The Second Arrangement (And Other Obscure Steely Dan Covers)

by John Tabacco

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1.
Pour out the wine, little girl I've got just two friends in this whole wide world Here's to reckless lovers We all need somebody Stashed in the yellow Jag I've got my life and laundry in a Gladstone bag You should know the program Just one red rose and a tender goodbye [One last goodbye] And I run to the second arrangement It's only the natural thing Who steps out with no regrets A sparkling conscience A new address When I run to the second arrangement The home of a mutual friend Now's the time to redefine the first arrangement again It's a sticky situation A serious affair I must explain it to you somehow Right now I'll just move back one square Here comes that noise again Another scrambled message from my last best friend Something I can dance to A song with tears in it Old friends abandon me It's just the routine politics of jealousy Someday we'll remember That one red rose and one last goodbye [One last goodbye] Then I run to the second arrangement It's only the natural thing The ruse steps out with no regrets A sparkling conscience A new address When I run to the second arrangement The home of a mutual friend Now's the time to redefine the first arrangement again
2.
COME BACK BABY I don't like waiting for a knock on the door I don't like wondering why I got no mercy for a man and his tears He's just living a lie I got a feeling like I'm losing my cool That's no way to be You got me crying got me playing the fool That's what you're doing to me You gotta come back baby I don't want to say how long it's been Five days and I gotta know now Come back baby I don't want to live alone again My old man never taught me how I don't like lying all alone in my bed Nobody calling my name I can't say thank you for a kick in the head But I need you just the same See me sitting by the side of the road People staring and smiling They got no mercy for a man and his tears Can't you hear me cry You gotta come back baby I don't want to say how long it's been Five days and I gotta know now Come back baby I don't want to live alone again My old man never taught me how
3.
OH WOW, IT’S YOU AGAIN When I'm sure you're gone at last I make believe that I have no past I make a cheer and wipe away all the tears Take another room - Find another friend And when I feel that you're not real I stop and then Oh wow, it's you again How odd I should meet you here Oh wow, it's you again You haunt me - You taunt me Why don't you disappear? This hotel had a view One brick wall and shades of blue I paid my bill and started over again I flipped another penny - counted up to ten I let her rip just like a gypsy dog and then ( chorus ) In this warm foreign place There's not one familiar face It seems this time I left myself far behind I write another letter I know I'll never send I lock the door and walk out for some air and then... Oh wow, it's you again How odd I should meet you here Oh wow, it's you again You haunt me - You taunt me Why don't you disappear? *In my head it seems so easy to work the pieces in We had much in common you and I But the picture becomes ugly As the truth solidifies And just when I should realize That it's me I've got to find... Oh wow, it's you again How odd I should meet you here Oh wow, it's you again You haunt me - You taunt me Why don't you disappear?
4.
ANDROID WAREHOUSE Daytime you're to proud to brag About the badge you wore Nighttime you're to tired to drive Your change across the floor All your guns are gone I'm told Or in the Aerodrome Did you die the day they sold The ones you left at home Hold my hand in the Android Warehouse Who's to know if you take a dive Ain't life grand in the Android Warehouse What a burner when you take off your goggles and find? That you're alive That you're alive Did you really gobble up The things they claimed you ate Were you fit to swallow it Or scared to clean your plate Have you tried to calculate The hours they'd applaud I would guess it's somewhat less For just another fraud Hold my hand in the Android Warehouse Who's to know if you take a dive Ain't life grand in the Android Warehouse What a burner when you take off your goggles and find... That you're alive That you're alive That you're alive...
5.
YOU GO WHERE I GO I'm about to cry and I don't know the reason I can see the start of a difficult season I can't let it get me down When everything is going wrong Ain't it good to know that I can be strong darling As long as you go where I go I can't complain about the pain and the heartache The tears when your kisses disguise the lies My eyes don't see And what do I need to know As long as you go where I go Wake up in the morning where the bad news can't find me Walking in the sunshine with you right behind me 'Cause lazy living sure treats me right What comes tomorrow will be gone And anywhere at all is where I belong darling As long as you go where I go I'm unaware of the cares and the sorrow The hurt that your loving can hide from me My eyes don't see And what do I need to know As long as you go where I go I used to be sure that to live meant expecting disillusions But that was just another way to cry Until I met you to confirm there was a better solution Waiting in the comfort of your eyes Bringing back the part of me that died inside so long ago
6.
Take the worst of this quirky world Roll it up in a ball Add the hair of a go-go girl Turn it into a dance that's called The bloody... Brain Tap Shuffle Lose your mind You'll see the oceans part you'll think your goin' blind You can talk about your daily grind While she'll dish out the soft shoe If makin' money doesn't suit your mind We've got something here Here for you You can sit there and suck your thumb Hear the rock and roll hum But you're just a crazy wall flower 'Til you join all your friends on the floor And do the... Brain Tap Shuffle Lose your mind You'll see the oceans part you'll think your goin' blind Take your clothes off and start to shake Shake rattle and roll Watch the walls and the ceiling quake Let it move your body and soul And do the... Brain Tap Shuffle Lose your mind You'll see the oceans part you'll think your goin' blind.
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9.
The true story of “TRANS ISLAND PLAYGROUND” There was this one week in late 1993 when I would constantly wake up in the morning thinking about mixes of songs I had completed and how cool it would be if I could just somehow change the levels and placement of a few instruments without having to re- mix each entire piece from scratch. If I could only go back in time and make some fine adjustments... But how? I kept dreaming. Strangely enough toward the end of this week my musical cohort Nick DiMauro and I were introduced to computer genius and soon to be White Noize manager Bob Ball. Bob besides building elaborate computer systems, spent many sleepless days and nights putting noisy, badly mastered CDs on to his hard drive and cleaning them up via a three dimensional visual digital frequency analysis program. He was able to see where the offending noise or bad eq was and reeq it or filter it out leaving the rest of the mix untouched. This procedure is fairly common place in t o d a y ’s re-mastering industry, however...Bob also painstakingly moved or removed parts from finished 2 track mixes to suit his musical fancy. It took him hours to isolate certain instruments in a mix and manipulate them in the stereo field. The results were fairly spectacular. Parts you never heard before suddenly stand out and the sound stage is noticeably bigger. There is also a clarity and freshness brought to the mix which was lacking in the original. In a word “awesome”. The artist or the record company probably doesn’t have a copy that sounds as good! Anyway, Nick and I were to say the least, extremely impressed. Shortly after listening to Bob’s audio magic, Nick tried to use a program we had sitting on our hard drive that apparently allowed us to do the same thing. WRONG! It didn’t really work or maybe our computer couldn’t handle it. Whatever, a week passed by. Bob’s remastering technique is swimming in my mind 24/7. God, I wish I had the tools and know how to re-master on that capacity. In my depression, I pick myself up and head out to a record shop. Not looking for anything in particular I just happen to come across an import CD containing only the bass, drums and vocals on TRANS ISLAND SKYWAY, a tune recorded on Donald Fagen’s album K a m a k i r i a d. Apparently Mr. Fagen liked this stripped down mix combination and released it in all it’s naked glory. Suddenly, the joke bulb lit up. I bought the disc,rushed back to the studio, dumped Fagen’s song into our computer and began to re-orchestrate and re-edit it. Too much fun. A couple of days later I drove over to Nick’s house to pick him up for a recording session we booked. As soon as he got in the car and sat down I popped in a cassette of Fagen’s tune with my new arrangement. I told him that I did a little experimenting with the cheap digital filter program in our computer. “It sort of worked”, I said in a slightly disappointed voice. As soon as the first chord changes came on, Nick listened intensely. Every couple of measures he’d turn his head and stare at me like I’m some sort of possessed computer engineering whiz. He hears all these obvious Tabacco ideas emerging in this tune and practically none of the original parts Fagen recorded. (Para-phrasing Nick): “This is a far better job than anything Bob played us.” “Holy shit, it’s amazing.” “I can’t hear the original keyboard parts but Fagen’s voice still sounds perfect!” “What the fuck?” “Jesus!” “This is really incred...”etc. I let this joke play on for a bit, while I soaked up the accolades of my apparent brilliance. Eventually I broke in to a serious laughing spasm and I had no choice but to tell him the god awful truth. Nick breathed a sigh of relief, gave me a smirk and chuckled. YES! This was probably the most successful joke I ever played on a n y b o d y, and considering Nick has pulled a few heavy jokes on me, it felt pretty damn good. Naturally, I had to milk it one more time. I thought of the perfect guy - another big Fagen fan. Nick’s brother Gian. Later that day I asked Gian (who has never played a joke on me), to come down to the studio. In a more refined matter, I went through the whole digital filter spiel and played the new Fagen. This time I held back the the truth a bit longer than I did with Nick and the results were a little different. Gian and I are no longer on speaking terms and I’m noticing fewer and fewer of my Steely Dan CDs in my CD rack. - JT/1994
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about

