New Song: "Jamaican Moon"

Posted by: Noel96

New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 01:25 AM

Hi all,

A little earlier this year, I put together an internet forum for myself and a few friends to work through Andrea Stolpe's book, Popular Lyric Writing: 10 Steps To Effective Storytelling. It's one of my top three favourite songwriting books and uniquely unlike any other songwriting book on the market. The four week long writing challenge proved to be very productive all of us. This is one of the songs I wrote using only her principles.

... Jamaican Moon (on Vimeo)


Please feel free to comment on any aspect of the song: words, music, arrangement, mix, etc.

The song is all Realtracks, Realdrums and me singing. It was written in BIAB, had instruments adjusted in RB and finally mixed in Reaper.

Best regards,
Noel

P.S. If anyone is interested, below is a link to Andrea's book at the Book Depository.

... link to Andrea's book

<span style="color:green">BAND IN BOX INFORMATION<!--color--></span>

Style: _JFNKPOP.STY (JazzFunkPoppyRhythmSectn [110RS])

RealTracks: 1434:Bass, Electric, JazzFunkPoppy Ev16 110
RealTracks: 1639:Piano, Electric, Rhythm JazzFunkBreezy Ev16 075
RealTracks: 1637:Guitar, Electric, Rhythm JazzFunkBreezyChords Ev16 075
RealTracks: 1638:Guitar, Electric, Rhythm JazzFunkBreezyMuted Ev16 075

RealDrums: BossaRockFull^1-a:HiHat , b:Ride
Posted by: George Nelson

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 06:39 AM

Hi Noel,

Could you please insert the Lyrics for this song so that we may learn from you.

I like the Caribbean sound of your song.

Best regards
George
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 07:39 AM

Hi George,

Thank you for having listen! As soon as I get a chance, I'll do a bit of analysis on my lyrics and post them so that you and others can see how I went about things. That won't be for a little while, though, because I'm drowning in work right at this point in time.

All the best,
Noel

P.S. I've just sent you a private message, too.
Posted by: boehm

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 09:09 AM

Very relaxed and enjoyable listening.
You used my favourite RealTracks. They mix nicely
with the Bossa drums.

Guenter
Posted by: floyd jane

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 09:52 AM

Noel - what a wonderful "sound" on this. the tracks are great. your vocals are quite nice and the harmonies are a delight. excellent mix. enjoyed listening. great job.
Posted by: Tommyc

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 10:00 AM

Great Job! I love how the drums completely change the mood of the Funk tracks! Love the lyrics too!
Posted by: musiclover

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 10:57 AM

Very nice Noel, I love the upbeat intro, everything lyrics melody and video mix well together, as regards the video you couldn't have chosen better pics to use.

I like the way you go about your songwriting reading books on how to do it etc, and have saved a few of your posts on this in answer to Don Gaynor I believe.

What video software do you use Noel? I find that its one of the things I spend less time on as I use Muvee reveal, just add the pics and title and it does it all for me.


All the best,
Musiclover
Posted by: MarioD

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 02:32 PM

Jamaican me happy with this one man

You almost captured the Caribbean feel here. I say almost because the only thing missing were the steel drums. But even without them this is a keeper.
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 05:30 PM

Hi Guenter,

Thank you. I appreciate your giving me some of your time to have listen.

By the way, I've come to this post from just having listened to your latest (for the young at heart). It's yet another creative creation from you. I thoroughly enjoy your music.

All the best,
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 05:33 PM

Hi Floyd,

Thanks for the positive feedback! I'd like to say that I did all my own harmonies but I can't. I'm lazy. My good friend TC Helicon in RB did those for me. Got to hand it to him, he's a talented bit of software.

All the best,
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 05:36 PM

Hi Tommy,

Thanks! The minute I heard the bossanova feel with the tracks I had, the mix fell into place. It's amazing how sometimes a single instrument can change the whole vibe of an arrangement!

All the best,
Noel
Posted by: seeker

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 05:52 PM

Noel,

This is second time I'm trying to comment,
Must have had the 'ole' brain f... and not completed post.

I really enjoyed your music, the vocals albeit emphasized
so nicely in several places, reflect a casual Caribbean feel.

Enjoyed the video aspects also, gives it the extra touch.

Thanks for sharing with us.
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 05:53 PM

Hi musiclover,

I appreciate your complimentary words. Thank you

Five or six years ago, I had no idea, whatsoever, how one writes lyrics. Melody and harmony were fine, but creating a satisfying lyrical journey to accompany my music completely eluded me. I started reading. Today I must have about 30 or more songwriting books (I've never counted them). I also started attending songwriting seminars. At last, I think it's starting to come together for me!

