2013 30 Sep

Listen to the Podcast below:                                                                                                                                                                                                          

Over the past six weeks, Jay Daniels of the Muffin Junkee Serves Tunes with Your Tea show out of British Columbia and I have been working on a podcast that is about my “Busted In Bulgaria” album that I released in 2008.  In 2013, things are still a bit uncertain in Bulgaria.  That is why I chose this particular album to do a show.  During my 2006 – 2008 Peace Corps service, times were quite uncertain also.

After my first year as an English teacher, the second year started with a bang when there was a country-wide teacher strike in all of Bulgaria.  As a volunteer, my job was to come to class everyday whether the students were there or not.  Mostly, they were not and so I seized the opportunity to write down some of my thoughts on the situation and that would become the basis for much of the Busted in Bulgaria album.

The podcast is a selection of songs that both Jay and I compiled.  We chose the following songs:

1. Listen To Your Voice
2. Hoola Hoop Girl
3. Rico
4. Breaking the Language Barrier
5. 8A Class
6. Stachkata
7  Survival Mode
8. What’s Your Role in Life
9. Be Real True
10.I want to go to the Moon (2013)
11.The Sun Shines Today

In the show, you will hear commentary about each song which focuses on what was going on at the time of its writing and recording.  Also included in the podcast are some surreal psychedelic skits and a nice segment on Bulgarian breakfast foods to go along with Jay’s breakfast theme.

cover

Please check out some of Jay’s other podcasts at his buzzsprout site.  You may follow him at his Muffin Junkee Tunes for Tea Facebook page.  Or at ITunes.

I hope you will enjoy.

 

 

 

 

 

Hard at Work                                          Boza-man Statue – Radomir, BG

crazy hair jim and boza man

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Download Busted in Bulgaria here:

Published under Good Music, Lifesend this post
2013 17 Sep

See Lyrics and Original song below…

I recorded the original song called “Survival Mode” while living overseas in Bulgaria in 2007.  At the time, I felt everything was caving in on me as I was a Peace Corps TEFL Volunteer.  Mostly it was the wall of sound that I was dealing with in the classroom where I taught.  Probably Phil Spector would have dug the wall of sound.

At the time while overseas, I was paying close attention to American politics.  The song was written shortly after Andrew Meyer’s “Don’t Tase Me Bro!” incident.

The times were definitely a time when the basic American liberties such as freedom of speech was rapidly disappearing as is evident by what happened to Andrew for asking questions at a John Kerry discussion at a University of Florida forum.

It was like every day I’d read about another incident of one being tased.  Starting in 2011, the new thing is people getting pepper sprayed.  College campuses have always been  a place of dialogue but the powers that be want passive subjects and in the particular the incident at University of California at Davis sticks out as something to be concerned about.  One police officer very casually sprayed students who were sitting there peacefully during an Occupy protest.

Currently, I’m working on a podcast with a show in British Columbia for my album “Busted in Bulgaria” that came out in 2008.  I’ll be talking about what the background of the songs where and how I came to record them.  The podcast should be out by the last week in September. Survival Mode was one of the songs on the BIB album.  I felt that it still has a good message today and that is why I re-recorded it.  The original was recorded on a laptop in a rather haphazard way with only a handheld microphone and an acoustic guitar.  The updated version has electric guitar, bass, keyboard, percussion and background vocals provided by my wife.

 

We’ve got to preserve our health.
It is all for ourself.
People are running scared.
Just like they haven’t cared.

Some turn to the booze.
This isn’t what I choose.
Which is the way?
Certainly there’s a new day.

Chorus

We’re all in survival mode.
We carry big load.
We’re all in survival mode.
We carry big load.

Arguments and tempers flare.
This I don’t wish to bear.
There’s no point to this.
Better avoid and miss.

We live within our cave.
Wishing only to save.
Our egos cause problems.
With pride we wear our emblems.

