I’ve Always Got Something to Say [version 1.0]

Ask me about the weather,
Ask me how I do feng shui,
Ask me if I would wear leather,
Or to whom I pray?
Ask me any question, any  day,
Ask me cause you know I’ve always,
Got something to say!

Ask me what I think of friendship,
Ask me how I feel about love,
Ask me my views on money,
Or on happiness?
Ask me any question, any day,
Ask me cause you know I’ve always,
Got something to say!

Ask me about blogging, clear cut logging,
Autobahns and black swans,
Michael Jordan, Bob Dylan,
Islam, Viet Nam, H-bombs and my Mom,
Yeah, ask me any question, any day,
Ask me cause you know I’ve always,
Got something to say!

Ask me where I stand on abortion,
Ask me if I’d help someone die,
Ask me my beliefs in cloning,
Or in alien life.
Ask me any question, any day,
Ask me cause you know I’ve always,
Got something to say!

Ask me how I’d solve global warming,
Ask me how I’d get world peace,
Ask me how I’d end world hunger,
Or inequality?
Ask me any question, any day,
Ask me cause you know I’ve always,
Got something to say!

10.27.06 – 06.07.08

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Copyright by Minh Tan on listed dated of completion.

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Notes to this poem…

This is the original lyrics for a song I wrote that was based on the simple concept of how I opinionated I am, a song which has seen drastic revisions in just a month. Don’t interpret me being opinionated to mean I was loud mouthed opinionated, though, just opinionated like it says. The loud-mouthed ones really annoy me and I’m not a hypocrite since I hate them, too. I’m just opinionated on just about everything, as referenced by the request to “ask me” rather than a statement something like “let me tell you what I think about”. And if I didn’t have an opinion, usually it’s because I had already made up my mind it wasn’t worth or not relevant to have an opinion about, for whatever reason/s. Mind you, there are times when I won’t be shy to speak up if I feel impassioned enough to do so. I’m just very emotionally intelligent not to have to scream out my two cents’ worth on everything like some people I know or have known as I don’t keep them in the know for long. And I don’t take myself too seriously to value my opinion to be more than two cents’ worth to anybody else, but they are priceless to me.

Based on that simple opinionated self-description concept, the development of the song was also quite simple. It started out simply with the weather and some other trivial stuff, although trivial stuff that applied to my life, like feng shui, which I practice for my personal spaces. I threw in a hint at the end of that first verse of serious stuff, though, regarding who I prayed to (angels).

The refrain was rather catchy, in my opinion, so I didn’t mind throwing it in four times. Made for a good sing along, of sorts, but upon first performance at Sherbrooke Village on July 2nd, 2008, I thought it got kind of boring. But that was why the chorus was there four times, aside from the fact I wanted four verses to address all the important things to me that I felt I carried some interesting opinions on.

The second verse dealt with those personal satisfaction issues, like friendship, love, money and happiness. I left the lack of rhyme as a subtle symbolic opinion of what I thought of rhyme structures for songs, that if the message were song enough, you can leave it by the wayside.

Since I am not writing the same audience as Barney the Dinosaur, two verses were enough to get boring to any audience I was going to play this song to so I threw in a bridge that was quite different, littering it with various things on which I felt I had interesting opinions. This technique was similar to the third verse in the first song I wrote, The Comparison Song, where the first two verse listed individual things line by line and the bridge just blew things out of the water with a hint at anything and everything wouldn’t matter the least bit. Just three songs into my songwriting career and I’m repeating patterns already. Not surprising given my systematic favouritism identified by a strong iNtuitive trait in the Myers-Briggs test concept, but not good, either.

The bridge was a bit of a challenge to find rhymes for given the tune structure requiring many consecutive rhymes, ideally. I didn’t give up on that idea and ended up with about three times as many rhymes and topics I used. But they were all of interest to me and which I felt I had interesting opinions on, not just topics for the sake of rhymes. I particularly liked the line and rhyme regarding H-bombs and my Mom. The lead into the refrain in the bridge was also different to the lead in of the verse refrains in the lead in, just so you know I avoided the same old refrain in trying to make the song a bit more interesting.

Unfortunately, I didn’t have a lot more to make the song interesting, and didn’t want to get people out of the groove I had gotten them into before, so I went back to the verse structure. I would have kept it to one more verse but there was a few more topics I wanted to let people know I had interesting opinions on so I did just that with two more verses.

The fourth verse was all about life and death, here and elsewhere in the universe, something I think a lot of us can relate to whether or not we have any opinions on them or whether it affects any of us.

Finally, the fifth verse was about what I perceived to be the major problems today that if we could solve them, we would solve most of our problems.

Of course, after all this, the prompt would be so what did I think of all these things? Hmmm. I could write a book on all these to explain it cause I didn’t arrive at my stance on any of them easily, but I know writing short abbreviated answers of what were complex considerations leading to slightly to moderately controversial stances would only result in misunderstandings and oversimplication by people to suit what they want to say and think of me so I’ll just offer this.

Ask me a question and let’s talk to me about it!

And that’s precisely why this set of lyrics was labeled version 1.0. I may not always have an option to discuss my opinions before I act upon them, but where it affects others, I do believe in talking about things. Sitting in a corner with opinions and acting on them without discussion is how wars starts, in my opinion, and that’s exactly what I said at the Sherbrooke Village performance introduction to the song.

So while this song was a cute little self-expression and sing-along, it ultimately wasn’t me and I wasn’t happy with it, which is why it moved on to version 2.0, but not before version 1.1 that eliminated the 4th verse (the one about life) for musical flow. I only needed one more verse after the bridge to close out the song without making it drag on, and that was an easy choice to pick the verse with the major world problems to solve rather than some moral and faith issues. I’m all about the world, baby!

Please click here to see progression of this set of lyrics to version 3.14.

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