Stay (Trouble in Mind Remix)

stay cover 1 album x

A-Side: Stay

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B-Side: Stay (Trouble in Mind Remix)

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The Savage Poor are adding a B-Side to our brand new single Stay.  (If in the ever changing world of the modern music business is still such a thing as a B-Side.)  I always liked the days of the proper B-Side when artists could do something outside the norm of what they would do on their proper albums.  There are no rules anymore.  We are going to put out a record sometime next year, but in the mean time we have too much material to wait.  These are recordings are independent and self made.  We don’t know what the fuck we’re doing, we have no budget, but we’re learning as we go along and dreaming big.  Often limitations lead to more exciting places anyway.  Occasionally I’ve gone into studios where the rule book prevents anything exciting from happening.  These B-sides will give us the chance to go down strange alleyways.  We hope that you’ll go along on this journey with us.

In the early days of Jamaican music they would take singles and experiment and turn them into dub.  These recordings were stranger, the midnight moon to the single’s sunshine.  The remix above is still a pop song in format, but that Jamaican music was definitely in my mind as I did the remix.  I always loved George Faith’s In the Midnight Hour/Ya Ya.  It almost sounds as if it could be in the movie Trainspotting if not for that groove.   It sounds like hash, narcotics, and cotton candy all mixed together.

Another favorite recording around these parts is Marianne Faithfull’s Trouble in Mind.  The remix started with an attempt to melt everything into a similar beautiful haze.  Somewhere between the two songs’ influence, this remix exists.  I’d be a clown if I suggested that on a technical level I got anywhere close to those all-time greats on one of our first attempts.  First of all, I simply don’t have the gear.  But I think there is something strange, beautiful, and unique there if you’ll simply take the time to dream along with a pair of headphones.

The credits are the same as the single, for the most part.  You can see all at the link below.  However, I should make special mention that great friend and Shinyribs compatriot Keith Langford graced this version with his infamous red maraca!

More credits, artwork, and information about the single Stay:

“Stay” Single Release by The Savage Poor

 

 

 

Stay – New and Improved

stay cover 1 album x

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My band The Savage Poor has just released a new single.  You can read about it here:

“Stay” Single Release by The Savage Poor

I mixed the song while on tour.  I got obsessed with mixing it.  I partied.  I mixed it some more.  Then I mixed it some more, even once I was happy with it.  After posting it when I got home, I realized that an earlier mix was superior.  It’s probably only details that dogs or people with an obsessive relationship with sound, yours truly included, could pick up.  But I do believe this new mix sounds better across all platforms.  (For those that get what I’m talking about, this version, when mastered, sounded better across all platforms and not just the headphones I had to mix on while touring.) This will now be the new official version.  I replaced the existing versions at all various points with this new and improved version.  If you liked the original mix I posted better, or want to hear 30 other mixes done in various states of mind, just ask.  So it is written, so shall it be done…

 

“Stay” Single Release by The Savage Poor

stay cover 1x

Download Now

(If you have trouble just click on the download now, then right click or tap to bring up options.  Select the download video option.)

Oh and before we go any further, if you are going to listen to the song on your computer, or your smart phone, please dear god use headphones or connect it to some decent speakers.  Even the Beatles sound like shite screeching through some tinny device speakers.  Modern life!  

My band The Savage Poor has just release the new single “Stay”.  For the music fan, I put credits and an image you can use as a digital cover down at the bottom.  Please feel free to share this song with as many people as you like.  It’s free!  My brother wrote this about it, as it was released on Labor Day, while I was out on tour:

In honor of Labor Day, The Savage Poor is sharing a new single called “Stay” at thesavagepoor.com. “Stay” was recorded at the band’s rehearsal space in Austin, TX and mixed remotely by Jeff Brown whilst visiting the Pacific Northwest. 

“Stay” is something of a rarity in the band’s current repertoire, as it deals explicitly with the complex, mosaic emotions of adult relationships–accentuated by imagery from the Fall of Man and the Garden of Eden. While many of the band’s current songs look outward to the problems, absurdities, and inequalities of the modern world, “Stay” looks ever inward. 

The song is an open-field tackle on the battlefield of internal struggle–wrapping one’s arms around another as an act of both fortification against and embrace of the unknowable abyss. 

