Simon

biography



I was born. I'm still alive. I am human, with a yang for my evey yin, a lie for my every truth, a complication for my evey simplicity, and a sadness for my every joy. My eyes are the shattered windows of my soul; my lyrics, the fractal light shining through.
BLOG POSTS
1

Stuck in the country

January 20th, 2007 + 1:01 AM  ·  Simon

I can't help it. Oh, I'm trying. Yes I am. But no matter where the inspiration starts, it ends up in the country. I have half a ream of paper with half completed rhynmes. Every ones a country hit to play in 4/4 time. DAMMIT, there I go again. Some of them are good, but they're all country. Want to know a secret? I don't listen to country, and I don't know more than a couple dozen country songs all the way through - and those are the Garth and Trish Yearwood CDs my wife brought home. So what is it that is drawing me to these country rhymes? It's the stories. Nothing accomodates a story like a country song, except maybe a folk song. If you don't like country lyrics, bear with me. Or don't. Well, these things come full circle, so I guess the best I can do is write my way though it, and hope it's just a phase. The only problem is, I'm getting old. I don't have time for too many more phases like this. Of course, I might just start to like country a whole lot more and devote the rest of my life to it - God help me!
1

Trolling the Lyric Forum

December 19th, 2006 + 4:12 AM  ·  Simon

The Lyric Forum is a pretty exclusive place these days. just a handful of us writing and reviewing each others work. It would be nice to have more participation, but the main focus of this site is music composition, performance, and production, and what we lyricists are, in large part, are the ones who start with words and go from there. Words and their meanings are probably more important to us. We are "into" songs with a message. Not everyone is, and some people don't even consider the meaning of lyrics when they evaluate a song. 

But we do the best we can, and I have noticed an overall "raising of the bar" in the posts. There are some fine lyrics being posted, and each of the regular posters is getting stronger and stronger in their writing skills, particularly with regard to coherence and focus from the start of the piece to the finish. I feel the confidence levels rising, and I'm happy for all of you who are growing as writers as a result of your participation.

I too am growing, and I thank all of you who have reviewed and commented on my lyrics for participating in that growth. For those of you who haven't browsed the posts recently, I highly recommend that you do.

Thanks particularly to Kings and TonightsLastSong (TLS) for your thoughtful reviews. TLS, I hope you will post more of your own beautiful lyrics in the future.
3

Make it your craft, not your life

December 1st, 2006 + 5:12 PM  ·  Simon

Don't make the mistake of confusing your life with your craft. A song may seem like it's about the writers own personal experience. But it ain't necessarily so - and that opens another can of worms about writing lyrics, and maintaining inspiration all the way through a piece.

Most lyric writers, myself included, start because they need to express their personal joy, angst and confusion about their lives. But if you're productivity is only going to carry you as far as your current crisis, you're likely to run out of material eventually, or else write only sporadically. When you delve down into your soul, and find only reruns of "Friends", what are you going to do? Go out and get run over by a woman (or a man, or a pickup truck) so you will have something to write about? Nothing to laugh at - I'm sure some people do.

Good writing is a craft that combines emotion, inspiration, skill, and lots of practice. At some point you have to be able to draw on your well of emotion and personal experience to convincingly turn situations and stories into your own. When you can blend the dispassionate skill of writing with the emotion of the poet, you take a huge step forward in being able to write consistently and productively. I didn't know this - I just stumbled on it within the past year. I hope that sharing it with you gives you something to think about, so you can reach this point a lot faster than I did.
0

Reviewing posts and accepting criticism

November 19th, 2006 + 3:11 PM  ·  Simon

We each read or listen to music and lyrics from our own perspective, and we like or dislike them based on our own system of values, beliefs, experiences, etc. This is what makes artistic expression so wonderful.

So when reviewing a post, you should feel free to express your thoughts unfettered (but respectfully). When you receive a critical review, you should consider all criticism with an open mind and determines what resonates with you as truth, and what sounds like feedback based on personal taste. Use what you can and discard the rest. But remember that if you like what you have written, your artistic conviction and integrity will stand up to any criticism.

Don't defend yourself against criticism by explaining your work to the reviewer, unless your purpose is to ask for suggestions on how to achieve your goals with greater success (especially regarding technical issues). Your post needs to stand on it's own. Just as a comedian cannot make a joke funnier by explaining it, you cannot make your music and lyrics better by explaining them. If others don't receive your artistic expressions well, you have to decide how important that is to you. If you believe in your work in spite of the criticism, maybe you are just an eclectic genius waiting for your audience to catch up 
0

newbie gone wild

November 18th, 2006 + 7:11 PM  ·  Simon

So here I am, a newbie on bandamp who has now spent a few days poking around the site, trolling the forums, stepping out of line in the chat room and getting my hand slapped by the people I hope will become my friends (thank you), and getting really positive feedback on the lyrics I have posted.

