No Straight Lines

from No Straight Lines by Bill Gable

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  • Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    The "No Straight Lines" CD, which includes an attached 8-page booklet with song lyrics and images. Cover photo by renowned photographer Guy Webster.

    Includes unlimited streaming of No Straight Lines via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
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about

This song was initially inspired by the Beatles’ “Revolver” album. I know that to be a fact, but I can’t articulate quite how! I began writing the song years ago. I recall working on it while I was at the Fes Festival of Sacred Music in 2004, it goes that far back. Like on “I Threw Your Heart,” the song includes a tricky rhythmic passage, where I am playing guitar in such a loose manner it’s hard to locate the downbeat, in this particular case partly to convey the lyric. Time will tell if it’s worth doing this stuff again, especially when it throws the players!

I love Chris Bleth’s zurna solo on this, as I suspect many people will. I used zurna years ago (i.e., also called “alghaita”) on ‘”Center Of My Universe” off of my This Perfect Day album, and I decided pretty early on this was the sound I wanted again for this song. I spent a couple of years poking around LA trying to find the impossible – a zurna player capable of playing over changes like this. I think Rich Breen may have recommended I try Chris, an extremely busy session player around town who is known for being able to play just about any woodwind in existence.

Right around that same time I was complaining to Lyle Mays about all the problems I was having and he gave me a good piece of advice, saying “stop killing yourself...every time I find myself in that position I hire a great jazz player and I’m way better off.” I’m so glad I took that advice, because when Chris showed up for the session, not only was his musical vocabulary way broader, he also actually had a keyed zurna he had bought in Spain a few years earlier, which made it as flexible as a soprano sax.

lyrics

today arrived just like any other day
utterly remarkable in every way
I wiped my eyes and beheld the sky above me
stars arrayed in a million designs
there were signs
that led me here
and lead to where I’m going
but there are
no straight lines

I used to be so sure of what it was I wanted
but I regained my senses eventually
I realized I’ll be on the very verge of beginning
every second the rest of my life
there were times
I’d have given anything
for any simple answer
but there are
no straight lines

today arrived and took me totally by surprise
with yesterday by no means over in my mind
I closed my eyes and imagined a field of clover
a shady riverbank where I could lie
the world is mine
to wander through
and to be discovered
where there are
no straight lines

credits

from No Straight Lines, released April 14, 2015
Bill Gable – Vocals, guitar, fretless guitar, guitarra, piano, percussion
Steve Rodby – Acoustic bass
Chris Bleth – Zurna solo
Judd Miller – Trumpet, zurna
Maggie Parkins – Cello
Larry Goldings – Piano
Greg Ellis – Shakers, kharkharba, frame drum, chan chan

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about

Bill Gable Los Angeles, California

BILL GABLE is an uncompromisingly original American singer-songwriter, producer, arranger and multi-instrumentalist whose music spans the boundaries between pop, jazz and world music.

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