2015 29 Dec

The idea of this album came from working with Jay Daniels on the Muffin Junkee Serves Tunes with your Tea Podcast. I have to give Jay most of the credit. We had been talking about live albums as a way to get my listeners to be aware of my diverse music catalogue. In our conversations, Jay turned me onto a rare Syd Barrett live album. It was the one recorded by the legendary John Peel in February of 1970. The album is stripped down with minimal instrumentation and vocals. This is the kind of vibe that I was going for on Jays show. On the particular podcast, I recorded a live set which turned out to be the live album. Jay was interviewing a guest named “Ms Pipa Stafford Shelby” who happened to be the head spokeswoman for the Global Alliance for Muffins, Biscuits, and Crumpets. Ms. Shelby began to trash Jay and I did not like that and so it was that I burst into his studio punk style to have a few words with this crotchety snob of a lady who was pushing Jay around and telling him that he should shave and get a haircut.

The songs for the live album have tracks from my albums Busted in Bulgaria, Forward, California Daze, Rise, the Guittard Tapes Vol. 2, and also several tunes that have not been released on any albums thus far. I think you will enjoy the album. I am proud of it! Thanks Jay!

You can hear the podcast I did with Jay here entitled: muffin-junkee-18-jim-guittard-takes-over-the-studio-for-a-live-set

And here is the Syd Barrett album that Jay and I had in mind when planning the podcast:

jg live3

Published under Good Musicsend this post
2015 27 Jul

Billy Mack, a folk artist friend of mine based in Allentown, Pennsylvania has come up with a couple of projects that I have taken part.  The latest project revolves around putting out a compilation of songs all relating to coffee.  Mr. Mack is putting together a coffee art house to open in September in Allentown, PA called Coffee House Without Limits which aims to serve as an art gallery, all ages music venue, and community space.

Billy Mack performs around the country on a low budget using Greyhound buses or whatever it happens to be to get from place to place.  He has quite an underground following and it is this community of similarly thinking do it yourselfers that he called upon for the coffee compilation.

I wrote a song simply titled “Coffee”.

coffee lyrics

A little video I made for my song:

Billy’s Coffee compilation can be listened and bought here: (I’m song 20).

Published under Good Musicsend this post
2015 7 Mar

Lately, I’ve found quite a few unlabeled cassette tapes that I’m thinking would be great for a third addition for the Guittard Tapes. It’ll be a trilogy now! The tunes have been heavy with pedals including digital delay, distortion, and phaser. I was wowed when I heard the tunes. The challenge as always is to get them transferred from the tapes to the digital tascam machine and then finally to the laptop where I can mix it down. Part of the challenge is that the originally Tascam machine that I recorded the songs has a defective second track. I cannot hear anything while listening. So I have to flip the tape over and record the track now from the third track which now plays backwards. So, once on the computer I have to reverse the track back to normal and then line up all the tracks in sequence so that it sounds in time. There’s no click track so I have to look and listening for anything hiss, click, or whatever.

So here are a few stand out tracks thus far:
Phaser Attack – Most dominant effect is the phaser pedal with trippy distortion, screaming Rickenbacker and drum machine.  Great!

Feedback Rock – Most dominant here is the out of control digital delay pedal with tremolo pedal and chaotic Rickenbacker.  I guess it was a few months before 9-11 when a lot of bad vibes were swirling about.

Vacuum B-Bender – This is an interest piece in that I used a vacuum cleaner hose in front of the amplifier to trick up the sound.  I remember my friend Jolie visiting me and seeing this vacuum hose next to my recording gear and tripping out! Well, here’s the song.  It has my B-Bender on it.

Get It Together Man – This one’s really weird.  The dominant sound track is an actual guy in Hollywood having a melt down outside my apartment banging a shovel on the ground and screaming.  Imagine that! The music is quite chaotic and is a picture of my life back in 2001.  Things were not perfect in all areas but I was still persevering with my music.  The main influence was Beck and his Stereopathetic Soulmanure album.

