Leaderboard


Popular Content

Showing most liked content on 05/07/2017 in all areas

  1. 9 likes
    I wasn't always into music deeply though I enjoyed its company. I remember picking up a guitar for the first time when I was 15 years old (being 24 now). Maybe that's when my interest in music increased and kept my teenage mind occupied. Being in India and coming from a middle-class background, my only source of international music back then was the radio. Every night at 9:00PM, the local radio would air the feed of Top40 with Ryan Seacrest or Casey Kasem and I used to fall asleep to it. The more I recall those nights, the more I realise how significant it has been for me to ever have my doors open to this wonderful world of music. Around the same time, I came across and heard 'Gravity' by John Mayer. That changed everything. I'm sure there is always one moment in life for every single person that proves to be monumental in deciding what the rest of their life is going to be. Listening to Gravity was mine. Never was I so moved with the words being sung and the music going with it. That's when my fascination with songwriting, making music, expressing was born. My frustration with my noob guitar playing skills further motivated me to write my own words and melodies. lol That's how it began. From there, I would try to find every opportunity to sing in front of an audience. Since I was in school, most of that would be singing competitions. I guess being part of those competitions really helped me gain confidence in myself to stand in front of an audience and perform. There was no stopping me from there. And then Songstuff & John happened. For those of you who know Derek Sivers is would also know that he was an active blogger/writer as well and was open to discussions with any person who would send him a mail. I did so, seeking music advice back in 2011. He said that the best way to get better at what you do is to share it with like minded people. He suggested I find communities online. And obviously, the first one to pop up was Songstuff. I joined Songstuff in Feb 2011 (I just checked, it marked my 6 years of Songstuff just yesterday) and I was quite the excited one. John noticed. I started getting involved with more things Songstuff and we started talking more about music and what not. Back then, I had a very basic phone with internet capabilities at the lowest. I had no computer, no equipment. In fact I had no room of mine either & was living in a room with my two brothers and my mom. But I had these songs. And John suggested I put an EP out with those songs. Now, note that I'd never performed anywhere but in school and college. I had no equipment, no money and quite evidently, no sense of challenge. And John says - "If that's where we've got to start from, then let's start". I did all I can to put some money together (saving lunch money, claiming that I needed lunch money from friends lol) and then went to a studio and recorded 5 songs and called it Beyond the Door. It was just one guitar (with barely average guitar playing) and my voice. But I did it. That's the point John had all along. Use what you've got and work with it. As if there was any other choice. I put the EP out online, sent it indie radio stations all over the globe (I did get my songs aired in a handful of radio stations and podcasts in the UK, US and Japan. I think that was super sweet of the people running the shows), got a 'music video' prepared with the help of my brother. A few people in the city took notice, invited me to perform at a few places for free. Two venue owners saw me there and offered me my very first paid gigs and on I went on my journey to become a full time musician. With John's direction always being there, I continued to stay active and build my music career while in college. As you would know how it is in India when it comes to parents pressuring you to pursue a more 'meaningful profession', I ploughed on as I finished my bachelor's degree in computer science. I worked for about a year and then made the decision to call it quits and pursue music full time. My parents were obviously against it but being stubborn, I did it anyways. John and other friends helped me to be smart about it. Being a singer-songwriter in India is not exactly a financially stable option lol I had to make sure that my education loans were still being taken care of as well that nothing changes in the financial equation I have with my parents. I wasn't a kid anymore. I did have a responsibility. It's been two years since I called it quits. Looks like things haven't gone to the shits yet lol I don't plan on it to. My parents came to a gig of mine a couple of months back. Their very first gig. After years of quarrel, fights, debates and what not, my dad on his way back said "I understand what he's doing now". He's not opposed my music or has shown distaste towards it ever since. In fact, it has been the opposite. Over the years, I've got to support some of the best bands in the country. I opened for Lucy Rose and Luke Sital-Singh when they came to India. I got to perform with Christian Galvez, one of the best Jazz musicians in the world which was a life time opportunity. There is a LONG way to go. And being a full time musician is a real struggle every single day. But it's all worth it! Every single bit. Years have passed and John has continued to mentor me in my career. He's been a greater friend and has helped me in the toughest of my days even when I was at a stage where I was 'hurting' myself. And it is such a mind-boggling thing for me to comprehend how someone on the other side of the world who has never met me in person has had so much selfless concern and passion in helping me. Well, helping people. I mean, this is what Songstuff is all about. It sounds like I'm exaggerating but believe me, John is probably THE biggest reason for any success I have earned and will ever earn in my music career. I try to remember that every day. Well, that's me.
