“Wednesday Morning” (America Cover)

By Jim Fusco:

Welcome to your Thursday night edition of the Laptop Sessions with me, Jim Fusco!

To quote Jeff, “The only thing the same about the site is the background’s still gray.”  That describes the work I’ve been doing over the past couple of days.  You’ll notice the new navigation on the top of the homepage, the smaller text in the upper left hand corner, and the left sidebar rearranged.  The best part of all this is the release of the The Laptop Sessions free mp3 download series.  We tried doing it once before, but it was a LOT of work.  Okay, so it’s not as fancy now, but you still get 20 great cover songs in mp3 format as a completely and absolutely FREE download!  You have nothing to lose and a whole lot of music to gain.  I sound like an Oreck XL commercial…

We have 7, yes 7, Volumes released already.  We’re going to do them by Sessions member.  Meaning that a whole volume will be dedicated to 20 of my cover songs in order and the same with Chris, Jeff, and Mike.  Original Wednesday Volumes will be released, as well, and we’ll also come out with a holiday songs version at the end of the year- my favorite kind of music!

So, we already have 140 free mp3s for you to download so you can bring the Laptop Sessions cover songs with you wherever you will go (to quote the Calling)!

Also, you might have noticed that you can leave comments MUCH easier now- you don’t need to register or login to leave a comment for us!  We’d LOVE to read your comments and reply- we’re trying to build a community of Laptop Sessions lovers here that come back on a daily basis to see what’s new.  We hope you’ll be part of that community!

Okay, on to tonight’s video:

“Wednesday Morning” is a great tune written by Gerry Beckley off of the America album, “Human Nature”.  This is one of my favorite albums from them (probably second to “Homecoming”, which is on my list of best albums of all time).  Their new album, “Here and Now”, is great, too, as is their Christmas LP, “Holiday Harmony”.  Noticing all of these albums start with the letter “H”?  Well, about 90% of their albums do!

I love the songwriting of Gerry Beckley.  I’ve gotten to meet him on MULTIPLE occasions after shows.  He even threw me his guitar pick once during a show!  It’s funny that I actually got into America after listening to “Becky, Lamm, and Wilson” for Carl Wilson’s songs.  I knew about Chicago (with Lamm), but didn’t know much about Beckley.  I bought their “Best of” CD and never looked back.  I have every album I could find from them on CD and many on records, too.

“Human Nature” has a TON of classic songs on it, but the catchiest to me was always “Wednesday Morning”.  This album came out shortly after Carl Wilson’s death, and after hearing the “Beckley, Lamm, and Wilson” stuff, I was hurting for new, non-Christmas, material for a long, long time, especially because “Human Nature” was so good.

I hope you enjoy tonight’s Session- my first in the great outdoors!  The next five are also outside, so I hope you get used to it!  It’s been beautiful weather here lately, and at this point, I’ll take ANY excuse to get away from Chris playing off-key renditions (on purpose to annoy me) of “Who Needs Sleep” and “The Hurricane” all night…



“Santa’s Beard” by Jim Fusco – FREE mp3 Download! – Day 13 of 14

By Jim Fusco:

Let’s pretend for a moment that it’s still Friday night, shall we? 🙂

Day 13 is here and I’ve got my last Christmas cover song for you!  It’s a tune I’ve been singing to my 4-month old son since he was born.  For some reason, I got it in my head that he would like it, so I started singing it to him.  Now, it seems like he recognizes it and likes to hear it.  So, I may sing it year-round!

“Santa’s Beard” by the Beach Boys is one of those songs you’ve probably heard in passing here and there over the years.  It’s a cute tune and I really like the vocals, as always.  This ended up being one of the hardest songs to record because of the awesome walking bass line in it.  What a project!  It really took me a long time to get that down, but now that I did, it’s pretty spot-on to the original, if I do say so myself.

Enjoy “Santa’s Beard” and remember to download all of the rest of the Christmas songs.  I’ll be back shortly with the last song in Jim Fusco’s 14 Days of Rock’n’Roll Christmas 2015!

“Santa Bring My Baby Back (To Me)” by Jim Fusco – FREE mp3 Download! – Day 11 of 14

By Jim Fusco:

Really getting down to the wire now, as I bring you Day 11 of 14 here at Jim Fusco’s 14 Days of Rock’n’Roll Christmas!  I hope you’ve been liking all of this free music so far.  Let’s keep it rolling tonight with a great little tune that Elvis Presley sang all the way back in 1957.  “Santa Bring My Baby Back (To Me)” is one of my favorites because of the good beat and that awesome bass line.  That line took me a LONG time to master and my fingers were so sore I couldn’t play the bass again for a couple of days!  But now I think I can play it in my sleep.

The backing vocals were a little trickier than I thought they’d be.  There’s a couple of parts that I didn’t realize were in there, but you listen to a song a lot differently when you’re trying to recreate it.  I was able to use some of my nice guitars and amps for these songs to give the proper sound and I think they really sound good.

So, add this song to your growing collection and come back for the final three days starting tomorrow!

“The Man With All The Toys” by Jim Fusco – FREE mp3 Download! – Day 8 of 14

By Jim Fusco:

Hello everyone!  We begin week number two of free Christmas songs with another favorite of mine: “The Man With All The Toys” by the Beach Boys.  It sounds like a simple song on the surface, but there are some cool changes that Brian Wilson created for the chords.  The vocals, especially the cool “low harmonies” on the bridges, are difficult and really cool.

I tried to stay as close as possible to the original with the instruments, too.  I used my Fender Stratocaster on the neck pickup, just like Carl and Al did on the original recording.  For the lead guitar part, I actually had to re-record it because I didn’t originally put the echo effect on it, like the original had.  I also ended up recording two bass lines with slightly different sounds.  If you listen on headphones, you can hear one in each ear.  I never knew that there were two bass lines recorded for this song, but that’s how they got that cool “oomph” to the recording.  As always, the more I find out about the Beach Boys, the more I love them!

I hope this track adds to your enjoyment of the holidays (paraphrased from Christmas Vacation) and that you’ve taken the time to download the other seven tracks so far.  Stay tuned, because tomorrow I bring you Day 9!