JPF Home Page
The goal of our "Song Challenges" is to write songs/lyrics on demand within set parameters. We don't critique each other's songs in this thread (but you can say you like someone's song if you want to.) Please post your original works. If you have already written a song/lyric that fits within the parameters, please feel free to post it.

Here are the parameters: Write an advice or a "how to" song. It could be either good or bad advice or giving directions. It could directly address the listener or it could tell a story. The advice could be about anything. It doesn't have to include the word advice but there should be examples of behavior or thinking or examples etc. that would imply advice or directions are being given. Some hook ideas if you want them: Do What I Say Not What I Do, Recipe for Disaster, Took Your Advice, Listen To Me, Keep This In Mind, How To Live Large, The Easy Way Out, Home Improvement 101, just about anything.

Good luck to you!
Jean, here's one--and no, it wasn't written specifically for this challenge (but you said an old one might be okay). Looking through my stuff, I find I've written a fair number of what might be called "advice" songs--though I would neither expect nor recommend anybody take my advice.

This one's "Cuddle in the Darkness." I guess a frank solicitation for a one-night stand constitutes "advice." (Didn't work, by the way.) URL of the recording is Lyrics follow. Thanks for doing this.


[4/4, med. two-step]

–J. Wrabek

I recognized those lonely eyes when I first came in here;
They're the same ones that stare back at me each morning in the mirror;
And that shiver looked familiar, when that couple passed you by–
Like you realized you could spend your life with Lonesome by your side.

There's a chill that's grown inside us, born of all those times alone;
Sometimes y'just can't sleep at night if you do it on your own;
Can we cozy up together? Maybe keep each other warm?
It's been so long since we been held in someone else's arms.

And I'll say the same sweet nothings that you've prob'ly heard before,
And I promise that I'll hold your hand as we walk out the door;
Ain't sayin' you're the one for me, ain't askin' you to stay–
Just to cuddle in the darkness till the darkness goes away.

There's a little place just down the road where they don't know you or me;
We can check in as a couple, like they do it on T.V.;
Can't promise any fireworks, I think they've all been burned–
But I can offer a little comfort, if I can get some in return.


All that I'm suggesting is we partner for tonight;
That chill of ours won't go away till someone holds us tight;
Hey, I'll be yours if you'll be mine, until the break o' dawn–
Let's pretend for just one night that we never sleep alone.



© 2005 J. Wrabek dba Outside Services Ltd. All the usual rights reserved just in case.

Well, Joe. I am stunned. (Technically, the let's pretend line slides this into the parameters.) This is a song about mutual vulnerability. I'm impressed.
Thanks, Jean. This was the one serious song we put on the last album. The bass player cried when she heard it for the first time.

Umm, guys...? Feeling kind of alone here...

I know. They'll probably come around later. Probably still trying to wrap presents. You didn't send anybody those mysterious cookies did you, Joe?
No, Jean--I restrained myself. I baked cheesecakes instead. Secret recipe (best not to ask). Merry, merry to you and yours.

Thank you and the same to you.
Merry Christmas Jean! smile We're celebrating tommorow since they were caling for not so nice ice today so glad to oblige. I offer two for the price of one for your "how to" category (how to get to her heart) and one "giving advice" (warning against a certain kind of guy) from my collection. Have a wonderful day with loved ones!

"How To Song"

"Wildflowers" (needs country melody someone)
(c)2009 Lynn Orloff

I got myself a brand new beau, he spoils me good Lord it shows
He sends me long stemmed roses everyday
And while I think it's really sweet, it doesn't sweep me off my feet
And so I had to tell him right away

Just give me wildflowers that you picked on your own
Don't want those store-bought roses you ordered on the phone
No fancy dyed carnations, all I want are God's creations
Give me wildflowers if you wanna melt my heart

If you think I'd be impressed, then I suggest that you think less
If a fancy box arrives on my front porch
All I want is a bouquet, that you hand picked on your way
All I want are wildflowers everyday

(or this verse)
I'm not one to break tradition but I'll stick to my position
I'm not like the other girls in this regard
If you want to melt my heart, there's a real good way to start
All I want are wildflowers everyday

Repeat Chorus

If makin' me happy is what you have in mind
Those roadside jewels are just the thing, they'll charm me everytime

Final Chorus
Just give me wildflowers, field daisies nothing more
Don't want expensive blooms delivered to my door
All I need are nature's finest
If you want to please your highness (or) show some kindness
Just give me wildflowers yeah their just fine by me
Just bring me wildflowers yeah their just what I need!