I wanted to write a song for someone that means a lot to me, but I always keep in mind Larry David’s maxim to “Curb Your Enthusiasm”.  How many people really want to know how happy someone makes you?  I had to find an angle.

I wanted to cast love as the ultimate subversive act.  In a universe where all roads lead to oblivion, in a world of impermanence, what could be more defiant than choosing to give your heart over to something, to believe in everlasting love?  If not defying God, at least defying “the gods” in the Greek sense.  What was Prometheus punished for if not for bringing warmth and light to man?

I’ve always been fascinated with the Garden of Eden myth.  It can be a beautiful and poetic way of telling the story of childhood.  We grow up in the Garden, with the wonder of a child, to be cast out with a loss of innocence as we become adults.  At the same time, there is some absurd patriarchal shit going on in that story.  A woman was created out of a man’s rib?  Tell me some Stone Age motherfucker didn’t insert that so he could have a little more control of the household!

So I figured a retelling of that story would be the perfect vehicle for all of these ideas to come together.  Our story unfolds…

Stay

Eternity Dreamed
And then we awoke
In some beautiful, cosmic joke
With a hole in our hearts
But hearts all the same
Yearning to hear a lover’s name

Oh I know you’ll go
We all leave alone
But with you here today
Tomorrow fades away

Stay, while you can
You make it all seem part of some plan

We found fruit in the trees
Fish in the streams
We ran through the Garden unaware
We mapped out the stars
Named Venus and Mars
We found patterns when there were no patterns there

Oh I know you’ll go
We all leave alone
But with you here today
Tomorrow fades away

Stay, while you can
You make it all seem part of some plan

They say you came from my rib
Well, that’s just a fib
I could never create anything so beautiful
You took the apple from the tree
I hope your conscience is free
‘Cause I’d do it again and again and again and again

Stay, while you can
You make it all seem part of some plan

Credits:

Song performed, arranged, and produced by The Savage Poor

Ben Brown:  Electric lead and rhythm guitar, harmony vocal
Roger Wuthrich: bass
Alex Moralez: drums
Jeff Brown: Electric rhythm guitar, acoustic guitar, lead vocals, percussion, sound effects

Sleeve Concept Roger Wuthrich and Ben Brown
Sleeve Design and layout Roger Wuthrich

Song recorded and mixed by Jeff Brown

Song written by Jeff Brown
Copyright 2016
Publishing: End of Feel Good Music ASCAP

stay cover 1 album x

Thanks to my fellow band members and other musician friends for the great mixing advice while I was traveling!!!

Thoughtless Kind

A great song doesn’t have to be true all the time, or even true at all, but when it is playing it should feel as it came on a tablet down from the mountaintop.  John Cale has three recorded versions of this song on Music For a New Society/M:FANS.  I like the acoustic outtake the most out of the three versions, as it seems more desperate, more of the moment.  It seems like it is being written on the spot, the lyrics as true expression of the heart.  This song is truly lonesome, but completely unaffected.  It might cast a shadow across your day, but you’ll be glad you found it.  It’s real and true. How many things can you say that about?

Stay

Eternity dreamed
And then we awoke
In some beautiful cosmic joke
With a hole in our hearts
But with hearts all the same
Yearning to hear a lover’s name

Oh, I know you’ll go
We all leave alone
But with you here today
Tomorrow fades away

Stay, while you can
You make it all seem part of some plan

We found fruit in the trees
Fish in the streams
We ran through the Garden unaware
We mapped out the stars
Named Venus and Mars
We found patterns when there were no patterns there

Oh, I know you’ll go
We all leave alone
But with you here today
Tomorrow fades away

Stay, while you can
You make it all seem part of some plan

They say you came from my rib
But that’s just a fib
I could never create anything so beautiful
You took the apple from the tree
I hope your conscience is free
Cause I’d do it again and again and again and again

Stay, while you can
You make it all seem part of some plan

Lyrics to a song I wrote that my band, The Savage Poor, were working on today.  We’ll be at the Rattle Inn in Austin, Texas this week at 10pm.

Blood Orange and Cultural Appropriation

I enjoy pop music that has a subversive quality to it, especially when there is still an accessible melodicism to it.  The music that Blood Orange makes reminds me of the melodic genre bending soul of someone like Prince, but with the cold beauty of modern indie acts like Chromatics.

