My Sunday Song – “Suspended” by Matt Nathanson

For My Sunday Song #215, we are going to discuss “Suspended” by Matt Nathanson off his 2003 album ‘Beneath the Fireworks’. The album was one of the first I heard by Matt and helped me get on board to become a full-fledged fan. “Suspended” was a single off the album but failed to chart. His first charted single didn’t come until his next album, ‘Some Mad Hope’ in 2007.

The song seems to be about being with someone that that you think is pretending you are the one. You are scared. You are feeling things that you haven’t felt before. You are alive, no longer numb. You feel she might actually be the one, but you are scared that she is. You freak out a little, but you finally suspend disbelief and except her for what this is and it could be beautiful. For me, it is a song about hope in finding your true love. I find it it to be a beautiful and the way he captures the emotions in the lyrics is amazing.

Musically, it is a pop song, plain and simple. Nice beats, good grove, great vocal delivery. There is nothing special about it, no outstanding moment. It perfectly captures the tone of the lyrics and it is catchy, fun and pleasant. Sometimes, the beauty is in the simplicity.

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My Sunday Song – “Adrenaline” by Matt Nathanson

For My Sunday Song #214, we are going to discuss the song “Adrenaline” off Matt Nathanson’s album ‘Show Me Your Fangs’ from 2015. The album contained 4 singles and next to “Headphones” this might be my favorite single off the album. It charted as high as #26 on the US Adult Alternative Charts and did as well as “Headphones”.

I picture “Adrenaline” as a song about longing and desire. After a bad breakup and you run in to that person again and you want to be with them so badly you can taste it. All you remember is how great it was and wanting to capture that desire, that passion that emotion one more time and if you could grab hold, you wouldn’t let go this time. Lyrically, the song captures that feeling beautifully as well as full of some imagery of Los Angeles and of that desire that make the song a little on the sexy side.

Musically the songs starts off with an almost angelic vocals full of echo and a haunting delivery. There is a great drum beat throughout that gets you moving and bobbing the head. The highlight for me is how Matt delivers the song vocally. They way he dances with the lyrics and loses himself in the lyrics makes you feel everything that the song is trying to make you feel. A talent on both as a songwriter and a singer and when those too mesh together in the right way, you are treated with something magical and this song is exactly that.

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My Sunday Song – “Car Crash” by Matt Nathanson

My Sunday Song #213 is the song “Car Crash” by Matt Nathanson.  The song is off his 2007 album ‘Some Mad Hope’ and it was a single and got a relatively fair amount of airplay. Not as much as another song on that album which will be the final post of this 10 song series.

The song is rather dark in subject matter.  It seems to be about someone that has kept things inside for so long that they have become numb to everything around them.  They want to so desperately to feel something.  They want that “car crash” moment to wake them from the darkness and let them feel life again.  They need that dramatic cataclysmic catastrophe to be alive as they are dying on the inside.  It is rather heartbreaking that the person feels so low and depression is so rampant in today’s society which even today is easy to see how the darkness can consume.

Musically, the song fits the lyrics as the chorus explodes and the drum beats and cymbal hits sound like a crashing sound.  While on the verses, the electric guitars fill the image with a rich tone and texture that accompany the vocals to give it a sound that is uplifting despite the darkness. The sounds feel like everything is about explode and all will be right with the world.  It is a perfect blend of the dark lyrics with the light instrumentation.

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My Sunday Song – “Kinks Shirt” by Matt Nathanson

For My Sunday Song #212, we are going to discuss the song “Kinks Shirt” by Matt Nathanson. The song is off his 2013 album, ‘Last of the Great Pretenders’ and in July of that year he released this song as a video and a single.  It was one of the fun songs on the album that shows he isn’t all heartbreak and sadness and that sometimes he can be a good mood or at least sound like he is.

The song was actually inspired by an actual girl that was wearing a Kinks Shirt.  You know The Kinks, who doesn’t love The Kinks?  No one, that is who.  While recording the album, Matt and his producer and band mates would visit this diner quite frequently, I mean like every day for lunch.  There was a girl that worked there with tattoos and piercings and nothing like someone that Matt would normally be attracted to maybe, but someone he was obsessed with.  Not in a crazy stalker way, but more fantasizing way.  He was so mesmerized by her that she inspired this song.

The song is an uptempo pop song, plain and simple.  It is so catchy, fun and you can’t help but get caught up in the beat and dance around a little.  Lyrically, Matt paints a vivid picture of this girl wearing The Kinks shirt and you can picture every little detail about her and how she makes him feel.  Who hasn’t had a girl at one time you were mentally in love with, but never approached her to see what could’ve been.

