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#789730 01/22/10 03:46 PM
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So here is the setup:

It's your night. You have an audience of 5000. You are going to do a 10 song set. It's just you and what ever instruments you can manage by yourself. (for me a guitar and harmonica). You have to love every song you sing. You don't want your song selection to be so esoteric that nobody has ever heard the song, because you want to please the crowd. You must already know these songs. I'm not talking about songs you would like to learn but songs you feel you have already mastered. What songs would you preform?

5 years ago, I would have chosen a different set; but today, this is my set list. What would you sing?

Angel from Montgomery (John Prine)
The Highwayman (The Highwaymen)
Hotel California (in Am with C harp- Eagles)
Ain't living long like this (Rodney Crowell's version in A with D harp)
Poncho and Lefty (Willie Nelson in D with D harp)
Wagon Wheel (chorus by Bob Dylan verses by Ketch Secor)
American Dream (by Rodney Crowell)
He stopped loving her today (George Jones)
Somewhere over the Rainbow (version by Israel Kamakawiwo)
Funny how time slips away (Willie Nelson)


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Just me, huh? Lessee... 5,000 people is probably a family audience, so I can't do any of the only-in-a-bar tunes. I'll avoid the ones that kill off Santa, and Barbie, and religion, too--never know what's going through that audience's minds. On the other hand, I want to guarantee I'm memorable. I'd do:

Dead Things in the Shower (co-wrote with Bobbie Gallup)--fast two-step
Eatin' Cornflakes from a Hubcap Blues (slow & sleazy quasi-blues)
Bluebird on My Windshield (fast bluegrass)
Crosses by the Roadside (mod. two-step)--this'd be my one serious song
The Termite Song (fast bluegrass)
Hey, Little Chicken (sleazy blues)
Duct Tape (mod. speed country)
When I Jump Off the Cliff I'll Think of You (fast bluegrass)
I'm Giving Mom a Dead Dog for Christmas (slow & sleazy)
Un-Easy Street (Stan Good)--mod. two-step

Includes all the best crowd-pleasers, and I can do (and have done) all of them solo.

Joe

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That's a nice list, Joe (Harris). (Joe Wrabek's post snuck in when I was typing). I can also hear you singing Wichita Lineman. Maybe an encore...... smile

Playing by the rules you've set, I would do the following (guitar and harmonica):

John Henry
St. James Infirmary
City of New Orleans
Long Gone Lonesome Blues
Blue Skies
Erie Canal
What a Wonderful World (Israel style)
House of the Rising Sun
This Wheels On Fire
Stand By Me


But that's not what I'd really do. smile

Because if I had a captive audience of 5000, it would be for the only time in my life. I wouldn't waste the opportunity and I'd sing only my own stuff. Even if I crashed and burned because people tuned it out, I'd look back on it with regret (if I didn't do it).

Only a few people have ever heard these, but my true list would be

Amen
Some Assembly Required
The Whole House Down
Broke Down in a Carny Town
Steelworking Sons of a Gun
Birmingham Blues
No Easy Thing
Arizona
Looking For Serenity
Your Voice Singing

I chose these because they are the best I can do right now and also could be done effectively backed only by guitar.

Scott


Last edited by Scott Campbell; 01/22/10 04:14 PM.
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I'd have to go with my sure-fire crowd pleasers, and throw in a few of my bests...

Drift Away--Doby Gray
Signs--5 man Electrical Band
A Day In The Life--The Beatles
Family Tradition--Hank Jr
You Never Call Me By My Name--D.A.C
Babe, I'm Gonna Leave You--Led Zep
Ring Of Fire--Johnny Cash
Better Days, C'mon Big Brother, I Need A Lover, Not A Mother--Yours Truly.


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Joe, believe it our not, as I was writing out my list you crossed my mind with this thought: "I bet Joe Wrabek's list wouldn't have a single cover in it"! And now there you are. Joe, you are unique. When I get back to Oregon (I was born in Eugene) I should try to catch you preform in your native twisted habitat! I guess that would be Phoenix now right?


