The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
Fri., Mar. 24. 2023 9:45am EDT
J. Jackson, lead singer and lyricist for ApologetiX here again.
Here are the stories behind the songs on our sixth single of 2023:
Hebrews 11:1 says "faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." Everyone claims they want to see evidence before they'll believe, but often after they get it, they still don't want to believe.
I got the idea for this parody and the first line of the chorus on January 2, 2023. Four days later, the chorus was done. Soon after, the first line of the first verse came to me while in the shower. I had to keep singing it until I was dried off and able to write. I got the rest of the lyrics except for the bridge on February 5, while driving to Arlington VA for my brother-in-law Bob's funeral visitation.
About 90 minutes into that trip, I was heading eastward on the Pennsylvania Turnpike and got the words "Well, I could feel wind comin' up from Galilee." Then I rounded a corner, and a bunch of windmills (an uncommon sight around here) came into view. "I guess I'm keeping that line," I said to myself.
If I had continued on the turnpike the whole way across the state, I would have come close to Philadelphia, home of The Hooters, who did the song we spoofed here. I've been a fan of them since college. In 1985, I bought the 45 of their first Hot 100 hit, "All You Zombies," with lyrics that contained a bunch of biblical allusions, including verses about Moses and Noah.
The group was named after a musical instrument called a melodica, sometimes referred to as a "hooter." I owned one as a kid and even played it occasionally (albeit poorly) in my last secular band in '87.
I REWRITE THE SONGS
I got the idea for this parody on March 9, 2023, at 2 p.m. and had a complete set of lyrics five hours later. Many of the words were written while I was out running errands. Then I shared them with my wife, Lisa, and ApX keyboardist Rich Mannion, who both felt we had something special.
Nevertheless, I revised the lyrics numerous times over the next six days, which shouldn't come as a surprise ... after all, the title is "I Rewrite the Songs."
Meanwhile, Rich immediately went to work on the music. He had finished all 43 tracks of the instrumental parts and backing vocals by March 16 — exactly one week later. I sang the lead vocals on March 17, and we released it on a single on March 20, so the song took 11 days from start to finish.
The title was the first part that came to me, as I noticed that when you sing "I rewrite the songs" it sounds almost like "I write the songs," because of the rapid-fire double "r" sound at the beginning of the word "rewrite." Then I got the opening two lines about feeling like I'd been in line forever. They seemed funny, heartfelt, and easy for others to identify with, but how could I work them in?
Then I thought about the fact that I spend a lot of time rewriting songs while I'm in line, because it helps me amuse myself while still being productive. In fact, one of my last errands that afternoon was to pick up food for my daughter Natalie at a nearby McDonald's, which often has some of the worst lines I've ever endured while waiting for so-called "fast" food.