Category Archives: Song Stories

backgrounds to songs -( write this in the post section)

Everything we do is part of the art

There is a Billy Apple exhibition on in Auckland
My friend Clive rates him highly
Clive pointed out to me that everything we do is part of the art
The artist himself is a brand and everything he does makes up that brand
The thing I really like about Billy is this …that the artist himself IS the art
So everything he does is relevant
There is no real point in trying to hide behind a thin veneer of bling
Mr Apple takes it to extremes

But I suggest a moderate version of his stye
Just be honest and not afraid to expose the sensitive issues
Fact is an artist is not a superhero
He is just creating art and in doing so he IS the art
His weakness can be turned into strengths
Like in the Tesla car.
The huge extra weight of the battery gives the car incomparable traction and stability
You can’t roll it in a standard roll test
There is the line “My strength is made perfect in weakness”
Love that line
Where does it come from?

Got some great feedback from Potato Sack Perry
He advises me to write regular blogs and to talk about ME
I would love to do that
Here goes!

For years I have had a problem with sitting down and writing songs.
I know I can do it but I prefer to work on my feet as it were and play constantly to discover all kinds of riffs and ideas
The music develops this way but what about the lyrics?
Not so good for developing lyrics
I really need to apply the seat of my pants to the seat of the chair
That’s what I am doing right now and its not too painful

I wanna write a song about MS anyone out there with information on this disease?
Have you heard of BID FOR A BETTER LIFE?
I have been asked to submit a song for this cause

Thanks for getting in touch Patrick
Could I ever forget? Ha ha
You also have been a big inspiration to me
I loved your insights and your stories
Especially the one about the Top Guns party
Can we tell it to the people? Its a great story.

You see? It works
I asked for feedback from my last blog and I got it
I now ask for even more so that we can really start to roll this blog
Tell me if there is anything I can do for you
People used to say that ALL the time
You don’t hear that so often these days

I wanna post up the lyrics of my songs and the chords
Just give the music away
Why not?
Elon Musk gives everything away and he’s a billionaire as a result
The more you give the more you get to give more

Tallk soon

This is the age of the civilised robot

I wrote a song called “Shadow Of The Factory”
At that time I was working at a slaughterhouse
Hosing down beef carcasses and listening to Hamlet on my sony walkman…

Here is that song. BTW – my Best of Album is now on bandcamp

The headphone speakers were installed inside ear muffs
I was pleased with my innovation
My dayjob was merely theatre
The Royal Shakespeare Company performed Hamlet with me in my little world of slaughter

All day long I would ride up and down on my pneumatic platform high pressure hosing down the bodies swaying on their hooks
I had the cleanest job on the line until………

One day I was shown another job ..this time in the offal department separating entrails.
The guy who showed me this job was-I thought- just being friendly and letting me see another side of the work being done in our house of horrors

I told him I was very happy I didn’t have to work in his department and thanks for showing me another side of the works.

He told me to wait a minute while he had a chat to his boss When he returned he announced cheerfully “Guess what your new job is?”

In my spare time I used to get wasted in The Tai Pei owned by Eddy Chin. He didn’t book me too often cause I wasn’t a BAND. One act he booked called COOL BANANAS didn’t turn up. His response was “They not Cool Banana..they rotten banana”

I felt like a rotten banana myself in those days. I was writing my best stuff but the venues paid nothing for original acts (they still don’t) Furthermore no one knew what I was on about

I wrote the Shadow Of The Factory to unburden myself of the sense of meaninglessness I was feeling in my work. I invented a factory and a disgruntled worker and put them in a song

“I worked for years and your factory
You say there’s no more work for me
For what its worth I’d work for free
For what its worth in your plastic money
You phase me out
You phase me out
I live in fear
Cold as ice
Just as clear
That you only be so strong
While the power is on
When the big fuse blows
Gonna have to go
Digital watch don’t tick or tock
This is the age of the civilised robot
Profit for the big think man
Do you fit that big think plan?”

A disgruntled factory employee is laid off by the factory boss who later re-employs him as a golf caddy
First opportunity the factory gets to automate what he’s doing
And he’s gone
All done with “plastic money” by masters of high finance

The last verse has our disgruntled working class hero playing his part in the leisure industry
His boss makes him an offer he can’t refuse
He reflects thus
“Pretty soon you gonna say
I can work as you play
Hey Louie be my caddie today
36 holes and I plainly see
36 holes in the shadow
Of the factory”

So he gets a new job working on the golfcourse next to the factory he used to work in
Same boss lower pay the shadow of the old world cast across the new

I am told that the NSA is known as the shadow factory
I had no way of knowing this then of course
I will have to sue the NSA for stealing my phrase
Ha ha

“This is the age of the civilised robot”

We can survive but do we have to dump heart and soul to do it?

“Not worth to do that” as Eddy Chin would say. What do you think?

Blaise Pascal Observes

Blaise Pascal observes the absurdity of the human condition when it is out of sync with the divine or “absolute”. He observes the irony of life and the futility of claiming to have great knowledge..

He sums it up here “Instead of complaining that God has kept himself hidden, you will give him thanks that he has made himself so visible and you will give him further thanks that he has not revealed himself to the wise people full of pride, unworthy of knowing so holy a God”. . .

To seek greatness and the esteem of humans was an absurd concept for Pascal. Seeking greatness was to him an act of great folly Pascal turns the world of men upside down.

One key Pascal insight hinges on the recognition of our complete helplessness outside of God.”What astonishes us most is to observe that everyone is not astonished at his own weakness” We are like a reed. Weak and yielding but by some miracle able to think.

If we have any claim to greatness it comes from our ability to think.

“Through space the universe grasps and engulfs me like a pinpoint; through thought I can grasp it”. VOILA!

Read more about the “Pascals Song”