7.29.09 (Song Twenty): One Foot

I didn’t get to upload this one last night, so here it is.  I was trying to write an anthem of some sort, and it might work with a little more instrumentation.  I recorded it late last night, so I had to use my electronic keyboard, and I couldn’t find the sustain pedal, which really takes away from the piano-ey sound.  I’ve had a variation of the chorus sitting around for a few years, but no verses, so I finished it off.

One Foot

You say you’re tired
And you can’t go on
And the road before you
Looks so long
But don’t give up
Before you begin
Just take a step
Then take a step again.

And put
one foot
in front of the other
Little by little
Day by day
one step
and then take another
Before you know it
you’ll be on your way

Set your eyes
On the horizon
and put your boots
on the ground
And get your legs
to start to moving
And there’s no telling
What can be found


It’s a long way
And it will be tough
But you’ll get there
Soon enough
It ain’t easy
That’s for sure
But anything worth having
Is worth working for.

Published in: on July 30, 2009 at 9:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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7.28.09 (Song Nineteen): Part of You

I’m pleased enough with today’s song, “Part of You”.  It’s syrupy and barely over a minute long, and my self-harmony is not quite there, but with some practice, a bridge, and maybe some keyboards I think this one might turn out.

Part of You

If I should ever leave you
I want you to know
I take a piece of you with me
anywhere I go

I take a piece of you with me
I thought you wouldn’t mind
‘Cause when I go I always leave
a piece of me behind.

If I could,
I would stay
But you and I both know that soon
I’ll have to go away
But be sure
When I do
You’ll always be a part of me,
And I, a part of you.

Now, I hardly remember
The man I used to be
I bore a hole that was the shape
of what you gave to me

It’s odd that it worked out like this,
these things so rarely do
but you were missing something,
Something that I brought to you.


Published in: on July 28, 2009 at 10:19 pm  Leave a Comment  
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7.27.09 (Song 18): NyQuil-Headed Baby

It looks like I took Friday off–some life came up and I didn’t get it done.  I’m hoping to catch up by the end of the week.

For today, I was hoping to capture the spirit of Whiskey Headed Woman and Canned Heat Blues, two classic blues songs, and I think I’ve done the form justice.  I’m not in love with the chorus, but for a one-day project, it’s not bad.

NyQuil-Headed Baby
She don’t drink liquor and she don’t take dope
She don’t use cocaine and she won’t smoke rope
There’s only one thing for when she needs a little something
She ain’t satisfied until she’s had some Robitussin

She’s my NyQuil headed baby
She’ll drink Dimetapp, too
and if she’s feeling fancy she could go for
the Theraflu

Her eyes may be bloodshot, her hair may be a mess
But you can be for certain that her cough is supressed


Don’t bring her any eucalyptus cough drops
Don’t you rub no camphor oil on to her chest
Just bring her a bottle of that syrup, boy
And she’ll take care of the rest.

Published in: on July 27, 2009 at 10:54 pm  Comments (1)  
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7.23.09 (Song Seventeen): I’ll Be There

I actually wrote three separate lyrics today, and this one is the only one with any chance of seeing the light of day.  I thought I’d wind up doing more genre excercises over the course of the month, but this one might be my first, with the possible exception of Psychedelic Santa, which didn’t really wind up being much of a genre excercise after all.

Piano and bass are played on the Yamaha MM-6 keyboard, harmonica played for real.

I’ll Be There

When it’s late at night
and there’s no one around
and silence surrounds you
and the lonely gets loud

You can call on me
When you get scared
Call on my darling
I’ll be there.

Look up in the sky
Look up at that moon
Sometimes don’t it feel
Like it’s looking down on you?


When it’s late at night
and there’s no one around
and silence surrounds you
and the lonely gets loud


Published in: on July 24, 2009 at 12:53 am  Leave a Comment  
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7.22.09 (Song Sixteen): Bachelor

Well, this is another one that lost something on the way to the tape.  I like the concept, and I even think the central idea for each verse is strong, but it would have sounded a lot better with a strict meter.  I just didn’t have the time to edit it, and it shows in my difficulty singing it.  Well, I think there’s a song there, and I’ll be editing a lot of these when the month is over.


You told me you had to go away
out of town on business, for a couple days
I was so excited when we said our farewell
But with you gone, I don’t know what to do with myself.

Won’t you remind me, what I used to do
Back in the days, before I met you
Once upon a time, I was young and immature
But I’ve forgotten how to be a bachelor.

I got all the action movies that you wouldn’t go to see
The Fists of Death and Under Siege and Squad Commander 3
But the sounds of breaking bones and screams could not compare
To the pleasures of watching “You’ve Got Mail” with you there.

A couple days of eating three square meals a day
of microwaved burritos, Mountain Dew and Tangueray
I was good and ready waiting for you to come home
Cause I am not cut out for this living on my own.

Published in: on July 22, 2009 at 9:51 pm  Leave a Comment  
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7.21.09 (Song Fifteen): Cans

This one was not very fun to write.  A good song about Michigan’s bottle return remains my white whale.

