Saturday, May 4, 2013

Meanings behind The Vanilla Milkshakes songs

1: We Sound Shitty so Spin will like us
            Inspired by listening to a lot of Dressy Bessy and the Thermals at the time, this song came to me instantly. Both bands recorded with a four track recorder and because I was privy to one at the time, I just played a simple chord progression and kept repeating the pattern. The chorus was me just stating the obvious.

2: Cookie Monster
            I know (or knew?) this guy named Ian Cooke. He was technically my first boyfriend I think and I sort of blew it by still being closeted. I love him and his music. He plays the Cello and sings as either the Ian Cooke band or solo as Ian Cooke. This song is basically me saying that he’s so awesome that it confounds me as to why he ever even hung out with me in the first place. The chorus was a play on my imperfect pitch. When I sing “You seem to have perfect pitch and I’m never on” I tried going out of tune as to make fun of the line.
            I wrote this song on the spot when we recorded at Brian’s Uneven Studio. Anyone who knows me can say that I just sing what comes to mind. Ian came to mind so I made the song about him. It was the first song Fez and I recorded for the album so it gave me sort of an idea as to what the album’s over all theme was going to be. Technically the album has ten songs but seven songs are really about people I know.

3: Sara T
            This song is about one of my favorite people. DJ and entrepreneur, Sara T was the first scene person I met when I first came to Colorado. I saw her band “Hot House” play before the Thermals and I immediately took notice about them. Then the Hot IQ’s played a set before the main attraction came out and I started to get a migraine headache. I was still underage then so I wasn’t allowed to go to the drinking area and such, so I suffered through most of the night. Sara came up to me when I started sitting down on the floor and putting my hands on my eyes to give them some pressure. Anyways, Sara asked me if I was alright and I said no. She then said that she would see me in a few minutes. I didn’t know what she was doing but when she came back she offered me a ride home. The Thermals were into their fourth or fifth song when we left. She bought me some dinner at Denny’s and I think just being around someone nice for a change really soothed my headache.
            She used to run a store on South Broadway called “Chielle” (I really hope I spelled that right?) Her two co-owners were Wendy Marlow and Alisa Dowel. So, like in the song, Alisa would let me into the store and Wendy would make me tea. Sometimes I’d fall on the floor and, look! It’s Sara T!
            The drug references in the chorus were just me saying things I’ve done to cure my headaches from time to time. Thank goodness I don’t get them like that anymore.
            The last part about Rob liking music AND Sara T was just me joking about his obvious crush on her. So… Yeah. Good stuff.
            The very end where all the noise is was me finishing with Fez and then going up to the amp and I turned the reverb all the way up. I played the strings across from the guitar nut (where the strings connect to the tuners) and started plucking.

4: Alan (You’re Out of the Band)
            This song is really in four parts. The verses are about the first girl I ever was “with” and about our awesome night together. The pre-chorus is about this girl who worked at a theater I frequented and mentions her in that she is a worry wart. At least that’s how she came off at the time. The chorus is about how this guy Alan from the Photo Atlas said he’d drum for me but he never did. So I fired him via song. He got the joke thankfully so it was all cool.
            The no future thing was just me saying what first came to mind, which happened to be the Sex Pistols. Because I’ll be dammed if I would ever think about my lyrics before singing them!
            The beginning “wha hup!” was actually a tape error in one of the other takes from a different song. It was too good to throw away so we added it to the beginning of the song. The ending noise came from the previous take we did and it was a little longer than the second take. So it ends where the first song ends.

5: Sorry Desi
            One of the worst things in my life had to do with getting drunk and slapping / punching (I don’t remember which…) this girl and all around great person, Desiree. I basically drank way too much and she said something mean to me, which now I’m sure wasn’t intentional, and then batted at her. I feel really shitty about it even to this day. I thought that instead of doing something like a letter or send flowers, I wrote a song for her. It’s really cool too because this was the one song that got some good radio play.
            This one also has my favorite intro to any of the songs I’ve written. Brian hit the record button on the eight track just as Fernando started up his beat. So it has a cool warp sounding thing in the beginning.
            The theatre part was just me making up something memorable that I could sing when playing. I am so bad at forgetting lyrics so I basically just repeated myself, only with different days of the week.
            The chorus was me singing about how nothing could take away the guilt. Then the bridge officially tells her that I am sorry. Although it’s along with another list of names, but the song is for her.