Scott, I love your cover list. The only one I probably would not sing is John Henry and I don't know "Wheels of fire". I just recently learned to sing "Over the rainbow" by Israel Kamakawiwo and I would have to learn his version of Wonderful world. I love his versions of these songs and I almost love them enough to buy a ukulele.


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Scott,

When are you playing? I would definitely pay to hear that original set list in action. Have you ever though about having a house party where you and maybe one or two other writers play and sing a bunch of tunes?

Me (gee, I really don't know if I can play all these!):

Going Down to Poplar Drive (uptempo)
Wednesday Type of Girl (mid)
Once in a Lifetime Love (mid/slow)
Countrified Man (uptempo)
West Texas Girl (mid)
Old and Gray (slow/mid)
There's More Than Just Pain That Hurts (mid)
She Drinks (slow waltz)
Walking Never Bothered Me (mid/up)
Won and Lost (up tempo)

I could come up with a second set of 10, if need be.

Kevin


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Bob, this is great stuff. It gives me ideas of what to do if I get back on the circuit again. I can totally see you singing "You never call me by my name"- it would be like you wrote it. I caught you at Pinevest. You are not quite as crazy as Joe Wrabek but very entertaining and very comfortable on stage. i think I still have a recording of that night.

What I hope to get here is everybody's honest list- songs that can be done solo and still deliver. For instance I could not make Hotel California work until I lowered the key to Am from Bm and then added a C harp so that I could do something that even came close to the brilliant guitar parts in the song. So if you honestly tell me you can make "A day in the life" work as a solo performance, then I might spend the time to see how it would work for me.

So I guess I am looking for peoples honest list of songs that really DO work- songs that you have honed and already know please you and the crowd. It was only a few weeks ago that I learned "Wagon wheel" and I was actually surprised when the crowd responded so well- I thought they wouldn't love it as much as I did, but I was wrong. Some songs just work and sometimes certain people singing certain songs work just for them.

thanks



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"What I hope to get here is everybody's honest list- songs that can be done solo and still deliver. "

That makes a lot of sense. I am not a performer, but your thread made me think what I "could" do. I think I should work up those 10 songs anyway.

Kevin


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kevin, have you got a list of covers you would do or are you like Joe Wrabek, most comfortable doing your own stuff?

And Kevin, I think if you play at all, you need to be singing your songs in front of people because you learn what they respond to and what they ignore. The best compliment I ever got was from a drunk Englishmen tourist who came up to me after I sang an original song called "I ain't never going back". He said, "That was bloody brilliant!". It was a story song and a protest against the Texas criminal justice system and this man, drunk as he was, "got it". Not a lot of people are so enthusiastic about an original song the very first time they hear it. I knew I was singing with passion and that I was nailing the song technically, but I didn't really expect anyone to pay much attention in that bar room and pool hall environment- so it was special to talk to someone who appreciated the writing and the performance.

I have also written a song so "perfect", I had chills and could hardly wait to play it, only to discover that absolutely nobody gave a rats ass about it. The only way I know of to get a reality check about our writing and performance is just to do it and to pay attention. The audience could be wrong, so you have to do it a few times but if you come up empty every time, then it is time to move on.


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Samjoe, I'm with Scott. If I'm performing for 5,000 people, I ain't promoting somebody who's already famous. On the other hand, you're right--I wouldn't do it anyway. And these days, people do seem to expect it: if Joe's playing, he's doing original stuff. And it'll be okay. (You might want to not eat first.)

It's a little Dylanesque, I guess, but it does work. "Deathgrass" (the band) is developing a reputation as a band that plays virtually no covers (we have a few Woody Guthrie songs in the repertoire, but even those are mostly obscure), and it hasn't prevented us from playing to packed houses. It's not exclusively my stuff, but we decided early on we were not going to do anything by anybody famous (except for Woody)--instead, we do songs by people who *ought* to be famous. Like Bobbie Gallup, and Betty Holt, and Stan Good.

