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Happy Hour. - Basically this song is sort of like the theme from "Cheers". Come on down to happy hour.
leave your troubles behind for a while.
Shayla - The full title is "Shayla, wont you bring me a beer". This was written after listening to
one of the regulars attempt to get the bartender's attention by repeating over and over in an ever louder voice
"Hey Shayla, can you bring me a beer". Its become quite useful while performing. If I find myself with no frosty beverage,
I start singing this ditty and she brings it right out. One of the verses is specifically for certain patrons (you know who you are).
Bottle Rocket. - This is based on a Jeff Foxworthy joke from the blue collar comedy tour
(Women are like diesel engines & men are like bottle rockets). Also, in my observations of several bar room vultures,
I found a certain morally casual attitude and focus of attention.
Ugly Girl - While listening to a band called "Shotgun Wedding" play, not knowing the song
and making up my own lyrics as they played, I came up with "She was an ugly girl but she's a beautiful woman now.
This is a comparison song. Now vs then. Just so you know - I had no particular person in mind when I wrote this.
Edge of Summer. - There's a day in late August where you can feel the weather turn from summer
and start heading for fall. But, there are still a few more barbecue's and softball games before the leaves fall.
This is an ode to that "last chance" for summer fun.
Smoking Section. - The folks who are die hard smokers will endure the most amazingly harsh conditions
for a fix. Exposure to the elements for a little nicotine. Every now and then the horse coral that serves as the smoking section
becomes livable - for a while.
Tequila in the jar. - This is a traditional Irish song called "Whiskey in the jar".
I wrote parody lyrics for Cinco de Mayo one year and now I have forgotten the original.
Too Much Information. - This is an audience participation song. Cover your ears and sing along.
I wrote this after listening to someone talk about his ex, giving details no one wanted to hear.
Simultaneously three of us clapped our hands on our ears and started saying "LA LA LA LA LA LA LA".
This evolved into a truly effective response to drunken hecklers.
Try Again. - This is a little more philosophical look at bar romance than 'Bottle Rocket'.
If at first you don't succeed...
Well Drink. - I misheard someone who actually said "where there's a will there's a way".
This is my stab at politics and such. Rodney King said "can't we all just get along". My response - Where there's a well drink there's a way.
Alcohol - Even though there can be loads of fun at drinking establishments,
there can also be horrible consequences if you don't remember moderation.
I know a couple of folks who have gotten to this tragic point.
Winter - This is sort of an extension of the song "Alcohol".
Sometimes it's a single moment you can hold onto that can turn your life around.
Dance. - I started playing this chord progression one day and my feet started tapping along.
This is actually a love song filled with innuendo. I remember 'dancing' with my wife in several different rooms of the house.
However you take it - its a happy little song.
A little bit slow - I have been accused of being overly generous with certain people in my life.
I have also been accused of having a rock for a head is some cases. When I am confronted with the statement
“I wouldn’t have been that nice”, my natural response is “I guess I’m just a little bit slow”.
To be truthful – I prefer being slow that way.
Quiet Desperation - I was watching the local news one day and instead of sitting behind a desk
they had the newscasters standing next to a screen. Dan Lewis, who has been on the news in Seattle for years and years,
was wearing a very blue suit. His shoes were an almost orange shade of brown (with black sox) and the clash of colors made me think
about what would happen if he all of a sudden had to go out on job interviews and that was all he had to wear.
There are several people I used to work with who found themselves in the position of having to look for work after being in the same job
for 30 years. This led me to the quote “most men lead lives of quiet desperation” and I built on it from there.
Ever After - Roughly based on the old saying “if you love something set it free,
if it comes back its yours, if it doesn’t it was never yours to begin with”. This is more of a “if you love someone set them free” song.
I used my own and other peoples experiences to write this one.
Walking Home - I have a habit of walking to the bar just to be safe.
I wrote this one night after walking home and jotting down notes about all the things I saw or thought.
After a night of fun or chaos you really do go home alone. With your thoughts at least.
Autumn Skies - Just one more sappy love song from a sappy guy.
