July 8th, 2011
Thing a Week 41: Seahorse
I was thinking about how with seahorses, the males are the ones who carry the fertilized eggs until they hatch. And then of course I started thinking of a sad seahorse, whose female had left him alone to care for the kids – AGAIN. I’m pretty sure this is not actually the way things really are for seahorses. But if it was, you know, this song would make sense.
I can’t believe we’re on Thing a Week V.
PRESENT DAY JOCO SAYS: Goink! Thing a Week V? Apparently I still hadn’t done the math to figure out the factors of 52. Ten is not a factor of 52, that’s sort of obvious. I guess I was just thinking that albums were ten songs long? Which they’re not. Who knows!
I keep reviewing the other blog posts chronologically close to the original Thing a Week one, and around here is where I can recognize the beginnings of me becoming too busy to blog properly. I was falling behind on everything, and it has stayed that way ever since. One of the first things to go was my ability to keep on top of things that people were sending me - stuff they made, stuff they noticed that was cool or stuff they found that was about me. Early on when I wasn’t getting much of these, I had the time to lavish attention on them in a way that they deserved. I still find it remarkable that anybody cares, and I still treasure every little drawing, video, story, half-pony half-monkey monster that comes across my radar. Unfortunately if I spent as much time studying and celebrating them as I wanted to, I would: 1) have no time to make music, and 2) be absorbed into my own ego so completely that the heat from my self-love would explode our solar system. Lately I’ve been so busy falling behind on things that I don’t even have the mind space for Twitter - TWITTER! Who doesn’t have time for Twitter?
But hey, listen to the mix on this song would you? Not too shabby. Drum loop that’s not too egregiously out of place, those lush vocals in the chorus (the patented JoCo doubled, hard-panned SPREAD (not actually patented, or mine)). What’s nice about it is that it hangs together as a whole really well - usually I can hear all the little individual parts sticking out, but this sounds pleasantly cohesive to me. Bassline in the verses: aces. Edie Brickell tremolo guitar in the left channel: you’re welcome. And my favorite, the little rush at the end of the chorus, which I think is a guitar strum run backwards.
The song is pretty. A fine melody, maybe not a lot of meat in the lyrics. I was consciously trying to write simply, to write Hemingway lyrics. I remember thinking it would be a challenge to use all one-syllable words. Of course by making this about a Seahorse, I failed out of the gate, but it was a nice guiding principle. And it’s sweet, if a little fluffy and inconsequential.
The bridge shares some DNA with the B-section of the verses from “I Crush Everything.” I can’t remember the precise details anymore, but I think I remember that line about the waves above going up and down trying to sneak its way into “Crush.” Or maybe it was the other way around? Either way, two songs about sad sea creatures:they’re bound to sound like siblings.