Can't Let Her Go

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Nick2012
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Can't Let Her Go

Post by Nick2012 » Tue May 24, 2011 5:34 am

For review and comment...

<<< NOTE: A revision is further down in the thread >>>

Can't Let Her Go ©Nick LaFrance

When I came home
And smelled her perfume
I thought "What a surprise"
And searched room to room

But she was not there
A letdown on its own
Then my heart shattered to realize
Her things were all gone

Pre-chorus
I should have seen this end
But denial is a tragic friend

Chorus
I can't let her go
Can't face the thought of cry'in
I can't let her go
I'll change her mind, or die try'in

Spare key on the counter
Holding down the note
Took all my strength to lift that key
And read the words she wrote

"I hope life is good to you
I just can't be a part anymore
Love is gone and so am I
I had the landlord lock the door"

Pre-chorus
The sun just set in 44B
In the summertime, at 7:03

Chorus
I can't let her go
Can't face the thought of cry'in
I can't let her go
I'll change her mind, or die try'in

Bridge
I know she's hurt, I know she's upset
But it's just no reason to give up yet

Chorus
I can't let her go
Can't face the thought of cry'in
I can't let her go
I'll change her mind, or die try'in
Last edited by Nick2012 on Wed Jun 22, 2011 1:15 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Can't Let Her Go

Post by darlenemclyrics » Sat Jun 04, 2011 8:57 am

Hey Nick..I find the bridge needing something more ..I know she's hurt,I know she's upset,,why is she hurt/upset?,,the bridge needs more drama..
you cheated,,you lied,,,she found someone else,what is she giving up on?....just my 2 cents
Darlene

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Re: Can't Let Her Go

Post by Nick2012 » Wed Jun 15, 2011 12:47 am

HA! Too funny. You've given me pretty much the same advice I gave on the "I Can't Live This Way" thread on P2P. I said the song needed to explain why the woman is now at her wits end. I guess now I need to heed my own advice. Let me give this some thought. Thanks!

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Re: Can't Let Her Go

Post by mikeShort » Sat Jun 18, 2011 9:19 am

Nick2012 wrote:For review and comment...

Can't Let Her Go ©Nick LaFrance

When I came home
And smelled her perfume
I thought "What a surprise"
And searched room to room

But she was not there
A letdown on its own
Then my heart shattered to realize <== does this line scan? I can't hear the music, so I can't be sure, but I'm concerned
Her things were all gone

Pre-chorus
I should have seen this end <== this sentence structure sounds like it's set up just to rhyme
But denial is a tragic friend <== which is too bad, because THIS is a great line!

Chorus
I can't let her go
Can't face the thought of cry'in <== picky editor: it's spelled "cryin'" because we're leaving out the 'g', so you put the apostrophe where the 'g' used to be.
I can't let her go
I'll change her mind, or die try'in

Spare key on the counter
Holding down the note
Took all my strength to lift that key
And read the words she wrote <== like this verse

"I hope life is good to you
I just can't be a part anymore
Love is gone and so am I <== why?!? (I know I'm not the first to ask, but I want to know)
I had the landlord lock the door"

Pre-chorus
The sun just set in 44B
In the summertime, at 7:03 <== or ... in the morning at 7:03?

Chorus
I can't let her go
Can't face the thought of cry'in
I can't let her go
I'll change her mind, or die try'in

Bridge
I know she's hurt, I know she's upset <== you tell us, but we have no evidence, because we haven't been shown
But it's just no reason to give up yet

Chorus
I can't let her go
Can't face the thought of cry'in
I can't let her go
I'll change her mind, or die try'in
I feel like I'm picky, so I'll just add I hope this helps. Feel free to ahve a shot at my stuff when you get the chance :)
Last edited by mikeShort on Sun Jun 19, 2011 2:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Mike

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Re: Can't Let Her Go

Post by Nick2012 » Sat Jun 18, 2011 10:31 pm

Hey Mike,

I really appreciate (GREATLY) the time you've taken to give me this feedback.

There is no music yet. Unlike my normal method, I decided to try writing lyrics first. I'm sure once I come up with chords and melody I'll have to trim some syllables to make things fit. Your concern about the line scanning is noted.

