Once upon a time, I challenged myself to record a new original song every week for an entire year, and after finishing the first thirteen songs in about twenty weeks I failed. To make up for that failure, I’ve offered myself a much more demanding challenge: to get a passing grade, that is, 26 out of 52 songs, or 50%. Unfortunately, that’s thirteen more songs, and today is December 14th. I can’t remember if there are 30 or 31 days in December, but that’s no going to make much of a difference.
Now, I forgive me for my failure. A lot of people don’t like the word failure, but it takes a lot of it to get to success, so I’m not afraid. Let that serve as my official written warning that I’ll probably fail at phase two of the song blog.
It’s been a hard year to take on a hard project. During my most productive period, I was in school, then I immediately moved into a summer sub-let in Montreal, and into a more long-term place when that ran out, meaning every four months of 2010 has been in a different, and a different studio. Songs #1 to #8 were recorded in my family home in Harrow, ON. Songs #9 to #13 were recorded in a third-floor apartment on St. Urbain and Duluth in Montreal, where my bedroom was ridiculously small and I was forced to double the laundry room as a studio, which looked like this:
This week’s tune (that is, the 14th week, or April 4-10) is both the first one recorded at my current apartment (which I moved into September 1st) and the last one recorded at my last apartment. I originally recorded this song in July but was extremely unhappy with how it turned out. Unlike #11 – The Artist, which I scrapped immediately and re-did from scratch the same day, this one took me five months to re-do. Naturally, the song has evolved a lot since then, but it remains very much in the same vein, picking up pretty much right where I left off.
A Box of Matches
I was the artist who didn’t like Warhol,
More partial to stained-glass windows and post-it notes,
You were the cheap bottle of red wine I couldn’t get open.
Wish I had a boat, I wish I had a routine to fall back on,
I’d watch as the wind makes waves
Like cracks in a candle-lit surface.
You live your life like a hurricane,
Caught in the wake of a high pressure ridge,
Buried yourself in a basement and boarded the windows.
But I’d like to open you up like a box of matches,
And I’d like to light you up to warm this cold,
But the early morning rain falls on me.
I’ve proven myself, but only to myself,
And you’ve proven nothing to anyone,
But you’re on that boat and I’m at the dock watching it go.
You were the cheap bottle of red wine
That I couldn’t shake from my head the next day.
I was the artist who didn’t like Warhol, Dylan or Kerouac.