Archive for the ‘Country’ Category

Kevin Fowler — I Found Out The Hard Way

November 9, 2009

I Found Out the Hard Way is an upbeat song that could be interpreted as a follow-up to Hellbent for a Heartache in that its a scenario where he’s at the point where he finds out that the person he… well… apparently this time married to is cheating on him. However, if this has any connection to Hellbent it should be noticed that in this song he makes a commitment to looking before he leaps the next time.

Chorus:
Well now, I found out the hard way about your lyin’ cheatin’ way
Next time I’ll listen to what they say before I say, “I do.”
I was blinded by love I couldn’t see straight, now I wised up a little too late
I found out the hard way ’bout you

The song starts out by rhyming the word ‘way’ with itself which is something which strikes me as lazy writing, but then again there are only so many ways you can write a line like that. The chorus is, appropriately, a summary of the rest of the song. It shows a surprising change from the man who’s supposedly ‘hellbent’ for a heartache since the word ‘hellbent’ means ‘unable to be changed.’ Of course, there is always the fact that other things could go wrong for him in his relationships which this change might not effect. This is also imagining the two songs as being related, which I like doing.

Well I heard it from my buddy who had heard it from a friend
Who heard it from somebody else who’d seen you out again
Thought somebody must be wrong, there must be some mistake
Why would you wanna make my poor heart ache

He starts off the verse by listing how he found out about this woman’s cheating on him and I really enjoy how he drags it out. He also doesn’t believe it at first, which is due to him being infatuated, but from the amount of people between the source and him it would be somewhat smart to question the validity of a claim like that. Aside from an AABB type rhyme scheme here there isn’t much to look at here.

well…
chorus

(Oh yeah I did!)

Many times I tried to tell myself it wasn’t true
Any fool could see what was goin’ on
Yeah, I was livin’ in my own little world of make believe
Why must I always be the last to know

At this point he turns to denial even though the facts are plain to see for everyone including him. The lyrics here are actually completely straightforward and I can’t really think of anything I could add to them.

Well…
Chorus

Bridge
Goin’ through life with blinders on it’s hard to see the light
You’ll fooled me once, but never twice my eyes are open wide

The bridge reinforces what he says over and over in the chorus and seems to make an actual commitment to what he’s saying and emphasizes it with hyperbole.

Hey!
Chorus x 2

Yeah! I found out the hard way ’bout you.

Oh, I found out the hard way ’bout you, you, oh no.

The reason why I marked each chorus occurrence in this song is because of the lead-ins. They were different each time and are the only reason why the chorus didn’t become extremely annoying since it was repeated FIVE times. This is only really a problem, because the song is catchy and easy to get stuck in your head.

Overall the song is a funny narrative about someone who’s in denial about the one he loves cheating on him. This is something many people can relate to and it probably happens more than most people would want. In making this an upbeat song Kevin seems to make it out to be poking fun at those he describes in this song saying, “I know what its like, but you’re still losers.” in hopes of teaching them a lesson that they need to get with it or they’ll continually make the same mistakes.

This one took me way longer than I expected it to and I apologize. The past few weeks have been interesting as I have moved down to Austin, TX and am looking for a job. I’ll get to work on the next song soon and hopefully I’ll get on a better schedule for this thing.

Ryan

Kevin Fowler — Hellbent for a Heartache

September 14, 2009

Hey, sorry for not writing anything in a while, I finally got a job and for a while I was really busy. I’m really glad to be able to write again, I missed it. So, as a way to make it up to you, I’m going to apologize AND do an analysis unlike certain bloggers referred to in a certain XKCD comic.  So, without further adieu, it’s time to analyze another song by Kevin Fowler.

This song is entitled Hellbent for a Heartache and lightens the mood in coming after the song Penny for Your Thoughts.  It is upbeat and silly.  It features an irregular rhyme scheme and contains a hefty amount of his Texan accent.  In this narrative he talks about himself as a lovesick fool who just doesn’t know the right girls to go after and doesn’t know when to quit chasing them.  He also makes himself out as one who doesn’t want sympathy, because that’s just the way he is.