Joe

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HHHmmm.... well based on what I'm currently into, I would do
1. Overture (theme from Bugs Bunny) which I segway into Puttin on the Ritz.
2. Raindrops Keep Fallin on my Head
3 A Girlbomb Just Exploded (herbietune)
4 Changes (Bowie)
5 Downtown (Petula Clark)
6 Hey Good Lookin (What you got cookin')?
7 If (Bread) (the tender moment of the set)
8 Under my Thumb (Stones)
9 Strangers in the Night OR That's Life (depending on the mood)
10 I need some Vitamin U (Herbietune)

I guess you can tell from this list, I love to do songs that would SEEM to be too big for one person...but make them completely my own... and then pull them off...people really remember that !


Herbie
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http://www.herbietunes.com

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These are all covers. I'd like to do my own stuff, but I only have 10 songs to work with.

Start with "Blue Ridge Mountain Blues" something not too fast or slow.
"Deep River Blues"
"Tomorrow Never Knows" Dylan
"Early Morning Rain" Lightfoot
"Last Thing On My Mind"
"Cathy's Song" Simon
"I Just Seen A Face" Beatles (I do this as an instrumental, finger pick guitar)
"Rainy Day People" Lightfoot
"Good Time Charlie"
"Pencil Thin Moustache" Buffett

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Joe,

I listed my own stuff because I only have 2-3 covers that I would be comfortable attempting. I just haven't taken the time to learn covers.

Kevin


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Herbie
your's is an extremely eclectic list.

Strangers in the night and under my thumb in the same set? Are you crazy? I have always loved "Down Town" but wouldn't dare sing it!

I know what you are talking about though. You can really make people pay attention when you take a familiar song and then twist it into something new. I think that is why I love Israel K so much singing "Over the Rainbow".

In my second list or even my first now that I think about it, I would add "For What it's Worth" by Buffalo Springfield. What I do different is after all the verses I add these lines after "What's going down" :

Like the Edmund Fitzgerald down-
Like Fitzgerald Kennedy down-
Like Martian Luther King now down-
Like Viet Nam now down-
like Water Gate Water Gate down-
Like the crash of O eight down
The Titanic's down down down..
going down down down.
going down......



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Ben, yeah that is what I'm talking about. Making this list does reveal really good songs. The only one I don't know is "Pencil thin mustache and now that you have mentioned it, I am interested in hearing it.


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As a few others said, I would definitely do my own songs with the opportunity, but if I was going to do covers it might be:

Wild Nights - Van Morrison
St James Infirmary - Jimmy Cox
Cathy's Clown - Everly Brothers
Pancho and Lefty - Townes Van Zandt
Mama Tried - Merle Haggard
Fire - Bruce Springsteen
Only the Lonely - Roy Orbison
Sing Me Back Home - Merle Haggard
Tupelo Honey - Van Morrison
Fever - Bruce Springsteen

Although I haven't done this specific set before I do all these songs fairly regularly depending on the venue.

Oh, and I can attest that Herbie is just as eclectic in his performances as he describes, above.

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Originally Posted by Samuel (joe) Harris
The only one I don't know is "Pencil thin mustache and now that you have mentioned it, I am interested in hearing it.


It's a humorous song with lots of sharps, flats, and 7th's.
The story is about how the singer laments about the old black and white movies and would like to solve mysteries like Charlie Chan and Boston Blackie (who both had pencil thin moustaches).

You can hear it here
http://popup.lala.com/popup/432627082210892812


"...I wish I had a pencil thin moustache
The Boston Blackie kind
A two tone Rickie Ricardo jacket
And an autographed picture of Andy Devine..."

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I don't really know many cover songs, so it would most-likely be my own tunes.
But, if cover songs it must be.... let's see if I can even think of 10 cover songs that I know well enough to play:

Norwegian Wood (Beatles)
The Dark End Of the Street (Dan Penn)
Here Without You (The Byrds)
Why Not Your Baby (Gene Clark)
Why Don't You Love Me? (Hank Williams)
Runaway (Del Shannon)
Good Night Country Girl (Martin Newell)
I'm Only Sleeping (Beatles)
Take the Skinheads Bowling (Camper Van Beethoven)
Splash 1 (13th Floor Elevators)

So there it is. Probably quite a few there that a lot of you don't know. Maybe don't even know who the artist is. So, yeah... I don't know many cover tunes.
But each one of these songs is pretty much aces.

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Ben: Pencil-thin moustache is a perfect choice. You've inspired me to learn it.

