A progression. It’s as old as “Gloria” and as adaptable as a politician facing a voter’s revolt.

In the middle of the recording is my girl yelling for me from the top of the steps saying she’s going to be late.

I need a bridge for the song though. Now what?

You know what. The bridge will have to wait.

It’s the order of things.

In a bit…


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Summer is over

October 14, 2009 Leave a comment

Summer is over. With a vengeance. Fine with me. I hate summer. I long for the crispness of autumn, with it’s explosion of colors. The fireplace pilot-light has been lit. Those late nights, when the house is perfectly quiet and I’m warmed by the fire and a good book (or maybe a good game)…….nothing like it.

But now I’m hearing they’re calling for 2 inches of snow on Friday. This is a bit much even for me. The colors I want are red and brown and yellow. Not white. I’m still cutting my grass. I don’t want to break out the shovel. But so it goes. Up and down and ’round and ’round until you’re fortunate enough to be pointed in the right direction. Some dive-bomb into the ground thinking the highway goes on forever. Poor saps.

In the meantime, “Pete Townshend’s Ghost” roles merrily along, with or without me apparently. Still awaiting that final bolt of inspiration that’ll allow me to wrap this sucker up.

Watched my daughter’s basketball team get devoured by 30 points last night. Not good for the creative process.

In a bit…


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Re-cut 3 songs. Again.

October 12, 2009 Leave a comment

Re-cut 3 songs. Again. Totally re-arranged them. Again. I can’t make up my mind on anything. Slow. Fast. Harp. No harp. Strum. Pick. Scream. Whisper. Toss. Keep. Black. White. Send more troops. Nominate myself for the Nobel Peace Prize. It goes on and on.

Got 9 songs. Still need that last one. It’s gotta be killer. So far, my attempts to create it have been interesting, but ultimately horrifying from a songwriting point of view. I’ve cut the proposed title track 3 times, and it still sucks donkey balls. I know it’s a good song. I just can’t figure out how to play the damn thing yet.

Quite the little project I’ve placed upon myself. At the very least,  I’m driving myself completely batshit, so boredom is not an issue.

Some day’s you’re the windshield, and some days you’re the bug. I think Abraham Lincoln said that. Or maybe it was Dire Straits.

These songs will be what they will be. Nothing I can do about it apparently.

In a bit…


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Pushing a boulder uphill….

October 8, 2009 1 comment

I get the thing close….and then it rolls back down to the bottom and nearly flattens me. But I got a few more attempts left in me before my arms fall off.

Always remember…..if shit was gold the poor wouldn’t have assholes.

That’s the kinda world I’m forced to try to be creative in.

Just wrote and cut a song today called “Pills and Jesus”.

Four eyes and a mixed up head
beer cans underneath the bed
short skirts, fruit, and snakes
and time to transubstantiate

You think you have issues?

In my spare time I’ve also come to the conclusion that Joe DiMaggio killed Kennedy. It’s so obvious I’m surprised it took me this long to figure it out.

I’ve discovered Will Hoge too… about 6 of his records. Killer stuff. Honest straight ahead rock and roll….and he sings like Otis Redding just to make me even more jealous. His music is certainly helping me deal with my latest crisis, which is merely the potential for utter catastrophic financial ruin. Ain’t no big thang. I’m actually kinda amazed I’ve avoided this for so long.

Anyway….gotta twiddle some more.

In a bit….


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Still alive…

October 6, 2009 Leave a comment

Spent all day Sunday recording. Eight songs done. Like the flush of young love, I felt better Sunday night than I did on Monday morning.

Some good stuff there I think. Some dreck too, which needs to be addressed. Some re-writes are in order…..which I hate because I’m never sure if I’m trying to make a song better or make it less terrible.

Need a few days to clear the head. Then back in the cold water…

In a bit..


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October 1, 2009 Leave a comment

Have decided to scrap the recordings I have….and re-do everything all in a single session. That should give the songs some continuity of sound, which should help hold the perceived narrative together. Such is the hope anyway.

Still working on the last few songs. Getting more excited about it now. All I really need is about 6 more hours in a day…..and the ability to take caffeine intravenously as well as orally. I couldn’t imagine my giddiness if I was actually getting paid for this shit.

As I type this my dog is at my feet literally ripping the stuffing out of her stuffed blue bear. She may be trying to tell me something.

In a bit…


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