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Saturday, 19 February 2011

Song Number 6: Boiling Strings For Jesus

Ok, there's a story behind this one - bear with me.



I actually planned to put a totally different song up tonight, but at the last minute I decided I wanted to do a completely different vocal arrangement.  However, my resident female vocalist (Mrs F) is out tonight, which has left me unable to carry on with that song at present.

So I thought I'd see what I could do in an evening.  I hadn't done anything major with the acoustic guitar due to a) the guitar having five manky strings; and b) my guitar playing being generally awful.

I grabbed a set of strings off the shelf, and made a start on re-stringing the guitar.  Two strings in, I realised the set was (for some reason) short of a G string, so I had to take the G string off the set I was replacing and boil it.  For those of you who don't know, the life of an old guitar string can sometimes be extended slightly by boiling the string in water (and a bit of vinegar, if you like), which removes a lot of the build-up of dead skin, dust and sweaty mush. 

While watching over the stove, the phrase "Boiling Strings For Jesus" popped into my head.  Which of course left me wondering who would do such a thing.  The answer, of course, was an old Pastor, nearing the end of his life, wanting to dust off his old guitar and play just one last song for the man upstairs.  I don't believe in God, myself, but I thought it was quite a sweet image.

Despite the comedy accent, I'm not taking the mickey out of anybody, nor am I trying to make any kind of a point - it's just a song*.  And writing it was quite interesting:  straightforward chords; simple structure and rhyme scheme...  It's nothing clever, but it was good to just pound out a song in a couple of hours.  The question is - how simple can I make my songs from here on without them sounding too formulaic.

AND NOW, FOLKS - it's time to chuck a bob in the ol' JustGiving account up there on the top right!  Tell your friends and family, too - who knows what the next song's going to be like!  Songaweek2011 - it's a riot!


* Great tradition of comedy songs in Country music, though with as with a lot of comedy numbers the titles are often funnier in isolation:

"How can I miss you when you won't go away?"
"If the phone doesn't ring, you'll know it's me"
"I’m sorry I made you cry, but at least your face is cleaner"
"If my nose was running money, I’d blow it all on you"

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