Ladies and Gentlemen, Brooklyn Original Proudly Presents a new column by Brooklyn musician/artist Tommy Lombardozzi... END
"Harmony guitars can come in at that part, right over the bass break down. Then the percussion, with a strong tambourine, can lead the drums in... right before a three-part harmony vocal bit joins in for the last verse. Ooo, ooo! ...then maybe I can get a violin player to do a call-and-response with the vocal melody... or a trumpet! Yeah! Good idea! But hmmmm... which bass player should I use for this? Michael? Mike? Joe? Maybe I'll just do it myself. Fun! Now, how can we get the drums to sound "dirty"? Hmmm... ?"
These are the kindsa things that run through my head at night as I lie in bed waiting for sleep. These are the things that keep me awake, excitedly anticipating all the possible possibilities, all the musical avenues I can explore! It annoys me sometimes, the fact that I can't sleep because I'm thinking about music. I lie there in bed, wondering and planning, and my leg shakes like a lunatic. Sometimes I am forced to get up and strum a few chords on a guitar just to get it out... so I can try and fall asleep like a normal human being. This is what I do.
Hi everyone. If ya don't know me, my name is Tommy. Mr. Lombardozzi if ya nasty! I've been invited by Marilyn and Sal, the foremother and forefather of Brooklyn Original, to do a column for this budding blog-site. What a treat! Initially I wasn't sure it'd be a good idea. I mean, what do I have to say about being a musician and artist that no other musician and artist can say?! Plus, I feel sorta douchey talking about my stuff! But after some thought, I figured I could talk about this stuff more easily if I was to intersperse it with some asinine anecdotes, bawdy language, tawdry tales, maniacal musings, random rants, and just a touch of nonsensical noodling. In short, this column will be very "TL"! It may not always be informative and it may not always be introspective, but I will try my Belushi best* to make it entertaining!
So, here's what I've been up to of late:
I have started rehearsal for my upcoming album. I've been playing once a week with misters Michael Lombardozzi (bass) and Richard Martin (drums) as the core band (this will be augmented on the actual record by other musician friends of mine who I am looking forward to playing with and having play on my CD, including Jon Carrai). For the very few rehearsals we've had so far (three!), things sound great! Still messy, but great. The seeds are planted and this tree of rock will be strong!
Rich and Michael are really taking things to the next level. We are working together to make the songs exceptional, I feel, putting our heads together to take my songs and ideas to places I may not have taken them, but still making sure to keep the spirit and the mood or "feel" of my material in tact. It's pretty exciting for me. Another great bass player, Mike Rodainsky, will be the featured player on four tracks as well (if you were at my 31st birthday party/show, you'd have seen Mike rock it the fuck up on my tunes. Good stuff! You can find his My Space page on my top Friends' under the name LONG HOPE KNIFE. Check it out.)
Though it's in its earliest phases, we (Rich and I) are already discussing the production of the album; what approach to take for specific songs... HOW to record them, or how to achieve desired moods and sounds with the technology at hand. Rich will be the engineer, and we will be recording on tape. Analog, baby! It's been years since I've recorded on tape, and I am excited to explore it's possibilities... AND its limitations! (Necessity is the mother of invention and all that shit, y'know?) Its gonna be a pretty raw, homemade affair... and I'm sure it's gonna rock fuckin’ socks!
I had a long list of songs to choose from. Plus, during the planning, I started writing new ones that I wanted to feature... stuff that got me excited and didn't sound like anything I'd written in the last 5 years or so (recently I started playing electric guitar again for the first time in YEARS, so new things came out of that, new ideas). It was a tough time narrowing down a list of 10-12 songs I would definitely be recording for this project. Even now I'm still not 100% about what I've chosen. But, what helped me whittle the list down was the idea that I wanted the songs to best represent ME and my "style" of music. They're a bit more personal, and I've omitted the ones that may fall into any specific musical "genre". The ones that were left were the ones I felt best represented me and my current state of mind. I put aside many songs that I felt were strong in order to do this The ones I've picked I think are ALSO strong, don't get me wrong... but the "chosen few" are more scary in a way; more risky for me, more personal, and more straight-forward/less poetic. I'm looking forward to getting to the end result. I'll keep ya’s posted...
In other TL news, I have been asked by an old friend to contribute a piece of artwork for a March of Dimes silent auction. I'm gonna be doing an original painting for the auction. Pretty cool. Not sure if you're familiar with the MOD, but it's a great organization that helps kids. Not sure when the silent auction will be, details are just coming in, but when I know, YOU'LL know! I promise. I was pretty flattered that she asked me to do this.... shit, I'm pretty flattered when anyone shows ANY interest in my artwork! ...so I jumped at the chance, even if just to show my appreciation to her for her enjoyment and respect for my work. Hopefully it'll pull in some bucks for the charity, too! That'd make me happy. I like that I can lend my talents for good causes... be it something like this, or, to play for a charity show or at money-raising event. I can honestly and sincerely say that when I can do something like that, it REALLY makes me appreciate any talents I do have. It makes it all worthwhile, like I'm actually DOING something good and not so self-fulfilling.
And that's the thing with creative endeavors; you do them because you HAVE to, and because (for the most part) they make you feel good. Or, they help you to express yourself or say something that you may not be able to say normally. So really, they're self-fulfilling. I SHOULD be happy just playing to myself in my house, or just doing drawings that no one will ever see. Right? But no. When I do something like write a new song or paint a new painting, I want to share it! Though I have (hopefully) satisfied myself with my work, at that point I wanna share it with others. I want others to enjoy it, too! If they don't, it wont tarnish MY enjoyment of it, or my satisfaction with a job well done, but, it feels nice to know that I've created something that someone else can enjoy so much that they even make it their own. When someone feels that way say about a song I wrote, at that point it goes beyond selfish self-satisfaction and becomes something that I share with that individual. A bond, maybe? Who knows! But, it's a nice feeling.
That's why I am always stressing the fact that we should be supporting each other! More than we do! I know I don't go out to as many friends’ shows as I'd like, or as I used to. Either I'm broke, or lazy, or just don't wanna go alone... but I really feel that this whole internet thing can be a great tool to SHARE. It's so easy to post a bulletin touting a friend's band or site or art, or, send an e-mail to a friend saying "Hey, check out my friend's page, I think you'd like them!" Chances are, if a friend is going that lil' bit out of their way to recommend someone for your enjoyment, you WILL like 'em! Get others involved who may not be "in the know"... or at least TRY to. What harm can it do? And, ya just might turn people on to something new! We all win!!!
And that's the main reason why I love this Brooklyn Original page. I really respect and appreciate what Sal and Marilyn are trying to do, and I support the fuck out of it! I like this idea of a "creative community", and I'm really glad they asked me to be a part of it. Thanks, guys! I hope I do ya's proud!
Now, if Sal would only put my art and music page up on the B.O. My Space page's top friends!!! Get to it, Sal! Haha.
Well folks, I'm done for now, but I shall return. Consider this first post an introduction to my future columns. Write and lemme know your thoughts, or drop the B.O. kids a line and let 'em know what you'd like to see/hear/have answered, etc. I'm taking requests...
*"Belushi best": a term I made up to describe when you go above and beyond, in a maniacal manner, to ensure top fun!