“Last Night In Mendocino”

 
       
 
Jun 12, 2018, 09:17 PM

“Last Night In Mendocino”,
copyright June 11, 2018
by Gary E. Andrews.
All Rights Reserved

(Introductory Movement 4 bars)
C Dm G G

(Verse 1)

C/G (C/G bass)
I just want to
Dm
thank you, For your
G time last night with
C/G
me,
C/G
Dinner at the
Dm
restaurant, Our
G walk along the
C/G
beach.
Dm
Thank you for the
G simple tune, You
C/G
sang beneath the
Am
crescent moon,
Dm
Last Night
G In Mendo-
C/G
cino.
Dm G

(Verse 2)
C/G
I just want to
Dm
thank you, For your
G kiss upon my
C/G
cheek. We
C/G
said ‘Good night!’ at
Dm
three a.m. I
G never felt so
C/G
free.
Dm
Thank you for the
G simple tune, You
C/G
sang beneath the
Am
crescent moon,
Dm
Last Night
G In Mendo-
C/G
cino.
Dm G

(Bridge)
Dm
Driving through the
G desert now,
C/G
On my way to
Am
Reno,
Dm
I miss the coolness
G of your kiss,
Dm
Last Night
G In Mendo-
C/G
cino.
Dm G

C/G
I just want to
Dm
thank you. I
G know it’s too late to
C/G
call. I
C/G
just got back and
Dm
wanted you, To
G know I meant it
C/G
all.
Dm
Thank you for your
G simple tune,
You
C/G
sang beneath the
Am
crescent moon,
Dm
Last Night
G In Mendo-
C/G
cino.

(Coda)
Last Night In Mendocino.
Last Night In Mendocino.
(Fading)
Last Night In Mendocino.

[ Edited: 13 June 2018 09:36 PM by Gary E. Andrews]

There will always be another song to be written. Someone will write it. Why not you? http://www.garyeandrews.com

 
     
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Gary E. Andrews Joined Apr 12, 2005
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Jun 13, 2018, 06:54 PM

Hi Gary

Wonderful lyrics. I found myself singing as I read them (which I’m not supposed to do because I’ve got a chest cold, but couldn’t help myself).

When I look at polishing a song, I always look for the weakest point. It helps me to get the best out of a lyric. When I look at your lyrics, for me the weak point is this stanza….

Driving through the desert now,
On my way to Reno,
I miss the coolness of your kiss,
Last Night
In Mendocino

Now, I’m being really picky here because it’s already a fantastic, visual lyric. I hit a speed bump in my singing with the line “on my way to Reno.” All the other lines in the song are so poetic and rhythmic, that “on my way to Reno” just seemed to fall flat. Perhaps something more specific like “two hours out of Reno.” I don’t know if the extra syllable messes things up for you though. Just a thought. Also, it’s possible that the line “I miss the coolness of your kiss last night in Mendocino” could be misinterpreted. I don’t know what to suggest there that doesn’t mess with your syllable count. “as I remember Mendocino” has too many; “heat of your kiss” has too few. I’ll leave it with you.  :)

Such a good song Gary.

Jen

https://soundcloud.com/jennystokes-nz
http://www.evansandstokes.com

“One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain”
- Bob Marley

 
     
Jenny Stokes Joined Sep 24, 2015
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Jun 13, 2018, 09:29 PM

Glad you liked it.

That stanza is the Bridge, which has a bit of a different cadence in the Lyric and a different Melody from the Verse, a little variation in use of the Chords, by design. I didn’t label the Verse and Bridge, or Introductory Movement or Coda. I laid it out to show where the Chords change.

The Bridge serves the function of breaking the repetition.

A third repeat of the Verse cadence/Melody/Chord Progression, going directly to the third Verse, to my ear, risks losing my attention, letting me come ‘unhooked’ and drifting off to other thoughts, rather than continuing to pay attention. The idea of the Singer-Character driving to Reno without the Love-Interest Character is new information in the storyline, pivotal in the timeline of the story. The break enables that third repeat of Verse cadence/Melody and the ear seems to welcome back the familiarity.

I felt the Reno trip showed the passage of time. The Singer-Character stayed out or up with the Love-Interest Character until three o’clock in the morning, knowing he had to leave Mendocino and drive to Reno that day. In the final Verse he has come back from Reno, but it’s late, “too late to call”, again, showing the passage of time, but enabling him to continue expressing his feelings for her. What we all want is someone to remove all doubt that our attentions are welcome, and equal to theirs, so we can give in to stronger emotion. But that’s hard to do in a Song without being repetitious.