Chorus

We’re all in survival mode.
We carry big load.
We’re all in survival mode.
We carry big load.

We make shady deals.
so we can eat our meals.
We keep up the front.
In our power hunt.

Have faith in one another.
We’re brother and sister.
Fight through the pain.
We’re all the same.

Words and Music by Jim Guittard 2007

Published under Lifesend this post
2013 3 Jul

I wrote the basic lyric on June 14, 2010 in Sofia, Bulgaria at an OMV gas station.  This was a place I came quite often to create lyrics.  Posted below is a picture of the scribbled lyrics from that day.  The chords that I have written on the side are not the chords of this song.  There is another version of the song that I did but it may be lost.

Cubical Maniacs

How’s life in the box?
Can you open up your locks?
You’re losing so much time.
Isn’t this your prime?

What’s your reward?
Ending up in the mental ward?.
Isn’t life in the box a pain?

Ride the ladder up.
Ride the ladder down.
It’s never gonna end cause you’re chasing the wind.

Cubical maniacs jumping around
Lurking, scheming to win.
only to lose, only to lose…

Gotta win the spot.
You know you’ve always been bought
Watch out for the little hacks,
They’ll stab you in the back.

They say you should be a lawyer.
But you’re more like Tom Sawyer.
They say do not do that.
But you wanna to do that.

Cubical maniacs jumping around
Scheming, lurking about.
only to lose, only to lose
Only to lose.

Ride the ladder up.
Ride the ladder down.
Go all around.
Never gonna end cause you’re chasing the wind.

How’s life in the box?
Can you open up the locks?

Words and Music by Jim Guittard 2013

cubical maniacs

Published under Musicsend this post
2010 23 Aug

 AMERICAN alternative musician to guest Tangra Studios!minstrel to guest at the Tangra Mega Rock studio today!!!02.08.2010

AMERICAN alternative musician to guest Tangra Studios!minstrel to guest at the Tangra Mega Rock studio today!!!

Jim Guittard made it big a couple of years ago, after annihilating all competition on his magic carpet ride to the position of English teacher at a Pernik grammar school. He even wrote and sang a song in support of the teachers’ strike.

He then made a live appearance in the Tangra Mega Rock studio and as he was leaving an entire onion fell out of his trousers, which we found rather amusing.

This, in turn, inspired him to write the song ‘Onion Peel’, which has been in rotation at TMR since then. That was back in the Autumn of 2008…

Today Jim Guittard is back and will be guesting in the TMR studio at noon!

ДЖИМ ГИТАРД

source: http://radiotangra.com

Published under Musicsend this post
2010 22 Jul


Simplistic Psychedelic instrumental I wrote and recorded in Portland, Oregon in April of this year. The video was filmed in Simeonovo, Bulgaria by Katia in July.

To download the song for free go here:
http://www.archive.org/download/FreakOut/FREAKOUT.mp3

Published under Musicsend this post
2010 19 Jul

Simple song that I wrote in tribute a country-wide tradition in Bulgaria. It is on Saturday and Sundays between 2PM and 4PM that it is expected that people are quiet and resting. I find this tradition rather cool and hope that it can be observed in America. I recorded only the singing during this time and at a low level as my wife was telling me the neighbors were trying to sleep.

Very deep lyrics.

Bulgarian Nap time
Are you asleep?
Bulgarian nap time
Are you asleep?
Bulgarian nap time.
Are you asleep?
Bulgarian nap time.
Are you asleep?
Bulgarian nap time.
Are you asleep?
Bulgarian nap time.
Are you asleep?
Bulgarian nap time.
Are you asleep?

Published under Musicsend this post
2010 10 May

Here are a couple of albums recorded by JIM GUITTARD, currently living in Portland, Oregon, USA.
His music is an interesting mixture of folk/folkrock and country rock with some psychedelic undertone. As one of his influences he mentions THE BYRDS, and I think that one can clearly hear that (e.g. Beach).

If you like the genre, his albums are well worth checking out!
Enjoy!

