Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Sisters Brothers

I listened to the new "Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors" album, Medicine today. Drew Holcomb is an American singer song-writer who just happens to be married to Ellie Holcomb (nee Elizabeth Bannister), the daughter of singer, song-writer, producer extraordinaire, Brown Bannister. I like the recording a lot and there are some really good songs on it. "American Beauty" may be my personal favourite. The album is certainly better produced than the previous album Passenger Seat; but, in my humble opinion, Passenger Seat has the better songs. "Hallelujah," on the Passenger Seat recording, is a great story of rock and roll worship bands (yes, in this case, "rock and roll" and "worship" can be put together) and asks interesting questions about the motives of contemporary worship music leaders (see it performed here).

However, the song on Medicine which caught my attention the most, caught it for all the wrong reasons. "Sisters Brothers" seems to me to be simply a mellow reworking of Serena Rider's song "Stompa." Take a listen to the two here (starts at approximately 20:35) and here. The similarity probably falls short of copyright infringement, but "Sisters Brothers" is similar enough to make one think that Drew has been listening to Serena.

If there is any redemption in all of this, it is that Drew Holcomb has improved on the meaning of Serena Rider's song. There is truth in the bridge Holcomb has written.
Life's not a joke
Not a cloud of smoke
It's not to be mocked
It's a tickin clock
Countin down the days
Livin on borrowed time
Below are the rest of the lyrics to "Sisters Brothers."
Sisters Brothers 
(Words and music by Drew Holcomb)
It happened to me on the balcony
I heard someone singing in the key of C
Goodbyes and love and freedom and tragedy
It got me singing like a carousel
I had to take a vacation to the wishing well
To pound all the drums and ring all the bells 
Sisters, brothers, fathers, and mothers
We've got to stand up for each other
Sisters, brothers, fathers, and mothers
We've got to fight for one another 
Now promises made and debts were paid
We tell ourselves we are not afraid
Fear only goes where its invited to stay
An eclectic electric hopeless romantic
Telling tall-tales to keep your interest
Trying to understand the lonely heart of man 
Sisters, brothers, fathers, and mothers
We've got to stand up for each other
Sisters, brothers, fathers, and mothers
We've got to fight for one another 
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh yeah 
Life's not a joke
Not a cloud of smoke
It's not to be mocked
It's a tickin clock
Countin down the days
Livin on borrowed time 
Sisters, brothers, fathers, and mothers
We've got to stand up for each other
Sisters, brothers, fathers, and mothers
We've got to fight for one another 
By Drew Holcomb. © Hancy
Music, 2014. BMI. Music Admin.

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