From my teens through my early 30’s, I was wholly obsessed with music; it was my world. I learned to play guitar (and a little piano), learned to write songs, and formed a band or three.
Life has a way of getting your attention, though, and there came a time when I needed to focus on my career as a developer more than my music.
Not a lot remains, unfortunately, because so many of my decent recordings were on cassette tapes (and they’ve all long-since dry-rotted!) I do think that, time permitting, before I die, I’ll get some of the old ones recording again for posterity.
Being from Tennessee...
…a country-phase may have been unavoidable. I love my homeland, its food, its people, its culture. (Except the racist parts which, hopefully, are on their last legs.) I grew up in a house where Hee-Haw and The Porter Wagner Show were staples. I’m a huge fan of all sort of hard-rock and metal, and I love jazz and classical. But country and bluegrass feel like “home,” and they’ll always have a special place in my heart.
In the late 90’s I was in a local country band and we covered the hits of the time. It was during that time frame that these songs were written. These recordings were made by a Nashville studio band.
"I Know You"
Unrequited love makes for the best songs.
She was the best-friend of a girlfriend, and I fell head-over-heels. She, being a really good person, would not betray her best friend (my girlfriend) for me, even though she was into me. And I had to respect that.
So I did what any self-respecting musician would do and I wrote a song. I don’t even know where she is these days, but the song lives on and pays homage to a very human moment in time.
The thing I remember most about this song is that I’d written the whole thing except for one line. There was a blank spot in the song and I had nothing to fill it. Just one line… and the song that I’d always consider my songwriting pièce de résistance would be complete.
It came to me in the bathtub at my apartment, and I ran out of the room, naked and wet, to write that last line: “I wish I didn’t know that who you know could sometimes make you cry.”
"Under the Weather"
Country music likes its… plays on words. As a songwriter, I always wanted my songs to mean something, to be serious… but that doesn’t mean you still can find a creative way to turn those phrases.
The most memorable thing about this song wasn’t the young lady who inspired it but instead my cousin on my daddy’s side who, once I met (about 10 years ago), turned out to be in the music business. Long story short, some folks in Nashville loved this song and for a second there I was almost sucked into what had been my dream twenty years earlier.
I turned them down.
Here it is, free. No record deals, no money under the table, no shafting artists to make record company execs richer. I hope you enjoy.
(By the way… my cousin never spoke to me again!)