#4 You Could Do Anything (“Coming Home” track by track)

I’m currently (somewhat belatedly) showcasing each track from my latest album Coming Home in a “behind the song” blog series. I hope some listeners find it interesting or helpful. “You Could Do Anything” is the fourth track. For convenience, the lyrics and YouTube & Spotify streams are at the bottom of this post.


I actually finished this song a year or more before I released it. It was another one that either didn’t fit into the theme of a release, or I just wasn’t sure how much I liked it. Honestly, I liked the lyrics because they were very relevant to my life, but wasn’t sure the music was compelling. I thought it was another one of those songs that only I would appreciate because it was so idiosyncratic to me. However, I got better feedback than I expected, including from one of my worst critics, my sister, who got emotional over how relatable she found it! It turns out I can never predict how my songs will be received, no matter how much experience I get.

This was one of those songs that took a while to write because I was trying so hard to get it right. Most of the words came pretty easy, but I tweaked them from the first draft all the way up until recording. I think I’m satisfied with the final result! I suppose my favorite part is the bridge, plus the way the verses are 100% true. My dad has literally been telling me to become an author and buy him a yacht with my bestseller money since I was 8 years old, when I used to write stories for fun. I grew out of that, but unfortunately my dad never grew out of his dream for me. I guess I should just be flattered he thinks I’m that much of a world-class writer, when I think it’s pretty clear by now that I’m not, haha.

Music wise, the first melody I wrote was quite boring, so I went in and shifted notes up here and there, and I guess I’m sometimes surprised how effective those little tweaks can be. I did the same with the strumming pattern, which I tried to make slightly more varied than the Old Faithful and I think I succeeded at that, at least.

I made this one of the more “produced” tracks on this release, although I’m not sure how much any of them can really be labeled that way. I added some pretty little electric chords and riffs (which still often just sound like keys no matter what I do) along with a bit of power chords and percussion just to make my genre more confusing. Nah, just because I liked all of it.

I’m not gonna lie. I just went and listened to this track myself, and it’s pretty good! Probably one of my favorites. I might have underestimated it, as I often do with my songs…


My dad always told me to be an author
He said I’d get so rich I could buy him a yacht
But is it really easier to pen a bestseller
Than make a living wage if I give this everything I’ve got?
My mom was more patient, she’d just say…

You could do so many things
You could do anything
What do you want to do?

I always had a knack for numbers
So if it was just money
I would have been an engineer or a CPA
But it’s hard to find the space inside my mind
For those numbers
When I’m writing a song in my head every minute of the day

Everybody’s always getting at
Some different way that I should be
But I’m not here to please anyone
I’m only here for me
And the more this life disappoints
The more certainty that I seem to find
This is what I want the most, by a catastrophic landslide

You could do so many things, you could do anything
And this is such a simple thing
Might never lead to anything
But it’s all I ever wanted to do

#3 Bronze (“Coming Home” track by track)

I’m currently (somewhat belatedly) showcasing each track from my latest album Coming Home in a “behind the song” blog series. I hope some listeners find it interesting or helpful. “Bronze” is the third track. For convenience, the lyrics and YouTube & Spotify streams are at the bottom of this post.


This is one of the songs that started its life a year before its release. I had the music for the end of the song (from “Now my only goal is to sacrifice…”) first, which is rare for me. I usually have lyrical ideas first, or both at the same time. That’s because I was playing around with different types of chords I don’t normally play (cowboy chords ftw!) and seeing if I could come up with something cool. It’s one of my favorite bits of music I’ve written so far, so this song will always have a special place in my heart.

At first I didn’t have a suitable lyric. I wrote a few different dummy lyrics that I knew I wouldn’t use, because they weren’t compelling enough for me. Eventually during my lyrical improvisations, I hit upon this one that I ended up with, and I just loved it! However, that was in 2020, and no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t think of an actual song to make out of this one snippet. I didn’t even know what part of the song it should be. It didn’t really seem like a chorus or a verse, so I did eventually decide it would be the ending of song. I just didn’t know what the song would be. I tried a few different ideas, but none of them worked that well.

Finally, last summer I made myself sit down and brainstorm ideas until I found one I actually liked. I was like, “okay, ‘at least I’m not dreaming about winning the Olympics,’ maybe there’s something in there.” That’s when I came up with the bronze metaphor. I’m pretty pleased I came up with that because it really solidified the original idea I came up with, and completed the idea I wanted to express.

I kept this one acoustic because, as with many of my songs, it was a simple idea calling for a simple song. It’s not that I don’t think any of these songs could be good, or even improved, with a fuller production. It’s just that my skills with arranging and producing are still developing, and there is always a chance I’ll do more harm than good. With songs that scream out for a more punk/rock treatment, I take that risk. But with simple songs, I err on the side of caution and leave it be.

