Ominous Ride - 19 Never Comes

from by Various Artists

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This was tricky one - write from the point of view from someone who has just won/lost an election. I originally intended for this to be light and humorous, though I really wasn't sure what the 'narrative' would be.

I started with the chorus - wasn't thrilled at first. The line "looking like they're buying what you've been selling" reinforced my belief that this would be a campy, used car salesman-type politician. The thing that threw it back into dark mode was the line "13 is the place where tensions rise." I guess I couldn't picture legitimate tension in a comic song.

I tooled around with the music for a bit and then added what I thought to be stand-in lyrics until I could put something better together. I still was having trouble with what the song was actually about: who was this narrator? What was the election? Why only 37 voters?

I have no idea how secret societies or backroom political meetings work, but I decided to set the song at the climax of a secret, all-powerful society election, where they were about to elect a new leader. The narrator is purportedly the good guy, and his opposition the kind who would "pull the wings off flies." However, I always kept in the back of my head that the story might be told by an unreliable narrator who wants us, the listener to trust him, though he is ultimately the one who seeks power and control.

I still am a novice at mixing, and I can see places where I can add little nuances. Overall, I am pleased with the outcome - not bad for 72 hours.

lyrics

Behind closed doors
You've coalesced your ideologies
Before the council of the hook and hammer
It's plain to see
That I believe I am in the right
And right of mind
So now I face those 37 faces
Mercy

In the light of the back room haze
Everybody wants a taste
Some would skin a soul to pull the strings
And you've done all you can to persuade the table
All you need is 19

1 vote, 2 vote, 3 vote 4
5 will get your chances through the door
6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11
Looking like they're buying what you been selling
12 votes keep your hopes alive
13 is the place where tensions rise
14, 15, 16 on a run
Or so it seems
An age till 17
18 you hope you are the one
If 19 ever comes

As the council deliberates
You look into the madman's face
He knows that you have seen behind his sheen
In his eyes is a glint of retaliation
All he needs is 19

1 vote, 2 vote, 3 vote 4
5 will get your chances through the door
6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11
Looking like they're buying what you been selling
12 votes keep your hopes alive
13 is the place where tensions rise
14, 15, 16 on a run
Or so it seems
An age till 17
18 you feel that you have won
But 19 never comes

Judgment is a funny thing
How can they hand the reins to one
Who pulls the wings off flies?
And so you fight for all that you believe in
Hoping that you reach
Those 37 minds

And the world will never see
Behind the curtain
Where the council handles all the locks and keys
And who they choose to lead
19 votes is everything

1 vote, 2 vote, 3 vote 4
5 will get your chances through the door
6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11
Looking like they're buying what you been selling
12 votes keep your hopes alive
13 is the place where tensions rise
14, 15, 16 on a run
Or so it seems
An age till 17
18 you feel that you have won
But 19 never comes

credits

from SpinTunes #12: Round 1, released January 31, 2017

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Spintown Middletown, Ohio

I run a songwriting contest called SpinTunes. Most of the material hosted on this account is a result of that contest. You can follow the contest on Twitter (@SpinTunes) or my personal account (@Spintown).

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