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December 17, 2010 / John Sieger

This Town Is Backwards

Clickk & Play: This Town Is Backwards



This is not what it seems. It isn’t a scathing indictment of our beloved city — in fact this instrumental waltz has nothing to do with Milwaukee. It was written almost unconsciously as I tried to ply my trade in the parallel world of jingles. The more dignified word is library music, but the idea is the same. It’s a lucrative field where the commercial need comes first and the idea, unfortunately, comes second. There are many skilled practitioners of this craft in Milwaukee and they were very patient and generous of their time as I spent some energy a couple years back trying to join their ranks, but every time I try to combine the words ‘music’ and ‘business’ some hidden force steers me to a place where I rediscover my love of the former. It rankles to say that I can’t work up the warm fuzzies over the latter. I did hear many examples of both good and bad work being done and set out to add my talents to this pool. I needed a ‘reel’ with examples of what I could do, so I wrote jingles for products like Milky Way, Doritos and Oshkosh B’gosh. I created about thirty little songs about places, including Milwaukee and Summerfest, another twenty or thirty birthday songs (including Slacker Birthday, my entry for Dec. 1). Then there was sports music. Football struck me as completely non-musical, which is funny, because the only team I truly love is the Packers. Baseball has a richer and more musical tradition and I wrote a pile of songs about a game I am pretty much immune to. I even wrote one about Bob Uecker, who I love. Some of these, especially the Uecker song, you will hear in the future. One day, while I was taking a breather from all of this work, which I have to say was terrific fun, this humble little waltz presented itself. I tried fitting some words to it, something about a backwards, Lake Woebegone kind of place, but nothing stuck. So this is the residue of my career distraction of a few years back. I’m pretty sure I’m not meant for that world and quite happy to continue writing for my own pleasure. It’s therapy, bio-feedback, entertainment and many other things to me, but it’s always created in a world where dollar signs are not hovering above my head. I’m Backwards.


© 2010 John Sieger



Leave a Comment
  1. don / Dec 17 2010 10:17 am

    Made a bit of time to listen now out of curiosity. I guess I should feel guilty in saying that’s a catchy little piece of music there! LOL


    • John Sieger / Dec 17 2010 11:27 pm

      Guilt? Save that for us recovering Catholics!

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