I was happy to read that my favorite verse of the song is also the one you liked. And the line you call great (Thanks!) is my 2nd favorite. My 1st favorite is the last pre-chorus, although it may need tweaking. What I'm trying to convey is that his world just went dark, even though it's still daylight. Because the sun sets before 7:03 during some parts of the year, I put "in the summertime" to indicate season. 7:03 is meant to be PM. The very first verse sets up that he's returning home from work. Although I concede I haven't made that crystal clear. I should work on that.

The basic premise is he and his long-time girlfriend (who does not live with him) have had a recent fight (one of many). He never sees his own faults and typically just waits her out thinking it will blow over and she'll come round. He takes the relationship for granted. When he comes home from work he smells the perfume and assumes she's there ready to "forgive". But she's taken her CD's, her toothbrush, etc. and ended the relationship. Granted, one may have to read a lot between the lines to get all this.

I hear what you and Darlene are saying about the "why". The TAXI screeners seem to focus on the "why"s also. I'm not a pro and obviously my opinion is unqualified, but I disagree with this push to make a song's storyline crystal clear. What's wrong with leaving room for interpretation? Imagine if Jimmy Buffet submitted "Margaritaville" to TAXI and a screener sent it back and asked, "WHAT... is his own damn fault? What has caused him to just waste his life away?" Just my 2 cents. (If I'm missing something here and comparing apples to oranges, someone please chime in and let me know. I'm here to learn.)

But, hey, when in Rome. If you want to be successful (as in get music forwarded) you have to play by the current industry rules. I totally get that. Just for the learning experience, I'll re-write this to express the premise more clearly and re-post.

Thanks!

Nick

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Re: Can't Let Her Go

Post by Nick2012 » Sun Jun 19, 2011 9:33 am

OK, a BIT of a rewrite here. Pretty much a whole new song actually. There's no previous argument or cheating, lying, etc. She's not angry. She's gone simply because he can't meet her emotional needs. I also changed it from 1st person to 3rd. Thanks for the feedback. It drove me to do this revision. I'm not saying it's now perfect, but I think it' tells a much better story. Still open to feeedback though.

<<< NOTE: A 2nd revision is further down in the thread >>>

Can't Let Her Go ©Nick LaFrance

V1
He comes home from work
And smells her perfume
He thinks, "What a surprise"
And searches each room

V2
But she is not there
A letdown on its own
Then he's shattered to find
Her things are all gone

Pre-chorus
He should have known their time would soon end
But denial is a tragic friend

Chorus
He was blind to her needs
Now he can't let her go
Deaf to her pleas
Now he can't let her go
Not one for romance
Now he can't let her go
Wants one more last chance
'cause he can’t let her go

V3
Spare key on a chain
That anchors the note
Took all his strength to lift that key
And read the words she wrote

V4
"I hope life is good to you
I just can't be a part anymore
I need more love than you can give
I had the landlord lock the door"

Pre-chorus
The city outside is still blush from the day
But the sun just went down in 44-J

Chorus

Bridge
Funny how want only lives in a void
Clutching a key he now pines for her voice
He's made up his mind that he won't let her go
Foolish to think that he still has the choice

Chorus
Last edited by Nick2012 on Thu Jun 23, 2011 6:48 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Can't Let Her Go

Post by mikeShort » Sun Jun 19, 2011 2:22 pm

More really good lines now ...

"Foolish to think he still has a choice."

I don't like "pines." Longs? I think it will sound better sung, too.

I had to read the first line of the bridge four times to get it, but I think HEARING it would not be that tough. I kept saying long-I lives for short-i lives.

Leaving things open ended is fine, but Taxi guys will complain when you say something like: "He should have known their time would soon end" This line is a "tell" line, and we haven't been shown. So, as an audience, I'm going to ask how we were supposed to know this. Think about it this way: you as the singer are giving words to the way we feel about the situation. But in this case, we don't have enough information to form an opinion, and nod with you saying "yeah, I know what you mean." We are not emotionally involved in the protagonist's situation because we don't know enough. Does he deserve this? Could he have done something different? Is he a total jerk? We don't know, and consequently, we don't know how to feel. That's why this is problematic.

Contrast that with the line from my song that you really liked: Sunday morning and it tastes like rain. The audience immediately plugs into the situation and knows how to feel, admittedly about the weather, but the weather in that song is a backdrop that carries enormous emotional baggage with it. Your empty apartment does the same thing. And contrast it with your line: the sun setting in the apartment does the same thing. But "he should have seen it coming" doesn't, because we have nothing to plug into.

