Sunday, August 16, 2009

These Ain't Tears of Joy

Here’s a little nugget of gold I’ve saved up. Entering the sixth month of the blog—just a little past the halfway mark and so now I am able to bring out some of the treasures I have set aside. Tracks to look out for in the future will be around Halloween and look out for Veterans’ Day. Today’s track is a sweet little tune Scot used to call a “Belt Buckle Polisher.” He always wanted a song or two in the set so that the couples in the room could saddle on up next to one another a couple times throughout the night.

The words of this song aren’t exactly romantic though. Scot and I were living in Iowa City, Iowa when Scot wrote this song. We put together a big mailing of demos with this material, which we sent out to producers and publishers, mostly in Nashville. Scot was really hoping that someone would pick him up as a songwriter. There was one this one guy who sent Scot lots of encouragement, but no contract. Scot sort of followed this guy’s career and I guess he went on to produce a couple hits. Scot and I would often wonder later why we hadn’t been more persistent with this guy? Now I would be!

Scot was very much in a period of discovering Country & Western music, through Rockabilly. In this song, I’m pretty sure he was experimenting with just how far over the top he could go with the genre. The song is called, “I Cry A Little,” and has so many sweet, fun, and very plaintive yodels throughout. Some days there just end up being a lot of things to cry about.

The artwork is an adorable drawing Scot did of our son James. James is and always was, an ‘Animal Man.’ We have a dog now, and when we brought the puppy home, James announced how proud he was to “Now be a member of the Proud Pantheon of Dog Owners!” Scot wasn’t all that great at drawing animals. They all sort of look like this guy, but with slightly modified ears and tails. Rabbits, like Chihuahuas (which is what we have) have a preponderance of rapid twitch muscles. It’s what makes them so fast (and in the case of a Chihuahua, so twitchy.)



Blue days are lived in blue houses. It is for this reason I bring another version of John William’s original song, “Blue House.” Those of you have been following this memorial blog since the beginning will remember the second entry, another wonderful version of this song, complete with totally different lyrics. This track was recorded one night at a “Basement Collaboration” hosts “Plank Road” session. Not sure what is up with the reverb, but dig those lyrics! Be sure to give a specific listen to the bass line—some of Scot’s best.

The artwork for today is an original drawing Scot did in 1999. A lot of his artwork referenced San Francisco, which like any great city, has its iconic landmarks. Here we see the Bay Bridge and “the pyramid,”--don’t think it’s the Trans America Tower any more. That’s another thing, naming rights? I guess we don’t have the Sears Tower any more either.

This drawing was done with a soft, broad-tipped graphite pencil on Bristol Board. The color is his usual transparent acrylic wash. Scot loved wet-on-wet, which we see here in a couple places. I love this little man. He’s kind of “a guy” trying to get ready to do some business. He is still able to fly, despite the tremendous size of the tie he’s taken on, and as always though, he finds a way to get his message out.

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