Songs from "In My Place"
lyrics written by Peto Gerth
Your general "I just left a few very emotional relationships behind and now I'm feeling all grown up and away from them" self-empowerment anthem. Feel it!
come easy...do you say?
Simple things just come to you
Memories are nice, but then
Back at the time I wrote this song I had read an article in the Advocate magazine about James Dale, an Eagle Scout leader who did all these wonderful things as a scout for many years but was kicked out when it became known to higher ups in the organization that he was gay. His discrimination case against the Scouts became famous and went all the way to the Supreme Court. I found it an amazing example of just how stupid bigotry like this is and wanted to write about it, so I did. The song became a hit at gay-marketed internet stations the summer following the release of the CD and I found myself the proud owner of a #3 song at gaybc.com radio (sadly a now-defunct station) for their "Songs Of Summer" countdown. I even beat out Melissa Ethridge who was at #4! Yay!
with the uniform?
What's with the attitude?
Many times I’ve watched just to see what you think you can do
So what’s the real matter here?
This song is really an essay on how we are all either repetitions or progressions of previous generations. Behaviors and attitudes are learned. And we all suck in some way or another but can be really really great in other ways. Basically, no one person is better than another even though we all have ways we annoy each other. Or something like that...
and shameless teens
Power suits and their corporate ways
So here we are ... facing life ... together — together
Well, I could sit back and let it go
So, who are we, the Americana hopeless?
In My Place is a song I hold close to my heart for many reasons: I stretched musically within the pop realm and completely rewrote the structure of the song specifically for this CD (I had played a previous version in live shows before the recording); it's also fun as hell to sing...but most of all I basically got to yell "fuck you" in the form of a fun pop song to a past relationship that was very emotionally distructive for years. Vindication can be fun!!!
many days wasted?
You tell me that you love me
Have you ever tried to listen to
If you try to hold me back again
I think it’s just a big mistake
So get yourself out of my face
Ok, forgive me here, but this lyrical slice of cheese became one of my favorite songs on this CD. When I originally wrote the song, it was a total fantasy/thought-up kind of thing and I knew as I was writing it that I was bordering on a fine line that could easily slide me into the cheesy love song realm -- especially because the music of the first version was slow and ballady. And each time I played it I kept thinking that it wanted to make me throw up...and yet there was still something that bound me to the song. Finally one night I had a musical stroke of genius (well, ok, genius in MY world) and just started banging the song out -- playing it faster and faster until it just sounded FUN. It took away the overly seriousness of singing a cheesy ballad and made it just a simple, sweet pop song. I loved doing the vocal arrangements as a 3 part harmony in the chorus when recording it in the studio. Also, it was the only song on "In My Place" in which I played lead guitar -- which always feels like a major accomplishment!
say I think of you is like saying the world is round
To say I feel for you would not be sharing all I have inside
To say I think of you, well it’s like saying the world is round
Well, this song had a magnetism that I never expected. As I wrote and recorded it, it was just a fun little ditty about my move from Los Angeles to Seattle. When my bro-in-law Erik came in to record the fun slap-happy, wisky drums followed by he, Maxi and I all having a room-wide percussion session, and Chad doing the silly, squirty trumpet parts, well, the song sort of transended into another life form...and to this day, it's the one song that people love the most. It became the audience favorite at all the shows and the song with the melody and toe-tapping beat they couldn't get out of their heads, even if they couldn't remember the long-ass title.
drove over two thousand miles, three states to get to me
Trippin’ up a bit has taught me well and now my eyes are open wide
I drove over two thousand miles when I thought I never would