Girlfriends - I name all of my guitars. Most are female names.
When I wrote this song, Evelyn was in the kitchen, Ethel was in the bedroom, Christine was in the car &
I was working on the song with Florence. Elizabeth was also in the living room with me, just in case.
Layoff blues - My day job for the last decade or so was outsourced in June of 2010.
Quite a few people who had been in the same job for 30 years suddenly had to make instant retirement plans or
apply for their current job at less pay and poorer benefits. I wrote this song 8 hours before they told us.
After getting the news I promptly wrote "Winning the lotto blues" but so far that has not been quite as prophetic as this tune.
Come Away - I think I wanted to write this song in high school, but I lacked the ability to write or play an instrument.
I don't date. I don't really know how. I was never good at it when I was young. I didn't have to think about it while married.
It always looked easy on TV. I just never knew what to say without sounding completely stupid to myself.
This song is actually the musical equivalent to asking a woman for a date. It’s designed so that virtually any name can be used.
I did not realize any of this until after the song was done.
Harley Girl - One of the women, who used to frequent the same local drinking establishment as I do,
owned a Harley Davidson motorcycle. She had been trying for years to find a guy that matches what she holds as perfect –
a biker dude with a heart of gold to ride off into the sunset with. There have been those that looked the part without
the heart of gold or the bike (or a steady job in some cases). I wrote this from the point of view of that guy she’s looking for.
It definitely ain’t me.
Fixated - I have been the subject of fixation in the past.
I have known some otherwise sane individuals who will rush into denial when certain subjects come up.
This is the story of a guy who hit the end of his rope and came to an unavoidable decision.
Another Christmas here - When I wrote this my closest relative was over 700 miles away.
The bulk of my family was 1500 miles away. I worked a job that knows no holiday and with everyone so far away I usually work on
Thanksgiving and Christmas days. One year I had Thanksgiving day off and when someone asked what I was doing for the holiday
I said it’s just me, the dog, and the television. That was a little depressing after I thought about it.
This song was written as a way to step outside that depression and drop kick it into the trash where it belongs.
Simple life - The bartender at my local drinking establishment was chatting with a customer one night
when she caught him staring at her cleavage. His response was to say he was looking at her necklace.
To which she replied “are you a connoisseur of costume jewelry?”. It was such a good line that I started adding to it immediately.
After completing the first two verses I started to think – what if this wasn’t funny.
What if there were a guy sitting in a bar talking wanting to find a wife but having no idea how to go about it.
Just sitting there and spilling out the silly stuff he loves and hoping the girl who happens to be listening might be the one.
It still gives me shivers.
A bipolar exit interview - Back in January of 2010 they announced that 3 of my co-workers would be laid off.
This caused morale to hit the floor. Someone asked if I could write a “happy” layoff song to lighten the mood.
I wrote the verses with this in mind – but my inherent sarcastic nature took over when I wrote the chorus.
This song was an underground hit after the rest of the outsourcing was announced.
Geezer - A co worker was describing an old friend of her husband one night.
The more she talked the more I laughed. Most of the details are factual except for -
I don’t think there’s an actual Absentia Texas on the map.
and the name was changed to keep the guy from hunting me down & clubbing me with a bottle of Jack Daniels.
Muse Blues. - I have no idea where this came from (it must have been my muse - she knows who she is).
I started playing a blues riff one morning and it just flowed out.
So far the folks I've played it for like the line about Kangaroos and the line that states "so just hit me where it wont bruise".
it's amazing how many rhymes there are for muse...
6:17 . - That's PM by the way. Back in 1979 I started working for the Valley National Bank in Phoenix AZ.
I rode to work and back on the same bus my father rode. Every night we got home at 6:03. I washed up for dinner and sat down in
my chair to call my girlfriend. The routine was timed so that her phone would ring at 6:17. But that only explains the title.
The actual song is about our relationship then, the abrupt ending and the continuation some 30 years later. The words speak for themselves.
Indiana. - Before moving to Arizona from Seattle, I almost moved to Indiana from Seattle.
