• Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition) Edit: Entry Now In! Oct 8th
  • Started by MichaelA
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
  • MichaelA
  • Chef de Partie
  • *
  • Songwriting Addict

    • 976


    • 426
    • August 31, 2019, 23:25:43
    • Somewhere near Liverpool, UK
  • more
« Last Edit: October 08, 2017, 18:52:45 by MichaelA »
EDIT: Latest version 8.10.2017 https://soundcloud.com/michael-a-duffy/her-old-piano


____________________

ORIGINAL POST:

OK, so I've got a couple of ideas brewing for this competition. My inspirational input was provided by a photo provided by @Mar T. , the one featuring a couple trying to put a piano into a van.

The ideas I have are very different, but I am only going to develop one of them. So which one should it be? Please help me choose Chalk or Cheese!  ;)

I have done a couple of mini rough demos, just both fragments of the songs as they could become.

1. 'Piano In The Van'. This is a quirky supposedly fun number, a bit different to the sombre stuff I have been putting on here lately! I have got one verse and a chorus developing...

https://soundcloud.com/michael-a-duffy/piano-in-the-van. (This is CHEESE!) LINK NOW DELETED

2. 'Her Old Piano' . This idea is more melancholic, as the girl is leaving the guy and taking her piano with her! I have just a chorus so far and a very basic demo backing track, all very much in development.

https://soundcloud.com/michael-a-duffy/her-old-piano (This then is CHALK!) LINK NOW DELETED

LYRICS:

Piano in the Van


I was groovin’
On the movin’
Till I saw her disapprovin’
Oh yeah, uh-oh

Mad obsessions
Bad expressions
As I moved her prized possessions
Oh yeah, uh oh

Then she turned to me and said it
I’ve seen more strength in a tea-bag
And I thought you were the man
To put my old piano in the van

Oh it burned me as she said it
I’ve seen more meat on a chip
And I thought you were the man
To put my old piano in the van

Piano in the van
Piano in the van
Piano in the van
If you’re a real man
Oooh



Her Old Piano

Now she’s all packed up to go
And I can’t tell her ‘no’
She’s played me the last tune
On her old piano

Now she’s all packed to go
It’s the end of our show
She’s played me the last tune
On her old piano

----------------------------------

So what's it to be Kitcheners? Chalk or Cheese. Or are they both rubbish?  ::) Any preferences will be gratefully received, as well as any pointers, ideas etc.

Thanks!!!  ::thumb::
If you like novels with a musical theme, why not try 'Sixth Beatle - When Music Changed The World', easily found on Amazon and Google. It is amazing, although as the author I may be biased!


  • Dutchbeat
  • MADministrator
  • Michelin Starred Chef
  • *
  • *
  • If you can stand the Beat, get into the Kitchen!

    • 8970


    • 1430
    • Yesterday at 21:33:42
  • more
Re: Help! Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition)
Reply #1 on: August 20, 2017, 19:35:19
i love that line: and I thought you were the Man, to put my old piano in the van

that is fun, weird and yet still a bit wicked  ;D ;D ;D
in the first version

i can not believe how different the versions are, great  ::thumb:: ::thumb::

but i prefer the first demo, that is my taste  :P :P 8) 8) 8), and go full out with a more heavy beat on that hook

just my two bitcoin cents..... i guess..... that means i choose for: "CHEESE!" (that never happens to me  :P :-[)
me, myself, and Pie


  • Leonard Scaper
  • Global Moderator
  • Executive Chef
  • *
  • *
  • Guest Chef

    • 3988


    • 1148
    • Yesterday at 23:29:24
    • Terra Firma
  • more
Re: Help! Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition)
Reply #2 on: August 20, 2017, 23:33:59
I am seriously impressed with both of these. Seriously good roughs.

I was all about cheese when I was listening to "Piano In The Van"......but "Her Old Piano" definitely has my vote. I have heard you do both cheese and chalk Michael, and I like both. But I think that when you get serious you really shine.
"The main thing is to have a gutsy approach....but use your head." Julia Child

 "In a world of robotic conformity, the only originality left in music is the imperfections" Eric Craptone

"Special thanks to Steve Gleason for making me who I am today." Leonard Scaper

Lenny's Tunes: http://www.soundclick.com/bands/page_music.cfm?bandID=540680

https://soundcloud.com/vincentgleason


  • MichaelA
  • Chef de Partie
  • *
  • Songwriting Addict

    • 976


    • 426
    • August 31, 2019, 23:25:43
    • Somewhere near Liverpool, UK
  • more
Re: Help! Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition)
Reply #3 on: August 21, 2017, 12:09:12
Thanks @Dutchbeat, yep I should have guessed that you would choose CHEESE!  ;D Well if this is the one I go with I will definitely big up the beat in parts as you suggest. I am having a giggle doing this one, so that's fun in itself. I am definitely going to use this 'inspirational input' idea again on my own in future. It really does help focus the mind.

