"Next Time Around" - Stories Behind the Song
Megan on "Next Time Around" -
"Each song has so many stories behind it, but this is a very special one for both of us. Sam wrote this song after we had a very moving experience playing a house concert for a family that have since become dear friends of ours. We learned a lot from them about how to celebrate life in the face of losing a loved one - how to sing together through that pain. "Next Time Around" is a joyous song, and like most of our songs we tried to fill it with hope.
As Sam was first writing it he asked me if I'd like to try singing lead. Singing lead vocals has not really been my focus. As a vocalist I've spent more time practicing and enjoying the craft of harmony singing. From an early age singing songs with my sister in our shared bedroom, then holding down the alto parts in my High school and college choirs, I developed a keen ear and a deep love for singing the 'other' part. But this song was a chance for me to stretch myself and try something new, with Sam's encouragement I gave it a shot.
When we recorded this song for the album a lot of attention was paid to the concept that this was a tune we could build up gradually with the arrangement. Starting with the thumping kick beat (that was my fist against the back of the bass), then the hand claps from Sam and I & Bruce and Jeff, crunchy electric guitar (again by Bruce), then layering in the tickling ivories and organ by the incomparable John R. Burr. We added instruments slowly and built to the splashy Tom Waits-y drums provided by the very talented John Hanes for the very last refrain,
'So, please don't weep when I've gone, when I've gone ...' "