Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year!
This week I posted my versions of two traditional Irish songs: "Molly Malone" and "Star of the County Down" which you can hear at http://www.reverbnation.com/eddiebiggins/songs

I enjoyed doing these so much, I'm sure there will be more.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Ballerina (art and lyric video)

This is a special one to me. I have many dancers in my life and this song is a tribute to them. The video features the brilliant artwork and photography of Adam Dalton Blake (http://sogartwork.weebly.com/) whom I've known since he himself danced in a production of The Nutcracker for which I provided sound.

The track can be downloaded, name-your-own-price (yes, that includes free) at Bandcamp (http://eddiebiggins.bandcamp.com/track/ballerina)
or Gumroad (https://gumroad.com/l/FBmoQ)

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Opposite Side of the Earth

I could give you a hundred reasons why the album I've been trying to put together for over a year isn't done yet. Laziness, procrastination, lack of time, etc. The truth is, most of the tracks are all recorded and many are mixed, but I could tweak them endlessly. However, there comes a time when you have to let them go into the world for others to hear. So I've decided that, rather than waiting to get a whole album's worth, I'll put each song out individually, as singles. Or perhaps I'll put some out in smaller collections of 2-4 songs. At any rate, I'm trying to put together simple videos for each song as well, for those who like to listen to their music on YouTube. Here is the first.

The Opposite Side of the Earth
buy at Bandcamp (name your price, any format)
buy at Gumroad (name your price, mp3 format)

Watch the lyric video:

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Ancient History

I have been writing songs since I was about twelve and have been home-recording them pretty much since the beginning. For many years, I did that by using two cassette recorders and bouncing tracks from one to the other, adding parts as I went. The result was horrible, noisy recordings that I thought would bring the music world running to my door. They didn't. Since then I've gone through a 4-track reel-to-reel, two 4-track cassette recorders (one of which I still have), an 8-track digital recorder with a 40G hard drive, a portable digital recorder which does sound-on-sound that I still sometimes use (in a way, similar to what I used to do with the old cassettes) and my latest, a 24-track digital machine that records on SD cards not much bigger than my thumbnail. Ah, technology.

In the past few weeks, I've been going through some of my old recordings. Sadly, several were lost forever due to a case of tapes containing the only copies being stolen from my car back in the mid-80s. I remember experimental pieces like "Cadence d'Appliance" that my brother Tim and I created using household objects like a typewriter, cups, coffee mugs, spoons and (I think) an egg beater. And there was the piece called "No" which featured a repeating 7/8 guitar figure with Tim's percussion and my other brother Sean, who was just a little kid at the time, moaning the word "no" in mostly frightened tones over and over again. Then there were now-forgotten songs like the rambling "Rocket Through Outer Space," which had no repeating sections (ooo...innovative) and of which I remember nothing, "Saga of a Superstar," from which I only remember the introductory chord progression, and "Big Louie," from which I remember this opening quatrain:
                 There once was a man named Big Louie
                 The greatest robber this world has ever seen
                 Pulling jobs all over the world
                 In his Cadillac colored green

The greatest gift I could get would be to have those tapes back.

But I have been listening to the surviving recordings because I was thinking it would be fun to re-record some of my old songs to see if I could reconnect with them. I figured I would just do some simple vocal/guitar renditions, perhaps re-writing a line here or there if I felt like it. But instead I decided, just for a chuckle, to post the original old recordings. Feel free to laugh, make fun of, whatever. In some cases, I might make new recordings and post them alongside the old ones. For this first one, however, I won't be doing that. I think the original is perfect as it is. And pretty hysterical too.

