“Keep On Going” (Original Wednesday Acoustic Song)

Originally posted 2009-04-29 20:32:23. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Chris Moore:

And welcome one, welcome all to my Laptop Session for this very special Original Wednesday here at your source for the best acoustic cover and original song music videos available on the internet today!  (That’s a mouthful…)

You may be wondering, why is this day so special?

Well, for one, this is the birthday of Laptop Sessions series creator Jim Fusco.  On behalf of the other contributors and the loyal viewers of this blog, I’d like to wish him a very happy 25th birthday!  Only a quarter century in, and he’s accumulated quite a back catalog of music, writing, and side projects.  If you haven’t already, you should head on over to jimfusco.com.

Take it from me: the best gift you can get Jim this year is to spend a measely $10 on his brand new album Halfway There.  Go ahead, check out the album in streaming audio at his official website, or use the search function at the top of this page to listen to Laptop Sessions of many of the Halfway There tracks, read a full review (another one from Jeff coming soon…), and see the beautiful, custom artwork he used for the cover.

Okay, that’s enough plugging for one post.

Tonight’s session is based on a song that I never recorded for an album.  “Keep On Going” is an early track, as you will most likely be able to tell!  Although the words are straightforward and the chord progression is simple, I’ve always liked this little tune.  I originally wrote this song as a direct statement to my best friend (Jim, if you haven’t made the connection yet), assuring him after a rough week that things really will turn out all right, even though people — particularly high school aged people — can be cruel.  I hope he’s seen that to be true, as he’s moved on to college, made many lifelong friends, and become engaged to Becky Daly.  For all you former Pine Loft faithfuls: yes, this is indeed the same Becky Daly of Chris, Jim, and Becky fame!

I still sing “Keep On Going” when I feel stressed out or begin to think something — a relationship, a professional endeavor, etc. — won’t work out.  I hope you like it.

As a final note, stepping back into the present, I just started listening to the new Bob Dylan album, Together Through Life.  In case you’re questioning my devotion, there’s only one reason why I didn’t start listening yesterday: I pre-ordered the album on Amazon.com and didn’t spring for any more than Free Super Saver Shipping.  So, I’m cheap.  What do you want???  :-)

Did I mention I’m loving the album?  As I type, it’s blaring through my room and probably throughout the condo complex.  I may even get a letter in the mail from the condo association condemning me for noise pollution or disturbing the peace or some other such nonsense, but it will be worth it!  I spent the day at school today wearing the Best Buy exclusive Together Through Life t-shirt that Mike so graciously passed along to me from his purchase of the album (thanks again, Fusc!!).  I made certain to wear a white button down shirt today and a narrow tie, so as to have the Dylan t-shirt show through.  Thanks to at least one inquisitive student in each class I taught, I got to talk about the new album at least once every 82 minutes today!

I’ll save my commentary on Together Through Life for the review that will most certainly come, but allow me to share a couple comments.  First, this is not what I was expecting after Love & Theft and Modern Times.  Then again, that’s pretty much what Dylan himself suggested, so I’m not really surprised.  My favorite line thus far is the chorus to track three: “Hell is my wife’s home town.”  As if there’s any question as to whether Dylan’s dry sense of humor is still intact, just listen for his chuckling — yes, his chuckling — in the outro of that song.  Finally, although it’s a slow album to start, just wait for “Jolene” and “Shake Shake Mama” to really get your foot tapping.

And, with that taste of this new Dylan album, I’ll emphatically suggest you need to buy both Halfway There and Together Through Life and be on my merry way.

See you next session!

Eric Clapton’s “Clapton” (2010) – Yes, No, or Maybe So

Originally posted 2010-11-16 11:00:07. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Eric Clapton’s Clapton (2010) – NO

(September 27, 2010)

Clapton (Eric Clapton, 2010)

Clapton (Eric Clapton, 2010)


For the fogey-at-heart, Clapton is a trip down Memory Lane with a set of covers recorded on high quality modern doohickeys; for anyone searching for a creative pulse, turn your interests elsewhere — this is a Clapton who has yet to regain what was lost post-Reptile.

(And, for the record, I may dry heave if I read one more review praising the overplayed ho-hum predictability of  “Diamonds Made From Rain” and “Autumn Leaves.”)

(P.S. I considered simply writing: “Clapton: the brilliantly original title says it all,” but I wouldn’t want to be harsh.)

Top Two Tracks:

If I had to choose, “Everything Will Be Alright” & “Hard Time Blues”

“Beyond Here Lies Nothin'” by Bob Dylan – Chords, Tabs, and How to Play (Lyrics from “Together Through Life”)

Originally posted 2009-03-30 06:33:41. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

For the cover song music video, CLICK HERE!

” Beyond Here Lies Nothin’ ”
Bob Dylan

Am – Am – Dm – Am – E – Am

Oh, well, I love you pretty baby;
You’re the only love I’ve ever known.
Am                                  Dm
Just as long as you stay with me,
Dm                               Am
The whole world is my throne.

Am                      E
Beyond here lies nothin’…
E                                      Am
Nothin’ we can call our own.