In fact, the feedback is so positive it's a little embarrasing. It's great to put your creative work out here in such a positive environment, and I want to thank you (you know who you are, but I can't remember your screen names) folks who created this site to make it possible. But for all you wonderful people who care enough, and have the interest to post reviews, I would like to remind you that constructive criticism is as important (and hopefully as welcome) to a developing artist as is praise and encouragement. Criticism is what helps us to become aware of our weaknesses, which we can learn to avoid or improve on. So no matter how much you like something, don't be afraid to point out where there is room for improvement, or even a little part that you just don't like. Remember for everyone who says it, there are many more who would feel the same way. So what you think is important. That is why we share.

I have read Tonights Last Song's blogs on writing song lyrics. This is great stuff. I agree 100% with the idea that songs and lyrics don't have to follow the rules of structure. They just have to be 100% YOU. You have to write out of conviction. When you do, your work becomes believable to the listener.

I'd like to add something to that. Not every song needs to have meaningful lyrics. But if you want your lyrics to have meaning, don't waste your lines. Make every one contribute to the meaning in one way or another. It makes the meaning clearer and more compelling. Sometimes it feels like you just can't find the right words for a certain line. You will find that sometimes it's better just to leave that line off completely, and that doing so can add a unique variation to that particular verse, and sometimes make it mean more than if you added the extra line. This is something I found out through years of writing essays and business letters. Say exactly what you have to say in as few words as possible. I prune my writing like I prune a tree - prune away all the fluff, until what is left is exactly what I wanted to say.

I learned something really profound from an casting director at Disney. She was talking about acting, but it applies to all forms of communication. Communication isn't just about broadcasting what is inside of you out. It is about broadcasting what is inside of you all the way into your audience. You, not the listener, are responsible for what they hear. So you have to communicate with utmost clarity, whether you are trying to convey a message, a feeling or an atmosphere. How do you do this? That is where your own creativity comes in.

One more thing. The best way to become a better lyric writer is to practice. In that way, it's no different than learning an instrument. There is nothing wrong with writing lyrics for six hours and throwing it all in the trash. It means you just got six hours closer to being a decent lyricist.
0

I'LL CRY AGAIN

August 24th, 2008 + 1:08 PM  ·  Simon

[verse]
In unspoken ways
Our beating hearts convey
The messages of one-another's soul
With no why or when

Timeless ...

I'd never ask
Whose water that you stole
To give me back these tears
I'll cry again

[chourus]
When we make love, why
Do you always close your eyes?
It's so hard to change what might have been ...

But I long to see the light you shine
From someplace deep within
So open up your eyes, Vera Lynn

[verse]
In unbroken lines
Our lives are intertwined
In a world bejeweled with secrets
That nobody knows

Suddenly ...

All our lives
Have flashed before our eyes
Like a ghostly presence
That comes and goes

[chorus]
When we make love, why
Do you always close your eyes?
It's so hard to change what might have been ...

But I long to see the light you shine
From someplace deep within
So open up your eyes, Vera Lynn

[bridge]
Is this love just a game
Played on both sides
Of a dangling conversation
That never ends

Or will you be waiting in the morning
To paint a scarlet letter on my breast
And send me away

[chorus]
When we make love, why
Do you always close your eyes?
It's so hard to change what might have been ...

But I long to see the light you shine
From someplace deep within
So open up your eyes, Vera Lynn
1

Brand New Day

January 5th, 2008 + 12:01 AM  ·  Simon

VERSE
Candlelight and inclinations
Slowly intertwine
Shadows dancing on the wall say
Love is back in mind

If we keep believing
We can leave the night behind

CHORUS
Sunshine pouring
Into a brand new day
Spirits soaring
Tears . . . are running away

Raven flies in morning skies as
Memories ascend
Treasure sparkles in the moonlight
Hearts are on the mend

If we can keep believing
This night will never end

Sunshine pouring
Into a brand new day
Spirits soaring
Tears . . . are running away

BRIDGE
It's a brand new day
Letting go of the night
Breaking through
From our fears
Into the light
 
(INSTRUMENTAL BREAK)

Sunshine pouring
Into a brand new day
Spirits soaring
Tears . . . are running away


-writen by Norman Maser 1/1/2008
5

INVISIBLE

December 19th, 2007 + 1:12 AM  ·  Simon

INTRO
Baby,, do you remember
All the things you said to me
What was that word you used?

