I wrote the song years ago in a fit of murder/mystery inspiration. My parents had bought the Clue VHS Mystery Game for the family when I was a child, and that was as much to blame for the song as anything.
I wanted to personalize it for my family and kids today, however, so I incorporated them all into the name of the fictional bumbling detective. VIRginia, LOgan, MORgan, bratTON, and my wife’s middle name, LEE. VIRLO MORTON LEE.
So, anyways, I gather the family together many moons ago and sing a rough rendition of the song for them on my acoustic. They dig it…until the climactic moment when the murderer reveals him or herself. (I’ll not spoil it for you if you haven’t heard it yet 🙂
The lyric I am speaking of goes: “It was me who killed that S.O.B.!”
Although that line barely pegs the PG rating today, much less the PG-13 boundary, it was still universally considered too risque for a Christian artist. I tried to rewrite it, I promise I did, but nothing I found worked quite as well. Not to mention, although comically handled, the song is already about murder and topics typically covered by soap operas and nightly newscasts.
Frankly, the song didn’t belong and furthermore, I lacked the appetite to attack the complicated arrangements and production style a convincing big band production would demand. The song went to the folder of forgotten songs to die a quiet death.
But a funny thing happened over the next few years. Every so often one of my kids would ask me about that detective tune with their names in it. A show would come on and Lora would reference this once-performed ballad. Just like a criminal, the song was still alive, waiting. 🙂
I had written a comedy number for the first album named, “Hold My Beer And Watch This”. I considered it a “throwaway” song, but it became quite popular and is still generating plays around the world to this day. I knew I wanted a comedic song for the new album too, and “Inspector Virlo Morton Lee” was the only real choice. But it could not be a hastily-produced after thought. The arrangements would be murder in and of themselves. (See what I’m doing here?)
I began the track early on and worked on it in between recording the other songs. It was the last song completely finished, and one of the very first I started.
Not only was I tasked with finding the right tones for the instruments, I had to make them sound as if they were being performed in a smoky nightclub in the 30’s by guys in suits and bowties….slightly drunk. 🙂 All while gentlemen with slicked-back hair try to talk to the “dames”… ehhh, you get the picture.
But!!! The song happens at night in a secluded mansion during a thunderstorm. So, the goal was to first place the listener in a classy, yet sketchy bar in the 30’s and then transport them via song to a murder/mystery transpiring in a dark richy-rich world of senators and butlers. Maybe that was a bit ambitious for one dude with a studio in his attic? But I went for it.
I don’t know if I “killed it”, (last one, I promise!) but I tried my best! I hope you like it. Allow yourself to be immersed into its delicious glamorous world. 🙂
You can probably listen to it in less time than it took to read this.