Pictures I Meant to Hang

Pictures I Meant to Hang

fresh spotless youth's picture



Liner Notes: 

Is anything more poignant than an estate sale? You'll find everything a person owned, from family photos and art to unopened packages of adult diapers and garden tools--all of it priced to move. Why shouldn't there be a VHS tape with a recording of the decedent's band as well? Picture the bass player and the drummer awkwardly waiting for a piano intro to end. Eventually I want to rewrite this from Tutankhamun's perspective.


I see you there in my basement
My estate you excavate
Pick up that tape
Pop it in and press play
And wait for the ghost of my face

You’ll see the bass player smile at the drummer
And they’ll shrug as if to say
What should we do with our hands and our youth
While the piano player takes it away

What should we do with our hair
What should we do with our faces
What should we do in these moments we lose
Drip by drip
As the cameras embrace us

Oh what will you do with my heart
What will you do with my dreams
You pick up my things
Turn ‘em round and...Kaching!
I see avarice light up your face

What will you do with my pots
And what will you do with my pants
What will you do with my fresh spotless youth
And all the ramshackle fruits of my hands

What will you do with my house
And all the wire I bought to hang
Pictures of my mother holding me lovingly
Pictures I once meant to hang

What will you do with my car
My hard drives and macrame
What will you do with my songs
Tell the truth
Will you play them or throw them away

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


metalfoot's picture

I like the melancholy to the tune as we consider the reality of the estate sale... all those intentions and memories now left to others to care-take... and 'ka-ching!' the money wins over the memories.

Also, mad props for working your screen name into your lyric so deftly.

katpiercemusic's picture

Well this is super sad. My brother usually hits all the estate sales he can in the summer looking for things he can bring to the charity auction at GenCon. Sometimes when I'm visiting him I tag along, but I always feel just like this. Like everyone is there, carrying off the bits and pieces of a life that was once important, or completely inconsequential. Like ants. Well now I'm awfully disquieted... but in a good way.

atitlan's picture

This has that melancholy indie feel of people like Babybird or Teleman, but combined with lyrics that could grace a folk song. It makes for a great combination and the lyrics do a good job of conjuring pictures in the listeners head.

billwhite51's picture

this is poignant in spite of its wit..or perhaps even more poignant because of the sad knowledge of the absurdity it all. lovely performance that shares both the comedy and tragedy of life..and the loss ot it and the things life collects and disperses.

sbs2018's picture

Clever lyrics! Love the sentimental vibe to this with those lovely vocals! The song caught my attention because, having recently moved, I unboxed 3 pictures this morning and leaned them up against the wall to get a feel for whether I want to hang them in my studio.

Vom Vorton's picture

Damn, look at you starting off on day one with an instant classic! This lyric is haunting and witty, and the melody, guitar crunch and dreamy arpeggios are the perfect setting for it.

TomS's picture

Sister Lovers feel. Awesome. Smile we used VHS tapes to record digitally in the 80s.

mike skliar's picture

This is totally profound, totally entertaining, and feels so natural and organic that it's scary-good! what a creative idea, and so well done! (wish i had thought of it, of course)

excellent, and the production is perfect for this, too.

thelowestbitter's picture

this is great, really catchy and well arranged, it's making me want to put my midi controller aside and do something on guitar. Lyrics are wonderful. Love the subtle arps in the background too. Ace opener!

coolparadiso's picture

Oh yeah. Cool song. Pretty sad feel to it and as others say very poignant. You really paint good pictures through your observational style.

IA's picture

Oh so nice.

It feels so personal and specific.

I can transport me into that situation. Exquisite!

Kurtis Kanttila's picture

Such an interesting theme for a song, and the song fits it perfectly. Great lyrics, the ending is a perfect line. Very well done!

JamKar's picture

Beautifully conceived and executed. How many times do estate sales cause us to reflect on our own life!
Some of us are pretty close to this realization. You are off to a brilliant start.

Ferry Colyer's picture

That is some nice pondering and wondering. It's like you've thrown yourself back in time reviving a musical era long forgotten. Arpeggios are a very nice touch!

The song lyrics are appealing. I recently bought some cassette tapes in a thrift shop; I'll never know who they belonged too, which is a meaningful mystery of not knowing things to me. Some of the songs were cool too.

OdilonGreen's picture

Atmospheric and nostalgic and ultimately very touching. Quite a lovely mediation on transience and life and the ever-present question of: what is it that we leave behind anyway?

Wolf Kier's picture

Beutiful arangement, loving the little descending lines. There's a real melancholy pondering here. What will you do with my... xyz?, is a phenomenal hook, but especially, amongst all that deliciousness, for me was... my heart. Great stuff, my friend. Great to hear you again. Have a great productive summer. Looking forward to more from you.

dzd's picture

Great song idea! and very well executed, that king tut idea is a good one too!
Used to buy out a lot of estate sales at auctions and such, was a side hustle Wink and was always interesting/heartbreaking at the same time, and even harder to put a price on a lot of things, or just trash it.
You've nailed that feeling with this tune!

sph's picture

Great song! Got a lump in my throat from it.

Technicolor Gramophone's picture

Great storytelling ... lyrics are just fabulous. The mid-tempo-piano driven arrangement is perfect for the melancholy message. I love that little keyboard thing in the background and the slight hints of electric guitar. So beautifully sad! Incredible start.

Stephen Wordsmith's picture

I enjoyed the very gentle, toothsome musical delivery; hit a pleasant savoury spot for me and made me nostalgic for a warmer and less complicated decade (spoiler: the 90s). The accents and layering were lovely when they kicked in; different enough to add interest but subtle enough not to distract from the trance I was held in from the first second.

Lyrically, this is even better. Your choice of narrator plus the selection of mundane details used to tell a far less mundane story are incredibly effective. You recount an everyday tragedy in a way that is in no way trite - drawing forth the sentiments of a character who we are programmed to block out or overlook, and letting us hear their uncomfortable truth unvarnished, which is still in itself enough to invoke the sadness, guilt, pity, and everything else we need to feel in such circumstances.

Deft use of literary devices, too. Clever and very natural use of anaphora (as others have mentioned) and it's not often you get to see a lyric that includes both a title drop and an author's name drop, but here we have it.

OK, I'll shut up now. This was magnificent.

DeannaSweidel's picture

Wow......just completely blown away by every piece of this. The story and melody and music are so perfectly aligned. Bravo

Jeuse's picture

Props for writing a song that almost demands an immediate second listen for context once it’s finished; kind of like the lost songs of scarcely heard of artists bear review by their peers. Captivating scenes and descriptions here that I’m genuinely into.