Ample

 

‘Ample’ is one of the few JustVera instrumentals. Quite an unusual track. Something about the structure, choice of instruments, atmosphere? Something I love anyway. Bill McCarthy added his rhythmic touch, Jim Bryan his growling bass groove and recently Dan Rosati dropped his mouthwatering saxy cherries all over the cake. Much obliged, guys!

Stranger

 

The starting point of ‘Stranger’ was a song I created some 4 years ago: ‘Lost your halo’ (https://justvera.com/2017/09/23/lost-your-halo/). Just love the sound of these programmed drums. I played around with a new direction, Tez Katajala came up with the lyrics, but no singer seemed interested to turn those into a vocal performance. So I decided to have a go myself… The result was fair, thanks to many hours of meticulous tuning/synching/editing. Still I felt the song deserved a lead singer. I invited Buck, who sang on previous JustVera tracks and fortunately he accepted the challenge. Long story short: I mixed all bits and pieces into the present version with his lead and my backing vocals. And all instruments and production by me/Reason. Three minutes of perky powerpop. So me.

I
Have a primal wound
Just trying to survive
By not getting too deep
Into other peoples lives

I’m
Trying to survive
Just trying all the time
I have a primal fear
An anxious depression
Of losing someone near
Of losing someone near


Stranger
When will you feel
When will you heal

Stranger
You’re a stranger
to yourself

My
Compulsive behavior
Compulsive behavior
When will I heal

When will I feel
When will I heal
And be loved

(Lyrics by Tez Katajala, vocals BuckM.&me)

.

It was back in 2014 when the first JustVera (mini)album got released: ‘What took us so long?!’. Four years later there was ‘Raw and Reckless’ and now there is ‘More than anything’.

35 NEW JustVera tracks, which I composed and produced with the help of dozens of musicians from all over the world. (Full list below.)
Be prepared for some amazing new and original stuff… Mastered by Insub and Tommy Hellsten. And Tommy offered to remaster the first two albums as well. So I decided to include these remastered tracks on ‘More than anything’ as a bonus.

All official JustVera tracks collected on one album. Enjoy.

These are the artists who contributed to JustVera. For the sake of Music. It was a pleasure and a privilege to work with you. More than anything.

Alan Abernethy
Alex Zulaika
Alexander K.
Alice Minguez
Amanda Moubarak
Amy B.
Andrea Spaziale
Andrew Boucher
Bill McCarthy
Bryan Shoemaker
Buck M.
Caleb Anderson
Cali Beach
Chris Bouchard
Christine Linge
Dan Rosati
Daniel Swain
David Koehler
Elizabeth Auzan
Ellen Kussy
Esther Bredius
Frederic Osuch
G TeePee
Gabro Jazz
Gustavo Abreu
Heidar Sigurdsson
Ian T.
InSub
Jan van de Garde
Jannik Gade
Jarek Adamowski
Jean Lui Toudou
Jeff Bragg
Jeff Dalton
Jen Carie
Jim Bryan
Joel Sattler
Joey Six
John Heavern
Jon Garcia 
Jordi Ribas
Kari DeNeal
Kris Pride
Lisa Dewey
Lloyd Plueschow
Loek van der Knaap
Louis Marchena
Marc Brouwer
Mark Adams
Mark Alan Dooley
Mark Bowen
Mark Miller
Martin Nilsson
Maurizio Marini
Michel Pilotte
Mike Patterson
Monroe De La Vega
Nicola Offidani
Nigel Robinson
NunoW.
Olivia Brame
Olivier Demaine
Oppy
Parmia Vaala
Patricia Kigilcim
Pepino Lorenzo
Peter Bomhof
Peter Hendriks
Ray Kaliss
Rick Farrell
Rob Glass
Robert Saint Denis
Sean DeCataldo
Serenn
Steve Rice
Sven-Martin Keil
Tarjei Skarlund
Tez Katajala
Thomas Hjorth
Todd Vierra
Todd W.
Tom H.
Tommy Hellsten
Tracy Hayden
Tracy Hutchison

Go ahead and cry

‘Go ahead and cry’ features Olivia Brame singing a mix of lyrics by Mike Mantecon and Tez Katajala. A beautiful song about accepting life as it is.

