Gimme Music

by Driftwood Soldier

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'Gimme Music' is the result of a songwriting experiment that collected stories from around Philly in May 2020, and compiled them into a patchwork quilt of experiences reflecting the first months of the Covid-19 pandemic. Hang on Philly, we love you.


Janie looks out her South Philly window, says 'I should go make something for dinner, some days just hit like a truck, I love my kiddo and his daddy but it's hard to give a- god damn- jungle gyms taped off like a crime scene, hopscotch spreading down the sidewalks like gangrene, the chalk outlines of plans I can't remember, got a baby girl coming in mid-December

Gimme music, so I can hold on. Gimme music, so I can hold on.

Zeke's cold in the void, in the vacuum, an internet astronaut jetpack set to zoom, cameras off and the screen fills with black squares, headphones on you could be anywhere, the final frontier from your home office armchair, spaceXing out in the playground of billionaires.

Gimme music, so I can fly on. Gimme music, so I can fly on.

Ash is walking down the middle of Larchwood, she says 'More than a trim, I want a reason to look good. Butterflies dancing just like I'm tryna, but my feed's full of posts blaming bat labs in China. Uncles mansplaining Pelosi's illuminati, but look at those godamn crocuses I wanna kiss somebody.'

Gimme music, so I can hold on. Gimme music, so I can hold on.

JC says 'My partner's mama lost the thread again, and now his youngest sister needs a bed again. Starbursts and anime, hope sex and rage, I haven't grown up at all since I was her age. We act out plays from her amazing maze-like teenage brain, we're strangers in Tuscany meeting on a midnight train, we're Gold Rush prospectors, The Devil and Faust, we're trying to build a true friendship without leaving this rowhouse.

Gimme music, so I can build on. Gimme music, so I can build on.

Billy's old enough to know better. He says 'What my daughter don't know can't upset her, but every evening as the sun's going down I walk three blocks over to the cemetery grounds. The gravestones are full of names, like the evening news, of somebody somebody else was so sad to lose. I look for my own in the fading light, I'ma live 'til I die but until that night give me music, so I can hold on.

Gimme music, so I can hold on. Gimme music, so I can hold on. Gimme music, so I can hold on.


released August 28, 2020
Driftwood Soldier is:
Owen Lyman-Schmidt: Vocals, Mandolin, Suitcase, License Plate
Bobby Szafranski: Bass Guitar, Bottle Caps

Melina Harris: Vocals
KooF: Trumpet, Flugelhorn

Written by Owen Lyman-Schmidt
Arrangement by Driftwood Soldier
Mixed and mastered by Bobby Szafranski
w/ a special shout out to Alex Santilli at Spice House Sound

Photo by Caitlin Quigley

The project was supported by the Pennsylvania Humanities Council, the Federal­-State Partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the partnership of the Philadelphia Folksong Society.


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Driftwood Soldier Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Driftwood Soldier isn't your average mandolin-bass foot-stomping gutter-folk duo.

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