Language Learning (From the Archive)

In 2009 my good friend, 蛋糕, was kind enough to collaborate on an exciting and difficult a cappella project. With the meager tools we had at the time and our genetically limited vocal range, we threw all we had at this temperamental art project.  Like many of our ideas at the time, the song began to develop around our foreign disposition within the big red goose. By the time we had hammered out a general tune and enough lyrics to sustain our creative thirst we’d stepped right into the competitive language learning market and, by my scale, came out better than expected. So go ahead and plug this one-take a cappella-draft in between your NoRain and Free Fallin’ road trip exercises and you may find yourself learning a little language and culture.

Enjoy!

Original song and lyrics are filed under it’s original published date: 2009-07-06 

 

“Merry Christmas From The Family” (The Christmas Duck)

—–“Merry Christmas From The Family” (The Christmas Duck)——-

Deep down in Colorado
way back in the mountains
beside a bubbling creek
long past the the doe and buck

There lives a stubborn lady
a woman to be avoided
a lass who could cause a ruckus
where misfortune runs amuck

Ten years to this Christmas day
at the holiday animal pageant
she put forth her finest lot
and showed a mangey duck

That witch, she cursed and swallowed
and brewed up all her demons
she brought out all her vices
and blessed her self with luck

And just as you would know it
from George to Ben Bernanke
she pinned on her blue ribbon
and departed like a shmuck

Yet justice is expected
it came what was deserved
the biggest of all her toes
collided with her truck

To the ground she crumpled
down among the refuse
in dog hair and ducky feathers
her hands deep in the muck

Reddened and enraged
she vanished into thin air
away like our last furry friend
into the night she snuck

Never to be seen again
that witch she is remembered
she’s in among the aspens
and sings of what she’s struck

Ten years this Christmas day
we deep in Colorado
take time out to remember
and listen for that Christmas Witches duck

ka QUACK!

——–
Lyrics: 帅巴 J
Music & Composition: 帅巴 J

Footwear Scenester

—-Footwear Scenester—-

I got a pair of chuck taylors and some stripy socks
My toes stretch to seven when I’m cruising the blocks
My knickers pulled high, my flappers above the thigh
you may even think that I’m that magic guy.

But I’m not, but I’m not

I’m a scenester player, from the eighties or later.
When your looking at me, there’s only one thing you see.
and that’s my body, my sexy body.

I’m stepping in my loafers, my hush puppy floaters
My chords real casual, my hair real actual.
In long flowing threads, I’ll take you to bed
you may even think I’m crazy in the head.

But I’m not, … but I’m not

I’m a scenester player, from the eighties or later.
When your looking at me, there’s only one thing you see.
and that’s my body, my sexy body.-

—-
pah, scenester player, you’re not real, your a fake
you think you just put it on and do what it takes?
it’s not what you’re wearing, it’s your attitude
you can’t change who you are based on your mood?
find yourself and to that be true,
go figure it out
and match That to your shoes.
—-

pah,
girl The American Dream
says I can be who I please

My treads say ladies, and so do my jeans.
I’m sitting low and tight, if you know what I mean
I keep my hair clean, I’m cool on the scene,
you may even think I’m a prepubescent teen.

But I’m not, … but I’m not

I’m a scenester player, from the eighties or later.
When your looking at me, there’s only one thing you see.
and that’s my body, my sexy body.

I’m kickin’ off my deckies, and I’m poppin the collar,
I love my stain-resistant kakis, and I tip top dollar
with my sleeves rolled up, and cuffs real high
you may even think I’m a ivy league guy.

But I’m not, … but I’m not

I’m a scenester player, from the eighties or later.
When your looking at me, there’s only one thing you see.
and that’s my body, my sexy body.

——–
Lyrics: 帅巴 J
Composition: 帅巴 J
Music: Apple Inc.

Christopher’s Birthday

Hooray! A celebration! My Apogee Duet arrived! My Grado SR80 headphones arrived! My microphones, microphone stand, microphone cables, … they all arrived. AND it was Christopher’s birthday.. and thus, a song arrived too!

…pictures to come…

An October Contest

A contest was organized, the rules were clear and concise.  The deadline was October 22nd, but flexible.