Well if you looked up “fool” in a Webster Dic book
You’d find a picture of me
You’d say, “Now, this ole boy
Ain’t too smart wearing his heart on his sleeve.”
I’m a sucker for love, oh I’m a true romantic
I’ve been the fool before
But every girl that’s ever known me, has gone and left me lonely
And I kept comin’ back for more

Kevin starts his song out with a play on the old “if you look up gullible in the dictionary you’ll find a picture of so-and-so.” cliche and tells you what you’d think about him.  I kinda find this approach funny, because the song is written as if he’s talking directly to you about a relatively personal subject which implies familiarity, and yet he’s dictating your opinion of him based on a hypothetical seeing him illustrating the word ‘fool.’  I just find it somewhat inconsistent, because if you knew him already he shouldn’t have to point out the fact that he’s a fool, because you’d know it already.   This is something that you, as an friend or acquaintance, might say to someone else when talking about him, but not something you’d say about yourself to someone you know personally.   He kind of mixes perspective here and although he’s going for the silly trash-talk approach, it just strikes me as odd how he does it.  He finishes off the verse by confirming that he is a fool and eliminating any room for sympathy by saying that “..I keep coming back for more.”

Chorus:

Cuz I’m hellbent for a heartache
I keep fallin’ over and over again
It’s a lesson in love I can’t get the hang of
It’s the game of chance I ain’t ever gonna win
I’m hellbent for a heartache
I keep fallin’ over and over again
Well my heart’s at stake
But that’s the chance I’ll take
Cuz I’m hellbent for a heartache

In the chorus he describes his foolish state as incurable, because he is ‘hellbent’ and nothing can change him from the way he is.  He admits that he keeps ‘falling’ both in love and in relationships continuously and although he knows that he’s not learning a lesson he needs to from each of his failed attempts and that his heart is the token in this ongoing ‘game’, he’s willing to take the chance that he’ll ‘lose’ and keep on being foolish.  With the line ‘but that’s a chance I’ll take’ it seems to me that although he knows he’s a fool, he’s somewhat proud of that fact, this also is seen in his describing himself as ‘hellbent.’

Now all my life I’ve been mistreated
A little good lovin’ is all I ever needed
To keep me alive, keep me hangin’ on
Oh for once it’d sure feel nice
Not to be singing the blues
I never learn, I just keep on believing
Til one day these dreams’ll come true

(Chorus 2x)

In this last verse he laments about his past love life, says that he’s always been mistreated by those he’s pursued and hyperbolizes his need for it by saying that it’s something that’ll ‘keep me alive, keep me hangin’ on.’  While love is a need, if it’s these girls’ love he needs then he’s foolishly disregarding the love of his friends and family, which if you haven’t forgotten, he does and you’re apparently one of them since he’s telling you about this.  Despite all of his failures he has hope that his dreams of finding a woman that will love him will come true.  Once again he’s inconsistent, because he’s already admitted that he’s ‘hellbent’ and doomed to fail, but I guess a guy can hope, cant he?

Unless I’m wrong about the beginning inconsistency (which I very well might be), this song is somewhat badly written.  While intended to be humorous (well, it seems to be anyway), it is inconsistently written compared to his other songs.  In Speak of the Devil he succeeded in shifting the frame and focus within the verse and making a progression with it, and he does the same in other songs in the album which I will write about, but this one just seems to have a failed attempt.  It doesn’t ruin the song, though, I still like it, because it’s fun to listen to and sing along with, but I have to say it isn’t one of his better songs.  What do you think of it?  The next song I’ll be writing about is I Found Out the Hard Way and I plan on getting it up soon.

Ryan

Kevin Fowler — Penny For Your Thoughts

May 25, 2009

The third song on Kevin Fowler’s album Beer, Bait and Ammo is Penny for Your Thoughts, a more serious song that talks about the very real problem of the role of money in modern day relationships and the stereotype that love requires money and vice versa.  There isn’t any real set rhyme scheme with this song, at most its slant rhyme.

Some folks put a price on everything
Cause nothin’ in life comes for free
Well love don’t cost money, just hard work and time
You’ve got to give if you want to receive

This first verse outlines the overall problem. Namely, that supposedly nothing is free in life, except love.  Kind of the same concept as the Beatle’s song Can’t Buy Me Love without the carefree attitude towards the money that can’t get what the singer wants.  It also shows a bit of parallelism between how money works and how love works, giving in order to receive.