Less predictable is Mr @Leonard Scaper , I thought you could go either way, Steve. But I am glad you like my serious stuff, and interesting for me that you preferred CHALK here, as the demo rough is only very short. Thanks for the confidence boost!

Oh well, early days, but the score is now 1-1 for CHALK vs CHEESE, so I guess as yet the Kitchen must reveal still more... ;D

Thanks all for now. M  ::thumb::


  • Mar T.
  • Senior Site Administrator
  • Michelin Starred Chef
  • *
  • *
  • Pay it forward! (watch that movie..)

    • 6702


    • 1671
    • Yesterday at 22:45:17
    • Duiven
    • http://twitter.com/MartiMediaSC http://www.facebook.com/MartiMedia http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zEBmQkchurQ https://soundcloud.com/martimedia
  • more
Re: Help! Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition)
Reply #4 on: August 22, 2017, 00:19:40
Hey @MichaelA ! Aaah that's so great to be able to hear two interpretations of possible stories potentially existing behind this picture I took!
And how fantastic to see you provided sketches including recordings of both ideas!
Of course as I'm a cheesy guy I loved the cheesy version best, it touched me. But the chalk version made me laugh.. (that's intended in the good way).
What's your idea after a few comments of 'us' kitcheners? Are you going to be cheesy or chalky?
Thanks for sharing my friend!
:mart:
I'm proud of this track, check it out! https://soundcloud.com/martimedia/dreams


Re: Help! Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition)
Reply #5 on: August 22, 2017, 03:55:00
Hi @MichaelA

Nice job!
At this point I'd vote for "Chalk" ("Her Old Piano") because it has a stronger melody. (But, I'm sure you could do that with "Piano in a Van" going forward)

It cold be really funny if you made a song where somehow the listener chooses the ending.  :)
1. Sad ending - She leaves him and takes her old piano with her
2. Happy ending - She decides to move back with him so he has to put her old piano in his van....at which point she begins to question her decision due to his lack of spatial awareness, packing ability, physical strength and masculine attributes....
Bill
Songwriter, Keyboards, Arranger, Producer & Engineer for November Sound

November Sound is based on the Mother, Father & Son musical trio of Melissa, Bill & Will. I'm the father so anything I post will have my wife singing and/or my son playing percussion.


  • MichaelA
  • Chef de Partie
  • *
  • Songwriting Addict

    • 976


    • 426
    • August 31, 2019, 23:25:43
    • Somewhere near Liverpool, UK
  • more
Re: Help! Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition)
Reply #6 on: August 22, 2017, 10:11:16
Hi @Mar T. , I think you are preferring the slow melancholy/serious song yeah? Which I actually call 'chalk', not cheese. Well I think that's what you mean!  ;D   ::) Thanks for the early encouragement anyway.

Also thanks @Bill from November Sound , interesting that you say 'chalk' has the stronger melody, but then have been sparked to consider options for the wacky song. I like your ideas there!  ::thumb::

Well I am going to leave this open for a few days and see what other comments come in. So far, I think it is 3 - 1 in favour of the sad song! But early, early days!


  • Leonard Scaper
  • Global Moderator
  • Executive Chef
  • *
  • *
  • Guest Chef

    • 3988


    • 1148
    • Yesterday at 23:29:24
    • Terra Firma
  • more
Re: Help! Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition)
Reply #7 on: August 22, 2017, 11:03:15
2. Happy ending - She decides to move back with him so he has to put her old piano in his van....

I would vote for a version of the Happy Ending.......the song could end with them playing a duet on the piano in his tiny two room flat surrounded by love and unpacked boxes.  :)


  • Mar T.
  • Senior Site Administrator
  • Michelin Starred Chef
  • *
  • *
  • Pay it forward! (watch that movie..)

    • 6702


    • 1671
    • Yesterday at 22:45:17
    • Duiven
    • http://twitter.com/MartiMediaSC http://www.facebook.com/MartiMedia http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zEBmQkchurQ https://soundcloud.com/martimedia
  • more
Re: Help! Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition)
Reply #8 on: August 22, 2017, 23:58:23
Hi @Mar T. , I think you are preferring the slow melancholy/serious song yeah? Which I actually call 'chalk', not cheese. Well I think that's what you mean!  ;D   ::) Thanks for the early encouragement anyway.

