Jive Monkey Playlist: 9/27/13

Today’s post is gonna be a little different from your usual Jive Monkey Playlist post.  Not many of my friends know about my bloggie persona (Hmm, not sure how I feel about this when they do find out) but I just had to share the work of an old friend of mine.

Koo Chung is an amazing singer and songwriter.  I’ve lost touch with him years ago but a couple months back a college friend of mine posted a link to a Kickstarter campaign on Facebook asking his FB friends to support his friend, Koo.  Surely this couldn’t be the same person that I knew, right?  It’s amazing when different spheres of your life intersect and in this case, it was awesome to make that reconnection.  After viewing Koo’s video describing what he had experienced in the last few years and asking for support, there was no doubt in my mind that I wanted to be part of that support group.  (Heh, I’m a groupie.)  It’s quite the story and the album trailer will give you some insight into that story.

As of the 21st, the album has now been released through CDBabyITunes and Amazon.  Please check it out and I hope you will support it.  As I do on every Friday, I’ll share the songs which have struck a chord with me.  I started thinking of other artists while listening to the album to compare Koo’s music to for those who may not be familiar with it.  Sometimes I hear a little John Mayer, other times a little Coldplay, and the list of artists goes on and on.  The truth is that the style is all Koo’s because he always had the ability to make his songs feel universal while being uniquely intimate to the listener.

As oxymoronic as it sounds, that’s exactly how I felt about “Ruins & Remains”.  After watching the Kickstarter video and knowing what he had gone through, this clearly sounded like his story.  However, we can all relate to experience dark times and during those times it’s hard to see anything past those “ruins” and “remains”.  Like a game of Jenga, you know eventually that the wooden blocks are going to fall down.  So you just pick up the pieces and start all over again and build that tower as high as it will go.  If it falls down again, you start all over.

Koo Chung – Ruins And Remains

Ruins And Remains

I believed that I was bold and fearless
But it’s easy to deny what’s underneath the surface
Ran from pain like I did not deserve it
I’ve set fire to it all looking for a new beginning

I’ve been staring at the ground at all the pieces
And this beauty burned down is what I’m living

So build it up, build it up brick by brick
Hope is shattered and I’ve fallen for the trick
That ruins and remains aren’t worth keeping

Wasn’t hard to build my own glass ceiling
Just believe in what you’re told and live within that feeling
Begging time to wait and keep the light on
And I’m pleading in the dark, but it stops for no one

And I’ve been staring at the ground at all the pieces
And this beauty burned down is where I’m living

So build it up, build it up brick by brick
Hope is shattered and I’ve fallen for the trick
That ruins and remains aren’t worth keeping
So build it up, build it up though I am sick

All or nothing is a lie that I’m done with
Though I’m broken there is grace that keeps on giving

And if You’re only for the ones who get it right
Then I won’t even bother putting up a fight

Next up is “Any Other Way” and what I love about this song is the melody.  There is an interesting ebb and flow to it as the song is about the ups and downs of a relationship and more significantly, a marriage.  The song gets eerily calm and solemn when it refers to the tumultuous times and then his passion is reignited as he vows to make it work.  Can we get a collective aww?

Koo Chung – Any Other Way

Any Other Way

It was Fall 2008
I made a vow that I would stay
Your father placed your hand in mine
Said I would hold it till the end of time

Yet time had pulled us far apart
And far away from who we are
When winter came I’m sad to say
I’m the one who ran away

I was looking for a way out, on the way in
I was looking for someone to blame (but)

We’re both wrong, and we’re both right
But that won’t even matter when
We’re both through, we’ll both lose
But I’m not waiting for that day
It’s you and me and I can’t see it any other way

We’re a match in heaven made
But seldom do we feel that way
We sink behind the masquerade
With the weight of every day

We throw our words like jagged knives
Sharpened more with every fight
We cut the thread of man and wife
But can we sew it up again this time (this time)

I’m not looking for a way out, but a way in
I’m not looking for someone to blame, cuz

We’re both wrong, and we’re both right
But that won’t even matter when
We’re both through, we’ll both lose
So I’m not waiting for that day
It’s you and me and I can’t see it any other way

We’ve damaged our sight, with fight versus flight
When it was me versus you
But I know this time, if we’re on the same side
We will see a way through

You’re not like me, I’m not like you
(You’re not like me)
You’re not like me, I’m not like you
(I’m not like you)

We’re both wrong, and we’re both right
But that won’t even matter when
We’re both through, we’ll both lose
So I’m not waiting for that day
It’s you and me and I can’t see it any other way

We’re both wrong, and we’re both right
But that won’t even matter when
We’re both through, we’ll both lose
So I’m not waiting for that day
It’s you and me and I can’t see it any other way

Last song from today’s playlist is “Photo Love”, which is not on the “Brick by Brick” album.  There’s a different version (which Koo prefers) available on ITunes and Amazon but the lyrics to this version is deeply personal to me.  It’s been over 10 years ago when I first asked Koo to write a song for me to include in my film thesis project.  I was totally preparing for him to say, ‘No, I don’t really have the time.’  You know, the “Thanks but no thanks” speech but to my surprise, he was all like, ‘Sure!’  The song is a love song that accompanied my short romcom film.  It’s about regrets about not taking the chance when they had it and I still love it (and the lyrics) after all these years.

Koo Chung – Photo Love

Koo Chung – Photo Love

Photo Love

Staring into a face of a stranger
That I once knew so well
Shrink me, fit me into this picture
So I could be next to you again

‘Cause you’re nothing more
Than my photo love
You’re hanging on the walls of my memory
And you’re nothing more
Than my photo love
Won’t you climb out of my dreams
My photo love

I would stand there
And stall for hours
As you pose timidly
My only excuse to gaze at your beauty
And take one keepsake for me

‘Cause you’re nothing more
Than my photo love
You’re hanging on the walls of my memory
And you’re nothing more
Than my photo love
Won’t you climb out of my dreams
My photo love
My photo love

‘Cause you’re nothing more
Than my photo love
You’re hanging on the walls of my memory
And you’re nothing more
Than my photo love
Won’t you climb out of my dreams
My photo love

Are you more than a figment of my imagination
That’s haunting me

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