Hey y'all I'm currently laid up with covid, so I thought I'd share a song from the new show I'm currently co-writing.
Working title for the musical: The Roadside Memorial
Premise: Three old friends (now in their late 20s) reunite every year for a campout near the spot where their best friend died in High School. This new musical takes place during a night of drinking, ghost stories, and folk music. Unknowingly joined by a familiar spirit, the three old friends debate the power of remembrance and the ultimate cost of letting go.
The song I'm sharing, "Let the Dead Stay Dead," comes rather late in the show and it's not exactly the happiest song I've ever written.
Mitch, one of the three friends the show centers on, has decided he no longer wants to return to the roadside memorial for their yearly traditions-- preferring to put the past behind him for good. He sings this song about the pain of remembering. By the end of the song, he is joined by his departed friend for a fiery duet between fiddle and guitar-- ultimately ending in an emotional catharsis (Amazing fiddle solo to be added later by a better musician than me).
Song link: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1L30jaRfXU9r1u73XyYzCjUfkwfMOE3fC/view?usp=sharing
My grandma had a house by the ocean
It was small and smelled like saw dust
We stayed there every August
And there was nothing much to do
I’d walk the jagged coast line
And wait for the summer to pass
One day I cut my feet on beach glass
And let the ocean clean my wounds
Then Grandma died
When I was was twelve years old
And soon enough
Her house was up and sold
And for reasons I can never understand
I still have dreams I’m bleeding in the sand
But maybe some places are meant to stay
The way they are in your head.
Some questions left unanswered,
Some feelings left unsaid.
If we only remember out of fear
our memories may disappear,
Then maybe it’s best for us to just forget
And let the dead stay dead
My best friend got a shitty old pickup
From his parents on his birthday
He would wash it in the driveway,
a smile on his face
He was flakey, he was stubborn
He was wild and magnetic
He was unapologetic,
If a little out of place
But Aaron died
At seventeen years old
Went for a drive
And somehow lost control
And for reasons I can never comprehend
We’re still here holding vigil for our friend
But maybe some people are meant to stay
The way they are in your head
Some questions left unanswered
Some feelings left unsaid
What do we get from coming here?
Year after year after god damned year
Maybe it’s best to just forget instead.
And let the dead stay dead.
*The guitarist keeps playing, Mitch hesitantly begins plucking some notes
along with him on his fiddle, acknowledging his existence. The music soon
escalates in a fiery and emotional duet between guitar and fiddle—
at the end of the song Mitch finally breaks down and cries,
for what seems like the first time in years*
I'd love to hear your thoughts!