Sage Ramblings

Liner Notes

January 2001

The original title of this recording was 'Sage Ramblings… and a Graham Cracker Crust'. I finally decided it was too long for the label but I think it's a bit more representative of the material.

It was certainly a new beginning for me when the first CD was completed. I truly wanted to continue my recording career. It certainly didn't take long to compile another batch of terrific material from my act. And this time I put in a couple of original tunes as well. However, it did take five weeks longer to record this album over the previous CD 'Sandy Clams'. I reckon that works out to be a little over ten cases of beer!

A brief relationship with an exotic woman was a real eye opener for me. One of her favorite songs was Beyond the Sea’. I was in a bar in Ft Lauderdale at 2am when this song started on the jukebox. I'd never been exposed to Bobby Darin before. All the babes knew all the words even though the song was around 40 years old. This particular arrangement was inspired by a version I heard from George Benson. Someone dances every time I play it.

‘Best of Me’ is a song added to my presentation just after finishing a stint on Grand Cayman . All over that island you could hear this song blasting from jeep stereos as they passed. It has the same classic message of most Caribbean music...'how can I be so misunderstood?'

In 1965 we could all sit by the AM radio and listen to the Young Rascals recording of Groovin'. The song has come to conjure up visions of whimsical days in paradise, shunning worldly demands and embracing life as well as your family. Steeling off on a weekend getaway; loving people living life hand in hand. Now we have cell phones.

Living on a lake in South Florida is great. The nights are clear and still and all the sounds on the water come wafting through the open windows like a breeze…whether you wish it or not. My neighbors opposite the lake had a little obsession with Love the Way’. They had put the song on perpetual repeat. It was coming across the water pretty loud. So I got out my cheap ass recorder and taped it…then it suddenly stopped. I listened to it the next day and discovered I like it a lot. Now you can hear it too! Jorge Santana recorded this song on a now near impossible to locate vinyl album.

For some reason I love to collect humorous songs. They're a bit predictable since the pay off is always at the last verse. Never the less, You Can't Get’ is worth the wait. It relates the simple odyssey of a chance encounter between possible lovers and the attitudes that unfold. It has a snappy Caribbean beat and spoofs that 'jumping to conclusions' mindset.

I guess this might have been the 'title song' from the CD. It certainly blends well with this great cover photo. Certainly when Jimmy Buffett wrote Lone Palm’ he was thinking of this view. The song itself is a bit reflective. As an album title, it even alludes to the other songs as sentiments you might experience while seated there. It speaks volumes about past relationships. The only thing missing is a beer cooler and a few chairs.

The harmonica is an old fashioned instrument. It's truly portable and so easy to rehearse being always with you. This is a great addition for a saloon singer since nearly everyone has given it a try. Shanty’ came along in the early seventies. I was playing a lot of corner pubs in those days. I always get wondering stares from the crowd when it's performed. The song deals with a relaxation technique that has fallen into socially unacceptable behavior! Still, it has a nice blues shuffle. Besides, my brother Dave is a big harmonica fan!

I couldn't resist recording at least one song with only the acoustic guitar. ‘Blackbird’ has been a personal favorite ever since Lennon and McCartney wrote it for the White Album in 1970. Every guitar player has his or her own way of playing it. At the time there were few acoustic tunes written so eloquently. This is the style of music I most enjoy.

I lived in San Diego for a while as well. It was a bit on the chilly side for me (I was freezing) but otherwise the city was an awesome place. Home Again’ was written just after returning to South Florida . The song was written more than 10 years ago. Sometimes you go out looking for resolution and find it. Otherwise you wait for things to fade away. It was my first effort at making all the gear obedient to me and then crafting a melody. I wonder if the world is ready for an album of all original music?

This is an instrumental from me. I was hoping to voice the experience of exploring an ocean beach cove. Sometimes the water is in and sometimes no. Sometimes there is sandy flats and other times a rocky outcrop to scramble around. So when you listen to Tidal Cove’ try to imagine the sounds and discoveries. A voice calls to you and you answer. A bell sounds when you stumble upon something of value. Sometimes you may share a find; still other times you might keep an encounter to yourself. It's the experience that enthralls.

Well, there you have it. The cover photo is courtesy of NOAA. It's actually a very large and lovely photo of Vega Baja, one of the many stunning beaches along the coast of Puerto Rico . The photo on the CD itself is a snap shot from my trip to Costa Rica . It is a place called 'Rara Avis' (meaning rare birds) and sits at about 8000 feet elevation. This shack was the 'hotel'. There was no phone or electricity. All the water came from a cistern, but you couldn't drink it. Most of my friends were leaking from both ends. I was fine but rather bombed. I caught on early and drank nothing but Imperial Beer all day for weeks!

I want to thank the good people at Other World Studios in Fort Lauderdale , Florida , who handled the mastering of this CD. They were very patient with these unique origins and helped bring out the best. Many thanks to the folks at Trackmaster, also in Fort Lauderdale , they expertly managed all the packaging and printing.

I hope to begin work shortly on a collection of performances singing along only with the acoustic guitar. Such a sound was common place a while back and now is seldom heard. It is also the reason I became an entertainer in the first place…to sing these songs for you!

All the best,


Steve D


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