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#989015 - 12/20/12 11:38 AM The strangest inspiration for one of your songs?  
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 2,706
MidniteBob Offline
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MidniteBob  Offline
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Raleigh, ya'll
I was just over in the "Success" Forum and listened to Markus-Ky's eerie-tinged rocker "Haunted"--(another plug for ya Bro), and it got me to thinking about how our songs are inspired.

What's your strangest?

Mine is easily "Styrofoam Elvis"...One morning, I was working in Detroit in January, outside construction type of work, and a blizzard was coming in. I packed up all my tools and tossed them in the van to head home...18 inches eventually fell.

A I started to pull out, an REM song came on the radio that I'd never heard before--or since---And somewhere in the first verse, Michael Stipe's voice came out of the radio and whispered:

"Styrofoam Elvis"

That was all. Just those 2 words...So I did the only thing I could think of to do when Michael Stipe's voice comes out of the radio and seaks to you...I bought a bottle of Southern Comfort, went home and wrote the best Jimmy Buffett style song I could while watching the snow come down.

Eventually I Googled REM and found out the song was titled Daysleeper", and nowhere does it mention anything about Elvis, or styrofoam.

And in spite of some peoples' suggestions, the Southern Comfort came AFTER the voice:-)

Curious to hear others' experiences.


Satchel was right. Something is gaining on me.

The Shoebox & Dinner at Eight trailers available at:

#989028 - 12/20/12 12:59 PM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: MidniteBob]  
Joined: Jun 2001
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PopTodd Offline
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PopTodd  Offline
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Western Springs, IL, USA
I think that it was maybe the blinds in my bedroom at the time. Just plain, white louver blinds that were kinda half open.

The image just inspired this first line:
"I forgot to close the blinds the night before
And I know that my window faces east..."

"A Perfect Girl, A Perfect Tune"

and it took off from there.

#989036 - 12/20/12 02:08 PM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: PopTodd]  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,995
Ray E. Strode Online content
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Ray E. Strode  Online Content
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Brunswick, Ga. USA
A few years ago I remembered Ralph Emory interveiwing George Jones. It seems in George's early days, and after Elvis broke, George, who hated rock music, billed himself as Thumper Jones. That was the only time I had heard the story and it was brief. Back in 2002 I wrote a song, Entitled Thumper Jones.

Ray E. Strode
#989064 - 12/20/12 08:40 PM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: Ray E. Strode]  
Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 11,981
Scott Campbell Offline
Scott Campbell  Offline

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Lakeland, FL, USA
A single road sign with two words and an exit number inspired me to write 10 songs - with one more coming. That has got to be my strangest. smile


#989093 - 12/20/12 11:52 PM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: Scott Campbell]  
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Rick Norton Offline
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Rick Norton  Offline
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St. Augustine, FL
A co-worker related a dream he had about buying a frozen butterball turkey carrying it home in the back of his pick-up. He looked in the mirror to see it get up and jump out of his truck. This became "The Legend of Gary's Turkey". I gave him a CD of the song and another co-worker made a nice sculpture of the headless turkey.


#989104 - 12/21/12 01:42 AM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: Rick Norton]  
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 6,092
ben willis Offline
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ben willis  Offline
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Ft. Myers, FL. USA
I have never gotten inspired. An idea and what follows just happens. I can't explain it.

#989109 - 12/21/12 04:42 AM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: ben willis]  
Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 29,275
"Tampa Stan" Good (D) Offline
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"Tampa Stan" Good (D)  Offline
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Tampa, Florida since 1973

Last November 12th, I woke up gasping for air...& the whole time my brain was busy thinking up Hook...Verse...Chorus...for the Song I'd WRITE about it...

&.."VARIOUS SHADES OF BLUE" made it..on Board 1. (Whew!!!)

My Strangest SONGS..like "BLUE BUTT MONKEY" & "SANITIZED SANTA"..mostly come outta reading the daily newspaper..& end up on Board 3. (Easier Pickings..heh!)

