About Jim Fusco

Jim Fusco is a singer, songwriter, guitarist, and all-around musician. Learn all about him and his creative works at http://jimfusco.com!

“Burning Love” (Elvis Presley Cover)

Originally posted 2008-12-14 22:27:27. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jim Fusco:

It’s just a hunka-hunka-burnin’-cover-song tonight on the Laptop Sessions!

Oh, yes, the Session-a-day project is winding down, but the energy still lives on in this acoustic cover song video, as I deliver one of my new favorite videos. I thought of doing this song a while ago, but never got around to it. Tonight, I needed something that would give me a “Sunday night spark”, as I’m usually pretty laid-back on Sunday nights.

This weekend was crazy. I had a work party on Friday (where I finally got to meet Dr. Perricone), came home and slept for three hours, woke up and went to see my good friend Matt Griffiths’ directing job on a one-act play at Southern Connecticut State University, went out to SBC Brewery for dinner with Becky and Danielle, came home and stayed up video editing (and hanging out with Chris and Dana) all the way till 7:30 am (!!!), waking up at 11:45 to go to our weekly “Luncho Marx” with my father at Burger King, driving down to my cousin Lou’s house in Branford to drop off my wedding video edits, coming back to do a bit of shopping, going to see “Quantum of Solace” (which was good) with Chris, leaving right from there to go to another Christmas party, came home to practice some Christmas songs and sleep, woke up to pack the car and drive an hour to another Christmas party (where I played Santa Claus and played Christmas songs with Chris and Becky), and finally came home after usual Sunday dinner at my parents’ house.

Yikes- what a sentance!

Anyway, I finally got a chance to sit down when I remembered that it was my night to post a cover song video here on the blog! And, since this blog is a true musical lifeline for me, I was all too happy to do it. This is almost my 150th music video and I’m so proud of the work we’ve done here on the best music video blog online!

Tonight’s song is an Elvis tune from the early 70s. I remember my father telling me that this song was an Elvis comeback of sorts because he returned to rock’n’roll after years of awful lounge-singing. I think The King’s story is truly one of most tragic in all of pop culture. He was the Britney Spears of his day. “Burning Love” was a huge hit, but sadly, this did not stop Elvis on his decline and he never came out with such a rockin’ single for the rest of his life.

I think the best part about this song is just how classic it sounds. He got the Jordanaires back to sing backup, the song has a great beat, and it really highlights Elvis letting loose on the vocals, especially at the end.

It’s also an incredibly easy song to play. If you can play D-G-A-Bm, you’re all set. Just husk-up that voice and get your best Elvis impression going. Actually, we recorded the performance today of Christmas song, so I may post it, depending on how good it came out. On that, I got to do a couple of Elvis Christmas songs, which have to be my all-time favorites. The only other contender is the Beach Boys Christmas album. Although, in the past few years, there have been some AMAZING Christmas offerings from the likes of Ringo Starr, Brian Wilson, Barenaked Ladies, America, and the Moody Blues. I cherish these albums as new classics every single year.

I’ll be back for an Original Wednesday that’s so good, it’s like “Your Secret Santa decided to ignore the spending limit but you didn’t and he’s not mad” good! :-) Wow, I’m way too proud of that one right now- I’m laughing out loud.

Have a great night and we’ll see you back here after two amazing new Sessions from Chris and Jeff!



“Elf’s Lament” (Barenaked Ladies Christmas cover song)

Originally posted 2007-12-22 01:05:35. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jim Fusco:

Hello everyone! Continuing with our last couple days of Christmas, we give you “Elf’s Lament”, a great song by Barenaked Ladies. We’ve always been happy with the way our live version came out, so I got the guys together to do a special acoustic version for the Laptop Sessions!  This song was perfect for the band to do because it features vocal parts for three members of the band.  Well, in this version, Mike isn’t sitting behind a large (and loud) drum set, so he got to sing the lead parts with the other three of us.  I’ve always been a fan of songs where two or three members of the band get a chance to sing.  Songs like “Two of Us” by the Beatles and “Walking On Air” by the Moody Blues (off of their amazing 1999 album, Strange Times) are great examples where you can hear all of the band members.  And, my favorite bands are ones where each member gets a chance to shine.

Which brings me to the band that we covered tonight: Barenaked Ladies.  Their Christmas album, “Barenaked for the Holidays’ is awesome.  Four of the five (at the time) members wrote and sang lead vocals on songs throughout the album.  That, to me, is the mark of a truly great band.  You get so much variety in an album and that’s probably why I’m such a big fan of the Moody Blues, the Byrds, the Beatles, and the Beach Boys (after 1967).  “Barenaked for the Holidays” features such classic songs as “Green Christmas” and Steven Page’s “Hanukkah Blessings”.

