Some recent discussion on MeFi about the band a-ha reminded me that I'd recorded this acoustic cover of one of their songs a long time ago. This is actually based on an arrangement by Kings of Convenience, who made some interesting changes to the original song structure. Me on vocals and guitars (nylon-string and steel-string). [more inside]
Acoustic guitar and voice. Pretty straight as far as my memory of the proper song goes. [more inside]
Another weird, haunting indie folk song from yours truly! There is also a weird, haunting music video located here. This is all part of my first official release, which I am super excited about, under my stage name MK Ellison.
"'I will work for honey!' This girl looks at me and goes, 'what?' I go 'yeah, it goes like this.'" [more inside]
It's been a while since I posted any of my new songs here. What do you think of my kind of new direction (and quality of the recording)? Alternative folk-ish, acoustic song with clean vocals, guitar, mandolin, harmonies. Sounds happy but the lyrics are not. [more inside]
Not sure if I can do it justice, but I have loved this song every since I first heard Seven Swans in my college days. Light, soulful cover of a modern classic. I've messed with the harmonies a little, so some of the chords are more dissonant (but in a watery, calm way, not a harsh way, if that makes any sense).
An original arrangement of an old cowboy song, from the new album High on the Hog by Corwin Bolt & the Wingnuts. [more inside]
Wish I didn't have to keep writing songs like this. [more inside]
A quick, old tune
Topical song. Recorded live in one take, fast and dirty, at home. Vocal, three-string guitar and stompbox, all coming out of a 15 watt VOX guitar amp. I videoed the performance too, which you can see at Facebook or YouTube. If you'd like to download an AIFF audiofile, you can do so at SoundCloud. [more inside]
As long as I am posting moody, folksy songs with voice and guitar...here's another one!
(That's the title, I have not in fact been drinking all day...) Country-ish, imagine you and your man are on the outs and you're feeling a little bitter about it.
A song written for my 4 month old daughter. [more inside]
Another acoustic song! I'm really digging this thing where I limit myself to two strings, probably because I'm lazy.
Improvised acoustic guitar / singing. Recorded on phone. A bluegrass standard, but I'm playing it as a stream of consciousness improvisation. Usually these days my playing is pretty much by the book, but here I was thinking about ecstatic / outside players like John Fahey and Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. No patching in. Only one take. No overdubbing. Get it right in the moment. Be real and accept flaws as long as they don't spoil anything important. [more inside]
Acoustic folk heartbreak. [more inside]
I wrote this with my brother back in 1993 on a night we were thrown out of home and had no where to go. We spent the night sleeping on the steps of McPherson library in Philadelphia. [more inside]
My entry for the May/June 'City Songs' challenge. [more inside]
This song addresses the situation in Ferguson and the frightening militarization and violence of today's police forces across America. I made a video for it, which you can view here.
Here's a live recording of a song I premiered at a gig two nights ago (July 18, 2014). The bassist accompanying me is Keigo iwami, from the Swamp Root Jimmies. The song is anti-war, anti-greed, anti-death. Video here.
A waltz written by a friend of mine in honor of our fiddle teacher, Sarah. [more inside]
An quickish acoustic one, with lyrics about my dad, his melanoma, and a couple of other things. Has probably the most acrobatic bridge bit I've ever done. [more inside]
Wrote this about the execrable Supreme Court ruling of April 2nd, 2014. Video here.
A song from my album that I've just released through Tunecore. If you like it there's more listen links at my site www.groklock.com. Let me know what you think!
In memory of Pete Seeger, a two-uke rendition of one of his best-known tunes. Video here if you're interested. [more inside]
Just got a new zoom h6 to record with. Guitar, vocals, whistling, and a 1930's Dogherty pump organ. [more inside]
This is S&H, from a show we did just the other night here in Tokyo. I'm so digging working with percussionist Habu Hiroshi, he's really bringing the groove. Video here.
Quiet guitar for a quiet afternoon. [more inside]
Well it isn't the first time I've posted this song to Metafilter Music. Nor is it the second, third or fourth. But, in my defense, I'd say that all of these versions are, well, rather different from each other, in their various ways. This fifth one is from my duo band S&H, and was recorded live at a little African restaurant in Shinjuku. Video here.
Acoustic tune for this month's challenge [more inside]
A folk-song mainly about St Paul's Cathedral and its history, with themes of love, hope and continuity. [more inside]
Last of the tunes recorded earlier this month in a little house in the mountains. Vocal and stick dulcimer. A very prolific songbird who was just outside can be heard throughout this performance. Video here.
Ever since I first saw John Lee Hooker's utterly captivating, almost terrifyingly powerful performance of it, I've been a lover of this song. RL Burnside covered it as well. This is my humble (and following those two performances, I really mean that) offering, from a little house in the hills of Nagano prefecture, Japan. Video here.
Another tune recorded the other day at a little house in the woods. Just vocal and stick dulcimer, and a little bird outside that joins me for the very last note. Video here.
I did a youtube recording of this lovely tune. Decided to give it a pass through the iPad, since I'm on a roll lately. Folky ballad. [more inside]
This is from our JUST released album, The Story Is Everything. We're trying to beat a crazy deadline and sell 17 CDs before the end of the day tomorrow (Thursday, May 17). If we do it, we can bring physical discs to the Kerrville Folk Festival next weekend. Here's the link, should you happen to feel generous. Thanks for listening!
Best Friends Forever - we always will be. Best Friends Forever. Just you and me.... Written and performed by Julian Mount (aka: JtJ)
This is a dark folk song about Depression-era New Orleans. It's a collaboration between my wife and I.
Dave van Ronk cover
It's been five years since my last attempt at arranging Auld Lang Syne. I thought I might try to start a small fire under it this year. [more inside]
After seeing the Muppet Movie this weekend, I was reminded of a project I led back in '08 called Doctor Teeth. This Tom Waits arrangement is one of a few recordings we made, despite having never played a show. [more inside]
Another acoustic guitar thing. [more inside]
Recorded onto an audio cassette in about 1982 from a radio/cassette player with built-in mic. As a bit of a laugh between recording our more earnest efforts at Irish folkmusic (posted earlier here).The Early Puritans we called ourselves up there in Stockholm. Does it count as a September offering? [more inside]
Recorded this at home the other day, using the stick dulcimer and a stomp box. Lyrics and video here.
Another tune recorded in the woods of Nagano Prefecture. Video here.
How I spent 4 minutes and 52 seconds of my summer vacation. Recorded yesterday, in the woods. Video YouTube or Vimeo.
I seem unable to cover songs (even those I hate) without making them sound completely earnest.
i put down the phone / left a bag of cookies on the corner / filled my brain with a soft white light / sent all my 8-track tapes / to my cousin down in mississippi / took my foot off the pedal, and gave up the fight... A brand new song, live in Tokyo, May 1, 2011. Video here.
Recorded live at Super Deluxe, Tokyo, April 22, 2011. I'm playing strumstick and stompbox. Video here.
Here's another tune from an earthquake/tsunami disaster relief benefit show that i was part of on April 8, 2011. This one is a traditional gospel number. Video here.