If it is of any use to you, the most valuable books in my library (and they're ones I keep re-reading over and over again) are the following.
  • Pat Pattison, Songwriting: Essential Guide to Lyric Form and Structure
  • Pat Pattison, Songwriting: Essential Guide to Rhyming
  • Pat Pattison, Writing Better Lyrics (2nd Ed.) (I couldn't be without this one!)
  • Andrea Stolpe, Popular Lyric Writing: 10 Steps to Effective Storytelling

    And to help me appreciate many of the subtleties in music (in relation to chord progressions, etc.) ...

  • Jai Josefs , Writing Music for Hit Songs

In my opinion, the above books are the only ones anyone needs. They are unique on the songwriting market and I find them invaluable. I worked through every exercise in each book! It was amazing what came from doing that.

Also, if you go to Pat Pattison' Homepage, you'll find a great deal of useful information under the links called "Lyric Tips" and "Videos".

For what it's worth, I usually buy my books through the BookDepository because the prices are good and they have free, worldwide delivery.

Regarding the videos: when I use still images, I assemble the video in Windows Live Movie Make (it's free and it has lots of great transition effects). When I put a movie together I use OpenShot Video Editor in Linux. It's opensource and, unlike Movie Maker, has multiple tracks. These allow me to blend images and movie clips.

All the best with your writing,
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 06:01 PM

G'day Mario,

Thanks for the smile you've just given me

Would you believe it, I was so caught up in finding the right Realtracks and Realdrums that I didn't even think of steel drums!!!!! And I love steel drums! I guess my aging brain can only deal with a limited amount of things at any one time. I might go back and had a fiddle with some steel drums when I get a bit of time. Thank you for bringing those to my attention.

All the best,
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/24/12 06:13 PM

Hi Frank!

I've got a brain like that too so I fully sympathise. Thank you for having a listen and for the uplifting comments I appreciate it.

All the best,
Noel
Posted by: Danny C.

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/25/12 09:39 PM

Quote:

Jamaican me happy with this one man

You almost captured the Caribbean feel here. I say almost because the only thing missing were the steel drums. But even without them this is a keeper.




Really like this one also. My only issue is not with the song but because I think I am hearing everything Mario hears. Too often I am thinking what he just wrote.

Very cool song . . . now stop it Mario!

Later,
Posted by: Sundance

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/25/12 11:34 PM

Great sounding track Noel, I love the harmonies too. I gotta go with Mario and Danny on the steel drums..... I'm gonna go put that on the wishlist for real tracks - wouldn't it be great to have REAL steel drums....
Posted by: Tano Music

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/26/12 08:32 AM

Noel, very "restful" in that caribbean kind of way! THe lyric "fits" the overall sense of the music. And I like how the vocal harmony was done just in the right place, the right way, to emphasize those lines.

I'll add my vote to the steel drum idea.

And a very cool video to boot!

Thanks for the info on the books as well.
Posted by: JoanneCooper

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/28/12 02:17 AM

Very Nice Noel and thanks for all your tips on songwriting books. I am definitely going to be getting a few of those. I have just finished an 8 week songwriting course. I didn’t learn too much about melody or chord structure etc but I did learn some good tips about lyrics. The most important one for me was learning to cut out all the excess words! My songs were all far too wordy!
Posted by: jptjptjpt

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/28/12 10:39 PM

Very sweet song. Well written. The book must be paying off. Great use of BIAB. Neat video too.
Posted by: Pat Marr

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/29/12 06:15 AM

I was waiting for Sebastian the crab to start singing backing vocals in his inimitable "Undah da sea" voice

Rather than reiterate what everybody else has said, I'll just agree and add "Excellent job, as usual Noel!"

You must have done it on purpose because its something I listen for and rarely hear in songs that are all real tracks... but there was a recurring guitar lick at the same place in every section. Touches like that give a personalized and signature quality to a song.
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/30/12 04:54 AM

Hi Danny,

Thank you for taking time to listen and to comment. I think Mario has that effect on people I have to confess that there has been a few times over the years when I've suddenly found myself quoting him too!

Once again, thanks!
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/30/12 04:58 AM

Hi Josie (Sundance),

Thank you! I reckon some accompaniment steel drums would be brilliant! They are amazing instruments.

By the way, I keep on popping back into your thread and listening to 'Girl it's Gone'. It's such a good song! Ten listens just aren't enough!

All the best
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/30/12 04:59 AM

Hi Tano,

I appreciate your time and your thoughts. Thank you for the positive feedback.

All the best,
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/30/12 05:03 AM

Hi Josie (jo131),

If I had to narrow it down to the three books that I continue to use regularly, they are ...
  • Pat Pattison, Songwriting: Essential Guide to Lyric Form and Structure
  • Pat Pattison, Writing Better Lyrics (2nd Ed.)
  • Andrea Stolpe, Popular Lyric Writing: 10 Steps to Effective Storytelling

Thank you for dropping in and having a listen. I appreciate it!