“Elf’s Lament” was originally done by Ed Robertson, Steven Page, and Michael Bublé.  I’m not a huge fan of Bublé’s voice in this song- it just has an odd sound to it.  And, saying his voice sounds odd next to Steven Page’s voice is really saying something. :-)  So, we stuck Cliff with that part to sing.  I got the Steven Page part.  This song was so much fun to sing.  It was a big hit on our Christmas concert CD and DVD set.  For that show, we performed in front of over 60 people, including the mayor of our hometown of Wallingford, CT.  It was one of the highlights of my musical career.  We just had so much fun playing this song- I wish there were more songs like this that give everyone a chance to shine.  I think everyone else in the band would’ve stayed more interested.  Knowing you have a starring role makes you pay more attention for sure!

To learn more about our music, please visit http://jimfusco.com/albums.html.  You can purchase our Christmas concert on either CD or DVD there.  It’s jam-packed with 30 (yes, 30!) original and cover songs.  I personally think it’s the best Christmas album you can buy for the money.  I hope you enjoy tonight’s Barenaked Ladies cover song and hope you’ll come back for more great Christmas songs from the Laptop Sessions acoustic cover songs music video blog!

“Everyone’s In Love With You” (Beach Boys Cover)

Originally posted 2011-07-08 00:59:52. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jim Fusco:

Welcome to another edition of the Laptop Sessions with Jim Fusco!  A quick update: the recording for my new album has been a fun process and every day I’m more and more excited to hear the finished results.  If you haven’t been following my progress, either go to my website at http://jimfusco.com or directly to my music Twitter feed @jimfuscomusic.

Tonight’s video is one from The Beach Boys- my favorite band of all time.  This song is from one of their most liked albums among fans.  Unfortunately, I don’t fall into that category.  “15 Big Ones” is an interesting album.  Sure, it’s the album where the other members finally got Brian Wilson back into the studio, but to me, it spelled the end of a once-great band.  You see, in the years leading up to “15 Big Ones”, the Beach Boys (the members other than Brian) were writing and producing some amazing music.  IN fact, “Sunflower” may be my favorite album from them.  But, as the nostalgia of the Beach Boys’ #1 greatest hits album, “Endless Summer”, grew in popularity, the band decided to get Brian back to the forefront.  Of course, Brian wasn’t really ready.  He’d been locked away in his room, listening to old music he loved from Fats Domino, Freddy Cannon, etc.  These were songs he loved as a kid and were what got him into rock’n’roll.

So, Brian wasn’t that interested in writing new songs- he ended up going into the studio and having the Boys record many of his old favorites, such as “Rock’n’Roll Music” and “Blueberry Hill”.  Those are the good ones on the album- I’m pretty sure they could’ve left off “A Casual Look” and made it “14 Big Ones” instead.

But, the pun in the title was because the Beach Boys had been a band for 15 years.  And, if I’m not mistaken, this was considered their 15th album.

It’s not a bad album, but it’s definitely dated now.  The synthesizer, brought to even more prominence on “Love You” from the next year, is hard to play for someone right now.  Playing “Palisades Park” for someone and saying, ‘This is from an album considered one of their best” doesn’t really make much of a case for potential fans.

Anyway, there are some great tracks on “15 Big Ones” though, including “It’s OK”.  Actually, I’ve already covered “Blueberry Hill”, “Just Once In My Life”, “Palisades Park” – I must like this album after all!  But, “Everyone’s In Love With You” is my favorite.  It’s definitely Mike Love at his best.  His vocals are sweet and it’s got a great melody.  Songs like this make me wish he had written more (that is, as long as they aren’t “Summer Of Love” from 1992).

I’ve always wondered if “Everyone’s In Love With You” had a bit of a racy meaning to it.  I mean, if you just literally listen to the words, you’ll see what I mean.  But, Mike has said the song is about transcendental meditation, which he was really into at the time.  It’s more of a feeling that everyone shares “love” with each other and individuality takes a back seat to a collective well-being.  At least, that’s what I’ve gained from the whole thing over the years…

I hope you enjoy this song- maybe it’ll prompt you to give “15 Big Ones” a shot someday.  It’s definitely worth a listen, I’ll say that.  I’m pretty busy for the next couple of weeks, but I won’t forget about the music blog.  I’ll be back with another great video soon, so stay-tuned!



