Posts Tagged ‘#songwriter’

I mentioned before that one of the more painful things about getting old is inheriting stuff from your friends that are either no longer able to access older technology or loved ones that checked out of life before you do.

Recently, many wonderful musical things of no real value have found a home in my house. Some make noise, some record noise, some avoid noise, but all have been turned into music by friends of mine for decades. The memories and cave-man-level responses to sounds from the past hits me hard. You probably grew up hearing these sounds, but you might have been in the womb or soon after to this world when hearing them. These toys literally created most of the pop – rock and country music you grew up to. The list is too long for TV and commercial applications.

Anyway, unless you know what this stuff is (and things weren’t small in those days) and how to make it work it might as well be a pyramid that becomes nothing a storage problem. As usual, I digress.

Recently, I was given half a ton of old 45 rpm vinyl records.

But not the ones you buy at a store. To avoid another really interesting connected tangent, I will simply say that these came from a company where my wife worked. It was one company and then absorbed then another company and Clear Channel picked them up when their critical mass became too big to ignore. I apologize for the brevity, as most people won’t be interested, but they conducted surveys for radio stations across the US.

They condensed the song – ALL of the songs you would likely hear on commercial radio decades ago – to a 5 or 10 second “hook“. Whatever it was that identified the song to listeners was the hook. They conducted thousands of live – in – person paid surveys across the country to get listener’s opinions of the NEW artist or POTENTIAL new hit. These are not for sale and not available at the stores. My people know I can still use vinyl and other technologies but more importantly I can take care of them.

This brings me to another tangent I cannot avoid. So many of the treasures I have been given are no longer operable or salvageable. A little more thought in storage would have turned so many of these treasures into true gems. Rust, mold, misuse – no use, all take their toll. My stuff still works. From the time I was in high school forward. I bought good equipment and accessories and I took care of them because I knew I could not afford to replace them.

I finally get to the point to this post. I have hundreds of records. My wife worked for years watching literally thousands of bands and their best efforts to make it big. Yes, I heard many of those as well. Some were interesting, some were cool and most were painful. But the thing I am getting to after listening to each 45 record after the other is a simple but powerful message if you are trying to ‘get a deal’: Don’t spend all your energy creating the GREAT HOOK. I hear failure after failure after failure trying to be something you are not. Maybe you have to be cute or edgy to get noticed. Just make it your own edge.

ANY of these bands produced records and demo’s that are much better than my in-home singer/songwriter efforts. They have money and backers and investors looking for the next best thing. But the great hooks are organic and time-locked so you are chasing a dream. So much potential dedicated to making your band sound like someone or something else already out there. To fit the cookie-cutter rather than make the cookie shape. It could be said I make the cookie shape and I am not famous. Mine is not a formula for success.

There are famous artists in this small collection so many do succeed, though I see so many failures because they are trying to find the magic lamp. Stop looking for it and create one for yourself. If it was that easy I would not be sitting here, lol. In the future I will share some of these records. They are not for sale, but I am not sure that means they are not for share.

Here is a record by Gipsy Kings I thought was pretty cool.

I long to feel weight on my shoulders
To wake in another day.
Dark clouds would be a blessing
To breathe air we didn’t make.

Haunted by dreams within other dreams
Tell myself again I’m not alone.
Every move must be planned
So there’s a chance of going home.

I know things will be difficult.
We are guided by different moons now.
The days are so long under dark skies
We are guided by different moons now.

Hours apart have turned to weeks
Trying to remember your voice.
Thoughts can be felt in an instant
You will always be my choice.

I know things will be difficult.
We are guided by different moons now.
The days are so long under dark skies
We are guided by different moons now.

This truth we’ve all known since the day we opened our eyes.
Nothing lives longer than lies.
Buried in facts we are told only a fool ever tries.
Still waiting for the surprise.

Somehow we put a price on the amount of hate.
Packaging love in a crate.
Out of my hands, everything has been left to fate.
Medicine is out of date.

Nothing Lives Longer Than Lies
So be careful what you say.
Nothing Lives Longer Than Lies
When you look the other way.

Strength is too often something others shove down our throat.
Weakness displayed by each vote.
Tossed out in the middle of winter without a coat.
Who knows if we can float?

Nothing shouts confidence like a man waiting to fail.
Spending time chasing his tail.
Promising everything’s good cause the check’s in the mail.
Picks up the finishing nail.

Nothing Lives Longer Than Lies
So be careful what you say.
Nothing Lives Longer Than Lies
When you look the other way.

Doesn’t matter if you are a scholar or a monk,
Rule number one: don’t say it when you’re drunk.
It’s not like you are on a planet saving mission
This is not rocket science, its simple division.

What is running through your head right now
Might seem universally important somehow.
But if you open up with one more rant
Your life will become a little discordant.

You worked real hard and have it all figured out
Only to find that’s not what it was about.
Knowing the secret doesn’t make you a king
As soon as you speak you have lost everything.