  2. 4 likes
    Greetings. I'm Richard and have just signed up and will tell you a little about myself. I live in Melbourne, Australia and have played music since I was a teenager (an epoch ago). I wrote from the beginning but stopped for no good reason about 30 years ago. Started writing again about four years ago and am in a home recording duo with a female vocalist (Anne). I write mainly safe, middle-the-road stuff and would be interested in some feedback on our 'stuff' and discussions around recording and songwriting. Our duo is called Strawberry Lane - Yes I'm a Beatles fan. Cheers Richard
  3. 3 likes
    This one's been percolating a while. Sometimes the heart knows best . . . or does it? Comments and ideas are most welcome. Won’t Let Me Fall Too Far Copyright © 2017 by L.C. Campbell V1 I’ve taken my wrong turns I’ve taken those short cuts I’ve woken up all alone Not knowing which way was up I’ve given in too fast I’ve given away too much My heart learned its lesson I’m not safe to trust V2 I’m seeing clear now And my mind is made up This one feels different This could be the one Can almost touch the real thing Almost taste his sweet love But my heart just won’t let me Get close enough Ch1 He’s everything that I could ever want But I’ve been careless with my heart Now it won’t let me fall too far I swear this time is different I can feel it in his touch But I’ve been careless with my heart Now it won’t let me fall in love V3 He’s taken his wrong turns He’s taken those short cuts He’s tried to go it alone But he’s giving that up So I wanna go too fast I wanna give too much But my heart just won’t let me Take this chance on love Ch He’s everything that I could ever want But I’ve been careless with my heart Now it won’t let me fall too far I swear this time is different I can feel it in his touch But I’ve been careless with my heart Now it won’t let me fall in love
  4. 3 likes
    I love this challenge idea and actually did something like this on my own a few weeks ago. I'm finding that the news topic that got my attention this week (lunch shaming) is feeling too big emotionally to contain in lyrics just yet, but I'm working on it. But in the meantime . . . These lyrics did not get written under the time pressure of this song challenge, but I think they meet the brief and I haven't posted them before. I wrote them about a month ago after reading about all the social division in the US and around the world. I mainly needed to express what I was feeling and not lose hope that we could find a way forward. I recently made my first demo using a modified version of these lyrics. But this is how the words originally came to me after reading articles in this series below. https://www.ap.org/explore/divided-america/ Two Hearts at a Time Copyright © 2017 by L. C. Campbell V1 Dividing lines and choosing sides Leaves no room to change our minds You hold a gun, I hold a sign We’re both holding on for dear life Ch We can’t mend all we’ve broken But you and I can make a start Let’s take it two hearts at a time V2 If God is love, and to love is divine Don’t let hate control our minds Who are we to decide That some love wrong, and some love right Ch We can’t mend all we’ve broken But you and I can make a start Let’s take it two hearts at a time V3 The common ground is open wide With room enough to free our minds I’ll meet you there and we will find My pain is yours and yours is mine Ch We can’t mend all we’ve broken But it’s time to make a start Let’s take it two hearts at a time Ch We can’t mend all we’ve broken But you and I can make a start Let’s take it two hearts at a time Let’s take it two hearts at a time
  5. 2 likes
  6. 2 likes
    I first picked up a guitar at the age of 14. It was a beat up classical guitar that had a split around the body creating a bellows effect. The action was so high, it was impossible to play anything above the 5th fret! and the tuning peg on one of the strings was missing. So all the other strings were tuned to that string. Over a period of time, the tuning got lower and lower. I loved it! It belonged to the guy who had recently moved into the house next door. He was training to be a teacher. Not the best start to a life long friendship! I hated school, and I hated most of my teachers! Believing them to arrive each morning from an alien place to beat some education into us mere humans. But Les Andrew was a persistant individual, and he was determined to foist this guitar onto me. He insisted I borrow it whilst he attended university. A cunning ploy! Armed with this beast, and clutching reams of music manuscript written by such dignitaries as Lennon and McCartney, and The Birds, and a book of basic chords! I was informed by Les to master the chord of Eb on the 3rd fret. 'This will enable you to play anything!' I was told. Weeks and weeks went by when I struggled to get my pudgy little fingers around an Eb chord. Changing to Eb from other chords, changing from Eb to other chords. It was torture. Bearing in mind the extraordinary height of the strings from the fretboard on this guitar, At last, I finally felt I could play this chord comfortably. I awaited the return of the bloke next door! When he did turn up, and we started to play a few songs together, I noticed that any song that was either in the key of Eb, or actually contained an Eb chord somewhere in the song, he would transpose the song into a different key! When I tackled him about this! He blithely imparted that you didn't play in Eb if you could get away with it...??? Despite this misleading start, I managed to keep playing and eventually bought my own guitar. It was a beautifull classical guitar. I left school at the age of 15, and saved up enough money to enable a visit to the local musical emporium! This was mainly dedicated to accoustic instruments. I entered the premises with the princely sum of £13 in my pocket. The sales person was an elderly (to me) gentleman who enquired if I needed assistance? 