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The Album...


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THE ALBUM: Wayne says it’s coming out fine. There are only 8 songs, though; unless I want do something like call it “The Short Album,” I need to add more. We didn’t record that night everything I wanted on the album anyway. I’ll see if I can tentatively arrange to do some more songs when I come down June 15 for the big “Star of Stars” performance.

What’s “in the can” with Wayne right now are:

The Termite Song (fast bluegrass)

(When I Jump Off the Cliff) I’ll Think of You (fast bluegrass)

Free-Range Person (fast bluegrass)

Armadillo on the Interstate (slow & sleazy)

Naked Space Hamsters in Love (fast bluegrass)

No Good Songs About the War (slow country)

Milepost 43 (mod. fast country)

Dirty Deeds We Done to Sheep (rock ‘n’ roll, Johnny Cash style)

Mostly fast songs, in other words—those were what I had planned on recording with Screamin’ Gulch (only the band wasn’t there that night). I would like to add at least:

The Frog Next Door (very deliberate blues)

Rotten Candy (fast country)

Hey, Little Chicken (sleazy blues)

Dead Things in the Shower (mod. fast country)

That would provide more of a mix of styles—one almost-standard blues (and in a different key), one blues-sounding, and one that requires some decent singing. (“Dead Things” was my emulation of Frank Sinatra.) “Dead Things” is also a co-write, which would force me into doing the conventional “I’m a record company” paperwork for the whole album, instead of just releasing it. Bobbie Gallup, who co-wrote “Dead Things in the Shower,” has her own publishing company, and I had asked her at one point if she’d be willing to be publisher for the rest of the songs. Time to press that.

I proved with the “Santa’s Fallen” CD that I can play with the Big Boys: assemble a band of local musicians who are the equal of the professionals, record it in a local studio that’s the equal of the professionals, do it a whole lot cheaper (I like that) and exercise one of my personal biases, too, by recording it “Patsy Cline” syle, live and in one take—something no one does any more—and have the thing sell, just at gigs and by word of mouth, and even get played on the radio. Next step, I think, is to play LIKE the Big Boys, instead of just with them. Compete on the same playing field, in other words.

And it’d be really nice to record those additional songs with the Wild Goose Band (not a bad name for a band, that)—Jack on bass, James on lead guitar, Darrin on harmonica—and maybe Sheral on the Green Thing (it’s called a “melodicon,” and it’s really a child’s toy, but she can get some incredible sounds out of it). That band (with Sheral on flute) would be perfect for “Oil in the Cornfield,” too, if everybody were willing.

And then, one goes to the “joelist,” to SOSA, and to MySpace, and asks the involve the fans” question, “What would you call an album that’s got those songs on it?” Maybe post *.mp3 files of a couple of the songs as “teasers” on the “Wrabek’s Works in Progress” page on Soundclick, so folks can get a taste of what they sound like.

Release date by the end of summer? That would be fun…

Joe

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