Life Happens

by Amanda West

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about

LIFE HAPPENS was produced and released in Amanda's first year of motherhood. It is a compilation EP of sorts, pulled together from various unfinished projects and recordings in a recognition of, and offering that, "life happens", and sometimes we must simply give what we have.

The five tracks offer a beautiful cross-section of the variety of music that Amanda can create, supported by the skilled engineering of her multi-instrumentalist partner, Pete. "So Does Love" and "Anyone Could Do It Better" set a new standard for the levels of production and polish. Both "The Summer You Were Born" and "Habit" have since been made into visually and emotionally stunning videos, and "Before Electricity" offers a quirky and surprising commentary, slated also to soon become a music video.

This rich, multi-textured album has recently received updated album art featuring Amanda & Pete's son's artwork ~ and what could be more appropriate.

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FROM THE LINER NOTES...
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"Songs can be written anywhere - while washing the dishes, between gigs, folding laundry or changing diapers. But making a record takes a certain kind of time that I guess we haven't found much of in the last few years. I never expected these songs to be on an album together, but here they are, offering the vulnerability and strength of honesty: this is where we are now, this is what we have. Life happens, and here it is!"

~ with love & song, Amanda
May 2013, Felton, CA

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Heartfelt Thanks:
to all the musicians, to everyone we've met on our travels these last five years and everyone who believes in our music;
to Syd for the photos, to Shivani for above and beyond;
to baby Solas for rockin' our world;
and to You, the most wonderful listener ~
may these songs bring you connection and joy

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credits

released June 1, 2013

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AMANDA WEST vocals, harmonies & guitar
PETE SOLOMON soprano saxophone, piano, percussion, harmonies, electric appliances

BABY SOLAS fetal heartbeat & one month gurgles (track 1)
MATT BOHN upright bass (track 2)
BILLY KEMP bajo (track 2)
PETER YOUNG upright bass (track 3)
DANIEL VEE LEWIS electric bass (track 4)
MIKE SHANNON drums (track 4)

Recorded at Bear Creek Studios, Bonny Doon, CA
& Grandview Studios, Felton, CA
between the Springs of 2011 and 2013

Recorded, mixed and mastered by Pete Coates
Produced by Pete Solomon & Amanda West
All songs written by Amanda between fall 2007 and 2012

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license

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about

Amanda West California

~ thoughtful heart songs ~

Amanda West is an award winning singer-songwriter, recording artist, teacher, and mother. Not afraid of the big questions, she asks: Who are we? Why are we here? What does it mean to be human, and how can we most deeply live our temporary and precious lives?

She is currently working on new recordings. Please visit her website and sign the mailing list to stay in touch~
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Track Name: The Summer You Were Born
The summer I stayed home
I did not tend my nest
dust stayed on the shelves
projects all unfinished

The summer I stayed home
letters were unwritten
the kitchen was abandoned
and weeds grew in the garden

'Cause the summer I stayed home
there's only one thing that I did
I made a human being
I made a human being
and learned how to love him

The summer I stayed home
no one saw me on the street
I missed every festival,
parade and party

The summer I stayed home
I stepped out of the game
out of the workforce
made no money to my name

'Cause the summer I stayed home
there's only one thing that I did
I made a human being
I made a human being
and learned how to love him

The longest I ever pushed
the most I ever gave
the hardest I ever worked, ever
was the summer I stayed home!
It was the most I ever did
I made a human being
I made a human being
and learned how to love him

The summer I stayed home
felt I'd never leave again
but September always comes
and summer always ends

The summer I stayed home
the summer I stayed home
The summer you were born
The summer you were born!
Track Name: So Does Love
Oh dear heart of mine
off you go making your own way again -
ignoring all the plans we made
the lists we wrote, our conversations
But life never fits well into boxes and oh well
so much for all that!

Can I follow you?
'Cause the place you're going is not on the map
But I so long to
and it feels so good, feels so good when I do

I went to the ocean
to offer up the questions to the Great Spirit of it all
I saw the waves come rolling in
how nothing can stop them, from breaking and forming
How each wave comes from the Everything,
returns to the same thing
and so does love!

And I will follow you,
though the place we're going is not on the map
but I so long to,
and it feels so good, feels so good when I do!
What else can I do?

And this is how it goes, this is how it goes:
forming and breaking, over and over again
This is how it goes, this is how it goes
forming and breaking, breaking and forming

Each wave comes from the Everything,
returns to the same thing
and so does love
Track Name: Habit
-----------------------------------
LYRICS - "HABIT"
c. 2011 Amanda West Music
-----------------------------------

i have a bad habit
of worrying, stressing, fretting,
brow-knitting over every little thing

and i have a bad habit
of thinking i'll never no matter what
never be enough

but the birds and the bees
and the redwood trees
they've got it figured out
and they are all about today

you have a bad habit
of worrying, stressing, fretting,
brow-knitting over every little thing

and you have a bad habit
of thinking you'll never no matter what
never be enough

but the birds and the bees
and the redwood trees
they've got it figured out
'cause they are all about today

so let's start a new habit
of waking, walking, breathing
singing thank you for everything

and let's start a new habit
of knowing we are already
already enough

'cause the problem is not
those little things
and the problem is not
who we are
it's just that to break a habit
is hard

but the birds and the bees
and the redwood trees
they've got it figured out
'cause they are all about today

yes the birds and the bees
and the redwood trees
oh they will teach us well
they've got so much to tell us today

just let them teach you well
they've got so much to tell us
today

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Track Name: Anyone Could Do It Better
Someone, anyone, could do it better
Everyone, everyone's got something to say
Why should I, why should I try to be different,
when it all sounds the same?

Oh you scratch and you pull
and you beg and you plead,
"Please, please pick me!"
"This one will be it, this one's the best!
She's gonna stand out apart from the rest.
She'll be better at it all, than anyone else."
But why? Why? Why?

When someone, anyone could do it better
Everyone, everyone's got something to say
Why should I, why should I try to be different
when it's all just a game
It's just a game!

And I hate to push and I don't like to pull
I can't stand all this capitalist bull
I'm an inch away from turning away
and going home to sing alone
I don't write songs to be better than you ~
it's just what I love to do

Someone, anyone, could do it better
Everyone, everyone's got something to say
Why should I, why should I try to be different,
'cause we are all so much the same
Track Name: Before Electricity
Once long ago all was done by hand
before electricity
now today everything's plugged in
and life moves too quickly

Oh I dream of the days before electricity

Once there were paths we would walk by foot
there were lanterns and dark starry skies
Now there's a haze and a skyscraper maze
and screens to hypnotize

Oh I dream of the days before electricity
Yes I dream of the days before electricity
Oh I dream of the days before electricity