Herbie: What? No Born to Run???

Kevin: No, never thought in terms of a house party. But thanks!

Joe: I understand what you're up to now in this thread. In fact, I already got a great idea from Ben. I have a couple duplicate binders of lyrics of songs that I know how to play. Whenever we go camping with a group of friends, I take it along with me and people sing along. The cover songs I listed are all ones that are favorites with folks.

B.C.: I would have never thought of "Signs" with just a guitar backing. But now that you mention it, I canhear it smile

Scott

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Well, I've been in this movie before. I guess maybe a set of rock classics...I've played all of these many times:

Little Wing - Jimi Hendrix (w/ harmonica)
Heart of Gold - Neil Young (w/ harmonica)
River - Joni Mitchell (w/ harmonica)
Won't Get Fooled Again - The Who
The Cars Hiss By My Window - The Doors
Lola - The Kinks
Wish You Were Here - Pink Floyd
Here Comes the Sun - The Beatles
It's All Over Now, Baby Blue - Bob Dylan (w/ harmonica)
Space Oddity - David Bowie

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Running Down A Dream - Tom Petty
Folks on Treasure Island - Colin
Here Comes The Sun - Beatles
Cappuccino In The Morning - Colin
Friend of the Devil - Dead
Dreading Sundown - Colin and Kim
It Don't Come Easy - Ringo
Chasing Seagulls - Colin
Badge - Cream
Back to You - Colin


Colin

I try to critique as if you mean business.....

http://colinwardmusic.com/

http://rosewoodcreekband.com/


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For covers, I would bring an acoustic guitar, a slide, a D harp and my Roland GR-20 to do something like (in this order);

Born in the USA (Springsteen)
Change the world (Clapton)
Mr Bojangles (Chet)
Lost (Michael Bublé)
I can't help myself (Four Tops)
Guitars, Cadillacs (Yoakam)
Dark is the night (Ry Cooder style)
The fair is moving on (Elvis)
Low down (JJ Cale)
King of the road (Roger Miller)


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In this exact order

I Feel So Good-Richard Thompson
Boats To Build-Guy Clark
Time Run Like a Freight Train-Eric Andersen
At Last I Am Free-Chic (later covered by Robert Wyatt)
Fly-Nick Drake
Snowin' On Raton-Townes Van Zandt
Mariano-Robert Earl Keen, Jr.
Amelia-Joni Mitchell
A Thousand Oceans-Tori Amos
A Change Is Gonna Come-Sam Cooke

Last edited by Michael Zaneski; 01/22/10 08:12 PM.

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I Feel Alright, Steve Earle
L A Freeway, Guy Clark (Jerry Jeff)
Ring Of Fire, J R Cash
Catch The Wind, Donavan
I Feel Like Hank Williams Tonight, Chris Wall (Jerry Jeff)
Bright Side Of The Road, Van Morrison
Dimming Of The Day, Richard Thompson (Bonnie Raitt)
Sweet Baby James, James Taylor
Bad Moon Rising, CCR
Mama Tried, Merle

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Originally Posted by DukeWill
I Feel Alright, Steve Earle
L A Freeway, Guy Clark (Jerry Jeff)
Ring Of Fire, J R Cash
Catch The Wind, Donavan
I Feel Like Hank Williams Tonight, Chris Wall (Jerry Jeff)
Bright Side Of The Road, Van Morrison
Dimming Of The Day, Richard Thompson (Bonnie Raitt)
Sweet Baby James, James Taylor
Bad Moon Rising, CCR
Mama Tried, Merle


Hey! That's my second set!!! laugh


Fate doesn't hang on a wrong or right choice
Fortune depends on the tone of your voice

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from the album "Casanova" (1996)
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My 10 covers, in order:

1. Great Balls of Fire - Jerry Lee Lewis
2. Traveling Man - Rick Nelson
3. Cry Me A River - Diana Krall, Julie London (no Joe Cocker version!)
4. She Can't Say That Anymore - John Conlee (What? Who? you say)
5. Stuck In Lodi Again - CCR
6. Since I Fell For You - Lenny Welsh
7. All My Ex's Live In Texas - George Strait
8. Blue Moon And Heartache - Roseanne Cash
9. Old Time Rock and Roll - Bob Seeger
10. Night Life - Ray Price


I have always believed you should start every set with a fast or moderately fast song. Get the audience's attention and get them moving first thing. A slow song won't necessarily pull them out of a conversation they're having at the table or bar. A fast song usually will.

