It’s been a while since posting because I’ve been home for the last six weeks or so in California (and song camps in Colorado and Oregon.) I slept off the 16 hour flight upon arrival in Singapore yesterday, so today is like waking up to a blank page. It’s a little daunting.
Since I haven’t been at my desk recording, I’m sharing a song I recorded several years ago that’s never been released. Twisted Open starts with a guy who’s conflicted about home:
“Not my town, not my town
Never felt at home here
Got no friends to gather round
Lonely to the bone here. “
It’s a little bit like the way I feel about living in Singapore, though a tad overly dramatic. Being a Cabana Boy is never really lonely. But truth be told, it was so great being home in America to see family and friends. It had been a long 7 month stretch in Singapore and I was ready to see my peeps. (There were a few I didn’t get to see but I’ll hopefully catch them next time.)
The concept of “home” pops up in a lot of my songs. On my record Gravedigger’s Boy there is only one song that doesn’t have the word “home” in it. As much as I’m digging this traveling adventure, I’m extremely domestic at heart.
But here’s the weird thing. When I visit home it doesn’t really feel like home. Since I’m there to reconnect (but not to work) it feels more like being on vacation. And after a while there’s a part of me that can’t wait to get “back home” to Singapore and start into work again. This topsy-turvy switcheroo turns the whole concept of home on it’s head. It makes me feel kind of jerked around; “twisted open” in a way.
Twisted Open was recorded with Tom Prasada Rao at the Tofu Recording Bar in Texas. Tom had an old tenor guitar on the wall that I started noodling with. Combined with the clawhammer uke, it gives the song a unique sound to my ears. And Jagoda on hand drums always makes a tune better.
For a while I thought I was going to release a “double record” with Twisted Open as the title. One cd would have the humorous “twisted” songs that I do, and the other cd , “Open”, would feature more emotional, “open-hearted” tunes. I love both ends of that spectrum, and I still think it’s a cool concept, but fatally flawed. It’s hard nowadays to find anyone ready to listen to one cd, let alone two. So that idea now sits in the maybe-one-day-prob’ly-never file.
So for now I’m releasing Twisted Open into the wide, swift-moving waters of the streaming inter-web. Setting free the song. (Strictly a catch and release man these days.)
Meanwhile, it’s great to be home after being HOME. It’s fun to get back to wrestling another blank page to the ground. And the day may not be too far off when I hang up my Cabana Wear and head home for good. That’s only a shame ‘cus I’ll miss the uniform. I’ve never looked better!