Walking with Strangers is about the unwillingness to start fresh with anyone, give anyone new the benefit of the doubt. It's about not trusting friends or acquaintances, to living forever lost in a crowd, and to decide this is the easy answer to a problem seemingly figured out.
I wanted the song to have a simple feel that would imply everything is fine, but also capture the stubbornness of a person set in their ways, or their decision. It explains a state of mind, at first with the attitude that "this is what I don't want from you, and why if you ask anything of me, you won't get what you want." That message becomes a more honest reflection, "this is all I've ever gotten from people like you."
By the bridge, the song opens up and all the tension is released. Whether this signifies anger, the true longing for companionship, a desire to change, etc, is really up to the listener. It's a glimpse into what is truly felt behind the mask of calm. Rather than using words to explain it, the release is in the music.
When the energy begins to subside, you get the sense that nothing is going to change how this person feels, and the song comes full circle back into the facade of calm and solitude.
I wrote this about personal experience of finding it hard to let people in after metaphorically burning my hand on the stove too many times. It's not meant to support the idea that people should be alone, but rather understand that nothing is really as simple as it seems. No one does anything for simple reasons, but are always led by fears and desires they can somewhat express, but not necessarily fully understand, and below the facade of what we tell ourselves, there is a very deep well of raw emotion. Walking With Strangers is about how some of us keep it all under a tight lid.
The song Shine Your Lantern Down was written for my (Donnie Brooks's) little brother who passed away unexpected in a tragic accident in March of 2011. I was full of mixed emotion and still grieving when I decided to write a tribute to my little brother's memory. In the attempts to write a proper song I wrote over 10 different songs. Not happy with the sad emotion that each song I had written expressed I had all but given up on writing a tribute when I suddenly stumbled upon a riff I had been working on for sometime. It was a different approach than I had thought about to that point. It was a more joyful type of angle, this made perfect sense immediately. It was very clear that I needed to write a song that was more of a celebration of his life. The end result lives as a tribute to his light hearted way of life and hopefully brings some smiles to anyone who has lost someone they love way too soon.
When writing songs, I try to truly speak from the heart. Surrendering was written over the course of several months, as I was exploring my desire to embrace music and songwriting. The theme of this song is letting go and surrendering to the process of opening myself up to my feelings and emotions. I believe that sometimes we all have to accept the fact that there are experiences in our life when certain things beyond our control. So much of the time, that involves love or spirituality, but could really relate to many of life's experiences. “Surrendering” was selected by Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) to be pitched at it’s “Pitch to Publisher” luncheon and I’ve also been selected by NSAI as “One to Watch”, which recognizes songwriters who are “on the rise” and have gotten the attention of the song evaluators for their ”unique and promising writing skills. In addition, ”Surrendering” made it to the semi-finals for the 2012 Show Me The Music Songwriting Contest. Thank you for your consideration.
Currency was one of the first songs David and I wrote together and at a time when we were living and working in separate countries.
I was acting in a few productions up in Canada ('The Vow', with SpyGlass Pictures, and Steven Spielberg's, 'Falling Skies) while David continued his day job teaching guitar and piano back home in LA. Recognizing we had formed an unlikely union we were still dedicated to our collaboration. It actually became clearer with geographical distance that David and I were committed to writing music together, and that our partnership could take the music we had written independently to the next level. Our artistic strengths and weaknesses complimented each other, but there was also an odd sense of purpose, even family, as soon as we started playing.
"78sixsixsix", the third track from our EP Moxy Kid is a song about breaking out of a small town and the small people in that town. The title of the song comes from the zip code 78666 which is the San Marcos, Texas zip code. Everyone that lived there made jokes of it being an 'evil' because of the '666' zip code.
San Marcos is a college town and the song chronicles my years in college when I felt out of place and strange. I had always felt like I wasn't fulfilling my potential and I used the small town as a metaphor for holding me back from what I really wanted in my life. I liked the idea of an evil town and I drew inspiration from Daniel Johnston's well known celebrated song 'Devil Town.' For me, the song is about trying to break free from old habits and negative people hence the line "won't the world just let me out? Won't the world just melt me down?"
Fieldnotes From a Caravan is a collection of songs that was written from Maine to Nashville, and from Thailand to Nepal. During a six month teaching assignment in Bode, Bhaktapur, Nepal, to which Betty, a cheap, stickered acoustic traveled, a few songs that have really stuck with me were penned.
I made the fatal flaw of many a traveler, and fell in love with my fixer, the person who is responsible for helping with translation, getting a person settled, and showing them around. This wonderfully open hearted young man with enormous eyes would take me on motorbike rides through the mountains, and it became clear it wasn't purely to show me the sights. When it became suspicious to the locals that we were spending so much time together, I headed back to the city to visit my friend Mamata, who is one of the only self-made, divorced, successful business women in a country where divorce is still practically unheard of.
