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The second-to-last entry in Timmy Sean’s yearlong Songs of the Week project is a bittersweet Christmas number that ranks among the series’ very best.
“It Doesn’t Feel Like Christmas” tugs at the heartstrings as it tells the story of love that’s missing, which casts a pall over a person’s holiday celebration. Gorgeous vocal harmonies and a rubbery acoustic guitar line around 2:40 make this song sing. It’s quite a beautiful specimen.
Timmy says: “All the way back in the mid 00’s, my old bandmate in LUZER, Chris Volk, had a demo of a song that he was calling ‘Ooh La La.’ I tried to get him to bring it into the band, but I couldn’t convince him. So instead, I just stole the intro of his song and put it onto a Christmas original song I was working on. That song was called ‘It Doesn’t Feel Like Christmas’ and was originally released on the LUZER Yule Rock EP. I was never happy with my vocal performance on that version, though. I was fighting a cold, but we had a deadline to get the recording done in time for a holiday show we had planned.
“So in 2012, I re-recorded the song to release as a Timmy Sean single. As it turns out, history has repeated itself a bit. I had planned a completely different Christmas song to release this week, but again, the winter cold strikes again and I’m without much of a voice. The situation got me thinking back to those Yule Rock sessions, and reminded me that I always thought the song would work well ‘unplugged.’ So I laid some new acoustic guitars and keys in, remixed it from the ground up, and here is a brand new stripped down mix of ‘It Doesn’t Feel Like Christmas,’ written by yours truly and Mr. Chris Volk.” Beautiful.
You can add the acoustic version of “It Doesn’t Feel Like Christmas” to your Songs of the Week collection by clicking here. To get all of Timmy’s music, click here.
With only two weeks left to go in Timmy Sean’s yearlong Songs of the Week project, we look back at the last four songs and, well, there’s at least a couple of tears in each of our eyes because we’d really like it if this would just go on and on. Yeah, that’s probably not going to happen, but wouldn’t it be nice?
Week 47’s Song of the Week is a powerful, live version of Sir Video’s “Bottle of Wine,” recorded at the band’s first live show this past October 21st. This incredible take features the off-the-charts drumming of Punky Balfour, who wins the award, hands down. This song was followed by Week’s 48’s tender power ballad, “Your Sorry,” which Timmy points out is not “You’re Sorry”: “…yes, the ‘Your’ is not a mistake.”
For Week 49, Timmy handled all of the instruments for a percussively poppy version of Brian Wilson’s “Merry Christmas, Baby” that sounds as if it were inspired by both Slade and Status Quo. Timmy says: “Not to be confused with the other ‘Merry Christmas Baby’ covered by Chuck Berry, Otis Redding, B.B. King, Elvis Presley, Bruce Springsteen…and on and on…THIS is the version written by Mr. Brian Wilson as featured on the 1964 classic Beach Boys Christmas album.
“I did a version of ‘Little Saint Nick’ with LUZER on our Yule Rock EP. At the time, it was a close call between covering that song or this one. ‘Little Saint Nick’ won out, and I’ve been itching to lay down an arrangement of this ever since.”
Week 50’s spirited, reverent cover of John Lennon’s “Instant Karma,” is a live version recorded at New York City’s Bitter End on Lennon’s birthday last year. Timmy says: “To mark the tragic anniversary of losing John 35 years ago, I decided to release this Song of the Week a couple days early.
“We recorded this at the legendary NYC club The Bitter End when Timmy Sean and the Celebrities played there last year on John Lennon’s birthday. I jumped back to the drums for this one and we brought up special guests Brian Mahoney and Jay Swanson from the Mahoney Brothers.” Brian Mahoney takes the lead vocal on this iconic song.
There are but two Songs of the Week left for Timmy Sean to share with the world. Stay tuned!
You can add Sir Video’s live version of “Bottle of Wine” to your Songs of the Week collection by clicking here. “Your Sorry” can be yours by clicking here. To get “Merry Christmas, Baby,” click here; for the live version of “Instant Karma,” click here. To get all of Timmy’s music, click here.
For the 46th entry in his ongoing Songs of the Week project, Timmy Sean has stuffed Jellyfish’s classic “Bye, Bye, Bye” into an amped-up blender, set the dial to mondo puree, and lined his studio walls with protective sheets to catch his crazy clown-car-of-a-cover before it makes its way out into the world.
For one thing, Timmy’s version of “Bye, Bye, Bye,” originally recorded under the name the Celebrities in 2007 for a Jellyfish tribute on Burning Sky Records, is about 30 seconds shorter than the original version. What’s more, the circus-y vibe of the original track is played up in this version, and a bit of Rudy Vallee-esque whimsy is now present. And, as you may (or may not) expect, there’s more than a smattering of Brian May guitar oomph running throughout the proceedings.
