my parents were against toy guns. they even had a sticker on the door saying: "santa doesn't buy war toys." they bought me a nylon string guitar when i was ten and since everybody else had a toy gun i used the guitar as a weapon and shot up the neighborhood. the local urchins & i reenacted scenes from platoon and other then fashionable vietnam war movies in the streets of waramanga. it was carnage. milo and weetbix for breakfast and then the genocides would begin. one time toby & i dug a trench in the front yard and we hit some kind of concrete bunker about a metre down. fearing punishment we filled in the hole, but i still wonder what was in that bunker.
so i didn't play guitar much, i just shot baddies. or goodies. it depended which side i was on, on any given day. then i wrote a protest song against culinary corporatism called 'macdonalds chuck' which i recorded on a dictaphone just using mouth percussion and raspberries and vomit sounds. the rest is history. as in that was my first song, and then i was hooked, and twenty-five years later i've probably written 2000 or more and i only started playing guitar to accompany my mouth noises (i thought of it as 'singing' at the time).
first show was at a school fete. the organiser congratulated me afterwards and i told him off because nobody listened. it was his job to shut the fuckers up, not mine. i was just a wee boy in a big indifferent world, but i didn't know it yet.
i had a guitar teacher for a while. he soon realised it was pointless teaching me about quavers, crotchets and time signatures because all i wanted to do was write songs. so he'd send me off with some new chords each week and i'd come back with some new songs. when i was fourteen i played him one called "hammer me", which actually transformed his features and at the end of it he seemed genuinely taken aback. i went on to play it with a little grunge band at my highschool assembly and my testicles dropped during the chorus and for the first time i got the vocal squeaks and one thousand teenagers pointed and laughed.
i didn't care. i was a rock star. i shot em with my guitar and those little cunts had my vocal squeaks in their pea-brains for at least the time it took to get from the gym to class.
fast forward 2019 and i read a thelonious monk biography and the rest is history. i buy an 88-key keyboard and start learning rachmaninoff's prelude in c sharp minor. i guess i worked backwards. i still didn't really know what anything meant but after a few months i could play the piece. now i'm back at square one.
i love playing the piano. i love the fact i can look at a score and almost hear it in my head now.
but i don't really write songs anymore. i can still hear those thousand children laughing and pointing at me and it makes boohoo in my panties.
everyone's dying and the world is forever changed. what is there to possibly write a three chord song about?