I’d give a penny for your thoughts
The world for one kiss
Give my life for your love
Give it all for one wish
I would buy you the moon
And the stars up above
I could you buy most anything
But I can’t buy your love

I take back what I said earlier about the singer lacking the carefree attitude towards money that the singer in Can’t Buy Me Love, because the singer is willing to give up everything so that the woman he loves will love him, but the tone of the display of his wishes is more desperate than cheerful as the Beatle’s song was.  As the singer goes through the chorus it shows progression from smaller things to larger things and what he’d give to have the woman’s love.  The end of the chorus is also the only place in the song where we see actual rhyme.  This compared to his other songs that I’ve looked at so far has the least amount of rhyming in it.

When it comes to love and money
It seems the two go hand in hand
At least that’s what they say
About love these days
I just don’t understand
Yes I’d be a heathen if I were to believe
She could love me for who I am
I’d give it all away just to hear her say
I love my poor man

In this verse he bemoans the purported relationship between love and money that everyone says is true and says, “I guess I’m a heathen then, because I don’t believe it.” and declares that he would give it all away if she would say that she loved him though he was poor.  Speaking of ‘poor’  he uses it in a clever way as a pun instead of the normal ‘you poor, poor man.’  sense.

I would buy you the moon
And the stars up above
I could you buy most anything
But I can’t buy your love

Here he repeats the last four lines of the chorus to close out the song and give it a feel of completion and kind of leaves the audience with the implication that he did not win the love of the one he loved.

This is one of my favorite songs of his, because it talks about something really relevant.  Most people can relate to this sort of song, because just about everyone has money issues and in this age where commercials all say that money can buy happiness and improve your love life with all the things you can buy with it, people struggle with what is and isn’t appropriate to do to show one’s love for their loved one.  While the song is pretty plain in its words, not using too many poetic devices, it gets its point across and in my opinion is a great down-to-earth song.

The third song on Kevin Fowler’s album Beer, Bait and Ammo is Penny for Your Thoughts, a more serious song that talks about the very real problem of the role of money in modern day relationships and the stereotype that love requires money and vice versa.  There isn’t any real set rhyme scheme with this song, at most its slant rhyme.

Some folks put a price on everything
Cause nothin’ in life comes for free
Well love don’t cost money, just hard work and time
You’ve got to give if you want to receive

This first verse outlines the overall problem. Namely, that supposedly nothing is free in life, except love.  Kind of the same concept as the Beatle’s song Can’t Buy Me Love without the carefree attitude towards the money that can’t get what the singer wants.  It also shows a bit of parallelism between how money works and how love works, giving in order to receive.

I’d give a penny for your thoughts
The world for one kiss
Give my life for your love
Give it all for one wish
I would buy you the moon
And the stars up above
I could you buy most anything
But I can’t buy your love

I take back what I said earlier about the singer lacking the carefree attitude towards money that the singer in Can’t Buy Me Love, because the singer is willing to give up everything so that the woman he loves will love him, but the tone of the display of his wishes is more desperate than cheerful as the Beatle’s song was.  As the singer goes through the chorus it shows progression from smaller things to larger things and what he’d give to have the woman’s love.  The end of the chorus is also the only place in the song where we see actual rhyme.  This compared to his other songs that I’ve looked at so far has the least amount of rhyming in it.

When it comes to love and money
It seems the two go hand in hand
At least that’s what they say
About love these days
I just don’t understand
Yes I’d be a heathen if I were to believe
She could love me for who I am
I’d give it all away just to hear her say
I love my poor man

In this verse he bemoans the purported relationship between love and money that everyone says is true and says, “I guess I’m a heathen then, because I don’t believe it.” and declares that he would give it all away if she would say that she loved him though he was poor.  Speaking of ‘poor’  he uses it in a clever way as a pun instead of the normal ‘you poor, poor man.’  sense.

I would buy you the moon
And the stars up above
I could you buy most anything
But I can’t buy your love

Here he repeats the last four lines of the chorus to close out the song and give it a feel of completion and kind of leaves the audience with the implication that he did not win the love of the one he loved.

This is one of my favorite songs of his, because it talks about something really relevant.  Most people can relate to this sort of song, because just about everyone has money issues and in this age where commercials all say that money can buy happiness and improve your love life with all the things you can buy with it, people struggle with what is and isn’t appropriate to do to show one’s love for their loved one.  While the song is pretty plain in its words, not using too many poetic devices, it gets its point across and in my opinion is a great down-to-earth song.

