The Pop Song
A little story that I wrote related to this collaboration....
During our first COVID19 lockdown, I recorded a collection of my own songs and published them to Bandcamp for others to enjoy. This was a project I had been considering doing for a few years and the lockdown gave me the time to put it together. I am proud of all of the songs, and one song in particular is pretty special, "For G". As you can guess "G" is my wife Gianna. The song came about one night while I was just noodling around on guitar with something. Gianna came by and said "That's really pretty. What is it?" I said "I don't know. I just made it up". The fact that she liked it inspired me to formalize what I was doing into a song. It was very purposefully recorded free of any time signature. I was simply following the decay of the notes as a feeling for when to pick the next. This fact is important to understand for the purposes of my story.
You can hear my original song which I have since renamed as "For Gianna"
In early 2021, my music came to the attention of a song writer based in Spain. He in particular fell in love with the song "For G". He contacted me and asked if it was ok if he wrote some lyrics to the song. I said that was fine and I'd love to hear them. I honestly didn't expect much. About 2 days later he sent me a rough MP3 with my original song and his vocals over top. It was fantastic. In the lyrics he weaved a story of Gianna and me together in April during COVID19 lockdown. It is a love song. Both Gianna and I loved it. He said that if we worked on the song a bit he could make it better. He said he found it hard to sing to my original because of the song's unusual time signature (See I told you this was important). Over the next month he and I worked back and forth refining and reworking my original song to fit into a time signature so that he could sing it properly. Meanwhile he worked on completing his lyrics. Not being a singer I didn't really understand why he found the song hard to sing to but I was happy to just work with him on this and see where it led. I'll tell you, I have always thought my sense of music time was good but working with this guy definitely pushed me. After a while I was playing this song so consistently that you could literally play two versions side by side and not hear any discrepancy (actually for kicks I did this with 4 separate tracks recorded over 2 nights). I now know what professional studio musicians have to live up to.
In late March 2021, I sent my final track for him to record his lyrics on. A few days later he sent me the finished products (yup two of them). He recorded a version of the song with just my guitar and his voice. He also recorded a "pop" version with some extra instrumentation and production. Stunning. Really stunning. I was thrilled to hear a song that I created and worked on come to life like this. Once I heard the final product I understood why getting the timing right was so important.
So a little about this song writer from Spain….. Jake Boncutiu. Turns out he is a professional singer, songwriter, producer and performer. He has written and performed #1 pop singles in Spain and on Apple ITunes. He works with major artists and has written hit singles for them as well. Somewhat fortunately it never even occurred to me to do an internet search on him until after we had finished the song. I think if I had known more about Jake I probably would have approached playing the song differently. All I knew as we worked on the song is that he was some sort of professional. Here is his website. You'll see that his music style is pop/dance music.
Once we finished the song the question was, what do we do with it? I've never actively tried to monetize my music. I was just happy to work on this song and happy that someone liked it enough to express interest in working on it with me. He was very excited about the song and asked if we could publish it. As an industry guy, he already has all the distribution agreements in place so really no effort on my part. I told him I was in for the whole ride. He said "nobody makes money selling music any more" but it would be out there for people to hear and enjoy. Perfect!!!
There were some delays due to some miscommunication with his distributor but 2 weeks ago he told me it was all set to go and that he had arranged for a Friday release date …. because Fridays are when new singles get released according to him. This way the song has the best chance for exposure.
So on Friday May 7th, 2021, available world-wide on Apple ITunes, Amazon Music, YouTube Music, Spotify, Tidal, Deezer, TicToc and pretty much every other major digital music store my song with Jake Boncutiu "For G - I am Home" was released.
You can hear the two versions of the song here