'I've come to buy a guitar.' I mumble feeling slightly embarrased. 'A wise investment young sir!' He exclaims in a very understated and gentle voice. I immediately feel at ease! 'Do you have a preference as to the style of instrument you require?' He asks. 'Err, I've been playing a nylon string one' 'Excellent choice!' This man is the epitome of calm. The sort of bloke you really want to be your Grandad! 'Does sir have a budget to adhere to?' 'Um. I've got £13' I mumble. This represents almost three weeks wages to me! 'Let's have a look shall we?' The place is full of guitars! Along all walls three high, starting with, on the left, the biggest array of classical guitars I've yet to encounter since that day! He selects a guitar and walks to the other side of the shop and sits down on a stool. 'I think this may be a suitable candidate!' He says. He then tunes it up in what appears to be less than a second, and hands it to me. ' I shall leave you alone whilst I attent to a few things. Please!' He says indicating the stool. I sit down and start impressing everybody with my mastery of the Eb chord. Then I strike up a snappy little number in Am by America called Ventura Highway. Feeling pretty pleased with myself, the salesman returns. 'What do you think? 'It feels lovely' I say. Which it did. 'How much is it?' I enquire. He finds a small ticket attached to a tuning peg. '£16 sir.' 'Oh. I've only got £13. I can't afford any more than that!' He takes the guitar from me and asks how long I've been playing. 'Not long.' I say. 'Will this be your first instrument Sir?' He asks. 'Yes.' I say. He is now sitting on the stool and begins to play. I have no idea what he is playing, but it's not Lennon and McCartney or the Birds. I am absolutely stunned that such beautifull music can come from a piece of wood with pieces of wire and plastic attached. After a few minutes, he stops and I am left speachless! He walks to the counter with the guitar, searches there for a few seconds and finds a carrying case. Puts the guitar inside, puts a set of pitch pipes in the pocket of the case and looks at me over the rim of his spectacles. 'That will be £13 exactly young Sir. Keep practising and above all! Enjoy playing.' I rush over to the counter scrabbling in my pocket for the money I have carefully folded away! I am still stunned and can't believe my luck! I have just obtained about 20 quids worth of gear for 13! Two things happened to me that day. First, I became the owner of my first guitar. Second, I realised there was more to music than the Beatles and Top of the Pops.. Steve.
  7. 2 likes
    I really like the sound you have......and very interesting writing on the piano. Your voice is lovely...but, perhaps could use a little reverb for recording effect. I really like the energy with this. I think it is really awesome, as I sit here listening. Great changes in rhythm and direction!!! I can't tell you enough how I appreciate this. Very accomplished! OK.....I'm a fan! -Tom
  8. 2 likes
    Peggy, I had a random thought related to your lyrics. When I first read it, it tickled something at the back of my brain that I read before about how spider webs are a metaphor for our lives. Webs are woven from the gut (literally!). They are also about weaving connection but you can't always see a web looking straight on--sometimes the light has to be just right or you have too look from the right angle, but it's there even if you can't see it. In human terms I think it means that we don't always see the web but we are all connected by our shared intuition. Again, a random thought but your lyrics brought it to mind. I think that's what lyrics are supposed to do .
  9. 1 like
    Hi, HoboSage. I appreciate the comments. In V1 was trying to capture the adversarial images that we see of protesters vs police. My interpretation is that it does feel extreme and can be a matter of life and death, depending on the circumstances. I'll think on it. Thanks again. ~T
  10. 1 like
    Ah yes. I tried out "all that's broken" but there wasn't any personal collective responsibility in that word choice.
  11. 1 like
    I really like this (good hook too), except for the the third and fourth lines in the first verse. The fourth line just doesn't feel like it rolls well cadence-wise to me. I think "we're both holding on to life" would roll a lot better, and convey basically the same thing. Having one party in the third line "hold a gun"? One party holding maybe a Bible, while the other holds a sign (though all sides hold signs), is a situation where mutual understanding could happen. But, if one party is holding a gun and the other is unarmed, no way. In this context, having one party holding a gun just strikes me as overly extreme, and doesn't well convey a pro-gun-rights person as much as it does a potentially violent and dangerous person. Just my opinions. P.S. "Hold your tongue or hold a sign . . . we're both holding on to life" might be a good alternative? Just a suggestion.