Kevin Fowler — Butterbean

May 2, 2009

The second song on the album is called Butterbean, a semi-saccharin song where the narrator describes the object of his infatuation.  The first thing ‘that I’ll say about this song is that it is very silly, you don’t even have to hear the song sung to notice that.  It has a consistent AABB rhyme scheme to the main verses with the exception of verse 2.  The chorus, which is repeated  4 times has a rhyme scheme of AAAA.  It is upbeat and cheerful and demonstrates just what can happen when someone becomes lovestruck!

Many times I’ve been told,
“That old gal ain’t got no soul
She’ll chew you up, spit you out
Leave you boy, there ain’t no doubt.”
Other men say she’s mean
That side of her I ain’t ever seen
A little sugar, a lot of spice
A little naughty, a little nice

The narrator here begins talking about how everyone talks about the woman he’s in love with.  She is apparently someone who leads guys on and then dumps them for fun, but the narrator’s convinced she’s the one for him.  This seems a bit familiar, doesn’t it?  The last song was about how the narrator finds a woman who seems to be everything he wants, but then turns out to be way more than he can handle.  If Kevin Fowler was meaning to put together a coherent narrative, this could be taken to be the prequel to Speak of the Devil or at least it’s thematic spiritual successor.

Another thing about this verse is that the overall tone is banter-y; you can imagine the narrator and his friends at a bar and after the narrator reveals who his new girlfriend is his friends all laugh and then, hushed at first, give him a warning, then after the narrator responds with disbelief they tell him exactly what they think she’ll do, because that’s what happened to them.  Obviously this doesn’t detour the narrator who goes on to describe her with stereotypical terms of endearment.

Chorus:
She’s my little butterbean
The cutest thing you’ve ever seen
Oh my little Texas queen
She’s my little butterbean

Speaking of terms of endearment, 75% of the chorus is nothing BUT terms of endearment.  Out of all the song, this has to be the most sugary, saccharin, mushy part.  Of course, this is the point, the narrator’s infatuated and that tends to bring out the silly in everyone.  Not much else to talk about here.

Well I met her down in San Antone
Those local boys left her alone
They all said she was the devil’s one and only child
I don’t believe it
Not one word
There ain’t one thing I’ve ever heard
They’ll never change the way I feel
That girl’s got me head over heels

Now we flash back to when they met and again we find the imagery that echoes the previous song.  The theme of her being untrustworthy apparently was not new and her reputation was so bad that all the guys ignored her.  Once again, the narrator refuses to listen to what the others say and admits to being completely absorbed in her.  In this verse we find a few instances of alliteration with ‘local boys left,’ ‘one word,’  and ‘girl’s got me head over heels.’  The narrator also continues the pattern of telling what others say before rebutting with his own opinion.

My little Lonestar hootchie-coo
Well I’ve chased her plum to Timbuktu
She’s gone from Fort Worth to Abilene
And every roadhouse in-between
She’s as hot as cakes on a griddle
That girl goes wild when the bow hits the fiddle
She loves to swing and do-se-do
That’s why I love her so

In this last verse, he breaks off from talking about what others say about his girlfriend to what his experiences with her are.  Apparently he turned out to be a bit to hot for HER to handle, because the narrator follows her wherever she goes in order to win her affection.  This stands in contrast to my earlier musing about this being a prequel to Speak of the Devil, but thematically it still could be counted as a spiritual successor.  Large use of hyperbole here and great imagery about them going dancing.

Overall, Butterbean is a cheerful, silly song about a man’s infatuation with the local troublemaker and how it seems to end well.  This isn’t one of my favorite songs just because of how sugary and corny it is, but then again I’m the type of person who likes songs with layers of meaning for the most part.  As for relating to other songs, it provides a kind of antithesis to Speak of the Devil where the narrator was faced with a seemingly innocent woman who turns out to make him miserable, because this time the tables seem to be turned and they both end up together and happy in the end.  The next song I’ll be analyzing is Penny for Your Thoughts, look for it next Tuesday, I promise I’ll be better about updating on time!

Kevin Fowler — Speak of the Devil

April 18, 2009

Speak of the Devil is an upbeat, fun narrative that talks about an experience with someone who was not as she appeared to be.  The narrator starts out by describing the initial situation  as ‘life saving,’ finding this woman who is seemingly what he’s been looking for, but as he finds out, she ends up being a bit too hot to handle.