There is no doubt that there are a lot of homoerotic undertones in shots in this video.  I was reading with  Dev Hynes, the man behind Blood Orange, and he said this in an Interview article:

I find New York, early 80s gay culture so amazing—the ball culture, what they created, how they expressed themselves. I admire them endlessly for their bravery. I can’t even imagine how difficult it was to be young, black, and gay 30 years ago. When I was younger growing up in Essex—a small town in England—I dressed pretty weird, and a lot of my friends were gay, so I essentially grew up as a gay kid even though I was straight. I had all the abuse—was spat on daily, called a fag, was pushed around. The whole aesthetic of Blood Orange is basically a celebration of gay culture. I want to celebrate people who I feel represent freedom, for example Octavia St. Laurent, who I’ve done a little tribute to on the Myspace.

There are lots of talks in the media about culture appropriation concerning different artists.  As long as an artist admits who they are taking, and politically stands up for those that they are taking from, I think it is not only OK to take things from different cultures, but essential to art.  They only way that new genres are created is when two (or more) things are combined that were never combined before. Also, it can expose elements of different cultures to people that may not have been accepting to them otherwise.  There is no doubt, for instance, that the Rolling Stones helped lead people back to many black blues artists.  Morrissey steals lines from different writers, while putting them in a new context, and through him I have discovered and read those artists.

There are only three times when this becomes problematic:  When an artist steals without adding anything new (This would be, if not plagiarism, than unimaginative art.), when an artist steals without credit (straights up plagiarism), when an artist steals something from a culture without supporting that culture politically (hypocrisy).

The Pure Expression of the Cocteau Twins

There is nothing harder in pop songwriting than coming up with a great lyric.  It’s true, lyrics aren’t everything.  Great singers paired with the right melody can allow one to overlook an average lyric.  But nothing lasts longer in my stereo than a song with lyrics that are complex enough to allow the song to be reinterpreted over time.  I don’t necessarily mean complex like Dylan, although he obviously has written an unbelievable amount of great lyrics.  Something like Stand By Me is quite simple, but has a certain Biblical depth to it that seems bottomless.

But sometimes it is great to get away from lyrics and into pop songs that sound like pure expression.  No one does this better than the Cocteau Twins.  Not only is Robin Guthrie an exceptional guitar player, whose echoey sound can be seen as a precursor to many 90’s acts like My Bloody Valentine, but singer Elizabeth Fraser has one of the most expressive voices of all time.  The songs are drenched in reverb and delay, making it hard to tell at times if she is using words at all or singing in her own made up language.  (I think she does both, but which she is doing is often hard to tell.)  I’ve written about them before, but diving back into their music has made me think that they don’t get the amount of attention they deserve.  Although they share certain sonic characteristics with their peers, they are definitely unique.

There really isn’t better music to dream to, whether that is at night while falling asleep or on a long walk while daydreaming.  It’s like stepping into a strange sonic fairytale or a beautiful renaissance tapestry made out of sound.  Whether it is a clear and starry night or a rainy day trapped indoors, the music seems to fit.  Yet all of this is almost pointless.  It’s pure emotion captured in sound, and really defies easy description due to this.

All of their music is not the same.  They did start out very early on almost like a goth band before quickly finding their feet.  There were some later records that were less impressionistic.  But for the most part they were who they were.

Strangely enough singer Elizabeth Fraser has only released a couple songs since the demise of the band.  It’s almost like she was channeling the spirit and then woke up one day and realized her time had passed.  As a starting point I really love their collection Stars and Topsoil which covers their 1982-1990 period.  Many of their albums are worth owning, but fans debate as to which ones.  (Though Treasure seems to be loved by almost all.)  As far as getting your feet wet I think this not only demonstrates what made them unique, but is also highly accessible.

New Free Single Download – Stay – In Some Beautiful, Cosmic Joke

stay cover 1x

Download Now

(If you have trouble just click on the download now, then right click or tap to bring up options.  Select the download video option.)

Oh and before we go any further, if you are going to listen to the song on your computer, or your smart phone, please dear god use headphones or connect it to some decent speakers.  Even the Beatles sound like shite screeching through some tinny device speakers.  Modern life!  

