I wrote this song in the 90's with a friend of mine Bobby Hart of Boyce and Hart fame. Bobby had also written and produced the Monkey's during the 60's and co-wrote their big hits. After the song was finished I never did anything with it. Years later while composing the songs for my album "Connected" in my studio I came upon a unique rhythm pattern on my Korg M3 synthesizer. I was trying to compose a song that would fit with the rhythm I was playing. The song "Satisfied" came to my mind and it fit perfectly with the rhythm I was playing-even though it had a different feel than the original version. When I finished the track with all my synthesizers and vocals, I asked Ringo Starr if he wanted to play drums on it. I had been working with Ringo on his latest album and co-wrote the song "Peace Dream" as well as singing backing vocals on it. He listened to track and agreed to play drums on it. I then contacted Skunk Baxter of the Doobie Brothers and Steely Dan fame and he came over and played rhythm guitar on the track. Finally, my friend Joe Walsh of the Eagles played a guitar solo on the song and Valerie Pingston and Lisa Vaughn added backing vocal parts to my own backing vocals and it was completed. I was very happy with the results and I released it as the first single in the USA as the song has a very positive lyrical message which I wanted people to hear.
"Get your hands up"
I wrote this song alone and got the idea for it while I was working in my studio on a rhythm using multiple delay echos for the intro of the song. I then came up with the synth bass line and the rest of the song and melody fell into place. I wrote the lyric while driving to Colorado on a holiday. As the lyrical ideas came to me while looking at the beautiful scenery, my wife wrote them down as I haven't yet mastered the art of driving and writing lyrics at the same time! The song is about celebrating the joy of life-dancing and singing and living in the magic of the moment. It's also a funky track and once again Valerie and Lisa helped my on backing vocals. Will Kennedy of the jazz fusion band "The Yellow Jackets" played Roland V drums on the track following the patterns I had programmed on synth drums and adding his own creations.
"Under your spell"
This is another song I wrote by myself. I wrote the music to this song one day in my studio and wrote the lyrics while on a plane ride to Nashville. It was originally a poem which I edited into a song format. It's a love song about the great healing power of love in human and divine relationships and the importance of faith and trust in life. The track has a mystical feel to it and I used electronic sounds to create this mood. I played all the instruments and did all the backing vocals myself.
"No One does it better"
This is another song I wrote alone, played all the instruments, and sang all the backing vocals. The drums were played by Will Kennedy. This song was another example of my studio writing where the idea came to me from rhythms I created on my synths. I then came up with the bass line and the song fell into place. The lyrics I also wrote on that same trip to Colorado in my car while driving through the inspiring scenery. Nature inspires me a lot when I write. The song is about finding the perfect partner in life and the joy one derives from that relationship. It's also about commitment to each other-sailing down the ocean of life together. This is one of my favorite songs on the album as it is funky and musically interesting to me.
"Can't find no mercy"
I co-wrote this song with Oliver Leiber, the son of Jerry Leiber of Leiber and Stoller fame in the 60's. Oliver also produced and wrote Paula Abdul's first multi platinum album. We wrote the song together in his studio and it had a different feel than the version on my album. I liked the song when we first wrote it but didn't like the feel and direction it had. I was in my studio experimenting with rhythms one day and came up with the bass line. I then added a clavinet part and fit the song Oliver and I had written together into the track. It's very gospel sounding and was also inspired my one of my favorite musicians Stevie Wonder. Again, Will Kennedy played drums and Lisa and Valerie added backing vocal parts.
"Life's not a battlefield"
I wrote this song while on a writing trip to Nashville with a writer named Joe Beck. It's the first song we had ever written together and I finished it when I got home. The lyrical message of the song is about the mutual feelings all people share no matter what race or creed-how some of us put up barriers to hide behind. It's about the need to open our hearts to one another, to help uplift each other and to love and be loved. I sang all the backing vocal parts and played all the instruments. The track has a gospel feel as well and I was very happy with the results. It's one of my favorite tracks on the album.
"Gimme some time"
I wrote this song with John Lang of Mr.Mister fame. John wrote the lyrics to all their big hits. I like to go to Sardinia, Italy on holiday and do a lot of my writing there. I wrote most of the song there on an acoustic guitar which I do a lot. When I got back home to my studio I created the track with synths around the song I had written in Sardinia. John then helped me finish the lyric. I had Skunk Baxter play rhythm guitar and a solo as well on the track and Will played drums. The rest of the instruments and backing vocals I did myself. I particularly like this song for it's groove-it makes you want to dance.
I wrote this song alone while recently in Sardinia one summer afternoon on my acoustic guitar. The lyrical message is about the feeling of being connected to God, the universe, all people and all living things. We all have moments in our lives when we have this experience of being connected, whether it's looking at a beautiful sunset or hearing a great song, meeting a special person or whatever. It's also about letting go of fear and hopelessness and having faith until you feel that connectedness in life. I took demo version of the song into the studio and found an unusual pulsating rhythm on my Korg M3 and that became the structural basis of the track. Will Kennedy played drums and I played all the other instruments.
This song I also wrote alone while on holiday in Sardinia on acoustic guitar. It's very special to me because it's a song about my first grand child-Kirra. When I wrote it she was only a few months old and I was missing her terribly being thousands of miles away from her. The lyric is about the very special love one feels for a new soul arriving in the family and how that changes one's whole life which she has. When I got home I wasn't sure whether I would put the song on my album as it was so personal, but I'm glad I did as I feel it's very special musically. I was always inspired by the Beatles song "She's leaving home" from Sergent Pepper and that inspired the direction of the track. I played a harp part on one of my synths and then added orchestral strings and cellos with the help of my engineer Rob Calhoun who was classically trained at Berkley school of music.
"You make me feel better"
This is the last track on the album and I wrote the song again while spending time in Sardinia on acoustic guitar. I wrote the lyric again while on a trip to Colorado. The song is about living in the bright and dark side of life and about being lost sometimes in the dark, feeling alone and helpless. But by having faith to keep moving through the dark periods relying on your loved one or God to help you make it through is the saving grace. We all have that choice in life. I brought the song home and built the track around the intro string rhythmic part and Joe Walsh added a great solo on the ending. The rest of the instruments and backing vocal parts I did alone.