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The Pica Beats “Poor Old Ra” (Influenza)

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Pica Beats

Approach Influenza as a series which serves to help give insight as to where music is born; these are the thoughts, influences and the inspirations directly from the mind of the artists. In this edition Ryan Barrett of The Pica Beats contrasts his typical approach to writing songs with that used while writing the band’s single from its latest album, Beating Back the Claws of the Cold. “Poor Old Ra,” as Barrett describes it, took form quickly as he translated the story of Ra through his own words.

On “Poor Old Ra”:

Most songs I write are inspired by the first line or two, which usually will pop out randomly while strumming on a new chord progression. “Poor Old Ra” was no different. Often, the first line that comes out is just a lyrical placeholder, throwaway lyrics that give me a direction for the melody, comprised of words that make no sense or just make me laugh and aren’t suited for a song. This was one of the luckier times when I actually liked what came out first, and the song pretty much wrote itself after that.

As is typical with most god and creation myths, the story of Ra is comprised of the themes of love, loss, desire, betrayal, aging, death, and greed. Coincidentally, these are pretty much all of the same things that everyone has always obsessed about. Even more coincidentally they are the only things I ever seem to write songs about, so I guess it was a perfect match. – Ryan Barrett