(Bring Back the) Cans

The fridge was empty and the cupboard was bare
I checked my wallet, there was nothing there
I flipped the cushions and I checked the couch
Not a penny or a nickel, and so now,

I’ve got to bring back the cans
Bring back the cans
Have you ever been there, when the times demand
That you bring back the cans?

I got ’em all together in some big garbage bags
Loaded up the car til the suspension sagged
I got the soda syrup on me, and I can’t say I was pleased
When I was attacked by a swarm of honey bees

I’ve got to bring back the cans
Bring back the cans
I’ve got the steering wheel sticking to my hand
As I bring back the cans

I filled up a shopping cart with clanking glass and tin
I pushed them to the register and turned them all in
The cashier finished counting, paid it out and off I went
With a pocket full of 4 dollars and 35 cents

I’m bringing back the cans
Bringing back the cans
Is there anything that’s more humiliating than
bringing back the cans.

Published in: on July 22, 2009 at 2:29 am  Leave a Comment  
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7.20.09 (Song Fourteen): Gertrude

This one is about the effects of love on one’s judgment.  One take, guitar and vocal into the Mac mic.


Is there any sound as sweet as when you’re name is spoken?
Is there a melody that can compare?
Your name dances in my head every time that it is is said
And so my love for you I must declare

Gertrude, oh Gertrude,
your name is like music to my ears
Gertrude, oh Gertrude,
It’s the only sound I want to hear.

I’ve known many Jennifers and several Suzannes
I’ve known Natalies and Juliettes
But those weren’t the girls for me, their names were a cacophony
While Gertrude sounds just like a string quartet

Published in: on July 20, 2009 at 7:10 pm  Leave a Comment  
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7.17.09 (Song Thirteen): Coffee Can (The Man in the Hole)

OK, here’s today’s entry.  If I were to go back and edit this one, I’d like to remove the fact that my leading man is a deadbeat dad, but there aren’t that many words that rhyme with “trailer court”.  I’ve had friends and relatives who’ve lived in trailer parks, and they always seem to edge up against some scrubby woods, often filled with old bedsprings, shopping carts, and pull-tab beer cans.  Seemed like a good setting for a story.

Coffee Can (The Man in the Hole)
I was on fire at the Indian casino,
Oh buddy, I couldn’t lose
I stumbled home with a bag full of money
and a stomach full of free booze.

Now I couldn’t stand to see all of that money
Bein’ spent on child support
I buried it all in big coffee can
in the woods behind the trailer court.

One of these days, one of these days,
I’ll hold the world in my hands
Everything will start to turn my way
When I find that old coffee can.

It wasn’t too long before I needed money
To fix the brakes on my Bel-Air
I took my shovel and I searched for hours
Couldn’t find it anywhere.

And so I go out every evening and weekend
Looking for a place I haven’t been
But when my shovel hits that can of Sanka
I’ll know that my ship has come in.


All of the kids in the trailer park tease me
They call me the man in the   hole
They ask if I’m trying to find my way to China
They ask if my mother’s a mole.


Published in: on July 17, 2009 at 9:34 pm  Leave a Comment  
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7.16.09 (Song Twelve): Do the Pirate

I’ve invited the people I know through FaceBook to check this project out so far, and I’m a little self-concious knowing that someone might actually listen to these.  I spent all day waiting for something better than this one, but it’s getting late and I don’t think it’s going to happen.  There are a bunch of GarageBand loops in there, and some parts I played using the QWERTY to program the instrument.  For some reason, this one and yesterday’s both have a nautical theme, but neither one references scurvy, one of my favorite diseases.

Do the Pirate

There’s a new dance, it’s the latest craze
Everyone’s been doing it for 3 or 4 days
I’ll tell you how to do it if you want to be hip
You got to rock back and forth like you’re on a ship

Do the pirate
Do the pirate
there’s a tune for you to hear
Now act like a buccaneer
Do the pirate

Now if you want to get the perfect pirate look,
Bend your fingers over so they look like a hook.
If you don’t have a patch, just squint your eye
If you don’t have a peg leg, bend at the thigh

Published in: on July 17, 2009 at 3:25 am  Comments (1)  
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7.15.09 (Song Eleven): Don’t Drink the Water

Well, some days you write a song just to have written a song.  This one is me thinking back to the first episode of the Voyage of the Mimi back in 2nd grade.  I was hoping to include some instrucitons on procuring fresh water, but it didn’t fit the rhyme scheme.  What can you do?

Don’t Drink the Water

If you are lost at sea
You’ll soon get thirsty
As you float on the waves
Hoping you will get saved
Take this advice from me

Don’t drink the water
It will not quench your thirst
Don’t drink the water
It will just make it worse.

As you drift away
You skin will slowly turn grey
You’ll get frustrated
and quite dehydrated
But remember what I say


As the sun beats down
You’ll prey that your raft runs aground
There’s water all round your ship
but you can’t take a sip
You’d be better off just to drown

Published in: on July 16, 2009 at 3:14 am  Comments (1)  
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