Easily one of the most powerful and emotional songs I’ve ever recorded, the fourth song on the album is a co-write with my good friend Jefferson Taffet (check out his albums by searching Lionz). We’ve collaborated before on a song called “Give it Up” available on the Stranger Things Have Happened CD.
He originally recorded this song in my studio in Athens about fifteen years ago and I always loved it. Even though it’s a drastic departure from the rest of the album, I felt compelled to get it out into the world.
Moonlight Madness is just me on guitar, vocals, strings and my signature french horn. I tried to keep it as stark and simple as possible to highlight the love and desperation of the great lyrics.
“Will you hold me up, and never let me slump, give me two good shoes, we’ve got some walking to do”
Below is a picture of the skyline and moon at Atlantic Station where I recorded it.
The third song on “Life’s a Love Song” is one I’ve been trying to get right for a few years. It’s been a staple at my shows since I wrote it but it was hard to fully embrace the quirky-ness in a recording. The classical guitar gives it it’s flavor and like a lot of the songs on this album, the backing vocals really tie it together.
The lyrics are about how life can really get in the way of what matters unless you stay conscious and connected with your loved ones (something I’m not always good at unfortunately).
“And don’t you know, we’re constantly on the go, running from one place to and fro, or talking on the phone, that’s why I don’t let you know enough how much it is I love you”.
The picture below is from the day I recorded the vocals. It was a complete rain out at the job site and I had sent everyone home. However, I was stuck there waiting on a truck to come in. So why not be productive! #songoftheday
Song #2. This one has maximum “feel good” vibes. Simple words about love and transition, originally written when we were living in Asheville and thinking about the big move to the ATL. Needless to say, we made the transition and have never looked back (although I’ll always miss the NC mountains).
The music on this one has about as many counterpoint solos as one can handle (or possibly too many) with me playing multiple guitar, harmonica and piano leads and John Kell getting in some jabs on sax. It’s short but sweet and is one I automatically want to turn up.
It’s got me on drums, guitars, bass, ukulele, harmonica, piano/synths, mandolin and vocals, John Kell on sax/backing vocals and Adair and Rob Sankey on backing vocals.
The pic below is the solar farm in Richland, Georgia that I was building at the time when I did a lot of the finishes to the recording on this one. I actually found and negotiated the land and built most of this particular solar farm from beginning to end.
My new album is finally out!! Song #1. I recorded it partially in Asheville, Atlanta and in the car, job trailer and hotel room while building one megawatt solar farms in South Georgia. Literally, some of these songs were recorded sitting in my car either on the job site or sitting in Hampton Inn parking lots after dark with people walking by wondering what the hell it was I was doing. So, I managed to get the album done and create enough solar energy to power a few small towns.
“Celebrating All Your Wonders” is the first song on “Life’s a Love Song”. It’s got a unique feel and sounds a little different from a lot of my other songs. It could be my choppy drums or just the over all beat. Whatever it is, it always seemed to be people’s favorite so I put it first on the record. I liked the opening line “Kicking a stone down the street, thinking about the next time you’ll be kicking it with me.” It kind of ties in the old school and new school which reflects my style perfectly.
This song features me on drums, guitar, bass, keyboards and vocals, John Kell on sax and backing vocals with Adair and Rob Sankey also on backing vocals. Ricky Rodriguez mastered it at Bomb House Studios in Morganton.
Thanks for listening and supporting independent music!!
After not posting for about two months I’m finally getting back to posting the next song from my ‘Risky Biscuits’ album. This was recorded on my 1/2 inch eight track tape machine and features Mike Elam’s brilliant flugelhorn. It also features Jeramy Lamanno on drums, Dwayne Wallace on bass and John Wayne Tuggle on slide guitar. Thanks for listening!
Yet another song from ‘Risky Biscuits’. This is a love song with a big chorus featuring the great Andrej Kurti on violin. Dwayne Wallace does double duty replacing my normal choppy piano playing with his great skills (he also plays bass). I’ve always felt this one hasn’t quite reached it’s fully potential and may get a rewrite and record in the future. Thanks for listening!
Working and temporarily living in Rhode Island is really putting my home life and how much I miss it in perspective. For some reason this song makes me feel a little better this evening.. Thanks for listening!!
Today seems like a good day to be at the Outer Banks. Since I can’t be there physically, why not post a song about a love story of a couple getting together later in life to move to the Outer Banks to live on the beach and play music in the bar at night.
Friday is my fifth anniversary being married to my lovely wife Adair so I will continue posting some sweet love songs in celebration. It is amazing how fast time flies by and plays tricks on us. All the more reason for “our love to show the way”.
I played during and after a really nice wedding at Tybee Island this weekend and was reminded of this song. Weddings tend to remind me of my sentimental songs. I’ve actually played this one in a wedding and at a few new age church services. This is a very rough version because it was recorded on my song a day jaunt last year. Thanks for listening!
Welcome to Chris Cates.com. I'm an old school independent artist with lots of albums, songs, solar panels etc. This site tries to encapsulate what it is I've been doing since I played my first professional gig at 13. I post a song of the day occasionally from my somewhat excessive original song catalogue and I'm constantly recording new material when I'm not building solar farms, trying to play golf or tennis or taking care of my new twin girls.