Jim also worked with Henry McGuinn, the son of BYRDS co-founder Roger McGuinn in a project called THE RAGAS (to be posted later), while living in California.

Q: Where exactly are you from?
A: I am originally from Dallas, Texas. But have lived in various places, thus soaking up the vibes of wherever I have lived. I went to college in a small town called Gunnison in Colorado. After that I worked the corporate world of insurance and got fed up and struck out for Hollywood to attend a music school. After 3 years in Hollywood I traveled back to Texas and became a caretaker for my grandparents. After two years of that, I applied for the Peace Corps and was accepted to teach English in Bulgaria. I was there for almost three years and came back to the States and to Portland, Oregon.

Q: Do you want your real name mentioned? If so: What is your real name?
A: Jim Guittard is my real name and what all my solo music is under.

Q: How recorded?
A: I have been recording myself really since 1994 when I got my first 4-track machine. It was a Tascam. In the early days, I recorded myself mostly doing Beatles, Tom Petty, or other classic rock music. – My favorite guitar to use is a 6-string 330 Rickenbacker. I also have a 12-String 330 Rickenbacker. For some songs I used a Dr. Groove drum machine and make shift shakers (beer can filled with rice taped up). On my earliest album 96/98 I had a friend, (Jim Seagroves) play pots and pans drums. He was a drummer but didn’t have any drums so this is what we did. – In California, I had a lot of gear that was stolen that I used. – I had a Telecaster B-Bender guitar, 12-String Acoustic Guild, and a Fender Jazz Bass. Hope the thugs that stole it are making some good music. – While in Bulgaria, I used a 12 String acoustic guitar.

Q: When recorded?
A: “Busted in Bulgaria” was recorded between July 2006 to July 2008 on my dell laptop using Adobe Audition 3. – “The Notorious G.I.D.D.” was recorded in 2004-2005. It was when I lived at my grandparents and I used the Tascam 6-track recorder and Cool Edit Pro for editing and mixing. I used some kind of keyboard for a few of the tracks. Can’t remember what kind. – “California Daze” was recorded in 2001 to 2002 and on the 6-track Tascam recorder. Brian McKay engineered some of the songs like “Beach (Acoustic)”. But otherwise I recorded it myself. – 96//98 was recorded during the years 1996 – 1998 on my Tascam 4-track recorder.

Q: Who involved? Who played what?
A: “Busted In Bulgaria”: I played all acoustic guitars, all percussion or drum machine, all lead and back up singing. There are various background noises that I got from various real news events like: on “Survival Mode” the Andrew Meyer Taser scandal at University of Florida John Kerry Rally. – On “Gangster” I used some of my students for background talking. – On “8A Class”, you can hear me “trying” to instruct my students over the loud classroom noise.
– “The Notorious G.I.D.D.” is all me with acoustic and electric guitars and lead and background singing.
– “California Daze”: “Beach” is co-written by Dominic Campanella of the neo-..psychedelic band the Quarter After. I wrote the first verse of the lyrics and he wrote the other verses and chorus. I put the song to music. – On “Beach – Acoustic” Vladimir Maskoff played the jazz fender bass. – On “Confusion, Lies, Guns, and Drugs” Vladimir Maskoff played the jazz fender bass. – The songs “Swing Tune” and “Jazz Tune” were instrumentals songs I wrote while attending the Musicians Institute in Hollywood, California. The recordings of these songs were an actually playing test that I did. I came into class with charts for the musicians that I had written out and they sight-read the 2 songs. The back up electric guitar is a Brazilian guy named Reginaldo. He was a friend of mine. I do not know the name of the drummer. The teacher you can hear in the background is Lupo Groinig who gives a critique.
– On 96/98 I played the acoustic guitars, electric guitar, sitar, tambourine, sang lead vocals unless noted otherwise. My brother Bob Guittard played bass on Chapatis, and electric guitar on “Once Around the Moon.” – Warren Barry played keyboards and drums on “Once Around the Moon.” I played bass on “Once Around the Moon.” – Jim Seagroves played pots and pans drum on many of the tracks as well as sang or talked some backgrounds.

