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Tales of 14-Songs-in-14-Days: Live blogging This Challenge

Well, it’s live blogging -ish.  I didn’t want to inundate everyone with trivial comments about songs that might not turn out to be “all that”.

So this is a summary at the end of the first week, and a sample of the first week’s best.

Day 1:  Based on a conversation I had with Andy (my husband, for those of you who don’t know him).

Pretty Good

Fact is
Things are not as they should be
I hear it every night on tv
And see it in the news

Y’Come home
And find me in a mess again
And you don’t have to guess again
Why I’ve got the blues

And then we talk for awhile
And you find my smile
Just like I knew you would

And baby, thanks to us
Thanks to us
Thanks to us life is still
Pretty good

Was there always
This much greed and selfishness
Everything and everybody overstressed
And overused.

I come home and find you hangin’ on
By a thread that’s almost gone
So I do my best for you.

And we laugh for awhile
And I find your smile
Just like you knew I would

And baby, thanks to us
Thanks to us
Thanks to us life is still
Pretty good

Day 2:  The first person to contribute to my Indiegogo campaign to raise the funds to mix and master my new CD, was Tommy Adair. I had offered to write a song for the first contributor, so here is the song for Tommy. I didn’t know him personally, so everything I learned about him came from his YouTube channel:

Tommy Pick Your Fiddle Up

Back before he was a teen
He played with the symphony
They said he was a prodigy
But he put his fiddle down
Friends would ask him why he quit
Cuz I want to be a kid
Gonna miss you, teacher said
But he put his fiddle down

Now the strings are old and rusty
On the shelf the case is dusty
And inside of it smells musty
Since he put his fiddle down
Sometimes he imagines when
He felt the bow in his hand
But he hasn’t picked it up again
Since he put his fiddle down.

And everyone who knows him
They all want to tell him

Tommy pick your fiddle up and play us a song
Put a smile on all our faces
Make us dance all night long
Tommy you’ll remember how
It’s not too late
Tommy pick your fiddle up and play.

Tommy thinks that he forgot
How to get sweet music from that box
But he didn’t lose what’s in his heart
When he put his fiddle down
Sometimes he will write a song
And he will sing it all night long
Tommy’s music does go on
But he’s put his fiddle down

And everyone who knows him
They all want to tell him

Tommy pick your fiddle up and play us a song
Put a smile on all our faces
Make us dance all night long
Tommy you’ll remember how
It’s not too late
Tommy pick your fiddle up and play.

Day 3: In the middle of trying to sort out bill payments and tax issues, I expressed my discontent with this song about how nice it would be if all I had to do was music. Truth is, I know I’m lucky that ANY  of what I do is music.  But part of my philosophy is that a perfect life contains stuff to gripe about:

Mainly Music

Don’t get to do what I want to do
Wishing I was a kid again
Don’t get to say what I want to say
Wishing I could do what I did back when
I was a child and life was
Mainly music.

Mostly the world is a noisy place
Often the world is so dark
Mostly I’m just trying to walk the path
Of my life with a loving heart
Mostly I want a world that is
Mainly music.

No one knows what heaven looks like
I’m just hoping for some peace
But I’ll bet the angels sing
In exquisite harmonies

I have my share of comfort and joy
I’m a dreamer I suppose
I have my share of disappointments
I’ll try not to dwell on those
If I can have a world that is
Mainly music.

Day 4: This one was started awhile ago, but never finished. Now it’s “finished”. Maybe.  The trigger was exactly what the first verse says:

Question

So if I trip on the sidewalk
And if I skin my knee
Then I may cry for my mommy inside
But the mommy I want is me.

And if I stubbed my heart on someone
And I’ve splintered my self-esteem
And I say that I need a lover to hold
The lover I need is me.

When do we learn to love ourselves
The way we say we want to be loved?
When will I stop seeking someone else’s approval?

If I need a shoulder
Of a friend where I can lean
Why shouldn’t I be my own best friend,
And that shoulder belong to me?
Eh?
That shoulder belongs to me.

Day 5:  Now I’m in my car, driving to Utah. Actually, I started this trip on Day 4, but I had a song for Day 4. So I’m driving through southern Utah.  If you’ve never driven I-70 west from Grand Junction, CO to I-15, you should get in your car immediately (well, asap) and do that.  I thought at one point, “I should get out my camera and get pictures of this”, and then was struck by the utter pointlessness of trying to capture this huge, overwhelming and overwhelmingly spectacular landscape.  I’ve seen wall-size paintings that don’t do it justice.  So I wrote a song instead:

Let Me Take You West

Let me take you west
And fill your eyes with beauty
I could show you pictures
But they’d just be small and puny
And I would not be satisfied
And you would not feel blessed
Like if you saw them with your own eyes
Let me take you west.

Let me take you west
To timeless earthly majesty
In ever-changing robes and jewels
Left here by the sea.
And you will hear me speak of it
And I will seem obsessed
There’s only one solution
Let me take you west.

Let me take you west
Among the brooding silent canyons
And the shouts of pointed rocky spires
Reaching to the heavens
Spend a day or spend a lifetime
Whatever you suggest
Let me show you how I love you
Let me take you west.

Imagine this at sunset
Let me take you west.

Day 6:  There is one other person doing this challenge with me, Leora, because everyone else in the group did it two weeks ago. I was in Hawaii two weeks ago, and I knew I’d never stick with it, if I tried to do it while vacationing. Leora said something in one of her songs, “Virtual”, that triggered a response in me. This was the result:

Big Brother

Back in 1949 George Orwell wrote a story
About people acting like sheep and the world in an endless war
They didn’t question why. They never questioned who.
Everywhere they looked they saw
“Big Brother is watching You.”

And they lived for Big Brother
And they breathed for Big Brother
And they worked for Big Brother
And believed in Big Brother
Cuz Big Brother was watching.

1984 came and went, and tho the picture isn’t pretty
It’s not as dire as predicted. At least not in your city.
And Big Brother never came to pass
Because it didn’t need ta.
We the people volunteered
And called it “Social Media”

And we dance for Big Brother
And we sing for Big Brother
Tell our hopes to Big Brother
And dreams to Big Brother
And Big Brother is watching.

Even if that’s not the intent
We don’t control how the money is spent
After it leaves our hands.

So look out for Big Brother
Tell your friends ‘bout Big Brother
Never doubt that Big Brother
Is watching.
So we must carefully watch
Big Brother too.

Day 7:  This one is so sketchily sketched out, that I can’t post lyrics here.

Also, Day 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8 are not yet recorded, which isn’t strictly according to the rules, but those 4 days I spent driving to and from Salt Lake City, where I took 2nd place in the song competition, by the way, were pretty much drive, leap out to play music, drive, sleep (maximum 6 hours) and drive.  No time to record. I lost 6 pounds because there was no time to eat either. I’m catching up as I can.  Maybe by the time of next week’s blog, I’ll have more for you to listen to, but here’s the song from Day 2.

Tommy Pick Your Fiddle Up