Week Fifteen

I’d Rather Leave You Now
By Kim Davidson
© 2010

GIRL: Lately it’s like you and I are strangers
I try to connect, but I seem to miss the mark
BOY: We go through the motions, and sometimes it’s all right
But I don’t think it’s a good sign, that it takes so much work
And I keep hoping you’ll make me feel needed
Like back when things were new, and I was so sure of you
GIRL: And I keep hoping you’ll stop pulling back when we get close
‘Cause I know what’ll happen if we keep heading down this road…

CHORUS (BOTH): I’d rather leave you now… than find myself hating you
For all the stupid things we can’t get past, although we’re trying to
If it’s only gonna get worse from here on out…
I would rather leave you now.

BOY: Suddenly nothing I do or say is right
I want to understand, I want to prove myself to you
BOTH: Every conversation spirals down into a fight
GIRL: I don’t know how we got so lost, and I don’t know what to do
BOTH: ‘Cause there was a time when all we did was laugh
GIRL: And sleeping wasn’t what we did when we went to bed
BOY: I hate to think that everything that’s good is in the past
When I used to be excited about all that lay ahead…

CHORUS (BOTH): I’d rather leave you now… than find myself hating you
For all the stupid things we can’t get past, although we’re trying to
If it’s only gonna get worse from here on out…
I would rather leave you now

BRIDGE: GIRL: I’ve never been the type to quit and walk away…
BOY: I don’t want to walk away…
GIRL: But that alone isn’t reason enough for either of us to stay…
BOY: So give me a reason to stay…

CHORUS (BOTH): Or I’d rather leave you now… than find myself hating you
For all the stupid things we can’t get past, although we’re trying to
If it’s only gonna get worse from here on out…
I would rather leave you now.
I would rather leave you now.

So this was the song I was all excited about last week where I couldn’t get all the details hammered out in time. Anytime you add another person into the mix it becomes a whole new animal. Funny how just the addition of ONE person can change the equation so much.

But Ryan was totally game, and I was psyched because he’s really got the sound I was looking for: full and rich and a bit of a southern twang. As he laughingly put it, “The fake country accent that I have when I sing.” I have me one of those, so I can totally relate. It happens.

What we had working against us was time, of course. Being the fabulous people we are, we are both incredibly busy, so finding a time where we were both available was the tricky part. That time turned out to be about 10:00 in the morning. For musicians, that is the crack of dawn. Not the best or easiest time to be wailing at the top of your range, but that’s what we were stuck with, so we made it work as best we could. Needless to say there was coffee involved.

It was a fun morning though, because Ryan has this awesome English Springer Spaniel named Gus, and Gus and I really fell in love with each other. You’ll catch sight of him a couple times in the video outtakes. He was pushing the music stand around at one point, out of frame, and we couldn’t stop laughing. He was completely adorable and if he’d been smaller, I might have snuck him out of there in my purse. You’ll notice you can see a music stand in the video. After a couple takes of us bending over and squinting at the lyrics (I shoulda used a bigger font!) I decided to shatter the illusion and just let the stand be visible. There were actually two stands, but Ryan has a cooler one than I do, and he could tilt his back and adjust it out of frame more easily than I could. I guess that’s what happens when you work at The Music Emporium. The other factor is that I was taking advantage of the forced perspective technique I’d learned from watching all the bonus features on the “Lord of the Rings” DVDS, so I was farther from the camera than he was, and therefore so was my stand. Which made it harder to hide.

So this being my first ever male-female duet, there was a bit of a learning curve for me. I think my approach might be different in the future. It’s amazing how much the different timbres of voice can change the way a song sounds. For example, in trying to see if the song would even work, I made two recordings. First I made one just of the basic melody, all the way through. So I sang both parts in my own register. When I sang the first pre-chorus from “Like back when things were new, and I was so sure of you” into “And I keep hoping you’ll stop pulling back when we get close” in my register, it sounded like the melody was coming down, which was the opposite of what I really was going for. However, when I sang the male half down an octave (trying to sound like a guy—which was pretty awful, and you’ll never hear that recording), the female part then sounded like it was going up when it came in. So it was interesting to me to hear that.

Of course, being a chick I really don’t know the parameters of men’s voices the way maybe I should have before setting out to write a song with parts for both. This is where my relative lack of music theory bites me in the ass. Ryan was such a good sport though—and I really had him singing every inch of his range, from low to high. And at 10:00 in the morning. THANK YOU, RYAN! You made the song, and I owe you a beer.

So that’s my first duet. There just may be more to come…

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