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The Songs of Hello Brooklyn: Different Time, Different Place

Different Time, Different Place

Michael J. Puccio – Composer, Vocalist, Producer, Guitar

This was a lost song. I had started it and then put it down. I probably would never have finished it as I lost interest in it. Nancy saw the lyrics and was like what’s this? I told her I did not think it was very good. I had just the first verse done and Nan liked that it told a story; she really encouraged me to finish it. The lyrics folded around between verse one and verse three. I changed the pronouns and the story becomes circular.

I originally wanted to make this an ASL track – all the musicians would play my fave wargame Advanced Squad leader. Unfortunately, only Joe Leone and John Merrit could commit. Joe had not played in over 40 years but nailed his part in a few takes. He enjoyed the session. John travel the farthest to play on the session; over five hours. He did want to make the song a bit reggae…and I was like what? It was too radical from what I originally envisioned so no. Good try Johnny.

The recording was straightforward. Its musically a simple song. We played it live in December 2018 at a benefit show. That live version is different from the studio one as the song was not yet finished being recorded. Gary did add a little fill lead live when I sang “In a different time…in a different place…” which I played on the recorded version. Another late addition in the studio was the sweeping “ahhhhhhs” I had Dori add. We were going to put guitar leads in there and some had been recorded previously by John. After hearing Dori sing – and she can sing ladies and gentlemen – I said through some “aaaahs” in those gaps please. One take into it we all knew we had something very cool, mainly because Dori got so into it and held nothing back.

Joe Pisano –Assistant Junior Producer

As I recall, Pooch invited some of his war game buddies to play on this song. Joe Loece laid down a smooth rhythm guitar using Pooch’s Sunburst Telecaster. Apparently, he hadn’t played in quite some time, but he sounded great! John Merritt came down from upstate New York to play lead guitar on a Saturday afternoon in June of 2018. Pooch had asked coworker Scott Kletzkin to lay down an original bass line which added a steady groove to the song. These recordings were all done in 2018 and then we did a live version in a December benefit that year in which I played tambourine and sang background vocals.

In 2019, Pooch asked the daughter of a friend, I believe, Dori to sing background vocals. What a beautiful voice she has and did an incredible job!"

Nancy Levinson – Percussion, Production Assistant

Well, I love that Mike gives me credit for digging the lyrics and wanting him to finish the song, but I can’t imagine him not finishing it! It reminded me right away of a “Taxi” type song about two lovers reflecting on their relationship and seeing that it just isn’t working because they are in two different places. I get chills thinking about it now! I love the way he soulfully reflects on not only men and women and ‘affairs of the heart’ in all his songs put the past and present and how it affects him. It’s a very profound song in so many ways and so touching. When Dori came in to do the ‘ahh’s at first I wasn’t sure I liked it. I really liked it best with Mike just singing himself because I love all his songs when he sings them by himself because it seems more personal - but then it started to really grow on me and I see now how the ‘ahhs’ add more meaning and feeling to the song, for certain. Now it’s become this beautiful tune about an emotional journey of love and growth and the honest and true reality of how things don’t always work out in ‘affairs of the heart’.

I am extremely proud of this and all the songs Mike wrote on the album.


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