"Giving Advice Song"

"There Ain't No Mr. Perfect" (pop/country female(needs melody)
(c)2009 Lynn Orloff

Listen girlfriends, gather round
There's somethin to discuss
C'mon ladies settle down
Be quiet don't you fuss

I have some female wisdom
I'd like to share with you
Oh you can take or leave it
It's just my point of view

There ain't no Mr. Perfect, yeah there ain't no Mr. Right
And if there was he took a train, he's long gone out of sight
Mr. Rough Around the Edges is the man you want to pick
He might need Manners 101, but his loyalty will stick

You might have to remind him
To close his mouth when he might yawn
Or when he's done with toothpaste
To put the lid back on

Or when you're at a restaurant
To please pull out your chair
And not to answer that front door
In just his underwear

Repeat Chorus

But do not be discouraged
It's really not bad news
That shining knight in armour
Might just give you the blues

That Mr. Walk on Water
Will usually start to sink
Mr. Rough Around the Edges
Is how you wanna' think

Your shining diamond in the rough, just needs a polish and a buff..

Repeat Chourus

Tag (speaking)
Honey did you leave up the toilet seat?
Why is there mud on my carpet?
Thanks Lynn. You did double duty on this one. Like the manners 101 line.
Lynn, I hear music for that first one. Want it?

Sure Joe but if I may be so bold I'm hoping you're hearing it uptempo since I think the lyrics dictate such. Maybe our Polly girl would be even be willing to sing it for us w/some fun attitude wink . There is a choice of two verses for the 2nd verse also so we have some flexibility there. Have fun cooland thanks Joe.

Lynn smile
Thanks, Lynn. Yes, I was thinking definitely uptempo. This has the feel of a bluegrassy love song (not technically bluegrass, because nobody dies in the last verse). Actually, I was thinking both the "choices" would work as separate verses; when you're doing something fast, there's room to fit in more words. What'cha think?

Hey there Joe, I guess see where the music takes you and maybe we could use both verses but usually it's verse Chorus verse Chorus bridge Chorus or verse verse Chorus verse verse Chorus bridge Chorus. Also the 3rd verse says alot of the same thing as the 2nd verse only differently, but we can play around and see what works and feels/sounds right. If we only use two verses we just have to decide which verse (2 or 3) sounds/sings better w/the overall flow.

Best of creativity and thank you,
Lynn smile
I know. I'll try to have something recorded tonight to send you and you can see (well, hear) from there. Thanks.

Lynn, I sent you something. Let me know what'cha think.

Hi Joe, just got it. I'll send you a pm. Thanks buddy.

Lynn smile
Thanks for posting, Colin. Cute song. There are some things I haven't done. I have sung on a stage, painted a picture, sailed on an ocean, studied all night long, tried to teach, and wished on a star. grin
Lynn and Joe, on the first one, I agree with Joe, both verses would work (keep them both). I would love to sing it! Send it to me Joe! smile
Polly, I will do dat. Same process as before. You'll get a cut of me singing it (destroy after listening), one of just the music, and lyrics. Lynn, you heard, right?

Here's Lynn's "Wildflowers" with Joe's musication and my singing (I have a bad cold, so forgive me!)
Hey every one, just had a listen.

What cold...All singers say that...hehe

I really loved it from start to finish.

A great collab.

God Bless Roy
Wonderful example of collaboration. Great job, folks!
Thanks Jean! You're the one that got the party started so you deserve the biggest thanks! I call this spontaneous combustion when things like this come together. We are actually in the midst of trying to refine the song alittle bit since Polly is over her cold and we are slooowing it down just a bit.

Thanks for pokin' and stokin' us. You keep the fire goin'! This bluegrass stuff has me talkin' all countree! smile

Lynn smile
Hoping to record this again tomorrow. Joe lowered it a half step and slowed it down a might (I'm talkin' countree too) so hopefully, it will sound better this time around and I'll annunciate better. smile Hey, this is why I LOVE this place...learning all the time!
© Just Plain Folks Music Organization Message Boards