That's what I'm thinking anyway. Hope this helps.
Mike

"It's not bad. It's just not DONE."
The tall member of 2Late (http://www.2lateonline.com)

Nick2012
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Re: Can't Let Her Go

Post by Nick2012 » Sun Jun 19, 2011 9:08 pm

Thanks for the continued feedback.

"Funny how want only lives in a void"

Great line if I do say so myself. I always try to express common themes without resorting to cliché. I didn't want to say, "You don't know what you got, until it's gone", or "You only want what you haven't got", etc.

Actually the line was originally "Funny how want only exists in a void". But I think that line would be harder to sing. I see what you mean about it being confusing in print. But, as you say, it will be clear when sung.

"Foolish to think that he still has the choice" was originally "Foolish to think he still has the choice". I added "that" when I began coming up with initial ideas for a melody. I could end up taking it out though. We'll see. Ever since the line...

"And in this ever changing world in which we live in" ended up in a song that was #2 on the charts, I figure all gloves are off when it comes to grammatical best practices : )

Yeah, I'm kind of with you on "pines". Again, that was just me trying to avoid the easy cliché. But I agree that "longs" would be better.

As for the first pre-chorus. What if I change it to...

She said if he didn't change, their days would soon end
But denial is a tragic friend

????

Nick

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Re: Can't Let Her Go

Post by Casey H » Mon Jun 20, 2011 5:11 am

Nick2012 wrote:For review and comment...

Can't Let Her Go ©Nick LaFrance

When I came home
And smelled her perfume
I thought "What a surprise"
And searched room to room

But she was not there
A letdown on its own
Then my heart shattered to realize
Her things were all gone

Pre-chorus
I should have seen this end
But denial is a tragic friend

Chorus
I can't let her go
Can't face the thought of cry'in
I can't let her go
I'll change her mind, or die try'in

Spare key on the counter
Holding down the note
Took all my strength to lift that key
And read the words she wrote

"I hope life is good to you
I just can't be a part anymore
Love is gone and so am I
I had the landlord lock the door"

Pre-chorus
The sun just set in 44B
In the summertime, at 7:03

Chorus
I can't let her go
Can't face the thought of cry'in
I can't let her go
I'll change her mind, or die try'in

Bridge
I know she's hurt, I know she's upset
But it's just no reason to give up yet

Chorus
I can't let her go
Can't face the thought of cry'in
I can't let her go
I'll change her mind, or die try'in
Hey Nick
One thing to keep in mind is the millions of songs written in the past about the woman leaving the man, "can't let her go", etc. To get a publisher excited, you'll really need something unique and different. Of course, a killer musical hook gives you a big edge.

I think you'd be better off with a total re-write, calling the song "(I'll) Die Trying". You want to get her back and will.... well, die trying.

On the words you posted, a number of lines don't work well including:

A letdown on its own (Awkward, non-conversational)

Then my heart shattered to realize (I think you realized and your heart shattered, your heart didn't 'realize')

But denial is a tragic friend (MHO is maybe denial is such a good friend or similar--- more conversational)

The sun just set in 44B (Don't you mean outside the window of the apt? The sun doesn't set inside)

In the summertime, at 7:03 (Doesn't say anything relevant. Make every word count)

Verse 2 is the best written IMHO...

Just my 2 cents over coffee... As I always say... DISCLAIMER: My first hit has yet to be written... :mrgreen:

Casey

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Re: Can't Let Her Go

Post by Nick2012 » Mon Jun 20, 2011 7:40 am

Hi Casey,

I really appreciate the feedback, but I submitted a re-write on Sunday that's 3 panes up from what you posted. Some of what you mentioned was already addressed. The whole "die trying" angle is out.

I might work on that "A letdown on its own" line. I see what you mean.

The sun setting in the apartment is a metaphor for a wave of dark depression hitting him. Believe me, anyone who's been there would understand. It's actually more like a falling sensation, but many more songs use the falling analogy. Stating season and time was relevant in that context. I wanted the listener to know that, outside, it was daylight. Anyway though, that part was re-written as well.

Mike said "But denial is a tragic friend" is a great line. I'm pretty pleased with it also. I think it's a right-brain left-brain thing. John Lennon would have loved it. Paul McCartney would say it makes no sense. If it's ever submitted, hopefully it will go to a SEVERELY right-brained screener : )

When you have time I'd like your opinion on the rewrite.

Thanks a lot for your comment about verse 2. With all your forwards and placements I definitely consider it a compliment.

Nick

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