My frame of mind should have left me behind.
You always know how I feel about you.
Caught in a tsunami with no higher ground
Can’t imagine my life without you
Around.

So many things turned and twisted the wrong way.
Meet me in the middle and I will hold you all the way.
Feelings are like dreams that either fade at first light
Or scream like the devil beyond the night.

My frame of mind should have left me behind.
You always know how I feel about you.
Caught in a tsunami with no higher ground
Can’t imagine my life without you
Around.

I found a drawer full of lost keys.
So many things worth locking away;
All forgotten.

Each one closely holding memories.
Some were tarnished and worn thin;
Some wrapped in cotton.

And if it is the right key
I will hear the greatest song.
And if it is the lost key
I will try to play along.

There were more than I could easily count.
And I knew some of them must be mine;
Saving things.

Connected to lock or door not found.
Left to remind me of other days;
The bell rings.

And if it sings in the right key
I will hear the greatest song.
And if it is the lost key
I will try to play along.

I hold some in my hand for hours.
Much more than time has drifted by;
Unrecovered.

I remember a field covered in flowers.
But I know I’ve never been there;
Undiscovered.

I am working on a musical arrangement for lyrics I posted recently. It is not much right now. I have a piano and bass track using my MIDI keyboard, along with my vocal track for the melody line.

Enemies In Your Head by MSK

Here is to a great new year for all of us.

You don’t have to have money.
You don’t have to have fun.
Don’t even have to apologize
To anyone.

It’s not like it was funny.
You just didn’t think to laugh.
Never got the punch line
‘Til you were broken in half.

Screaming for what you could have had.
Or crying for what you’ve lost?
Holding yourself responsible
Crushed by unbearable cost.

You want to yell “that’s a lie”,
When you realize all of its true.
Like you’re watching a documentary
Made specifically about you.

Saying it’s impossible
Won’t make it go away.
The enemies in your head
Weren’t born yesterday.

The enemies in your head
Weren’t defeated yesterday.
The battle goes on forever
Or so the minstrels say.
Knowing you could lose tomorrow
Or the morning soon after.
This evening could all your dreams
Become nightmares of laughter.

The enemies in your head
Weren’t defeated yesterday.
Each morning you rise again
Seeing no other way.

The faith I have keeps falling apart
The pain we share I will turn into art.
Every day is difficult from the start
Feelings neglected soon buried in the heart.

People are struggling but we’re doing fine.
In our million dollar mansions

Drinking imported wine.
People keep struggling but we’re doing fine.

Can’t remember the last free moment
No crisis, no chore, no one to comment.
Starting from this path no choice would be different
All my efforts dreams and cries so easily misspent

People are starving but we’re doing fine.
It’s the way it is and has always been, 

So many suffer at Christmas Time.
People keep starving but we’re doing fine.

Help who you can but so many in need
While men trample where you plant your seed.
To pay for survival you sacrifice and bleed
Only to smother from the consolidation of greed.

People are dying but we’re doing fine.
But the uneducated and the lazy, 

They are ruining my Christmas Time.
People keep dying but we’re doing fine.

The faith I have keeps falling apart
The pain we share I will turn into art.
Every day is difficult from the start
Feelings neglected soon buried in the heart.

I love to cook and have all the gadgets
Spices and fresh foods from famous markets
Artisan breads and cheeses and finest creams
A few rare herbs and aged meats.

Tempted by smells slowly drifting my way
Each ingredient calls for its place on the plate
Planning, preparation and a little luck
A masterpiece awaits each of us.

My wife looks up and tells me again
“Nobody cares, so stop your bitchin’”.
But it’s really hard to be a good chef
Life sucks when you hate your kitchen.

The room glistens with silver, copper and glass
I can sift and bake to my heart’s content
Razor sharp cutting knives dazzle in the light
A measuring cup or spoon for everything

But there’s no place to stand
And no place to clean
Nowhere to put things
If you see what I mean.
Even working by myself
It’s too crowded to move
The shelves are so tall
Like they have something to prove.

My wife looks up and tells me again
“Nobody cares, so stop your bitchin’”.
But it’s really hard to be a good chef
Life sucks when you hate your kitchen.

When you think you are making the right decision
Everybody you connect with is on your side.
Well, buckle up your seat belt and hold onto your cap
You don’t know it, but you just walked into a trap.

It seems like you are making your own choices
Everything is going down just like you planned.
Suddenly you hear a loud and powerful snap
Now you know it, but you just walked into a trap.

A trap you can’t get out of
A trap you couldn’t see
A trap of your own making
Trapped for eternity.

Still struggling and squirming trying to believe
Yellin’ ‘I don’t understand’, makes you look like a fool.
All bundled up nice with a box with and pretty wrap
However you say it, you’re stuck in a trap.

Lashing out at anyone that comes even close.
You keep pushing yourself further and further away.
The box is smashed and you’re hanging from a strap
However you play it, you’re stuck in a trap.

A trap of your own making  

Trapped for eternity.