Words & Music

by monicadockery

Archive for the tag “songwriting”

Feature Friday: Man on the Moon (Arvid Lizell)

This is Arvid from Sweden. I do not know him……but I do know he is a beautiful soul. How do I know this you ask? Well, if you listen to 30 seconds of his music, you will hear it hidden in there. From the very beginning of listening to his “Falling through the Sky”, you get this happy, light and lifted feeling. The bouncy beat starts off with sounds that give you a feeling of being a child on the playground, maybe swinging on a swing and feeling the wind on your face. There are touches of Cold Play and Owl City in the music and in his voice, but still there is something very much his own in there. My favorite part of the song starts at about the 2.40 mark where he begins “I’m shaking, my head is aching….it’s all breaking, all the mistakes I’m making, will you catch me as I’m falling through the sky.” Such a smart and effortless flow to it, lovely.


Then, there’s “Drive On”. I could imagine myself just getting into a car, driving very slowly, at a snail’s pace. He sings, “you think you’re alone, but that’s where you are wrong” and then I can feel a little push in the song, starting to move now. Then he continues, “street lights, all blur together from the teardrops in your eyes”. I picture someone driving late at night trying to run away from something. Finally, the gear shifts into third at about 2.18 and he’s saying “drive on….travel on for what your worth.” Now, the person isn’t driving away but driving towards something….a better life maybe. What I love about this song (and all his songs, really), is his use of space. He leaves nice, quiet pockets in there where people can just feel what they are feeling and process. I like that. That is actually something I could do more of in my songs….using space wisely and not trying to fill up every bit of it.

The last songs on there are “Death is not the End” and “Little Darling” (which is the one in the video above). These, I think, express two things that have touched me personally. I have had a lot of death around me in the last two years and, at times, when death is so close it does feel like you are “scatter[ing] out your dreams like broken glass”. And then, you think, there has to be something. There just has to be. I can’t just lose this person….they can’t just be gone, they have to be continuing on in some way. Also with death, you think of life and how precious it is – how important it is to see the big picture and be thankful. So on days when I’m complaining about the small stuff and I’ve “miss[ed] the bus”, I try to remember that I’ve “never seen the dark side of the world” and that whatever small thing I’m dealing with…..it ain’t that bad in the grand scheme of things. There are people suffering, fearing for their lives every time they walk outside their door…people who don’t even have a door. So, yeah, it really isn’t all that bad even though it may feel like it is.

Thank you, Arvid. In a world of messages about “ho’s” (sp?) and “shaking your ass”, it is good to come across substance. Something you can chew on and feel good about consuming. Wish you the best…may your music feed the masses. The end.

***Please show your love, support, check out this guy’s music, follow him, comment…..check him out at www.soundcloud.com/arvidlizell

Featured Artist: Melissa Polinar

Hello!!! It’s Friday, hurray:)! I said on my last post that today I’d be featuring a new artist on here.  This time it is a beautiful, soulful woman by the name of Melissa Polinar.  I do not know too much about her on the personal level.  What I do know is that she is crazzzzy talented!  She’s been posting videos on youtube for a while now and has a pretty consistent following.  What I love about her apart from her smooth and silky voice is that she glows….literally, she GLOWS when she performs.  You can tell she is a good soul because it is written all over her face.  I am also so impressed with her skill with the guitar and the great control she has when she sings….every note is on pointe and her choice of inflection and varying dynamics is impeccable.  In short, she is awesome.  Here’s one of her original songs, a good friend of mine shared this with me and it just moved me.  Let me know if you like it too.  And, if you do, please show some love and support by leaving her a comment on youtube, liking her on facebook at http://www.facebook.com/melissapolinar, or on her own blog at http://melissapolinar.com/blog.  I predict your ears will thank me for this!


The First Time

Good day to everyone!  I am loving how gorgeous it is outside and I plan on getting out there and spending the rest of the day with my son.  Looking forward to that.  As promised, though, I am posting that song I said I would before we head out.  It’s another one on the guitar.  I’ve been doing more on the guitar lately because I’m trying to practice more and get better at it and as I do that, I end up messing around and find something I can use for a song.  This one is very simple, most of the song is two chords (like some of the others;) ), but I kind of like it that way.  It is fitting for me since I see myself as somewhat of a simple kind of girl.  In fact, I hope that as I get older, I will become even more of a simple person.  Please don’t confuse simple with simple-minded.  By simple, I mean, someone who doesn’t need much and is content in every moment.  It is one of my truest desires, to learn to live more and more simply…to love simply…  

Here’s the new song, hope you enjoy it!

Oh, and don’t forget to stop by on Friday and check out this week’s featured artist!


This is my first ever time doing a cover song on here. And who else would I choose to cover than the GREAT Ella Fitzgerald! One of my top 10 favorite songs in the world is her version of Summertime. And since it is rainy and cold out there, I thought it would be the perfect song to help me pretend like it was a warm day at the beach in June. Now, there is noooooo way in the world that I would ever compare or want to be compared to Ella and so this rendition is entirely different than her own. In addition to changing the tune, I also switched up a few lyrics here and there and added a little something different at the end. Also, I thought putting in a little hip hop-infused rhythm to it would be fun and modernize it a bit. So, it is definitely different from the original, but done with great love and respect in my heart for her. Here is my homage and my version of Summertime

Make It

Hello!!!! Hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend. I just came back from time spent with my beautiful family at the beach. Such a lovely day today, though I feel like us Californians have been quite spoiled this winter season with so many sunny days. A little rain might do us some good….hopefully, this Monday we’ll see some. Anyway, as promised — a new song. Well, actually, for me it’s quite an old song. This song was written a while back when I first started messing around with writing and recording songs. It’s been in my computer and I listened to it the other day and thought I’d dust it off and share it with you all today.

