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The "song For Charity"...


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I am, I think, relatively satisfied with “Song for Charity (and Faith, and Hope).” It was a fairly rushed job, to get it out of my head, but I have to approach these things professionally under any conditions. So the lyrics were as well polished as possible, and sung to myself for two or three days while the song was developing, and not written down until close to the end (by then, I had everything almost memorized). Brief peer review, because I was in a hurry; after I’d gotten comments from three people who said they liked it (and didn’t suggest any changes), and one who asked, “You’re not really going to perform this in public, are you?” I figured it was as good as it was going to get, and recorded it. (The link is http://www.soundclick.com/share?songid=9214240.)

And recording was a relatively quick and simple process. It does help to be familiar with the equipment (and I was—I had musicated three songs just this week). So the rhythm guitar and bass and vocal were done in one take, and the lead (on the Strat, so I could take advantage of that long, long neck and play way up on the frets) in two takes. And it’s okay. I almost sound like I know what I’m doing.

I half expect the Coventry writers’ group will like it; I’m also certain it’s not going to get performed on stage, or played on the radio, there or anywhere else. At best, it can get added to the list of songs for the “12 Reasons Why Joe Is Going to Hell” album (that means I have six now, I think). If I can generate a more tasteful song for the Bedworth Folk Festival by the middle of June, I will.

I did a quick check, and I have written 5 decent songs in the past 5 months, so I am on schedule, as it were; I have “Last Song of the Highwayman” (February), “The Dead Sweethearts Polka” (March), “In the Shadows, I’ll Be Watching You” (April), and both “Angel in Chains” and “Song for Charity (and Faith, and Hope)” in May. The last four are the result of Coventry writers’ group challenges, so the group have definitely been good for me. I think I’ll stop considering “Up in Heaven, the Angels Play Music” (February) as a “keeper”; I’m not as happy with it as I am with the others.

I’ve also done 4 musications: one in January for Stan Good (“Take-Out Food”), and three in May—two for Skip Johnson (“Dust on the Moon” and “Young Donohue”) and one for Glynda Duncan and her daughter Sherri (“One Lonely Night Closer to Gone”). May was apparently a very productive month, for some reason.

And next? I don’t perceive any lyrics crying to be let out, so that means I’ll go search for something to musicate. There’s plenty of material out there, that I’ve tried not to read while I was working on other things; I can do it now. There are even some people who have asked (and I like being in demand).

What I don’t have is gigs. I think that’s because I haven’t solicited any, and the obvious answer is I should go do that. I have Roland’s phone number now, and maybe he’d like to do something together.

Elsewhere, the Southern Oregon Songwriters’ June newsletter is done (6 pages this time, because of a huge article from songwriting teacher Wayne Cohen), and I have my topics for this week’s column for the newspaper, and I’ve engaged in a little futile activity by answering a couple of “musician wanted” ads on craigslist (and will engage in further futile activity by applying for some more jobs). I think I get to play music this week Wednesday afternoon (at the Pub), Wednesday evening (at the music store), Friday night (at City Hall), Saturday afternoon (at the library), and Saturday night (at an open mike at the Arts Center). Lots of activity, but no money.

Joe

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