With the exception of "Rikki Don't Lose That Number", "Through With Buzz", and "FM", this is a small collection of Becker and Fagen songs that were never released on any official Steely Dan album. Covering them was a labor of love.

credits

released March 3, 2019

JT : Lead vocals, Guitar, Keyboards, Drums, Bass, Engineering
Anthony Pomes : Electric guitar on The Second Arrangement
Susan DeVita : Back ups on The Second Arrangement
Jim Dexter : Guitar on Brain Tap Shuffle
Nigey Lennon : Vocal on Brain Tap Shuffle
Meryl Mathews : Keyboards on "Rikki '95, Rikki Lee vocals
Gerry Palisi : Guitar on "Rikki '95
Joe Gioglio : Electric guitar on "Come Back Baby"
Trans Island Playground : Music © 1993 by Donald Fagen

Songs 1,2,4,7,8 - Recorded and Mixed at Suburban Hermit Studios II, Stony Brook, NY

Songs 3.5.6.9 - Recorded and Mixed at Sonic Underground Studios, Stony Brook, NY

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John Tabacco Stony Brook, New York

John Tabacco is a composer, singer-songwriter, producer, recording engineer, and visual artist.

Like an unfolding musical diary / puzzle, Tabacco’s music and art are constantly being re-worked, juxtaposed and intertwined.

For more info : www.johntabacco.net
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