“Heaven” (Brett Dennen Cover Version)

Originally posted 2010-02-17 02:27:46. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jim Fusco:

Hi folks!  Welcome to another Jim Fusco Tuesday!  This was one of those weeks where, after such a great long weekend, I truly dreaded the four-day week ahead.  I have two immediate video programs to edit, a whole bunch of PSA’s, an audio mastering project, and multiple projects looming around the corner… And that’s all stuff I have to do AFTER a crazy day at work!  I feel myself getting a better handle on things at work, but it’s still a struggle on a daily basis, as I’m constantly trying to dig out of a growing hole.  It’ll get better, but it’s just these weeks when everything piles up that I get a bit nervous.  Becky’s been helping (bringing me coffee and snacks, plus trying to keep me to a schedule), so it’s definitely hurt less than it should’ve.

Anyway, onto tonight’s video:

I’ve been churning out the new artists to the blog lately (and ones you might even have heard of, by the way), but tonight I might break that mold a bit.  I had never heard of Brett Dennen before, but my boss kept telling me about him after he heard Dennen’s music on Last.fm, a music service on Xbox 360.  Anyway, he burned me a copy of Brett’s songs (don’t worry, Brett- I bought the LP version of “Hope for the Hopeless” afterward and so did my brother!).  But, even though he kept asking me about it, I didn’t put the CD in because I was still hooked on the Grateful Dead!  So, about four weeks ago now, I popped Brett’s “Hope for the Hopeless” album in and completely fell in love with the music.

The man is simply a good songwriter.  His songs are not overly complicated (which I LOVE)- he uses some pretty simple chords in some songs (and some cool inversions in others, too) and the songs are short and sweet.  The songs pretty much follow the verse-bridge-chorus model and there’s one or two guitar solos spattered throughout the album.  It’s a short one with only 11 songs, but I don’t care- the quality definitely makes up for the quantity.

Dennen’s two previous releases before “Hope for the Hopeless” had the feel of Jack Johnson’s first album- sparsely produced to its detriment.  Yes, there are good songs, but I need a little more than an acoustic guitar to make me love an album.  “Hope for the Hopeless” is different.  It’s almost like he got signed to a label that gave him some more money to produce an album.  The result is amazing- I just love the production on this disc.  You won’t find a lot of harmonies here and the instruments are no-frills.  Mostly, you have an acoustic, an electric, bass, piano/organ, and drums.  That’s a perfect mix for me.  What’s great about this album, and I plan on trying with my next album, is that there really is no rhythm guitar.  The guitar only plays what it needs to.  So, the music sounds open, but not lacking.  You’ll just have to listen to get what I’m saying.

I could’ve picked any of the 11 songs from “Hope for the Hopeless” to cover.  My favorites are “Who Do You Think You Are?” and “Make You Crazy”, but I chose “Heaven” because it’s just one of those “perfect” songs.  It has such a message- kind of like “Imagine” by John Lennon.  This song, according to Dennen fans, will stand as his masterpiece.  On the recording, I challenge you not to get chills once the band comes in at the start of the second chorus.  It’s AWESOME!

So, I decided to record my version of this song just acoustically, though I’ve been playing it on the piano recently, as well.  “Heaven” is a great song to sing by yourself, as it only has one vocal in the album version anyway (the single version suffers from a female lead vocal in the second verse- I much prefer the album version and I’m glad he did it that way).

One thing about Dennen- when you hear his songs, you’ll notice his…let’s say “accent”.  I’m not really sure what it is.  It sounds Louisianan to me.  At first, I really didn’t like it.  But, if you get past the way he says certain words (like instead of “trouble”, he says, “trugh-bowl”), you’ll really like these songs.  And now, I even like the way he says those words, because I can tell he’s not doing it on purpose (just to sound different)- it’s just the way he talks/sings.

On a side note, check out one of my new favorite tunes, “Make You Crazy”, on YouTube- the music video is pretty cool.

Now, I had a feeling I’d heard of Brett Dennen before.  I mean, that voice is so unmistakable.  Becky and I both agree that we’ve heard his most “famous” song, “Ain’t No Reason” (not one of my favorites and if you heard it and know my musical tastes, you’ll understand why).  We must’ve heard it in a TV show.  Then, my brother Mike ended up knowing (and loving) “Make You Crazy”, too, from his days working at Hollister, where they played the song on a daily basis.

Okay, enough talk- time to watch the LSHD version of “Heaven” performed by me, Jim Fusco!  I’d love to hear your thoughts about the song, my performance, and Brett Dennen.  I hope you have a great week and make sure to stop back next Tuesday for another acoustic cover song.  I plan on it being a classic early 60’s tune that Becky and I heard in the car while on our way to Albany, NY for our weekend trip.  We had a blast- check my Twitter (jimfusco) for all the updates and photos from the road!  Until next week!