This song is about that move. I did a version of this and changed the word Indiana to Arizona,
but decided to leave it this way because that was what I was thinking of when I wrote it.
One more chance. - A love song I can believe in. Every morning we have one more chance to love -
I intend to use all my chances as wisely as possible.
Watch for signs of life - I wrote another version of this song a couple of years ago.
I didn't like the lyrics too much so I rewrote the entire song except for the title and the tag line.
This was written for a friend who needed to make a big change in her life but was worried about the outcome.
Spend some time. - I came to Arizona in October of 2010 to spend some time with my family.
I wrote this waiting to get on the plane.
And then... - After my last day of employment with a large airplane manufacturer who shall remain nameless,
I stopped in at the Chevron station near my home to buy a couple of beers to celebrate.
In the trash can outside the door was a white dress shirt and a tie that someone had thrown away earlier.
While driving home I thought about that and wrote this before opening the celebratory beers.
It denotes an ending and also a beginning in my life.
This Moment. - Wayne Dyer. Look him up. Buy his books. This is sort of a bit of his philosophy.
It's always now and you are always here - so live here, now - not tomorrow, yesterday or somewhere you aren't.
Shoot for the moon - One Friday evening in August of 2010 I was sitting in Katie J's bar & grill,
talking to my friend Mike and his friend Brian about songwriting. Mike had a title he liked and told me the name "Shoot for the moon".
I said POCO had released a song by that name many years ago. But I went ahead and wrote it anyway.
It's my uplifting - go ahead and do it - song.
Serenity. - Shayla, from the song by the same name, has the serenity prayer tattooed on her back.
This song is built around the experiences of her and several other people in my life and is based on the prayer of the same name:
"God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change. The courage to change the things I can, and
the wisdom to know the difference between them."
Wont give up. - It's true, I wont give up on love. Or on ice cream. A sad but hopeful song.
All by ourselves. - OpenmicAZ.com had a challenge. They provide a title and local songwriters
write a song with that title and play it for the others at their showcase. I took the challenge but I was not in AZ for the showcase.
Far Side - Another philosophy song. Last October I flew into Phoenix during a thunder storm
and could see the lightning on the other side of town. it sort of grew out of that vision.
Girl up on the pool table. - Actually it was 2 girls up on the pool table.
They were watching my friend Mike perform at Katie J's one night and were sitting on the pool table (against the rules).
Mike kept trying to get them to request a song and not knowing their names just called them "hey girl on the pool table".
Their names are Karen & Chris. The song is NOT true to life, so their husbands can relax, please.
I will not sing. - the complete title is: "I will not sing for you". Which means if you listen to it
or hear me play it sometime, then it's not about you.
Rebuttal - One Thursday night in Sept of 2010, My friend Mike Helland was performing at Katie J's.
As usual he was asking for requests. An English fellow requested... make that demanded, a song by Queen.
Mike did a 'country' version of "fat bottom girls" which sent this guy into a fit.
When asked how he liked the song he stated "Freddie Mercury is wrapped in copper wire, spinning in his grave and powering the whole of London".
Mike looked at me and said "sounds like a song". Now it is
Without you - The real title is "I don't wanna go to heaven without you".
It's a blues song about being so in love with some one you'd rather spend each day in fire and brimstone than go to heaven without them.
For the record that would be a cop out.
Fresh air - The actual title is the name of an air freshener - but I didn't feel like asking permission
to use their logo. The lyrics are self explanatory.
Yard Sale. - I had a yard sale August of 2010 in conjunction with some friends.
This is literally a list of things we were selling. I wrote the song while bored to death sitting on my front porch
waiting for anyone to come by.
Public Service Announcement. - Brought to you by the AD counsel and this station.
Every band I've seen play in nightclubs or bars always says at the end "remember to tip your bartender well".
So I wrote it into a song that I play at least twice during the night to get the folks singing along and doing just that.
Copyright ©2005-2011 Doug Barnett. All rights reserved.
Updated 08/09/11 By Doug Barnett