Back in the days before sampling and midi programming, I sometimes got my drum beats from a record called "Drum Drops." On this album, a studio drummer would play basic beats that you could practice with, write with or use on demos. For this song, utilizing the the bounced tape method, I used the Drum Drops Reggae pattern, added 2 guitars (one was playing a bass line since I didn't own a bass at the time), then had the brilliant idea of using 2 instruments I owned but rarely used: banjo and mandolin. The result falls somewhere between reggae and some sort of ethnic folk music. I think it's pretty funny, whatever it is. This one was done while I was in college, living in a cold basement apartment on Norway Street in Boston in 1981 or 1982. It's written from the point of view of a parent concerned about his or her child's decision to go into music (something I, thankfully, never experienced with my parents.) My vocal is reminiscent of Sting's early Police stuff, with some sort of accent. I can't help but notice in these old recordings how high I sang then.

Without further ado, here is "What Will the Neighbors Say?"






Sunday, August 5, 2012

Day 7 of Fearless Songwriter Week: When You Smile That Way

An old-fashioned three-chord rocker to end out the week.
I actually wrote most of the chorus in my head at 1:30 in the morning when I wasn't able to sleep last Saturday night/Sunday morning. So I thought this was going to be my first song of the week until "Your Skeevy Uncle" took over.
Listen on SoundCloud


When You Smile That Way

Isn’t it enough that you catch my eye
Every single time that you go by
But when you look my way it’s a mystery
I can’t tell how you really feel about me

chorus:
When you smile that way
When you smile that way
My knees go weak and my body shakes
When you smile that way
When you smile that way
Makes me wonder what you’re thinking
When you smile that way

When I get a glimpse of your dimpled cheek
I get so tongue-tied I can barely speak
And though my thumping heart is in smithereens
I can’t figure out what it really means

chorus

Hiding right behind those amazing eyes
Your emotions keep up their disguise
But one of these days I will figure out
What that expression is all about

chorus

Friday, August 3, 2012

Day 6 of Fearless Songwriter Week: Come On, Lucyana

A simple country-rocker with a John Hiatt Influence. Lucyana is the name of an online friend of mine in Romania. I just thought it was a cool song name.

Come On, Lucyana

Come on, Lucyana, don’t you cry
You should know by now I only want for you to fly
Sure, I’m gonna miss you
But I’m not a reason to stay
I won’t stand in your way
Oh, come on, Lucyana

Come on, Lucyana, don’t be scared
Sure thing, it’s a crazy world, but I know you’re prepared
And now is the time to
Take a step to realize your dreams
Though it’s frightening as it seems
You can do it, Lucyana

Someone is waiting for you
At the end of the line
Much as I’d like to hold on
You belong to yourself
You’re not mine

Come on, Lucyana, get away
Now’s no time to hesitate, pack up and leave today
Don’t worry about me
You know that I will be OK
Just be on your way
Oh, come on, Lucyana

Someone is waiting for you
At the end of the line
Much as I’d like to hold on
You belong to yourself
You’re not mine

Come on, Lucyana, that’s my girl
I think that you have so much to offer to this world
Please don’t deprive it
You have the power to do it all
Just go have a ball
Oh, I love ya, Lucyana

Day 5 of Fearless Songwriting Week: What It Takes To Come Alive

This one was a bit of an experiment for me. I've never based a song on someone else's work before, so this one based on a poem by my friend, Natalie Silva. You can read the original at http://thediaryofnrsilva.blogspot.com/2012/07/what-it-takes-to-come-alive.html
Anyway, here's my take on it.
What It Takes To Come Alive
based on the poem by Natalie Silva
We fell in love in such a hopeless place
You were drooling on my shoulder
The others had scattered and there I was
Still in last night’s clothes
You fed me crackers 'cause I felt so sick
You held me though your skin was colder
It wasn't my forte, could not keep up
With the life we chose
We take what we think we need
In order to survive
Until we find
What it takes to come alive
Back to the bathroom one more time again
To purge the little left inside me
I slept a little, or so I thought
Or perhaps I died
No one could help me, nothing they could do
Only I could break what tied me
Then after the crash, I reawoke to life
On the other side
We take what we think we need
In order to survive
Until we find
What it takes to come alive