This one ended up being the least favorite of a lot of my friends, family, and supporters. (My very supportive, but very honest, mother told me it was the only song on the release that she didn’t like!) That’s kind of the way things go, though. Whichever songs have the most meaningful lyrics to me, and often my favorite music too, often end up being everyone else’s least favorite! And their favorites are often my least favorite. I have come up with some theories, but to be honest I don’t know really know why that happens, and I probably never will. I don’t worry too much about it. I’ll just keep doing my best to balance what I like with what everyone else likes!

I remember the first time I realized
That anyone could play at this game
And maybe it wasn’t so hard
To achieve every one of my dreams

But I’ve come up against too many obstacles to count
And every day it just seems harder but I’ve figured out

That I can be happy with the bronze
I can be happy with so much less
I’m lucky to be in this game at all
Feeling like this song is my life purpose
I can be happy with the bronze, I can be happy with the bronze

I remember a time I thought
That every step in this journey would be fun
And it would never have to feel like work
As long as you were doing what you love

But it’s a slog just to get by
When you don’t know if you’ll ever be great
But you can still be happy
If you just accept your fate

There are feats that are nearly impossible
For a normal person like me to complete
I won’t ever win a Grammy
And I won’t ever be Paul McCartney
I will never be the best

So now my only goal is to sacrifice everything I have
Just to do what I love for a living
I know it was never gonna be easy
But at least I’m not dreaming about winning the Olympics

#2 Come Back Around (“Coming Home” track by track)

I’m currently (somewhat belatedly) showcasing each track from my latest album Coming Home in a “behind the song” blog series. I hope some listeners find it interesting or helpful. “Come Back Around” is the second track. For convenience, the lyrics and YouTube & Spotify streams are at the bottom of this post.


This is one of two songs on the album that were actually written in 2020; the rest were written over the summer/early autumn of 2021, not too long before I recorded and released it.

This one went on an interesting journey because I wrote it when I was planning a trip to London… for May 2020. Obviously, that never happened. Then, when I actually did release the song, I was days away from actually going to London. That nerve-racking trip (right when omicron hit) was a whole other story, but the point is, it was cool to finally release a song about a trip to London right before I was actually taking one. The lyrics are not explicitly about a trip to London, anyway. They are mainly about being excited for a flight, which could even be taken as a metaphorical one, I suppose.

The idea came to me on the swings. Yes, I still sometimes swing on the playground swings, at night when no one’s around. (It’s okay, everyone thinks I’m a teenager anyway.) It makes me feel like a kid again, and it lets me feel that simple excitement again, that doesn’t have to be based on something big and profound, just everyday life. Getting into that mindset and watching a plane go by made me even more excited than usual to be going back to London, my favorite place.

I immediately had the first verse and chorus lyrics as you hear them now, as well as a second verse that I was never very happy with. I did write the little two-line bridge shortly afterwards. I was happy with my original melody, but I wrote it in the same batch of songs with “Better,” and after releasing the latter, I realized the two songs’ melodies were too similar. So that was one of those songs that felt stuck, and I procrastinated and eventually set it aside.

I don’t think I realized until I finally committed to finishing it, that I was probably putting it off because of the pain of cancelling that trip and losing out on that whole flood of positive feelings I had been anticipating. It suddenly became much easier, pretty much effortless, to make the necessary tweaks when I had a new trip planned. There were no big or complicated changes I needed to make; I just had not wanted to engage with that song for a while. So I finally tweaked the melody to differentiate it a little bit more, and I rewrote the second verse lyrics so that I liked them.

Like most of my songs, I kept this one simple, but I did fill it out a little bit with electric guitar and subtle harmonies, shakers, and a little bit of drums. As usual, the percussion was virtual. Aside from the fact that the production (and some of the performance) could be a little bit more professional, this is a simple song that I’m happy with. I wrote it for a specific emotion and moment, and it did its job as a song.

I’m swinging on a swingset like a little kid
Soaring through the air
A plane goes by, my mind goes wandering
I dream of anywhere

In four short months I’ll be up there
Soaring high above the ocean
And my whole life’s up in the air
And every option’s open
I’ve waited my whole damn life to be up there
My whole damn life, for it to come back around

I’ll be walking through the streets of the city once again
Smile at everyone
I know I’m never gonna regret
A day I spent out and having fun

And someday this will be a distant memory
And I’ll have all I ever wanted in my hands

In four short months I’ll be up there
In four short months, it’s gonna come back around