Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The First Available Downloads Coming Soon.

I have spent the greater part of most every day of this past month doing one single thing: making sheet music. Arranging my songs.

Because, very soon, these songs will be available for licensed download. Even in this day where music is passed around freely, regardless of copyright -- I found the Samuel French score for The Last Session at some online trading post -- I'm not going to let that prevent me from putting my things out there.

Last night, Jim and I were invited to a palatial private home for a beautiful meal with very classy people. They had a piano there, freshly tuned, and all the chairs from the living room circled around it for a little concert.

Since we've been friends with these people for several years, I had sung for them once before, but it was an unplanned event. (I jumped on the piano after dinner and just took it over, not giving them any choice in the matter. Jackie Gleason's widow was one of the guests, in fact).

Maybe it's counter-cultural to be coming into one's own at the age of 57, but I can't go backward and become a child prodigy. No, this is it. This is the age when I get a record deal.

In a way, it's better than if I'd gotten famous in my youth. Life on the road for those many years, bar after bar, hotel after hotel, casino after casino, then theater after theater, has seasoned me. Say what you will, I do know how to sell a song. I've paid for that in drugs, sweat and tears.

This piano has been played by some of the greats, from the classical world to the opera world to the theater world. These friends have entertained legends in this living room. Serious musical legends. In fact, a highly respected, award-winning Broadway producer was sitting there listening to me, with tears rolling down his face.

This little country church pianist felt right at home. Dues, man. It's about having paid dues.

I sang "Prologue from New World Waking" into "My Rising Up." Then, "Lazarus Come Out" followed by "Holy Dirt," which I describe as my anti-hymn. Then "Rescue" -- at dinner, several of the women were talking about their support for animal shelters -- ending with "How Do You Fall Back in Love" (Jim didn't sing since he's on vocal rest with his 7 show a week schedule) and, finally, "Going It Alone."

So, people have been asking what songs are coming first. Here is my list. This is what I've completed so far. I'll be adding more and more songs as the months progress. Along with the sheet music itself, I'm going to provide mp3s of all the arrangements made from the sheet music program. They will sound a bit cheesy, but will accurately play the notes so that slow readers or non-readers can learn them, too.

Eventually, I'll go into the studio and make a fully produced record. But, really, these are for you, dear reader, to sing.

We will begin with a brand new song which I co-composed with Mark Janas. I don't have a good recording of the song, yet, but we've sung it both at church at at the Salon to terrific response. In fact, people have been coming up to me asking for copies of the lyrics. Those will also be posted on the Watchfire site.

EVERY DAY A NEW AMENLyrics by Steve SchalchlinMusic by Steve Schalchlin & Mark Janas
c 2011 by See No Evil Music / Lil Shack O Tunes (ASCAP) & Mark Janas Music (BMI)

A guy meets a Catholic girl in a karaoke bar and re-discovers the power of singing “Amen.” Sounds crazy, but this touching and humorous folk-gospel story song is actually quite moving. Solo -- or solo with SATB choir. Guitar chords included. The choral arrangement is sophisticated while being totally accessible to any level of church or civic community group.

HIGH: D4 to F5 solo or with choral
LOW: B4 to D5 solo or with choral

MED: C4 to D#5 solo or with choral

Lyrics by Steve Schalchlin
Music by Steve Schalchlin & Avril Roy-Smith

c2009 See No Evil Music/Lil Shack O Tunes (ASCAP)

A mother misses her deployed soldier son and examines the items he left behind, looking for hope that he’ll return. A true story-song drawn from real life. Guitar chords included. A TTBB arrangement is available.

HIGH: F3 to E4
LOW: Bb3 to Bb4

Lyrics by Peter J. Carman
Music by Steve Schalchlin

c 2006 See No Evil Music / Lil Shack O Tunes (ASCAP)

Written from the perspective of Lazarus, raised from the dead by Jesus, this song is also a thank you to caregivers and friends who refuse to let friends in distress, whether through sickness or depression, slip away. Guitar chords included. Powerful, driving ballad.

HIGH: F#3 to F4, optional Ab4. Solo and male trio (TTB)
MED: C# to C4, optional Eb4. Solo and female trio (SSA)  
BARITONE with male chorus (TTBB)


Lyrics by Peter J. Carman
Music by Steve Schalchlin

c 2006 See No Evil Music / Lil Shack O Tunes (ASCAP)

A high energy inspiring gospel song about rebirth and renewal of spirit and faith, with harmony back-up. Guitar chords included.
HIGH: Eb3 to G#4
MED: C4 to Db5
LOW: Ab3 to D5


Lyrics by Peter J. Carman
Music by Steve Schalchlin

c 2006 See No Evil Music / Lil Shack O Tunes (ASCAP)

A deeply sincere prayer of thanksgiving, celebrating the power of music to create peace and healing. Arranged in various solo and choral configurations. Guitar chords included.


HIGH: A3 to G4
MED: F#3 to E4
LOW: E3 to D4 or E4 to D5


Lyrics by Schalchlin/Roy-Smith/Kuhns/Lebo
Music by Steve Schalchlin

c2009 by See No Evil Music/Lil Shack O Tunes (ASCAP)

Written for an animal rescue shelter, this expresses the truth that when we rescue another, we really rescue ourselves. Choral version available. The song is appropriate for all occasions. Guitar chords included.

HIGH: E4 to G5
MED: Bb3 to D4
LOW: A3 to C#4c 2011 by See No Evil Music / Lil Shack O Tunes (ASCAP) & Mark Janas Music (BMI)

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