Tag Archives: songs


Episode #113: Tenderness (Strongest Memories) (Song starts at 5:17 )

This song came along when I was sitting at the piano, letting my hands wander on the keys. Some nice chords came through. I opened my eyes, looked up and saw the seascape painting hanging above the piano. 

On this episode, I read an excerpt from an old diary. I thought for a change I’d try it. The very page I opened to happened to be the week I recorded my first podcast episode. Bizarre. 

And it includes my statement where I say I’m going to be publishing my how I paint, write songs, play piano, draw cartoons, compose videos and ebook, etc… And I will. I have these things underway. It’s just taking me a while.

I also recorded myself having a chat as I sat outside having breakfast with my cat… A bit of fun. It’s all a work in progress. 

There’s a lyric in this songs ‘Loves roulette wheel has no favourites’, which I like. Speaking of ‘Strong Memories’, the roulette wheel reminded me of an evening some years ago, when I took my daughter into the big city for the evening. That’s the beauty of art and music – all sorts of me memories are brought to the surface.  The strongest memories – and they’re the ones that seem to get stronger over time, each time they are recalled. 

By the way, my daughter wanted to see the city lights, see fireworks.  And meet the queen! How did We get on? Check out the podcast to find out…ha

The lyrics come to me very quickly. I have to scribble them down very quickly. Sometime the next line comes to me before I’ve finished the one I’m writing. But most often I have time to pause briefly and the next line then comes through. 

As I write, I look for cues from the previous line or lines.. Keys words that will need to be rhymed, or concepts that need further discussion, etc. it’s a fascinating process.

With the music, there’s a lot going on. Muscle memory is guiding my fingers. The theory of what I’m doing is coming through like a horse race commentary, I guess…although it’s very subtle. But it must be there.. ” ok I’m in C, I can see it’s going up to C# now and into G with a D bass…” All the while, you’ve got this …door open to ..the muse or whatever wherever it is.. the source of ..unlimited beauty… 

It’s a privilege to be a songwriter, it really is. Had I managed to write 20 songs in my life that would’ve been great. As I happens, I now composed about 800 – all done for the pure pleasure of writing them. 

This song can be found on my piano vocal album ‘The Long Haul’. You can stream it at www.petepascoe.bandcamp.com 

The painting can be found on this week’s blog post, along with the lyrics to Tenderness (on my blog, I include the lyrics to the song featured on this podcast every week).

It all ties in together. I do have sheet music for this song. It’s not online yet but it will be. My students enjoy playing this song as a piano solo piece. 

I have a stack of sheet music of my compositions in various stages of completion. About 12 songs are available online, I hope that figure is in the hundreds within a year or two. 

Ok. In the meantime, join me for breakfast and then: back in time, in the CBD of Melbourne. And oh yeah, well dive right into having a look at the lyrics and the music of Tenderness (Strongest Memories). Here we go….

Made It Through

Episode #112: Made It Through   (Song starts at 7:31)

This song caught my eye to feature in this week’s episode. 

Each week when it comes time to record another episode, I enjoy just going with the flow. I leap in there and see what happens.

The threads appear as I go along and we just sort of see where chatting about the song takes us each week. It’s always a fun and there are always pleasant surprises. 

Sometimes my songs are based on reality, sometimes they’re sort of ‘made up’. 

The lyrics of today’s song just started out as a mystery. There was just a feeling I had..a bit of an Autumn/sad feeling. Once I’d sung a couple of verses of things that sprung to mind (about an imaginary person who (apparently) was going through a rough time, with a relationship), a musical interlude gave me time to reflect on my relationship with my now wife and I thought how bad it would feel if we sailed into (imaginary) troubled waters…and it lead me to the title… Made It Through.

As I record this episode, a bit of weather kicks in and you can hear it on the microphone. Most recording sessions would be cancelled as I have a tin roof and it’s not a soundproof room. But what the heck. I kept the tape rolling. And I’m glad I did. We made it through.

This song #623, started with a nice piano riff that came through my fingers one autumn afternoon, as I sat at the piano, waiting to teach an adult student. 

