Some friends of the band sent me what might be the earliest known recording of the Mysterious Beings at Someplace Else in Hickory, North Carolina in 1991. The band line up was a bit different then with Joe King on slide guitar and April Fulton on drums. There’s a bit of background noise as you’d expect from a live recording in a bar that did kind of resemble the one in the song. Sadly, Someplace Else is long gone, but the memories remain.
The other day, guitarist Dee Sharpe and I were sitting in Dee’s Granny’s kitchen in Broughty Ferry pondering the sad state of the world, when, as a way of soothing our frayed souls, he picked up his guitar and started playing the opening chords to our award worthy song, “I’m Here.” I joined in and it was not lost on either of us that such words of encouragement have rarely seemed more appropriate or needed.
So caught up were we in these thoughts that it took a moment to realise that our bassist, Juan Tusrivor had put down his cup of tea and joined in. The sparse arrangement, contrasting with the bigger sound of our original recording, somehow seemed more poignant, and I was glad that our team of Swedish sound engineers, Max and Minnie Mumsetting, with an eye and an ear towards a future documentary about the band, had their recording equipment set up next to the fridge and running 24 hours a day in order not to miss anything.
After the first verse, our agoraphobic Afghan drummer, Kit Bashir, also joined in from the linen closet where he spends most of his time. By the time the chorus came around, even our loathsome keyboard ace, Gene Poole-Skimmings, who had been eating pizza in the front room and dropping crumbs all over Mrs. Sharpe’s good sofa, had moved to her piano and started tickling the ivories, leaving marinara sauce all over them and his unmistakable mark on the song.
It’s here. The song that nobody asked for. The Mysterious Beings have dropped their Comfy Troosers as a brand new single. Choose your streaming service above and play, share, add to playlists or whatever it is that people do, or in our case, mostly have too much taste to do.
Before you listen to this masterpiece, I’d just like to say in our defence that it’s only two minutes long.
Fans of The Mysterious Beings will know that they have never been afraid to tackle the serious issues of the day, and it was only a matter of time before we got around to the urgent topic of comfortable trousers.
As we have all had to spend more time at home, much of it has inevitably involved sitting around on our arses, and never has the topic of comfortable trousers assumed such importance in our lives. Time then for a song, which was, of course, written while wearing those very comfy troosers in the illustration.
In both style and language, this song represents a return to our roots for guitarist Dee Sharpe and myself. To the other band members it represents nothing at all as they couldn’t understand much of it.
The other day, my daughter Niamh set off for Germany and other foreign lands. Seeing that the thought of her being gone for such a long time had got me down, my old friend Dee Sharpe, the band’s guitarist, reminded me that music is the best therapy in times like this. So I sat down and wrote a song. By the time Dee returned from a beer run, it was finished and, after downing the first of the beers, he picked up his guitar and joined me as we recorded it for her. Then we opened two more beers and raised them to Niamh and her great adventure. Then we had a few more beers to wish her bon voyage. The next thing I remember is Dee’s granny handing me a nice cup of tea where I lay on her couch and telling me she knew just how I felt – not my pounding head but my breaking heart.
The inspiration for our latest song came from my good friend and the band’s fiddle player, Beau Strokes. He turned up at my door the other day, asking to borrow my hedge trimmer. I had to say no, not because Beau is always borrowing things and seldom returns them, but because I happen to know he doesn’t have a hedge. What he does have is an ongoing dispute with his neighbor, Larry. Mountain folk have their own way of resolving disputes and, while I respect that, I had no wish for my hedge trimmer to be used as a weapon. Ironically, the feud began over that habit of Beau’s of borrowing things and generally being a scrounger. After he left, muttering something about how Bubba down the road has a big ass chainsaw, I sat down and wrote this song about how this whole thing started.
Our thanks to friend of the band, musical giant, proud redneck and Alabama’s favorite son, JAPOV for his…ahem…unique vocal contribution to this updated version of one our best loved songs. America may be deeply divided, but music can still bring us together….I hope.
The other day, the band and I got to talking about all the people we know who are terribly sad for one reason or another. Thinking about it made us sad too, so I wrote this song, which we recorded, maintaining social distancing by each of us being in a different room in guitarist Dee Sharpe’s granny’s house in Broughty Ferry. As I belted out the vocals in Granny Sharpe’s downstairs toilet, I thought about how much better the world would be if we took the time to tell each other this kind of thing sometimes.
Even mega-bands like The Mysterious Beings have to watch the pennies these days. We don’t give our social media intern Cher Maposte much of a budget to work with, so, when it comes to making videos, she is thrown back on using free clips from the Internet. Cher owes her position to being the only groupie ever to fall for the dubious charms of our keyboard player, Gene Poole-Skimmings, rather than to any aptitude for hard work, so she can’t be arsed actually finding clips that match our songs. This was a great source of frustration and friction within the band until guitarist Dee Sharpe and I decided to make the best of a bad situation by… well, the song explains it better than I could do here.
The video clips used in the song came from the trending videos at the home page of Pexels.com on the day I made the video.
A tribute to the heroes of Lake Travis, whose flotilla of freedom were all that stood between us and socialism on that fateful Saturday in September 2020. Several boats laden with swashbuckling warriors for freedom went down that day, carrying their precious cargo of sun block and Miller Lite to Davy Jones’ locker. We will not forget you and how you put your lives on the line on the reservoir of doom.