tip button

bf baker

songwriter, recording artist, publisher, experimental music hack, data juggler, slice of life videographer & wacky inventor from salt lake city, utah

Elementary Penguins

Elementary Penguins album cover



Recorded at home. All songs songwriter copyright, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP and songwriters as noted.

000056 (50K)Much of Elementary Penguins was written and recorded in February and March 2011. The impetus for my writing during that period was a website called FAWM. For several years now, hundreds of songwriters, recording artists, and musicians have come together on fawm.org for February Album Writing Month with an informal challenge to write an album of material during the year's shortest month. This year, I was also hoping to have a good start at having recorded a complete album by the end of February, and I ended up with eleven tracks mostly complete. Those familiar with my music will find a few songs here that were recreated from older songs. "Til the Money's Gone" is from way back in my 4-track cassette recording days (pre-GAJOOB)and was the first track recorded for this album. I was playing around with some iPhone music apps and created the basic track using Nanostudio. "If I Fell Off This Earth Tonight" and "Rain Come Down" (which is not included here) are two other recreations. "If I Fell..." was written around May 2000 collaborating with artists on tapegerm.com. Bev Stanton (Arthur Loves Plastic) uploaded loops of Lisa Montaciello singing various things and one where she was singing the first two lines of this song caught my ear. I took the two lines and wrote the rest of the song from there. This version adds a new bridge. Several other collaborators appear on the album. Don Campau (Santa Rosa, California - doncampau.com), Chris Phinney (harshrealitymusic.com), and Eric Hausmann (Jacksonville, Florida - spillingaudio.com) are artists I've connected with for over twenty years through my magazine and website, GAJOOB (gajoob.net) and elsewhere. Don sent a basic track for me to play with, I sent Eric a basic track for him to work magic, and Chris and I have been working together in Tapegerm for eleven plus years. I use his loops on a couple tracks here. iPhone apps are all over this album. The solos on "Money's Gone," "Crashing" and "Lego Bricks" to name just a few things. The latter song's title came from songfight.org, incidentally. Here you'll also see my first use of vocoder. I've always loved the vocoder sound. I think it's expressive in a strange way and I wanted to use it prominently on this album. As Ghosts progressed I hit a tangent and became more interested in its sound as an effect and building strange sounds. The drone pad on "Charlie" is one such result. Another new direction I wanted to explore here was capturing the "social" voice found in conversations streaming randomly through sites like Twitter and Facebook. For several songs on the album I compiled lyrics from entries posted here and there. These voices speak throughout. I play most everything you hear on the album, but you'll find lots of contributions too. Thanks to everyone who participated knowingly or not. Most of the instruments I've been using for many years, but my studio has been changing. Like many home recording artists, the recording gear is getting smaller and less costly. Free software helps spur creativity a lot. There's a new acoustic guitar on this album and I used the $59 ACID Music Studio as my recording software. My interface was an Alesis USB 4-channel mixer. I didn't use any outboard gear except my POD virtual guitar amps. Vocals were sung mostly into a SM58 Beta. I used a Rode NT1 for recording acoustic guitar and drum room ambience. SM57s are used as overheads for recording drums. My studio is a little 15x10 room in a 2-bedroom duplex near Salt Lake City. Visit bfbaker.com for more music from my song catalog. Tell me what you think.

Prior Squirm

music by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP

Bryan Baker: acoustic guitar, toy xylophone, toy chromonica

000047 (33K)

My Closet Full of Ghosts

music and lyric by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP

Bryan Baker: Alesis QS7 synths, Beatmaker for iPhone percussion, electric guitars, bass guitar, vocals
Could this explain my strange attraction
Imagination can get carried away
Reduced by small subtractions
That never mattered in the first place

I often wonder what it meant to you
And did you get what you wanted?
Was it something that I didn't do
That leaves me feeling haunted?

Now don't be scared
We've made it through, almost
No, don't be scared
It's just my closet full of ghosts

Am I tethered to the wrong one
And dangling like a false move?
Have I lost this fight to passion?
My subscription can't be renewed

Now don't be scared
We've made it through, almost
No, don't be scared
It's just my closet full of ghosts

Am I the last again to realize
I'll be left alone to wonder
How can such a great big blue sky
Be the thing I am trapped under?