It really pays to write these things down. Not rocket science, but then… I’ve learned through experience. I’ve composed something and then a week later, I’ve looked blankly at a page of nonsensical minimal squiggles that meant absolutely nothing to me.

As a songwriter, I’ve been prolific over the years – just because I really love the process of writing a song – and I’ve been good at writing them down too. 

It’s nice to be introducing some songs here….sharing them in a very raw form, with a backstory and lots of other chat. 

Tonight I had the idea I’d record albums of songs from this podcast. Piano/vocal versions. That’d be fun. And produce the sheet music, etc…

I love how creative projects can lead on unexpectedly to another one. 

That’s how songs like ‘Made It Through’ happen. Each section leads to another that wouldn’t have came to be, if it hadn’t been for the first bit. 

Once I had the riff together, and sat with it.. Words started to come through. So sang and wrote them down and sang some more, and so on… 

It’s a fascinating process. 

Want to join me for more? Like to hear the piano/vocal version of this song, sung live in the studio?  Here we go…

By the way you can read the lyrics in this week’s blog post, and see the podcast episode art, if it doesn’t appear on the platform where you listen to your podcasts. 

www.petepascoe.wordpress.com.  Also I mention my paintings. You can view lots of seascapes here: www.petepascoe.com. I have an exhibition coming up later this year. So I’m painting flat out, presently. I put my brush down to record this episode. I’m glad I did. 

It’s always very much a pleasure to record episodes for this podcast. It’s been a very positive addition to weekly proceedings for me, I hope it is for you, too. I hope you’re enjoying tuning in each week.

With You

Episode #111: With You   (song starts at 2:45)

This episode features a song I wrote in 1993. Song #309 jumped out of my song book this week. 

I haven’t played this – or thought about it for that matter – for years, for some reason.

Perhaps this is a ‘universal’  love song for someone….for someone (if that makes sense). It also talks about a higher love that I think can be found (rediscovered – a bit like me rediscovering this song) during our time on earth.

I had to make sure I could still play it before I hit record. A quick play of the fingers on the keys and it all came to back to me. 

It really has been a journey of discovery on this podcast, picking out old songs that I’ve written and delving into them to see ‘what lies beneath the surface’. 

I think this particular song is a good match of music and lyrics. There is river imagery in this song ( just for a change, for me) so, like a river, I’ve come up with chords and melody that flow along, with subtle changes m like a peaceful ever. 

I mention Roger from Adelaide in this episode. He wrote to me recently, drawing my attention to the water imagery I use in my songs and musing on that to a degree. Roger wrote the initial lyrics to A Tincture Of Time (Episode #63, which I really enjoyed – both writing the song with Roger – & recording the process). I said in this episode that’s not something I often do (write song with others…).  I should said ‘other than with Paul Dredge from New Zealand’. We’ve written easily 100 songs together. 

The songs come with in a rush, generally. Both the words and the music. I edit these songs in a fun, creative manner. Each time I play my songs, I’m open to editing them – right up to the moment the tape rolls during recording. 

‘With You’ has a gentle rolling lilt. A country sort of feel. It’s probably one of the more honest love songs I’ve written. I guess that’s what brings in the ‘higher love’ element.

I mention the laughter of children in the lyrics. The pure joy of a child’s laughter is amazing. As an adult, when we rediscover that aspect of ourselves – and it’s often when it bubbles up by itself – it’s a surprise. 

Art and music can be a way to find that same sort of ‘simple’ joy. Looking at these songs and sharing what comes to mind gives me so much pleasure.

It’s so nice to know these episodes are streaming for people all around the world. I’m doing my bit to contribute something positive online. 

If you want to find more of my music and art, you can find plenty online. 13 albums (thus far), hundreds of paintings and cartoons, videos and writing. 

There’s plenty more to publish. I have composed 800+ songs. There’s a new album ‘The Untrodden Track’ that will be out shortly (folk rock, with Paul Dredge).

