Influences: Tim O’Brien, Stevie Wonder, Randy Newman, Tom Lehrer, Aretha Franklin, Lucinda Williams, Jonatha Brooke, Dar Williams, Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, Tin Pan Alley Era music, ‘70s music, Celtic, Blues, Swing Jazz, American Songbook...
Liz Brinker, from poetically-named Rockville, MD, and, originally, Oklahoma, has been musically involved since day one. Dance came first, closely followed by choirs of all manner and music theater through young adulthood. While single and lonely, she bought her first guitar at The House Of Musical Traditions in Takoma Park, MD and immediately embarked on a decades-long love affair...until she met the ukulele. “Where have you been all my life?”, she asked. The instrument answered, “My dog has fleas.” They are living happily ever after. After a 16-year stint teaching early-childhood music classes for Music Together, Liz teaches guitar, mandolin and, primarily, ukulele from home, when she is not making Acapella videos like a madwoman.
|#1||And His Name Was George||
|#2||Bolt From The Blue||
|#3||You’re Not The Bossa Me||
|#4||Smooth It Out||
|#6||My Neighbor, Conway||
|#8||Bliss, Nothing But Bliss||
|#10||The Major And The Minor||
|#11||Come On By @richaaaay||
|#12||The Twelve Bar Blues @richaaaay||
|#14||My Heart Skips A Beat||
|#15||The Lone Night Owl||
Thanks for all the great comments this year. Love your songs.
You're welcome to pick any of the songs. "Luxuries and Finery" is a fun country shuffle that I like but didn't get as many listens that you may like... Or any of the instrumentals are ambient and wacky if you are looking for something weirder.
Thank you so much for your comments, Liz!
Hey hey! Thanks for the love on "I Can't Remember Don't Ask Me About It" and "Speed Up." I'll pay you back two. Yay!
Thanks so much for listening to my stuff Liz! You're SO awesome! I didn't do any of the weekly challenges this year, not sure why, cuz you're right, they're very useful! And it's so fun to be doing challenges 'as a team' with so many other fawmers. That's why I love skirmishes. I'm also grateful to have a short time limit--cuz I can procrastinate and putz the month away without posting anything if it were up to me. Congratulations on having such an epic and fruitful FAWM!
Thank you, thank you, once again for your awesome and supportive comments, Liz! I hope to listen to the rest of your songs before this is all deleted. We live in Rossland, B.C., which is a little ski town just north of the U.S. border, two hours north of Spokane, WA. Btw, I love your bio. I chuckle every time I read "my dog has fleas." 😀
Liz, thanks for listening to Weary Traveler. The Maracas I used were hand carved gourds from the Grand Cayman Islands, a souvenir from my parents in the early 80s.
Thx for listening to my eclectic music repertoire this FAWM. I enjoyed your style of music and your many collab.. Hope to see you back next year. Stay safe fellow FAWMer .
I will listening on and off until April 14
Hmmm. Depends on your mood - I'll give you three to choose from. Why Does it Have to be That Way is pretty sad and disturbing, but powerful, I think. Emmy Lu is about my dog and couldn't be more opposite. In the middle is If I Go First, which is light and fun but still has a serious message. You pick! Actually, now that I think about it, they're all about death. Hmmmmm. Interesting.
I am SO glad we connected, Liz! I love your musicality, writing, and sense of humour! As for your questions, I have a midi keyboard attached to my Mac and am figuring out Garage Band. So any bass you're hearing is me on the keyboard with a bass effect. I do play the upright bass, but it's just so much easier to do it on the keyboard! Same with the marimba sound. The percussion isn't me - that's Garage Band loops. The guitar and banjo is me. So nice to meet you! Hopefully we'll connect for 50/90 or the next FAWM. This is my first, but I'm hooked.
Thx for listening to another one of songs " Gotta Get Better" I do appreciated it.
It was a fun song to write
I am still working on it. I take short midi loop and then modify to suit my needs...probably not the best method...but
Thanks for listening to my song 'All i know'
Thanks so much, Liz. Thanks again.
Hoping to see you July 4! 😀
I'm still catching up on sending thank you notes for your having stopped by my song "When it Snows". I am so touched by the support and comments this song has gotten. I played this at a zoom open mic even though it's not quite polished and it was well received. I will be back in touch if I get the demo up in case anyone is around to listen. Your time and support mean so much to me and I really appreciate your having taken time for me, Liz.
