Thursday, December 13, 2007

What’s In A Name?

So…as we get closer to finishing the album I’ve reached the point of having to name this fucker. The first LAF album was self titled. The first time I’ve ever coped out and didn’t give an album a proper title. Looking back on it, it was pretty lame as the only bands that should be allowed to “self title” an album are the big guns: Led Zeppelin, KISS, David Bowie, Cheap Trick… get the idea. In the Lenola days I would have the album title before the first note of music was ever committed to tape. I liked it that way. It felt like you were working on “something”……it had a name, an identity. But all of those album titles were either inside jokes that sounded cool or actual quotes from a drunken conversations I had that just struck me in the moment and made me think “that would make a great album title”. Well, I had one of those moments a few months back and I though I had the title for this record. I was at a BBQ at my buddy Brian’s house sitting in his backyard with a hand full of friends from my hometown, just talking about the old days, childhood shit when I remembered this old ghost story album that was passed around amongst all of us way back as youngin’s. Side two had this one ghost story about a lady that somehow ended up with an actual golden arm (a farming accident? I can’t remember), anyway the lady with the golden arm passed, but she made it clear she wanted to be buried with the golden arm before hand. The long and short of the story is that some guy dug her up and stole the golden arm and hid it under his bed. The first night he started to hear some faint moans and creepy sounds as he laid in bed until a few nights later when he was awoke to find the corpse of the golden arm lady standing at the foot of his bed screaming “where’s my golden arm, you have my golden arm!” over and over again in the most insane scary voice along with a ton of the most creepy sound effects ever. I used to play this record on my little record player night after night just to scare the shit out of myself every time listened to it. I loved that story and had totally forgotten about it until it came up over beers with my old friends and it hit me….that’s the title “The Golden Arm!”

A cool title that reminds me of old friends and good times……

Here is where this whole “Golden Arm” title gets weird.
My older brother Chris has been the artist behind all the cover art for every album, 7 inch & ep I’ve ever released dating back to the late ‘80s. With every project I start his first question is “what the title?” so he can get some grasp on the artwork. A few months ago he asked the same question and I replied “The Golden Arm” and explained the story behind it. He’s few years older and didn’t quite remember the ghost story album, but then informed me that there is and old movie starring Frank Sinatra about a jazz musician that was addicted to heroin called “The Man With The Golden Arm”. I had never heard of the movie.

Now here’s where things get a bit heavy and where I decided I can’t use the name. I’ve lost a few of my oldest/best friends to that fucking drug.

To be honest a few of the songs on this album were written around the feeling of losing some of my best friends to such a terrible drug, so the title I originally chose does have a double meaning: good memories vs. the ultimate evil.

I still like the title “The Golden Arm”, but it’s just the fact that that title would instantly conjure up the thoughts of addiction to some folks that don’t know me or the back story of the of that ghost story and the friends that I have lost.

Back to the drawing board….


Enjoy another short "lo-fi" vid of LAF in the studio.

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