Since I don't know who will be in the crowd, I picked the best 10 I know from a mix of Country, Pop And Rock. If I was very familiar with the audience at the venue, I might select some other songs. But, not knowing, these are the ones I would do.

Good thread, Joe!

Alan

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Here's my list from those I would choose to play if it was just myself, an acoustic guitar and harmonica.The first four are my own.

Small Town Wind
Traveling By Train
Rolling Home
The Day You Said Goodbye

I Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In) - Mickey Newbury
Wild Mountain Tyme - Traditional
The Roseville Fair - Bill Staines
Galway Girl - Steve Earl
Six O'Clock News - John Prine
Ramona - Bob Dylan

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Originally Posted by Samuel (joe) Harris
Bob, this is great stuff. It gives me ideas of what to do if I get back on the circuit again. I can totally see you singing "You never call me by my name"- it would be like you wrote it. I caught you at Pinevest. You are not quite as crazy as Joe Wrabek but very entertaining and very comfortable on stage. i think I still have a recording of that night.

What I hope to get here is everybody's honest list- songs that can be done solo and still deliver. For instance I could not make Hotel California work until I lowered the key to Am from Bm and then added a C harp so that I could do something that even came close to the brilliant guitar parts in the song. So if you honestly tell me you can make "A day in the life" work as a solo performance, then I might spend the time to see how it would work for me.

So I guess I am looking for peoples honest list of songs that really DO work- songs that you have honed and already know please you and the crowd. It was only a few weeks ago that I learned "Wagon wheel" and I was actually surprised when the crowd responded so well- I thought they wouldn't love it as much as I did, but I was wrong. Some songs just work and sometimes certain people singing certain songs work just for them.

thanks

Samuel, I have the video you filmed at Pineyfest up on Youtube. www.youtube.com/bcushing Well done! And I'm happy to say that I've BEEN in this hypethetical situation a few times!

Last edited by Bob Cushing; 01/22/10 09:36 PM.

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Here’s a typical set from me and my acoustic, just not used to 5000 in the audience.

That’s Entertainment – The Jam
Piranha Lover – Quin/Gentle
The Boy Who Never Cried – Steve Earle
Nowhere Man (this has been in since the JPF cover challenge)
The Seeker – The Who
Sunset Boulevard – Charlie Robison
I Wanna Be Your Cat – Quin/Hollier
Roots – Show of Hands
Crazy Little Thing Called Love – Queen
Video Killed The Radio Star – Buggles

smile

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Presuming the audience would stay long enough to stomach my horrible guitar playing, here's what I'd do:

You Don't Have to Remind Me - Sass Jordan
Fall Behind Me - The Donnas
I Can't Make You Love Me - Bonnie Raitt
Little Secret - Melissa Ethridge
Silver Spring - Stevie Nicks
We Belong - Pat Benetar
Love Song - Tesla
Thank You - Led Zeppelin
Best of You - Foo Fighters
Tattoed Love Boys - The Pretenders


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Hey, I just thought up my Next CD Cover's Title: "Joe Wrabek Says I Ought To Be Famous"...

Thanks for the Kind Buzzz, Amigo..maybe It'll riccochet-backatacha Someday IF I ever Get Musically-Lucky, heh!

Like Joe, I'd prolly have Great FUN with 5000 Captive Souls A-Gathered...& CERTAINLY Have a good Ten of My Own Co-Writes I'd LOVE to pour out..(Assuming a Good Teleprompter was easily-rentable. OR I had 6 months to re-memorize all these Gems...) AND I could sing over Mix-Minuses...heh! (The Brown M&M's...no problemos!)

