Welcome to this tiny corner of cyberspace!
If you're looking for streetwise/booksmart songs, you've come to the right place. Common mythology has it that when artists like Robert Johnson go down to the crossroads to offer their souls for fame and fortune, the Prince of Darkness is always ready, willing, and able, but the un-famous work on this site is proof-positive that there are some offers the devil actually can refuse.
If your work is too artsy for the streets, not arty enough for the ivory tower, not trendy enough for the pop charts, and not an easy fit for a specific genre, why, even the devil has limits. Still, if you like tunes that don't insult your ears or your intelligence and reward closer scrutiny, you might just find my work worthy of your time and attention. I like to think of the songs as the truth told slant, all of them starting in the "foul rag and bone shop of the heart."
J. B This is where my songs reside.
And my family tree:
DESCRIPTION: Born in Land of a 10,000 lakes, now alive and well in City of Big Shoulders, where by day I've taught college writing and literature for many a year while devoting off hours to crafting songs rooted in literary poetics and works. Well, mostly anyway.
MODUS OPERANDI: Guitar, harmonica, some keyboards and bass. Solo or with accomplices now and then. Credo: The truth told slant, sound echoes sense, every word counts (except when it doesn't)... And all songs begin in what Yeats' described as the "rag and bone shop of the heart,"
MUSICAL INFLUENCES: Hard-scrabble folk/rock tradition of Guthrie, Dylan, Rolling Stones, Beatles, Kinks, Doors, Lou Reed, Springsteen, Patti Smith, Costello, & Tom Waits + touches of Celtic, blues, cabaret, and classical.
LITERARY INFLUENCES: From Shakespeare, Shelley, Keats, & Dickinson to T..S. Eliot, Yeats, Joyce, ee cummings, Richard Wilbur, J.D. Salinger, Flannery O'Connor, and assorted other classic and contemporary writers and poets.
WHEREABOUTS: Last seen at Lincoln Square but has played at No Exit, Chopin Theater, Heartland Cafe, The Bean Counter, Lunar Cabaret, and other venues, most commonly backyard gazebo as weather permits.