Liz, Look to your email re: an opportunity for you to perform.
Thanks so much for all the kind comments on my tunes - much appreciated, Liz!
Hey thanks for your comment! It was indeed a pretty great month. Intense at times!
Thank you for your comments!
LIz, thank you for your very kind words, it really means a great deal from such an accomplished musician as yourself. I'm intrigued by the physical reaction to How Much I, and that you need to regoup after Then Comes Five, I suppose is a very special compliment (?).
If you want to, if, no presure, I'll trade you 8, and let you hear some more of the Then Comes Five story from another song, actually done in the last 50/90. Up to that point, that one was my "best" for want of a better term. I know it's hard to say one "likes" a song that holds such sentiments, but if you liked FIVE, you might like to follow that thread a little further... But I know you're busy... Anyway, let me know. And thanks for repaying the visits with such honest responses. Means the world.
Thanks for the words of encouragement on "Love is the Light" We agree. It would make a good campfire round or worship component.
I did enjoy His Name is George. I'm glad there are others who celebrate family members in song besides me
3 more it is then, at your leisure!
My pleasure completely.
I love autoharp! I get a very nice bell-like sound for Bells of Norwich too. 😀 I'm glad you didn't wait for me to suggest a song for #tit4tat, and just forged forward. I actually like all of mine, even the first one, which I doubt I'll ever set to music, since I'd rather sing more hopeful things as a rule. If you stop by again, pic, whatever song you want.
Another thing I like to do with shakers is x/y mic placement with 2 pencil condenser mics and hard pan each and move the shaker rhythmically between the two polar pattern so you get a stereo shaker moving between left and right ears...as opposed to top and bottom ears I suppose lol but I was being lazy on this recording and didn’t wanna set up new mics!
It was just a Dunlop egg shaker I tracked twice to make it sound bigger and I used a condenser mic to bring it out a bit more since the the recording isn’t super busy
Thanks for the post on my wall, Liz! Some of my personal favorites from this month were probably Into Your Eyes, My Dear Heart, Sleepy Eyes, and Minute. But you could also listen to some of the less-listened-to ones, the 2nd half of the month seemed to taper off on the comments a bit... thanks for the offer to listen and comment!
CONGRATS on your FAWM win! 😀
Hi, Liz ... I'm in for tit4tat. I have been busy with a few extra things for the past few days, so I haven't had the chance to check in. Part of my ta-da list for tonight was to check in and do a bunch of listening. 😀
Start with Embrace Good Superpowers, Wish I Knew How to Break Through, and The Boy and The Sentinel. That was my last one. Feel free to give some constructive criticism too. I'm feeling good about it, but everything in FAWM is a first draft.
😀 😀 😀 Yes, that's a marimba synth sound.
Introverts unite!.... actually maybe not. We’re fine on our own. 😀 😂
I've e-mailed you the chart for "The Corner of Might and Should."
thanks! whatever grabs ya in terms of titles, i guess the ones i've marked favorites i think might be 'better' but, whatever ya want to listen to, go for it 😀
hi caught a couple of your collabs with richaaaay. really nice. congratulations on your win, i will come back for more!
Liz, thanks for taking note of my little Ukulele Etude. I would kill to have your playing chops!
You're welcome, it was my pleasure to hear, and thanks for your reply. Nice, that's why it's so up close and personal, which is what I was hinting to Rich about his own vocal stuff.
Thank you for you lovely feedback on 'Chances'. Looking forward to checking out more of your songs this week 😀
Thanks for stopping by my page and your lovely comment. So nice of you to take the time! 😀.
Thanks for listening. In finnish music slang ”legos” mean ”teeth”. But we can choose the Colosseum, because I guess it would be cheaper.
Thanks for the listen / comment on my song, "the Corner of Right and Should." I can make the tracks available if you'd like to use them for a cover.
Liz, thanks so much for those comments, you’re a star! I actually came back for another listen on Marco? - 100% one of my favourites this FAWM, beautiful song ❤️
Glad you liked "The Person You Are Now" - The song works well... But did you notice the silly message hidden in the first letters of each line (it was for the "Your Name" Challenge.
