Upon occasion, I create what I call a Three Hour Song. How it works: I invite my friends on Facebook to comment with words, phrases, keys, tempos, anything (I rarely try and implement a theme) and from that I write, record, mix and upload a song from scratch in, you guessed it, three hours. None of these exercises come with any warning; generally, it’s when I have nothing to do in an evening – of have things to do I’d rather avoid – and I have a decent stock of alcohol at hand.
In June 2014 came “Boats and Hos.” With the exception of another experimental song called “Alan Rickman”, “Boats and Hos” has received the most consistent plays over time, amounting to an impressive – or paltry, depending on your perspective – 250 plays. For whatever reason, my friends kept on suggesting nautical-sounding phrases, including, of course, the title. While I kept my screen on the comments, I played piano until a suitable sounding melody emerged. A few strings, bass, percussion, drums and harmony vocals later, a song appeared.
I should admit that I am never, ever in a good mood when I do these songs. I am directionless (or rudderless, if you will) or cannot cultivate any imagination or inspiration. Bypassing my intellect altogether, these songs come from a wholly other place. It is not muse-driven. It just needs to be done, which, for some reason, works quite well.