Ted Quinn | Help Wanted

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Folk: Political Rock: Psychedelic Moods: Type: Lo-Fi
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Help Wanted

by Ted Quinn

city boy observes a fragile world from an undisclosed location in the mojave desert.
Genre: Folk: Political
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. La Porte, Indiana
7:52 album only
2. Death of Cool
7:03 album only
3. Tar Beach
3:49 album only
4. 29 Palms
3:28 album only
5. Don't/Shoot
4:40 album only
6. Pride of Man
5:15 album only
7. Billions & Billions
7:27 album only
8. Apocalypse No (As A Matter of Policy; The Mighty Cubellis;Stones
5:17 album only
9. If U Do
4:15 album only
10. Sky Cathedral (Apologies to Louise Nevelson)
2:45 album only
11. Dave's Song (If That's What You Wanted)
5:36 album only
12. Orange Sunshine
5:11 album only
13. Tibetan Bells Bizeau
4:42 album only


Album Notes
ted quinn is a singer, songwriter and cultural activist in joshua tree, california.

recorded entirely in analog at the rancho de la luna studio in joshua tree, in which quinn is a partner, 'help wanted' looks at the state of love and war at
the turn of the millenium with healthy trepidation and, ultimately, hard-won faith. challeging the super power status of his native america, quinn starts
with a minimalist, dream-laced meditation - with musique concrete production by tony mason - on his home town, 'la porte, indiana,' his family's move to california and the resulting change in course of a young life.
declaring the 'death of cool,' quinn employs a rich, spector-esque wall of sound and gentle singing style to denounce the cruelty of modern society, while keeping an eye out for a sign of redemption.
fred drake recorded and mixed 'tar beach' as per quinn's wishes to make it sound like a motown ballad played over a transistor radio, which has been left out on the beach overnight, from which the battery acid has mixed with salt water.
'29 palms' was written for a marine widow in the small town near joshua tree, home of the world's largest military base. the tell-tale signs of impending war include the sound of helicopters moving out, as young wives are left behind to shop and wait.
'don't/shoot' (or 'don't let nothing shoot you down') was recorded with bill bizeau on a sunday afternoon in the spring. had it been recorded on a saturday night, it would have sounded completely different.
hamilton camp's classic anti-war song, 'pride of man,' was an fm hit for quicksilver messenger service in the vietnam era. the lyrics refer to 'babylon, that mighty city,' but could easily have said washington, instead.
written on fourth of july, 2001, 'billions & billions' is not a post-9/11 song. it has more to do with a dubiously won election and it's aftermath. it contains the first known rhyming of oprah and deepak chopra. quinn performed the song as part of the lysistrata international day of theatre against war in iraq at the wilshire ebell in los angeles.
'apocalypse no' is one of two songs for the mad prophet of the street, dave, who prayed for the marine convoys driving by, even as he fought visions of airpalnes crashing into skyscrapers, years befor it actually happened. tony mason wrote the extremely catchy hook and jeremy gilien provided the post-techno keyboards. fred drake plays the drums and elia arce is heard laughing at the very end.
'if u do' is a song of the riddle of love and impending loss. if you listen closely, you can hear the object of quinn's affections making a quick run for it.
okay, 'sky cathedral' is post-9/11. it's title comes from a piece of art by louise nevelson, which was destroyed in the world trade center. it had been made the year of quinn's birth (in la porte, indiana) and, coincidentally, the year of miles davis' 'birth of cool.' the song draws a parallel between the sculpture and the giant buddhas destroyed in afghanistan.
'dave's song (if that's what you wanted)' was written after the suicide of the mad prophet of 'apocalypse no (the mighty cubellis).'
'orange sunshine' is a song quinn woke up to on what would have been fred drake's birthday, had he not flown out of his body the previous spring. it was as if drake was telling quinn which chords to play, which words to sing. the title refers to the glowing light of sunrise pouring in through orange colored curtains and not necessarily to a favorite past-time quinn and drake shared in the high desert.
when billy was mixing 'orange sunshine,' he let the feedback reverberate for several minutes, bringing to mind the singing of tibetan bowls.
this album also contains sounds of doors opening, birds singing, peace marches and tv newscasts.
67 beautiful minutes of love and loss, despair and redemption.