Glad you liked my "It Was A Test". I thrive on Skirmishes. The deadline seems to bring out the best in me. The adrenaline rush seems to access hidden depths of my sub-conscious that songs I write over several hours/days/weeks don't. Inspiration seems to come out of nowhere and once I commit to the idea, I just have to complete it come hell or high water. It is a throw back to my days writing songs for an improvisation based theatre company, perhaps.
Thank you for your kind comments and soundboard message. You are definitely not a slacker! You hit a homerun on your first year of FAWM! Congrats in hitting 15!
I’ve enjoyed your music all month, Liz. Hope to see you back again next year!
A am not a Lone Night Owl. However, I am an early bird.Maybe I am afraid of the darkness, still.
Congratulations to you, too. It’s been a great Fawm. I hope to hear you next year, too.
Thanks. I am honored by your comment.
love your music
Congratulations on winning FAWM, and thank you so much for listening to my songs!
Hey Liz. So that chord progression... if anyone's ignorant here it's me. I just had to look up one of the chords! It's basically...
Bb D7 Eb7 Edim7*
Bb G7 Cm7 F Bb Eb Bb
Although the way my friend taught it to me you repeat the Bb G7 Cm7 F bit rather than do what I do at the end.
It's a really nice one, anyways 😀
*I think that's what it is.
Thanks for the messages on my soundboard - I know I've posted 50 times but this year I've included a lot of one-takers, as well as lyrics only, and poems that probably aren't songs.. so it's an illusion!! I was just trying to get a lot out of this FAWM and move forward after a long break and remind myself what I do and how to do it... as well as having fun with a couple of new things.. I've downloaded the cappella app.. it looks interesting (maybe pay the subscription!!) I ended up paying for songcraft cause its good, and soundtrap - but partly because I'm starting a youth- project which will involve others singing, talking, or playing on tracks.
Oh yes, Tin Pan Alley and other gems from the past--love it all. There is something strangely satisfying about snow shoveling (although despite his entreaties, I'm not going to NH to do it for @richaaaay). Not so much ironing. I don't mind it as a necessary part of quilt making, but I object to things with collars and sleeves.
Thank you for your appreciation of my song and notes. I almost wrote more directly about how the song was linked to our current situation, but then deleted it, hoping that readers/listeners would get it on their own. Thank you for being that understanding listener!
Thanks for listening to my Right Posh Gent. The wife is my husband's favorite part also. I'm working on a new Acapella video where my husband sings the lead.
You're welcome, Liz! You're a great partnership.
Have lived all over, but up near the panhandle now......next door to the middle of nowhere really, LOL
As my friend in Portland, Oregon sometimes says when she misses out on something we are doing here in Boston, “I’ll be right over!” I look forward to hearing you sing that takeout menu. 🥰🤣
" Is this a normal FAWM output for you?"
Nope. I made the cut the first couple of years, but last year I did 32 and this year I am on course for 40odd. It's the challenges and the skirmishes that take my tally up so high. I love being directed to write something. That's how I work best, from prompts. I don't give myself enough when I am on my own.
Yep, I spotted the references, v nice work!
Thanks for listening to All as One and the nice compliment! Glad you enjoyed it!
thank you so much, hmmm at a guess which bit you mean it might be "i don't believe that for one minute" will check your songs later you look like you are having a productive first fawm!
You inspired me!!!
I like your brain, too.....is there a part of me that fantasizes a trip down to D.C. (after vaccination!) and having a visit to one of your concerts being one of the highlights of the trip? Yes. Definitely! Keep up the great work!
Thanks for the lovely comments. I do plan on returning the favor later this evening. I actually see every comment you make on my songs on my soundboard. Tagging is helpful if you are replying to someone’s comment on one of YOUR songs, rather than going to the person’s soundboard to respond to them....It took me a couple of FAWMs to figure all this stuff out, so you are ahead of me!
I am in awe of your musical productions. This is my first attempt at FAWM, and I would like to up my "game" from just recording my voice and mandolin. I uploaded Garage Band and haven't had much success trying to input anything yet (I don't have an instrumental background, I was a chorus singer in amateur theatre long ago.) But , I love the way you are playing and recording images, and then re recording and putting them on the screen simultaneously. Are you recording on your computer and then using a software program to make the split screen?
Liz, I haven't been to the Mystic Festival but I have plenty of friends who either have or have worked at Mystic. My singing duo partner runs a shanty sing every week online and is more deeply into it than I am. I've done my fair share of shanty singing, but I've tended to do other type of English Close Harmony singing.