The ‘coolness’ of her kiss? Cool that she did it, the way she did it, a kiss on the cheek, perhaps with an affectionate physical hug, letting him know she enjoyed the evening too, but it was too early in their ‘relationship’ for a kiss on the mouth? Or the cool breeze on the beach, cool lips, 3 a.m.? I need a woman bad. Or a bad woman. I’m flexible like that. What were we talking about? Oh yeah! “Last Night In Mendocino”.

I composed the Lyric in a short time in response to a friend on Facebutt posting pics of a recent trip to Mendocino. I didn’t have a Melody, just patterning and Rhyme-Scheming. It employs a Refrain-Type Chorus, the last line of each Verse being the Chorus. It is short. I put a Melody to it, with those Chords, and enjoyed it, so I thought I’d post it.

There will always be another song to be written. Someone will write it. Why not you? http://www.garyeandrews.com

 
     
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Gary E. Andrews Joined Apr 12, 2005
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Jun 13, 2018, 09:42 PM

Well, it’s an awesome song Gary

https://soundcloud.com/jennystokes-nz
http://www.evansandstokes.com

“One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain”
- Bob Marley

 
     
Jenny Stokes Joined Sep 24, 2015
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Jun 14, 2018, 12:07 AM

Hello Gary,

Good to see you, been a while.  Hey this is a great song, I sat down with the guitar and played your progression and spoke the lyrics.  At first I got tripped up on the bridge until I changed the cadence, it really works well.  Thanks so much for sharing, Kudos.  Good luck and best wishes,

Speak soon

Music is an international language, say it with a song.

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Deacon Joined Aug 30, 2009
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Jun 14, 2018, 05:29 AM

Yes, I just strummed through it again myself and it works in a fairly entertaining way. This isn’t my usual methodology for Songwriting, composing a Lyric, THEN finding Chords and a Melody. Both came rather quickly. It’s more ‘manufactured’ than ‘inspired’. But I’m fairly entertained playing it and singing through the story. Every Song is a learning experience.

There will always be another song to be written. Someone will write it. Why not you? http://www.garyeandrews.com

 
     
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Gary E. Andrews Joined Apr 12, 2005
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Jun 14, 2018, 05:39 PM

Just for the fun of it, I sang the 1rst verse of Mendocino in 3 different ways:
Straight 4/4, waltz 6/8 and 4/4 with rythm.

To listen: my voice + ukulele
https://app.box.com/file/298381093944

verse 1 (key of C: I=C, 2m=Dm, V7=G7, 6m=Am)

(I)I just want to/(2m)thank you, for your /(V7)time last night with /(I) me /
(I)Dinner at the /(2m)restaurant, our /(V7)walk along the /(I)beach /
(2m)Thank you for the /(V7)simple tune, you /(I) sang beneath the /(6m)crescent moon, /
(2m)Last night (V7)in Mendo-/(I)cino /(2m) (V7) / (I) /

Have fun!

 
     
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Guy E. Trépanier Joined Dec 05, 2005
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Jun 14, 2018, 05:48 PM

Nice simple, poetic lyric. I agree with Jenny about the Reno line. To me, “two hours out of Reno” or “forty miles to Reno” or something along those lines, just has a better feel. It’s more what would be going through his head “I’ve got two hours to go” or before his eyes, a sign saying “Reno 40 miles.” He wouldn’t say to himself “I’m on my way to Reno.” Small thing, and just my opinion.

Does your Facebook friend know the beautiful Kate and Anna McGarrigle song, “Talk to Me of Mendocino.” That would have been playing in my car on the way there and back - since your song isn’t available, of course :). I think Linda Ronstadt covered it too.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-Cudn4goNo

 
     
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Gavin Sinclair Joined Dec 02, 2014
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Jun 15, 2018, 08:38 AM

Gavin, Thanks for looking in.

I don’t see the improvement of the ‘distance’ to Reno change.

He’s still conversing with her, telling her he misses her, not talking to himself. “i miss the coolness of YOUR kiss’.

Using ‘my’, ‘my way to Reno’, keeps the Singer-Character in the action, in the story, the Singer-Character focused on the Love-Interest Character.

I just needed a Rhyme for ‘Mendocino’. I think I get away with not having a Rhyme for it in the Verses. But in the brevity of the Bridge I felt I needed a Rhyme. Running through the alphabet I rejected ‘Bean-o’, ‘Driving through the desert now, Oh! Thank God for Bean-o!’ I didn’t see anything in ‘casino’ although there would be one in Reno, but then I would not have mentioned Reno, so relevance would be lost. ‘Deano’, Dean Martin, dated reference. Gino. Jeanos. Keeno, take focus off her to gambling? Nino? Pee? No? Reno! See no…? Vino? Weeno? Don’t go there. Xenon? ‘Driving through the desert now…’ contrasted the ‘Last Night’ nighttime, darkness, coolness with the heat of the ‘desert’ and ‘now’ showed the passage of time, ‘on MY way’ showed he was alone, and Reno Rhymed!