We Are Waiting is the title track to the debut EP by the Dallas-based band Always The Alibi. We usually close out our shows with this song to leave on an energetic high plus it has a great call-and-response thing going in the chorus. We love to get the crowd involved in this part and they always have a good time singing with u
This song was one of the most fun to record in the studio. It has a good energy and we love all of the texture added to the verses. Our producer, Bryan David, has such a knack for building little counter-melodies to the primary tracks. It gets interesting because you never know if what he's suggesting is going to work until you hear the final mix.
People have always asked what the song is about or the inspiration behind it, even a few of the band members. Like a lot of songwriters, I prefer to leave that up to the listener. It's not a political statement, just a call for every person to find their own voice to what matters to them.
One of Path Of Motion's newest endeavors, the unreleased song Lighthouses, from our upcoming EP, is an hard rock epic, from the point of view of a young man at sea, leaving everything he knows behind. The song uses vivid imagery and metaphors of violent winds and the high seas, while the man spends his days and nights without guidance, searching for somewhere to dock his boat and restart his life.
After the storm he sails in finally breaks, he uses the stars and his heart to guide him, and regains somewhat of an inner peace, regarding his new life, which begins at the sight of a lighthouse in the distance, beckoning to him, as a strong presence in a pitch black night.
We wrote this song with as a story, as we've all dealt with personal experience on leaving behind parts of our lives, and though you may not know what's coming, and it may be a rough ride, there is always a light at the end of the journey, you just have to be willing to ride out the storm. We all wanted to be able to reach out to people in a tough situation, perhaps embarking on a new journey, or in the midst of big changes, and convey to them that if you stick it out, it really will be ok, you just have to be willing to work and wait for it.
Path Of Motion
Jeff Zimmerman - Guitar, Lead Vocals
Brian Kron - Lead Guitar, Screams
James McCreavy - Bass, Backing Vocals
Chris Grogan - Vocals, Drums
The song Most of All is the result of a text between Walter Jerk and a former girlfriend, whose parents were less than supportive of the relationship.
It was written at a time when The Jerk was going through the typical teenage angst and anarchy stage. One night he texted, "I hate everything" to his girlfriend, but followed up with, "But most of all I love you." He then packed his song book in his backpack and struck out on a lonely walk to try to finish the writing for an upcoming recording session. The Pinz had just won Battle of the Bands at their high school with the grand prize of studio time.
Duncan Daniels is a 28 year old singer, Music Producer and Songwriter, born in Boston, Massachusetts, raised in England and Nigeria. Over the years Duncan Daniels has perfected the art of bringing to life a diverse mix of Pop, Rock, and R&B. His music combines the right ingredients of beats, vocals, lyrics and rhythm that can only be unique to his name and his brand, DunkishRock.
I have come a long way from my early days producing at Tuck Tyght Records in Port Harcourt Nigeria to producing and recording Artists here in New York City. I got into music as a nine year old kid, after listening to classic rock songs like Aerosmith’s “ I Don't Wanna Miss A Thing”, Bon Jovi’s “Always” and Michael Learns to Rock’s “Sleeping Child” to name a few, found out that I was blessed with an ability to write music in a format that told a story that conveyed or expressed certain feelings or emotions or just a simple message that could change lives. I fell in love with Alternative Rock and Pop music for the sole reason which was the fact that it allowed me to express myself to the fullest on a song. Although this genre was not that popular in my current local at the moment I stock to it because it was what I loved, it was how I wrote music, it was me “Dunkishrock”, a nick name actually coined up by my friends at the moment, from my first name “Duncan” and because I made rock music, so it was my rock, hence the name Dunkishrock.
The song "Want It All Tonight" is autobiographical. It is about a relationship in which two people fall completely in love and, as touring musicians, have to deal with the distance and separation interjected into the relationship. The song is about being willing to give up everything to, as the song states, "...spend my life in your arms". The lyrics are a reflection of my belief that if the passion is there, if the love is real, no distance can take that away.
The story behind this song begins in the depths of a canyon. Far below the capabilities of a river is where we sat. The night was filled with desert air - thinner than paper and sharper than a knife. We had been touring for two months. We had just finished our Midwest and East Coast tour and we're parked at the Grand Canyon. Ansley began strumming the guitar as the band began dancing around the campfire like forgotten salamanders in island's cave. The melody began to channel the past - filled with nostalgia and excitement - like a turquoise ice ocean filled with pink fish - the song "uh oh" began to come to life. We spoke of Destruction and happiness and the inevitable demise of the universe. Afterall - it has to happen one day. Nothing lasts forever. However, Ansley began to question this in the song as she began to lay cryptic hidden messages within the lyrics of the song of the true meaning of life. Using an ancient coding device known to the Ubaids there is a hidden message of hope and unity amongst the living and the dead - - - thus, Uh Oh!
