Friday, December 30, 2011

Heading into to the new year

Howdy. I see it's been a while since I last posted, and I have SEVERAL things to talk about, so I think I'll use this post as a teaser or maybe a table of contents. Of course the real reason is so I don't forget to mention some things... :-)

So - in no particular order...

Few days in Nashville
New stage shirts
New boots for Vanessa
Joes crab shack
Don Schlitz at bluebird cafe
Yamaha FG-180 from pawn shop
Helping a young songwriter
Woodie Guthrie & his new years notes
My personal music goals
Writers nights in Dyersburg
Jimmy Hopper

As usual, comments are appreciated and if you have any ideas or suggestions please let me know!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Riding With Daddy

I know it's been a long time since I've posted, and I do apologize. I've ben busy with music (as well as business stuff) and have done some exciting things!

I wanted to post a link to another song that I wrote, but I wanted to take more than 140 characters to talk about it, hence this here blog post. :-)

First, I want to mention that I was fortunate enough to be in Nashville on a Monday night and got to play open mic night at the Bluebird Cafe. I was honored to just be there, then to share the microphone, but then to get a good response to my song and to make some new 'music friends...' It was truly awesome!

At any rate, I had this song written before then, but had not taken time to put in on tape, so to speak. This is, like my others, just a rough recording with a snowball microphone into GarageBand on my laptop. Nothing fancy, and I even had to stop for a minute while Vanessa's Halls pager went through it's 5 PM test cycle. :-)

I wanted to talk just a little about the creation of this song. I want to specifically thank Mr. Adam Levy - a wonderful singer/songwriter/guitarist who I've mentioned here before. I was going through one of the exercises that he mentioned in a blog post when I just started getting these words out and on paper - I almost couldn't stop, but at the same time it touched me so deep down inside that I had to step away from it...

The exercise? Take a song that you like and write the first line, then let your imagination (and subconscious) go wild and just write down as many lines as you can that match the tempo, etc. and just see where it goes. Well it went in about three different directions but when it kept coming back to my dad, who's now deceased, it was just a little too much for me, so I had to stop and put it aside. I then tried to change gears in my mind and that's when I literally wrote "the Pepsi song" in about 25 minutes. I really think my creative juices were flowing and that's what came out.

Anyway - fast forward a couple of months. I am trying another exercise that Adam (@stringjuggler on Twitter) mentioned and I wasn't really getting anything, but I pulled the notes to THIS song back out and it just started popping into place. I actually wrote probably two pages worth of "dialogue" and this is what it condensed to.

You'll probably notice right away that the song sounds a little like Paradise by John Prine. That's the song I started with on the exercise. I really feel that my melody (and especially the chord progression) changes drastically enough to not be a "copy" or even a "version," but that it still pays tribute to the song that influenced it. Family members, and long time readers, will remember that Vanessa and I sang Paradise for daddy's memorial service.

So - that's this song in a nutshell. It's all true (except one line, but I won't tell you which one and you'll never guess it anyway - and per Mr. Levy it's "close enough" to be true - it's true in spirit) and it's all from the heart. Hope you enjoy...

Follow the link below to my ReverbNation page - the name of the song is "Riding With Daddy"

Comments appreciated, and feel free to repost...