JONES STREET STATION presents

Perennials
1 band, 1 year, 52 songs, 12 charities

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Perennials Volume 45: "The Count"

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Story Behind The Song: "The Count"

This week's dispatch comes from Danny.

Okay, I'm just gonna come out and say it. Perennial 45 is a little strange. Strange in its inception, evolution, tone, theme and tenor... I was fiddling around with this chunky, downstroke-heavy guitar bit that's a little out of my usual comfort zone. Then I started layering other things on it - mando, piano, banjo, but no lyrics. I sent it out to the guys and asked them to tell me what images it brought to mind - kind of an audio Rorschach test. Walt said it put him in the mood of Jonathan Harker, the narrator of Bram Stoker's goth classic Dracula. Paul told me it reminded him of a run he had just taken in Regent's Park in London - a city which features prominently in that same novel. I immediately started rereading the book (which I hadn't done in years) and was quickly struck by the similarities between Harker's own descent into madness as Dracula's prisoner and the mental demise of so many of Edgar Allen Poe's pitiable and disturbing first-person protagonists. In the end, I wanted the lyrics to reflect Harker's inner monologue as he vacillates between feverish anxiety and blissful resignation. Walt and Paul then put on their respective editor's caps and transformed the tune into something musically coherent, rewriting sections and inserting bass and piano elements that ratcheted up the crazy in ways I never would have dreamed of. So, the lesson here, is that 45 songs in, I still don't know exactly how a tune is gonna take shape. It's exciting. And, like our friend the Count, still pretty scary!

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Featured Video: "The Understanding"

Directed by Adam Reid - Starring Danny Pudi & Monica West

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