Photos on the wall
You run and hide
For a brighter, better day
While the summertime seems to fade, so far away

Thinking about days gone by
Is it my turn to cry?
Contemplation, consideration
Thoughts lead back to you

At the bright of day
When shadows still seem so real
And you never learn
The only constant is change
You don’t have to be perfect
But you cannot live like that
When nothing’s really worth it
And the hurt is on the attack

So let go of what’s holding you down
Spread your wings to fly
You don’t have to be perfect
But you can’t let this life pass on by

Never fear what’s ahead, what’s behind, what they said
Never fear what they think, what is real, what it seems
You don’t have to be perfect

Let go of what’s holding you down
And spread your wings to fly
Don’t ask why
Go ahead and cry

(Lyrics: Mike Mantecon/Tez Katajala, vocals: Olivia Brame)

The 5th dimension

Powerful vibrations: ‘The 5th dimension’. David Koehler&Buck M. as the lyrical/vocal team, JeanLui Toudou&Sotiris Petridis as the ultimate rhythm tandem. Great collab, cool JustVera track!

I met you once so long ago
In a place so far away
As we talked vibrations flowed
It filled me with the light of day

It was just a short time
You said you could not stay
Before I knew it you were gone
Though there was more I wanted to say

Eversince I knew
There was a connection to be sure
I’m desperate to go back and feel
That energy so pure
We live in separate worlds
Locked on separate tracks
We lost something beautiful
With no way to get back
No way to get back

I need to break the rules
I’ll travel place to place
Transform the timeline
Alter my life’s pace

It is my intention
Defying all convention
To seek the fifth dimension
And leave barriers of time and space behind

What’s it gonna take
To make my dream come true
To stop the clocks from ticking
So I can return to you
They say it can’t be done
That it’s a mad delusion
It’s mathematical impossible
But I won’t accept that sad conclusion
There’s got to be a way
To go back to that day
To keep you in my sight
To always feel that light

Show me how to pass
These universal laws
Through machinery
Or magic chance
To get a shot at sweet romance

Through time and space I’ll slide
To return to your side

It is my intention
Defying all convention
To seek the fifth dimension
To leave barriers of time and space behind

I’ll seek the fifth dimension
I’ll leave barriers of time and space behind

It is my intention
Defying all convention
To seek the fifth dimension
To leave barriers of time and space behind

I’ll leave it all behind

(Lyrics: David Koehler, vocals: Buck M.)

Steel mills and apple pie

Some 15 years ago I composed an instrumental canvas called ‘The ballad of Errol Warwick’. Recently I added an original love story, based on personal experience and transformed it into ‘Steel mills and apple pie’. Thank you G Tee Pee, Bill McCarthy, Caleb Anderson and Amy B. for helping me to create an epic piece, bringing back happy memories…

Nothing ever changes around this town
Nothing ever moves, it’s in the ground

Fifteen, high school, looking past the school room
She sat two rows in front of me
The one I wanted instantly
It’s raw when you’re a teen

Hung at the club where you played guitar
I listened it broke my heart
the drunks in the bar
drinking hard

It’s better than this, that I know

Mid life, now I’m twenty five
It’s a clown show, full flow
Played out and passed out on the bar floor
Saw your mother still serving slow

Malt to the flies and the guys from the yard
Hard men, working men
That’s all we are

Small town girls look for a car
A ride away to a dance in the bar
Nothing changed, nothing does,
Nothing will, the way things are
Nothing ever changes around this town
Nothing ever moves it’s in the ground
Of steel mills and crunching sounds

Thought I’d look up to you again
thought I’d think that’s what mother said
I met him at high school, the captain of the team
There was something about him, that stood out to me
He treated me good, he treated me right
It ended up leaving in the same night

Nothing ever changes, nothing ever moves
We’re all stuck in the ground
With nothing to lose

Been around the world
Had many nights
Some full of pain
Others of delight
Other wild times
So high on life

I’ve had many lovers of all kinds
I’ve rolled from bed to bed
from nameless faceless, hopeless covers
Missing you so much that
I can’t take it, I can’t take it

Nothing fills the hole of you
Nothing feels the same as you
Nothing works, work work harder
Run away you run further

So I find I’m here again
(Nothing ever changes around this town)
Back here again, sober, straight, saved
(Nothing ever changes)
Ghost of a town, ghosts are all around
(Nothing ever moves, it’s in the ground)
There’s no more draw than you
No more pull than your eyes
You keep me true
(Hypnotized by the local sound)
This is the life I found
(Steel mills and the crunch of apple pies)

Excuse me miss, do you know the way to the…? Well I’ll be, it’s you! Umm, how have you been? It’s been ages you look wonderful, striking actually.

It has been some time hasn’t it, I’ve been well. I’ve been traveling a lot with a man that I met. There are some days that I wish for a quiet moment without the motion of life swirling around me, but those times of trial have made me much stronger.

Sounds like quite the journey. Are you you doing anything right now? If you have time I know a beautifully little cafe right by the beach where we could catch up. I’d love to hear about your all of your plights and victories.