Ok here we go … Grab a cuppa maybe and sit back, relax, let me entertain you.

Lyrics are on this week’s Blog post www.petepascoe.wordpress.com

Lonely Path

Episode #110:  Lonely Path  (Song starts at 7:03)

I enjoyed singing and playing Lonely Path live for today’s episode. I do this sometimes. Other times I’ll select an old demo or maybe an album track. It adds variety along the way. It’s all a work in progress.

I played a gig today – and yesterday – at the village green. It’s a small village. A very nice community farmers market was on today. I’d shut my eyes as I started off singing and opened them after a couple of songs. 

I found myself pretty much surrounded by a decent crowd. They’d materialised very quietly, drawn by the music and were listening very closely. 

It’s the most rewarding thing when you get that response as a songwriter. What it means is: because these people don’t know the song they’re listening too, it had better be engaging emotionally and have whatever it takes as a performance to draw the listener in… and that’s what happened. 

Yesterday, on the green, the same thing happened but on a smaller scale. This time when I shut my eyes to start it was just myself, a few sculptors, a human performance artist coloured gold, being a statue. Interesting gig! I was hired to attract attention to this public art demonstration/event.  And… The ‘extra’ listener I drew in first was a fellow who had obviously had a big night out and hadn’t gone home. 

He came right into my personal space…I sensed him before I opened my eyes.. When I did he looked at me menacingly and said ” do I look angry to you? ”  I said “No, man, you look like you could do with a lie down.”

Which he did. He promptly lay down and appeared to pass out. After that, during the gig, every now and then he’d wake up appreciatively declare ” %}^% ing brilliant”, “Beautiful music”.  The sun shone and we looked after him. He was safe with us, the artists. 

So I played music rather like a soundscape for what was going on around me. 

I mention all this because the subject of today’s song. Lonely path. The fellow asleep next to me on the green yesterday was alone. I was alone playing. We are all alone, in a sense.

The song came about when one of my students asked me what it’s like to be a songwriter. I told him the usual stuff (rewarding, exhilarating, hard at times, a joy, etc). 

Immediately after he left, with a quiet laugh, I said to myself “It’s a lonely path.” 

So that’s where the song started. 

As an artist, there is a sort of a price to pay, somehow. It’s well worth it. But it does require long periods of contemplation, which requires solitude. A lonely word in itself, yet there is solace here. Times of regular reflection sure has its rewards.

So here we go, with a ‘heart my sleeve’ episode… here’s how I feel, being a songwriter, painter and poet. 

And.. of course, on this episode you’ll get to find out about more about how a song comes together. 

Here we go…

As usual, the lyrics are on this week’s blog post :  www.petepascoe.worpress.com (plus Seascapes, Cartoons and more).

You Can Hurt Them Worse (by leaving things unsaid)

Episode #109: You Can Hurt Them Worse (by leaving things unsaid) (song starts at 6:37)

There are so many different places to start writing a song.
Number one would be feeling, I would say. You can find it in a space within in yourself where you can be completely honest.
That doesn’t mean you have to wear your heart on your sleeve or hit prospective listeners over the head with the wet bus ticket of your therapy…
But I find that if I write from a place of honesty..the result is: the lyrics and the music are going to ring true.
This song was written back in 1986. It is song #12 in my song book. Yes, that’s going back a wee way.
The melody has stayed with me. Why ? It came from that honest place, from somewhere else (and from somewhere within…)
That process is somehow hard to pin down in words. But as I do my best to do that on this podcast, the thing that gets concepts across is….feeling. What I say (and sing) between the words helps to tell the story.
Which brings me to the lyrics of the song….You can hurt them worse by leaving things…unsaid. That’s the whole chorus!
As I recorded this episode, my eyes flicked onto the next page, and so I I’ve sung this one as well (shall we call it): ‘Are we in love’?
I find a similarity between the opening riffs of both songs. Then I discover this song somehow answers the feature song.
Ah the creative force. It’s a healing one, that’s for sure.
By the way, I’d like to suggest a new genre for music: ‘P.S.’ (petrol station). This relates to something that happened when I filled the car’s tank up recently.
I also talk about a gig I did back in 1986. Because this song took me right back in time.
Want to join me? Here we go….
Lyrics are on my blog: www.petepascoe.worpress.com (plus seascapes. Cartoons and more).