Well I’m moving after midnight
Down boulevards of broken cars.
Don’t know what I’d do without her,
Without this love that we call ours.

Beyond here lies nothin’…
Nothing but the moon and stars.


Down every street there’s a window,
And every window’s made of glass.
We’ll keep on lovin’ pretty baby,
For as long as love will last.

Beyond here lies nothin’…
But the mountains of the past.

(SOLO) x2

Well my ship is in harbor,
And the sails are spread.
Listen to me, pretty baby:
Lay your hand upon my head.

Beyond here lies nothin’…
Nothin’ done and nothin’ said.


** These chords and lyrics are interpretations and transcriptions, respectively, and are the sole property of the copyright holder(s). They are posted on this website free of charge for no profit for the purpose of study and commentary, as allowed for under the “fair use” provision of U.S. copyright law, and should only be used for such personal and/or academic work. **

Michelle Branch’s “Everything Comes and Goes” (2010) – The Weekend Review

Originally posted 2010-09-24 16:32:06. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Chris Moore:

RATING:  2 / 5 stars

Four years since her last album — seven since her last solo album — Michelle Branch has finally graced us with twenty minutes of new music.  These twenty minutes are spread out across the six tracks that survived from Everything Comes and Goes (the album) to Everything Comes and Goes (the EP). 

According to Branch, this is a “bonus album,” as though we should be thanking a professional singer/songwriter/recording & performing artist for releasing new music every four — or seven — years.

Not surprisingly, Branch has opted to work in the country genre, picking up as a solo artist where she left off with the Wreckers.  And, as a testament to her apparent commercial value, her download-only initial release has been followed with a physical release, albeit an unimpressively packaged one, in some record stores.  Her lead single “Sooner or Later” even cracked the Billboard Hot 100.  In the meantime, ex-Wrecker Jessica Harp has receded from public life as a solo recording artist to focus on writing country songs, ostensibly motivated by fluctuating label support and in the absence of any breakthrough success.

So, Everything Comes and Goes is a survivor’s tale of sorts, perhaps to be read as a truth:  some people come and some people go.

In the case of the Wreckers, Branch obviously belongs to the former.

No stranger to single-worthy material, Branch makes it clear through this release that she still has the ability, as well as the desire, to write clear, concise tunes, any of which could be coming to a romantic comedy soundtrack at a music store near you.  The opener, “Ready to Let You Go,” may delve quite deeply into the country genre, Branch affecting the rural inflections that served her so well in her previous role as one half of that aforementioned duo, but this genre jumping is not so extreme as it might seem.

After track one fades, the remainder of the album leans most heavily toward pop/rock, with country flourishes. 

"Everything Comes and Goes" (2010)

"Everything Comes and Goes" (2010)

“Sooner or Later” begins deceptively, subdued and acoustic, yet when the groove sets in, it becomes apparent that this is the same Michelle Branch that recorded 2003’s outstanding Hotel Paper.  It may not be at the level of “it feels like she never left,” but there isn’t much rust to shake off.  And the the country inflections work quite well here, subdued as they are. 

The remainder of the EP slows down a bit, but retains its catchiness and simple beauty.  “Crazy Ride” peaks with the wonderful harmonies Branch layered on top, singing all the background vocals alone for the first time since her major label debut, The Spirit Room (2001).  “Summertime” and the title track are pretty songs, easy listening to be certain and notably underwhelming. 

The sole cover, “I Want Tears,” was written by two members of her musical team, and yet it still begs the question: was it necessary to turn to other writers for this release?  Apparently, the response to that question arrives in the affirmative, as there is but a single track — the title track — that is written by Branch alone. 

This should come as no surprise.  Branch and Harp co-wrote fewer than half of the songs on 2006’s Stand Still, Look Pretty, and Branch only contributed two others, one of which was a collaboration.  To be fair, this Wreckers disc is a truly excellent record, although Jessica Harp (formerly the background vocalist/friend to 2003 Branch) contributes what are arguably the best songs, tracks like “Tennessee” and “Cigarettes.” 

It is uncanny just how similar Harp and Branch sound on record, and yet there’s something to be said for Branch’s staying power as a recording artist.  (Of course, it sure must be helpful having pop-hockers like John Shanks hanging around throughout your career, ready to stitch together a potential hit, a relationship that, at least to a degree, begs the question: how much of Branch’s music is really Branch?)

Regardless, all that is on and around Everything Comes and Goes amounts to this: it is a solid EP, and a disappointing release from an artist who first promised a full studio album would drop in late ’08, then summer 2009.  The reality is a largely digital release of six songs.  Call it an EP, call it a “bonus album,” call it anything you’d like.

It is simply not a release of the quality one would expect from a singer/songwriter who took the roof off with her underrated and underappreciated 2003 solo album. 

Now, comfortably crouched under the Country cabin in the company of writers and producers very much in the habit of turning out hits, Branch’s work only hints at her individuality and potential.  Let’s hope her forthcoming full studio effort Different Kind of Country — scheduled for a 2011 release, which could just as easily become 2013 — is actually a different kind of country music.  I, for one, want something that is, for better or for worse, a legitimate Michelle Branch record.