Monday, February 1, 2010

New Song: Henri Rousseau

This song, "Henri Rousseau," was inspired by my trip to Paris a few years ago.  Rousseau was a French painter that I learned about while visiting the Musee d'Orsay.   After browsing the work of renown Impressionists, like Monet, Renoir, Degas, and Cezanne, I recall turning the corner on the top floor of the museum and stumbling upon paintings by Rousseau -- who I had never heard of before.  Not only did his paintings stand out, but his story was quite engaging, as well.  In fact, any of you who maintain an artistic hobby -- or any hobby, for that matter -- on the side of a demanding day job, would probably find some inspiration in Rousseau's biography.  A self-taught painter, Rousseau was the son of a plumber and worked regular jobs for much of his life, until he finally started painting seriously at the age of 49.  In a previous blog post, I describe in greater detail what this song is about (to me).  Take a look at that post if you haven't seen it, yet.  And if you have, let me know if you guessed that it was Rousseau that I was writing about.

While I wrote the lyrics for this song a couple of years ago, I didn't write the music until last year.  Then, over this past Christmas break, I found a couple of hours to sit down in front of a video camera and record a few of the songs I'd been working on -- including this one.

These days, I don't have much time to set up mics, do a bunch of takes, or do much editing.  And I've given up on trying to do anything special with the lighting and backdrop, especially as my make-shift "home studio" has long been converted into my daughter's nursery.  But I've continued to write and I've decided that it's been no fun sitting on these songs, waiting to work on an album that may never happen.  So I'm going to start putting some more stuff out there, worrying less about the flaws and polish, and just doing what I can with the time that I have.  Not unlike what Monsieur Rousseau must have done, I imagine.