Category Archives: original music - Page 4

new tune: undertones

I spent some time with my electric guitar putting down layer after layer one night without paying much attention to where it was going. After an hour or so, I listened to what I had and I was pretty excited. A couple of days later I got out of my car after work and was hit with some really simple lyrics. I tried singing them and that just didn’t work. So I sent them to my buddy Jason and he did them for me.

This is a draft and the final mix will be done when I have some additional things in there. But for now, it’s a fun listen. Enjoy!


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Undertones by J.C. Wilson is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
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new music: out of bounds [instrumental]

Here we go! Back to the “one new track per week” plan again. This year, I’m all over posting sketches and anything that is in progress. The track for today will (someday) have vocals and some other niceties, but I feel that it works pretty well as an instrumental.

For the past few months I have been all over the place stylistically and in this instance I am back in my acoustic guitar comfort zone. Have a listen and drop me a line.

Out Of Bounds

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Out Of Bounds by J.C. Wilson is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
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the green man collection

A few years back I recorded and released a hastily compiled album called The Green Man Collection. It was primarily solo acoustic guitar arrangements. It’s a sparse collection. The material is isolated, much like I was at the time it was recorded. The sessions, such as they were, consisted of me sitting by myself in the living room of a very drafty house in Iowa with GarageBand and a single mic. I cleaned up some of the tracks later after my move to Texas, but most of the work was done in the glow of street lamps and my laptop. Something like that sounds romantic when Bon Iver does it but in reality it’s just cold and lonely. I hope the music doesn’t feel that way.

I put the album out on a iTunes and emusic and other places. It sold well enough to recoup the cost of the CDs I pressed and the printer I bought to label them. Not bad for a first outing. Years later, it seems like it would make more sense to just put it out for free. So that’s what I’m doing. Feel free to download and enjoy!

01 charmed
02 elegy for a planter
03 lullaby for S
04 old friend
05 woodbox blues
06 open
07 strumming bird
08 nobody’s home
09 fantasy
10 e.o.w.
11 you are my sunshine (bonus track!)

Or you can get them in one big zip file: The Green Man Collection

Creative Commons License
The Greenman Collection by J.C. Wilson is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
Based on a work at
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at

Some New Music

My buddy Jason and I get together irregularly to sit around my living room, talk about music, and record whatever it is that we do. The results are often startling to us. Some things are just really good and some things, well, they’re fun. And funny. I edit out a lot of talking. I think that there was at least 30 minutes of recorded banter on the session from this past Sunday.

The results of our “work“ include:
        Perfect Sonnet by Bright Eyes
        Big Empty (country style) by Stone Temple Pilots
        Sparrow’s Wings an original composition with lyrics by our buddy Duff

If you have any trouble getting to the tunes, just hit this directory for scary stuff (updated sporadically):


I’ve been working dilligently in the studio but neglecting the blog for a while due to illness. When the head is stopped up with nasty stuff there isn’t much to say that’s worth typing. Things have picked up this week and there’s a lot of cool stuff going on in the studio. What’s not going on is what I had intended.

When I completed Nothing Of Consequence I assumed that I would be able to put away the electric guitar and pick up my fingerstyle acoustic tunes that I’d started before the summer. That didn’t work out. It seems that there is more to be done along the lines of what I just finished. There were more songs bubbling and in cases like that, there’s only so much fighting to be done. I pushed things for a week and at the end of it was pretty disappointed with the results. Time to follow the gut.

The track I’m working on now started as a series of wildly textured layers. I was using a technique that has served me well in getting things going. I hear a song and try to reproduce it in the studio. I never end up with what I start out to make. So I built this entire song around the idea of another one but I doubt anyone would be able to relate the two even if they were side by side. It’s been stuck in my head since and that’s a good sign. It’s also where things got weird.

When I got home last night, I had a raging headache. Pulling into the driveway I was struck with a lyric. I wrote it down when I got into the house. I should say that in high school I could churn out song lyrics like a machine. All that mattered was that the words had to rhyme and have some deeper meaning (an allusion to something from English class was always good). Big words were a bonus and if the listener (or singer) had to look them up, so much the better!

With time and experience came the realization that there is only one Neil Peart and what I was trying to do was pretty cringeworthy. I can’t help but pick through some of my older notebooks and stare in awe at my pretention. But it was pretentious with conviction! That’s the youth that is wasted on the young. That complete belief in one’s own abilities. I can’t wait to see my son get there.

What was written in the little notebook wasn’t all that bad. Very simple. No big words. Nice and declarative. A little sad maybe, but not the kind of sad where I’m writing in black ink on black paper (credit: H. Rollins). All in all, they were pretty spiffy.

Since they were now in my notebook, I decided to step up and sing them. Wow. That is one seriously unpleasant experience for me. I’m too picky to like the way I sing and lack the talent of someone who can afford not to be picky. I have nothing but respect for people who convert themselves into singers. It brings to mind cousin Dave who has done some really great singing lately with The Gary (check ’em out!) I’m not really sure did much singing before his stint with the band. Correct me if I’m wrong Dave! The point is that it wasn’t easy and anyone who is hoping for a link to last night’s efforts is going to be disappointed. Ain’t no way. It is completely experimental and highly toxic at this time. But I’m willing to put in some effort to see if I can make a go of it for a track here and there. No delusions of grandeur or assumptions that I’m good enough. The goal is to do it with conviction. If I can convince myself that the track sounds like it was sung by someone who believes in it, I will release it.

Otherwise, I’ll just put an over the top guitar solo over it and garble the voice with effects until it sounds like a malfunctioning tape deck.