Our current Song List

Titles that are links lead to mp3 samples. Now this is all the songs on the album, plus other. Yay!
Songs with italic titles will be on the album.

Title Characterization
Blister This is one where Otto played a snippet, and Hacksaw immediately heard a drum beat for it. One that he couldn't play yet. It's getting there.
Butch A street in an industrial neighborhood. With dogs. This has been subsumed into Nailgun
Chicago Jazz goes drinking -- In a biker bar
Count to Seven A jog through a cluttered warehouse
Click Satori in many forms. Enlightenment, that is.
Crawl Into Your Head Openness is important
Driving White line fever that started before you got in the car. Hacksaw tune.
Freedom is a Lie Free. No, that's a lie...
Get in the van Kidnapping by close personal friends. Otto tune
If I A momentary reflection turned moshable. Otto tune
Junk Drawer Hacksaw came in with a couple riffs, and by the end of one or two practices, we had this song. It's about clutter in one's life and it's reflection on you. Lyrics once again by Otto, crazy start by Jerfo.
Just Out Yesterday Based on an encounter Otto had with a person recently dumped from a closing mental institution. The spy stuff courtesy of Hacksaw
Lemon Tree Our first guitarist planted the seeds for this songs. Otto's lemon tree started leaking into the basement. Ken sang about it. Otto turned that into a song.
My Dear Some people are painful
NailgunFeeling alive often means flirting with death, who, according to Neil Gaiman, is one hot chick
Near In Me An Otto special. Intrapersonal
Oxidation We were going to name the band Rust Happy. We didn't. This is a tribute to that fact. Funk meets Fusion meets King Crimson.
Private CircusStream of consciousness story.
Serengeti WomanA Jerfo song. Cigars and foreign dignitaries
Seven TenthsSometimes, all is too much
She's Here Again One of our older songs. Bouncy and funky. About a girl scout, sort of, though not meant to be a characterization of all girl scouts.
SlatesComposed strictly on the computer with samples from all the other songs on the album. A song about getting crappy people out of your life.
SledgeA work in progress. Another one with trippy time things.
Sniffa Dog If you picture a happy dog, you'll have some of the feel of this song. If you imagine the happy dog with someone's arm in its mouth, even better. Lyrics by E'Beth
Something A pop song with mild neurotic episodes
The Reason Why When relationships end, sometimes they fade. This isn't one of those times.
Tango on the MoonIf you danced as hard as this song, you'd be in orbit too.
TMIAn exploration of odd times. Could be described as jazzy. Still, it seems to flow.
Tree An introspective diatribe
Two Like the end of a demolition derby.
Welcome to My World Our most danceable tune, if you like to dance in a room with marbles scattered all over the floor. This one has changed quite a bit from the last time it was played in public. It used to have section in 7 and 8. Now it it has a lot more 7's and a number of 5's.

Notes about Private Circus and song writing

Everyone in the band contributes to all the songs. One may not notice Jerfo being mentioned up above. Don't let that fool you. His contributions are manifold. Just about every bit that you might think of as sounding "progressive" a la "Yes" or "King Crimson" was thrown in by him. Also, the parts we are given we often make our own. For instance, the verse bass line in "Click" was a Hacksaw invention, but was immediately tweaked by Otto.

Another interesting fact: Most of the older songs revolve around the drums and bass. This was because they were written before Mr. Jerfo's time. It is a testement to his ability that he came up with parts for those songs with little or no direction from the other guys.

Here's how we write songs: Most practices start with a jam. We're generally a little cold, so we try and keep it simple until we are warmed up. Once in a while, the jam is highly compelling. That's one source of song ideas. Another is that someone comes up with an idea. Hacksaw often gets ideas walking around. We play around with this until everyone has a part they like, and then we try to add a second part. Often someone has a related idea at this point, due to having played the first part for so long.

As far as lyrics go, Otto is by far the biggest producer of words for this band. (Jerfo produces many for his own work. Hacksaw doesn't produce many lyrics, but does much other writing. Strange?) Mr. Otto seems to vary in how the words come out. Sometimes it's by thinking hard and sweating, sometimes they pour out.

At this point Mr. Otto comes up with the vocal melody, and sings the lyrics over the song. Once everyone understand what's going on with them, we might make suggestions about the lyrics, but far more often we talk about the arrangement. Over time, Mr, Jerfo decides if he's going to provide backing vocals to parts of the song. This varies with the difficulty of the guitar part, and the needs of the song.

Private Circus is very much a song driven band. It's unlikely you will ever hear a drum solo, and if you do, you'll hear a melody in it. It's not the flashy instruments, the slick clothing or the ritual grimaces, it's all in the music. Don't worry too much about what that means, though. We still let Mr. Jerfo do the odd solo, because they are generally good and fun. And, well, odd.

Speaking of odd, Private Circus has a number of songs in odd times, especially seven. We try very hard to avoid sounding as if we are counting beats. If it doesn't flow, we tend to drop it. Any song that requires sudden intense concentration is likely to sound somewhat constipated during those sections. That's not to say we don't go through periods where we must concentrate. On TMI, the "chorus" is in seven, but the guitars are playing in five, or sometimes five and eight. It was a numbers of practices before Hacksaw felt relaxed during that part.

The upshot of this is you might find songs a little challenging, but hopefully you won't be confused for nine minutes.

All songs are by Private Circus, except where noted. All songs are produced by Private Circus. Sometimes we'll say who drove the production or the direction of writing. That's just informational, bub.

All songs © 1999,2000,2001,2002 L.G.Dyson, J.McClelland, D.C.Todd