It don’t come easy


This songwriting blog is entering its eighth month and still I feel as if I have just brushed the surface.

I have to confess: I haven’t been keeping up with this blog of late because I feel my songwriting is stale.

Yes I posted that new song, The River’s Edge. I just think it’s bland, not inventive, dialed in.

Last week, I had the pleasure to hear a new duo from Boise, Idaho, perform in Provincetown with spot-on harmonies and flawless guitar and confident stage presence (Blaze and Kelly) and I am in awe and a little sheepish when I look at video of my own performances.

What can I say in these posts about songwriting that fellow songwriters might benefit from? I’ve been writing poetry, now in song, most of my life, and I have a bit of a knack for finger-picking chord progressions in new ways. But you know what it takes to write songs? A whole lot of listening. To the newbies, the classics, and everything in between, local and cosmic.

I’d like the next song that I post here to be something I want to record. Capture permanently because it’s worth it, not because it’s the next thing I’ve written.

So here is a tune worth listening to that might inspire you. (Click on the music player on the Blaze & Kelly website.) It hasn’t inspired me to write anything yet, but it has inspired me seek more inspiration. Pull out that book of scales and start learning again. Grad school is done! Interactive communications commanded much of my attention for two years. I continued to write songs. But I haven’t grown in the ways I’d like to grow musically.

Now is the time to earn the right to save for and buy that Cole Clark guitar that sounded so sweet when I tried it out by focusing on the little things. The breathing, the pentatonic scales, the time spent absorbing Kris Delmhorst and Catie Curtis and Joni Mitchell and Tracy Chapman …. as well as the new sounds the Internet makes it possible to discover every day.

Join me in listening to Blaze & Kelly and the truth in (y)our heart about what really matters: making a song so lovely a total stranger will call out, “Play it again!”

2 thoughts on “It don’t come easy

  1. Sarah L

    Nice work Pat. Makes me want to play guitar and write songs. Don’t discredit yourself. You have a fine voice and I’m sure now that you have more time you will be able to bring your music to new heights. I myself will always love, ” Down By the River”…it so soothing and reassuring and relaxing. I want to hear more of your music live. 🙂 I love when I know about your life and it is reflected in the lyrics to your songs. Thanks for including me in your musical journey.
    love, Sarah 🙂

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