From the Critics....
Issue 20 – December 2012
What Song are You Playin'?
By Mark Mardon
Former arts/entertainment editor and writer at San Francisco's Bay Area Reporter, and associate editor of the Sierra Club's Sierra Magazine.
Produced by Face the Music
Recorded at Sawdust Studio, NY
Imagine suddenly popping up from your desk, dropping your paperwork, picking up a guitar and belting out your pent-up workaday blues in front of your co-workers and boss – while broadcasting on the internet!
Now imagine one person after another standing up in the office, each burning with music, launching into scorching, mood elevating, damn-the-torpedoes songs about what's up for them, and what they intend to do about it.
In that case, if you recorded it all, you might get something like
a sassy, butt-kicking, witty album capturing the soul of the workplace experience with grit, guts, and good old-fashioned blues and rock-n'-roll vibes.
Your Work is Your Song
pulls together a cohesive collection of songs that tackle some of the more mundane aspects of work and transform the experiences into fun.
It's an album ideal for enabling harried workers to slough off office tedium and embrace the funkiness of work.
Produced by Ken McGloin of New York's Face the Music team-building experts, the album employs a badass but classy ensemble of blues/rock/country/punk musicians to effectively replicate the sound you might expect to hear coming from corporate workers who decide to throw decorum to the wind, drop their masks, and create their own homegrown soundtrack. You get a galloping mix of gripping, boasting and motivating songs that capture the flavor of the work experience.
People have all kinds of different issues in the workplace, and the 13 songs on
Your Work is Your Song
reflect that diversity of experience and outlooks.
The opening track,
, launches into a funky, oh-so-cool, electric-piano-driven blues vibe with smoky vocals by singer/pianist Akie Bermiss recalling Stevie Wonder. The lyrics reflect how fast-paced, heart-thumping workdays force you to collect yourself, take a deep breath, and consciously relax: "...well you mellow down easy when you really want to blow your top."
A groovy electronic keyboard rhythm keeps the beat in
, in which a cool dude sings "You're the maestro; / stoke the steam. / What's the music / you hear in your dreams? ..." It's an invitation to take on work as the composer of your life, which is exactly the idea behind Face the Music, which goes to corporate events and gets everyone to collaborate on creating songs about their work trials, tribulations and triumphs.
veers off into punk rock, guitars charging, drums pounding, coming out as an anthem of grumbling. The lyrics attest to the problem: "Up at 5, home at 10, go to bed, get up and do it again." They also offer up a deep desire: "I want to play--all night long."
A heavy bass guitar drives and
(Click link to hear in a music video) which aptly captures people's seeming obsession with texting, emailing, tweeting and the like. "I've got a virtual relationship / with my wife and kid back home," sings a man caught up in and exasperated by the head-spinning whirl of remote electronic communications.
Music focusing on corporate workplace experiences is pretty rare. This album is pure gold for those climbing the corporate ladder, determined to make it to the top, but ever looking back at what gets a person down. At that point, listening to this collection is the best way to get back on track.
P.S., Buying this album can lift your spirits in more ways than one. Proceeds from sales of
. The organization provides instruments and lessons for low income schools and schools who have had their music education budgets cut.
A Connection with Music
Now’s a perfect time to get
Your Work is Your Song
for yourself, and as a great give-a-way for friends and co-workers at the office. An eclectic, rocking collection of FTM-penned songs about work, life, change, and inspiration.
CD now at a
new low price
, mp3 download version, $7.99
Proceeds go to littlekidsrock.org to help those kids rock!
"The feed-back from our group was overwhelmingly positive and the laughs continue. You guys nailed it. The music and group songs were creative and fun; I truly have a great admiration for what you do. You make it seem so easy. It was terrific working with you and I hope your team enjoyed the experience as well."
Gerard Fasano, President
Lockheed Martin IS&GS-Defense
"The great thing about this was seeing everybody have such a great time, getting out of their comfort zones, singing and dancing like that–it was so cool. A great way for everybody to come together and share their experiences, share their stories, and come out of here of one mind and one voice to do some very important work tomorrow."
The McGraw-Hill Companies
"Paul has a good understanding of corporate cultures, and related easily to what people experience inside our company. This helped in the process of the Face The Music coaches helping our people come up with decent songs in a short period of time. We had a lot of fun while talking about what’s happening in our business!"
Dina Brughmans, Cytec
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