The Callout was a song seven years in the making. Frontman Brian Clover came up with the concept in 2005. At the time the song was a slow ambient ballad drawing a lot of influence from Pink Floyd, one of Clover's biggest musical inspirations. As StillLine grew and become a much more upbeat rock band the song's sound started to feel out of place, and The Callout was eventually shelved. It would remain on the shelf througout the recording of the band's 2005 Ep 'After The Fall' and all the way through the creation of 'Forty Two', StillLine's 2011 full length album. It would be during the writing process of 'We Are All Asleep', StillLine's forthcoming full length album that the concept would surface again.
Guitarist Mike Fey had always been particularly fond of a melody Clover had written that, in the original version of the song, had served as it's bridge. This time Fey suggested it be the verse and had composed a different chord progession changing the key of the song. At this point in time the 'We Are Asleep' album already had ten tracks composed and recorded, infact they were already deep into the mixing process. The band had decided to write one more song and initially "The Callout" was going to be brought back as a final track. It was composed as the slow melodic song it was originally intended to be, however this time around, Clover recognized something different. On a wim Clover would join drummer Taylor Patterson with nothing but his acoustic in and effort to put together his new concept of song. Once introduced to the rest of the band, it was immediately and unanomously decided that not only did it have to go on the album, but that it would be the debut single. Thus, "The Callout" 2012 was born, and is ushering in the release of the 'We Are Asleep' album for 2013.
"La Di Da" is a special song for us, primarily because it was the first song we wrote with a keyboard as the lead instrument. Prior to it, we had been a guitar/bass/drums-only band. But we made some discoveries, as we played with this new sound, that led us to prefer the keyboard-driven sound for the kind of music we were writing. We are now a mainly keyboard/piano-driven rock band, and we basically owe that metamorphosis to this song.
Lyrically, it tells the story of two people--Mary Johnson and Robert Brown--who meet and subsequently have their worlds changed. They fall in love and try to join their worlds together, which they find difficult to do in different ways. But throughout the song they learn that their differences do not pose threats to one another, and that whatever they chose to do about resolving their differences, the world still continued to turn.
The message behind the story was intended to be one of existentialism. Relationships and friendships have varying effects on the different people involved, and it is all dependent on the meanings assigned to the relationships by the participants. We get to choose whether or not the end of a relationship means the end of our world, or whether we can simply carry on with our heads high. We choose the lessons we take from mistakes made, and we choose whether we carry on the same as we have before, or whether we make significant changes to our behavior. Our lives and relationships are all upon our own shoulders, and no matter what, the Earth will keep spinning around the sun for us to have these little adventures upon.
Musically, we drew from old classic rock such as the Beach Boys, modern indie, pop-rock, some jazz, and even a healthy dose of Broadway music theater. This combination sums up Sun Ghost's sound, though we have our darker songs and our lighter songs. "La Di Da" is a light song, with a light message about some heavy things.
Irene Torres & Josh Piche wrote this song while the band was in New Orleans. There's a magical mixture of musical styles all blended down in NOLA, and this song has some of that southern N'awlins jazz/blues vibe. The song was inspired by the many different ways you can get into trouble down south with sticky fingers. We recorded the song at Listen Hear Productions in New Orleans on an energy exchange basis, in fact the whole album was recorded for free. The band had been writing for a week or two prior to going into the studio and recording all the arrangements live on a zoom recorder instead of writing them down to save time. I put all the recordings on my external hard drive and the same week we were to go into the studio, we found a homeless dog on the street and took her in, she tripped the hard drive wire and the hard drive crashed, we lost all the recordings of arrangements and had to go into the studio cold with lyrics and go on memory. We ended up recording 3 songs in a day and a half and was very fortunate to bring in Chris Mason, who I had only met a couple days prior to the studio playing a gospel church service. Chris laid down some of the tastiest keys and organ after listening to the songs once or twice. The sax player on Sticky Fingers we had never met before the recording, the engineer was friends with him and he randomly came by the studio, heard the track and said, "you guys gotta let me try a take." We did and he sounded fabulous, the hallway mic really made the sax sound vintage. This is one of our biggest hits of four debut EP.
Laughing For Now
It's our single and we had a close friend pass while we were writing it. The song is about partying too hard with every vice you can imagine. Knowing all along that you're killing yourself and at the same time not giving a shit and laughing about it all the way to the grave. The chorus says it all "I was laughing, I was grinning, and I was smiling while i was sinning, and I was Crying, Because I was Dying, but I was laughing, awe man, I was laughing".
