Pull All The Plugs

One instrument and one voice recorded live in the studio; an autumnal soundtrack for extraordinary people longing to be unbound.

Pull All The Plugs is exactly what the title says, an acoustic album. Just guitar and voice (side one) and piano and voice (side two), continuing with the concept of album sides as complete thoughts like I did with Mono Is King! The songs are about extraordinary characters that could soar if not for a certain lack. I ran the gamut from hopeless to hopeful. The lyrics foreshadowed events of my life more than they reflected them, which still chills me when I listen to this record, since I know how the story ended.

I pay homage to my home of New Jersey on this album with "Mother Leeds", my retelling of the legends of the Jersey Devil and the way they are visited upon a character with nothing left to lose. This album also features "Ordinary People," which always felt like a songwriting triumph for me, both in message and structure.

I remember finishing the editing of side two on a late autumn afternoon. I’d been working alone for hours and daylight was fading. Whenever I edited quarter-inch master tape, I always listened on headphones so I could hear the cue points. I rolled the tape back to listen to the whole side for the first time. I lay back, closed my eyes and disappeared into side two playing in my head. Before it was over, I was sitting up and looking nervously over both shoulders. I knew I was alone, but for some reason, I had to make sure that no one was creeping behind me, waiting to take this wonderful thing away from me. Was this music really mine? Soon, the leader tape flicked around and around and the machine stopped. I let out a deep breath. I had captured it.

Some electric ensemble versions of these songs exist, but they don’t capture the same passion or that absolutely perfect autumn day when we took the picture for the cover.

Released February 14, 2000

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