Perennial

Here’s a fun song I started last week. Nice to just finish it up and get it posted early this week because it’s a big busy week in my family’s life. Firstborn graduating from high school! And a party shall ensue! And I shall plan and produce it! (with appropriate help of course).

It’s an extra bit fun to post this on the first day of Pride Month because I wrote it to be gender/orientation-inclusive. Love is love!

Feels so good to want you when I know I’m gonna get you
All to myself
It hardly seems believable that someone like you lets me have you
All to myself

Don’t you know you’re truly beautiful
Shining brightly in my eyes
Darling aren’t we just enough of a
Good thing that keeps coming back

There’s things I’m gonna whisper when you bring your fine self closer
Aw, to myself
I’ve got some sweet ideas and I didn’t want to keep them
All to myself

Don’t you know you’re truly beautiful
Shining brightly in my eyes
Darling aren’t we just enough of a
Good thing that keeps coming back

I like the way you like the way I hold you when you hold me
Close to yourself

So if you’re going my way then I’ll keep on going your way
All by myself
Except you’re welcome here beside me anytime and always
Here, by my self

Don’t you know you’re truly beautiful
Shining brightly in my eyes
Darling aren’t we just enough of a
Good thing that keeps coming back

Two Lost

This is one of those songs I don’t feel like saying too much about. It’s shaded with some personal experience but I was also thinking (feeling?) about lots of other things including but not limited to face slaps, cancel culture, love and war.

And if I told you all
What kindness could you offer me
Who caused you pain, me
Who you have reason to blame?

I’ve fallen far from grace
Misspoken, made mistakes that you
Can not forget, you
Have never wanted to yet

Try as I might I cannot
Make it right without you
And your heart in the game
Cause it takes two to win
And right now we’re just two lost

We’ve both been hiding from
The truth we can’t face up to here
Where we’re so scared, here
Where life’s pathetically fair

I’m thinking if I go
You might just think it over then
When I’m gone, then
When you’re old and alone

Try as I might I cannot
Make it right without you
And your heart in the game
Cause it takes two to win
And right now we’re just two lost

What if we start again
Who says we can’t imagine more
Than what we had, more
Than in and out, good and bad

Try as I might I cannot
Make it right without you
And your heart in the game
Cause it takes two to win
And right now we’re just two lost

January Love Song

Cat videos! Why didn’t I think of that ages ago? I didn’t feel like filming the actual recording of this week’s song so I did some hunting on publicdomainreview.org and found this adorable film from around 1945. I fully expect that my video will go viral because, did I mention, cat video!

This is my first song for #songaweek2022! It was a difficult one to title because there’s no repeating hook – every little two-line chorus is different words. If anyone has a different title idea I’d love to hear it. Titling songs is not always so easy.

You’ve got a way about you
That I think I’d like to go
Ooh when you take me to you
Time takes us in a whole other flow

I can’t say how it feels to you
But it feels to me like we might be in love

Love is a happy apple
Tough as a bowling ball
Sweet as a baby’s babble
Right as the rain that finally falls

This after all is all we are
And we are all we’re after all this time

We’ve gone so far my darling
I’m so far gone with you
Stay with me till the morning
Let the minutes spread out and fatten around us

I can’t say what the future holds
But I’m holding on with you for this dear life

Who Loves You

“Against” is not necessarily a negative word. Nor is “close.” I was thinking about this when I jotted down the first verse of this song months ago. You can lean against someone for comfort or protection or just to feel cozy. You can sit close, draw close, in love; rather than close your mind or your heart or your door. The hard s or the soft s, the adjective/adverb or the verb – they all come from the same Latin root.

The prompt for week 48 of #songaweek2021 was “tell me everything.” When I sat down to write my song last week, I revisited that first verse idea and then looked up the prompt for development ideas. I wanted each verse to set up some sense of juxtaposition – things that feel at odds that actually aren’t in a true love relationship (which is not at all limited to romantic ones). So the prompt helped me write verse two.

As I was playing the first two verses the song felt a lot like a lullaby. The first verse felt reminiscent of late nights holding my second baby, who would wake up crying hard and long and simply would not be comforted. I ached for him to just relax into my arms, against the warm loving body of his mother, but he’d twist and fight until he wore himself out.

I can be that baby too, with the people closest to me. I don’t want to open up and share my pain and mess with you. I just want to blame you for it, pick a fight to use up some of this bad energy I’m feeling.

Verse two describes the kind of loving conversation I think crying babies like me most need – a listening ear and heart, a recognition that you can never completely understand but that you want to know me. “Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity,” said Simone Weil.

The juxtaposition in the first lines of the last verse may feel harsh on the first listen. But we all know it’s true, in any and every relationship – and I think in the most deeply loving ones we find gentle honesty about it. The song ends with a reminder that morphs into a question that is also about paying attention.

Lean up right against me
You don’t need to fight against me
Come close, don’t close yourself away

Tell me everything
You don’t need to speak a word
I know, I’ll never understand

I am here for you
Until I am gone away
You know I’m not the only one
Who loves you . . .

Out With It

Here’s a song for the beloved conflict-fearing member of a relationship. It’s not an anthem for the general public. We’re living in a moment that rewards or at least amplifies hostile venting in our public spaces, both physical and virtual, and that isn’t what I’m singing about here.

This is about the person who fears conflict, and so keeps to themself about difficult things, unresolved hurts, unrevealed personal truths, for fear of rejection or causing pain, or whatever other reasons. It’s about the value of opening up about these things in the context of a supportive relationship. I’ve been on both sides of this and I’ll bet most people have in some way, at some time. We’ve all been the person holding back an important but painful truth from a loved one, its persistent psychic presence growing heavier as we keep trying to manage it alone. We’ve all been the loved one who feels something is wrong and begs for openness, or has no idea something is wrong until the painful truth comes out in an often more painful and unexpected moment.

Also, would you believe it, I followed the prompt once again! (Week 45 #songaweek2021, “out of sight”). The video is a 1927 instructional video about using a dial telephone. I didn’t have much time for recording or filming this week but I much prefer posting songs to YouTube rather than Soundcloud so I wanted something visual to go with it. And the experience of talking on the telephone has always made me nervous, something like discussing difficult things with loved ones.

If there’s something you’ve got to say by God let’s hear it
Chances are it’s not as horrible as what could happen if we don’t
If you keep on trying to hide your troubled spirit
It’ll cut you like a broken bottle settling in your soul

Out with it, out with it
It’ll do you good
Out with it, out with it
It’ll do you good

I can’t guarantee that I’ll be understanding
But you’ve got to give me something to go on if I’m going to try
Time has ancient ways of making sense of
The words we heard in ragged moments that have passed us by

Out with it . . .

Here’s the truth, I love you and I’m with you
Nothing you can say hurts worse than finding I’ve been left behind
I know it’s hard to bring out in the open
But keep it out of sight, it might drive you out of your mind

Out with it . . .