Q: Any more releases? Any “official” releases?
A: No other official releases but I am constantly working on new material.

Q: Since when does this band/project exist (are you into music)?
A: I have been fascinated by the tape recorder and sounds since a small child. I think the first song I learned on the guitar was George Harrison’s “Don’t Bother Me.” I guess I related to George the most because he was the quiet Beatle and often overlooked.

Q: Any previous bands worth mentioning?
A: While in California, I had a duo with Henry McGuinn called the Ragas. We recorded a bit and had a few shows. The music can be found here:
http://www.jamendo.com/en/artist/The_Ragas It is pretty raw. – He is the son of Roger McGuinn co-founded the Byrds. – Here’s a little piece I wrote on the Ragas:
http://jimguittard.com/?p=6

Q: How’d you “label” your music?
A: I don’t like labeling myself because my music may be heard differently to everybody and labeling is rather meaningless sometimes. To me, my music is honest optimistic, psychedelic, folk-rock, country-rock, “figure it out as you go” hopeful music or experimental. A kind of travel life diary music or who knows it may be just crap music.

Q: Influences?
A: I was a child of the 1980’s and I was not into Motley Crue or Def Leppard at the time. I was the guy with sideburns since I was 16 and looked up to Elvis and the Beatles. I got turned onto the Byrds while in California and Bob Dylan. Bob Dylan is probably who I am influenced the most by. It is really his philosophy of life that has influenced me. The rebelliousness of Johnny Cash has also influenced me quite a bit. In that he does his own thing and does not need to please anyone. – And lastly Anton Newcombe of the Brian Jonestown Massacre has heavily influenced me in the music and again mostly for his philosophy of life to keep at it and never give up no matter what jokers are attacking.

Q: Website, myspace?
A: Main website:
http://jimguittard.com/
Myspace:
http://www.myspace.com/guittard

Youtube:
http://www.youtube.com/user/jgidd
To download the albums for free:
http://www.jamendo.com/en/artist/Jim_Guittard

Q: Anything that you think is interesting, that you’d like to inform the blog readers about…
A: Only thing I have to say is that every one should find their own voice through art, music, writing or whatever. The world needs more idealists to express feelings to bring about change. We have been told what to think for so long and we don’t need to be told. As George Harrison said, “Think For Yourself.” Experience things for yourself. Be open-minded and get out of your back yard and experience things that may be out of your comfort zone. – I had a live interview just months before coming back to the States on Tangra Mega Rock Radio Station in Bulgaria: http://jimguittard.com/?p=241
(J. G. via email)



link to interview at Homemade Lo-fi Psych blog

Published under Musicsend this post
2010 2 Apr

You’re buried underneath the America Dream.
You got no time for nothing.
Sit at your cubicle for hours and hours.
Don’t forget about your paper towers.

Pick up the phone and talk to people you don’t like.
What’s it all for? You wish you could take a hike.
No, you gotta pay off your credit cards.
And listen to all the flippin’ retards.

Go back home and you’re tired.
So you drink some coffee and get wired.
And you get in a rage
Cause you had a terrible day.

Turn on the tube for the brainwashing.
They tell ya how to feel and it really stings.
Pop open the beer let your head fill with fear.
That leads to absolutely nothing to hear

Do it all over again the next day.
Keep on in the monotonous robotic way.
When will you say, “Is it all worth this?”
Probably only after you sink to the abyss.

Go back home and you’re tired.
So you drink some coffee and get wired.
And you get in a rage
Cause you had a terrible day.

