Track 35 Wishing Now Was Then

kc club

Recording and Mixing Dates: Recorded August 25 and 30, 2016. Mixed August 30, 2016.



Genesis: I came up with the music on December 10, 2001 and called it “Forgotten Laughter.” The jazzy chord changes and the slow tempo suggested a moody lyric but nothing came until August of 2003, when the song was retitled “Wishing Now Was Then.” I imagined a musician, actor or writer walking the back streets in the middle of the night, ruminating about missed chances, betrayals, and dead ends. I rewrote the lyrics in December 2006, and then revised the song heavily on August 25, 2016, eliminating a number of unnecessary words.

Since 2001, the arrangement of the song has moved from a slow jazz swing style to a mournful straight feel ballad with a pedal steel guitar and a string section and then back to the slow jazz style, this time with a tenor sax included. I imagined a torch singer performing this right before closing time. I can hear a bit of Tom Waits in this song but my voice is much too smooth to evoke Waits in this recording.

 Production: Acoustic Bass, Acoustic Guitar, Piano, Tenor Sax, and Drums.


Wishing Now Was Then

Sweetheart deals

Teardrop stains

Stale perfume

Flat champagne

Walking through

The back street rain

Wishing Now Was Then


I am blind

But I can see

The telltale marks

Of futility

There is little hope for me

Wishing Now Was Then


Much was promised

Or so I thought

Doubting questions were all spurned

At the time

I assumed the best

Oh but I learned


Drop the curtain

Strike the sets

No more drama in me now

I’ll depart

This worn out stage

Taking one last broken bow


Peeling off

The sugar coat

Of what I sang

What I wrote

All that’s left

Is this long blue note

Wishing Now Was Then

Copyright 2016 Fred Grittner All Rights Reserved


Track 35 Wishing Now Was Then

5 thoughts on “Track 35 Wishing Now Was Then

  1. Ah, you daredevil! Glad you chart new territory frequently this year. Makes your music all the more interesting. Will have to find time to listen again. So busy promoting my new album, with promising results, but this departure calls for more listening. Good to see you venture forth from your comfort zone, I still don´t like fade-outs, but that´s the only criticism I have to offer now. Lyrics are fantastic.


  2. Alf Storrud says:

    Well, Jan has said it all! Just Great! (And I have no problems with fade outs ) – Although there was a jazzy lilt to several earlier songs as well, (“Heavily into you” and “Five in the afternoon” comes to mind) this must be your jazziest song yet – and you pull it off with style. You even sound different on this one … a MUST for inclusion on the album … and of course: Great lyrics!


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