This is one of the first songs I ever wrote. It's called "Future Knocks", written back in 1992. The verses sound sad, because they were about growing up, the choruses are anything but though, about holding on to the moment. [more inside]
pop song with a train beat feel [more inside]
This is my synth-based anthem cover of the song by singer/songwriter Danny Schmidt. This version is an earlier draft from 2018, mostly from a whirlwind month when I was trying to get as much done before my trial of Ableton Live ended. Me on vocals, synth/loops. Many thanks to not_on_display for the arrangement idea and feedback through multiple iterations. Basically I made this to help myself feel better, and I figure it's something I could share especially now. [more inside]
It's about as much fun as you'd imagine it would be. March 2020. [more inside]
Written in response to some of the more hideous things some politicians have said regarding death, disease and the economy. Not quite as hi-fi as I'd like, as I was running everything (vocal, guitar and stompers) live through a little guitar amp, recorded straight to an iPad, cause it was video recording. But, I guess it's acceptable. Anyway, it's the kinda tune I just wanted to get out there quickly. Here's the YouTube upload of this same performance. Thanks for listening, and stay safe.
A brand new song from our forthcoming album "Riches to Rags", which we're released today as part of our special Social Distance release on Bandcamp. [more inside]
I wrote a little tune about that darn microscopic critter the whole world is talking about. I made a little video for it, too. If you wanna see it, it's here. Put it on Bandcamp as well, just for good measure, as an AIF file, which of course I'd be delighted if you bought for a buck. Or more. Cause all my damn gigs are cancelled lately. [more inside]
You know how you were thinking the other day "I really love Nine Inch Nails, but I'd really love Nine Inch Nails if they were Sufjan Stevens" Yeah, me too. Also for the first time shot video as I was recording.
"Won't shake it at the Mardi Gras, why don'tcha come home and shake it all for me!" Americana and Second-Line rhythms combine in a character piece about a bayou boy skeptical of the charms of the Big Easy. The upcoming album, Tales from the Crescent, is a New Orleans-themed song cycle that crosses multiple genre lines in its quest to musically capture the complicated creature that is the Crescent City.
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]
A small a capella piece as part of a community chorus concert. [more inside]
A quick little minute-long tune.
Based on a true story. Written and performed by Tim Long. [more inside]
This short (1:16) instrumental ditty is what happened when I started learning a new recording platform that came with loops of instruments I'd always wanted to play or include on my recordings: pedal steel guitar (I was super excited about this especially -- I've wanted to work with pedal steel for a really long time), baritone guitar, and mandolin. And did I mention the bossa drums? Not sure if I went overboard but I had fun and liked the result. [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.
Trying out a new thing with an honest song about actual life. [more inside]
So I feel like I owe a thank you to MeFi Music--this is the first place I started putting all my works in progress, even when it was just iPhone voice memos. Getting a few thoughtful comments was really encouraging and lovely. Then I graduated to better home recordings on SoundCloud and here, and today I put out this "official" first single everywhere. Yet another intense, moody alternative folk song with a real guitarist this time. [more inside]
"'I will work for honey!' This girl looks at me and goes, 'what?' I go 'yeah, it goes like this.'" [more inside]
A restrained simple thought of a song.
Folky, catchy murder ballad. [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]
That is, I just got an electric guitar for the first time and it features heavily in my new song, "Georgia." Catchy, moody indie folk/folk rock tune.
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).
Post of the week...intense acoustic folk song. Guitar, vocals, piano.
lofi recording of somewhat didactic relyricization of joan baez classic, prepared around the time of the tiki torch society's march on charlottesville. [more inside]
Post of the week! This is a new (and improved?) version of a song I posted quite a while ago (as "Drinking all day"). Light, airy, one-chord country song with moody lyrics. Added second guitar part, violin, harmony vocal. I think I'm getting somewhere with my recording capabilities--what do you think? Any thoughts on the mix?
Moody, jazzy little tune that explodes towards the end. About the delicious dread of falling in love when both people have baggage. This is my second big attempt at faking swing drums, so pointers would be helpful. As per usual, I started out wanting a sparse mix but it got away from me a bit. [more inside]
Here is the much improved, finished version of a song I posted before in "help me describe this." Expansive, trance-like, sort of indie folk song.
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]
Cavemen, rockets, creation myths. [more inside]
... the story of my life ... [more inside]
A quick, old tune
a fairly unoriginal country tune that i'm nonetheless quite pleased with...
So I've been consumed with learning Irish traditional music for the past year, and was finally able to trek down to VA to see my old pal Ian and have him help me record a few sets of tunes. This rough mix is so far my favorite of the bunch. [more inside]
Turns out my version of the serenity prayer involves a lot more quantum sci-fi and psycho-killer imagery. Been working on this for a good while, trying to figure out how to program drums for a slow 6/8 time. Pretty happy with how it finally came together, but I'd love some pointers. Still worried it's a bit too saturated, but that's kinda my MO. Lyrics in the fold. [more inside]
Just some opinions, set to the music of a three string guitar. Video of this same performance at YouTube or Facebook. High quality (AIFF) audiofile available for free download at SoundCloud.
It's been a while since I posted anything, so here goes with a slightly off-kilter, folksy, moody vocal and guitar piece.
I'm baaaaaack! After quite a hiatus, during which much has happened, but myself and a friend were in the recording studio to make an album. Thought you fine folks would like a sample. This is a traditional song in the Irish language called "An Spealadoir", or the Hay cutter. My friend and I joke that of all the big songs in the Irish tradition about shipwrecks, wars, love lost and emigration, she managed to pick a song about cutting grass. Enjoy!
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]
All this awful flood action has inspired me to dig up the sad old tail of Highway Boy, raised by his trucker brother, because his father was a hurricane and his mother was a cellar door. [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.
Vocal and guitar, one rough take, one track, melodic and intense two minutes and thirty seconds
Due to circumstances almost entirely beyond my control, I recently became responsible for a wonderful young dog named Orsa. This song is written from her perspective. [more inside]
Warm, mellow vocals, guitar, fiddle. My first post!
a rough recording of a song i wrote the other day. inspired by a number of travelers i befriended while bumming around BC. [more inside]
A song written for my 4 month old daughter. [more inside]
I'm happy to present my collaboration with not_on_display: this is our version of a neat little tune that was included in The American Songbag (a 1927 folk song collection by Carl Sandburg); the song there was itself derived from a late 19th-century song by William S. Hays. [more inside]