  12. 1 like
    Thanks for appreciating that line. I kept going back and forth with other options--fix, heal, etc, but kept coming back to the image of the social fabric of our country being torn and threads holding us together being broken and needing to be mended. So that's what I went with. ~T
  13. 1 like
    I missed that this was happening widely in schools because I don't have small kids, but I tried to put myself in the shoes of the woman coming to the realization that she couldn't continue to follow the school policy of lunch shaming. I think we've all found ourselves not living our values, in big ways or small. I know I have. How do we find our way back? http://www.cbsnews.com/news/pennsylvania-school-cafeteria-worker-quits-over-lunch-shaming-policy/ Shame in Their Eyes Copyright 2017 by L.C. Campbell V1 They reached out in need, too hungry for pride Starving for more than a meal could provide Too young to disguise the shame in their eyes The shame that feeds the fire V2 They were looking for safety and somewhere to hide Holding out hope that the world would be kind I turned away from the fear in their eyes The fear drives the flames higher And I burn Ch1 I burn for the helpless I burn for the hurt In my little corner of hell here on earth I burn V3 Just a cog in the wheel, it’s no fault of mine To turn them away at the front of the line They were too young to fight the tears in their eyes Those tears branded me a liar V4 I went looking for safety and somewhere to hide Holding out hope that the world would be kind Is there a way back for the cruel and the blind Redemption’s my greatest desire And I yearn Ch2 To turn to the helpless To turn to the hurt In my little corner of hell here on earth It’s my turn To turn to the helpless To turn to the hurt In my little corner of hell here on earth It’s my turn
  14. 1 like
    Hi, Richard. Welcome. Click on the "Music" sub-forum of the main "Showcase" forum. Near the top of that page on the right side you should see a dark rectangle icon for "Start new topic." Click on that. If you don't see that "Start new topic" icon, you may need to have more overall posts before the software lets you start your own topic there - not sure. David
  15. 1 like
    Good day, Richard. Looking forward to hearing some of your work, man. Ken
  16. 1 like
    Nice job with the intro Richard...welcome! Tom
  17. 1 like
    There's some good material in there!
  18. 1 like
    So tempted to try this one! http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-39830447
  19. 1 like
    Hi I like this. It's well written. I just wonder at the references to the 2 old songs that are so iconic that they may overshadow this. "I'm leaning on a lamppost" and "Dancing cheek to cheek".
  20. 1 like
    Really interesting.. but I feel like this was only a part of something much bigger.. i dont know if that's what you intended. but it really just seem like a fragment. i enjoyed every second of it, though, and didn't know where it was going to go
  21. 1 like
    It's a chorus on one vocal and then another vocal underneath that one with a delay, I think the chorus has a stereo widener on it too that makes it really like.... cool lol I dunno music stuff.
  22. 1 like
    Thanks for the feedback. I will work on my dictation but I dont think I will ever will get my French right:) A few of the instruments got a bit lost in the SoundCloud upload. Particularly the keys and some depth in the guitar. I guess there is a quality loss but it did sharpen the vocals a bit and makes this a bit vocal heavy as well. I will see if I can fix this in a few days.
  23. 1 like
    Hi Dennis. this is a nice tune! Overall a relaxing environment.. somehow it makes for an evening, easy-listening session for me. It doesn't really sound like a sad song probably because of the tempo chosen and the beats used. It could also probably be because your vocals are not sounding as clear as the rest of the music. Except for some of the chorus lines, I really need to prick my ears to catch what you're saying. And I don't want to prick my ears because the music is so easy on my ears... so there's my dilemma
  24. 1 like
    Rock The Joint - Jimmy Preston & His Prestonians
  25. 1 like
    Extremely difficult question, but off the top of my head I'd have to go with "Scenes From An Italian Restaurant" by Billy Joel. As for the "whys"... the strength of the melody the complexity & variety of the song structure serves as a fine example of how to incorporate mood changes & movements into a popular music piece excellent, diverse arrangement great example of a nostalgic, story-themed lyric great use of lyrical imagery, artistic & contemporary at the same time and finally, because I've always believed Billy Joel to be one hell of a songwriter/performer. In my humble opinion, anyone out there who's not acquainted with his work, should be! That song would serve as a good starting point. Tom