Stop All That Damn Power-Walkin'

Stop All That Damn Power-Walkin'

cts's picture



Liner Notes: 

Back in the early 90s, I remember being in a particular part of town in Richmond where the residents were mostly white, upper-middle class. I was visiting a friend and we decided to go for a walk. I was hesitant initially, but figured the walk would be a good thing. We ended up meeting a black couple who were...power-walking. It struck me as odd because I had not seen black people power-walk before. It turns out they were her neighbors and we ended up talking for a good while. I learned that they were conservatives (I really didn't understand the term or cared for that matter back then). I didn't get all bent over their preferred political choice, but it just seemed like they were very detached...from practically everything. Our conversation lasted about 30 minutes maybe, but when it was over, they went back to power-walking down the street. I just remembered looking at them, thinking...they really need to stop with the power-walkin. This song is me reflecting on that moment in time.

I was having issues with the bridge and so it's very sparse and since I don't play piano very well, it may sound like I'm just meandering around. Maybe I am. I'll add more to this later. Marking this NSFW because of the title repeated in the chorus.

How I did it:
Recorded and mixed using Acid Pro 6
Virtual instruments: acoustic bass, piano, electric piano, hammond organ, strings
Alesis MIDI controller
Squier guitar
Vocals: me
MIC: Shure SM7B


There they go again/ puttin' on their tennis shoes
Their headbands and Walkmans/ so they can hear the grooves
Out in public with so much haste/ they can hardly keep up the pace
Arms back and forth/ hips side 2 side/ trying 2 win a no-win race

Stop all that damn power-walkin'
It won't get u far
So stop all that damn power-walkin'
Don't u realize who U R?

All because somebody next door/ said it'd be good exercise
So the Toms took the tip/ all happy and giddy/ yet they don't realize
That all they're doing is being the monkey/ that they're thought 2 be
It's easy 2 spot/ monkey does as monkey sees




2019 The Jelly Factory!

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


OdilonGreen's picture

What a terrific social commentary song: it has a lot to say, and sounds damn fine saying it. It’s only two short verses and a chorus, but those limited words are cutting and vibrant and angry, and the polished music belies the critical lyrical barbs directed at the couple in question. An invigorating listen, and well worth developing further (as per the liner notes) if you’re so inclined.

coolparadiso's picture

Nice intro and build up to the harmonies, held by that drive beat. Nice.

Acousticmaddie's picture

Hahaha lovely. The ideas of "modern" society can all be a bit weird from time to time. As a vegetarian atr work I seem to be the only normal one since everybody is on some kind of diet all the time and of course powerwalking, something-insert-new-word-at the gymi-training. Great lyrics, very well produced as usuall.

wobbie wobbit's picture

could really picture the video to this. a lovely mix of serious and comic in the subject. nice work

Adnama17's picture

Why don't they just jog and get it over with? Why waste a perfectly good walk by rushing through it? Seriously!? I much prefer a good meander any day of the week.
That chorus is the best. Whatever that percussion thingy is when you turn around and go back into it is great! It's like you're trying to distract them with something shiny so they'll see the light and turn from their ridiculous ways.
Isn't it interesting how the most random things stick with us forever and end up meaning more than we think they do down the road?

jcollins's picture

Reading the lyrics...I can see Monkey does what Monkey sees. Ready for the audio...hold. Whoa, that's a cool groove...drums and keys sound great. Vocals now...nice lofi sound. Chorus now...sounds great. Nice mix. Vocals and melody are really good. Piano change's cool. Love that jazz drums and bass. Very catchy chorus. Great job on this!

musicsongwriter's picture

Very interesting complex song Craig. Fascinating to read about the story of your song, how your recorded it and listening to your work. You've addressed all the issues brilliantly. Very catchy song. I love the contrasts. Brilliant lyrics, vocals, instrumentation, solos. A real and rare treat to listen to your work.

3tdoan's picture

Never thought of power-walking as a class/race marker but, well, of course it bloody is! Catchy groove and orchestration. The bridge doesn't sound meander-y at all, I like a simple melodic solo.

headfirstonly's picture

Nicely observed. And I don't think there's anything wrong with the bridge. Like the power walkers themselves, it doesn't really have to *go* anywhere at all.

I guess that power walking was one of those memes that we had before anybody knew what a meme was. Like suits with shoulder pads, deely-boppers, clackers or LA hair metal bands...

helen's picture

From the title, I was kind of expecting something comedic, but this is pretty biting social commentary, set to a very danceable groove. Nicely done.

Fuzzy's picture

I agree with @wobbie wobbit; this tune definitely needs a video.
Excellent grooves here, and I like the vocal treatment too.
Yeah, so smoooooth......
I'm not sure what people are trying to accomplish when they power walk; it doesn't even look that fun or comfortable to do.
Now I'm wondering if your power walkers were wearing the spandex shorts and all that...

aricate's picture

The lyric is hilarious. If you think power walking is bad, check out pony walking. Good grove. I like the use of the minor.