Now don't be scared
We've made it through, almost
No, don't be scared
It's just my closet full of ghosts

000007 (61K)

'Til the Money's Gone

music and lyric by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP

Bryan Baker: Nanostudio for iPhone synthesizers, Bebot for iPhone synthesizer, Alesis QS7 synthesizer, vocals
This living from hand to mouth gets me down
The future's always in doubt
Nothing to do but sit and wait for fortune
To turn my frown upside down

Monday comes and I am off to earn a paycheck
I'm glad to be fed
But workin for the bossman's something I don't understand
I never seem to get ahead

chorus
You know it's not long 'til the money's gone
It's never long 'til the money's gone
You know it's not long 'til the money's gone
It's never long 'til the money's gone

I'm losing touch with the little child
He ran away
'Cos I'm selling my soul and shutting down 'til Friday
I'm so afraid

chorus

chorus

I feel chained like a slave - oh, do you understand?
Do you see the things I see
I wanna leave it in the dust, why don't you and I just
Run away and let it be?

chorus

chorus

000016 (48K)

It Hurts Every Time

music and lyric by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP

Bryan Baker: Nanostudio for iPhone synthesizer, bass and percussion, electric guitar and vocals
t hurts every time
It hurts every time
It hurts every time
It hurts every time
It hurts every time
It hurts every time
It hurts every time
It hurts every time
It hurts every time
It hurts every time
You breathe
You breathe
You breathe
You breathe

It hurts every time
It hurts every time
It hurts every time
It hurts every time
You breathe
You breathe
You breathe
You breathe

000013 (47K)

Dear Charlie

music and lyric by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP

Bryan Baker: Mouthmorphed acoustic guitar drone, police scanner field recording, electric guitar, synthesizer, vocal, eBow solo
Dear Charlie, I know you
Won't see things my way
But maybe with distance
You'll hold onto better days
I won't ask your forgiveness
I just want you to know

Oh, Charlie, I love you
That's why I must go
There's a darkness inside me
That you should never know

Dear Charlie, I can't be
The man you need me to be
I will only destroy you
Trying to find a release
I won't ask your forgiveness
I just want you to know

Oh, Charlie, I love you
That's why I must go
There's a darkness inside me
That you should never know

Dear Charlie, please know that
I want with all my heart
To see you grow older
And always take your part
I won't ask your forgiveness
I just want you to know

Oh, Charlie, I love you
That's why I must go
There's a darkness inside me
That you should never know

000048 (36K)

Out In Time

music and lyric by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP

Bryan Baker: Moog for iPhone, vocal
I will be out
All this time
Will it find me
Out in time?
I will be
I will be
I will find you
I will find
You

You Don't Deserve My Tears

music by bf baker and Don Campau, lyric by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP and Lonely Whistle Music

Bryan Baker: Moog for iPhone, vocal
Don Campau: Percussion, bass synth
You don't deserve my tears
All the bottled up years
How could you do this to me?
What does this really mean?

You don't deserve my tears
Only leers and jeers
How could you turn away?
What does this really say?

You don't deserve my tears

You don't deserve my tears
When knowing all my fears
How could you hurt me so?
What do you really know?

You don't deserve my tears

You don't deserve my tears
You don't deserve it here
I guess I should have known
What does this really show?

You don't deserve my tears
You don't deserve my tears
You don't deserve my tears
You don't deserve my tears

You don't deserve my tears

You don't deserve my tears
You don't deserve my tears
You don't deserve my tears
You don't deserve my tears

000054 (51K)

The Full Effect

music and lyric by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP

Bryan Baker: guitars, synthisizers, bass, piano, drums, vocals
Chris Phinney: synth loops
You feel the days rushing by
You feel the tears that you cry
You feel the tension take control
You feel something that you don't know

But you won't feel the full effect
Until you face your big regrets
Smoke your last cigarette
Take a bullet to the head

You feel the fever burning hot
You feel everything in you rot

But you won't feel the full effect
Until you face your big regrets
Smoke your last cigarette
Take a bullet to the head

You feel it mounting -- could it be?
You feel it buckle at your knees

But you won't feel the full effect
Until you face your big regrets
Smoke your last cigarette
Take a bullet to the head

000023 (49K)

Milanbound In the Rain

music by bf baker and eric hausmann, lyric by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP, and Spilling Audio

Bryan Baker: Moog synth, vocal
Eric Hausmann: guitars, bass, percussion
Cory Hill: percussion loop
I'm not your typical girl
How would you interpret this fame?
You're like a really stupid dog
Milanbound in the rain

Wasn't it you who said
life was like a plastic cup
To be used and then disposed of
Milanbound in the rain

decide how often to swing the machete,
Must be something in the water........
find out why you have been crawling
Milanbound in the rain

to segregate the chromosones
Let us hope the board listens
had to end your little comeback streak
Milanbound in the rain

in otherwords other friends could see
Can not bring myself to read the story
always been in opposition to the norm
Milanbound in the rain

Call me a skeptic, subversion is
Yes, this is exactly right
I worked in retail for ten years...
Milanbound in the rain

Nobody Notes

music by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP

Bryan Baker: guitars, synthesizers, vocals
Chris Phinney: percussion loop

000029 (47K)

His Favourite Lego Bricks

music and lyric by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP

Bryan Baker: Piano, synthesizers, bass guitar, electric guitars, percussion, vocals
Heuristics: synths
Resonan: digital error sounds
Diskhead: synth
Brandon K. Montoya: mason jar
Mental Anguish: insecticide synth
Mike McGary: synths
International Garbageman: clockwork
His favourite lego bricks
Are stacked up by colour
There on the table
Awaiting his wonder

