about

undrgrndman is a singer-songwriter / storyteller based in Los Angeles, whose songs show influences from old school funk, r&b, rock, hip hop, electronic, and classical music. rather than align to a specific musical genre, he strives to tell a story with each song. though a keyboardist at his core — he toured internationally as the synth player for p-funk (parliament funkadelic) — undrgrndman plays multiple instruments, including bass, guitar, and drums. all songs are written, arranged, composed, produced, and performed by undrgrndman.

I don’t believe that music comes from some inexplicable, magical place. While I am unable to explain some portion of the process, the great majority results from very real experience. And this is why we either love or hate an artist—either we identify with that experience or we don’t.

Like any other medium, in music, choices have to be made. My intention here is to showcase the work in its entirety—to reveal as much as possible of its technical and literary aspects, and the reasoning behind my choices. Of course, I have mixed feelings on this. The listener brings so much of his/her personal experience to a song that there is a danger in ruining the enjoyment by revealing too much. On the other hand, music is just my chosen medium of expression. Ultimately, I’m a writer, and perhaps a more nuanced presentation of the work will provide an added level of satisfaction for the listener.

And so, at the risk of revealing too much, I will pull back the curtains, and show the work in the most honest way possible. Spotlight songs, lyric excerpts, detailed descriptions—all aspects of the art at the forefront. That’s the hope anyway.

~ G.

album: riot

featured track: long way away (1984)

grey skies above me again.
has it ever been different than it is right now?
and the wind is not a friend.
does it ever end? will it ever slow down?

our main character is stuck in a mundane existence, and enveloped in a cloud of oppressive pessimism (expressed musically as much as lyrically). yet he’s struggling with a vague remembrance of better days (of blue skies)...

politically, the song is a critique of tactics used to obscure the past (to cloud our remembrance of better times) — to limit expectations, and diminish hope.

“1984” simultaneously references the better days of past, and the dystopia described in Orwell’s “1984”, which suddenly feels all too familiar...


featured track: (put in) for the weekend

they don’t like it when we think too long about it
they give us just enough to keep us all from shouting

we’re just waiting for the day to come
no more working for the worthless ones
we only put in for the weekend so we can begin to be...
what we’ve been dreaming that we would be

they don’t like it when we’re acting like we doubt them
so they give us just enough
they get nervous when we’re looking like we’re crowding
so they take just enough

we’re just waiting for the day to come
gonna take the floor and raise it some
we only put in for the weekend so we can begin to be...
what we’ve been dreaming that we would be

on its face, this is a carefree, feel-good song (inspired by many great feel-good songs from the 70s and 80s). but it’s also an examination of this particular genre of song...

there’s a reason we love feel-good songs – especially in bad times. they offer an escape… a diversion. they free our minds from mundane, tedious, or serious concerns...
and that’s a beautiful thing. but in many ways, diversions are the ultimate control mechanism.

on the album, this song immediately precedes “long way away (1984)”. the songs are two sides of the same coin.


album: thou shalt

featured track: thou shalt

thou shalt learn to love. shalt love to live. shalt live to die.
you've heard no but I say.
thou shalt far exceed mediocrity. shalt plant new seeds.
you've heard no but I say.
thou shalt overcome. shalt go beyond long lost gardens.
you've heard no but I say thou shalt.


featured track: trail of tears / put the gun down

it's the end of the moment. it's the only way home.
I don't know where I'm going. I keep on walking.


featured track: father

are you ever going to help us, father?
can’t you hear your sons, your daughters?
it’s getting harder every single day. it’s a struggle just to keep the faith.
will you lead your lambs to slaughter?


featured track: sex and murder (session 2)

why don't you just start from the beginning.
tell me the first thing that comes to your mind. begin.


featured track: love come

your love can fill me.
yes I’m sure.
your love can heal me.
this I know.

videos

uncut videos of live studio play

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