I have no one set way of writing songs.
My first forays into the craft as a kid was scribbling lyrics in copy books – stacks of which are in my parents house somewhere!
Favourite songs of mine I’ve written have often been hatched in a state of “no thought” by this I mean that I just go into a trance of sorts and spend hours with a guitar,piano, drum machine or laptop and a pen and paper for lyrics.
For the purpose of the song I’m working on currently “Cut Loose” I wanted to write about my experience of making it to gain greater insight into my own creative process.
Fairly self-indulgent but also something I can look back on when I’m 80 odd and reminisce upon!
As a songwriter I am constantly torn between the two sides of my style. On one side there is a love of pop hooks in the vague of classic songs like “Be my baby” by the Ronettes and on the other hand there is a love of the more abstract styles of poetry and prose a la Kerouac, Cohen or even the new Father John Misty stuff I was listening to today in the gym. You can hear this exemplified in my folkier material from a few years back. In particular the tunes “Say My Name” and “Give Myself to You”.
This balance between pop and poetry is something I tried to strike on the soon to be released Polaroids EP but with “Cut Loose” what I want to do is make a statement with the lyrics and musical vibe beyond any contrived attempt at constructing a killer hook.
So what is the concept behind the statement I’m trying to make? As the song is only half written this blog will simply offer an insight as to what it is at this moment. A Polaroid snapshot If you will.
lyrics as of 19.04.17
Tired of living without soul, addicted to control. Cut chords, fry wires tonight.
Free a state we’ve never been, levitating in our dreams. Still seeking permission to fly.
Tied down no use. Born free cut loose.
True there’s no turning back, once the walls begin to crack. Feel every ounce of me shake.
Pray. It’s all we’ve ever known. Terrified to be alone, that structure will break.
Mind made no use, born free cut loose.
The concept of the song is a call to action to myself to “Cut Loose” of everything I feel inhibits me from moving towards my goals.
Songs for me are often influenced by a cocktail of the culture I am consuming at any given time. I recently read the book “Anti-fragile” by Nassim Taleb. The book explores the concept of structures that benefit from a lack of stability, be they economic or physical. As people we have to be robust to deal all that life throws at us. This idea of Anti- fragility weaves itself into “Cut Loose”.
For me the idea of the statement “Cut Loose” is a call to embrace the the constant movement of circumstances that happen around us. Right now I feel that is a antidote to the insanity of the world. Clinging or identifying with anything is the anthisesis of the statement of the song.
Here’s hoping the song isn’t as rambling as my explanation of the concept. “Inserts laughing emoji with tears”