#989113 - 12/21/12 05:30 AM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: MidniteBob]  
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 528
Moosesong Online content
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Moosesong  Online Content
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Vacaville, CA, USA
a couple years ago I went to the race track. In between 2 of the horse races, they had a weenie dog race. When you're watching a bunch of weenie dogs running along you can't help but smile. When the race was done, I sat down. I noticed that many of the other people were still standing and pointing yelling 'címon, címon' and children were jumping up and down and pointing. I got up to see what I had missed, and saw a weenie dog with lame hind legs propped up in this harness with wheels. He was pulling himself along with just his front legs. Even though it was a good minute after the other dogs had finished, when this dog on wheels rolled across the finish line the crowd went nuts. They were cheering twice as loud as they had for the winning dog or any other horse race they watched that day.

That inspired me to make up a story which became the lyrics
"Roll along little doggie" that I just posted on lyrics board 1.
(I'd been meaning to post them for quite a while, this excellent question gave me the motivation)

David Hunkins
Music page

There is only one "best", the best you can.
#989140 - 12/21/12 02:23 PM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: Moosesong]  
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Harriet Ames Offline
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Harriet Ames  Offline
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Shelton, WA
I was driving around town one day and saw a bumper sticker on a car that made me laugh. a couple weeks later I saw it again..
"caution...I drive like you do"
and went home and wrote "Fair Warning, I Play Like You Do"

#989396 - 12/23/12 10:55 PM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: Harriet Ames]  
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 251
Fred Choate Offline
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Fred Choate  Offline
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Billings, Montana
I wrote "Leaving Livingston" last summer as I was on my way to a camping spot in the Montana Rockies. As I pulled my camper through one of the windiest areas in Montana (Livingston Montana), I said to my buddy Mike, "Man, I can't wait till we leave Livingston and get out of this god awful wind!".....and the song was born. We wrote it on an envelope I had in the glove box as we drove.... smile

Fred Choate
Billings, Montana


#989398 - 12/23/12 11:14 PM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: Fred Choate]  
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 13,207
Michael LeBlanc Online content
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Michael LeBlanc  Online Content
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A funeral,a snake,a hanging,KKK,a weiner dog,gettin' drunk with Jesus,a levee,a bullfrog,an empty page.

#989401 - 12/24/12 01:08 AM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: Michael LeBlanc]  
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DonnaMarilyn Offline
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DonnaMarilyn  Offline
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Putting polish on my toenails one summer morning resulted in a long Celtic folk ballad, "Her Ten Little Toes". grin

The first verse came to me immediately. I scribbled it out quickly before I had to rush into town. The remaining verses and chorus unfolded in my head while I was lying - stuck full of needles - on an acupuncture table. At the end of the hour-long session, I cycled back home furiously, repeating the verses out loud to myself so I wouldn't forget them before I could write them down.



Honour the Earth. Without it, we'd be nowhere.

Life is too important to take seriously.


Guild of International Songwriters and Composers

#989421 - 12/24/12 08:28 AM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: MidniteBob]  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 5,573
Little_stevie_b Offline
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Little_stevie_b  Offline
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Hickory, North Carolina USA
I was standing at a urinal at a campground bathhouse. There was water everywhere from swimmers and people showering but around the urinal there was some water as well. I was barefoot. I wrote WALKING BAREFOOT ON A CAMPGROUND BATH HOUSE FLOOR between when I was standing there and the time I got back to my campsite. It took about 10 minutes as the melody was there at the same time as the lyric. Here's the link if anyone's interested.



#989423 - 12/24/12 10:41 AM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: Little_stevie_b]  
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 13,207
Michael LeBlanc Online content
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Michael LeBlanc  Online Content
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I work at a state park Lil' Stevie and i'm willin' to betcha that wasn't water you were wadin' in at the urinal,LOL.Oh well,at least ya got a song out of it!Mike

#989643 - 12/26/12 09:00 PM Re: The strangest inspiration for one of your songs? [Re: Michael LeBlanc]  
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,576
Rick Heenan Offline
Rick Heenan  Offline

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Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,576
Lockport NY, usa
I live near the Erie Canal. When we were young(er) and fresh out of high school, that summer before college and other responsibilities, we would take our gals out along the towpath in our cars with armourous intentions.

I include the song that was inspired by our actions in my repertoire, I call it "Submarine Races." This past summer I played this song for a group of canal aficionados in Syracuse, NY. Believe it or not, a young man actually questioned the validity of such races in the canal. The audience guffawed and explained it to him. I wanted to sing, "Let me tell ya bout the Birds and the Bees," etc.

Thats my story.

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