My band The Savage Poor has just release the new single “Stay”.  For the music fan, I put credits and an image you can use as a digital cover down at the bottom.  Please feel free to share this song with as many people as you like.  It’s free!  My brother wrote this about it, as it was released on Labor Day, while I was out on tour:

In honor of Labor Day, The Savage Poor is sharing a new single called “Stay” at thesavagepoor.com. “Stay” was recorded at the band’s rehearsal space in Austin, TX and mixed remotely by Jeff Brown whilst visiting the Pacific Northwest. 

“Stay” is something of a rarity in the band’s current repertoire, as it deals explicitly with the complex, mosaic emotions of adult relationships–accentuated by imagery from the Fall of Man and the Garden of Eden. While many of the band’s current songs look outward to the problems, absurdities, and inequalities of the modern world, “Stay” looks ever inward. 

The song is an open-field tackle on the battlefield of internal struggle–wrapping one’s arms around another as an act of both fortification against and embrace of the unknowable abyss. 

I wanted to write a song for someone that means a lot to me, but I always keep in mind Larry David’s maxim to “Curb Your Enthusiasm”.  How many people really want to know how happy someone makes you?  I had to find an angle.

I wanted to cast love as the ultimate subversive act.  In a universe where all roads lead to oblivion, in a world of impermanence, what could be more defiant than choosing to give your heart over to something, to believe in everlasting love?  If not defying God, at least defying “the gods” in the Greek sense.  What was Prometheus punished for if not for bringing warmth and light to man?

I’ve always been fascinated with the Garden of Eden myth.  It can be a beautiful and poetic way of telling the story of childhood.  We grow up in the Garden, with the wonder of a child, to be cast out with a loss of innocence as we become adults.  At the same time, there is some absurd patriarchal shit going on in that story.  A woman was created out of a man’s rib?  Tell me some Stone Age motherfucker didn’t insert that so he could have a little more control of the household!

So I figured a retelling of that story would be the perfect vehicle for all of these ideas to come together.  Our story unfolds…

Stay

Eternity Dreamed
And then we awoke
In some beautiful, cosmic joke
With a hole in our hearts
But hearts all the same
Yearning to hear a lover’s name

Oh I know you’ll go
We all leave alone
But with you here today
Tomorrow fades away

Stay, while you can
You make it all seem part of some plan

We found fruit in the trees
Fish in the streams
We ran through the Garden unaware
We mapped out the stars
Named Venus and Mars
We found patterns when there were no patterns there

Oh I know you’ll go
We all leave alone
But with you here today
Tomorrow fades away

Stay, while you can
You make it all seem part of some plan

They say you came from my rib
Well, that’s just a fib
I could never create anything so beautiful
You took the apple from the tree
I hope your conscience is free
‘Cause I’d do it again and again and again and again

Stay, while you can
You make it all seem part of some plan

Credits:

Song performed, arranged, and produced by The Savage Poor

Ben Brown:  Electric lead and rhythm guitar, harmony vocal
Roger Wuthrich: bass
Alex Moralez: drums
Jeff Brown: Electric rhythm guitar, acoustic guitar, lead vocals, percussion, sound effects

Sleeve Concept Roger Wuthrich and Ben Brown
Sleeve Design and layout Roger Wuthrich

Song recorded and mixed by Jeff Brown

Song written by Jeff Brown
Copyright 2016
Publishing: End of Feel Good Music ASCAP

stay cover 1 album x

Thanks to my fellow band members and other musician friends for the great mixing advice while I was traveling!!!

 

My New Band, The Savage Poor, at the Saxon Pub Tomorrow Night

Savage Poor Saxon

My new band The Savage Poor will be playing the Saxon Pub tomorrow night, June 5th, in Austin, Texas at 10pm.  The band consists of myself, my brother Ben Brown, drummer Alex Moralez, and bassist Roger Wuthrich.  This is without question a rock n roll band, but like the Clash rock n roll is more the attitude in which we approach a stylistically diverse set of songs.

Sunday night is a tough sell, but feeling good on Monday morning is overrated.  Join us and take joy in the fact that you will be able to freak out your coworkers Monday morning when you look like you have been to space and back.

We will not “just shut up and sing”.  We will make you think and question all while shaking your hips.  So many forget, but rock n roll is meant to be a subversive cultural force.  It just happens it is one that you can party, celebrate, and sweat during as you have your mind expanded.

Listen to our latest single and B-side here to get two of the many shades of our color palette:

Everyday American Thoughts – New Single Release