The Album: Best Friends

Jonathan Hoffman's debut album, "Guess I'll Have to Write My Own," (also available on www.cdbaby.com), was so successful, it "went balsa," as they say in the trade. Undaunted, Jonathan Hoffman returns with eleven new songs on his second CD, "Best Friends." His award-winning songwriting on the first CD brought good news and bad news. The good news is that his song, Heartbreak Hotel (no, not that Heartbreak Hotel), won second prize in the secular folk/country category (sixth place overall) in the 2001 GGM Music Contest. His song "Our Chaperone," featured on "Best Friends," just won a similar award. It was the top finisher in the secular folk/country category, and twelfth overall in the 2002 GGM Music Contest. The bad news is that Hoffman has yet to meet a single person who has ever heard of the GGM Music Contest.

Hoffman wrote all the music and lyrics in "Best Friends," except for the parts he took from other writers. He purloined the melody of Take Me Out to the Ballgame for the opening to his song, The Sox Finally Win the Series. Intellectual property lawyers standing in line to sue will be disappointed to learn that Take Me Out to the Ballgame is now in the public domain. However, these same lawyers will be pleased to discover their own feature role in the lyrics of another tune on this CD, Steal This Song, his tribute to music wannabes who simply aspire to have their songs considered worthy of being stolen on Morpheus, Audiogalaxy or any of the other Napster clones.

Many of the same excellent backup musicians return from Hoffman's first CD, except that the violin and piano on the first album have been replaced with Jim Brady's mandolin, Paul Connor's dobro, and some other outstanding guitar work by Jon Lindahl and Greg Roberts. These fine musicians do their best to protect the innocent public from Hoffman's voice and acoustic guitar work.

Like Hoffman's first CD, this one features songs about family and friends (Best Friends; Sirota, It Must Be Love; Miss South Eugene); satirical work about the music business (The Singer-Songwriter Formerly Known as Me; Steal This Song); and plaintive commentary about the failings of his baby boomer generation (Aftermath). But this second CD takes off in several new directions as well. It features his satirical and unrepentant response to I'm a Woman (I'm a Man); his mocking paean to the Fenway Faithful (The Sox Finally Win the Series); and even songs about his adopted shelter dog (Our Chaperone; Blue Yellow Lab). The last of these even features some blues wailing by Watson, the shelter dog himself.

In addition to the eleven songs listed on Best Friends, the CD contains enhanced features for fans of the Oregon Ducks. Inserting the CD in a CD-ROM drive on a personal computer gives the listener the option of either listening to the eleven songs and reading the lyrics, or else hearing a twelfth bonus track, It's a Great Day to Be a Duck, accompanied by a slide show of Hoffman and other Delirious Duck fans celebrating the most successful season in Oregon sports history. USC, UCLA, Washington, and Oregon State fans may choose not to avail themselves of this option. Dweeb Ducks can even copy the song onto their hard drives and, if they incorporate herein by this reference thereto the WARNING to BEWARE of the aforementioned lawyers as aforesaid, and notwithstanding the provisions of 18 United States Code Annotated Section 2319, can burn the Duck song onto a CD in order to have access to Duck Music in their Duckmobiles.

No animals were harmed during the making of this CD. Whether any will be harmed by listening to it is a more complex subject requiring further study.

To read song lyrics from this album - click here


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