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My New Song “Thank You Day and Night” is Out Today

On all the major streaming platforms as well as iTunes and Youtube. It’s another soft rocker. Here’s how I described the vibe to Spotify: “Meditative ballad about harmonizing the transcendental nature of our subjective feelings and thoughts with the realities of life.”

Apple Music
Thank You Day and Night Lyrics:

Thank you day
Thank you night
How far away is the light
I've been praying all the time
So much pain in this life

For a way back home
I'd give anything I own
Oh oh oh

Thank you day
Thank you night
I am blinded by the sight
A thousand shadows taking flight
Inside their hearts my soul's come alive

Drink the water from my soul
Traveled back in time to your door
Oh oh oh oh
Oh ooh oh
Oh ooh oh 

I've been digging through the floor
Sing my song maybe the gates will open more
Then she came at chakra four
Connecting worlds
Freeing shadows that have been ignored

For a way back home
I'd give anything I own
Drank the water from my soul
Traveled back in time to your door
Oh oh oh
Oh ooh oh
Oh ooh oh

Just Released a New Single “A Magic Lake”

My new single “A Magic Lake” went live today on all digital platforms.


Apple Music:

Youtube Music: https://music.youtube.com/watch?v=blXM0cN8Zk0&feature=share

Regular Youtube:

This Hypeddit Landing page has links to most of the places it is available for streaming or purchase. The top two, Spotify and Apple Music, I think account for something like 90% of music consumption these days, but as I come across others, I’ll add them both to that page and this one.


Just Released Two New Songs On Spotify

My latest single just dropped on Spotify, Apple Music, Youtube Music, Amazon Music, really every streaming platform on Earth by way of Distrokid. It’s also on regular old Youtube.

It’s called “Just for a Moment,” and the B-Side is “Union Street (Hold On).” Give me a listen, like, and follow if you’re a fan.

My New Song “Sloan River” Released Today

“Sloan River,” a tune that came to me almost exactly on this day in 2019, was finally released today. I say finally. Really, it was one of those rare ones that just came all at once, even pretty much the lyrics. If, back then, I was thinking like I am now, I would have chased it down and gotten it out then. I never thought it was the greatest thing in the world, although I did think it was interesting and organic, and I was impressed by the way it made me sing (really high, especially on the verses!), but what I mean by that is that it captured the mood of a moment in time very accurately and spontaneously, and I think it’s better to chase those down in the moment and get them out closer to when they are born. Maybe all of them should.

Another reason I think it’s good to get them out quickly, especially when you get the rare gift of the music and lyrics right there all at once, is that doing a million different demos sucks the soul out of you and makes what is exciting (making art!) suddenly not just a chore but a neuroses! And it nags at you! This little song, which again, I don’t think is anything special, has been nagging at me for the better part of two years! That’s just not healthy, either for the artist nor the art. I think what I’m looking for is that exact middle ground between rushing (as if it has to be out tomorrow) on the one hand versus procrastination on the other. That middle ground is a psychological state of acting, of progress, but within the bubble of calmness, relaxation. It’s a state that’s rewarding in and of itself, no matter what activity it is applied to.

I am proud I at least got it out though, and with each new release I feel like I’m learning more and getting better.

-Stephen Pickering, Little Rock. July 2021

Lyrics for "Sloan River":

[Opens with four line chorus]
Sloan River takes you down
Sloan River makes you drown
Sloan River takes you down
Sloan River makes no sound

I wanted to pay
Pay my mistakes
Tried to walk away
But I could not escape

[chorus first two lines only]

I wanted to skate
And walk away
But memories of your face
I could not erase

[Chorus first two lines]

I wanted to leave
I wanted to find
The lady of the lake
Lady of your mind

[Final Chorus full]
'Cuz Sloan River takes you down
And Sloan River makes you drown
That honey river will take you down
That haunted river makes no sound. 

Literary Writer’s Word of the Day: Forecourt

I just realized that in the example I just read it’s mostly a British English usage. “Garage forecourt” is simply the area in front of a gas station where the pumps are. Of course it sounds better in the British version. I was going to try and use it in something I’m working on now, and maybe I will force it in somewhere just for fun, but I realized most of what I was visualizing in my own story are areas we refer to simply as “courtyards.” Still, if the area is large enough, such as the areas in front of government or university buildings, it’s tough to refer to those places as courtyards. “Courtyard” has a more intimate connotation, and really more of an inside the building feel to it than out front.

The second time was a bunch of posies—pink carnations—from the garage forecourt, a spontaneous gesture after a cheap but fun restaurant date.”

‘Floriography: The Meaning of Flowers’ by Sarah McPherson

The ‘forecourt’ hashtag on Instagram

Writer’s Word of the Day: Owlish

I settled into it until I was certain, then upped the tempo and went on by her in a long sprint finish, was clinging to the ladder when she arrived, feeling less like a beached blowfish than on other days. “Well now!” she gasped, looking startled and owlish.”

John D. MacDonald, “Bright Orange for the Shroud: A Travis McGee Novel” page 66 of 288 on Kindle, first paragraph of Chapter 5.

I don’t think the dictionary definition does this one justice. “Wise and solemn” is not the sense of it here nor in a way you may want to use it literarily. To me it’s the subtle widening of the whole circle of the eyes yet simultaneously keeping the rest of the face frozen. I feel like I’ve gotten and given spontaneously without thinking this subtle yet powerful expression a million times in my life without ever having been able to put it into words. I don’t think I would have gotten it here if John hadn’t added the world “startled.” When the expression of surprise comes only through the eyes, ironically, because the expression is trying to be hidden, it’s more powerfully and deeply felt. Normally when people are trying to woo or flatter you, they consciously add in the facial expressions. Ironically it loses effect. You know it’s not emergent from the heart in a spontaneous way. It’s when they really do feel surprise (I think mostly in the positive sense at something you’ve done or how you look) that you could describe their face as “looking owlish.” It’s a neat and fun word to use. And a very common experience. It’s power comes from its spontaneity, and “owlish” is a great way to describe it.

My Latest Single “It’s Spring” Dropped Today

My new single “It’s Spring” was released today via Distrokid which means it should be available just about everywhere you stream your music or buy digital downloads. It’s also on Youtube which I’ve embedded below.

The track was written and recorded at the beginning of April 2021. I wish I had written in my notes the exact day that little riff came to me. I know I was sitting at my desk with a guitar in hand working on the lyrics for another song, when it came, as they do spontaneously out of the the ether. Usually with such things, I’ll record the fragment into my phone and get back to the task at hand, thinking I’ll come back and finish it later. Nine times out of ten that never happens. I was a little proud of myself for going ahead and finishing a complete draft which I was happy with and is more or less how it is. Maybe it’s the generic nature of the subject. Maybe I just got lucky. It happens.

I had some specific images in my head from past Springs that feel so idyllic now. I think that helped drive it. Even if they’re not there exactly on the page in specific detail, I do think having pleasant memories in mind that you are working off of, playing off of makes the process more fun, and your mind becomes less judgmental, critical of what you are writing.

The Symbolic Meaning of April Is the Cruelest Month

“April is the cruelest month” — My first impulse when I hear this, is that nature becomes so beautiful so much what a fairy-tale or magical mythology looks, feels, and tastes like, that it fools you more or less into thinking you are on the right track to embark on an adventure of an everlasting kind, but then when the season ends with all its mythologically inclined and emergent sensations, so does your sense of everything magical coming into being. In this sense, Spring is the ultimate “bait and switch.” It seem to be fucking with you.