Songwriting Final Project: “Counterfeit”

One thing I have always refrained from doing is publishing anything of mine with lyrics or me singing. But I committed early on in this blog that I would publish everything I create, no matter how embarrassing it is for me to have it out in the open (unless it is objectively garbage and everyone knows it). So unfortunately for the part of me that would like to bury this track so no one can hear it again, Dave (my instructor) heard it and said it was a really great song, and that it would be a good selection for some kind of indie-ish film like Juno or whatever. He was actually pretty enthusiastic about it and said I should crank out more of this type of stuff because a lot of directors are all over that sort of unpolished sound. So that was relieving! I was nervous about it, especially since I wrote and recorded it all on the day it was due. Although I’m pretty sure a crazy rush is the only way I could have been convinced to hand in something with me singing my own lyrics, and since it’s good to do things that intimidate you, I guess I’m glad it all went down this way. A billion thanks to my trusty room mate, Brandon Dorsey ( for mixing the song for me as I got my paperwork together! He’s got a fantastic ear, so I sound way better than I do in real life. Woo! Also, I would have probably been tempted to try to get an extension and hand in something else, but once Brandon had put in effort as well, I couldn’t very well back out without wasting HIS time and energy, so I was extra forced to go through with it. Again, probably good for me.

With regards to content, I decided on the front end to make a whiny acoustic song, since I figured I could do it quickly. And then instead of taking more time with other instruments, I just threw in a whistling line. Tada. I’ve typically had no problems with writing lyrics for joke songs (parodies or what-have-you), but I’ve had no good results with writing serious stuff. I’ve tried writing serious lyrics before… it just never works out because I can’t take myself seriously enough to put them to music. I got around that this time by writing in a sarcastic voice and sarcastically setting the lyrics to a cheerful-sounding melody and harmonic structure (along with the being in a rush thing). It’s ABOUT something that is serious to me, but the words themselves are kind of silly. In real life I actually do make light of serious things as part of my coping process, so I decided to just do that in this song as well. Whether it worked or not, it generated a product, and that’s more than I can say for any other technique I’ve tried. I’ve also decided to record my voice more often and listen to it, because as painful as that is, it will be really good for my singing. And I DO enjoy singing, so it would be nice to also be a little bit good at it… haha.


2 thoughts on “Songwriting Final Project: “Counterfeit”

  1. 12popcans says:

    Christopher! This was delightful! At first we didn’t realize it was your voice, but then we were like, “That is his voice!”. So good : )

    • cjpulsifer says:

      Haha… thanks! Yeah, I do sound kind of weird in it, but oh well. I’m in the process of picking apart the way I sing and hopefully putting it back together again in a better way, so these days I sound different almost every time I sing.

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