Alla These ARE "Hearable/Downloadable" at CDBaby.com...I'll add:

1) Everybody's Got a Little Song Inside (SG/Bill Dudley)
2) Love In The Mountains (SG/Bill Dudley)
3) Long Distance Kiss (SG/Sue Shoshana-Braun)
4) Which Hill Do We Meet On (& Who'll Bring The Beer?)(SG/BD)
5) The HEAT (SG/Chuck Crowe)
6) Yeah, God's Like That (SG/IdaMarie Naelitz)
7) Deep-Down, We're Dogs (SG/BD)
8) Got My Sox On, Baby (SG/BD)
9) Cries in The Night (SG/Ken Veenstra)
10)Honk If You Love Atheists (SG/Bill Dudley)
(Encore:) Don't You Ever Grow Old (SG/Dan Grays)

Now...let's see...COVERS..(Assumin' I could Remember/Learn the Words:

1) I Am (Neil Diamond)
2) Moon River (Mercer/Mancini)
3) Satistfaction (Jagger/Richards)
4) My Way (Paul Anka)
5) Urgent (Foreigner)
6) She Came In Through The Bathroom Window (Beatles)
7) Crazy (Willie)
8) Get Out of My Dreams (Get Into My Car) (Billy Ocean)
9) You May Be Right (Billy Joel)
10) All You Need is Love (Beatles)
(Encore: Imagine (John Lennon))

Either way, prepare for an Eclectic Evenin'!
Best Wishes, Big Hugs,
Stan

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Polly! No country songs?

Joe

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This is a great thread. There have been some great song selections so far. Here's mine:

1. Queen of Argyle (Silly Wizard)
2. Red Haired Mary (Clancy Brothers and many others)
3. Loch Lomond (traditional)
4. Friend of the Devil (Grateful Dead)
5. 1952 Vincent Black Lightning (Richard Thompson)
6. Doe Eyes in the Headlights (original)
7. Dead Skunk in the Middle of the Road (Louden Wainwright III)
8. Rambling Rover/All For Me Grog medley (Silly Wizard/trad) Vocal with bodhran
9. Baby One More Time (yes THAT one)
10. A Song For You (Leon Russel)

I noticed that I have three "death-themed" songs in a row (5, 6, & 7), but if I have learned anything from this board, it's that you can't go wrong with a dead animal song. wink

For my encore (there WOULD be an encore, wouldn't there?), I would do Black is the Color (trad) and Feeling Good Again (Robert Earl Keen).

Last edited by Kevin Edward Rose; 01/23/10 06:52 AM.

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Hey Sam, what a fun time killer....Covers? Sure, why not, although I would keep a few in reserve in case I had to follow one of you others and didn't wanna repeat one you had just done.

In no particular order:

Angel from Montgomery...Prine
Last thing on my mind...Paxton
Sisters of Mercy...Cohen
Tecumseh Valley...Everyone should have at least on Townes song
The Dutchman...Michael Smith
Amazing Grace(to the tune of House of the Rising Sun)
The Ballad of Penny Evans...Goodman
Dixie Chicken...An uptempo arrangement
Early morning rain...Lightfoot
A song for you...Russell

I would finish with "A Song for you", because the rest are songs that experience has taught me "chicks dig".....And with 5000 people in the audience, that comes down to 2500 women, and even I wink might have a chance at gettin' lucky with those odds.

Midnite


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Even though I warm up prior to gigs, I start my sets with songs that warm me up again. Up tempo stuff. Some of the covers are my arrangements and usually speeded up a tad. Plus I think you have to read the crowd. Somethings may not be appropriate for some audiences.

* Nobody Knows You- Clapton
* Resign Yourself- Dirt Band
* Glory Days- Springsteen
* Ice Cream Man- Van Halen
* Smoke, Smoke, Smoke- Cmdr Cody
* Motorcycle Mama- Young
* Alabama Getaway- Dead
* So Afraid- Outlaws
* Me and My Uncle- Dead
* Be My Yoko Ono- BNL

But thats all covers, and I never do all covers. At least half would be originals. Now if it was an all original show, it would be:

* Submarine Races
* Canal Street Shuffle
* The Things I Couldn't Say
* Big Red Bike
* Saturday Night
* Beach Whistles
* Hogarth's Curve
* Peaches and Cream
* Wives, Lovers and Mothers
* Memories

Thats my story and I'm stickin to it...