Yeah, this is a wild track. Timmy says: “When we disbanded LUZER in 2007, several years before I formed Timmy Sean and the Celebrities, 3/4 of LUZER briefly formed a new band under the name the Celebrities. During that period, we got asked to record a song for a Jellyfish tribute album named Sensory Lullabies. Jellyfish hit a little before my time, so I really only discovered them from people (OFTEN) telling us that we sounded like them. By the time we were asked to jump on the tribute album though, I had been made a fan, and immediately snatched up ‘Bye, Bye, Bye.’
“Though it was released on Burning Sky Records back at the end of the last decade, I realised I never released this on my own, and decided to do some remixing now that I know a hair more about recording than I did then. So enough of my yackin’–originally from the 1993 Jellyfish album SpiltMilk, here is the brand new remixed version of ‘Bye, Bye, Bye’ by the 2007 edition of the Celebrities…featuring yours truly on all the instruments and vocals.”
You can add Timmy Sean’s wild version of Jellyfish’s “Bye, Bye, Bye” to your Songs of the Week collection by clicking here. To get all of Timmy’s music, click here.
As Timmy Sean’s explosive Songs of the Week project heads into its sunset days, we welcome this week’s entry, a powerful (what else?) cover of Huey Lewis and the News’ “The Power of Love,” delivered on stage by Timmy’s side band, Sir Video.
Recorded on October 21, 2015 (Back to the Future Day!) at the Swing House in Los Angeles, “The Power of Love” is driven by a great horn chart, delivered with gusto by Jon Manness (on trumpet) and the Mahoney Brothers’ Brian Mahoney on saxophone. There were, in fact, nine musicians playing their hearts out during this live debut of Sir Video–let’s give them a spirited round of applause: Frankie Pedano (keyboards/vocals), Alex Schneiderman (guitar/vocals), Ramage Jacobs (guitar), Jon Reshard (bass), Punky Balfour (drums), Art Webb (keyboards), and the aforementioned Jon Manness on trumpet and Brian Mahoney on the sax. Oh, and there’s one more player… let’s see… right: Timmy Sean on vocals and guitar!
There’s more to come in Timmy Sean’s Songs of the Week project; stay tuned right here for your weekly report on the latest tunes coming your way. To add “The Power of Love” to your collection, click here. To add any of the other Songs of the Week that you may have missed, click here.
It’s hard to believe, believe it or not, that as of right now, Timmy Sean is 44 weeks into his immensely satisfying Songs of the Week project, which has brought fans new songs, demos, live tracks, previews of Timmy’s new band, Sir Video, and much more. This leaves only eight more songs to serve up to fans before the next musical challenges thrust Timmy into high gear for the melodic treats he’ll unveil in 2016.
Owing to continuing medical issues, we’ve been silent on the Timmy Sean front of late, which is not to say we haven’t been listening to the new entries in the Songs of the Week project. We have. Now, though, it’s time to report on them and get up to date.
Week 39’s Song of the Week is a rarity in the ongoing canon–it was written by Fred Maurer, a friend of Timmy’s buddy Joe Bucaro. Of “Bring Your Love,” Timmy says “I originally was going to cover it with a bit of [a] ‘That Thing You Do’ feel, but after Joe suggested giving it a bit of a ‘If Your Mother Has Her Way’ vibe from my Noisewater album, it became more of a mashup of Ben Folds and McCartney…funny how those two seem to always rear their whimsical heads into my songwriting.” This is one of our favorite Songs of the Week–certainly a McCartney/Folds mashup, heavy on the whimsy and adorned with a lovely Brian May-style guitar solo and a big showbiz ending, topped with a decidedly Beatle-esque treat. And all of this comes at you in 2:15. Amazing.
For week 40, Timmy revived a song that originally came to light during the LUZER era. Timmy says: “We originally tracked this song for the Reset album, though when I realized my pronunciation of ‘Aishiteru’ (Japanese for love) was wrong, I abandoned the song.” Timmy adds that the song came up the next year, but he “decided to rework the melody and completely start from scratch on the lyrics. It became the song ‘Give Me a Sign,’ included on the Come On Mandy EP.” It’s a catchy, breezy number, with prominent electric piano and Timmy’s relatively soft vocal.