I just can’t see the ‘distance’ idea or imagery as superior. In fact it seems more abstract.

This is a Bridge so it is intended to have a variant Melody and/or cadence from that of the Verse, to serve the function of breaking the repetition of the Verse cadence and Melody. And it is kept brief so as not to go too far afield, Lyrically and Melodically, since the objective is to get back to the third Verse and have the ear glad to hear the familiar structure and Melody ‘learned’ in the 1st and 2nd Verses.

There will always be another song to be written. Someone will write it. Why not you? http://www.garyeandrews.com

 
     
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Gary E. Andrews Joined Apr 12, 2005
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Jun 15, 2018, 08:40 AM

Thanks for the treatments Guy! Merci!

I’m using 4/4 time, the lines commencing on the 1.

There will always be another song to be written. Someone will write it. Why not you? http://www.garyeandrews.com

 
     
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Gary E. Andrews Joined Apr 12, 2005
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Jun 17, 2018, 06:48 AM

Well, wow, that’s a good one. I love lyrics like this.

They look and read simple, but there is something really deep in it. A “magic lyric”  for me is, when I read it, a melody jumps into my head and I sing to it and I cannot stop to tap my toe to the beat in my head ...

Great!

...every once in a while, I get in the mood or so…and start to play..

http://www.songcycle.org

 
     
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Martin G Joined May 27, 2009
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Jun 17, 2018, 09:24 AM

Hi Gary,

Haven’t read your lyrics in a while,
To me, these’re tender, rhythmic, simple and deep lines in the same time.

I had a question about using the word ” coolness” in this line:
“I miss the coolness of your kiss last night in Mendocino”
and not ” warmth ” but you already answered that when you replied to Jenny’s post .

good song, Gary

Nelly Tharwat
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Nelly Tharwat Joined Sep 24, 2012
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Jun 17, 2018, 10:05 AM

Danke Martin! I ‘composed’ this Lyric, ‘manufacturing’ it on a Facebook post, in response to the title as a caption on a friend’s photograph. It just sounded so musical.

I usually compose, editing the Lyrical lines as I write, with guitar in hand, and working out the Melody execution at the same time, so this was an unusual method for me.

It was fun. It isn’t likely to be the latest, greatest #1 hit on the charts, but it works.

Now I’m tinkering with this Chord XOO211 to replace the Dm, everywhere, or just in the Verses, or just in the Bridge. Tinkering, so I have not decided yet.

Strumming through it just now I also experimented with repeating, “Last Night…Last Night…Last Night, In Mendocino”, either in the Bridge or (maybe ‘and’) in the Coda.

Songs that come this quickly are still malleable, still capable of being ‘crafted’ beyond the original ‘inspiration’ or ‘manufacture’.

I’m glad you liked it anyway!

There will always be another song to be written. Someone will write it. Why not you? http://www.garyeandrews.com

 
     
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Gary E. Andrews Joined Apr 12, 2005
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Jun 17, 2018, 10:19 AM

Thank you Nelly!

Yes, that ‘coolness’ adjective was probably more about just sustaining the Rhythm of the line than actually describing something significant. But it appealed to me, after I sang it ad lib, some image and conception of kissing lips that were cool to the touch.

After Jenny questioned it I also imagined a justification as I described to her that the ‘cool’ was a compliment to the Love-Interest Character’s decision to show her affection without being ‘aggressive’ with a mouth kiss, opting for one on the cheek, as mentioned in another line in the 2nd Verse. That too worked to make it coherent in the storyline.

This shows how you can ‘craft’ a Lyric you write from original inspiration. Other words could substitute for ‘coolness’; warmness, delight, feeling, fullness, etcetera. ‘coolness’ has that c sound that matches the k sound of ‘kiss’ so that alliteration works in the Rhythm too. ‘I miss the memory (mem’ry) of your kiss’ could work, shifting the alliteration to ‘miss’ and ‘mem’ry’.

Songwriting is part ‘inspiration’, art, spontaneous ‘speaking’ or singing words without a plan or much pre-analysis, and part ‘craft’, doing that analysis afterward, modifying how the Rhythm and Rhyme go, and just what ideas and images are in the lines.

The Melody too can be modified, changing pitches of notes, changing duration of notes, to ‘craft’ a more satisfying, more singable, more listenable, more learnable tune.

I think that’s why we call it ‘playing’ music. It is like play in every sense, whether manipulating mudpies or baseballs, etc.

So thank you Nelly. I’m glad you liked it.

There will always be another song to be written. Someone will write it. Why not you? http://www.garyeandrews.com

 
     
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Gary E. Andrews Joined Apr 12, 2005
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