Week 4 – SAC Challenge 2016 – I’ve been to the mountaintop.

I’ve been to the mountaintop.

This (last) week, Emma-Lee challenged us to revisit two unfinished songs and to make a single new song out of them. I certainly have unfinished songs lying around, but I wan’t too happy about revisiting my stash – the songs are unfinished for good reasons :-).

These days, I enjoy co-writing much more than writing on my own.

Kathryn Jean contacted me for some lyric help. I “interviewed” her for the lyric idea, helped her organize her thoughts, pointing out where I heard verse, pre-chorus, chorus and bridge in her melodic ideas.

Kathryn’s lyric ideas were almost too rich. It’s always good to have more material that can be culled to reveal a song, but sometimes it becomes hard to see the forest for the trees. I gave her my opinion on what the POV should be and came up with the “three boxes” that described the arc of the song for one of the threads of thought inspired by her worksheet. That appears to have given her enough inspiration to continue.

That song is here <tbd>.

Then, I got the guilts at the last minute. Maybe if I rummaged around in my stash, I could find something I wasn’t disgusted with? The first two songs I bumped into were typical for me – political, but very far removed from each other. One was an aborted attempt to set MLK’s final speech to a blues song (his words make it seem, eerily, that he knew what would happen to him the next day). The other was a partial song that I wanted to donate to the U.S. TWP (Tax Wall Street Party).

I mashed them up and found new melody and chords for them. I’m not satisfied, yet, with the result, but the exercise was interesting. I feel that I found a new direction for this material and that I’ve found a way out of the corners these songs were trapped in.

Here is a draft of the new song (guitar / vocal, single mic) https://soundcloud.com/guitarvydas-1/sac-2016-week-4-mountaintop/s-PJHGB

 

Rap sheet elite
With screwy schemes
Repeat their deceit
Blow up all our dreams

I’ve been to the mountaintop
I’ve been to the mountaintop
And I saw the promised land

Six-packs of Cognac
Useless eaters
Heart attacks
Balance sheet cheaters

I’ve been to the mountaintop
I’ve been to the mountaintop
And I saw the promised land

My mind was filled with awe
Let’s tax Wall Street
Show ’em they’re not above the law

I’ve been to the mountaintop
I’ve been to the mountaintop
And I saw the promised land

 

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