Hotstuff

This album was recorded at the same time as Simple Words. This one was conceived as an album of 'hot' songs, though as mentioned in the notes on Simple Words, a few songs were swapped around.


The album kicks in with country-style "A Short Song About..." which is a cheeky story about a bad one night stand. It makes me chuckle with lines like 'we woke at six o'clock and jumped out of bed'. This song is perhaps not safe for work.


"You Are The One" is more conventional rock/pop, with possibly my first stab at an honest love song - lines like 'you're one of the girls I keep thinking of' and 'a poor excuse for a boy, hoping I can be your loving man'. I've done this on YouTube more recently.

There are a couple of instrumental fills on this album, and the first ("Phil's Fill #1") is just my solo electric guitar playing a little tune I've also done on YouTube, using my guitalele.


"Show Me The Way" is trying to be The Beatles (especially with the harmonies) crossed with some other 60s influences. I'm imagining a different singer on the verse and chorus. The song has a 12-string (acoustic) guitar solo and some 'flute' too. There's nothing much to it lyrically.


"Being Bored" is almost a true story, exaggerated somewhat. The central message is that I preferred being bored over spending time with this person - 'a farewell party for the most hated girl next door'. For the recording, I made a little piece of dialogue that was slightly influenced by something by the Divine Comedy. The song ends with me telling the young lady to p*ss off - oh dear!


"Mailman" is me pretending to be American again. It's similar in style to "Kansas City Bus" from the Hopeful/Mixed Emotions collection, with its arrangement including an electric guitar riff and solo. I like my backing vocals on the end of each chorus. The lyrics tell a story of a guy who hasn't been very good in a relationship.


"Success Story" sounds musically like a dirge but lyrically is about a rock star (if only, haha). The song has a counter vocal which was quite hard to imagine during the writing process but came out ok.


"Phil's Fill #2" is a riff I discovered and made into this rocky little instrumental. At least 3 electric guitars (plus the bass) played side-by-side at the crescendo of this song.


"Baby Says" is a simple 12-bar-blues song - little more than a groove but fun to play. There's another 12-bar-blues song (with a different beat) towards the end of the album too - "Crazy Woman".


"Working Week" should be sung by Ringo Starr! It has interesting chords and the lyrics are (if I say so myself) inspired - they're symbolic of the ups and downs in some romantic relationships.


"Can't Ignore It" is a lusty little number with lines like 'It's not love, just infatuation' and 'she makes me see double'.


"Save Me Now" is another song of frustration, about wanting someone who is not available. Musically it's another rocky little number.


"Pleasure And Pain" is a favourite of mine. While the title might suggest this is another 'hot' song, this one is actually about making (and specifically recording) music - the frustration of getting it wrong versus the joy of getting everything right. The arrangement includes slide guitar, banjo, mandolin, and piano. There's also a highly pretentious middle section where I temporarily change the time signature and whole tone of the song.


Finally, confirming that I've named another album after an actual song, is "Hotstuff". This is 12-bar-blues again, although on acoustic guitar this time. The lyrics are pretty much nonsense, but it's an old favourite, which was written in the late '80s.


The album artwork uses a photo of Athena Kavis courtesy of Unsplash

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©2019 J P Wattam