I wrote it during a phase that I like to call “my uncharacteristically optimistic phase.” I hate to admit it, but I am naturally a glass half-empty type of person. I can see the bright side and feel the sun, but it just usually takes more work for me to do so….I have to do it intentionally–it doesn’t just happen for me as it seems to do for some. Therefore, I often end up having conversations with myself where I give myself a pep talk, a perspective check if you will, in order to not go to the dark side. There was a period of time, though, when (for some reason) it seemed like it was much easier for me to see the long view and I didn’t have to work so hard at it. It was out of this part of my life where this song came from. It is basically me talking to myself and saying….”hey, the only person that can make or break it for you is you, so stop complaining and do something already.” It is called …Make It

The track is a bit different from other stuff I’ve posted, but I try to get into all styles, try on various brands ….it challenges me and …it’s just fun.

Side note: I was very sorry to hear about Whitney Houston. Before the chaos in her life stole away her gift, no one came close to her talent. I only wish she would have been able to come out of it and find her way back. But, I will remember her at her best…what a great voice!

Lilia (Flower Girl)

One of the changes I had decided to make on this blog this year was to add some videos. Although I would much rather remain in hiding, I realize that the world has become very dependent upon visual images and that hearing a song, simply by hearing it, sometimes isn’t enough. People want to look at a face, look in someone’s eyes and see…is this person for real? Is this person a good person, a genuine soul? Or is she a fraud? I have my own answers for those questions, but I am beginning to realize more and more that in this arena (the blogosphere), people want to be afforded the opportunity to make their own judgments.

All that said, I have decided to finally post a video. It is of me singing a song I wrote this past week after finding out a special lady, someone I grew up around, had passed. I am new to the guitar and I’ve been struggling trying to teach myself how to play. Despite my struggles with it, the guitar is such a great tool for me. I can use it for so many things…..to mess around, to entertain myself, to improve my memory, to grow new synapses, relieve tension, and …to express things that cannot be expressed in another way. The day after I heard of her death, I picked up the guitar and started just picking around on it and this soft, little phrase kept coming out….doo doo dai, dai, doo doo dai dai. Something about humming that over and over made me feel good….it made me think of a woman running through a field of flowers, happy, at rest. It stayed in my mind and later the next day, I wrote this song.

Here are the lyrics in case the audio is too low.

Doo doo dai, dai, doo doo dai dai…..

We all wonder why we’re here and why
We feel the pain and why we cry
So much we don’t know about
All the reasons why, oh why
We even have life

I met a flower girl once upon a time
She told me she had a reason why
She loved, and laughed and gave her life
It was LOVE, that was her why

And we may never see
What this life’s all about
But we know love’s one thing
We can’t do without
So love one another
Even when it hurts
Love one another
Listen to my words…

It’s all how we love
It’s all how we love
It’s all how we love
It’s all how we love

Doo doo dai, dai, Doo doo dai, dai….


I wrote this song this past Monday when the rain was coming down outside.  The cool, moist air tiptoed through my open window, brushed against my cheek, and gave me a gentle kiss good morning.  It was one of those days when you just want to stay in bed all bundled up –eyes closed, mind clear –and just listen to the calm, the stillness brought on by the rain.  A beautiful morning.  On days like that, inevitably, songs begin to creep up from my toes, along my body, and peaceably make their way into the corners of my mind and…I write.  As I was laying there in my bed, I remembered an image of a man who had made his home underneath an overpass.  It stuck with me and this is where, I presume, this song came from.  It is called….Pigeon

Heal Me

As promised, here is part two of the back-to-back song posting for this week. No comments from me on this one. Enjoy your weekend!

Heal Me


Up to You

Today’s song post comes to you sans any music tracks.  I thought it was best to do this one a cappella because  it is such an emotional song already…..a very raw emotion that, I think, requires a raw presentation.  It highlights the complexities involved in the relationship between parent and child.

We expect the ones who raise us to be superman, to be our heroes, to be perfect.  When we find out that they are only human, it is disappointing.  We blame them for their faults as well as ours and wonder how our perspectives on life came to be so incredibly different.  But…someone very close to me once said, “One day that person is no longer going to be here and none of that will matter.”  That was a huge moment for me.  No matter what, I would miss both my parents so much if they weren’t here and I wouldn’t remember all the arguments. Instead, I would remember all the nuances — those special moments when they were “Mommy” and “Daddy”.  In the end, they do what they can and same goes for all of us.  We do what we can, the best we know how.  We are not perfect, we are people and if you love someone, you love them for all of who they are — the good, the bad, the everything.

The song is Up to You


Well….I’m so glad to be home from vacation and over the cold!!  Good to be back in Cali…although I love visiting the South, there is nothing like home.  While I was there, though, I was able to work on a new song and it is one of my favorites right now because it’s more upbeat and playful than most of my songs.  Another reason I’m liking it so much is because it is the first song I’ve done without any pre-made tracks.  I made all the tracks from scratch by playing the digital version of each instrument (since I don’t have the actual instruments…one day).  Lots of fun messing with those:)!

As for the content…it is about two misfits who may not fit nice and neatly into the conventional mold, but they make a good fit for each other.  Sometimes, when it seems like the world doesn’t get you, it’s good to know you’ve  got that one person who does.  The song is …Circle Square.

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