Excuse, Tempted (Squeeze), Not Tonight
“Excuse” was written at the end of the summer of 2001. Even if I didn’t keep an OCD database of every detail of every one of my songs I remember that, because I tracked it on the compilation CD for the first Blogathon even though it wasn’t really in the Blogathon – it had just missed being included, and I added it to the end as a bonus track.
Actually, there’s only one copy of that CD in existance on the entire planet. I gave it to Gina in Creative Writing class in Sophomore year, and she was like, “what’s this,” and I was like, “all that stuff we recorded this summer,” and she said, “oh, cool.” That’s the last that I saw of it. And, when I say there’s only one copy … seriously, no more copies will ever exist. I don’t even have the high quality files anymore. All that existed was just the one CD. (And maybe I gave one to Rabi?)
I was reminded of this recently because we were in Gina’s car on the way to a meeting and I was paging through her CD binder looking for a Peter Mulvey CD and was like… “Peter M… wait, this isn’t Peter Mulvey. What the hell is this? Why is my name on it?” And then I realized that it was the single copy of my Blogathon CD – in absolutely perfect condition. It’s just been sitting in Gina’s freaking car all of these years.
Tempted, by Squeeze
Capo to five to match the recording with these chords.
If you play these chords open without a capo (as I do) you’ll be a fourth step lower than the recording – the first chord here is a G, and the first chord on the recording is a C. However, I promise you this is the best possible position to play the song in (and, probably the best place for a baritone to sing it).
Intro: G G/F C7 C
Verse A: G D/F# Em A Cm Gm Dm Eb (quickly: Bb F)
Verse B: C(7) Eb G F Faug Gm C Bb (quickly: C C/Bb)
(G G/F C7 C) x 2, then A Am
(G G/F C7 C) x 2, then A Cm (riff: Cm, Cs2, Cm, Cs4)
Roadmap: Intro, Verse A & B, Chorus, Verse A & B, Chorus, Verse A, Chorus x 2
Some voicing suggestions:
As Elise discerned immediately after hearing the first verse, “Not Tonight” was written as my retroactive submission for the soundtrack of Elizabethtown.
As much as I’m enamoured with pretty much everything I write, I’m especially fond of the bridge in “Not Tonight”: “I’m leaving these feelings in the early morning light, with the sun, streaming, on your face – so quietly, so perfect for me.” It’s actually a direct nod to the last verse in “Excuse”: “Streaming sunlight interrupts our quiet repose, and shifting glances tell the tale better than these notes do.” And, you know, I didn’t just lift the setting out of laziness; even as I was writing “Not Tonight” it took shape as somewhat of a sequel to “Excuse.”
That in turn reminds me of the bridge of The Dresden Dolls’ “Backstabber” where Amanda sings, “don’t tell me not to reference my songs within my songs!” Like, if I want to create a narrative line, that’s my perogative. It’s not like I’m lifting whole verses to reuse (a-hem, Madonna).
Trio – the original singer-songwriter web session – returns for its sixth season featuring my original music, recorded live and DIY in my bedroom. You can download this Trio, or listen to a previous Trio: