(This is our second annual “Favorite Songs”series. It’s a chance for Range Life fans, friends and family to shout-out and share some of the songs that made 2009 better, dancier, more deeply felt, more memorable and enjoyable. Songs are presented in no particular order. Submissions are welcome! Send a song link and whatever you want to write to firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Today’s post is by Brendan from Fourth Of July. He always finds the songwriter’s gem.
Song: “Roll On” by Simon Joyner
Song Link: Team Love
If there was a music video for Simon Joyner’s song “Roll On”, it would go like this: Still interior shot of a front door. Piano comes in. Simon Joyner kicks in the door form the outside. He walks up grabs the cameraman by the shirt collar and yells the lyrics into the camera. “You were up to your necklace/ in drunk friends and wreckage/ when the new year/Stepped out of the past/through rose colored glass/and dropped you off here!” Meanwhile his band (drunk) is behind him banging along to the song on whatever instruments they can get their hands on.
This song has a very unique feel to it. I can’t tell if he is really pissed, really happy or really sad. But somehow I can relate to the feeling. The lyrics roll on so carelessly, yet thought-out and clever. The production is the same way. There is a chaos to it but everyone involved seems to understand the chaos (the banging piano, yelling background vocals, lead guitar).
The genius of this song is how the chorus tames the madness of the verses. “Roll on, Roll on, Roll onnnnnnnnnnnnnnoooooooooooooonnnnnnnnnnnnn” has a great calming effect. I also appreciate lyrics like: “It don’t make you feel any better/ when you’re under the weather/ and it’s hanging over you”.
- Brendan Hangauer