SpinTunes 12 Round 2 Song Bio - Singalong

Car-aoke - Write a quintessential road trip song.

After the judges declined to clarify that vague challenge I was left with to define my own criteria for the challenge. I felt the song needed to be about travelling, probably a car journey. I had two ideas, one of which was about SpinTunes itself so I immediately rejected it. The other was to write a song about the Syrian refugees, certainly an interesting journey. Whilst none of it involved a car its not mentioned in the challenge so whatever.

I happened to be staying at a friend's when the challenge was posted and she gave me a different take: a song everyone could singalong with on a car journey. I liked the counting aspect of songs like '99 Bottles of Beer', combine that with a journey and I decided to make my repeating section about time passing. As soon as I started writing '1 month, 2 months, ect' the idea of a developing pregnancy entered the lyrics.

Since the song was designed to be fun why not make it a children's song? I've always been intrigued by the dark source material of old nursery rhymes like 'Ring a Ring o' Roses'. Writing the song from the POV of child allowed me to reference dangerous events like the sea crossing to Greece, knowing the audience would understand the gravitas where the child does not.

All of this was figured out within hours of hearing the challenge. At last: a quick good idea of SpinTunes! All that complaining on Facebook paid off!

Then came the composition: I wrote the song in ragas rather than utilise western scales and used ethnic instruments to try and imbue it with an Arabic feel. Does it sound like an authentic Syrian singalong...? Not really. I hope it at least sounds Asian but I worry the chorus sounds too much like an English folk refrain.

The lyrics were hard going, writing in a childish manner didn't help matters. Its been my goal for this ST to focus on narrative clarity and I think I've done a good job in both rounds so far. To keep the family singalong element in the song I went with three unique bridge/choruses in the middle. I imagine the sections about the boat and the train to have hand motions.

I didn't play a single instrument on the track, its all programmed. The vocals took two and a half hours, largely because of the 12 part 'choir' duet. I did my best but the lead vocals are pretty weak. Its an ambitious melody (for me) and the (sorta) Arabic melisma had to be limited because I just couldn't sing it.

How is this song going to do? As a technical experiment it was interesting but it was my first attempt at Syrian and children's music, I worry... Its strange, my round one song was my first attempt at comedy. Trying new things is all well and good but I'd like to write an actual Emperor Gum song this contest. ;)
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