All the best,
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/30/12 05:04 AM

Hey jpt,

Yes indeed! The books have really helped me. It's been a great journey.

Thank you for the feedback!
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/30/12 05:12 AM

Hi Pat,

Great to see you Thank you for dropping by.

I'm glad you noticed the guitar licks. A long long time ago, I heard Neil Sedaka talking about his days of songwriting at Brill House. In the interview, he mentioned how he was always encouraged to look for ways to add as many hooks as possible to a song - instrumentally and lyrically. For some reason, his comments popped into my brain recently and so I started playing around with Realtracks and looking for hooky sections in my (re)generation of the tracks. When I came across something I liked and that had a bit of a hooky feel to me, I looked at where else I might be able to copy it to in the mix. You're a sharp observer Pat!!! Not much slips past you.

All the best,
Noel
Posted by: Pat Marr

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/30/12 07:13 AM

Quote:

You're a sharp observer Pat!!! Not much slips past you.



I wish that were true. The reality is that I'm one of those people who has to look at his driver's license if somebody asks for my middle name.



But I can tell a good song when I hear one, and I always hear one from you!
Posted by: PgFantastic

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 11/30/12 11:13 AM

Fine craftsmanship! Stong lyrics and the melody is perfect. Thanks for sharing!




My Music Reverbnation
My Music Soundcloud
My Web Page
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 12/01/12 06:48 AM

Hi Pat,

Quote:

The reality is that I'm one of those people who has to look at his driver's license if somebody asks for my middle name




I don't believe a word of it!

All the best,
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 12/01/12 06:50 AM

Hi Robert!

Thank you for your positive words. You've just given me a smile.

All the best,
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 12/01/12 07:00 AM

Dear all,

George Nelson, in the first post in this thread, asked me to include my lyrics with my post so that he could analyse them. At the time, I said that I'd post an analysis of my work and explain a little more about how I went about writing the song.

If anyone is interested, below is a link to a pdf file that gives a fairly detailed explanation how I went about doing things. Be warned that it's 8 pages long!

... link to pdf file (right-click and 'save as')

Please note that these are my thoughts and my interpretation of Andrea Stolpe's approach. I find her principles brilliant and very effective, and I thought others might like to know some more about her way of approaching songs.

Regards,
Noel
Posted by: George Nelson

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 12/01/12 08:49 AM

Hi Noel,

Thank you for your help with the lyrics.
I'm sure others can learn from them too.

George
Posted by: Steve Young

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 12/03/12 12:49 PM

Noel,

Another very well written effort here! You just keep getting better all the time! I do also agree with Mario and Josie about the steel drums. Really enjoyed it.

Steve
Posted by: dcuny

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 12/03/12 03:36 PM

I like how the song gets right down to business. The first verse wastes no time describing the scene, and then you move to the chorus. Like everyone else, I'm wondering where the steel drums are, although that would change the feel of the song quite a bit.

(Quickly double checking to make sure you're asking for "any sort" of feedback...)

But...

For me, the song lacks a strong emotional hook. Of all people, you know how tricky this sort of song is to pull off. You're writing about a location, and even though you've deftly written into the song emotional touchstones, it's not as compelling as a "relationship" sort of song, which has much of the drama built into it.

So instead of getting emotionally involved, I ended up paying more attention to all the details. All well crafted, and solidly done... but the song didn't suck me into the story.

And that's OK - there's certainly a place for that sort of song. I'm not really a failing on your part, but perhaps more the nature of this sort of song.

Anyway, nicely done.
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 12/08/12 07:52 AM

Hi George,

No problem. Hope it's useful. I found that once I got the hang of Stople's approach, it was a very productive way of writing lyrics.

All the best,
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 12/08/12 08:34 AM

Hi Steve,

Thanks for taking the time to have a listen. I appreciate the positive feedback.

All the best,
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 12/08/12 08:37 AM

Hi David,

I appreciate the fact that you set aside time to listen and to give me some comprehensive feedback. I agree with all you've said regarding writing about a place.

Thanks for dropping by

Regards,
Noel
Posted by: MikeK

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 12/08/12 10:47 AM

Hi Noel,

I really like this tune and the video was a nice compliment to this overall very enjoyable tune.

Great job, Sir!

Cheers,
Mike
Posted by: Skyline

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 12/08/12 11:16 AM

A stunning job Noel. I loved the sounds on this as well as the video.


John
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 12/13/12 05:42 AM

Hi Mike,

Thanks! Glad you enjoyed what I put together. I've always like playing around with BIAB. Now I'm discovering that I also like playing around with making slideshows and movies. There's just not enough hours in the day!

All the best,
Noel
Posted by: Noel96

Re: New Song: "Jamaican Moon" - 12/13/12 05:44 AM

Hi John,

I appreciate your comments. Thank you. Luck was on my side when I put this one together. That always helps!

It must be time for another of your works!

All the best,
Noel