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My Sunday Song – “Run” by Matt Nathanson

For My Sunday Song #211, we are tackling the first in our 10 song set of Matt Nathanson songs. I’m starting the series out with my favorite track and that is “Run”.  The song features Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush of Sugarland. The song is off his 2011 album, ‘Modern Love’ and was released as single, but only reached #53 on the Billboard Hot 100 which baffles me.

The song is not a country song even though Sugarland are on it.  No!  This is a sensual, oh so sexy, love song.  The lyrics are dirty with lines like “You come in waves” and “Then Swallow me whole” as well as “And I watch it explode”.  At the same time they are sexy with lines like “You pull me in close / And buckle my knees” and “You trace my lines / Stirring my soul”.  And then they are heartwarming with a line like “I’m amazing when you’re beside me / I am so much more”.  This song speaks to me and reminds me of my lovely bride and when I hear this song, I think of only her!  Each and every time.

Now here is the problem.  The song I think is more about an affair than love.  The lyrics talk about running back to this person.  The man says he knows that it’s wrong but he can’t help it and he always goes back to her.  Personally, I ignore that part and think of it more as a passionate love affair with my wife.  Either way, you can’t help but love the song.

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My Sunday Song – “Still of the Night” by Whitesnake

For My Sunday Song #210, we come to the last song in the 10 song set of Whitesnake songs with “Still Of the Night”.  The song was the first single off their groundbreaking, career breaking album known as ‘Whitesnake’ or ‘1987’ to some.  This took the band to new heights and MTV played the hell out of it.  The song was written by David Coverdale and John Sykes.

Lyrically, it comes as no surprise this song has a lot to do with Sex.  The “cock rock” Kings are at it again.  The song has an almost vampire element and stalker element.  He is obsessed with this woman and wants to be with her all night.  The daylight seems to hurt him as to keep his head down and hide his face from the sun.  I know it isn’t about vampires, but I like the analogy so give me that.

Musically, this was a new Snake, a hungrier Snake, a more badass Snake.  It has some blues elements of the old Whitesnake, but John Sykes took it, distorted it and turned it on its ass.  David’s swagger on belting out the opening verse is full of confidence and aggression and exactly what every teenage boy wanted to hear (and girl wanted to see). There is a musical interlude in the middle that gives an awesome guitar solo a whole different style with an almost cello/violin/string instrument orchestration to the whole thing.  Pretty freaking cool.

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The Original vs. The Cover vs. The Cover – “Me and Bobby McGee”

It is time for another the Original vs. the Cover and this time it is another trio of versions.  This time we are discussing the song “Me and Bobby McGee” which was written by Kris Kristofferson and Fred Foster, but let’s be honest, Fred only gave the song the title.  The versions we are covering are the original release by Roger Miller (1969), Kris Kristofferson’s own version (1970) and then the version by Janis Joplin (1971).  There were actually two other versions released in 1970 by Gordon Lightfoot and the Statler Brothers and then in 1971, Jerry Lee Lewis released a version.  That is 6 versions in 3 years.  Insane.  I’m going to stick with my three.

The song was started by Fred Foster, the head of the label Kris was signed, when he went to Kris with a song title called “Me and Bobbie McKee” which Kris thought it he heard McGee.  Kris didn’t think he could write the song, so he avoided Foster for months until he finally got it written.

The song is about a couple that is traveling across the southern part of the country.  They are hitchhiking, singing the blues and discovering the land and each other.  They end up breaking up and going their own ways and the singer is filled with sadness and regret about them parting as I believe he loved that Bobby McGee.  I could go in to more depth about the song and the lyrics, but then this would turn in to a My Sunday Song episode where we deep dive in to the songs.  This is about which version is the best so we will get to that part of the show.

ROGER MILLER

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My Sunday Song – “Slow An’ Easy” by Whitesnake

For My Sunday Song #209, we are going back to the first album that really broke in the states for Whitesnake and one of the songs that helped start it all, “Slow An’ Easy”.  The song was the fourth single off the album and was written by David Coverdale and Micky Moody who were the last two remaining original members of the band at the time, Micky wouldn’t last much longer as he was replaced by John Sykes before the album’s release and is guitar parts were replaced by Sykes, but that is whole other discussion.

