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Posts Tagged ‘rock music’

A review! 3-out-5 stars for Fearless Freep

September 25, 2010 3 comments

Soundscraper says 3-out-of-5 stars. I'll take it!

My music is reviewed in this week’s Vegas Seven magazine, one of the weekly rags covering the weekend scene in the city. An acquaintance at work writes the regular music column. He’s got his own band, a self-described “post-apocalyptic doom death metal band” called Dead Neon, which I’ve seen a few times. I told him about my own DIY hobby a while ago and gave him a copy of This Island Life, which he gently made fun of. When I gave him a copy of YSYIC after a work meeting, I expected much the same result. Certainly, I didn’t expect him to like it. He emailed me about 20 minutes after I gave him the cd, said he listened to some of it on the car ride back to his office and enjoyed what he heard. He wanted to know where people could get the music online. “Why?” I wrote back, genuinely surprised. “You going to write about it?” So that was what prompted my bandcamp Website. I have been patiently waiting for this week’s edition of the magazine ever since, kind of nervous about what he would write. When he told me he put my real name (not just Fearless Freep) in the write-up, I was really nervous.  But he was kind, and it feels good to be featured. He likened my voice to Tom Petty’s (yeah!) and he described subjects of my songs as “characters pushed to desperate margins by their thwarted desires and skewed loyalties.” The guitars, he wrote, are “in your face,” which seems funny because this whole thing was recorded with a crappy single 8″ practice amplifier, not a particularly in-your-face rig. Though I think he meant the phrase more in terms of the guitars being so prominent t in the mix – not all that common in an age of synthesized radio rock. In the end, I got 3-of-5 stars on the rating system. Fair … and totally cool! I kept a few copies for posterity.

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One Cent: I don’t have any sense!

September 19, 2010 Leave a comment

Toss a penny. Make a wish.

girl i’ve counted two times now

you’ve given me the runaround

you don’t wanna put me down before you pick me up

maybe the third time’s a charm

you know i’d never twist your arm

but i swear on this here guitar that i’m not giving up

what do you think? should i heed your advice

and write you out of my life?

it’s all right …

darlin’ if the world was flat

i’d walk you to the edge and back

throw a penny down and down

to see if it would make sound

i’d watch that penny fall

one cent ain’t worth nothin’ at all

it’s never gonna make us rich

unless you make a wish on it

c’mon now, what do you say?

i won’t keep you out too late

or have i made a big mistake …

mistake in asking you?

girl i think you wanna go

yeah i just got this hunch you know

from up above, down below

so i press on through

should i heed your advice

and write you out of my life?

it’s allright …

Dive In … to the past

August 28, 2010 2 comments

Fearless Freep's stand-in getting ready to take a dive.

This was one of the first songs I ever wrote, Dive Right In, circa 1998. It’s about making music without really knowing how to make music … or play guitar … or arrange a song, etc. The first time I recorded it, I didn’t realize I was swinging the beat in my head – didn’t know what swing time was, in fact. That makes programming drums and software instruments pretty hard. No wonder it never sounded right to me!

I can’t remember if I wrote this song before I started calling my music project Fearless Freep, or after. It was right around the same time. I remember thinking how the lyrics dovetailed with the name, which is an obscure reference to a bugs bunny cartoon. You know the one – Yosemite Sam drafts Bugs at gunpoint into a high-dive act when the real performer, Fearless Freep, fails to show up by curtain time. Hilarity ensures. Of course Bugs gets the upper hand. Later, when I found a band already existed called Fearless Freep, I was devastated for five minutes.

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Dive Right In

But you know I’m gonna dive right in

Cause it’s the best way that I know to begin again

C’mon – it’s easy, believe me, when you dive right in

Right in

There’s no right, and honey there’s no wrong

You can take a left, you take a right, you keep moving on

There’s no wrong turns now

There’s only lessons to learn now

When we dive right in

Right in

C’mon in now, the water’s fine

Forget your towel, you’re gonna drip dry

Sink or swim ’cause there’s no better time than now

C’mon give it a try

And dive right in

Right in

You can live your life by one little rule

You can just dip a toe, you could drown in it too

So c’mon

Do what you will now

But I’ll drink my fill now

I’m gonna dive right in

Right in

Pack my suit I’m leaving tonight

I’m off I’m gonna find out the rest of life

Maybe we’ll meet another time

But now I’m gonna find of a little peace (piece) of (my) mind

But you know I’m gonna dive

right

in

now …

Caution Yellow: Out of lemons, rock

August 22, 2010 2 comments

Got stood up for a date recently. It’s ok though; got a nice little rocker of a song out of it. Caution Yellow is below.

Loving my new toy.

In other news I am LOVING my new guitar interface. So much easier to play clean and monitor what I’m playing – now the only sound I hear is post-effects. Before, I was just micing a crappy practice amplifier. Lots of speaker hiss, ambient noise (the dishwasher, air conditioner, etc.), and I could always hear the raw sound sound from the speaker beneath the monitor sound in the headphones. Annoying … but no longer. Now, my only excuse for the guitar not sounding great is that I am not a great guitar player. Working on it.

This is the first song w/ the new setup: interface and Garageband 9 – got a new computer, too. I am discovering a few cool new things in the new version of Garageband. Thank you, Apple, for totally kicking ass!

