IF THE DEVIL DANCED IN EMPTY POCKETS, HE'D HAVE A BALL IN MINE - 2009
THE STORY BEHIND IT ALL
My Own Parody , The Recording of The CD & The Video On YouTube
For a guy who grew up listening to and learning from the likes of Jonathan Winters, Ernie Kovacs, Eddie Lawrence (The Old Philosopher) and most importantly from a musical standpoint, Homer & Jethro ( I still have a pristine copy of Homer & Jethro Live at The Country Club ) writing If The Devil Danced In Empty Pockets with Kim Williams back in 1989 was a piece of cake. Back in 1991, Kim's publisher Don "Dirt" Lanier told me at one of the several # 1 parties we had here in Nashville, when Joe Diffie took the song all the way to the top of Biilboard, Radio & Records, Cashbox and the Canadian Country Chart, that someday sure as your born someone will recut that song.
With that thought in the back of my mind, and the world economic situation occupying much of my frontal lobe, I thought old Dirt might be right and this could be the year for the Old Devil to surface again. But I never thought it would be me who would dig him up, nor was there ever a calculated thought process on my part to write a parody of it, as the original I felt had enough fun and truth in it to stand the test of time .... and that's the way it was until about the first week of April, 2009.... Now call me the April Fool if you will, but these liner notes from the newly recorded CD, should explain most of what the late great Paul Harvey used to call " The Rest of The Story "
With that said, I know full well there will be those out there who may want to use this current events version that drags President Obama into this little scene, for perhaps their own agenda. I can't stop them, it's still a free country, but I can counter those who will try and use it for negative reasons. To that crowd I say, look at this photo of the sign that was in our front yard the morning of November 5, 2008. My wife Anne painted it as the election was called for Obama the night before. This Is Where The Spooners Stand On That Issue
CASE CLOSED DITTO HEADS & HANNITY ITES
And to those who think Barack is going to wave his hand and make everyone's troubles vanish just because he is President I say GET A GRIP. And for God's sake and your health's sake Take a deep breath.... Barack would want you to.
Ok now that we have that settled, let me tell you what it took to put this thing together and also what I hope might happen to the over all effort.
At first I only rewrote the first verse just for laughs, but was encouraged by several artist friends to proceed. And so I did. I then thought Ok Ken, so you have parodied your own self ... now what ? ..... At first I thought of making a little guitar vocal recording just to send to a few friends for grins....
Then I thought I know what I'll do, I'll go get myself a Karoake version and slap on the new vocal in my Garage Band computer program. There are quite a few Karoake versions of it , but the only one that was immediately available without mail ordering, was very lame and had some real wimpy background singers that I could not eliminate.... so that's when the Plan B light came on.
Back in 1996 when I was still pretty active as a songwriter, I went into the studio and recorded a CD called "Allow Me To Demonstrate " It really covered, I think the full range of different styles of music I have written since moving to Nashville in 1987. Naturally I included a version of my genuine rent payer, If The Devil Danced on it.
These Allow Me To Demonstrate sessions were recorded on 2 inch wide, 24 Track Tape which was the industry standard at that time. Now because the master tape has been sitting dormant for some 14 years, there is a process they call "Baking The Tape" that helps insure the stability of it, before you put it back on the machine. Unbaked tapes have been known to self destruct, just like Mr. Phelps (Peter Graves) tapes used to on Mission Impossible. Not only that, if they do come undone, they gum up the recorder and that makes for a very unhappy engineer and studio owner. So the first thing we had to do was Bake The Tape for a day in a special low heat oven
NOTHING SAYS LOVIN' LIKE SOMETHING FROM THE OVEN
So while all that jazz was going on and I kept writing and rewriting lines, I contacted my new old friend Chris Moss in Long Island. Chris put together a little you tube video for me, using another song I rewrote a few lyrics to and some photos I supplied him, about a year ago, as a tribute to a mutual friend who was literally Too Young To Die
Well over twenty thousand folks have looked at Too Young To Die mostly on plain word of mouth. You can see it too by clicking the title, but do it later after you see Chris's newest work OK? After all isn't that why you came here to begin with... to take a gander at "Obama Motors" ?
So For Maximum Enjoyment , Make sure you watch it in HQ mode by clicking on the little red button on the bottom right of the player. Then you can see the fine detail on the images I sent Chris to make the video with.
On Monday April 6th, 2009, I went into old friend Rich Adler's new SoundWave Recording Studio here In Nashville, and Warbled Away on my new lyrics. As you can see I brought along another old pal, Joe Diffie, for encouragement and to perhaps sing a bit, but he just kind of hung around the studio with us.
I would of loved to had Joe do the Actual Warbling once again on the tune, because no one warbles quite like Joe Diffie does, but he is kind of busy right now recording a new Bluegrass album for Rounder Records.
RICH ADLER WORKING HIS MAGIC
We transferred the original Analog Tape to Digital . All those colors you see on the monitor screen are the individual tracks.
And when I got home with it all mixed and ready for CD duplication, video etc . would you believe sitting in my mailbox was a Royalty Check from the original record that was released 18 years ago this past month that paid for all the new recording costs, and more ! Now I ask you is that an omen or what? You can't make this stuff up ...... songs you can make up, but stuff ...it just has to happen.... sort of like what happened to me the very day Joe Diffie's very fine version of the song was released to radio.... that you can read about and hear Joe really warble it by clicking here.
AND WHO WOULD OF THUNK IT ?
AFTER 18 YEARS, JOE'S VIDEO OF THE SONG IS ON "THE INTERNETS " TOO !
And as for this new version, I'm hoping some of you might like it enough to want to own an actual CD of it or at least an MP3 File of it. I am planning to donate part of the money to a local good cause . To find out how you can, just E MAIL ME HERE . I will soon have a one click Pay Pal and order page up on here , but for now E mail will work just fine.
I have already contacted Nashville Rescue Mission a very worthy place, to see if they are interested in particpating. Because One : I believe strongly in "What Goes Around Comes Around " and Two : Barack asked all of us at his inaugaration, to think about what we can do in our own community to make it a better place.