Kevin Brown,

Music Monday: “We’re Gone”

1045 Shawn GR 600Sometimes all you get is a fragment – a small glimpse of what your great new song could be.  Maybe you get a melody or two; maybe a couple lines you think you could do something with.   If you have a little luck going, you get both.

I’ve learned to try to capture these little bursts of inspiration when they happen, because you might not remember that riff the next time you pick up the guitar.  And even when you jot down some lyrics, you can’t always get back the vocal melody that made you think you had something in the first place.

That’s how it started with “We’re Gone”: I only had a few short seconds of song at first, but it felt good.  I knew right away that I wanted to flush out these ideas and have it on our sophomore album, Right Now.

By August of 2011, I was close to having the full fledged song, but back in January of 2011, this demo fragment was all I had to go on:

Rough around the edges, but there’s something cool about it, right?

Flash forward to February 2012, and I’m in the studio with drummer Dan Pavlovich and producer Vincent Ratti recording “We’re Gone” for real, as part of the Right Now sessions.   With additional help from guitarist Kevin Brown, and guest vocalists Alison Cloud and Shawn Gamble, we had our song.  I hope you enjoy the finished “We’re Gone”!

Shawn

Get “We’re Gone” on iTunes or Amazon.

 

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Music Monday: “You Are Not Alone”

Get “You Are Not Alone” on iTunes or Amazon.

This is a fun one for me.  I used to play bass in a band called Jealousy Faction.  I’d been involved in other bands growing up, but this was the first group of mine to actually release something.

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Jealousy Faction in 2000 left to right: Chris Meservey, Ben Davis, me (Shawn Mocey), and Dan Stahlecker

The first track on our first real EP was called “You Are Not Alone.”  We went on to put out some tracks with more polish, but there was always something I really liked about this one:  the energy, the fun – it all reminds me of those early days making music.

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Shawn playing with Jealousy Faction at CBGBs in the summer of 2000

The singer and songwriter for “You Are Not Alone” was my friend Chris Meservey, and a few years ago (maybe 2012) I caught up with Chris and asked him if I could put out a Kiera Plan cover of Jealousy Faction’s original track.  An idea had struck me one day on a commute to work:  “You Are Not Alone” came on shuffle, and I was feeling like there was a piece missing to the original, so I was there in the car and I started making trumpet sounds over the track, imagining this song was by Reel Big Fish or The Mighty Mighty Bosstones instead of Jealousy Faction.  Our original was very straightforward pop-punk, no horns to be found.  I took a voice memo down, and when I got home, I set to work transcribing my fake trumpet part for the real thing.

When it came time to put it all together, I was excited to have my new bandmates in on this older song.  Tim Zaprala, who’d been performing with me in the Kiera Plan for several years, tracked the bass, adding some flare to the original part.

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TKP bassist Tim Zaprala

Kiera Plan drummer Kevin Brown came through and delivered the acoustic guitar that bookends the track.

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TKP drummer Kevin Brown (who dropped some electric and acoustic guitar on our album Right Now)

It’s been almost 17 years since Jealousy Faction put out the original, but here’s hoping you still have fun rocking out to “You Are Not Alone.”

All the best,

Shawn