Words and Music by Jim Guittard 2009
http://jimguittard.com/
Filmed on Location in Sofia, Bulgaria
download song for free at:
http://www.archive.org/details/BuriedUnderneathTheAmericanDream

Published under Uncategorizedsend this post
2009 11 Jul

Today, I was riding a city bus in Sofia, Bulgaria. The buses are fairly old but that doesn’t bother me. My girlfriend and I had been walking in the rain with umbrellas and got on.

We got on and I casually noticed an old man walking past me for the exit of bus at the back. I didn’t think much more about him until about two minutes had passed. My girlfriend and I had punched our tickets and were sitting. As we were sitting, I heard some screaming that sounded muffled or not very loud. I looked around and saw that the old man was stuck in the bus exit. His head was the only part that was out of the bus. The door was completely shut.

I immediately stood up and went to see if I could open the door. The man was screaming outside the closed door. I screamed at my girlfriend and she and other Bulgarians screamed to “Stop the Bus,” and to “Open the door.”

The bus stopped and the door was opened and the old man jumped off immediately to the rain and I suppose was okay. I was rather disturbed by seeing this. Makes you think about everything around you and to be on guard.

Published under Bulgaria, Lifesend this post
2009 24 Apr
06:54 AM CDT on Monday, April 20, 2009
By MARK NORRIS / The Dallas Morning News
norrism@dallasnews.com

Applications are up for the Peace Corps, Teach for America and AmeriCorps as Texans turn to service organizations in increasing numbers during the economic downturn.

The state numbers mirror national figures that show year-to-year increases beginning in 2007. Initial numbers of applicants this year are far outpacing those for any previous year.

Jim Guittard, who returned in late 2008 from a two-year mission for the Peace Corps, isn’t surprised.

“With the economy the way it is, people are looking for other things,” said Guittard, who lives in northeast Dallas. “They’re searching for a more satisfying or fulfilling life.”

Officials with the Peace Corps are still tallying the number of applications received in February, but according to the Dallas office’s Shannon Borders, it will probably be a record for one month.

AmeriCorps tripled the amount of applications it received in February this year compared with last.

Kerci Marcello Stroud, Teach for America’s regional communications director, said more people mentioned the economy during the just-completed application period than in years past. Some applicants told her the economic downturn made them re-evaluate what was important to them.

“There’s a growing interest among young people to engage in public service,” Stroud said.

The vast majority of applicants for AmeriCorps, the Peace Corps and Teach for America are recent college graduates.

Of the 35,000 applications Teach for America received this year, 25,000 were from graduating seniors. The remainder was split between graduate students and young professionals less than five years removed from graduation.

Sandy Nunez volunteered for Teach for America after graduating in spring 2007 from the University of Texas at Austin. She thought about joining the Peace Corps or other service organizations before deciding she could be most effective teaching children in underperforming schools.

“It seemed like a very appealing way to get involved,” said Nunez, who is about to complete her two-year commitment in the San Benito schools.

She recently decided to stay on for a third year, saying the state of the economy was a small part of her decision.

Borders said the Peace Corps targets recent college graduates. The median age of its volunteers in 25. There is no age limit, however, and 5 percent of the volunteer force is over 50. The oldest current volunteer is 84.

Guittard joined the Peace Corps 10 years after graduating from college. He had worked at an insurance company among other jobs and decided he wanted to take his life in a different direction.

“In college, I had considered the Peace Corps,” he said. “I didn’t want to have regrets in my life, so I decided to go apply.”

Guittard wound up teaching English to high-school-age students in Bulgaria for two years and taking away an appreciation of how tight-knit families were and how tough his students’ lives were.

He said people who apply need to have the maturity to handle being the situation they are entering.

That vetting is part of the application process, said Borders. She said the biggest surprise is people finding out it can take six to12 months to complete.

But it’s worth it, according to Guittard, who said, “I learned a lot and I’m more appreciative of what I have.”

jim-guittard-dmn-juan-garciaJUAN GARCIA/DMN
Jim Guittard taught English to high-school-age students in Bulgaria for two years.

Published under Bulgaria, Lifesend this post
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