Inspiration Is A Funny Thing

April 14, 2021 § 2 Comments

Believe it or not, today’s entry is inspired by Texas Senator Ted Cruz. Well, in a manner of speaking.

I was watching clips from A Late Show with Stephen Colbert featuring former House Speaker John Boehner or Ohio, Boehner recently published his memoir, titled “On The House: A Washington Memoir.”

During the interview, Boehner referred to Ted Cruz as “Lucifer in the flesh.” After he said it, my wife said the phrase sounded like the line of a song.

I decided she was right, and so I wrote today’s lyrical selection. The song is a little different from anything I’ve written before.

The first section of the song is spoken, without music, almost as if it were a poem being read. Then, the music kicks in, followed by the verses.

At the end of the song, it circles back on itself and the opening spoken section is repeated but is sung the second time through. Despite being indirectly inspired by Ted Cruz, the song makes no mention of him though I thought it fitting to set the lyrics in Texas.

Enjoy!

Lucifer In The Flesh

(spoken)
In the dog days of Texas
It can get hot as hell
And when the wind’s just right
You’ll pick up a sulphur smell

The sun is like an oven
The ground is dry as dust
You’ll find yourself confused
And not knowing who to trust

Out there in the distance
It must be a mirage
Lucifer in the flesh
All decked out in camouflage

(sung)
There was Koresh out in Waco
Jeffs in San Angelo
Both called themselves prophets
They were devils, don’t you know

Sometimes in the desert
You can hear the demons cry
So you close your eyes
Hoping to let sleeping dogs lie

When, there at your shoulder
You feel an icy chill
Lucifer in the flesh
Coming to collect the bill

BRIDGE
He’ll take the pound of flesh you owe him
Then come back for more
No matter what you do
You’ll never even up the score
If it sounds too good to be true
Just look in his eyes
You might see old Lucifer
Under his disguise

INSTRUMENTAL

From the outskirts of El Paso
To those Austin city lights
You’d best watch out for Lucifer
He’s got you in his sights

He’ll tempt you with a promise
He won’t intend to keep
He’ll creep into your dreams
And haunt you in your sleep

You’d best be keeping watch
Or you might see one day
Lucifer in the flesh
Come to steal your soul away

REPEAT BRIDGE

In the dog days of Texas
It can get hot as hell
And when the wind’s just right
You’ll pick up a sulphur smell

The sun is like an oven
The ground is dry as dust
You’ll find yourself confused
And not knowing who to trust

Out there in the distance
It must be a mirage
Lucifer in the flesh
All decked out in camouflage

Look off in the distance
You can see it’s no mirage
Lucifer in the flesh
All decked out in camouflage

© 2021 Walt Huntsman. All rights reserved.

When Weariness Strikes

April 12, 2021 § Leave a comment

There are times, especially at night or after reading a series of reports of bad news, when a touch of melancholy strikes. At those times, I find myself thinking back to goals and dreams I had but abandoned, things I thought I’d do and places I thought I’d go but never did.

Today’s entry tries to tap into that feeling. The original version was written in the first person, but I changed it to a third person viewpoint. Read it both ways and let me know which you think is better.

Sadness Like Rain

Tears
You can’t seem to hold them back
Sadness like rain
Sadness like rain

Fears
Got you so you want to crack
Under the pain
Under the pain

Seems you’re chasing your own tail
Got you dizzy, going ’round
Seeking answers to the questions
That you still haven’t found
Not sure what you believe
Your life called into doubt
Searching for a truth
You still haven’t figured out

Now
You feel like you want to cry
Sadness like rain
Sadness like rain

How
Do you reach up to the sky
And break the chain
And break the chain

Seems you’re trapped by your success
Things that you once thought were true
Forced to think about the things
You swore you’d never do
You can play to win
But circumstance is like a game
Without a guarantee
That you won’t get the blame

INSTRUMENTAL

Tears
How you wish they would run dry
Sadness like rain
Sadness like rain

Years
When you felt like you could die
All that remains
All that remains

Is the absence of completeness
All the things you’ve never done
Excuses for defeats
In battles you have never won
The hands of the clock
Move ever faster, ’round and ’round
Silence now engulfs you
And you’re deafened by the sound

Sadness like rain . . . .
Sadness like rain

© 2021 Walt Huntsman. All rights reserved.

Inspired By Technology?

April 7, 2021 § Leave a comment

Technology is both blessed and cursed by most of us. It has been used to help bring clean water to parts of Africa, and it has been used to broadcast millions of cat pictures and memes to a world which didn’t know it was looking for such things. (It wasn’t.)

Cell phones have made it easier for people to stay in touch while traveling and made it easier than ever to take advantage of one of the 15 extended warranty calls received each day. (I’m still holding out.) Facebook and other social media has made it easier to stay connected with family and reconnect with long lost friends and has made it easier to share more of our lives with others, whether they or we want it or not.

Music has seen its own technological advances over the years, starting with electric guitars in the 1930s through to the digital software and audio interfaces we use today. Today’s post was inspired by an advance (development? evolution?) in acoustic guitars.

Recently, I watched some YouTube videos featuring a couple of these “evolved” acoustic guitars. One featured the Yamaha LS-TA which, through the use of an actuator built inside the guitar, allows the player to incorporate reverb and/or chorus effects without the use of pedals or post-processing.

The guitar that really piqued my interest, though, was the HyVibe THV10DCE Smart Guitar. In addition to the reverb and chorus effects of the Yamaha, the HyVibe (with its two actuators) offers the ability to add delay, distortion, tremolo, looping, even Bluetooth connectivity.

The combination of the sound of the guitar (I want one, can you tell?) and some of the music the demonstrators were playing inspired today’s lyrical entry. It is a blues number, one I hear played with something of a swampy style, incorporating some reverb and perhaps a little echo or distortion.

That desire for something of a swampy sound took me in a specific lyrical direction as well. Although not directly related or inspired by Robert Johnson, I think the legend of him at the crossroads was also in the back of my mind. Enjoy!

Feels Like I’m Slipping

Devil wind is blowing
Sun beating down
Trying to make my way
Back to solid ground

Feels like I’m slipping
Ground is shifting under me
Feels like I’m slipping
Trouble is, it’s something I can’t see

My soul’s a desert
Dusty and dry
Devil’s got a hold of me
Sometimes, I want to die

Feels like I’m slipping
Seems like the earth will swallow me
Feels like I’m slipping
And there’s no hope of amnesty

INSTRUMENTAL

BRIDGE
I look for guidance
None to be found
I ask for answers
But I don’t hear a sound
Feels like I’m swimming
Against the tide
Looking for refuge
But there’s no place to hide

The Devil’s laughing
He’s making plans
Ready to rip my soul apart
With his bare hands

Feels like I’m slipping
I’m picking up velocity
Feels like I’m slipping
Done in by my stupidity
Feels like I’m slipping
It’s gonna be
It’s gonna be
It’s gonna be the death of me

© 2021 Walt Huntsman. All rights reserved.