Liz, my songs with hearts with them are my favorite ones, in case you need a jumping off point for choosing one to listen to....I am very much an amateur musician, so my songs are not nearly as polished as yours....but I am being brave and trying new things, like working GarageBand into some of my recordings.
Nice tribute to your dad. Just listened again. Good to know the context...
Cheers, Liz! Thanks for your comment and kind words on 12:34 ... and here I am returning the comment at none other time than 12:34! 😉
Send me what you got ...I’ll give it a shot
I love Bossa!
Hey, I love your influences. Tom Lehrer, Tim O’Brien and Louis Armstrong are long time favourites. I look forward to listening to your songs. Glad you found this place. Happy FAWMing!
Left the audio untouched. Rooster is still "Le Coq" 😜
Love watching you play the ukulele! You’re amazing!
I'm not sure exactly how we would have a conversation on this site but I thought I saw somewhere that the best way to communicate with someone is through their Soundboard...So here I am. For the tune The Rock, you inspired me with your shaker, so that's on one track. I have a bass guitar track, acoustic and singing together as one track then one track of electric guitar just noodling some fills. The way you play the ukulele with all those voicings there is probably not so much need for an extra track (like my guitar noodling). The main track I played was rhythmic and percussive (like you said) so I thought some light fills would thicken it up a bit. Thanks for listening. I have no idea how collaborations work but if you have any interest let me know. Doesn't seem you need much help to make awesome tunes but I'm sure I'd learn a lot in the process. No pressure...
Liz, all your songs are fantastic. I've listened to them all and will definitely listen to whatever else you post. I love how you play the ukulele too...all those pretty voicings! Totally entertaining with the videos too. I just posted a new song, maybe you'll check it out. I'm pretty new to this songwriting thing so if you have any feedback fire away! Thanks. - Rich
I love the way you present your songs. I could not say wich I like most, good work.
No offence taken. I must admit I did wonder whether my story had inspired that line in 23.... 😉
So glad you liked my "Beginning and End" - it's the best love song I have ever written for Carmen. Congrats on your own 30 +
Thanks for your comment on Woodpecker's Song!
Thanks for the comment on my week 2 challenge song - taking on a 'challenge' and completing it can be very rewarding and is a great songwriting development tool.
Hi Liz, I appreciate your comments! I enjoyed reading your bio and the way you clicked with the ukulele is how I felt picking up the guitar when I was 12. Such a heartfelt and inspiring journey 🙏😊
Hi LIz - "Bossa Nova" means "New Bag". I was playing with "Boss of" (which sounds like "Bossa" in British English) and the Brazilian translation. I was saying you are the boss of that style but neither a New Bag or, heaven forfend, an old bag 😁
> Who is Tom's daughter?
I was thinking (incorrectly, as I see today) of Astrud Gilberto, wife of Tom Jobim-s musical partner, João Gilberto, and vocalist on some of their most well-lived boss songs. Somehow I had her in my brain as Jobim's daughter. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Astrud_Gilberto
You're off to a great first FAWM!
Hey there! Quick admin note: when you reply to people in your own song comments, they don't get notified. If you want to thank someone for commenting or reply to their comment, it's best to head over to their soundboard and reply there or they probably won't see it.
Love the first tune, great start to the month. 😀
The Byrds & Carole King
I once wrote an epic six or seven minute long song expressing my hopes for the new year that had just started. I had just met a lass who I thought was going to be the love of my life. I wrote her this long song with quite a complex structure.
I sang this in folk clubs that would politely listen to obscure, densely packed love songs and no-one ever said "Hey there's a section there that reminds me of something" - until one day a friend said: "Do you realise that second section is a direct lift from from "Going Back" by Carole King.
Back then there was no internet so I couldn't check out the original. But then the friend reminded me it was on a Byrds album she had. She put it on her stereo and .... Oops... There it was. I had heard the song years before, but didn't recognise my unconscious plagiarism when I came to write that section.
So I worked out a new tune for that section of the song and that's the version I have of it on Youtube.
All that positivity I am spouting in this epic love song came to an abrupt end when, a few weeks later, her father suddenly died and she broke off her relationship with me in her grief.
Good luck to you too! With all your influences, I'm sure you'll have so much to offer!