Category: Music (page 1 of 2)

Stone, hell yes

Tuesday Evening, 73°F and clear
Listening to The Beatles—Dear Prudence

A post shared by Grace (@realgrace) on

This is for every Pearl Jam fan who doesn’t think Stone Gossard gets anywhere near as much credit as he deserves. Ellie, Clive, and Saint all understand who the sacred heart of Pearl Jam really is. Oh my god, Stone, hell yes.

Read about these hardcore Pearl Jam fans in my tragicomic novel, State of Love & Trust.

Progholm Syndrome

Tuesday Evening, 33°F and foggy
Listening to The Nice, Rondo

Progholm Syndrome … It’s no secret that I have a thing about progressive rock. I tend to go through phases with it, where I will get deep down into a single prog band for days or weeks then I’ll come back out of my prog binge and not listen to another note of prog for weeks.

A few years ago my best friend and I started a really limited Facebook group called Progvember, dedicated to listening to prog during the month of November. For some reason (probably a combination of NaNoWriMo and a disgust hangover from the US presidential election) I neglected Progvember entirely in 2016. I thought I could get away with that. Turns out prog had something to say about that. Uh-uh, Grace. Not so fast. Continue reading

Rumors of Rock-n-Roll’s Death

have been greatly exaggerated

Tuesday afternoon, 63° and windy
Listening to Night Beats, The New World

If you believe rock n roll is dead, or that there is no good new rock music, or that Justin Beiber, Rhianna or *insert popular, predictable, auto-tuned act here* killed rock n roll, I have seven suggestions for you.

1. Quit complaining about today’s Top 40. Top 40 has largely sucked throughout its history, has only been a trailing indicator of musical trends, and has completely missed countless fantastic acts. For every Space Oddity there were approximately 1,794 Afternoon Delights. If you’re over 35, you do not have enough years left to wait for Top 40 to spoon feed you something great.  Most likely, it won’t.

Yes, 1973 was an exception. So what. You’ve been holding your breath for four decades waiting for that to happen again? Get over it.

Continue reading

A Banner Day

In My Pearl Jam Universe

Thursday night, 70°F
Listening to The Rolling Stones, Let It Loose

Or how I got copyright permission on lyrics from Pearl Jam

How many times have you been told that you can’t put lyrics in your novel? That it’s impossible (or at least prohibitively expensive) to obtain copyright permission on lyrics? If it’s important to your novel, then it’s worth the effort to try. I did, and it wasn’t nearly as difficult as people claim. I’m so glad I didn’t let their negativity discourage me.

First things first: you absolutely must get copyright permission on lyrics before you publish them in your manuscript. Not only is it the right thing to do, it’s the law.

On August 17, 2016, I made a post explaining why the words of Saint Wozniak’s Whipping tattoo were left out of my novel, State of Love & Trust. In short, his tattoo is the first stanza of the Pearl Jam song, Whipping, and therefore protected by copyright.  At the time I wrote that post, I was well into the process of attempting to obtain permission from music publisher Hal Leonard. Based on everything I’d read while researching copyright issues, I fully expected it to be too expensive. But I had to at least ask. Those lyrics fit Saint’s reckless, hard headed character too perfectly for me to not at least try to get them included. Continue reading

Why 2112 Inspires Me

Sunday morning, 72°F and sunny
Listening to The Allman Brothers, Jessica

I take my writing inspiration from a lot of different places, but mainly from music and musicians. While I’ve talked about Pearl Jam quite a bit because my first published novel was inspired by their music, I think it’s time I mention Rush and how their album 2112 inspires me.

It’s a story any Rush fan knows, so here’s the short version. Rush’s first, self-titled album was a brilliant work of accessible hard rock that went gold. Their second album,  the more progressive Fly By Night, went platinum.  Caress of Steel, their third album effort, contained a 12-minute progressive piece, The Necromancer, on side A and the entire B-side was a conceptual suite called Fountain of Lamneth. That album “only” went gold, disappointing Rush’s label.

The label instructed Rush to head back to the studio and produce a rock album more like their first.  No more of this 12-minute long progressive experimentation. We’re in this to make money, boys. Now step in line. But Rush believed in their progressive direction and hit back hard with 2112, a concept album that begins with a 20-minute, 7-song suite based on an Ayn Rand novella. (Oh look, novelists inspiring musicians. I love it!) Continue reading

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