6: The Pessimist
            This one is basically about me being sad all the time. The chorus is almost a suicide letter I think.
            I had Fez do four drum clicks before the song started so I could sing the opening part on cue. The last chorus is me trying to sing an octave higher and I totally bombed it. I tried it twice but instead of cutting it altogether, we just distorted it and I screamed the rest. It really took Brian back because I can seamlessly scream and transition to softer vocals without even a hitch. It is always cool too because many people I’ve talked to say I can scream on key. Whatever that means… But it’s cool nonetheless.

7: Vampires
            Honestly this was a joke song that became popular during the live shows. It’s fun to play and such but it doesn’t really hold my attention. I had recorded a demo of this song and basically just redid it with better drums and recording. I even did the last part on both songs where I go “we did it!”

8: Yr Scene
            I won’t say who this is about. But I’m sure he knows he’s the brunt of the song. Yr Scene is about a scenester who has a lot of control and influence on the scene and he’s being a dick about it. It’s been so long now that I’m sure even he has realized that he wasn’t being nice to anyone and has hopefully started acting appreciative of the people who put him there.
            He had a label that had three of the biggest bands in Denver on its roster. To be honest, I wanted to be on his label but I wasn’t and never will be cool enough for him to notice me in that way. Later the label failed but for that little while he owned the scene.

9: Rich Kid
            I wrote this song a loooooong time ago, before I ever even had singing lessons. It originally started on a “B” chord but when I learned how to sing I figured that was too low to comfortably sing. I wanted it to be fast and energetic so I switched it up to a high “E”.
            For the most part the song is about this girl I met online. I was a totally creepy nerd back then and I didn’t really have the social skills to handle someone mean like her. I guess I’m to blame too seeing as I tried calling her a hundred times… For that I’m sorry. But nonetheless the song is about her and her being mean to me. The pinnacle of our relationship came when she was playing bass guitar for the Patrick Porter band. They had a little gig at a coffee shop and I totally spoiled the show for everyone. I didn’t know I did that when I did it but looking back now I feel, yet again, really bad for it. Stuff like me taking Patrick’s guitar and trying to play and sing. I was always out of key back then so I’m sure it was horrible for those around me. Plus I was just always talking and wouldn’t shut up…
            The title Rich Kid came from back when I was in high school. I lived in a rundown trailer while the rest of the town was living in McMansions. It always hurt me because I’d be made fun of all the time for having just “one” car in my family. There was this handsome guy who drove a truck and he said he paid for it all with his part time coffee shop job. I knew he would never be able to afford a brand new vehicle working there so I called him out on it.
            Maybe that girl was from a rich family too? Meh…

10: Chai
            This song was always intended as a solo song with just me and a guitar. To be honest though I probably would have added drums if Fernando hadn’t left so early in the recording process. But I think it works out alright. Brian was sort of making fun of me or something, I don’t know… I was pretty drunk by the time I did vocals and I think I was crying throughout singing it.
            The song is about how the scene can be your friend and enemy at the same time. “I will die along / dressed in smoke” came from how the bars here in Denver used to allow smoking in their facilities. Not anymore though, which is good because I need to quit smoking.
            The song is sort of like a anti love letter to some of the people in the “scene.” I just never really felt welcome. This song is about not fitting in. Although it would of sounded a lot better with drums I think it does the trick with me solo. At least I hope it does?
            I suppose it’s up to you to decide.

11: One More Song
            My favorite all time local band was called “The Symptoms.” They broke up just as they were writing amazing songs due to inter-band conflict. The bassist wound up going into The Overcasters while the singer / guitarist and drummer went on to form Lion Sized.
            My favorite song by them was a song called “Yr Cool” and they didn’t even play it at their last show, which was disappointing.
            I wrote the song pretty much on the spot but I had the chorus from an earlier song. Well, just the chorus chords and melody, the final lyrics are just what I randomly sang into the microphone. It’s my favorite song on the record and it was just so much fun to play. It still is the song that I end shows with, of course with a sense of irony.
            This song is the only one with two overdubs aside from the music that the guitar and drums played. I think Sorry Desi also had one extra overdub when I clapped the sides of my legs along with my handclaps on the main vocal track.

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