December Roses (Red)

December Roses (Red) is one of my favorite Native tracks, and it shows that during our final period of writing/recording we were continuing to evolve and improve.

I can’t be all pedantic, impartial, and removed about this one. No amount of objectivity is available to me. When I hear it, it’s like a piece of my very being has been painlessly removed and made palpable.

Joyce Thomas, Dave's mother

My mother, Joyce, in Hollywood in 1950

My Mom had one song that she played on piano — Debussy’s Clair de Lune. I think of her whenever I hear this tune. It’s both the saddest and the happiest song I ever wrote.

December Roses

Love Will Leave You Mystified!!

Mystified is a song Native played a lot right before we made the recordings that would become And Then What and December Roses. It quickly became a fan favorite, and a band favorite. It’s rousing, rambunctious, has great sing-a-long harmonies, and it modulates!!! There’s nothing like a good modulation.

When I wrote it, I was writing to myself, trying to pep myself up after a very trying period where my marriage fell apart — so it’s not a diatribe against the fine institution of wedlock — just the words one says to make a friend feel better by downplaying the importance of it. Matrimony does not suck — I want to be on the record about that.

And now I am!!

With the release of December Roses I can finally rest easy, knowing that such a great song is out there, after such a long waiting period.

Why did it take so long to get it out?

Well, the whole history of these recordings is one fraught with delays, disaster, distractions, more delays, and finally — dismay.

We started to make an album in late 2000, convening at our Marmfington Farm Studio located in a top secret location everybody knew about on 26th Street, NYC. Our long-suffering soundman, John Fitzwater helmed the Producers seat and the band proceeded to enthusiastically lay down the many new songs developed since 1998’s Exhale On Spring Street.

Things went great, then things went bad.

Mat moved to California, something we knew was coming, but he and we did not want to break up, and the proof is this stellar set of recordings, surely our best.

When Mat moved away (after an epic gig at Wetlands) the rest of us continued on with completing the record, such was our love of the music.

But, Marmfington Farm was not a fully air-conditioned studio and we made the fateful decision to take a hiatus on recording for what was expected to be a long, and very hot summer.

Indeed, it was. But we scheduled a session with Mike to do his guitar leads. The day we scheduled it was September 11, 2001.

Next week, the story of the amazing journey to finishing the album continues… till then — remember,

Love will leave you —

Mystified