My wife bought me a mandolin for my birthday – she’s so cool! I’ve been noodling around with it, learned to play the ending to “Maggie Mae”, things like that. I think I’m going to love recording with it, and incorporating it into songs here and there.
Last weekend I also read the Replacements “biography”, “All Over But the Shouting” – which sparked so many memories for me. Not because I lived it – I didn’t. I didn’t even know who the band was until my senior year of highschool, when a friend kept hounding me about this “Minneapolis punk band”. Like I care – I don’t even like punk rock.
But they weren’t punk rock. Not to me. Songs like “Answering Machine”, “Sixteen Blue”, “Skyway”, and at the risk of sounding uncool, “I’ll Be You”, showed me they were a band that could write songs. Great songs. I never knew about their legendary drunken mess shows, until long after that was old to them. I never saw it. I saw them live once, on the last tour, and that was amazing to me. They just were so – REAL to me. And reading this book, brought back back memories for me, of being a kid in a band, ready to take on and conquer the world. Of being confused as a teenager, because I was too shy to pick up girls, because (in my mind), nobody understood me, and because I was going to show the world some day. Or something like that.
So since reading the book, and of course listening to and apprecaiting again how great their songs are – along with learning how to play this cool new instrument – somehow, I got this brilliant idea to try and make my own little rendition of a Mats’ song. I was listenig to the Hootenany album, and “Within Your Reach” came on. Such a beautiful song…… So simple, so raw, so pure. Yes, it has a drum machine on it – but they ain’t hidin’ it. It actually makes the song that much better.
So I started fiddling with my mandolin, and figured out how to arrange this song on it. I don’t think I did so well – I fumble my chord fretting even on guitar, even more-so on the mandolin. But you may think it’s kinda cool, I dunno. It’s a great song, no matter the treatment, I think. So if you don’t throw up when you hear it, great. I hope you enjoy!
You can hear the Mats’ version here:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sOPIySsXZlA/
And – if you are around Minneapolis Friday night, there is a Replacements Tribute show going on at First Avenue! Check it out! Sadly, I can’t make it. So if you go, please tell me how great it was.
And thank you baby for the mandolin! I love love love it!!!