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I am glad this thread came along. I am going to work up that 10 song set that I mentioned above. Worked on two this morning. Maybe by summertime, I'll have a nice set put together.

Maybe I'll make my wife learn bass parts to all the songs -- she'll love that!!!! (in my best sarcastic tone).

Kevin


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It's been years since I did a single, though I used to make a living at it, just me and an old guitar, ha.

First off, I never wrote set lists for myself. For bands, sometimes, but not as a single. For me, it is much better to do a few songs and see how the audience reacts to them, then take it from there. However, one of my pet peeves is starting a thread based on some scenario with rules and having folks break them. I mean, if you don't want to play the game, don't cheat, just don't play the game smile

So here goes.

1. Don't Think Twice It's Alright
The Bob Dylan song, only I do it upbeat nearly bluegrass. It's familiar to an audience of my peer/age group.

2. Deep River Blues
The Doc Watson version of the Delmore Bros. classic. I used this song as the one song I could choose to audition for the movie "Living Proof, the Hank Williams Jr. Story" starring Richard Thomas (G'nite, John Boy). I got the part. It has some great fingerpicking stuff in it. Doc is a treasure.

3. Ramblin' Fever
Merle Haggard's classic. My version is a bit more of a modern approach to fingerpick guitar and is slower in tempo that the first two.

4. The Dutchman
Mike Smith wrote this, it's his biggest song. Steve Goodman covered it, I do it differently than either. I've played this song a LOT, and had a recording that got quite a bit of radio play on a syndicated folk show based in Chicago. It's laid back, a ballad.

5. Domino
The Van Morrison song, it's pretty "up." Love the guitar part to it.

6. Six Days on the Road
Not the Dave Dudley version. It's more rock, fast, almost frantic.

7. Wild Mountain Thyme
A wonderful song written by Irish singer, William McPeake, has a very "folky" feel, great sing along. I do this a capella and without a microphone. Often, I use it if I break a string, I'll stroll around the stage or, if easily accessible, through the audience, changing the string and singing the song. I try to get the audience to sing along. If people are talking I'll try to sneak right behind them and hit a loud note, the audience usually likes this. If I'm changing a string, I'll get back on stage and hold the last note out while stretching out the tag end of the string with my fingernail so as the last note dies the string snaps back coiled up. Cool trick, people like it. I've done it from Oregon to Switzerland.

8. Lady Be Good
The Cole Porter song, swing, good for scat singing.

9. Taking it to the Streets.
Last song. Doobie Brothers. It rocks, lends itself to fingerpicking so the bass and rhythm are played at the same time. Good sharp ending. Thank you all and goodnight.

10. If You Could Read My Mind.
Encore. Medium Tempo, mellows 'em out for the drive home.

Of course, in real life, I'd do more than half unknown songs by friends mixed with originals, also requests.


You've got to know your limitations. I don't know what your limitations are. I found out what mine were when I was twelve. I found out that there weren't too many limitations, if I did it my way. -Johnny Cash

It's only music.
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5000 people? Why covers? Music of itself can please people!

IF I ever had that performing opp, there's NO way I do covers. Most of the artist I would want to cover blow me out of the water anyway. I don't think a solo performance by me would "please the crowd" through songs they know.

So, IF I'm there to go on, here's my solo list, (piano and guitar). (I'll deal with any walkouts and/or cheers). As you said, "it's YOUR night"! And the following IS music of heartfelt writing and some craft, with passionate performance, so:

(Guitar): (Regular lighting)
1. Get Busy With It
2. All Over Again
3. Like a Laser in Space
4. This Was Meant To Be
5. Find My Eyes
(Piano): (softer lighting)
6. My 88 Keys
7. The Voice Of The Phils
8. We Just Gotta Be Friends
9. Lennon, More Than a Memory
(Guitar): Back to Regular lighting
10. Too Little Time

I would take it all in, thank everyone, (including Brian for asking me to play out again after many years not in the first place!) Then, I would have our band come out and play a family caused encore cheer of the songs:

1. You Gave This All To Me (John "Iggy" Taylor)
2. Light Of My Eyes, (Dennis Rooney)
3. I Can't Look Back, (Bruce "Doc" Banford
4. Something In The Air, (John Marnie)
5. Intro of members with the "Too Little Time" song choruses for the real ending.

