Losing My Religion

Right now we’re working on some more new tunes for our next show.  I’m really excited to be adding an old REM tune that has always been one of my favorites, “Losing My Religion”.  Even more exciting for me is that fact that this song is essentially built around a mandolin riff.  I’ll be the first one to admit that I still have a long way to go on the mandolin but I think pushing yourself to learn new material on a new instrument is really a rewarding challenge.

Here’s a bit of background from Wikipedia on how this song came to be.  R.E.M. guitarist Peter Buck wrote the main riff and chorus to the song on a mandolin while watching television one day. Buck had just bought the instrument and was attempting to learn how to play it, recording the music as he practiced. Buck said that “when I listened back to it the next day, there was a bunch of stuff that was really just me learning how to play mandolin, and then there’s what became ‘Losing My Religion’, and then a whole bunch more of me learning to play the mandolin.

In the song, Michael Stipe sings the lines “That’s me in the corner/That’s me in the spotlight/Losing my religion”. The phrase “losing my religion” is an expression from the southern region of the United States that means losing one’s temper or civility, or “being at the end of one’s rope.” Stipe told The New York Times the song was about romantic expression. He told Q that “Losing My Religion” is about “someone who pines for someone else. It’s unrequited love, what have you.” Stipe compared the song’s theme to “Every Breath You Take” by The Police, saying, “It’s just a classic obsession pop song. I’ve always felt the best kinds of songs are the ones where anybody can listen to it, put themselves in it and say, ‘Yeah, that’s me.”

It’s actually coming together pretty well and should be ready by the time our next show rolls around.  In the mean time here’s a link to the original video for your viewing and listening pleasure.  Study up on your lyrics so you can sing along with us too. Hope you enjoy it.


~WPF Dewey


New Vid Today! – Rocky Mountain Way

When Pigs Fly - Rocky Mountain Way

Here’s one you haven’t seen yet.  This was shot in July of 2013 at Flames Central in Calgary.  I didn’t even realize it until just now but it seems we had a guest guitar player on stage with us.  The guy at the far right side of frame jumped up on stage with us and started playing Darren’s black Fender Stratocaster despite the fact that it wasn’t plugged in.  From the looks of the footage it seems he knew what he was doing but I guess we’ll never know.  Gotta love a good party.

“Rocky Mountain Way” is a 1973 song by rock guitarist Joe Walsh and his band Barnstorm, with writing credits given to Walsh, Rocke Grace, Kenny Passarelli, and Joe Vitale. The song was originally released on the album The Smoker You Drink, The Player You Get.

Walsh appeared in studio on The Howard Stern Show on June 12, 2012 and talked about how the lyrics to the song came to him in 1972 shortly after releasing his first solo effort, Barnstorm.

“I’m living in Colorado and I’m mowing the lawn. I look up and there’s the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains and there’s snow on them in the summer. And it knocked me back because it was just beautiful. And I thought, well I have committed. I’m already in Colorado and it’s too late to regret the James Gang. The Rocky Mountain Way is better than the way I had. Because the music was better. I got the words, bam! I got all of the words all at once and ran into the house to write the words down. The lawn mower kept going over into the neighbor’s yard and ate the garden. It was an expensive song to write!”

This song has been covered by many notable artists over the years including Stephen Stills, Slaughter, and Ozzy Osbourne. How’s that for an eclectic mix?

Here’s our rendition of Joe Walsh’s “Rocky Mountain Way“.  Thanks for the great song Joe.

~WPF Dewey