Front cover, Dave Graney, alone, on a beach
in far north western australia.
Below is a track by track , blow by blow account of the whats and
whys and wheretofores and whynots and indubitablys of Keepin it unreal.
you put a spell on me
This song was written with Matt Walker. He did the music and I did the
words. It was recorded for his 2000 cd "soul witness". It was
also recorded by country singer Jimmy Little. vengeance is on its way (dont worry)
This is a favourite tune from Kiss tomorrow goodbye. A very dark but very
melodic and keyboard driven album. The lyric is mean. The tune is super
sweet. For those of a literary bent, it includes a line from a poem by
Lord Rochester. (see the recent film of him starring
Johnny Depp, the Libertine) diamonds fur coat champagne (suicide)
Alan Vega from Suicide was one of the biggest influences on me back when
I started singing. He had everything I wanted. Words came easy and tripped
out of his mouth like everyday language. He was possessed and remote all
at once. biker in business class
On the last album we did with/as the Coral Snakes in 1997, we recorded
this track with Frank Bennet ( Dave Wray) singing/talking the song. He
was and is a Sinatra act/performer (and superb). We wanted that exhausted
late 60s feel that was in movies like "suddenly" and those macho
Tony Rome movies. Its a great groove to play live and now I like to sing
it myself. Lt colonel,cavalry This song is a bit of an epic in its reach. I love the chords. An
attempt at a song that Jimmy Webb would have had on "the yard goes
on forever". The lyric is pretty true. It was on the album we did
for Festival in 1999. Unavailable now. I wanted another tilt at it. Don
quixote style, yeah? a lot to drink about
Clare did this on her last album "liquor" in a very swinging
big band arrangement. Lots of driving horns and twin guitars and herself
riding behind and through it all from her command vehicle, the drum kit.
Here its taken as an acoustic blues. Stu D ecxels on his bass solo-ing!
(Its the 6 string that sounds like an electric guitar. The bass part
is the 12 string) the stuff that night is made of
This was on Kiss tomorrow goodbye as well. It has such a charge and gains
a lot from the vibes and the bass. In its earlier incarnation, it was
all keyboard derived and driven. Its what we would call Europop in flavour
,I guess. The chords aren't shifting in the 12 bar scheme. Just the 1
to the 4 and not the 5 if you get my drift. Why that makes it European
I do not know. Trust me. anchors aweigh
Recorded earlier on Heroic Blues. I've always found it a real challenge
to play. The chords are odd and shifty . The lyric was inspired by the
death of a couple of friends around the same time period. When people
go they take bits of you with them. The whole song is slippery. I was
listening to the chordal variations on Marvin Gayes "whats goin'
on" when I wrote it. That great middle 8 that song has. Sounded great
with the vibes and with Stu D and Clare harmonizing. there was a time
This was a song from our 1994 album "you wanna be there but you don't
wanna travel". Its a bit of a mystery to me where it came from, musically.
Very major chord driven as opposed to the usual emotionally suspended
inversions I'm drawn to. Lyrically its the street where I grew up and
all the working guys around the place. everybody's gone (from somewhere)
This was on "Hashish". I just wanted to do it with a totally
acoustic feel. Its like a country song, but not quite. the chords must
be too high falutin. Its a rare song of mine that has such a brief and
precise lyric. parchman farm (mose allison)
Clare has always done a great, lowdown and husky take on this track. Shes
mean. She means it. Here she uses the dampened vibes so they get that
chain gang hammered sound. Stu D pulses through it with his dampened bass.
Clare brings out the melodica on the tailout. am I wearing something of yours?
A song that came from that 1999 album we did for Festival. A painful time.
We loved making that record and it got lost in a building somewhere. The
lyric comes from some teenage taunt/ challenge. A whole lot of 'em actually.
The music is dreamy and pretty. lets live properly (like were stoned)
A song that was recorded for "hashish". It got another life
and grew legs as we played it more and more in different setups. The chords
in the chorus are great to sing to and it took a hundred shows to bring
me through it properly. Lyrically its another song inspired by a Terry
Southern story ( as was "you're just too hip,baby"). Its a Springsteen-esque
call to arms for a world of dopers to clean up the world and act straight/human.
a million dollars in a red velvet suit
A song I wrote in the late 80s and recorded in 1990. It came out on an
album called "I was the hunter and I was the prey" in 1992.
Its full of gags and sensation. In a way, a kind of bragging blues song
that protests "I'm never gonna sing the blues for you!". In
the middle 8, I kick a goal, while looking the other way. The crowd looks
to see what I'm looking at, and don't see the ball go through. who of us two? (M)
A translation of the French hit "qui des nous deux" by M. It
was a great song and we loved the whole melody. When I translated it I
realized it was a song about music and an artist talking of and to his
guitar. His instrument. So close to something i could have written myself.
It seemed like a glam rock tune. I'm playing a Canora Flying V and a Bronco
bass and Clare is rocking with her Gretsch kit.