The first single from the new Sir Video EP, also the title track, “Young as the Night,” was the star attraction song for week 41. A funky dance number, driven by an electronic presence, a propulsive percussion track and an assured Michael Jackon Thriller-era influence–not to mention a catchy chorus, “Young as the Night” is a bit of a different specimen than we’re used to from Timmy, but no less huggable. This is another side of a great artist that is a big part of the Pure Pop Radio playlist.
Week 42’s Song of the Week was featured in a full band version back on July 23; this time around, “This Magic,” a Sir Video number, is presented in an acoustic take, which puts added emphasis on the lovely melody and Timmy’s strong vocal. “This is one of the first songs that I wrote for the Sir Video project right after LUZER split in 2007,” Timmy says. “Though I love the full studio version, I do really like pulling away all of the frills on this one as I feel it really stands nicely on [its] own with just acoustic guitar and vocals.” We heartily agree.
A Sir Video preview was the function of week 43’s Song of the Week. “Bottle of Wine” is from the Young as the Night EP. Another dance number with a punctuated, soulful rhythm guitar part, this song sounds like a second or third cousin to one of ELO’s more upbeat tunes. Of course, melody is king, but bring your dancing shoes! The latest Song of the Week is another Sir Video number from the EP; “Take It Off” is a rock and roll rumble of a tune, with another great melody and catchy chorus.
That brings us up to date, and we aim to keep it that way from here on out. To add to your collection any of the songs talked about on this page, or any of the Songs of the Week that you may have missed, click here. This year’s Timmy Sean library will be amongst your most treasured music purchases in 2015.
As Timmy Sean mentions in his notes for this week’s entry in his ongoing Songs of the Week project, his first offering after “a month of Beatles covers, a live track, and an acoustic version of a Sir Video [song]” is “a brand new original…well, brand new for anyone outside of the members of my old band LUZER.”
Timmy says: “We workshopped this tune a little bit back in 2006 under the name ‘Too Late,’ and even attempted to record it, but I was never really happy with how the final product was turning out. I always loved the chords and the chorus, but felt like the lyrics and arrangement needed a complete overhaul. So this week, I did just that. I built it from the ground up using all new lyrics and a new verse melody, and I’m finally really happy with it.
“Fighting a bit of a cold this week, I was worried my voice would be a bit too torn up to sing, but I was determined to get this one done in time for Thursday. In fact, in the end, I think the hoarseness gave me just a hint of that great Don Henley raspiness, which actually fit the vibe of this tune pretty well.
“Here is the song once known as ‘Too Late’ (not to be confused with an upcoming Song of the Week by essentially the same name), but now and forever known as ‘Been So Down.'”
“Been So Down” is one of our favorite Songs of the Week thus far–a seventies-styled pop-rocker with an entrancing melody, the great chord structure Timmy makes note of, and a typically strong vocal, despite the artist’s cold. Plus, there’s a pair of contrasting mood guitar solos that take the song to another level entirely. It’s another top-notch tune that makes us smile and thank our good fortune for being a witness to such great music.
You can add Timmy Sean’s “Been So Down” to your Songs of the Week collection by clicking here. To get all of Timmy’s music, click here.
If you’ve been following along with us this year and digging Timmy Sean’s Songs of the Week project, you’re well aware of Sir Video, the artist’s side band that’s about to make a big splash in the pop waters.
This week’s Song of the Week is a solo, acoustic version of a number that appeared on the 2014 EP from Sir Video, Light Years. It’s light and breezy and it’s another hit for listeners who crave Timmy’s sound. Close your eyes, picture an island setting with the wind blowing calmly and the sound of serene waters surrounding you, and you’ve got the idea. As usual, there’s a lot of activity going on, surrounding the music. Here’s Timmy to bring you up to date:
“After years in the works, today I am announcing the debut show from my new band Sir Video. Since the project has a bit of a ‘retro-futuristic’ vibe to it, what better day to launch it than the DISTANT DAY IN THE FUTURE that Marty McFly travels to in Back to the Future: Part II…October 21, 2015.
“We are renting out the premier Stage 1 at Swing House Studios in Los Angeles to throw a Back to the Future-themed party, which will also serve as a release show for our new digital EP, Young as the Night, which, combined with the tracks from last year’s Light Years EP, will be available as a limited edition CD as EP I / EP II.
“Which brings me to this week’s song. To celebrate the launch of the new project, I will be featuring a few Sir Video related tunes leading up to the show and EP release. The first of these is a ‘Timmy Sean’ solo acoustic version of a song first featured on 2014’s Light Years EP, entitled ‘Take My Breath Away.’ If you are a subscriber you will receive this as part of your subscription, but for this week only, I am also offering this track completely for FREE to anyone. So feel free to share it on Facebook or Twitter, and for those of you in Los Angeles, RSVP to BTTFparty@gmail.com for free admission (and free beer!) to our debut show on 10/21/15!”
