This Way (or a better title, which can be put up to a vote)

Well, I went and wrote my very first song. Poetically it’s kind of a mess, but I noticed long ago that good songs sound like bad poems when you take the music away (maybe I should go through my bad poems and see if they’re salvageable with music? lol), so maybe I’m the worst possible person to judge that.

It’s definitely not great (and certainly not very rock – punk or otherwise 😉 ), but I happened across a chord progression and rhythm that I sort of took to, and decided, in that totally random Shelby-sort-of way to start pasting words to it and see if any of them stuck. That was yesterday, while watching Childhood’s End on syfy.

This is the very first full playthrough. It still requires practice, ironing out, and memory. I was totally reading it off a print out in itsy print in a room that really needs better lighting if I’m going to be reading tiny printouts in the black of night. It should be a little more smooth when I remember all the words and which order I put the chords in in the places I changed it up.

(recorded on my Ibanez uke, which is actually the quietest when unplugged, so may realistically be the best to record things with as long as I’m using my phone anyway.)




This Way (Or some other, more interesting title)

So you know/we’re all alone/

all alone.

And I can’t say/if that’s okay/

but it’s okay/ we’re born this way.



What would you give/for a life better lived?

I think that I’d give a song.

And when I look back it’s/all that I ask/

to stop looking /back at/ dark corners of fact/

that live between layers of lies.


So you know/we’re all alone/

all alone.

And if I say/that it’s okay/

then it’s okay/ we’re born this way.



Even though/we’re all alone

lying one lie/at a time

it’s not like/we’re all alike

but, we like to fake it.



We tell ourselves/that we need help

that we can’t stand/on our own.

And all that we are needs somebody else

without whom we can’t go on.

because lying is better/than laying in wait

and laying in wait/is all we have.


We all say/someday/ it will get better/

because better/can’t be this.

Then the day comes/that better tastes bitter/

but bitter is better/than being alone.



Just, so you know/we’re all alone/

all alone.

And if you say/that it’s okay/

then it’s okay/we’re born this way.


We’re all/born/this way.


Until Next Time, I’ve had a first. Good, bad or ugly, that’s cause for celebration!

9 thoughts on “This Way (or a better title, which can be put up to a vote)

  1. I loved it! Your strumming is very good, and consistent throughout the song. Your voice sounded excellent, and I’d love to hear it through a condenser mic with a preamp. Congrats on your song – you should be proud.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks.

      For now, I know fuck all about mics and amps. Lol. It still all sounds Chinese. Someday I’ll make sense of it. I do want to get some sort of little Mic set up for my lappy. It just makes sense both from the music end and the poetry end, to have some sort of decent recording set up. For now, I’ve figured out where to plunk my phone for the best possible balance, though, and that will have to do.

      There are a few hiccups in the strumming, but I probably only notice them because I remember where I screwed up. Mostly needs smoothing out and possibly a little trimming if possible. It’s 4+ minutes long! To say almost nothing. Lol.

      Still, a good start.


      1. Blue makes a good USB mic, for about 100 dollars. I think that the key to a great recording is a great preamp. That’s where things get really pricey. I have a single channel Grace M101 for vocals and it’s wonderful for vocals and acoustic instruments. Most of the the preamps that come with the I/O devices are usually pretty good. I use Focusrite I/O’s, since their preamps are really good.
        I think that your strumming was good. If it were in a DAW you could go back and punch in where the errors were and keep the majority of the song. I thought that the lyrics were excellent! I don’t like to have lyrics so prescriptive that people can’t derive their own meanings from them.


      2. I mucked up the chord changes a few places. I covered it up fairly well, but usually the vocal part suffered as a result. First play through though, so it’s to be expected.

        Since I come from a poetry background, the lyrics feel odd. To hit home with a poem, you need to make it kind of personal, or it gets really cliche, really fast. You also don’t have many elongated pauses, so more ideas fit in less time. Songs are backward to that. So, my poet brain says ‘this is really bad’, but that’s from a poet’s perspective. I’m used to starting with an idea, and moving from there. Here it was more like pulling words out of a black hole and hoping they made some sort of coherent sense at the end. It was a really odd way to work for me, going in and throwing words together with no concept of what the song was about until the end.

        I’ll try to remember all that. To be honest, I’m barely sure what a preamp’s function even is. I chose combo amps for my instruments to just not deal with any of it yet. I really need to just sit down and understand it from a functional perspective before I’ll feel comfortable buying much beyond the mic. I know what a mic’s job is. I have to work out how all the pieces work/what they’re for, first, I think, before I’ll feel comfortable investing in any of them.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I think that you touched upon an important point. Writing lyrics is so much different from poetry. I’ve tried to write music for poems that people have given me, but it’s really next to impossible for me to do that. That’s why I love Paul Simon so much, he’s as close to poetry as you can get. The preamp will give you your 48v of phantom power for your condenser mic, and also add gain to your input. A combination of a good mic and good preamp can make the difference in the recording of your voice.


      4. Yeah, well, poems would have to be tweaked lyrically, to work as songs. I imagine any poet handing you a song should know that.

        But, there’s a reason some musicians release books of poetry. I have one by Jewel.

        It’s not that you can’t be poetic and musical, but the process from A to B can make a big difference in how successful the attempt.

        See, that’s where my brain goes ‘huh?’ 48v of phantom power’ is a totally alien phrase to me.


      5. Cool. I really don’t think I need much atm. I’m still such a novice, but I know next will likely be some bare bones recording stuff.


  2. It’s pretty good, Shel, for a first song… i liked it.. writing a song is the best part about learning to play an instrument .. but yes, the strumming is great, the structure was good too..
    Great start.

    Liked by 1 person

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