Also thanks @Bill from November Sound , interesting that you say 'chalk' has the stronger melody, but then have been sparked to consider options for the wacky song. I like your ideas there!  ::thumb::

Well I am going to leave this open for a few days and see what other comments come in. So far, I think it is 3 - 1 in favour of the sad song! But early, early days!
Oh dear I switched the labels indeed... Sorry for that.. To me the version I liked most was 'Her old piano' which I labeled 'cheese' incorrectly.. Felt it was a bit cheesy though haha. And I like that!  ;) ;)
Sometimes language barriers challenge me. What does it mean when you label 'chalk'? Just for future prevention of mistakes  ;) ;)


  • MichaelA
  • Chef de Partie
  • *
  • Songwriting Addict

    • 976


    • 426
    • August 31, 2019, 23:25:43
    • Somewhere near Liverpool, UK
  • more
Re: Help! Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition)
Reply #9 on: August 23, 2017, 10:48:42
Sorry @Mar T. for making you crash into the language barrier. You guys in the forum who speak English only as a second language are very good at it. So it easy to forget that you might not understand everything as clearly as we native speakers.

Since you ask, 'Chalk and Cheese' is a common phrase in English language that just means two things or people that are completely different. Like opposites. In the US, I think they would probably say 'like night and day' to mean the same thing.

The words used are metaphorical, to complicate things (!) so what is being described - like my songs here - do not in themselves have to possess any qualities of chalk, cheese, night or day! I am just saying they are completely different, that is all.

Why is English so complicated, ha ha!  ;D While your use of 'cheesy' is different again, and means something is unsubtle or a bit obvious, or 'corny'. Overly romantic songs can be labelled cheesy, as can unsubtle funny songs. So both my songs could be seen as cheesy in some people's eyes!  ::)

Anyway, apologies to you for not taking more care of the language I use to a multi-lingual audience. I will try to be more careful about that in future!  :whistle:

Also thanks @Leonard Scaper , I like the twist of the happy ending that you voted for from @Bill from November Sound 's options. I think my wife would like a happy ending story for a change, as she keeps telling me my songs are miserable!  ;D How to turn that narrative around in the space of a couple of verses and a bridge seems quite a challenge though. But I am only doing all this for fun, so a challenge is what I like!


  • Jim
  • Chef de Partie
  • *
  • Weirdy Beardy

    • 829


    • 494
    • April 27, 2019, 01:33:24
    • Nottingham, GB
    • https://soundcloud.com/jim-clark-17
  • more
Re: Help! Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition)
Reply #10 on: August 23, 2017, 13:43:14
Good work!

I vote for Chalk, "Her old piano".  ::thumb::

I've been holding off reading this, in case it influenced my song around the same input, but that's most down now so I'll share it in a bit.  ;)

Oh, and the language thing @MichaelA...you'll always find pitholes, it's impossible to realise all the little idioms and quirks of the [English] language which will cause confusion (sometimes it's hard enough talking to Americans and we, supposedly, are speaking the same language!).  I've lost count of how many times I've had to say things like, "Ah, yes I know it's spelt the same, but it's pronounced like this, you have to tell from its context..." or "Yeah, I know it doesn't make sense but that's what you'd write...I could explain, but you'd have to know about modal modifiers".  ???


  • MichaelA
  • Chef de Partie
  • *
  • Songwriting Addict

    • 976


    • 426
    • August 31, 2019, 23:25:43
    • Somewhere near Liverpool, UK
  • more
Re: Help! Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition)
Reply #11 on: August 23, 2017, 19:11:31
Thanks @Jim, so that's 4-1 in favour of chalk so far. Any more, people?  ;) Yes language can present its problems, certainly for songwriters. Remember Abba, for example...'Dancing Queen, feel the beat from the tangerine, oh yeah...'  ;D


  • Mar T.
  • Senior Site Administrator
  • Michelin Starred Chef
  • *
  • *
  • Pay it forward! (watch that movie..)

    • 6702


    • 1671
    • Yesterday at 22:45:17
    • Duiven
    • http://twitter.com/MartiMediaSC http://www.facebook.com/MartiMedia http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zEBmQkchurQ https://soundcloud.com/martimedia
  • more
Re: Help! Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition)
Reply #12 on: August 24, 2017, 02:31:21
« Last Edit: August 24, 2017, 02:33:03 by Mar T. »
Sorry @Mar T. for making you crash into the language barrier. You guys in the forum who speak English only as a second language are very good at it. So it easy to forget that you might not understand everything as clearly as we native speakers.