Heaven sent an angel to me to save me from life’s misery
She seemed to fall right outta the sky
I caught her here in my arms
Well life was pretty peachy things were really keen
All the sudden that ol‘ gal got mean
Her wings fell off she started turnin’ red
And that old broken halo fell right off of her head yeah…

In the first stanza there is a fun reversal that happens between the first three lines and the last three.  The first all talk about the initial situation and how he was relieved to find her and with the ‘I caught her here in my arms’ line implies that he thought he might be saving her from the ‘fall’ too.  Then there comes the 4th line which continues the happy theme of the firs two, but it leads right into the last three where she shows her true colors.  Alternatively this stanza could be  interpreted as him having  been in a bad relationship, extremely desperate and glad to find someone else and in the last three lines of the first stanza just realizing that she’s not all that he thought she was.  Either way, the imagery of the fallen angel fits well with the theme of someone misrepresenting him or herself.

Chorus:
Speak of the devil here she comes
Yeah, she’s got this poor boy on the run
Oh, I swear she’s got horns and a tail
A pitchfork and a book of spells
Speak of the devil here she comes, and here I go!

The chorus puts a slight spin on the common English idiom ‘speak of the devil and he will come.’  The chorus uses the classical imagery of the devil with his tail, horns, and pitchfork, however he adds a spellbook, which  wouldn’t normally make sense, since if you’re going with the classical  superstition, the devil would have been the source of a witch’s power and wouldn’t need a spellbook.  Of course, it does here, since in his allusion to witchcraft he’s indirectly calling this woman a witch as well.  It also implies that she’s found him talking to us before he excuses himself.

Fallen angel fell from grace
They kicked her out of that heavenly place
She was a raisin’ hell and breakin’ all the rules
Tellin’ lies, breakin’ hearts, being mean and cruel
So now she’s down here on earth doin’ the devil’s dirty work
Stealin’ the soul of every man she can find
Sweet lips and pretty eyes oh they were a thin disguise
My little angel was a devil all along oh…

Here he continues his fallen angel metaphor and in gossip style talks about how she must’ve been like in the past.  Aside from the continuing metaphor and the reiteration that she deceived him with her looks, there isn’t much else to look at here.

Tryin’ to duck, tryin’ to dodge, tryin’ to shake her
Nowhere to run, nowhere to hide, I can’t escape her
She’s everywhere I go she knows my every move
Oh I know I’m bound to lose

In this bridge before the final chorus he shows how desperate he is to get away from her (which if we went for interpretation B of the first stanza would make it a clever parallelism!).  He also reveals that she’s also somewhat of a stalker, showing up wherever he goes to get away from her.

Overall it is just a fun song about misleading appearances.  I know some of Kevin Fowler’s songs are based off of real experiences from what I’ve read, however I don’t know if this one is or not.  It makes clever use of a common saying and creative use of well known imagery, while this isn’t my favorite song on the album, it is fun to listen and sing along to.

The next song up on the list is Butterbean which I’ll have up sometime next week.  I’m going to be going to a convention and don’t know if I’ll have internet access, so the earliest I can guarantee it is next Thursday, however it could come earlier depending on what happens.   I plan on eventually getting a steady schedule of two updates a week on Tues and Thurs, but we’ll have to see how that works out.  I hope you all enjoyed, please leave comments on how I can do better.

Ryan

Kevin Fowler — Beer, Bait, and Ammo

April 14, 2009

Since I haven’t finished getting my first analyses written, I decided to give a brief introduction to both Kevin Fowler and the album that I’ll be covering.  So first off, here’s a small introduction to Kevin Fowler:

Kevin Fowler is a country music artist from Amarillo, TX and is quite popular all around the state. He started out his career by joining the hard rock band Dangerous Toys after attending the Guitar Institute of Technology. After that he started his own southern hard rock band Thumderfoot, but after a while he decided that he wanted to get back to his roots and play country like the music he grew up listening to. So he started a new band and began playing in Austin, TX. In 2000 he recorded his first album Beer, Bait and Ammo. Since then he has released four other albums and tours all around Texas as well as south and western states.

The album Beer, Bait and Ammo consists of twelve songs

  1. Speak of the Devil
  2. Butterbean
  3. Penny for Your Thoughts
  4. Hellbent for a Heartache
  5. I Found Out the Hard Way
  6. If These Old Walls Could Talk
  7. Beer, Bait and Ammo
  8. Read Between the Lines
  9. You Could’ve Had It All
  10. J.O.B.
  11. Drinkin’ Days
  12. 100% Texan

I’ll work on getting the first analysis up sometime Friday evening, but for now I apologize for the delay and hope you enjoyed the filler.