1989 Highlander Band

Published under Lifesend this post
2014 25 Jan

Highland Park Hoodlum Source

I’m posting here the source files to three HP-related songs that you can download and remix. I hope you will think is interesting.  I wrote and recorded them back in 2005 at a time of transition.  I was trying to figure out my next move and where God was calling me.  In early 2003, I had come back from California after literally being run out of town by real hoodlums.  Back in Texas, I was living with my grandparents going here and there as errand boy.  Often at night while they were snoring away downstairs in the “hothouse” I was recording music.  That’s what I called it anyway.  There were wars over the thermostat.

red lights jimmy

 

 

 

 

 

 

My grandfather had these hip red lights in the den.

My alter ego during this period was the Notorious G.I.D.D.  I seriously felt like a hoodlum and not able to fit in with the “country club” scene in H.P that my grandparents were members.  The mundane routine had become going to CVS to pick up prescriptions, the bank and the grocery store to buy Oreos for the grandparents.  I also worked a public library job while I was applying to join the Peace Corps.  Answering questions and giving status updates was a regular thing with family during this long Peace Corps application process.  Well, let’s just say the Federal Government is SLOW!  As Tom Petty says, “The waiting is the hardest part.”

HPH on the Rise Source

Jim in hothouse

 

 

 

 

 

 

Flippity Flop Source

Feel free to mix the songs and post them.  Each song has the vocal and instrumental tracks.

Published under Musicsend this post
2013 21 Dec

The lyrics for this song “California” were written during a time of reflection concerning my three and a half year mission pursuing music in Los Angeles, California from 1999-2003. (If interested in other songs from this era, please download my two volume album called “The Guittard Tapes” –  Volume 1  and Volume 2.)

Things ended on a kind of sour note with three guitars being stolen. Consequently, I left L.A. as it was unsafe and too expensive to live.  My mind was in a sort of fog upon return to Texas understandably and I put my Rickenbackers away for some time.  The music was still in my heart but I needed a break.

The original feeling of the song, at least when I wrote the lyrics, was to be a Woody Guthrie type “hard times” song. But after reading over the lyrics I condensed it down a bit and decided against the folkie version. Possibly in the future I could put out a folkier version.

I recorded the song in Fort Worth, Texas using my Tascam Recording machine. I played the keyboard, electric guitar, tambourine, and sing the vocals.

California

I left busted and disgusted.
My thoughts were surely not trusted.
I was bombed out and wiped out.
But not down and out.

I was robbed and without a job.
But I didn’t turn to a snob.
I was pushed, and shoved and almost knifed.
All I want was my life.

I had threats against my life
By hoodlums with much strife.
I’ve seen the inside of jails
There were only thugs.

I know the 3 of Clubs bar.
The place where the BJM star.
I’ve played the Sunset Strip
Go there for a special trip.

Chorus

California, I never knew you.
Until I got to you.
California, I never knew you.
Until I got to you.

I’ve trekked to Santa Ana’s Rickenbacker
To practice in a tent with McGuinn.
I’ve seen the 24-hour church
Go there if you must.

I left a school and was a fool,
Cause I didn’t want to muck about.
The guys there were like robots.
Not my best place.

I put money down on apartments.
They took my deposit and never gave it back.
I never even moved in.
Oh well, that’s allright.

Chorus

California, I never knew you.
Until I got to you.
California, I never knew you.
Until I got to you.

I’m not a bad guy.
Just trying to follow God’s will.
Nobody likes that.
But I don’t really care.

I’ve had panic attacks on Highway 101.
It was not so fun in the sun.
I think that God was there.
I think that God was there.

Words and Music by Jim Guittard 2013

Raga Jim and 3 of Clubs Smokes Girl

Drawing by Henry McGuinn

Published under Lifesend this post
2013 9 Nov

A few weeks ago, I compiled together more songs from my lost “Guittard Tapes.”  I hadn’t had much time to go through the tapes but I did manage to find some songs and I have finally put together the second volume of the Guittard Tapes.  The tracks all come from a very productive period  of mine from 1999-2003 when I was living in Los Angeles.  If you like lo-fi do-it-yourself tunes, you’ll dig these on Volume 2 of the Guittard Tapes.

