The Usual Suspects…

So I finally listened through and edited the hours of live recordings I had on my Samsung phone and selected some to upload for your listening pleasure.

I was playing in Antigua solo, then in duos, and finally dawned on me to start a funk power trio. We started at Cafe No Se, then other bars, and as usual, had to do the musician shuffle and find subs. As I scrambled for players, the sound changed. It went Latin, and upon meeting Tom Grenzner, blues harpist extraordinaire, a little juke joint.

The next season, I expanded to a quartet, and we started to play shows in some great bars. People were dancing, and fun was had. Again, found subs as players came and went, so Usual Suspects was an inside joke on how often the lineup turned over. When I knew I was returning to the States, I decided to properly record live my farewell gig. Dinosaurio Records released it, and you can get it here.

Que viva the Usual Suspects!

"I'm not in a perfect world…"

Surprisingly, this song made the karaoke books, probably through my distribution deal in Japan for this record.

This is probably the most pop song I ever wrote during one of the darkest times of my life. There is something about the happy-sad combination that I am hopelessly drawn to, that sometimes makes you want to laugh and cry at the same time. So this is the classic story of unrequited love, with one sitting on a broken heart and the other conflicted yet committed to a seemingly perfect union with a “perfect girl”.

Musical touchstones include Stevie Wonder, Patti Page, and Groove Armada. This was sequenced on Reason and done on ProTools Free, added drums and vocals at Studio G Brooklyn. The video was done in Rotor.

Affiliate links to this tune:

Apple Music

Amazon

Ebay out-of-print CD

“As we all go down…”

In light of the impeachment hearings, I am releasing a new video of an older tune.

I wrote this song after being inundated by news of bad politics, dysfunction in society and social media, climate change, and police brutality. I messed around with Garageband and came up with the arrangement, with a bow to Herbie Hancock on the keyboard riff, Nina and Aretha on the vocal lines, and some 6/8 electric blues. I created this video through Rotor using stock footage.

Affiliate links for this song:

Apple Music
Amazon
Bandcamp
Out-of-print CD from Ebay

Your Blues

Stand back no more to see
But an unrevised history
It’s an unsteady world
But why we gotta act like dogs to live and let die

Picking fights with each other
Precious loser, you can’t love another
Zero sum he gain you lose
But you can’t pick and choose, pick and choose

(Chorus)
Can’t look me in the eyes as you take your shots
The blood on your hands will come out in the wash

How can you stand by and watch your brother
Fall and suffer at the hands of another
How far are we from done
From disconnecting, thinking we’re the only one

Na-na-na-na-na. hey, yeah

This ship of fools gonna sink with nobody steering us
Safe and sound, blind leading them blind as we run aground
Who’s there to save us when we gonna drown
The water keeps rising as we all go down

(Chorus)
Na-na-na-na-na. hey, yeah

Spend your life, break your back for a system that bruises you
Twenty lashes in jail when it fails you accuses you
Don’t exist in the eyes of the law, they can do with you as they please
You stand up for yourself and they bring you to your knees

(Chorus)
Na-na-na-na-na. hey, yeah

Music in Antigua, part 1

I uploaded some more tracks from my last season playing in Antigua, Guatemala. Pardon the background noise, these were recorded on my phone but the performances should come through. Duo and trio work.

Muchissimas gracias a Andy GarcíaFernando OrtizMiguel AngelDavid Gerow, and Dave Mendez, some with rehearsal, some without. You make it sound so easy.

Usual Suspect stuff coming up next.

Dance like no one’s watching

Today I’m dropping the third installment in a series of videos I’m making of my past tunes. This week it’s one of my favorite songs, “Last Night”.

This song was inspired by a visit to Kilmainham Gaol in Ireland and is about a prisoner’s conjugal visit the night before execution.

Dancing lends such kinetic energy to a song, but I was never one to work with a choreographer and backup dancers. So for this video, I grabbed all the stock footage on dancing and threw it together, and – surprise! – it actually worked. More vogueing than you can shake a stick at, and my favorite one so far.

Here are affiliate links where you can get this song:

Apple Music

Amazon

Ebay – out of print Japanese CD

Whiskey Chitra

During my stint in Antigua, I did record a lot of gigs on my cellphone. I am just starting to dig through the archives and realized just how fun and how talented the pool of musicians is there.

Here is a jam I did with Gypsy Chitra at Whiskey Den, I affectionately remember as the Whiskey Chitra gig.

Big ups to David Gerow​ and Fernando Ortiz​ for awesomeness. I still have no idea what song this was… LOL

#antigualivemusic #gypsychitra #whiskeyden

Another video…

I am working on dropping a video or some archival footage weekly, so you can enjoy something from the catalog, while I am working on next steps.

This week, I took a stab at a lyric video using the Rotor online software. They are just developing their text overlay, so transitions weren’t available, like they would be in FinalCut. Still, it was good challenge to make something not too clunky using only timing.

And here’s where I post affiliate links to my music:

Apple Music

Amazon

Ebay – out of print CD

Hasta el proximo video!

Hello Everybody!

I am starting to work more on my content while the record has been delayed for a moment. So, what better way than revisiting the archives and compiling songs from my previous records?

I have started to make videos using Rotor and FinalCut. So here is the first one:

You can download this song on Apple Music and Amazon.  Or you can get a collector’s out-of-print CD on Ebay here.

By the way, these are affiliate links to the above websites, so I can earn commission on any resulting sales.   It does help, while I’m in between things. : )