St Kilda

Episode #108: St Kilda  (Song starts at 7:42)

The Autumn weather has turned a little wintery here in Melbourne. I played 6 gigs in 7 days last week, which was pretty major after no gigs in 2 years, with the Covid lockdowns going on. 

The last 2 gigs I played were over the weekend and that was when the wintery breeze got up. These were outdoor gigs, so it was a bit nippy in the outdoor seated area. 

It reminded me of the time I was in St Kilda years ago, sitting in a bar after doing an acting and singing class. It was a cold, late Autumn rainy evening.

What did I do? Jumped on the tram & headed home. As the the tram rocked away in the night, I put pen to paper and wrote down the lyrics to the song featured on this episode.

There has never been a time where I have regretted having a go at writing some lyrics. Or poetry. Or music. Or painted a seascape or drawing a cartoon. I do a fair bit of that as well…you can check out my seascapes and cartoons here: www.petepascoe.com

I often start by writing down what is around me. So I observed the scene and made some mental notes…

Us songwriters are constantly aware of our surroundings. My life is my art. It’s a big commitment, I can tell you that. 

Looking back, it’s turned out to be great way to archive experiences I’ve had, in a way where the memories are accessible for others to appreciate. 

I do think being alive on planet earth is an amazing opportunity. Each day is a gift. 

Sure I have my ups and downs – we all do, but being so far down the artists path, I’ve noticed that all the music and art helps me…. while I create it, I’m completely in the moment. 

I don’t have time for all the little worries and concerns that can creep up on you over time when I’m doing art or music.

So for a good chunk of my woken hours, as I’m fully engaged in the arts, I’m in the moment. 

And that’s where you need to be as a songwriter. 

Just creating. Not judging – but definitely keeping an eye on what is coming through, editing as you go.

There’s are some funny anecdotes again this week – including the short time in my life when I became a thespian. I scored the lead in JC Superstar, back in the day…

Ok, join me me now in St Kilda, Melbourne. 

As I sit at my piano and chat, I’ll tell you a few stories and along the way I’ll show you how the song came together.

The version of St Kilda on this episode was recorded by Pete Pascoe and The Patient Hum. It’s on the album ‘This World Offers You’.  You can check it out on www.petepascoe.bandcamp.com


Yesterdays Race

Episode #107: Yesterday’s Race    (Song starts 2:48)

Hi there. This is the podcast where you can sit back, be entertained and informed and – learn a little about the art of songwriting. 

I make a point of saying I’m not here to tell you how to write a song- but I am going to share how I write a song.

I think it’s important to keep an eye on your surroundings. Relaxing, subdued lighting, maybe ‘shining up’ your creative space is a good idea. I have a collection of all sorts of knick- knacks in my studio. Bits of driftwood, ceramic flying pigs & art on the walls.

The thing that brings the room together is: all these odds and ends and art all speak to me emotionally.

So therefore, if I’m sitting in an environment like that, there’s a good chance that my mood is going to be affected by some of my surroundings…

Creative and relaxed. It’s a great combination, in fact, I’d say these two elements are crucial when it comes to trying to come up with something that’s original.

Yesterday’s Race is song #611. I enjoyed singing this song at a gig this week. It’s a relatively brief understated sort of song with a big message. 

I wrote it – and I deliver it –  in an understated manner. Sometimes quietly spoken words can be more effective than raising your voice. In fact most often, I think.

On that note, this song sort of paints a picture of hope. The lyrics ‘tell it like it is’, the state of the world, the fact that we need to change. 

Back in my 20s I read a book that crystallised for me the thought that if change is to take place – real change – it’ll have to come from the young people coming through. And we’ll have to educate them early on before on repeated patterns take a hold. 

