My life changed a bit by this time. You can tell. I had made a couple great friends and they poured their hearts into this cd with me. Rusty Budde and Mark Dreyer. I wrote several songs for this cd and picked up a couple. This is recorded in the Marks studio in Hendersonville TN. Some of the players on here have played on songs you’ve heard on the radio your whole life. Buy the CD check out the player credits.
This song started the way same way FloraBama Time did. I was still asking myself the question, what’s so special about this joint?
I’d wound up making a living in these “atmospheres” around south Alabama. The bars and restaurants where “the locals drink.” Each one beloved by its clientele. And I didn’t feel I’d ever put my finger on why some people stayed in the same bar for a decade when there were other bars five miles down the road. With better food or a prettier bartender or better parking and no cops at 1 AM.
If you’ve heard this song you know the answer. It’s the people. It’s always the people. Everything is people.
It’s hard to talk about this song without quoting it but that would be redundant.
As with FloraBama Time I never could finish this song alone. Rusty Budde and I whacked this out one afternoon in July of 2016 and by the end of the month he’d gotten us into a studio in Hendersonville, TN and we came up with what you hear today.
I was once again going to do a cd at home like I’d been doing, playing everything myself, engineering and producing the whole thing. But this song Atmosphere changed the course of the third cd. Mark Dreyer did such an amazing job working this song up I decided to do the whole project with him. Great decision on my part. Im slapping myself on the back here. As with everything in life, you get what you pay for. I think this cd was worth the money I paid for it. And it was cheap at that. Rusty produced for free, he has a heart of gold. And you can’t put a price on Mark Dreyer. If you’ve ever wondered what a Nashville Producer actually does let me tell you.
They sit in the studio with you day in, day out and make you work your ass off. Rusty spent two weeks of 2016 helping me make this Atmosphere record awesome. And it worked. It’s getting played on radio stations around the country and the world. Are we making any money off that? Well, no, but still….
It’s out there in the atmosphere.
This song started with drastically different lyrics. It was about a little guy who lusted after the bar queen. He just couldn’t get her to notice him for anything. It’s a little biographical in that he really was there and so was she and so was I.
It was summer of 2012, brutally hot. South Alabama moved from one air conditioned oasis to another, and in south Alabama one of the most popular air condition holes is that upstairs room at the Bama. There I was. And this song happened one afternoon.
I have to assume if you read these stories you already know the songs and I don’t need to spell it out.
The way it started is different than now. I saw myself as the guy on stage she was watching while this guy wished she was watching him. She really wasn’t paying any attention to me whatsoever. But I needed a crutch point to start a song.
This song should’ve been on Looking For You, but somehow I never was happy with the production I had. And now I’m glad I wasn’t, because it gave me a chance to rewrite it with Rusty. Simpler, tighter. It’s now a first person POV. Easy Peesy.
Never Be the Same
If you’ve been in love this song is for you. Especially if you’re still in love.
My idea was to put George Strait and Frank Sinatra in a song. Maybe a little Louis Armstrong.
Songs get started in my head for lots of reasons and with lots of different ingredients in the first blast of thought. This song came from my listening to a Sinatra greatest hits cd on the way somewhere. The first track is, The Last Dance. You know it. You can hear it in your head now. It’s the last dance, they’re playing the last dance, da doop dee doop doo doo, they’re dimming the lights down, they’re hoping we’ll go…. Na na na naaaaa…..
I particularly love this Sinatra tune because it’s the rhythm of two people holding on tight after a night of holding on tight. It’s a slow belly-rubber. And I love belly-rubbers. These folks have been out there on the dance floor for hours and they don’t want to leave. The bands tired and trying to quit but these two are still holding on tight.
I knew I was hoping, wishing, looking, praying for the same kind of love someday. So I started this song with a slow hip swaying groove. And started writing down lines that I wanted to be true. I started writing down what I wanted out of love. How I knew I would feel if this song came true.
I’m thrilled with how this recording came out. I shudder at the thought of how this would’ve sounded if I’d wound up having to play it all myself.
I think back to recording Sit Here In It and remember the long days of playing the piano to get all that and it’s nowhere near the piano for Never Be The Same. Ronnie Godfrey lived down the street form the studio and Mark called him and said “Hey what are you doing for the next hour”. Ronnies blind so Mark ran over and got him and when he came in and sat down and listened to the groove he started playing before the intros was over. Most of what’s on the cd is the first pass. We punched a few holes where Ronnie thought the second pass was better. The break in the middle was a kazoo in my original demo. I had Louis Armstrong nailed on the kazoo!
This is the deep end of Nashville recording. Old school classic players. This is where the whales play. Major sevenths and augmented fourths. Magic!
I’m always thrilled when people come up and tell me this is one of their favorite songs. If it’s your favorite song please tell me.