to write a review

Shanghai Brown

Help Wanted proves Cool isn't dead after all...
Many of us believed it may have been the death of cool when John Lennon was taken from us. Those of us who hung on after that mournful day watched cool go stoically to meet its maker through so many assaults, including the music industry's soulless corporate meatgrinder. From the trivializing of the songwriter through aural special effects, bringing music to the shallow end of the pool (with Hollywood's movies), to the rise of Clear Channel's music fascism and the ever-endless hype of commercial musik, cool could not be found.
But somehow, a whisper of Lennon's soul has blown on the dusty desert wind into the town of Joshua Tree, and it has taken up quiet, cool root in Quinn's soul. This CD is an excellent example of Quinn's far-reaching talent, extending out with subtlety, love and hope through all that obstructs - to find what really matters. Help Wanted connects and provokes, is deep and strong, yet vulnerable, it has soul, and it, like Ted Quinn, is quite cool.
A rare delight.

allison green

seductive mellifluous undulating music for contemplating the cosmos
help wanted washes over me like waves, undulating, inviting, seductive. tar beach ... what an amazing song. they all are. delivered mellifluously & gently, this music puts me in a groovy tranquil place. peace out.

Shawn Mafia

Compact Discs, million's upon billions, stacked so high they'll pop a hole in the good Lord's roof! A major traffic jam of artists, bands, singer/songwriters, performers, and musicians has erupted. Which direction do we go, what car to do we hitch a ride from, which exit takes us to the promised land? "This is a time of leaving, brother/a time of no warning each other/this must be the death of cool."
So sings Ted Quinn on his CD effort entitled Help Wanted. And why should you or I care? What is the point of laying down another 15 bucks of our hard earned jack just on the off chance that the answer as well as the musical question will come roaring out of the speakers when this finally makes it's way into your CD player? Popular music is so saturated, colorless, and limp that the element of "taking a chance on music" has been murdered. No, I'll one up that notion, not just murdered, but reduced to something even more deadly, those two tranquilized words ... "who cares!" Thus, all the danger and excitement is gone, the chance taking, the triumph and defeat, the possibility that the music and lyrics are so deeply offbeat in there profundity that they might actually change your life, or at least open your mind and ears up to it. This, brothers and sisters, must be the death of cool.
And now for the resurrection. Ted Quinns, Help Wanted, is 13 songs of introspective, social, and political protest. Soft lullaby, acoustically infectious tunes that find a Dylan influence walking around inside them, chatting with John Lennon over happy hour cocktails, discussing the latest war and the ever enduring melody of forever as the Tibetan bells chime in the desert breeze.
One also finds more up tempo rockers that Quinn crones a barrage of poetic musings and strong well traveled philosophies that he seemingly pulls from that old worn trunk this vagabond earth wander, that now calls the Mojave desert home, has carried around with him for years. Like that cholla cactus that is always getting stuck in your socks, the songs begin to stick to your soul and, unlike the cactus, you refuse to get the pillars out of the tool box to pull them out!
Tracks like Death of Cool, Tar Beach, Sky Cathedral, Dave's Song, and Orange Sunshine highlight a diverse well of ideas and emotion that can only be called "original" and deeply elevating. They have staying power. They risk themselves in sleeping and in waking. They are worth that ever illusive "chance."
The one track that really sticks it's thumb out on the highway of life is If U Do. This little gem will someday make Quinn a teenage heart throb if not a major player in the singer/sonwriter genre. The first moments of background noise and movement draw the listener close. The initial droning of the chord progression, that insues, brings on and evokes that mood of edgy, uncertain elements in love and potential loss. The music begins to embrace you. The song is delicate yet street tough. A lament and a bursting joy. His lover must leave and only then does he discover the depth of his feeling. The chorus, in it's undeniable "sing a long," catchiness, screams for her not to go, or at least, not to go far. This gem is not only worth the cab fare, it's worth the ride.
"With my limited ability on this guitar/I'm going to try to reach you where ever you are." And reach he does. This is worth the gamble and the coin. Ted Quinn plays with fire and doesn't care if he gets burned. Come rediscover solid song writing, poetic verse, and a willingness to run for your life across the shaky rope bridge burning down, like a lit firecracker wick, behind you.

Adrianna O'Connor

I am 7 years old and I love your CD!
To Ted,

I like #9(IF YOU DO) the best. I like your music and the sound of your voice. I like to sing a long with it. I think everyone should buy this CD. You did a wonderful job! I'll see you sometime again.



greg white

A deliciously layered musical feast for the ears.
This music is made crafted on multiple levels, it's subtleties rewarding the listener with ongoing discoveries with each listening. It's a deliciously layered musical feast.
Maybe it's desert style, but I can't think of many other artists who make music with so much depth...
maybe some beatles or pink floyd...Ted's sensitivities to social issues are profound and his lyrics true poetry. Yum.