There are 12 new tracks which are as following:

  1. Girl’s On Crack                                                           2:22       
  2. Instrumental                                                                2:00
  3. Blues Instrumental                                                      1:12
  4. Tired (Experimental version)                                      1:32       
  5. Sleepless Night                                                           4:47       
  6. Paxil Withdrawal                                                        3:12
  7. Can’t Be Down That Very Long 2002 Demo             2:54
  8. Spacey Synth Instrumental                                         2:53       
  9. Jazzy Tune                                                                  3:16
  10. Tired – Acoustic Version                                             2:31       
  11. Airy Jangly Instrumental                                            1:48
  12. Gotta Get Out of Here                                                 2:49

Back in June, Jay Daniels, the host of the Muffin Junkee lo-fi Psychedelic podcast, featured me and the Guittard Tapes on an hour-long show broadcasting from British Columbia.  Since June, I have compiled the music for the Guittard Tapes Volume II.  The tunes were unreleased until this year and were just sitting in storage until early this year when my dad called me and said I had some things in his storage unit.  And how pleased I was to find the tapes!!!

The Guittard Tapes Volume II

* Track 7 was released on the California Daze album.

The Guittard Tapes Volume I

* Tracks 7 and 8 were released on the California Daze album.

Jim and Regi MI 2000

Myself with my Rickenbacker and fellow Musicians Institute student Regi – 2000.

can't be down that very lock

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Can’t Be Down That Very Long

Published under Good Musicsend this post
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 31 Jul

I wrote the song and recorded it around 2001 in Hollywood, California on my 4-track Tascam machine. I play a jangly rhythm Rickenbacker, drums, and lead guitar on another 12-String Rickenbacker. The piece was me trying to play jazz.  Here is a video I put together from public domains clips.

You can download and listen to the song for free here:

In making the video, I found some clips that were either in the public domain or they could be used because they were uploaded as part of creative commons licensing.

The clips I used in the video are from:

1. Reg Kehoe and His Marimba Queens (ca. early 1940s)

The clip was produced as a “Soundie” which was the precursor to music videos that we all know. The 3-Minute soundies were viewed on coin-operated jukeboxes that could be found in clubs, nightclubs, restaurants, and bars.

Mills Panoram Soundie Jukebox

Mills Panoram Soundie Jukebox

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. The cult classic “Reefer Madness” (1936)

The rest of the video comes from home videos from my childhood growing up in Texas in the 1970s.

Published under Musicsend this post
2013 20 Jul

Over the last fifteen years, I’ve recorded quite a few Byrds covers.  The first Byrds album that I bought was their third album entitled “Fifth Dimension” which was released in July 1966.  The 1996 Columbia reissue has a few extra bonus tracks.  The interview track is one of my favorites.  I still feel quite attached to this album.

I’ve recorded several tracks from the 5D album (1, 2, 3, 4, 5 ) .  Mr. Tambourine album (6 and 9).  Younger Than Yesterday (8).  And Sweetheart of the Rodeo (7).

1. 5D (Jim)

  • Jim Guittard – electric bass, guitar, lead guitar, organ, vocals

2. What’s Happening?!? (The Ragas)

  • Henry McGuinn – lead guitar, vocals
  • Jim Guittard – guitar

3. Eight Miles High (The Ragas)

  • Henry McGuinn – 12-String acoustic lead guitar, vocals
  • Jim Guittard – acoustic guitar, vocals

4. Eight Miles High (Jim)

  • Jim Guittard – guitar, vocals

5. Captain Soul (Jim)

  • Jim Guittard – drums, electric bass, electric guitar, guitar, hand claps

6. Mr. Tambourine Man (The Ragas)

  • Henry McGuinn – lead guitar, vocals
  • Jim Guittard – guitar, vocals

7. You Ain’t Going Nowhere (The Ragas)

  • Henry McGuinn – lead acoustic guitar, vocals
  • Jim Guittard – acoustic guitar, vocals

8. Thoughts and Words (Jim)

  • Jim Guittard – acoustic guitar, backwards guitar, vocals

9. Spanish Harlem Incident (Jim)

  • Jim Guittard – electric bass, electric guitar, drum machine, vocals
  • Katia Guittard – voice
Published under Musicsend this post
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