Since you ask, 'Chalk and Cheese' is a common phrase in English language that just means two things or people that are completely different. Like opposites. In the US, I think they would probably say 'like night and day' to mean the same thing.

The words used are metaphorical, to complicate things (!) so what is being described - like my songs here - do not in themselves have to possess any qualities of chalk, cheese, night or day! I am just saying they are completely different, that is all.

Why is English so complicated, ha ha!  ;D While your use of 'cheesy' is different again, and means something is unsubtle or a bit obvious, or 'corny'. Overly romantic songs can be labelled cheesy, as can unsubtle funny songs. So both my songs could be seen as cheesy in some people's eyes!  ::)

Anyway, apologies to you for not taking more care of the language I use to a multi-lingual audience. I will try to be more careful about that in future!  :whistle:

Also thanks @Leonard Scaper , I like the twist of the happy ending that you voted for from @Bill from November Sound 's options. I think my wife would like a happy ending story for a change, as she keeps telling me my songs are miserable!  ;D How to turn that narrative around in the space of a couple of verses and a bridge seems quite a challenge though. But I am only doing all this for fun, so a challenge is what I like!
Ooooh okay @MichaelA thanks for that very clear explaination! It made perfect sense and now I understand (most of the times it's the metaphors/imagery I seem to miss). So you helped me advancing my english  ;) ;)
No no no, don't feel sorry.. plz just talk english and use any expression like you would do normally, I (and my fellow non-native-english speakers) might ask a question now and then when I/we clearly misinterpreted something, but I'm sure that's no prob for anyone.. We all need to express ourselves, don't we?
Luckily we've discovered now that most of us like the 'Chalk' version so we've all been helpful  ;) ;)
Cheers my friend, and keep us posted about the development!
:mart:


  • MichaelA
  • Chef de Partie
  • *
  • Songwriting Addict

    • 976


    • 426
    • August 31, 2019, 23:25:43
    • Somewhere near Liverpool, UK
  • more
Re: Help! Chalk or Cheese? (Inspirational Input Competition)
Reply #13 on: October 08, 2017, 17:55:32
« Last Edit: October 08, 2017, 18:50:17 by MichaelA »
Wow, how time flies and it is now nearly deadline time for the Inspirational Input comp!!!

Thanks to those who voted for me to develop the more serious song (Chalk) called 'Her Old Piano'. I have finally got round to doing it this week, so here it is!

https://soundcloud.com/michael-a-duffy/her-old-piano

There seemed to have been a preference for a happy ending to this, so I have duly obliged - shamelessly trying to be a crowd pleaser and even though this is not like me at all!  ;D

Lyrics:

Her Old Piano

Our song went wrong
Somehow I couldn't see
We lost our rhythm and our harmony
And all along she waited patiently
For me to find the key, find harmony
Till out of tune and so discordantly
Knew she was leaving me

CHORUS
She was all packed to go
I could not tell her 'no'
She packed all of her things
And her old piano
She was all packed to go
Was the end of our show
She'd played me a last tune
On her old piano
Piano

The van was packed
She planned to drive so far
I stood in the street
Right there with my guitar
I sang a song I hoped she'd never forget
That song we sang together when we first met
There was no discord, only harmony
And then she turned to me
RPT CHORUS

She asked do you love me?
Do you still love me darling?
Like in that song
From all those years ago
I said I still love you
Yeah I still love you darling
I love this song
You and your old piano

She was all packed to go
But then something said no
She brought back all her things
And her old piano
She was all packed to go
Till we planned our new show
She'll play for me again
On her old piano     
Piano

Here is the pic again - which inspired the song, and taken by @Mar T. :




  • Mar T.
  • Senior Site Administrator
  • Michelin Starred Chef
  • *
  • *
  • Pay it forward! (watch that movie..)

    • 6702


    • 1671
    • Yesterday at 22:45:17
    • Duiven
    • http://twitter.com/MartiMediaSC http://www.facebook.com/MartiMedia http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zEBmQkchurQ https://soundcloud.com/martimedia
  • more
Hey @MichaelA , that's perfectly in time, thanks for sharing! It's wonderful to see that the picture I took inspired you to write a song, and I loved to listen to what it's been sparking in your imagination. I love the happy-ending lyrics, well written, beautiful story! I like the way you executed the song, creative sound you're producing with the instrumental.
My main suggestion is about the dynamics, I'd emphasize the chorus (in some way) a bit more to build some extra contrast to the verses. Other than that I enjoyed listening.  Well done!

Cheers!!
:mart: