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WEEK 3/52: Something For Nothing (08/28/12)

Brunswick Project on August 27, 2012 19:31

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Dinosaurs in my backyard
Come back to life
Come back tonight
Just sit tight

They'll steal your babies
Turn out the lights
Turn out the lights tonight
Alright, we want

Something, something
Something, something
For nothing, nothing, nothing for
Something, something
Something, something
For nothing, nothing, nothing at all

Oh I haven't forgotten
The tragic events of this past year
Burned in my mind
All the time

Don't think twice about taking
Some personal time
Some personal time
Well, personally I want


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  • Brunswick Project
    Brunswick Project on August 27, 2012 19:33

    This is a song that was brought to life over the past two years by lots of continued interest and encouragement from Joel. Sometimes you make something and don't think much of it, but those you work with will respond to something in it, and it allows you to develop it and to discover more than you could have imagined. Therein lies the magic of the collaborative process.

    The music was written in 2009/2010. Musically it's a 10-bar blues waltz in E, using only the 3 major chords in that key. But what I liked about it, what kept me revisiting it, was that it starts on the dominant chord (the 5th), which is usually the last of the chords to be revealed in a traditional blues song... And it ends on the tonic, the 'home' chord, which is usually the first chord you hear. So in a way it always felt somewhat backwards to me. It was also written at a time when I was trying to write these complex grandiose songs, but was feeling stuck in a box, so I made a conscious decision this time to use only 3 simple chords.

    A year later I was going through old recordings and adding to them, and I sang the vocal on top of the 10-bar blues. (You can hear the original sketch recordings in the extras this week.) The words for the chorus and the rhythmic pattern they form were already written, and the rest just sort of came out. I'll be the first to admit I didn't really know what the song was about, though I have an inkling now (I'll let you come to your own conclusions). But it confirms my feeling that art isn't created being about something, it becomes about something.

    - Steve

    (I will say that the second verse was inspired by the season 2 finale of Breaking Bad, an episode entitled "ABQ" - watch it and you'll see the reference to taking some "personal time.")

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