somehow managed to write this today and then record a million takes of it on my front porch. chords are far apart, words are close together — pretty difficult for me to sing but we're getting there
First demo for RPM2016. 9 songs to go! [more inside]
Sailing Puget Sound and the San Juan Islands [more inside]
I decided to rearrange this song that I posted before to take out some of the crazy modulation and make it more straightforward. What do you think? [more inside]
One-take before-pants demo of a cynical little song that's been buzzing round in my head recently. Video here. [more inside]
This is a super-rough demo of a song I wrote yesterday for the 'Has Been for Years' song fight. It's a gothic little waltz using a resonator guitar, told from the point of view of a trooper in the 7th cavalry who was killed at Little Big Horn while waiting to be relieved by Reno's troops. Recorded before I put my pants on, for the challenge. Video proof is here. [more inside]
I've been trying to come up with a love story titled ROCK, PAPER, SCISSORS for a movie, but this fell out instead. Video link inside. [more inside]
Mrs. Archivist and I are collaborating on musical project. Recording includes acoustic and electric guitars, synths, traps, accordion, and cello. [more inside]
Another semi-autobiographical 1995 slice of cheerful melancholia. But a pretty guitar riff and one of my favorite choruses to sing, even if I never really could hit the last note. There's an electric version of this with more of a Big Star / Matthew Sweet feel, but darned if I can find it and anyway I like this one. [more inside]
Demo for a song about my neighborhood here in Los Angeles...with mouth trumpet!
Another entry in my recent demo series of posts. I posted a not-quite-done version of the track here, featuring piano and overly heavy drums. It's a song about the old classic video game "Snake". I'm sure I'll revisit the "proper" recording some day, but in the meantime, this is a nice performance. [more inside]
This is the demo I recorded for this song posted earlier. I slapped some kind of distortion effect over it to approximate the feel I wanted in the final version. Although it's too hazy-sounding and the vocals are nearly unintelligble, I really love a lot of things about this recording. It sounds like some kind of important uncovered secret to me. Anyway, this post is part of an "evolution of my songs" series I started here and here.
As a follow-up to this post, here is the demo I recorded for the song I posted a long time ago here. As before, the idea is to share something about the evolution of my songs for anyone who might care.
A demo that I later recorded and posted here. I'm posting this as a contribution along the lines of what others have done before me -- providing a window into my songwriting. Plus, I wouldn't be surprised if some prefer this version.
Just another folk-rock song about Jorge Luis Borges. [more inside]
I've always loved The Great Gatsby - it, and F. Scott Fitzgerald, have some significance here in Minnesota. I tried to get some personal elements into the characters for this. [more inside]
"Our minds are permeable to forgetfulness; I myself am distorting and losing, through the tragic erosion of the years, the features of Beatriz." -- Jorge Luis Borges [more inside]
A very lo-fi one-take recording by The Grandma Sylvias. Acoustic guitar and vocals only; all apparent distortion is coming from knobs turned very high. [more inside]
A song of loneliness and betrayal - sounds fun, right? [more inside]
An apology to mathowie
At empyrean's request. I needed a break from mixing my own songs anyway, so I threw together this quick & dirty cover of the Counting Crows song in 15 minutes, and uploaded it warts and all - one take off the top of my head, complete with missed notes, words, and chords. Enjoy.
I think this is still probably the best thing I've written. It's arranged sparely. It's really not anything more than a more nicely-recorded version of the two-track sketch that I record immediately after finishing writing a song just to have a rough sketch of the structure and main vocal melody. I haven't got a more full recording, because... Well, every time I try to flesh out the song, I end up feeling like I've bludgeoned something delicate. I'll get it some day, but for now, I think it works best when played simply.
The oldest song I've written that I'm still willing to play, think about, work on, etc., etc. It's also changed rather radically from its even shorter original form, and it's gone through a couple lyrical rewrites. It grew a beat about six months ago. I think this is probably the final form structurally and lyrically, but I'd probably work on it more if I thought I could improve the sound quality significantly.
I wrote this song for my ladyfriend a few months back, and recorded it just now. Happy Valentine's Day.
Just recorded a rough demo of this new love song for Edie Sedgwick.
Julia / you've got a lovely uvula / I wanna take you to Florida / so please say yes We'll start a family / play lots of D&D / and watch the Goonies / on VHS
Working draft of a song I'm engineering—written by friend and former bandmate Brian, who is on guitar and vocals, with keys added by moi. Feedback/criticism desirable. This is my first real effort to play producer/engineer to someone else's material.
This one is really lo-fi as I don't have the master tape and it's a 21 year old rough demo -- and I do mean rough. :) Recorded Spring 1985 in dorm room A-1016, The Evergreen State College. (More inside.)
Now that the summer's ending, there's a cold wind blowing in / So we've got to build some shelter, before it rains again
Ooh, bop bop, ba-ooh, bop bop. All I know is the road and I love you.
Acoustic demo about what I did during the Cold War.
Demo of a song about being far away from the spy you love. With acoustic guitar and tuba.