Treasures From The Demo Safe

I’m happy to announce my new project for this year called “Treasures from the Demo Safe.” I write a lot of songs. Whenever I have time, I demo these songs in my studio. Most of the time these recordings are very simple. Just one or two guitars and a vocal. I frequently go back to these recordings to pitch songs to people. In the process, I always come across ones I have almost forgotten or ones that have very little commercial appeal, but that I really like. I have hundreds of these recordings and have decided to digitally release two of them every month for a year, maybe longer

I am aware that the title “Treasures from the Demo Safe” may come off as somewhat presumptuous. My intention is not to declare my songs as treasures of the world, rather they are treasures to me. I remember when I wrote them, the joy that came from writing with my friends, the joy of undisturbed hours in the studio, recording by myself - the joy of creating.

I like the somewhat off-handed quality of these performances because the recordings were originally not intended to be released, so there was no pressure to make something great or unusual, and the music is better off for that. Not everything is perfectly in tune or time, there might be a little glitch here or there, I might have had to move the lyric sheet while recording or move because my foot fell asleep. My favorite music was recorded like that, all the great country and blues music from the 1920s and 1930s.

A lot of these songs here live in that time, musically and lyrically.

The Land Of Tomorrow

Charley Stefl & Thomm Jutz

Charley Stefl and I have been writing songs together for about twenty years now. Charley co-wrote one of my all-time favorite country songs “The Fool,” a big hit for Lee Ann Womack.

He is a scholar of Byzantine history and art, a very smart and well-read man, an excellent guy to have a beer with, and one of my oldest friends in Nashville.

We

Charley Stefl and I have been writing songs together for about twenty years now. Charley co-wrote one of my all-time favorite country songs “The Fool,” a big hit for Lee Ann Womack.

He is a scholar of Byzantine history and art, a very smart and well-read man, an excellent guy to have a beer with, and one of my oldest friends in Nashville.

We co-wrote some songs with the late great Nanci Griffith that she ended up recording, and we got a bunch of Bluegrass cuts together. Two went to number one, if I remember correctly.

We still get together to write a couple of times a month - and it’s always good and easy.

This is another song about traveling, and arriving - if only for a moment.

I had the guitar lick for a while and had never used it in a song.

We wrote the rest in less than an hour, no need to get in the way when the flow is right.

Written by Charley Stefl (Charley Stefl Music, SESAC admin by Bluewater Music) & Thomm Jutz (Thomm Songs, SESAC admin by Bluewater Music

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I Love It Even More

Charley Stefl & Thomm Jutz

Another song co-written with Charley Stefl.

This song pays homage to the songs that make our world turn. Like the ones that Bobby Bare played on a German TV show in October 1981, with an 11-year-old version of myself watching.

Those songs lit a fire in my soul - and they still do.

I played a Martin 0000-18 guitar (with sinker mahogany back and

Another song co-written with Charley Stefl.

This song pays homage to the songs that make our world turn. Like the ones that Bobby Bare played on a German TV show in October 1981, with an 11-year-old version of myself watching.

Those songs lit a fire in my soul - and they still do.

I played a Martin 0000-18 guitar (with sinker mahogany back and sides) on this song.

It was Peter Cooper’s guitar. He bought it after we finished working on Bill Anderson’s audio book.

A note from Bill is still in the case. Playing his guitar is a soothing way for me to remember Pete. The vocals were recorded with an AEA R44 microphone through an Audioscape Golden 58 mic pre.

The guitar was recorded with an AEA R84 through an AEA RPQ mic-pre.

Written by Charley Stefl (Charley Stefl Music, SESAC admin by Bluewater Music) & Thomm Jutz (Thomm Songs, SESAC admin by Bluewater Music

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Hobo Highway

Tim Stafford & Thomm Jutz

Hobo Highway

I had read The Cold Millions by Jess Walter and was intrigued by some of the hobo culture of the early 20th century described in the book. Tim and I got into some old Hobo terminology and wrote this song around it.

written by: Tim Stafford (Daniel House Music, BMI) & Thomm Jutz (Thomm Songs, SESAC admin. by Bluewater Music) Thomm

Hobo Highway

I had read The Cold Millions by Jess Walter and was intrigued by some of the hobo culture of the early 20th century described in the book. Tim and I got into some old Hobo terminology and wrote this song around it.

written by: Tim Stafford (Daniel House Music, BMI) & Thomm Jutz (Thomm Songs, SESAC admin. by Bluewater Music) Thomm Jutz; guitars and vocals

Recorded and mixed by Thomm Jutz at TJTunes, Nashville/TN mastered by Alex McCollough at True East Mastering, Nashville/TN

I recorded this song playing and singing at the same time.

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The Last Spike

Tim Stafford & Thomm Jutz

Tim and I heard a friend mention a place where the “last spike” on the Trans-Canadian railroad had been driven. We immediately knew that we were going to write a song of that title. The human effort it took to build the North American railroads is one of the great marvels of modern time. It came with great sacrifice from workers of all

Tim and I heard a friend mention a place where the “last spike” on the Trans-Canadian railroad had been driven. We immediately knew that we were going to write a song of that title. The human effort it took to build the North American railroads is one of the great marvels of modern time. It came with great sacrifice from workers of all ethnicities. My favorite line in this song is “An old guitar for comfort and tobacco in a pipe.” It’s so simple, yet there’s something very satisfying about singing these words.

written by:

Tim Stafford (Daniel House Music, BMI) & Thomm Jutz (Thomm Songs, SESAC admin. by Bluewater Music)

Thomm Jutz; guitars and vocals

recorded and mixed by Thomm Jutz at TJTunes, Nashville/TN mastered by Alex McCollough at True East Mastering, Nashville/TN

The guitar on the left is a 1930 Gibson L-0, the one on the right is a 1949 Epiphone Broadway. The Gibson was recorded with an AEA R84 ribbon mic and a Brauner Phantom C condenser mic. The Epiphone was recorded with the R84. Vocals were recorded with the R84 as well. The Epiphone came from Alex McCollough’s collection. He let me borrow it for a couple of weeks, and after several months I finally managed to talk him into selling it to me.

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