These days, I’m enjoying teaching young people how to play the piano. I’ve been doing that for about 19 years now. I’m working away on producing educational video courses and ebooks on piano, composition, (and seascape painting and cartooning by the way).

So in my own quiet way, I’m bringing a lot of music and art into the world. And I’m well on my way to sharing my creative processes. 

Along the way, I’m trying to do my bit to make the world a better (more peaceful) place.

I’m really pleased with the way this podcast has developed. 

I hope you enjoy this gentle episode. 

My blog that in mention is www.petepascoe.wordpress.com .  I have 13 albums streaming now including www.petepascoe.bandcamp.com

Yesterday’s Race is from the piano vocal album The Long Haul. 

Fingers In The Trees

Episode #106: Fingers In The Trees  (Song starts at 5:52 & 26:00)

Autumn is a great time of year. It’s a season which really resonates with me for some reason.

I was camping in Bright, Victoria recently, camping by a stream (which you’ll get to listen to in this episode). The trees were all losing their leaves, the birds singing. 

The bare fingered trees are the image I had in mind when I wrote the song ‘Fingers In The Trees’. The sort of fingers that reach out against the twilight sky, the sunset. It’s quite an evocative image.

Who’s fingers are they? Who am I thinking of? Friends who are perhaps in another country, friends and family who perhaps may no longer be with me. 

Incidentally, the night I recorded this episode was exactly 24 years after I composed the song. I just noticed that as I read the lyrics and analysed the meaning of some of the lines. 

I love that about the creative realm, It constantly speaks to us, surprises is & plays with us – if we are open to tuning in.

And that’s exactly what you do as a songwriter. You open yourself up to another realm. It’s within us all, like a muscle, which gets stronger the more you use it. 

To have a song like this one in the song books, it sort of makes all those years of work,all the ups and downs so worth it. Well, they were worth it anyway…but now and then it seems you catch a special fish.

I’m reminded of another memory as I wrote. My very young daughter caught the tiniest, most delicate, beautiful golden fish when we were fishing together off a pier, a long time ago. 

I can see that fish, see the expression of wonder on her face (mine too, I sure). I remember the weather, the temperature, the season. It was Autumn. 

The thing about a song like ‘Fingers’, it brings back so many memories when I sing it. The hope is that listeners will have their own memories reawakened when they (you) listen to it. 

As a songwriter, you create a touchstone of sorts, I guess. It’s a great feeling.

Words and music are such a potent force, a powerful combination. 

So is the spoken word, especially when you speak from the heart, when your in the moment, just allowing want ever thoughts come to mind. 

That’s what I do each week here. Then all the images and ideas seem come together and theme emerges for each episode.

I hope you enjoy this week’s episode. There are two versions of the song this week. A piano/local version and a band version too. 

Blog www.petepascoe.wordpress.com.  The Hazy Line – Tales Of A Pianoman is a memoirs ‘work in progress’ sort of blog. 

The Roughest Cut by Pete Pascoe and The Patient Hum has Fingers In The Trees on it. Streaming now. 

Correction:  The Untrodden Track is the name of the upcoming album by Paul Dredge and myself (not the Roughest Track, which I mistakenly called it in this episode). 

What’s True To You

Episode #105: What’s True To You    (Song starts at 7:00 )

This is the podcast where you’re going to get to hear how it feels to be a songwriter, where the featured song of the week came from, some funny stories, etc. The idea being: to entertain and inform – and along the way hopefully shed some light on what is a very interesting creative process. 

Mistakes are a necessary part of learning. That’s what came to me, as I was listening back to the this song, reading through the lyrics. 

In this episode, I relate some mistakes I made in my life, including falling into a very cold lake, jumping a cliff unintentionally while skiing… And a ‘run in’ with a billy goat. 

The thing that linked these events was: I didn’t ‘listen to those who went before’, which is a line in the lyrics. Experience tells you that’s not a bad idea. We can look at other’s experiences to find out what’s true to us. Somehow, though there’s nothing like experiencing a few ups and downs along the way to early learn something.

