Travis at Trav's Thoughts invites everyone to lay down a short set of music that takes their fancies for his 5 on Friday meme.
Today I'm handing the microphone over to my good friend Susan Helene Gottfried here at A Piece of My Mind. Susan is one of those people I can't wait to meet in real life - we've been blog friends for several years now, and the idea of kicking back and swapping stories at a pub while we shout over the music appeals like nothing else.
Until then, gather round kids - let's find out what kind of music inspired Susan's fictional rock band ShapeShifter.
*passing mic to Susan*
Even though Julia claims the whole world knows who my fictional band, ShapeShifter, is and what they're like, I am not so sure. That's because I was having a conversation with a good friend the other night and she was surprised when I drew a comparison between lead singer/rhythm guitarist Mitchell Voss and someone very real.
So let me start this 5 on Friday post by giving you an idea of what ShapeShifter sounds like - to me. I do encourage everyone to create their own image of ShapeShifter, and to let it change and evolve as you read my books and blog and get to know the guys.
1 - Harvester of Sorrow - Metallica
First off is one of my all-time favorite songs, hands-down. It's Metallica. The song is from the ...And Justice For All album.
Harvester of Sorrow. Moscow show; the language is friendlier, the sound is rawer. Plus the charming scenes of the Moscow security not getting it.
What do I love about this song? The guitar sound. It's vintage, it's powerful. Yep, if ShapeShifter were real, they'd head in this musical direction.
Drink up, shoot in
Let the beatings begin
Distributor of pain
Your loss becomes my gain
You'll suffer unto me
Harvester of sorrow
Language of the mad
Harvester of sorrow
- Hetfield / Ulrich
2 - Keep Away - Godsmack
Song #2 is easier. Sort of. It's Godsmack, and the song is Keep Away From Me. I'm not sure the song matters so much as the essence of Sully, the lead singer. He's sex personified - much as many of Mitchell's fans will tell you HE is.
This is how I often describe the band. Harvester of Sorrow meets Godsmack. In real life, I'm not sure it would work, but this is fiction.
Twisting everything around that you say, yeah
Smack me in my mouth
Two hundred times every other day
Oh, rag me, I don't hear you anymore, not yet
Find out what it means to me
I don't know who you are
Do like I told you
Stay away from me
Never misunderstand me
Keep away from me
- Salvatore Erna
3 - November Rain - Guns N' Roses
One of Trevor's most devoted fans - she convinces her friends to buy my books on a regular basis, in between nudging me for more from the man - says Guns n' Roses' November Rain makes her think of Trevor. It's a ballad, sung by tough-guy Axl Rose. Like Trevor himself, it's epic. And like Trevor himself, it's not what you'd expect from the guy.
Cause nothing lasts forever
And we both know hearts can change
And it's hard to hold a candle
In the cold November rain
Do you need some time on your own?
Do you need some time all alone?
Everybody needs some time on their own
Don't you know you need some time all alone
So never mind the darkness
We still can find a way
Cause nothing lasts forever
Even cold November rain
Don't you think that you need somebody?
Don't you think that you need someone?
Everybody needs somebody
You're not the only one
- Hudson / McKagan / Reed / Rose / Sorum / Stradlin
4 - Turn the Page - Metallica
Song #4 is an oldie but one of my all-time favorite songs. It has less to do with ShapeShifter directly and more with Trevor's Song. It's Bob Seger's Turn the Page, one of THE ultimate road dog songs of all time. This is a pretty recent version done by Metallica, who took an amazing song and elevated it to a level I'd never imagined.
This song fits because I'd originally wanted Trevor's Song to be a road dog book. Then, of course, Trevor took control and made it into what it is now - a better book.
Out there in the spotlight
You're a million miles away
Every ounce of energy
You try and give away
As the sweat pours out your body
Like the music that you play
Later in the evening
As you lie awake in bed
With the echoes of the amplifiers
Ringing in your head
You smoke the day's last cigarette
Remembering what she said
What she said
Yeah, and here I am
On the road again
There I am, up on that stage
Here I go playing star again
There I go, turn the page
- Bob Seger
5 - Prayer - Disturbed
It wasn't easy to think of a song that best describes Mitchell. He's very complex and some of his moodiness is entirely an act. I had to think of music that's deceptive. Powerful yet contained. Promising to blow free, yet at the same time, smooth and likable.
Who else but Disturbed fits that bill? David Draiman's voice is like honey, but his staccato delivery suggests there's something more going on underneath it all.
This song is called Prayer, and it's one of my all-time favorites from Disturbed. On the surface, it seems one thing but underneath, you'll feel the power and the contradictions and all the goodness, waiting to explode. It reminds me of Mitchell, complete with his moody passion.
Let me enlighten you
This is the way I pray
Living just isn't hard enough
Burn me alive inside
Living my life's not hard enough
Take everything away
Return to me
Turn to me
Leave me no one
You've made me turn away
- Donegan / Draiman / Kmak / Wengren
CLICK HERE to watch the video
Check out ShapeShifter's Musical Hanukkah Celebration over at Susan's contest page. During November and December, Susan will be donating 50% of her book sales to the Mr. Holland's Opus Foundation. This program ensures music students at schools and community centres, as well as individual students, have actual instruments with which to practice.