New song: "Ghost Dance"

Posted by: Skyline

New song: "Ghost Dance" - 10/02/12 01:15 PM

I recently finished reading 'A History of the Indians of the United States' and it inspired me to read more about what actually happened at Wounded Knee. I know others have written songs about it, e.g. Buffy St Marie, but this is my attempt at describing the tragedy.

I used some BIAB rhythm guitar tracks extracted from styles _ELCO120, _HRKCSP1 and _POPAMER mixed with tracks from a 'My Co-Writer' CD. All lead guitar parts and vocals are myself.

MP3 here: "Ghost Dance".
Lyrics and notes here.
Posted by: floyd jane

Re: New song: "Ghost Dance" - 10/02/12 01:28 PM

Wow! This is great! Everything about it. The opening is terrific. Great feel throughout. The mix. The lyrics. The vocal. Great. The guitar work - especially the dual guitars - sweet. Loved it. Great job!
Posted by: Janice & Bud

Re: New song: "Ghost Dance" - 10/02/12 02:51 PM

Nice. I've read Native American history for years and have a pretty good appreciation and understanding of the ghost dance. You captured the vibe very well.
Posted by: SpaceDog

Re: New song: "Ghost Dance" - 10/02/12 03:51 PM

Sounds great. Excellent song. I was too young to remember Wounded Knee but you've motivated me to do some research. The essence of music is communication. Well done and thanks.

Posted by: Noel96

Re: New song: "Ghost Dance" - 10/02/12 05:30 PM

Hi John,

Outstanding! The mood-setting setting (pre)intro was brilliant; a perfect lead-in for the guitars. It pulled me into the song instantly. I also really liked the 3-phrase chorus that didn't end on the tonic. The lack of musical and lyrical balance in this chorus was a terrific magnifier of emotional content. As I was listening to this, Pat Pattison's voice popped into my head saying "Motion creates emotion". Your chorus is a terrific example of that principle.

All in all, your song is a fantastic listen. Lyrics, music, arrangement, performance; from top to bottom, this shines with competence.

All the best,
Posted by: Steve Young

Re: New song: "Ghost Dance" - 10/02/12 08:52 PM


Stunning performance here! You know I am a fan of your work, and this one certainly does not disappoint. First class all the way, my friend!

Posted by: Sundance

Re: New song: "Ghost Dance" - 10/02/12 09:47 PM

+1 to the above.

This is super John! From the song itself to the sound of the guitars to the vox to the rocking rhythm track to the's spot on. What a great sound.

And I loved the guitar echoing the earlier vox at the end of the chorus - one of many very cool touches in the arrangement.
Posted by: 90 dB

Re: New song: "Ghost Dance" - 10/04/12 12:51 PM


Outstanding. Especially liked the intro/outro.


Posted by: Tommyc

Re: New song: "Ghost Dance" - 10/05/12 12:30 PM

Wow very Cool Song John, Great job of mixing and Guitar picking! Killer Guitar Tone too!
Posted by: BruceI

Re: New song: "Ghost Dance" - 10/06/12 10:08 AM

I love this! Great song and arrangement. Guitar tone and playing are sweet, especially the harmony playing. The Indian flutes on the intro and outro are haunting and well blended in the arrangement.

Thanks for sharing,
Posted by: Pat Marr

Re: New song: "Ghost Dance" - 10/06/12 10:49 AM

I liked the song, and I liked the intro... but it seemed disjointed the way it (the intro) did not persist in any way throughout the song as a motif. I think the song would have lent more impact to the topic if it were presented totally from the victim's POV... including music style.

Instead, it sounded like Tom Petty writing a protest song on behalf of somebody who was too disinterested to do it for himself.

Having said that, I like Tom Petty and the song. The guitar harmonies were very good as usual for you. You are a real craftsman when it comes to music making. I don't think you've ever presented a song on the forum that wasn't quite good.

The small criticism above is less about the quality of your music than it is my personal preference
Posted by: Skyline

Re: New song: "Ghost Dance" - 10/06/12 11:46 AM

Thank you all for your kind comments, it makes the toil all the more worthwhile!
This was an important song to me and it took a long time to craft the lyrics, as there's no such thing a poet's licence when dealing with real events and people, especially tragic ones like this.

Pat, I wrote it from the POV of the Lakota, hence the 'our', 'we', 'us', etc??. I didn't have the skills or instruments to go for a full-on ethnic music route! Actually I had a Tom Petty feel in mind when doing it, so that worked!

Here's an accompanying video I just completed, which includes contemporary photographs of the aftermath:
"Ghost Dance" video - 720HD
"Ghost Dance" video - 1080HD full screen
Posted by: F.M.M.

Re: New song: "Ghost Dance" - 10/09/12 08:56 PM

hi skyline great production everything top notch lyrics all of it good stuff thanks eric