• Make My Life…

    September 9, 2016 | News
  • Every song I have written has a story behind it. Not every song has an INTERESTING story behind it…but there is some sort of tale to be told for each song. Someday I will be putting all these stories into a book. Someday I will clean my gutters. Let’s see which someday comes first.

    In 1982 I was lying on my couch. My wife Sandy and I lived, with our two small children, in a house the size of my current computer screen. When I lay down on the couch to watch TV I could actually turn the channels with my toes. This was a teensy little house my Grandmother lived in till she passed away and my Mom sold it to us. I worked all day as an electrician and wrote songs at night and on the weekends. That night I was watching a ballgame with the sound down low and doodling on my guitar in search of something to turn into a song. Cause I really didn’t want to be an electrician no more.

    I heard the announcers have the following exchange:
    “If it was up to me I would ……”
    “Well, it’s NOT up to you!”
    “Well, it oughta be up to me…”

    I perked up and said to myself…
    ”Ought to be up to me”…hmmmm. That sounds fun rolling off my tongue.”

    I have a friend who met John Lennon at a party (before he died) and John allowed him to ask one Beatles question. My friend asked “In “I Am The Walrus” when you sing “Expert texpert choking smoker don’t you think the joker laughs at you”…what did you mean?”

    John replied, “I didn’t mean anything. It just felt good coming off me tongue.”

    As a writer I have always tried to be aware when something feels good coming off me tongue.

    I tried to use it in the context I heard it but I couldn’t find a song in that. I decided to split it up and end lines with them and find another phrases that also tripped lightly off me tongue. It turned into:

    “Is it life lived separately?
    Is life all it ought to be?
    Oh if it were up to me
    I’d make my life with you”

    I slapped those bad boys onto a pop synth ballad and had me a song. Earlier that week I had sat on the swing set in the backyard and wrote half of a song called “Love’s Been A Little Bit Hard On Me” (Only half cause I thought it was stupid and not worth finishing).
    That song became my first song recorded by an artist and was a Pop hit that let us buy a nice big house with a TV the size of Kansas. The “Ought to be up to me” ballad became my first country number one when it was released by the Oak Ridge Boys. Because it was a big pop synth ballad.

    I don’t remember who won the game. Let’s say Dallas.