His favourite lego bricks
Next to sealed cans of Playdough
A discarded wrapper
A Pokemon yo-yo

I look at the beach
But not at the ocean
I look at the beach
But not at the ocean

His favourite lego bricks
The stuff of believing
But the words on the chalkboard
Have all lost their meaning

I look at the beach
But not at the ocean
I look at the beach
But not at the ocean

His favourite lego bricks
Someday I'll return them
One brick by one brick
Where no one will disturb them

I look at the beach
But not at the ocean
I look at the beach
But not at the ocean

000049 (37K)

I Wonder If You Know That I Know What You Didn't Want Me To Know All Along

music and lyric by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP

Bryan Baker: Electric guitars, Alesis QS7 synthesizer, bass guitar, percussion, vocoder, vocals
I'm gonna tell you a secret
I bet you didn't know
I'm gonna tell you a secret
I bet you didn't know

I wonder if you know that I knew
What you didn't want me to know all along?

I'm gonna tell you a secret
You really should have seen
I'm gonna tell you a secret
You really should have seen

I wonder if you know that I knew
What you didn't want me to know all along?

I'm gonna tell you a secret
It's a big surprise
I'm gonna tell you a secret
It's a big surprise

I wonder if you know that I knew
What you didn't want me to know all along?

000053 (52K)

The Best Advice

music and lyric by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP

Lyric collected from a Twitter search on "advice".

CYSTEM: bass guitar loop (via Tapegerm)
Bryan Baker: Alesis QS7 synthesizers, electric guitar, vocoder
  • focus on 1 thing at time
  • do what you do best
  • when in doubt, "think about the biography"
  • the people closes to you knows you best
  • You'll never know unless you take the risk and try
  • marry a skinny truck driver
  • Stay true, stay you smile and NEVER SAY NEVER
  • just be yourself
  • do your homework and find out who is going to be the one to split you
  • OldRepublicanMen know what's best for me and my uterus
  • best advice I ever got. and it came from a stripper.
  • I think we all know that ur cats give terrible advice.
  • the best advice is best practiced then taught.
  • Follow the Fear
  • Follow your heart
  • each days a gift and not a given right
  • never give a crap about Anything. Just live, forgive and forget.
  • Life is too ef'n short!let's make d best use of it pls!"
  • Yu Ugly. Best Advice Is To Stay In Da Cut
  • you should probably just date a guy who doesn't like hardcore.
  • just walk away.
  • don't dress like a slut
  • wear a raincoat
  • If it's got tyres or a penis your gonna have trouble with it!!
  • declutter
  • Never sit down & try to work out your hourly rate
  • Silence is the best answer for all questions
  • Smiling is the best reaction in all situations
  • make 'em laugh, make 'em laugh, make 'em laugh
  • The worst men often give the best advice
  • Turn it twice during second half.
  • enjoy it while it lasts, it's not going to happen that often
  • at this stage there's no such thing as usually

000009 (40K)

We All Need Love

music and lyric by bf baker, published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP

Bryan Baker: Acoustic guitars, Alesis QS7 synthesizer, nLog iPhone Synthesizer, bass guitar, electric guitar, drums, vocals
I'm like a fish out of its water
You're a whale out on a binge
I know it's crazy to begin
You're a desperado riding
I look miserable in a suit
I'm a flipflop you're a boot

My corners all need dusting
You're edgy, I'm a moose
You're stupid like a fox
I'm an old and knotted puppet
You're a Slinky in the rain
I'm a Jack without a box

chorus
In the end we all need love
In the end we all need love
In the end we all need love
In the end we all need love

I'm simply stating fiction
You're swearing like a nurse
How could we ever be together?
You're undeniable, I'm weathered
I'm up for staying in
You're a pulley, I'm a lever

chorus

I'm fashionably weary
You're a parrot, I'm a mime
It oddly doesn't matter
I'm going extra miles
You're plotting like a cat
I'm balding, you're a mad, mad hatter

chorus
chorus

000058 (50K)

If I Fell Off This Earth Tonight

music and lyric by bf baker, Bev Stanton, Lisa Montaciello published by Blind Mime Music, ASCAP

Bryan Baker: electric piano, Alesis QS7 Altair IV synthesizer and percussion, electric guitar, vocals
If I fell off this earth tonight
I wouldn't make a sound
I'd watch it spinning out of sight
Spinning 'round and 'round
How could I find the words
How could they ever be as right
When all the stars that shimmer all around me
Say everything I might

If I fell off this earth tonight
I wouldn't make a sound
But if you held me really tight
And pulled me to the ground
Then could I find the words
And could they hold onto the night
With all the stars shimmering around us
Saying everything I might

Oh, if I don't say a word
Maybe time won't find us
And forever could
And, oh
I think forever knows
That time is blinded
When you hold me close

If I fell off this earth tonight
I wouldn't make a sound
I'd watch it spinning out of sight
Spinning 'round and 'round
How could I find the words
How could they ever be as right
When all the stars that shimmer all around me
Say everything I might