April 5, 2022
HS07: 7M3 - Lullaby
Singing just to sing.
Last weekend, I roamed around Brooklyn for hours and hours singing to myself.
For me, singing with some sort of purpose has always been the important and elusive criteria for crafting songs. I want the creative work to answer for a few things. What am I really talking about here? What do the lyrics mean? Why this word instead of another? The constant battle to avoid cliché or coded message. (I’ve failed at both many times 😀). But, over the years, I think I learned the craft. So much depends “on a red wheelbarrow,” right?
There’s been a lot said during the pandemic about self-care, and even though I am not sure I subscribe to all of it, I can confidently say that if you want to feel good, find a place you feel safe, and belt one out. Sing. Just let it rip.
Because what I am finding lately is that singing without intent can be just as joyful.
Try chasing a melody while on a walk or hike, in the shower, or folding laundry. Don’t worry about the lyrics or the pitch—just try and find a simple phrase you can repeat over and over and play with it. It doesn’t have to be loud or voluminous—it can be a whisper, but the air must move from your belly to your head. You’re gonna feel better. I promise.
Decades ago, whether above my parents’ garage or in my wife’s basement, in Sam’s famous Whitehouse or in the back of the bus—you’d find me singing gibberish while stopping and starting a 4-track Tascam. Over and over, just singing, I’d see if I could catch the tail of a tune. If I was lucky, I’d be joined by Thomas and before that Jason P.—both magnanimous enough to let me ramble over chords for hours.
Jason P. and I tracked a handful of new songs following the recording of American Standard while at Morrisound, mostly to get the sketches down somewhere before we went on tour in 1995. Among them was the first ever recording of “Lucky” and today’s selection: “Lullaby.”
Also: GO HEELS