Singer, Songwriter, Musician
Photos By: Janee Caroll
2017 has been a hell of a year. Lots of ups and downs. I did not complete everything on my New Years Resolutions list but I make a dent in it. One of those was to do more music and while I didn't record most of it, I did write more.
Unfortunately, 2017 has not ended well. A day after Thanksgiving I lost my mom after her long struggle with Stroke related Dementia.
Through Pain and heartache comes creativity, I guess.
So I end this year with more questions than answers. What happens next? Life continues on.
Death of a parent is strange thing. Its part of the next evolution. Its another step that pushes you on and makes you a different person altogether. Certain things in life are those stepping stones, graduate school, marriage, buying a first home, having your first child. All of these things are milestones that lead you to the next journey. Wether good or bad they physically make you a different person. You automactily have a different view on life, your desires shift and your focus changes. It's gonna happen to all of us at some point.
It's these times that you should put down the phones, get off the computer and really take notice of everything going on around you. Take a deep breath and really savor the moment because from that point on, you will be different. Enjoy those around you, make time to catch up with an old friend, in person, over drinks, not just text messages. It can be a difficult thing to do since life is crazy but you may never get that chance again. I believe that the family and friends we surround ourselves with, make up a large part of who we are. Once they are gone, all that's left are the memories. Now is the time to make those memories.
Life is challenging enough with the pressure society puts on us let alone the pressure we put on ourselves. I am definitely a victim of that pressure but I hope to change that next year. I encourage everyone else to do the same
Falling Over You
Songs come about so randomly sometimes. With this song, I wanted to try some different songwriting techniques ,so I grabbed my trusty capo (a capo is used to raise the pitch of the guitar so you can play in a different key).
Just messing around I found the main riff. It got stuck in my head, I couldn't stop, so I knew I had to do something with it. But the only lyrics and melody I could only come up with was "lean over you" . Well, what happens when you lean on something or someone? You often fall over. Thats how this one started....
I know I know, another song about falling in love, I can't help it happens to me at least once a day,
Besides the songwriting I really wanted to work on my recording and engineering skills.
I have watched countless hours of tutorials on the subject. I LOVE IT.
Actually, I must admit that usually when I do stuff like this, Its because I want total control.
I want to say that I did absolutely everything. That there was no one else involved in the creating of this piece. Not that I think I can do everything. I know that there are people much better at it than I am, but,
there is a sense of accomplishment when you present something to the world and you are truly able to say,
no one else has had a hand in creating this.
Do I think I shit gold, abousolutely not , but this is all me, take it or leave it.
Some info on the most recent songs
A Fate Only I Can See
So Far 2017 has been a productive year. I have been trying to get as much new music out as possible.
Its not easy because I wear many hats while the creative process happens.
From the inception of the song to the writing and arranging, then recording, production, mixing ,artwork, I like to do it all. Mostly because Im a control freak. I have a vision and I have to see it through from beginning to end which is sometimes a good thing but has a big downside...I don't get all the songs out I would like.
I have lots of ideas but not the time . This year will hopefully be different
A Fate Only I Can See is a song about how the burdens of life generally come from within and often are hard to vocalize.I tend to hold my goals so high that they are to hard to reach. I compare my self to others and feel I whatever I do will never be as good as them. It often keeps me up at night while I obsess about it but it pushes me to keep doing better.
The Ending verse taken from :A Dream within a Dream-Edgar Allan Poe.
I have always liked his stuff. He is dark and has a good way of expressing it. I kinda felt that this excerpt was a close interpretation of how I feel when I get into this frame of mind
Cover sculpture "Three Dimensional/unconventional"-Pascal Queval
Pascal is my other mother. Her son is my best and oldest friend ( I met him in 3rd grade) so to say I have spent a lot of time with the family is an understatement. Her artwork was always around their house and was so unique. She never bragged about being an artist, its just who she is from deep within. I went to one of her art shows and snapped a picture of this guy. I always thought he was cool.
OTC SESSIONS 2017
A couple of weeks ago I hit up the OTC studios and hung out with one of my closest friends Bill Fulkerson. Bill runs a Podcast called OUTSIDE THE CINEMA dedicated to feature films running the gamut from Horror to Exploitation to Noir and Martial Arts and back. Since there are only so many movies can be reviewed , Bill has since taken upon the idea of the OTC sessions, where he brings in musical artists to perform in studio. I am fortunate enough to be among the first to help him along this journey.
Bill is one of the most genuine people I have ever come across. We have played in bands, shared laughs, heartbreak and a lifetime of memories together. Its amazing to know that we have been friends for longer than we have not been friends
Please help support his ventures by visiting outsidethecinema.com
Train To Heartache
Here is a brand new song "Train To Heartache", Name pretty much says it all.
Sometimes I build up things in my mind so immensely that when the event actually happens, It turns out nothing like I planned. I have the scenario set and I think I know exactly how the response will be until... it all goes wrong. At which point Im left question everything that has led up to it. Then the obsession starts, how could I have changed it? Why did it happen? I thought I knew how this would all play out, but no, I'm just left with confusion.
Well If you wanna get High, you gotta get Low
Writing music is a time consuming art for me. I don't often release new songs but I am always writing and recording . Sometimes its a simple riff or melody, sometimes the full idea flows out all at once. Either way I always go back and revise the crap out of things. Thats why things take so long...its never truly done for me.
I got the idea for this song just from the words "White Hair Girl". I dont know what it was, the melody just seemed to come out and I started building the song around it.
Sirens are beautiful yet dangerous creatures, who lured nearby sailors with their enchanting music and voices to shipwreck on the rocky coast of their island. The term "siren song" refers to an appeal that is hard to resist but that, if heeded, will lead to a bad conclusion.
Seems like in my life I have been "lured" many times ony to "shipwreck" later on. It was an easy subject to build on.