Sunday, May 17, 2015

Song About Sadness: "The Lullaby That Never Was" by Guitarist Rob Lattin

The Lullaby That Never Was - The Music Box Was Broken.

Sadness: Here is a rendition of Our Lady of Akita
I wanted to compose a song that captures sadness, and one method I would employ is taking the song of a music box, which is supposed to be happy, and throw in some off kilter undertones.

With my latest release :The Lullaby That Never Was" I took the audio image of winding a broken music box to hear a lullaby. Each time you wind it, it conks out. After a third attempt you hear the guitar version of the lullaby.
 This is not a sad song, it is a song about sadness.
During the play of the guitar, you hear spring like sounds to further remind you that the music box is broken. At the end, there is one more attempt to wind it, but it only plays a few notes.

For the symbolism of the song, go to my other blog God Rules For some details about the musical aspect of the song, then stay here, my friend.

The idea of a music box for a theme or lullaby is not original. One of my favorite composers, Robert Cobert of Dark Shadows, wrote the first music box song (Josettes Theme) that I know that transforms from the tiny box playing 18th century melody into a beautiful full orchestra composition.

Similarly, I put music box sounds at the bookends of the song, sandwiching the double melody. With this I employ only guitar for other sounds and instrumentation on the mid-portion of the song. The only sound on the song that is not guitar is the winding of the box, which was provided by FREE SFX UK.com. (Thanks guys for the great sound and helping me capture the essence of my broken music box!)



This Lullaby was first written in 2001 and finally re-recorded and remixed today. So it's hot off the presses! Most of the guitar was played on a Global hollow body guitar (my favorite axe - no matter what anybody says this thing lasts and does things other guitars can't.)

The music box notes were played with that guitar through the Boss BR-8 64 V-Track. The electric "solo" part of the song is played on a new Fender Stratocaster to contrast solid body vs hollow body guitar, to contrast acoustic with electric, and to contrast arpeggios with simple chord progression.

Although I do not employ any minor chords in this song, I still wanted to convey an essence of sadness. Again, this is not a sad song, but song about sadness. The 'verse' part of the melody is a bit odd in that it doesn't say happiness but presents an unusualness about the song. To bring it down to an impending sadness I did not include any drums, bass or percussion at all. The electric part of the song breaks away from that so it sounds a little exuberant but is shortened and then the arpeggios return and the song slowly end on a broken phrase.

To emphasize frustration, winding the music box and playing only a few notes seems to accomplish this. Well, I guess that's enough analysis.

Be sure to share this song!


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Musician/Composer. Speciality: guitar. I play and record rock and roll, acoustic, soundtrack, blues, middle eastern, Christian rock, humor songs, Horror music. Have guitar - will play.