As stated:

3 minutes
Lyrics and music
Topic: cutting grass
Required words: apple sauce, cuticle, & macadamian
Deadline: Tuesday October 20

Here was my entry:

Yurtistry, with Dan and John

A short trip into the northern glasslands of China with our visitor Matt. We arrived, set up in a yurt, went out for a ‘ride’ on some horses, returned to find our things disheveled by some sheep, moved yurts, ate some dinner, wrestled some mongolians, played with some cows, chased some chickens, drank, watched the stars, went to bed, listened to the rain on canvas above our heads, woke up, drank milk, rode the motorbike to the road, caught the bus, fell asleep, and arrived back in Hohhot.

It was like going to Colorado for the day. Not a bad way to spend a night. It was quiet.

We recorded this while out and about in one of the tourist camps full of yurts. A delightful audio clip AND the first Dan & John duo interview. A truly special experience.

Plenty of photos available on Dan’s photo site. As directed to by the front page. Or through his blog.

(errors? hmmm goto: http://john.from.thecalifornias.org/Media/Yurtistry%20(louder).m4a for the file)

Evening Recording Session

Rain poured down all night and into the morning. Our plans for a massive mountain bike ride was heavily diluted and we sprung onto plan B. Dan and I rearranged the house a bit and I moved my queen bed into the ‘lobby’ as dan dismantled his and took ownership of mine. Only one broken glass later we were moving parts of Dan’s bed down stairs and across the ‘quad’ into Becci’s extra room, from which we were extracting my new single bed. Still stiff as a board and with a few broken planks I was happy to have more space in my already large spacious corner of the apartment. Dan graciously stuck to the plan and heaved beds up and down stairs and within the hour we were all cleaned up and tucked back into our apartment.

About an hour later we called B to get some lunch and revise our previous plans. The suggested in town bicycle ride accompanied by small shopping stops and lunch hit home and we embarked. The rain fell harder as a result. Dan and I were wearing shorts. My hands were cold, but the weather was warm enough.

A man passed us along the way carrying five locked bicycles in his bike-truck. I wanted to kick the thief’s teeth in. Dan and Becci asked me to relax. I held on as long as I could and then followed their advice. We continued on.

Parking our bikes we successfully obtained a new sleeping bag for me, a head lamp (for me), lunch (for all of us), a hand drier, and a soap dispenser (for the school). Feeling successful we stopped at the school to drop our goods and then jumped down stairs to pick up a new phone for me, where upon Dan lost his mind and Becci followed quickly.

Less than 30 minutes later we were in the apartment drinking and writing songs. Close to 4 hours later Becci picked up her keyboard and Dan put away his guitar and we called it a night. The number of tracks recorded exceeding 15. This is the finest of them all. Un-edited. Un-cut. Un-professional. Yet fantastically awesome. I hope you do enjoy.

NOTES REGARDING THE SONG:
Daye (大爷)Pronounced something like Dye-yea, is translated to mean uncle, but has context of any elder and respect man. Strangers whom you meet at shops, stores, help you with directions, or watch after your things can all be referred to as daye. In this case Daye is our school’s night watch man and security guard, handy man, janitor, and general go to guy. And he’s got the most personality of all employees at Aston, including myself. With the most respect, this song was written and recorded, and we all hope to make him as happy and comfortable as we possibly can. Hat’s off to our Daye.

Project Inventory Blowout

It’s important, Dan says and I agree, to keep inventory low and maintain our project momentum. This project has been on the shelf for about a month now, collecting dust, requiring a great deal of polishing, and weighing down our All American Creativity and Freedom Balloon Ride Festival. Therefore, in order to save resources and set ourselves free, we have decided to pull it off the shelf and we’re passing the savings on to you!

Fortunately, with this number out of my hair, I can now spend time on grooming new projects and my mustache. I’m excited about our upcoming projects and hope you are looking forward to our next quality feature. Stay tuned.

Song Background:
This little number came while walking back from the office about two months ago. Settled nicely into our neighborhood, we continually received the attention of every single individual within sight. This confused us, we no longer felt alien, in fact we corroborated that our comfort level was that of our native home. It was becoming more and more difficult to make distinctions between our global locals. Burdened by our chnscienceness, we felt there was only one way to express ourselves. This song is it.