This song was recorded during the ongoing lockdown in Toronto, and it’s been quite a struggle: a string on my guitar broke, so I’ve been playing with only 5 strings; then my laptop acted up and wouldn’t turn on at times… but the hardest thing was to concentrate and complete the task.
With everything going on in the world right now, there are moments one may ask oneself, “Ah, what’s the point?” Sounds of ambulance siren at night, a few panic attacks, and my sleep cycle been out of whack. But there were excellent moments too: one late night of recording I suddenly discovered how to strum the guitar with a “swing” feel, I was so excited I couldn’t sleep! I sent a demo of the song to my sister, and she really liked it. She let the kids listen to it, and they liked it too. Then I decided to cut my own hair, halfway through I was scared, but I couldn’t possibly stop there until it was done. I’ve been dancing around the house a lot these days, with my wireless headphone on, and it helps me sleep better, slim down nicely, and improve my sense of rhythm.
I wrote this song back in Oct 2018. It was the first song I’ve ever written, both lyrics and music, hence the title: Song One. The song sounds like a heartache, but it’s actually about a failed film project. I spent five years to write a movie script, my first ever, for an actress that inspired me, and then another year trying to contact her and make the film. The script was both brilliant and terrible! Looking back, it was no wonder she wasn’t interested! But what shattered me the most was the realization that she was no longer the same person that had inspired the script. She had changed with time and became quite a dull version of herself. And there was nothing left for me to do.
So I put the project aside, and almost immediately started to write poems and songs, which I’d never done before, as a much needed new creative outlet. There wasn’t much ambition at the beginning. Almost none. But one song came, and then another, and another…
The very first song I wrote was actually Song Zero (Angel Mine), with lyrics by Hank Williams, from his lost notebook. I used 3 simple chords: [C], [F], [G] to write the music, recorded it on my iPhone, and sent it to my family. They seemed to like it. My oldest sister said if I’d had proper training, I could’ve been a musician! Mom said it would’ve conveyed more emotions if I’d written my own lyrics!
I thought to myself, “Hmm, Big Sis, I think I can write music with no proper training!” and “Hmm, Mom… I didn’t even know if I could write music, let alone both music AND lyrics!” But what Mom said made me think, and so I tried it. And thus Song One (You’re Far Gone) was written. At the time I didn’t have much sense of rhythm, and didn’t know how to arrange a song in a time signature. So I wrote the song with no time signature, and played the guitar with a simple down strum on every beat. I still did that for a long time afterwards, only until recently when I started to focus on learning more about rhythms and time signatures. So I added a rhythm to the song.
These days I’m quite happy writing and singing my own songs. And sometimes I fancy the day when I can call myself a musician.
Song One (You’re Far Gone)
Written and performed by Gnocchi Artyst.
Subtitled in English and Vietnamese.
Copyright © 2019 — Please do not use without permission.