Tag Archives: fame

All the way up… I was lookin’ back

25 Guitars

Everybody there used to be somebody once…

Everyone had a story. Some had been factory workers laid off from a string of jobs. A couple had been suits, grinding away in corporate offices. There was an accountant. He liked to joke that he’d help the others with their taxes for a swig of Mad Dog 20/20.

For a while, there was even a doctor, a foreign guy who’d been caught overprescribing. Word was he’d overpribed half the inland empire and, when he lost his license and his world came down around him, warrants out for his arrest, the doc had run away, eventually spending all his cash and ending up under the wide overpass, on the railroad right-of-way… not more than a quarter mile from the harbor. With the rest of the nobodies who used to be somebody.

When people asked the lanky, long-haired guy with the cloudy blue eyes for his story, he kept it simple:

“One day… I just fell.”

That was it. All you could get out of him. He kept to himself and slept somewhere else, only coming into the encampment to trade and occasionally score something to take the edge off. Folks said he drank — but he drank alone. Someone said he often sat by the bluffs along the beach, a pony bottle in an inside pocket of his worn, gray parka.

One day some college kids came down into the camp.

“We heard about this guy, here. He used to be a rock star.” They said a name and a younger guy with half his teeth missing, taping a battered baby stroller back together with duct tape said, “Yeah, I heard of him.”

The college kids passed around a photo. It was one of those head and shoulder shots with the top of a guitar showing and a rough and chipped brick wall in the background.

“Oh, yeah. That guy. He comes around here maybe once or twice a week. He’s kind of a loner. So… what? He was a big rock star? When?”

When? A long, long time ago, indeed. A million miles and ten thousand years ago.

A condo, a fiance, a fancy car, an agent, a dog, and 25 guitars ago…

25 Guitars

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Tuesday, December 06, 2005

25 Guitars

Go back home and
tell all the kids
this is what it’s like
when their hero hits the skids

go out to the farm and
tell my ma and pa
the higher you climb
the farther you must fall

I started out thinking
that I’d always know the score
now I hardly know
what I was counting for

I lost my one true love
my agent and my car
my condo and my dog
and twenty five guitars

but baby I was lost before
I ever got to town
I threw the map away
the day I let you down

yeah I hit the big time
but the big time it hits back
and all the way up
I was looking back

Wake me up and say its all a dream
we could drink coffee and talk about what it all means
I dreamed I dreamed I threw it all away
If I could just wake up back in your arms today

I was on the fat side of heaven
how come it felt like hell
each day was a struggle
one day I just fell

The bottom dropped out
I laughed the whole way down
with a noose around yer neck
LA is a much nicer town

Wake me up and say its all a dream
we could drink coffee and talk about what it all means
I dreamed I dreamed I threw it all away
If I could just wake up back in your arms today

Go back home and tell all the kids
this is what it’s like when their hero hits the skids

(C)1997, 2007, TK Major



Get Down BabyThere was one thing on my mind when I wrote this song.

I wanted to get in the line, “Get down, baby, get out tonight” — in something that couldn’t be mistaken for a party song.

And I think I nailed that aspect. No one will party to this song and if they do, well, I’m not responsible.

I was thinking about this song after the fact and realized that it fits nicely into my plans to re-invent myself as a bitter old has been. As opposed, you know, to a bitter old never was. It’s probably a minor distinction to most folks, I suppose, but I think my brothers and sisters in the music biz will appreciate it. At any rate, I have a song, Tell All the Kids, that’s specifically about my fall from grace. Or the fall from grace I never had. But, anyhow, that ain’t this song.

So, as this song spilled out not quite a decade ago, I realized I was telling its story from the point of view of some imaginary, long-suffering rockstar, addressing, for what he evidently hopes is the last time, his histrionic, soon-to-be-ex-girlfriend as she pursues a theatrically anguished voguing session attop the retaining wall of his penthouse terrace.

Get down, baby.

AYoS acoustic version:

produced version:


AKA Get Down Baby (Get Out Tonight)

Everywhere it sez you love me
but ya never read the truth
’cause when I look into your eyes
I can see who’s getting screwed

Get down, baby. Get packed,
get out tonight.
You’re gone, baby,
that’s right you heard me right.

A secret’s not a secret
unless it has been told
our private life’s not really ours
until all the rights are sold.

Get down, baby…

you will get some mileage
from that small town trollop trip
but the journey’s strictly one way, babe
and heavenward ain’t it

Get down, baby…

history will tell us
all about the truth
until that time I’ll do fine
your quickie paperback will do

Get down, baby…
get packed, get out tonight
you’re gone
that’s right
you heard me right


(C) 2005, TK Major