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 Posted: Sat Jan 5th, 2019 02:17 am
1st Post

Joined: Wed Jul 18th, 2012
Location: Portland, Oregon USA
Posts: 163
Favorite Artist: CSNY, Dylan, Paul Simon, Yes, Tull, the Who, Floyd, Patti, ...
I am a: Songwriter/Musician
I have stated in the past that I usually memorize my lyrics long before they are committed to paper, what follows is just the opposite of that. I actually wrote this on my phone with my thumbs, one verse at a time in the order that you see them below. I started with the single image (the first 3 lines) and let it develop from there. Once I settled on the structure and rhyme scheme, it got a little easier to fill in the blanks, kind of like doing a crossword puzzle. I think the verses are pretty much interchangeable, but I like the first for the opener.
The chorus is something that I hit on while walking to the store, and I think it somehow fits and clashes with the verses at the same time. The chorus started life as "you'll be gone..." but I changed it to "we'll be gone..." about five minutes ago.
Comments are welcome but not compulsory,
Just sharing the process for now.

Your old red flannel's hanging
from a nail out in the shed
As worn as any battle flag I've seen
The Nova hasn't started since
the day you pulled the heads
Looks nothing like them in the magazines

A pile of scratch-its nesting on
the yellow dinette set
Conceals the cable bill that's overdue
You pause to ponder why you haven't
Hit the big one yet
Hope's fading like an old jailhouse tattoo

We'll be gone for an awful long time when we go
Thought you ought to know
I thought you ought to know
We'll be gone for an awful long time when we go
I hope it's a long time before we go

There's a cup of cold black coffee
leaving yet another stain
On the furniture you borrowed from your ma
You're always in the attic
And you never did explain
Why you can't go back to Arkansas

Two thirds of your ex-wives are getting
very much annoyed
You ain't been keeping up the child support
Your PO says he's doubtful that
You're gainfully employed
And wants to know what he should tell the court


Gregg Barrett 2019

Last edited on Sat Jan 5th, 2019 02:20 am by LongShadows

Just call me Gregg
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 Posted: Sat Jan 5th, 2019 08:17 pm
2nd Post

Joined: Tue Jan 10th, 2017
Posts: 1213
Favorite Artist: 
I am a: Songwriter
A great storyline.

I haven't failed, I've found 10,000 ways that don't work. Thomas Edison (1847-1931)
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 Posted: Sat Jan 5th, 2019 09:30 pm
3rd Post
TSF Administrator

Joined: Thu May 17th, 2007
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 4808
Favorite Artist: James Taylor, Cat Stevens, Joni Mitchell
I am a: Songwriter/Musician
Interesting to hear how songs develop. People are different and individual songs can be different too!

V1 is a strong visual, but you could start with v3 too if you wanted and swap those. Either would work.

"I think it (the chorus) somehow fits and clashes with the verses at the same time"
it's a strong contrast, so I see the clash. A bit like a musical dissonance. Interesting!

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 Posted: Sat Jan 5th, 2019 11:04 pm
4th Post

Joined: Tue Nov 27th, 2018
Location: Poughkeepsie, New York USA
Posts: 232
Favorite Artist: Queen, Tom Petty, Metallica, Kansas, Guns N' Roses
I am a: Songwriter
You make it very easy to picture the scene(s). It evokes a sorrowful feel when I read it - definitely emotional.

I like all the verses except the 4th. It fits, but it out of sorts somehow.

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