Jerry Strull here……coming to you from Pasadena, California. Welcome to my website! I implore you to read on….
Dear reader, I want you to understand that I’m not merely interested in entertaining folks with these songs I’ve written. I’m on a mission. That mission is to promote the preservation of “melody” and the “song form” in popular music. What does that mean? Well, Don McLean alluded to it in a recent interview. I think he echoes the sentiments of many here:
Don McLean, the 74-year-old singer best known for his 1971 hit “American Pie,” says he is not impressed with the music of today.
The singer-songwriter believes times have certainly changed since his early days in the music industry, and he’s claiming there is no longer music of substance when he turns on the radio.
“Music is not on the radio. There’s some form of music like sound, but it’s not music to me. There was a show called ‘Name that Tune’ back in the 1950s, and by the fourth note, they would say, ‘Oh, that’s ‘Strangers in the Night.’ There’s nothing on the radio you can name in 20 notes, almost,” he continued.
The singer-songwriter added that today’s catchy songs involving notes and choruses “repeated over and over again” end up becoming “drummed into your head or makes you want to hang yourself.”
“It’s not a hook,” he said.
Of course, the folk-rock legend said that he does still have faith in musicians such as Paul Simon and Paul McCartney who are likely “still writing melodies.” However, he claimed today’s musical groups don’t know how to write a melody — at all.
“They have a lot of riffs. They’re very cool and the records are great but they’re not melodies and the lyrics are not about anything,” McLean added of today’s hits. “It’s very vague and vacant.”
So, dear reader, this is precisely where I’m coming from. I’m here to tell you there are still songwriters out there who write the kind of popular songs that McLean reminisces about. Songwriters who are “still writing melodies” with lyrics that tell stories. The “song form” he eulogizes is not dead in popular music. At least not yet. I offer to you the songs you’ll find on this website as examples. They’re my contribution to preserving a valuable tradition.