RODEO is the first song that I ever wrote with alternate tunings. My husband Eric, who is a drummer and played on five songs on the EP, plays a little guitar. So he was messing around, inspired by the movie, “The Descendents” (which we both loved and love Hawaii and its music) and wrote this beautiful instrumental on his guitar in G tuning. He said: “Hey Evie, do you wanna play this?” I loved the tune, wanted to learn it, picked up his guitar and he showed me. Then I was messing around… it’s like the elephants going around in a circle and one just veers off… and this song started to happen. I loved it and out of nowhere the first line of the song came out: “Take a chance, Ride in life’s big rodeo”. I said, “Wow, what is that?” It came out pretty quickly. I can really blame it on my husband Eric. If he hadn’t been fooling around with this alternate tuning, the song may never have happened.

BUT IT DID is a song that’s been sitting inside me for a long time. Its sentiment is something that I’ve always wanted to express, but it just never happened – until it happened. It’s pretty universal. We all have relationships, and we’ve all had our hearts broken in a relationship that we thought was “it”. “Oh this is the one, this is really love”… and then it doesn’t work. That’s something that happened to me, it isn’t unique. I remember thinking for a while, “If a relationship like that doesn’t work, what can ever work?” Then it turns out that life has a way of playing itself out and I wound up meeting the love of my life. So it hit me – the idea that I thought that love didn’t work out… but it did – because I was really meant to be with somebody else. That whole idea applies to other things in life… that we’re on a path and we’re frustrated cause something doesn’t happen, but in the big picture we don’t realize that’s not where we’re supposed to be – only we can’t see it at the time.

FULL DOSE OF LOVE is the only song that’s a co-write. I wrote it with a good friend, Scott Hackwith. We had gotten together to write some songs. One of the things that occurs when people collaborate is we might start literally from scratch and an idea will materialize. Or one or the other person will say: “I have this little thing that I’m kind of messing around with… What do you think of this? Does it resonate with you in any way?” Scott had an idea for the chords that make up the verse. He said: “I’ve kind of been noodling around with it a while…” I think he was humming a different melody; but mainly he had these chords for a verse. As soon as I heard it I went: “Oh I love it, can you give me that? Something’s happening, I can feel it bubbling.” So I took it home, started playing this fluttery, soul guitar figure and wrote the melody and the lyrics for the verse chords. Scott loved it, he had had an idea for the chorus, but after the verse was written, we both knew it should be something else. We talked over a few things and then it just came together.

With WITHOUT YOU I received an e-mail from an artist who lives in Holland. He’s a popular guy there who does a lot of session work. He wrote that he was prepping to co-produce an album for an actress, but he assured me, music is her first love. Would I want to write a song for her? That’s all he said. I didn’t know who she was, had no idea what she sounded like or even what she looked like. I immediately jumped in picking up my guitar and the song instantly started. “Oh okay”, I said to myself, “let’s see where this goes.” In the end it took a couple of months, went in a whole different direction, so I never really gave the song to her. But I wound up getting a song that I absolutely love, came from my heart, and after it was done I realized that it really truly is a love song that never uses the word. I love that.

LIKE A ROCK is a blues-rock song that’s actually from the early 2000’s. It’s just something that I fooled around with at the time and liked because though it’s blues-rock, it isn’t traditionally any of those things. It is on the surface, but it doesn’t necessarily follow any specific rules. I didn’t purposely conceive it like that; it’s just the way the song came together. Different chords, 7 guitar parts, an atypical ending with a drum part and clap outro. Eric came up with the drum part and Steve Refling added the handclaps. Steve, who got involved in the latter phase of putting it all together and mixed the record, had a couple of suggestions about what to do with lyrics as I had all these different lyrics for it. So it kind of evolved in the studio from the thing that I had been messing around with a few years ago. I like it is because it’s a fun song to do and it’s fun to play.

SHINE FOR ME came to me in an otherworldly and eerily profound way. While Paul McCartney reputedly dreamt “Yesterday”, when I’ve written songs while within a dream, like a pin to a bubble, they’re gone when I wake up. This was definitely a song that I channeled. Don’t laugh. Because I sat down to write with a few cogent ideas in mind, my hands went to do what I thought I was gonna play, but I felt compelled to do something else. I remember thinking to myself: “What am I doing? Why am I going away from what I intended to do?” I was just drawn to something else and while following its insistent lead, I kind of sat back: “This something else is really good. Okay, stop fighting it and see how it plays.” It was like some spirit overtook me as a vessel to get out all the music and words that I normally wouldn’t write myself. I was being taken for a frantic ride, couldn’t stop or take a break, cause we had a connection and I had to let this all come through. Once it was done, it was as if this soul from whence this song came whispered: “Okay, I’ll leave it for you to tidy up.” I stepped back from the canvas… This song is special for me because of the way it came, what it means and has to impart. It’s also the title of the EP since it felt like an umbrella under which not only the song could exist, but also the other songs could occupy that space and represent what I wanted to say.