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This is the newest song to come from my studio and is a new effort for me.  I am learning how to use the "piano roll" and "Score" midi editors in my DAW and Logic Pro 9, the software I use to track and master. I wanted this song to be a simple guitar track with strings for the sole backup.  I also recorded the lead and backing vocal myself. This is the fourth test burn...I still need to work on "swells" in the string parts and perfect the mix, but it's a work in progress!  I never finalize everything until I have all the songs recorded for the album because I want to do that all at once from the pre-mixes to give them a cohesive feel and sound.  Thanks for listening and comments!

Here are the lyrics:

My Old Coat              

When we were strangers somehow you seemed to know

How the cold will reach right in, and wrap around our souls

Now only you can warm me, warm me to my core

And my old coat can’t keep me warm anymore

Sometimes a love story is written to be read

Sometimes the silence, is all that needs to be said

The heat rises to the ceiling, but it’s cold here on the floor

And my old coat can’t keep me warm anymore

In the desert the sun is all you can think about

On the frozen tundra it’s the sun you can’t live without

You are the warmth   behind our doors

And my old coat can’t keep me warm anymore

When we were strangers somehow you seemed to know

How the cold will reach right in, and wrap around our souls

Now only you can warm me, warm me to my core

And my old coat can’t keep me warm anymore

Copyright M. Edward Sparks & Pepperland Productions  2010

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Replies to This Discussion


I just listened spellbound to this.  Tears came to my eyes.  What a wonderful song!  So simple yet so to the point and so lovingly rendered.  Cellos always get to me so I'm sure that helped, but seriously the strings were very moving and added the right mood to complement the delicate guitar work and the almost ethereal vocal.  Your voice and the arrangement complement each other perfectly.  Even the backup vocal track is just right and sounds so much like a woman (pefect) that I had to read your note again to make sure it was you.  The swells sounded good to me, but you have a better ear and know exactly what you are looking for, so that's all I can say about that.  My only suggestion is to bring up the gain on the vocals just a tad, or take the guitar down a little.  I struggled a little over the title (The song is not really about a coat), but now I like it because of the comparison between a comfortable familiar thing and an equally or even more comfortable love, so I hope that's what you were after. 

Wow, what a great creation!  Thanks for sharing it.  Going to play it for my wife now.


The "Old Coat" could just be a past lover...maybe? Can't be warmed by a past lover, but the new one just understands and wraps that warmth around the singer...I would rather the listener make it meaningful to them...but, hey, thanks for the glowing review!!!  I will listen again, when I make my final mix, for your vocal/guitar track I said I leave the final mix decisions until the end of all tracking, but I will make note of it!  May I use your comments on my website under the "People are talking" page?  Thanks, Edward    

Or maybe the old coat represents anything the writer had been using as a substitute for the real thing -- true love (My wife's interpretation, and she, too, really likes the song).  Of course, you can use my comments, anytime.


Both my wife and I agree it is a beautiful song! The sentiment is warm like the coat and the strings sound lovely! I agree with Walt that the vocals need to be more upfront so you can hear the words clearly. But what a great TEST BURN! Well done!




I always look forward to a new song from you and this one was worth waiting for!!!! When you find something or more likely someone, who warms you from the inside there's no real reason for the old coat anymore. The song is beautifully done and brought warmth to me simply by listening to it!!



Very nice Edward. I agree with the previous suggestions of making the vocal a little more prominent. I would also pull back a hair on the reverb on the vocal. Particularly with the backing vocals which function like a reverb in any case. Editorially too, I found myself thinking that I would emphasize the "Old" in the lyric.


Perhaps it is a measure of my own embittered state that I find myself identifying with the old coat... ;*(

Thanks for listening and all the comments my friends!  I will print out this page and put it in my file for when I go to do the "Mass Mixdown" at the end of tracking and review and audition them then!  Always a pleasure to share here!  Edward


Damn, that is one fine tune.

I agree with Walt about the rightness of the components. The Guitar playing is terrific and precise. The strings play a fine counterpoint to the melody and compliment the more percussive picking pattern with their rounded edges. I also agree that you could notch up the vocals because, frankly, you have a very nice voice. My old gravel blues voice turns green with envy at the sonority of your singing.

Your vocal sound is good enough that (were I the producer) I might dial back on the reverb (think a young James Taylor) and trust its complexity to carry the tune. The harmonies sound quite good and to my mind offer further argument for boosting the vocal level. The doubled voices add enough space to make the reverb superfluous, but this too may be a matter of taste.

Thanks for sending this out. I feel inspired. You should feel proud.



Thanks Michael...if I wasn't inspired, I am now!!!  Now back to recording my next tune!  Edward

Michael, I have a page on my website called "People are talking" and I would like to use some of your comments about the song on that that okay with you?  Here is the link to the page so you know what you are agreeing to! There are comments there from the US and other parts of the world!  Thanks for considering it! Edward

For anyone  interested, here are the lyrics with guitar chords in a PDF format!  I am working on a full score Logic Pro 9 software's Score editor.  Thanks, Edward


Okay, you asked for it...well, some of you!  I have finally finished (I think!) the string parts on My Old Coat and brought up the voice and lessened the reverb and am posting it for a second round of comments from you all! It will get a final mix in the end.  Thanks so much for your time!  Edward 



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