Welcome back for an all-new recording on LaptopSessions.com! If you’ve been here before, then you probably know that today is “Original Wednesday,” and it’s my pleasure to bring you one of my favorite songs I’ve ever written, titled “Please Stay.”
I wrote this song a while back as a contribution for Masters of the Universe. My bandmate, Jim Fusco, helped me refine the chord structure and added in an incredible duo of guitar solos — that’s right, two distinct solos in one song! (If MoU ever releases Homestead’s Revenge, the fully-produced version will be on it.)
Of course, this is an acoustic performance, and you’ll hear the rarely-used third verse that replaces the second solo. I’ve never been entirely happy with the third verse, so I’ve amended it a bit for this recording. Without further ado, “Please Stay”!
P.S. Don’t forget to check back tomorrow for an all-new Laptop Session by Jeff!
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!
Hello and welcome to another edition of the Laptop Sessions acoustic cover songs music video blog! We’re back again with a cover song video from the Traveling Wilburys- their most famous song, “Handle With Care”. When I was four years old, this song came out and it’s one of my first musical memories. Plus, it’s been one of my favorite songs for 20 years.
We’ve been playing this song live for years. It’s usually the full electric set, but we’ve done it live and acoustically here for the Laptop Sessions music blog. As I’ve mentioned many times in the past, the goal of the Laptop Sessions cover songs blog is twofold. First, we want to put an end to bad YouTube cover song videos forever. And second? We want to give a different take on our favorite songs. This track, though mostly acoustically based in the original recording, is still not the same without George Harrison’s amazing lead guitar part. But, we figured it would make the song sound different to only break out the acoustic guitars and the bongos for this cover song video.
One thing I love about this performance is the energy our band, Masters of the Universe (or MoU), puts into “Handle With Care”. From the video, you can tell that we’re all having a good time singing one of our favorite Traveling Wilburys songs. The harmonies, though not perfect (or complete, without band member Becky), are still pretty good. And sure, the bongos are a bit louder than we would’ve liked. But again, this was a fun acoustic live performance. I think that having more energy in a video recording is even better than getting it note-perfect. That’s one of the reasons why Masters of the Universe earned a nomination for Best Album of the Year by the New Haven Advocate in 2006. We made an album that consisted mostly of our live set of original songs. The songs sound great, but if we recorded everything separately, it probably would’ve come out much cleaner. But, the thing that made MoU’s album stand out from the rest was the energy we had. The songs would start out slowly and gradually get faster as it went on. You can tell that the band is having a good time when something like that happens. Plenty of people can play music in a technically correct manner. But, it’s something special when you’ve got a band firing on all cylinders, playing music together in a circle. You can really feel the energy in that album.
I know this has been requested before, so I hope you enjoy tonight’s Traveling Wilburys cover song! It’s my tribute to both George Harrison and Roy Orbison, and you know I’ll be doing more songs from George, Roy, and the Wilburys in the weeks to come!
Hello everyone. A somber Laptop Session today, as I pay tribute to Dan Fogelberg, who wrote one of the best songs of all time in “Same Old Lang Syne”. No matter what generation you’re from, I’m sure you can relate to this song. Meeting up with someone from your past that evokes such strong memories is one of those experiences that just seems like part of life. I can’t explain how much I enjoy “Same Old Lang Syne”. The song is really the anti-Christmas song because of how somber the tone/mood is. Honestly, it isn’t really even a Christmas song. It’s just a song about Mr. Fogelberg (which is clearly a Jewish name, isn’t it?) was out one Christmas Eve and how he ran into an old girlfriend. The reminisced about the old times they had together and even though they had a good time, they both knew that they’d moved on in life.
When the woman leaves, Dan’s left with “that old familiar pain” that he felt back when he had relationships in his school years. I remember that pain. It’s a pain I never want to feel again. Though, as I said in my song, “The Game” from Masters of the Universe’s “Homestead’s Revenge” album, “Don’t you tell me you don’t miss the game.” You should really listen to that album- click here! There’s a certain thrill about the “game” of it all- it’s exciting, but most times it leaves you heartbroken. Of course, Dan Fogelberg talked about that sentiment perfectly in “Same Old Lang Syne” when he said, “The snow turned into rain.”
This song always made my brother and I think of Christmas being over. And I guess that’s the realization Dan Fogelberg came to when he wrote this song, too. He realized that his old flame had died. Of course, growing up, our take on the song was this: all the presents have been opened and now we have to clean up! Doesn’t exactly have the same sentiment, right?
Of course, Dan wrote many other great songs, but his passing makes the song even more poignant now.
The one funny thing is that I was planning on doing this music video the day BEFORE he died anyway because it’s always been one of my favorite Christmas-time songs. Instead, I make this acoustic cover song music video a tribute.
To all Dan Fogelberg fans- I’m sorry for your loss and I hope, as I do with all the Laptop Sessions cover song videos, that I’ve done the song justice here.