Brad Meador
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Aug 24

Chris Isaak @ the Mountain Winery

Filed under: live music | Back to: Homepage

In 1991 I had a transformative experience at the Tower Theater.  I sat on the second row and watched, in awe, a concert by Chris Isaak and Silvertone.  After that show, I HAD to learn guitar, so I borrowed one and taught myself Blue Spanish Sky

For the next several years I was practically a one man Chris Isaak cover band (a few old covers posted here).   The joy the guitar has brought to my life can be traced straight back to that magical moment in Houston.

I have seen the show many many times since then trying to recapture that experience.  Last night at the Mountain Winery came awfully close.  The highlights included a gospel version of Don’t Make Me Dream About You:

Bass player Roly Salley singing his original, Killing the Blues (a near perfect song that has been covered by Shawn Colvin, John Prine, Alison Kraus and Robert Plant and many others):

And a story about playing the streets of Santa Cruz with his brother (a girl watching whispered to her boyfriend “Is that Chris Isaak” and he said “Yeah, and he used to be BIG!”):

Thanks, Chris, for the inspiration over the last 18 years!  See you next year at the Mountain Winery.

Aug 05

John Mayer on Songwriting

Filed under: songwriting | Back to: Homepage

I tried not to post this video (largely because of Mayer’s smug comment at the end) but it stuck with me.  See how John writes a new song by taking three other popular melodies and riffing on the:

That’s pretty much how I write music – start playing a rhythm\chord progression and sing some vowel sounds over them until words emerge.  Hope that the lyrics eventually make sense.  That’s also why I’m having a tough time bringing three new songs to closure – they’re lyrics only and no melody is presenting itself.  I’ll figure it out eventually, I guess…