You know what, I think I might have an hour or two that I could spare.
Come on, let’s go.

Nothing ever changes around this town
Nothing ever moves, it’s in the ground
Hypnotized by the local sound
of steel mills and the crunch of apple pies

(Lyrics: G. Tee Pee, vocals: Caleb Anderson and Amy B.)

The Healing

Sure, it was my idea and it is my production. But my goodness… The über-excellent contributions of Joey six, Jim Bryan, Mark Miller and Jeff Bragg made to this 3-minute power ballad almost were too much for me. Do yourself a favour. Open up to 179 seconds of sheer class.

Now who am I?

Frustration, desperation
The seeds of this anxiety
What if I open my eyes?
If what I see I despise?
Powerlessness feeds insanity

Destitution my restitution
For all these atrocities

Reclamation, emancipation
Where did you leave the keys?

Each day begins the healing
Pages in the book of liberty

Just who am I supposed to be?

Starting early, not yet seaworthy
These first steps of sobriety
But am I immune to the lies?
Primed for another reprise
Prepare for another round of apologies

Now who am I supposed to be?

Remembering who I was
Essential to who I will be
I live for it all …

(Lyrics & Vocals by Jeff Bragg)

Wretch

Dark and awesome. That’s ‘Wretch’ alright. Sean wrote some first class lyrics and his vocal performance is beyond compare. Not to mention his wicked guitar playing. And on top of that there’s the solid bass Mark Bowen provided. Are you ready for some serious music?

I’m running out of time.
Before the loneliness is revived.
I’m searching for another drink.
The only way I think that I’m alive.

I’m running out of time.
I’m running out of time.
Before the emptiness will arise.
Before the emptiness will arise.

You don’t even have to try.
You don’t even have to try.
All you need to do is survive.
All you need to do is survive.

I’m running out of time.
I’m running out of time.
Before that person has arrived.
I’m searching for a new way out.
But what’s so wrong when they all think you are fine?

You don’t even have to try.
You don’t even have to try.
All you need to do is survive.
All you need to do is survive.

Why do I keep asking for more?
Why do I keep asking for more?

Why don’t we waste a little time?
Come on…it’s just some time.
I’m running out of time.

I know you,
Are keeping score.
Are keeping score.
Think you really win this war ?
You think you’ve really won this war?

(Lyrics and vocals by Sean DeCataldo)

Fully charged

Power, drive, pop. ‘Fully charged’ definitely has got it all. With the help of David Koehler, Buck M., VocalRun and Grandmaster Joey on leadguitar. Boost yourself:-).

Fully charged
Ready to stream
Livin’ large
A YouTube dream
A virtual world awaits
Altered states
Window to the collective mind
Human experience
All you can find

Pay a song
Take me on the go
Catch a score
Be where you need to be
Check this out
Have a split ego
I’ve seen it before
With me your mind runs free

All I need is battery power
I’ll keep you busy hour after hour
Hour after hour

Fully charged
Ready to stream
Livin’ large
A YouTube dream
The light is green…

Your crowd will descend
Following the trend
Meet there if you can
Following the trend
Stream until the end
Someone never known
Is a suddden best friend
I’ll be your best friend

Rumors catch fire
The truth is pretend
No time for reason
Must hit the send
Pumped up with power
All the knowledge of the planet
Doesn’t matter how you use it

I’ll feed your fire
I’ll help you fan it

Fully charged
Ready to stream
Fully charged
Ready to stream
Fully charged
Livin’ large
Fully charged
A YouTube dream
Fully charged

(Lyrics: David Koehler, Vocals: Buck M. & VocalRun)

Descendant II

‘Descendant II’ is the remake of an earlier version –https://justvera.com/2019/07/31/descendant/-, with an entirely different jazzy vibe. Lyrics by Tez Katajala, Bill McCarthy on drums and Jim Bryan on fretless bass. Marc Brouwer’s rearrangement of the piano part is truly great in every way and clearly showed the new direction. And on top of that: Kari DeNeal with an unequalled vocal performance… JustThat.

I can’t help who I am
I am a descendant
I can’t show who I am
I’m lost in the dissonance

I’d like to rise above the noise
But I’m stuck in the present
I’d like to fly away
But I’ve been grounded

I need you to help me
To keep from drowning
I’m lost in all the noise
Will I be found

Will I be found
Will I be found
Will I be found

To rise above the noise
I need to be persistent
I am a descendant

Lost in the dissonance
Stuck in the present
Trying to keep from drowning
To keep from drowning

(Lyrics: Tez Katajala, Vocals: Kari DeNeal)