Archive for the ‘piano/vocal’ Category

in the cans

April 24, 2008

hello faithful readers/listeners. thanks for stopping by!

this weeks song, “in the cans” (mp3), centers loosely around my Christian faith, the commandments, death, and wanting to KNOW things that ultimately require FAITH because we they’re not provable. it’s an old dilemma for me, and an old one for humans in general i rekon. i don’t think i bring any fresh insight to this necessarily, but it’s been on my mind.


guitar, bass, drums, a coupla synths, and strings. the strings are new samples i’ve been working with, trying to get to sound realistic, which is tough. they’re a little fake in this one too, but i’m excited about figuring out ways to make ’em more believable. this music was written primarily from the piano, which often, for me, means that it moves around a fair amount harmonically.


i used a recording session as my backdrop or metaphor this time, which was fun. the main idea is that the process of learning how to live is similar to making music. the trial and error, the listening (through headphones in this case), copying others, and making mistakes on your way to a salvageable or even excellent take or idea. your guidance can be other stuff you’ve heard, friends who listen to your drafts, and rules for harmony, rhythm, line, etc. all the while though, there’s something you can’t explain about what you like. what sounds good or feels right.


two get in

January 17, 2008

welcome to week three of year two. this weeks song has had a few titles in the last 8 minutes, and i decided finally to go with this one:

two get in” (click it, i dare you)


piano/vocal. a little tune and changes that i was playing with this week at one of the studios where i teach. i liked the sort of old-timey character of the changes, and wrote a melody around ’em. that’s mostly it on the music end. pretty straight ahead.


the words for this one went through about three versions, from bad to not quite as bad to not as bad, which is what we have here. also, the focus/subject of the lyrics changed a bit between versions, but were all leaning on this idea of independence/dependence verses communal/isolationist if that makes any sense. i’ll post the words below…right now:

i had a bike
i rode it through the night
through the cold

i never showed
but i’m allowed some cold

but i tell the tale
when that avails
something about me

and maybe i share
because you weren’t there
to see me

perhaps with breaking ties
growing up
or something

but i’m alive
only because i tried
and someboday
helped me

so we call it names
think of things to blaim
for our calamities

and this interests me
but i’ll wait and see



the “out” in the all-caps ending section is meant to be an object, a noun. “out” and “in” being focus or attention. i never know how far into “what’s it about” to explain, but i’ll field questions about it. think of it this way, the original version was about how people’s attention for each other is a strange mix of out and in, and i was claiming that most people’s is more selfish than they’ll admit. but these lyrics got pretty dark and made me depressed for an afternoon, so i changed them a bit, realizing that they were heavier than i actually feel. i wasn’t writing from my feeling, i was creating one. so, this one has similar ideas about dependence, which i call “community” in this case, of which i’m a firm believer. let’s also just say that i’ve been feeling sort of anti-social lately and loving it. trapped in my basement making music. 🙂 sometimes, for some reason, it’s brilliant to be alone.  any day now, i’ll need to break out and kick it with the peeps, and thems the cycles.  🙂