Whitesnake was notorious at the time with critics for their “cock rock” lyrics and “Slow an’ Easy” is pretty much that to a T.  The song is about Sex!  No sugar coating it here, it is Sex!  I wish I could give you a deeper meaning to the song, but I can’t and I wouldn’t want to as the song is what it is and it is awesome!  In the 25th Anniversary edition of the album (and thanks to wikipedia), David had this to say…

“Slow & Easy was recorded at 4 in the morning in Munich after a serious night’s partying…Most of the vocals is just a live ‘jam’ lyric I made up to inspire the band as we recorded…I played around with the lyric later to try and make some sense of it…”

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My Sunday Song – “Sailing Ships” by Whitesnake

For My Sunday Song #208, we are going to discuss the Whitesnake epic classic called “Sailing Ships” off their 1989 album ‘Slip of the Tongue’. This is a deep deep cut, so deep in fact it is the last song on the album and a very popular song amongst fans even though never a single.  At over 6 minutes it is epic in length and in sound.  The song was written by David Coverdale and his writing partner at the time, Adrian Vandenberg.

The song seems to be about self discovery.  About setting a dream, no matter the size, face down your demons and go after that dream.  Don’t be afraid, throw away those fears and remember, you control your destiny.  Nothing will happen to you unless you go out and make it happen.  But no matter the storms you face, the trouble you find, push ahead and keep moving. It is rather inspiring.

This is not the typical Whitesnake ballad.  It sounds a little like Led Zeppelin as the song seems mystical and a has a whole Page vibe to it.  The song stays soft for most of the time then explodes towards the end to go out with a bang.  The tone of the music and lyrics come across as one of the most serious songs I feel they have ever done and maybe the most experimental at the same time.  The sounds Steve Vai can make with his guitar are nothing short of amazing. His solo is just as huge as the song.  David’s vocals match the intensity of the lyrics and the music.  He gives his all and it comes across as intended.  This is a group that is hitting on all cylinders and at the top of their game.

Slip_of_the_tongue

It is one of my all time favorite Whitesnake songs and that is saying a lot.  Give the song a listen and let me know what you think.  Is it as good as I think it is…yeah it is!!  Thanks for stopping by and have a Happy Sunday!!

“Sailing Ships”

Do you remember
Standing on the shore,
Head in the clouds,
Your pockets filled with dreams
Bound for glory
On the seven seas of life,
But, the ocean is deeper than it seemsThe wind was with you
When you left on the morning tide,
You set your sail for an island in the sun,
On the horizon, dark clouds up ahead,
For the storm has just begun

Take me with you,
Take me far away,
Lead me to the distant shore

Sail your ship across the water,
Spread your wings across the sky
Take the time to see
You’re the one who holds the key,
Or sailing ships will pass you by

You cry for mercy,
When you think you’ve lost your way,
You drift alone, if all your hope is gone
So find the strength and you will see
You control, your destiny,
After all is said and done

So take me with you,
Take me far away,
An’ lead me to the distant shore

Sail your ship across the water,
Spread your wings across the sky
Take the time to see
You’re the one who holds the key,
Or sailing ships will pass,
Sailing ships will pass you,
Sailing ships will pass you by…

Take me with you,
Take me far away,
We’ll ride the wind across the sky
Spread your wings and you will see
You control, your destiny,
So sailing ships don’t pass you by

So take me with you,
Take me far away,
We’ll ride the wind across the sky
Spread your wings and you will see
You control, your destiny,
So sailing ships don’t pass,
So sailing ships don’t pass you,
So sailing ships don’t pass you by…

Baby, baby, baby, baby,
You’ll find that you’re the only one
Can sail your ship across the sky

Written by David Coverdale and Adrian Vandenberg

My Sunday Song – “Walking in the Shadow of the Blues” by Whitesnake

For My Sunday Song #207, we are tackling an early career defining song for Whitesnake called “Walking in the Shadow of the Blues”.  The song was written by David Coverdale and Bernie Marsden and is off the 1979 album, ‘Lovehunter’ and although the album did better than the debut, it still didn’t light the world on fire.  But looking back on the band’s early albums, this was the one where they started finding themselves and they grew from there.

Over on Loudersound.com, an article on Whitesnake by Geoff Barton, quotes David Coverdale on the song and he stated the following:

“That song really summed up my musical approach of the time,” Coverdale says. “It was very much my feeling, my perspective and probably my life’s philosophy back then. The lyric more or less wrote itself. It was very free-flowing, very autobiographical. It was just waiting to be written. Bernie and I put the music together very quickly. It was obviously meant to be as a song. I’m very proud of that one.”

“Walking in the Shadow of the Blues” tells the story of a man who never fit in and was the black sheep of his family.  He wanted to live his own life and do what he wanted even if his parents didn’t want him to do it. He packs his bags and his guitar and heads out on his own to pursue that dream which I would say he succeeded.

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