Looking in my eyes you said
There was nothing you could see

You said, "Invisible . . ."

CHORUS
Over and over
Like water pouring from the skies unseen
While I held you, and kissed you once again
Did you think your words could wash us clean?

VERSE
You tore me up, were you trying
To push me down so you could see
Past the obstruction I've become
To your private agony?

In that place down inside
Where you endure all your sorrows
You know I'd share them all with you
I'd lay them bare for you to see
That it's not me you're looking through

When they're invisible

Over and over
Like water pouring from the skies unseen
While I held you, and kissed you once again
Did you think your words could wash us clean?

Baby, you know all my secrets
Should I have shared them all with you?
You turned them into weapons . . .
And shot me thru

Then you sent me away
Into the cold arms of darkness
And she embraced me as her own
Will I be the last to taste your tears?
Is love so hard for you to hold?

When it's invisible

Over and over
Like water pouring from the skies unseen
While I held you, and kissed you once again
Did you think your words could wash us clean?

OUTRO
You said invisible
Over and over
You said invisible

Love is invisible


-Norman Maser 12/18/2007
2

SHIPWRECK

December 18th, 2007 + 3:12 AM  ·  Simon

This is a poem I wrote the other day. I'm letting it stew for a few days, then i am going to take some of the verses and ideas and write a song lyric. Interested in what each of you finds most appealing, and any other comments you may have. Thanks.


SHIPWRECK

Baby, do you remember
All the things you said to me.
What were the words you used?

Looking in my eyes you said
That there was nothing left to see

Over and over
Like water pouring from the skies unseen
While I held you, and kissed you one more time
Did you think your words could wash us clean?

You tore me up, were you trying
To push me down so you could see
Past the obstruction I've become
To your private agony?

If it was pain you could not handle
I would share it all with you
I overstepped a boundary
And so quickly you withdrew
To the top of the mountain
Looking down on me
Your eyes were orbs of judgment
Through which you could not see

You know my secrets
I've shared them all with you
You turned them into weapons -
And shot me thru . . .

You sent me away
Into the cold arms of darkness
Knowing she'd embrace me as her own
Will I be the last to taste your tears?
Is love so hard for you to hold?

Living alone, there’s no one to catch you
When your spirit flies astray
To bring you back and hold you close -
Someone whose love will stay
How do you grow
Until your roots can find their way
Into fertile soil?

Your boat has sailed
But your anchors have stayed
Where you cut yourself adrift
The tides have since played
In the tossing of the sea
Until the anchors of your life
Are buried in the sand

It's too late to find them
They are lost to you now
You stare into the water
And you sing your songs
And remember the love
That you hoped was real

When the rain falls all around you
And you feel close to God
Do you pray to Him to drain the seas -
To let the rain keep falling down
Hoping that one day
You can walk across the sand
Where now great oceans stand?

Baby, what prophets have you followed -
How are they named -
What have they led you to -
Is this where you will stay?
Your mind is all but open
To the destruction you accept as hope and pain
Your boat has shipwrecked on a rocky shore
It's time for you to learn to walk again


- Norman Maser 12/15/2007
3

TEN YEARS TO LIFE

December 13th, 2007 + 5:12 PM  ·  Simon

for female vocal

With unspoken words you ask
If I will still be true
I look at you and know
That I'm the center of your life . . .
That you pay out every day
Dreaming each one brings you closer
To holding me
In your arms again

But can I see this through . . . ?

CHORUS
Ten years to life
Without love by my side
With no one to hold
And no place to hide
Waiting for you
To hold me
In your arms again

Doesn't matter what you've done
My love for you is sure
I look at you and know
That you're the center of my life
But what demons must be slain
When I wake up every morning
And you're not there?
Tears will fall like rain

I've walked this road before . . .

Ten years to life
Without love by my side
With no one to hold
And no place to hide
Waiting for you
To hold me
In your arms again

BRIDGE
Every day without your love
Is a prison for me, too
I waited so long -
Can I still be that strong?-
What are you asking me to do?

How can I promise you . . . ?
 
Ten years to life
Without love by my side
With no one to hold
And no place to hide
Waiting for you
To hold me
In your arms again

Waiting to hold you
In my arms again.


- Norman Maser, 12/13/2007
Alias: Simon
Status: Offline
Threads: 30
Posts: 169
Songs: 0
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Last login: February 05th, 2013


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