Saturday, November 15, 2014

4. Freedom & Other Delusions

Complete freedom is not an easy thing to deal with.  If you could choose your ideal life, it is my experience that it will drive you kind of nuts.  I have also found that if a person has a choice of anything they could do in life, there's no guarantee that they'll be good at it.  In fact, there are many people in this world who aren't good at anything.  This doesn't make them terrible people or a danger to others; they're just not good at what they do.  And it doesn't matter what their interest level is.  There are plenty of people who are living their "passion" and are absolutely terrible at it.  I have worked at offices before where almost everybody wanted to do something else besides work at that office and in that profession.  Once they were able to do what they'd always dreamed of, these folks were often very bad at it and it made them quite miserable, too.  They were generally much better doing a job they hated.  So my whole point is that freedom is a double-edged sword.  It can drive you nuts and cast a harsh light on your character.  It's so much easier to stay in a job that you dislike.  It gives you a good excuse to not find out the awful truth.

Anyhow, what you hear on this track is a nice little arrangement (if I do say so) of fake drums, electric piano and string quartet.  Hopefully, I make my point during this tune.  If I don't, it's still pleasant.  Maybe you think it's terrible.  I don't know.  I'm not you.  But it would be resoundingly ironic for me to suddenly realize that I'm not any good at something I've worked hard at for my entire life.  Another thing about complete freedom is that when you match it up with a certain amount of solitude, one's thoughts stray toward the philosophical.  That's exactly what happened here.  The perpetual struggle is to find subject matter.  I don't write love songs.  I try to avoid cliches like the plague (see what I did there?), but at the same time, I want my tunes to be about something.  Not only that, but I want them to tell stories and make sense.  Plus, most of them are structured so that they have a beginning, a middle and an end.  That means if you swap verses, say, you put the middle verse at the end and vice-versa, the tune won't make sense.  Of course, there's always the option to write a song about nothing.  I've only done that once.  There wasn't anything I could do with the tune other than that.  The results were actually pretty outstanding.  But by and large, I want for my tunes to have structure, content and coherence.  I also want them to sound good.

This is most my "pop" album of the five I've released.  It's also my least focused effort.  That isn't necessarily a bad thing.  In these days of internet fame, all you need is one tune.  And it doesn't necessarily need to be your own.  There are YouTube videos of precocious teenagers covering tunes that rack up millions of hits.  And then there's the example of Psy, as well.  When renown works like that, the album's impact is diminished.  Even among indie bands where the album is still a viable format, most releases are built around just one or two tracks.  When my discs go out for airplay, the result is fairly chaotic, because there is never a clear single.  When I was writing the tunes for this album, my intention was to make every track a potential single, hence the variety (or lack of focus, take your pick).  And as always, the songs that I end of liking the most are not the most compatible with airplay.  Anyway, this post has gotten waaaay too long.  All I can add is that I hope you enjoy this track.  And I hope you're really good at what you do and that it makes you deliriously happy.  And that freedom doesn't drive you crazy.                        


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