A Lost Chord

A Lost Chord

ustaknow's picture



Liner Notes: 

For me a track like this is what folks mean when speaking of an "album" of work... it will only "fit", --there, imo.

These lyrics were modified again, from the prior post, but I feel those stand on their own for what they are, -- this with pickup line/"chorus", so to speak and other.

Anyway, and too, -- this is the one-take while writing and not yet learned vocal/guitar track, then, overdubbed (I hear fh/bh beat reversals but no one else may... so what the heck). But, what I find is that I like the "feel" of these first takes and work out a syncopated feel, as I attempt to do with the Bass, on/off beat, -- but got a bit "messy" when went further. I think it could be "served" by a redo with hi-hat and snare hit, but, -- maybe not. The "beat" for me my be a percussive as it needs to be and again, didn't want to risk it being sonically "messy".
-- The initial overdub was heavy handed and very "trippy", spacey, "acid-trip" -y... so just kept chopping out and left what appeared to "serve the song" and not sound cliche. Some may have preferred it, hard to say, but "messy" to me Crazy

-- The "Key" choice made a difference for two reasons, --the harmonica "intonation", if used blow key a, draw key e and with the flats/bends or could otherwise sour it (just kept going and kept the one that sonically fit... I think I got close enough for government work here Crazy The other reason was, -- vocals, since this Key drove up where I started and kept it with "some" modulation, not to "drone-y".

Also, for me, I see this as for use as a "jam" progression with which it could then go from 2min to 15min in a live, cool, low key venue, harp, strings, guitar, bass, keys, etc., even vocals could then be riff'd ... imagine "Aretha" (loved that woman!)... riffing, "came from the soul of me plainly..." O M G !! Crazy

Other, ref, see prior lyric only for URL-links:
Pub dom rewrite, arrangement copyright 2018 ustaknow (alias) all rights reserved; see prior post liner notes for source URL-links:
A poem by Adelaide Anne Procter "A Lost Chord", published in 1858 in The English Woman's Journal. Public Domain. Set to music, first - "The Lost Chord", Arthur Sullivan 1877 Public Domain.


C c Bflat b
Seated all day at the alter
F f
I grew weary and ill at ease
C c Bflat b
My fingers they wandered wildly
F f
Over its noisy strings

C c Bflat b
I knew not what I was playing
F f
Or-what-I-was dreaming then
C c Bflat b
But I struck one chord of music
\Aflat d# c \F c Aflat F
Like-the-sound-of a chorused wind ; sound-of a chorused wind

C Bflat F Aflat… ^ v
My lost chord, life like chord, chord of life so rarely hear-rd

C c Bflat b
It quieted all pain and sorrow
F f
Like love over-coming strife
C c Bflat b
It seemed a har-monious echo
F f
Towards-a-dis-connected life

C Bflat
It-left-as-it came so secretly
And now I have sought, and seek it vainly
C Bflat
That one lost chorused divinity
\ Aflat c F d# c Aflat c F d# c
Which-came --from the soul of me plainly ; from the soul of me plainly


C Bflat
It may be that lifes forge anvil
Will speak to me that chord again
C Bflat
It may be that only in Heaven
Shall I hear, that-great-again

C \Bflat
Maybe my lost chord of life again
Is not so lost... after all
C Bflat
Maybe it was all my future songs
Aflat c Bflat d F c sus
Reaching out to me ... ..., from echoed halls … … futured chords

Please keep your comments respectful, honest, and constructive. Please focus on the song and not the demo.


billwhite51's picture

this is spectacular. your singing is amazing. reall chain gang moan reverberatng through the church. i not crazy about the harmonica, but i ike the way it fits themattically. maybe is it was puled back in the mix and put into an echo. you really gave this poem some ,meaning. it didnt mean much to me when i read it, but its going to haunt me now.

Been waiting for this! your vocal i so strong on this - the music is almost incidental not exactly but you know what i mean- of course it does add extra the notes are so nice and clean . i think i might have been led a bit by young Billy White about the harmonica but in the end i think i liked it as it is. i love the way you have just bent and shaped the lyrics to musically do whatever you want!

Chip Withrow's picture

Wow! I'm loving the guitar/vocal - could certainly be performed with just that. But the other fascinating background sounds take this to another level. And the lyrics are powerful, evocative, inspirational.