When engaging with the creative realm, I think you’ve gotta be free and allow yourself to make mistakes. 

Keep everything you’ve learned firmly in hand…Then, as a composer, keep an open ear and an open mind for when a ‘good mistake’ happens.

It could be a unexpected melody note, a strange bass note , chord, etc. 

Ok, sometimes it’s like going off a cliff, completely out of control, like goofy – in mid air…(like my skiing accident) Sure. 

Other times it’s going to be something that catches your ear, your heart. At that moment it becomes a point of difference in your current music phrase – and may prove to be the beginning of the path toward a big chorus melody –  which you never would have hit on if you hadn’t been free enough in the first place to allow yourself to make mistakes.

Time and again, as I draw comparisons to events in my life with this creative process, it’s easy to see being human is a creative process.

That’s why I’ve opted for a very inclusive tone and manner in this podcast. You don’t have to be ‘musically inclined’ to understand what I’m talking about here.

Music and art should definitely be an inclusive realm. 99% of us have a voice, whether that’s singing, playing piano, knitting, counselling, whatever it may be.

I really find keeping a diary to be so helpful to sort out …what’s true to me. 

It’s a gradual unfolding, a gradual understand of the self as you grow up. You learn to accept different facets of your personality as they appear.

The thing about mistakes… it’s a good idea to keep an eye on yourself if you keep repeating the same mistakes. 

In my diary, things become clear to me somehow, over time.

A great way to collect and arrange these diary entries in a concise form is by turning them into art – like songwriting. 

‘What’s True To You’ is song # 585 in my song book. It was written in 2013. You can hear it on the album Don’t Miss The Bus at www.petepascoe.bandcamp.com. The lyrics are on this week’s blog post at www.petepascoe.wordpress.com.

By asking a question in the lyrics, ‘what’s true to you?’ It’s a way to get things across without sounding like you’re on some ‘holier than thou’ sort of soapbox. 

That is something I’d never want to be doing. 

The bridge lyrics are: ‘one step forward, a start it seems, two steps forward, one back it seems…on toward your art….’

And that in a nutshell is the creative process. It’ll take you somewhere, that’s for sure. 

So in this episode, come for a wander. I’ll take to a New Zealand ski field, a field in the middle of nowhere and a lake in the winter.

Oh, and there’s some piano here as I chat. I let my hands wander on the piano keys as I talk. Fingers ever at the ready to illustrate a point or …just create. 

I hope you enjoy this week’s episode. 


As Far As I Can Tell

Episode #104:  As Far As I Can Tell  (Song starts at 4:50)

Welcome. I love writing songs. There’s a 100-odd songs on this podcast, 13 albums on bandcamp, a selection on all the streaming platforms and YouTube channel, etc.

One of the reasons I’m these producing these episodes is to help people. I teach, as it turns out. 

I’m also an artist. The blank canvas can be so confronting…I tell people to just throw some paint on that canvas. Just make a start.

That’s what I do with songwriting. I never question what comes up. I just try to catch what comes through – and get out of the way.

As soon as I’ve started, I’m ‘on the breath’ – fully alert, waiting and ready for whatever else comes through. I’m prepared for any changes that happen and I’m free enough to give the new ideas a go.

It’s not a bad analogy for being free, to roll with the changes in life..

That’s what this song is about. It’s a love song. About the early days when you’re head over heels. 

There’s a line ‘the world’s got brighter colours’ – it’s like you’ve got a filter on your vision, the magic of life somehow seems more tangible… Ahh new love. 

This song is a concise, gentle ballad that explores this phenomenon of realising you’re in love. 

It’s an intimate song, I wrote it for my (now) wife back in 2012. When you pen a song like this, and share it to an audience, the great thing is: other people ‘get’ the emotion of the song. It speaks to them and they somehow take ownership of the song to a degree. 

The more I write about songwriting, the more I realise how good it is for me. It sure feels good to compose the songs and release them out in the world. 

It’s a path I’m very grateful to be on. 

I hope you enjoy the chat and the song. It’s a great way to share so much. Here we go…