Hollis Webb

Where Danger Invites Rescue

Filtering by Category: Sing Along

BASS Along: Over and Over Again

Today we are doing something special with our “Sing Along” series where we discuss how the songs from RESCUE came into being.  Today we BASS ALONG!  Clint Buck, greatest man in town and bass player for The Sleuth talks about the song “Over and Over Again.”

Lubbock, 2009

Lubbock, 2009

Hollis first played Over and Over again for me back in 2009, not long after we had started playing together while in law school out in Lubbock. That night, we were playing at a house party/open mic/jam session with several of our friends, which was exactly the sort of activity we all needed to blow off steam and have some fun. I brought my sousaphone out for a couple tunes!

The bass line came together pretty quickly. While Hollis played the verse chords—well, over and over again—I played around moving up and down the neck. Eventually, this line fell into place:

*Hollis's note--  I said to Clint: "Play something like the intro to "In the Meantime" by Spacehog."

*Hollis's note--  I said to Clint: "Play something like the intro to "In the Meantime" by Spacehog."

For the chorus, I started (like I usually do when I’m learning one of Hollis’ songs) by tracking Hollis’ chords and playing the tonic generally in line with his strumming pattern. The second time through the pattern, I wanted the bass line to have more of a “wheels off” feel to intimate a grown sense of anxiety before falling back into the verse riff. After experimenting with a few different variations, this is what I settled on:


It was simple enough, but it sounded exactly how I wanted it to underneath Hollis’ guitar and singing. It’s a fun song to play, and I always think about the early days of performing with Hollis when I do.

Listen to "Over and Over Again" from RESCUE here:

Sing Along: The Label On Your Sleeve

Song: "The Label On Your Sleeve"
Tempo: 120bpm
Time: 4/4
Key: G

After I left Austin in 2006, I had a "regathering" type of moment where I hung out in my apartment in Arlington and listened to and (tried) writing and recording as much as I could.  I was working a job close by where I was making a little bit more money and after hitting up open mics in Dallas and traveling to see many of my favorite bands live, I had a good idea of where I wanted my "sound" to go and what I was capable of.

I had just heard Arcade Fire at ACL 2006 and remembered loving the kind of serious but high tension mood their droning, repetetive verse beat style.  Driving, disco "four-on-the-four" like you had a drummer stuck on the roof and told him to beat his kick and not to stop until the record is done.

This was fully fleshed out in my parents's garage on Christmas Eve of 2007.  The original title of the song was "Pennant" like the kind of university pennant you might see at a 1950's college football game.  I had the lead melody and the "theme" of the tune in my head for some time.  I could hear it like it was bells or trumpets playing-something "glorious" and heralding like a fight song at a football game.

“The Label On Your Sleeve” theme

“The Label On Your Sleeve” theme

The drums aren't real.  They are individual drum sounds from a Casio keyboard I played live into the recording to the click track.  I could never get the drums to sound quite right, but they are passable.  When I play this song live, I find myself wanting to go quite a bit faster and sing more like David Byrne.  I wanted joyous, but "high tension."

The lyrics are about getting close and physical--how sometimes the first touches are the strangest and weirdest--with another person.  It's kind of like that weird "touching" thing a teenage guy might do at the movies while he's got his arms crossed--it's that little "I want to hold your hand" motion.  I'd like to know the over-under on that weird "touching" thing those guys are doing.

This is the first of many songs I would write trying to imitate The Features.  Funny story:  I posted this on The Features Fans online community board and no one responded.  I suppose listening back it sounds a little rough, but still not bad for where I was in the process of learning to write songs and record them.

I feel the warmth inside your cashmere
I only wish I was the label on your sleeve
Maybe then I could be next to you
But instead I'll have to dream of ways to be
Close to you

So here it is in its full glory: