Some songs are created from a simple riff, a lyric, or a group of chords. However, my favorite songs are the ones that come out of a spontaneous jam. There really is nothing more extraordinary than the ability of a group of musicians to all be on the same page, allowing them to work out what may have been a completed song in a single jam session. This is the case with this week’s Flashback Friday.

It was now 1991, and I had moved to Hacienda Heights, California, after my most recent band attempt failed. Fable, a band I had formed, could not find the success I had hoped. Despite this, the band created a number of pretty interesting tunes, but we weren’t able to keep the fire burning. So we decided to end the project on good terms, leaving a musical void in my life.

With no official projects, I spent most of my time writing more songs and trying to teach myself to sing. Then everything changed one fateful night while watching my favorite cable access TV show, Hollywood Showcase for Bands.

My first band, New Day, and I had competed on the show the previous year and had somehow managed to make it all the way to the show’s top ten a year later. These final ten bands would compete in a ‘battle of the bands,’ with the winning band taking home over $12,000 in cash and prizes. Unfortunately, New Day no longer existed by this time, and Fable had already seen its demise. As I watched the show, I laughed out loud at all the irony, with all the work that had been done to get the band on the show, and now there was no band to compete in the showcase.

It wasn’t until the following day that I had an idea. If I didn’t have a band to compete in this showcase, why not put one together again? I called Dave, Rob, and Xavier, and they all agreed to be the ‘New’ New Day.

The reunion was fantastic at first, and it resulted in a number of new tunes. One was the song ‘Winter,’ which was created in a single take.

We had all gotten together at my place (now in Claremont, California) for our first rehearsal and a bit of a reunion. Once we finished working on some of the old tunes, we felt pretty accomplished. After the rehearsal, Rob left, and Dave, X, and I continued to jam. Dave was messing around with sounds on his effects unit and found one patch that ignited instant inspiration.

Dave would give the song some life with his cool guitar licks. The song had a very 90125 Yes sound. Xavier began playing some pretty cool drum parts, and I would layer some warm keyboard pads. The song just fell together and would eventually be completed by the whole band and moved into our updated setlist.

Unfortunately, for the ‘New’ New Day, the fire would not last for long. After only two performances as the “New Band,” we would again part ways before the showcase’s finale. Personality and creative differences would be the band’s demise. But we did manage to create a few cool tunes, and one of those is today’s Flashback Friday. So, I present to you New Day’s song “Winter.”

The tracks below include the first original rough take of the song ‘Winter.’ The other track is an additional take on the song. The last track is the reunion of Dave, Rob X, and Ed. Also included is my 1996 re-imagined studio version of the song.

  1. Reunion Talk New Day II 0:38
  2. Jam One New Day II 9:40
  3. Jam Two New Day II 4:56
  4. Winter Reimagined Ed Melendez 5:30

Flashback Fridays

Stepping Back In Time Revisiting Lost And Forgotten Projects

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