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Caution Yellow

here I am again, waiting on a girl

and she’s late

Maybe she’s not coming at all

call it flaky, call it fate

but i’d really like …

like the chance …

the chance to read the tattoo that she hides

so i’ll go for broke, hell i’m broken anyway

it’s caution yellow as i accelerate through the light

driving home again

all alone again

she never showed up

any fool could see

anyone but me would give up

but i’d really like …

like the chance …

the chance to read the tattoo that she hides

so i’ll go for broke, hell i’m broken anyway

it’s caution yellow as i accelerate through the light

accelerate through the light

is it green?

is it red?

if it’s yellow, stop ahead …

here i am again waiting on some girl to show up

it don’t look like she’s coming at all

and that’s just pretty fucked up

but i’d really like …

like the chance …

the chance to read the tattoo that she hides

so i’ll go for broke

hell i’m broken anyway

it’s caution yellow as i accelerate through the light

OMFG! Download the new record, FREE

August 11, 2010 3 comments

Hello Freepers! I know you’re Freeping excited about the new record, You’re Still You in Camouflage.

The good news is, you don’t have to wait any longer. Go to my new bandcamp Website and download the entire thing now in the format of your choice! OMFG!!

For future reference, you can always use the FREEP MUSIC DOWNLOADS hyperlink at the right.

For you email subscribers, the website is: http://www.fearlessfreep.bandcamp.com. You’ll definitely want to bookmark it or add it to your favorites!

From the site, you can stream every song on 2009’s This Island Life and the just-released You’re Still You in Camouflage. There are several free downloads between both records. If you want whole albums, YSYIC is free – at least for right now. This Island Life can be purchased in its entirety for $8. It’s worth it, just ask my Mom!

Rock on!

C

A Freeway View: What is truth?

July 18, 2010 8 comments

 

The next record: You're still you in camouflage

 

Hello Freep Nation. Long time, no post. But fear not – or LESS! The new record is done except for some mixing. More info on that later.

Meantime, below is a new tune called A Freeway View. I’ve found as I’m writing more that things tend to get less autobiographical, or that the autobiographical stuff gets jumbled all up with other material. That’s the case here. I’ve added “true” and “false” statements below so you can see what I mean.

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A Freeway View

I’m pulling full-time duty for a part-time job (false)

My apartment’s a mess (true, but not too bad)

My ma’ raised a slob (not really)

I got an empty fish tank (nope)

And couple guitars, but no food (true on both counts)

And I know the remote’s around here somewhere (i know where it is)

But there’s nothing on the tube (true. tv sucks)

So I don’t effin’ care

I crank the amp (true)

Until the lady upstairs calls the super (false. she’s never complained)

Honey, can we take it slow?

Cause I’m a long, long way from home (true)

And there’s so much I don’t know (true, but i’d never admit it)

Be my family tonight

There’s some Chinese take-out at the back of the fridge (false. there’s some tuna salad and tomato that i gotta throw out though)

I got a view of the freeway and the railroad bridge (false)

If I could make her come back

Just by flicking a switch then I would (false. hehe)

I got a couple good friends, we drink a couple of pints (true. i have great friends!)

Our motto’s ‘Fake it ‘til we make it’ (false. but it’s good motto.)

That’s the secret to life

There’s no rhyme or no reason

No way to ask why

Cause it’s useless

Honey, can we take it slow?

Cause I’m a long, long way from home

And there’s so much I don’t know

Be my family tonight

We can talk in circles

We all got something to prove

We’re all terrible liars

They can see our lips move (i don’t know what any of that means. i stole the main rhyme from a paul westerberg song)

It’s a sign, we can run, but not hide

From our youth

Yeah, what do they say about pride, before the fall?

It doesn’t matter to me (not exactly up on my Bible reading)

Cause I got none at all (false)

I’m go stay out late maybe

Find me a tall brunette (nope, cause it’s a work night)

It’s a Cinderella story, sad but true

You can take it or exchange it

For an IOU

But in the end it don’t matter

Cause you never pay for what you get (just making up rhymes, here)

Honey, let’s just take it slow

Cause I’m a long, long way from home

And there’s so much I don’t know

Be my family tonight

That’s right

Be my family tonight …

76 miles to an oldie-but-a-goody

June 20, 2010 5 comments

I have a lot of songs about driving.

 

Here’s an oldie-but-a-goody. It’s the second time I’ve recorded this song: 76 Miles (Fife)

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I was thinking about this tune the other day after a friend made a comment about my last song – that it had “two parts that didn’t go together.” She was talking about the bridge, which I re-did. In that case, she was right. The two parts didn’t belong. (See previous posts.)

But sometimes I like songs that jam seemingly incongruous parts together, as this one does. The main part of the song is 4/4 time. But the chorus is in 3/4 time AND at three-quarter speed. It makes for a drastic change – and it makes it tough to record the transition. But the effect is neat.

The song is about the four-hour drive from K-zoo to Petoskey when I used to live up north. There was a place where the divided highway ended around a little town called Fife Lake (shout out!) and there was a highway mileage sign indicating Petoskey was still 76 miles away. Hence – “the end of the highway, but not the end of the road …”

The few folks out there familiar with version one will note a few changes. The first two verses are re-phrased to stretch out over twice as many measures, and are minor lyrical changes. The bridge is entirely different.