There are some other good lyrics in that song as well, such as "we ride it until the sun comes up, 32 days out of every month" We love the simplicity of the song. Everyone can understand it and I'm sure a lot can relate. The song Home on the other hand has a deeper meaning. At first listen you'd probably think it's just about a drunk guy who can't find his way home. Really home is "the road" or being on tour. We were on tour for 3 years 3 years ago, and we have been trying to find our way back ever since.
My song "Eager Pilot" was written, as most of my songs tend to be, when I was pining over a boy. A best friend of mine at the time, with whom I wrote music with and spent a lot of time with. Even though some part of me knew that he didn't feel the same way, I went for it because my heart is a fearless soldier, and I just had to know if his heart was pining for me back.
This song is about being fearless but totally terrified of following your heart. Of being frustrated at the cowardice of others. Of the object of your affection pullin' on your heart strings but not actually going after you. The pain of being vulnerable. All of those things.
My name is Jay Psaros. I am a Boston based singer/songwriter. I've traveled the country playing my music several times, especially at the start of my career. The tours have taken me from the sweltering, damp South to the dramatic and romantic north of Alaska. My first two releases were full length albums with ambitions tours based behind them. My first albums "Tripping and Running," and "On Up the Road" received praise locally, regionally and nationally. After all of this was done it was time to re-evaluate. Then came my latest release "Simply." After two years of constant writing and touring, the candle was burning a bit low. Making a living as an artist is never easy but I started to worry as funds were running low and my writing wasn't as fluid and consistent as before. I knew I had to keep writing and recording. So I took a little retreat to the studio when it was time to start recording the EP "Simply." The only problem was, I didn't have too many songs.
The song "Sober" is about two people being in love, And having this perfect relationship, And then one of them all of a sudden has to move away, But they make a promise to each other that one day they will be together again. In this case the person who is left behind doesn't want to wait sober to hold his/her loved one again. They try to find a way to feel numb from the pain, But in the end of the day the reality is still there.
Rather than talk about just one song I've written, I'm going to write about the latest EP I released called If We Could See. I won't talk about each song obviously, but more so the main message/story about the album.
I grew up right outside Boston Massachusetts, then went to school at Quinnipiac University in Connecticut. I never really thought about pursuing music full time as I graduated with an Economics as well as a Math degree then moved onto working on Wall st. in New York City. I would perform music on the side, but never really thought about going full time until a few years ago.
I was brought up in a very happy family who always taught us to think of others before ourselves. I was taught that being a good person, doing the right thing were paramount, but most of all be happy in life. After working on Wall st. for several years, I realized that I was not doing this. I had changed from the person I was raised to be and I didn't like it. So I started working with different charities including Musicians on Call (brings music to hospital patients' bedsides), Mid Atlantic Burn Camp (a camp for youths who are burn survivors), Music 4 More (an Org that helps raise money and donates musical instruments to schools around the country), and CHAP International (which is a group who travels to Africa each year to help build orphanages and help people of Liberia).
I started to think more and more about leaving Wall st. and pursuing music full time. After seeing children that I have worked with in these organizations accomplish so much, I became inspired to do the same. So a little over a year ago, I left New York City, moved to Los Angeles and have been pursuing music full time ever since. My message is simple, Be Happy & Help Others. Most of my music carries that message which is why I couldn't' really speak about one song, but rather the whole album. Each song has it's own small story, but the main message throughout the album is about enjoying life's journey but helping others along the way.
To give back to the organizations that brought me to the realization of what I should be doing with my music, I donate half my proceeds to them. I continue to work with them all and will also be traveling to Africa in June to Liberia.
Dizzy Bats's song "Sundial", simply put, is a tribute to the college years. The "Sundial" refers to a place on campus at Connecticut College, frontman Connor Frost's alma mater, where he and his friends would often gather to reflect and unwind, usually in the early AM hours. The song brings the listener through specific events, including Freshman Orientation, Graduation, and the infamous Johnson fire of 2008. The tune also refers to everyday happenings, such as the perpetual struggle of waking up for class as well as other completely legal and harmless activities that took place behind the closed doors of Larrabee 309. Like at the time the song was written, Frost transitions into the "real world" fiercely and abruptly. "Welcome home, son, you've received a package, it's not money or that western tree" references that daunting stack of paperwork that marked the end to the collegiate years and the beginning of the dreaded post-graduation life. Despite this reality, these friends and years are never forgotten, as Frost sings: "Won't forget these campfire moments, and all that you taught me."
This nostalgic piece serves as a dedication to friends and commemorates an incredible time. No matter what happens in the next ten, twenty years, we can always go back to the Sundial.