Timmy Sean’s acoustic version of the Sir Video tune “Take My Breath Away” is a free download; click here to add it to your collection. To get all of Timmy’s music, click here.
Timmy Sean’s Songs of the Week project rolls into week 36 with a pounding live take of a song from his 2013 East Coast Girls EP.
“You’re Still on My Mind,” recorded at the Fire in Philadelphia last October 10th, is a shining example of how the excitement of a live performance elevates the emotions of a crowd invested in the music that surrounds them. Timmy and his Celebrities–Frankie Pedano (keys/vocals), Michael Vivas (bass/vocals), Michael J. Roxx (lead guitar), and John Tiedemann (drums)–kick up a storm on this classic pop-rocker.
Timmy says: “I’ve been spending a ton of time working on all the details for my new band Sir Video’s debut show in Los Angeles on 10/21 for the last month, so I decided to share a live track this week that originally appeared on my East Coast Girls EP. I also figured it tied in nicely since I have some very exciting news to announce in the next week or so about the Songs of the Week project, the East Coast Girls EP, and all of the covers that I’ve released as digital singles over the last couple years available in a physical CD format!”
Add Timmy Sean and the Celebrities’ “You’re Still On My Mind” to your collection by clicking here. To get all of Timmy’s music, click here.
Timmy Sean has pulled out all of the stops for the final entry in the Beatles Month portion of his ongoing, yearlong Songs of the Week project.
For his fourth take on a standout track from the richest catalog in modern music history, Timmy, playing all the instruments and singing all the vocals, has put his stamp on the medley from Abbey Road that starts with the gorgeous lullaby, “Golden Slumbers,” and concludes with the exciting finish, “The End.” Putting his heart and soul into this track, Timmy has even recreated Ringo Starr’s famous, and one and only, drum solo on record as a Beatle. And it’s all quite fab, of course!
Recorded over the past year and finished up yesterday, this is an exciting close to the Songs of the Week’s Beatles Month.
About this final Beatles Month track, Timmy says: “What better way to finish up Beatles Month than the way they finished it with the final stretch of the Abbey Road medley. I always thought side 2 of Abbey Road played like a classical piece, and I really think hundreds of years from now it’ll still be looked at that way. So I decided to treat it like that and (other than a few liberties putting orchestral parts on guitars), play the music pretty much exactly as it was written.”
Timmy’s exciting version of “Golden Slumbers – Carry that Weight – The End” is now playing in rotation on Pure Pop Radio, along with every one of the Songs of the Week released since the project began. Add the “Golden Slumbers – Carry that Weight – The End” medley to your collection by clicking here. To get all of Timmy’s music, click here.
Timmy Sean rolls on with this month’s special selection of Beatles covers with his version of John Lennon’s “Julia,” originally released on The Beatles, more commonly known as the White Album.
The song gets somewhat turned on its head in Timmy’s reimagining of the song, now presented with a beat and vocals alternating between immediate and ghostly, all the while reveling in the beautiful melody that continues to float as the most gentle creation imaginable. It’s a terrific performance.
Of this third Beatles cover in his Songs of the Week project, Timmy says: “Choosing a favorite Beatles song (or even several favorites) is quite a hard task. Gun to my head though, I’d have to say this one is at least in my top 3 or 4. The original version of ‘Julia’ is such a beautifully delicate arrangement, I knew I wanted my take on it to have a little bit more going on musically to steer clear of trying to compete with John’s unbelievable vocal performance singing with such emotion about his late mother. I also didn’t want to go completely in the other direction and make it TOO large. Hopefully, I got that balance right.
“Beatles Month finishes up next week already, and then back to the originals on 9/3! Wow..this year is FLYING by (and by the way, that’s not a subtle hint that ‘Flying’ is the final Beatles Month song…I promise that it isn’t…even though a minute and a half song with no lyrics would make my workload for next week pretty light). Hope you’re enjoying Beatles Month as much as I am. There’s so many good Beatles tunes. I could do a full year of just Beatles covers and not get bored!
“Also, I have a really exciting announcement to make soon about the Songs of the Week project for those of you that don’t do digital downloads and like to have your music on CDs (though, if you fall in that category, you’re probably not on Bandcamp reading this). See you next week for the big 3-5!”
Timmy’s version of “Julia” is now playing in rotation on Pure Pop Radio, along with every one of the Songs of the Week released since the project began. Add Timmy Sean’s reimagining of “Julia” to your collection by clicking here. To get all of Timmy’s music, click here.