(Hey,,,,you said it was my night, so our band plays too)! Deal with it!!! smile

Johnny D


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If they want a bunch of popular cover tunes, they're going to book someone other than me, because I'm not taking that gig.

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Then a ho' like me will gladly scarf it up. Musical integrity is overrated!


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You know the formula BC. Make 'em happy. Would like to hear Big Jim's opinion too.

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Thanks everybody. To confess my motives, I wanted to know what covers you like to do- or covers that "work" solo so that I could get a good list of songs that I might consider performing live and solo.

I am not a great musicologist so I don't know all the covers mentioned here. I would say that I have heard at least 60-70 percent of them and you'll have generated a really interesting list. I will give everyone the benefit of the doubt and assume that you have answered honestly- that you actually do play and love these songs. That is important because if for instance you listed a great song that really doesn't work as a solo, it would be damned frustrating to try to learn it. As I said before, I love "Hotel" California but I never did it till now because I couldn't make enough happen. But moving it to Am instead of Bm and adding a C harp, it is full enough and fun enough to pull off.

We all go through seasons as songwriters and musicians. Right now, I just enjoy the "sound" of my guitar, harp and voice together. I want to play great songs in public.

Here is my theory: You cannot write a good song unless you are intimately acquainted with good songs. Some people may be great musicologist and not play a note. Still they can be intimately acquainted with good music and could be great writers. I do think not being a player though is a disadvantage. People like me are only average listeners of other peoples music but we do tend to attempt to get "inside" the song by learning not just the notes but the mood and the spirit of the song. So I will be putting a lot of musical stuff in my ears for the next few weeks, thanks to you guys, and I would hazard to guess that I might wake up some morning and a great song will be going full bore in my head. I will think it was on the radio but it will just be in my head. I think you have to feed your creativity. There is no writer's block- there is just creative malnutrition. Feed you head!


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Don't Think Twice (It's Alright) - Bob Dylan
Bell Bottom Blues - Derek & The Dominoes
The Weight - The Band
Can't Help Falling In Love - Elvis Presley
Summertime - George & Ira Gershwin
Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow - Carole King
Ramblin' Man - Allman Brothers
House Of The Rising Sun - I never did know who wrote it. My dad taught it to me. Eric Burdon and The Animals covered it.
Lay, Lady, Lay - Bob Dylan
Evil Ways/She's Not There - Santana/Zombies
Something - The Beatles


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Originally Posted by Gary E. Andrews
House Of The Rising Sun - I never did know who wrote it. My dad taught it to me. Eric Burdon and The Animals covered it.
I believe it’s Traditional – although on the Animals (Eric Burdon) version Alan Price (keyboards) managed to get an arranger’s credit which I understand has served him very well over the years smile

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Originally Posted by Samuel (joe) Harris
There is no writer's block- there is just creative malnutrition.


Woah! Awesome quote.

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Originally Posted by Nigel Quin
Originally Posted by Gary E. Andrews
House Of The Rising Sun - I never did know who wrote it. My dad taught it to me. Eric Burdon and The Animals covered it.
I believe it’s Traditional – although on the Animals (Eric Burdon) version Alan Price (keyboards) managed to get an arranger’s credit which I understand has served him very well over the years smile


On a separate note, House of the Rising Sun was the first song I ever learnt on the Guitar smile

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According to Alan Lomax, he discovered House of the Rising Sun in Middlesborough, Kentucky in 1937. It was sung to him by a "ragged, mountain girl" smile

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Hmmm that's interesting Scott. Coincidence? The Animals came from Newcastle in the North East of England but just 35 miles away is a town called Middlesbrough smile

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Originally Posted by Bob Cushing
Then a ho' like me will gladly scarf it up. Musical integrity is overrated!


Life is too short to do crap I hate. If you like doing it, more power to you.

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Kurt,

What's your list then? Mine were all originals. I have to do originals 'cause I can't sound good on covers!

Kevin


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