Bob – Logride

1992 Sonic Hope Records
Glendora, California, USA

Chad B. Edmundson – Vocals, rhythm guitar
J.D. Carnes – Lead guitar, vocals
John R. Williamson – Bass guitar, vocals
Eric C. Paulsen – Drums, vocal

Side 1:

  1. Aspect
  2. Short of a Revolution
  3. Snowdogs
  4. Eric’s Song
  5. Logride

Side 2:

  1. Underbelly
  2. Thank God
  3. Lackluster
  4. Saving Grace / And for a Reason
  5. Bob

So this is not the Bob that was on Fingerprint Records that released Tales From the House of the Wholly Bobble as far as I can tell. This seems to be a super-group made up of various solo folk artists from the Sonic Hope Records label. Except they are not doing folk rock – it is more like alternative/indie rock that seems to share many influences with Joe Christmas. Which makes me wonder if this is a later version of Household Morgan? Chad Bryant Edmundson and John R. Williamson both have solo tapes, and maybe the other two do as well that I just haven’t heard (Paulsen has played on tapes by Edmundson and Williamson). “Lackluster” is a cover of a David Finley song, but they start off with the chords from the 77s “I Can’t Get Over It” before transitioning into the song. The song that I have labeled as “Bob” is not listed – it’s basically people singing “Bob” in a bunch of funny ways.

Household Morgan – Demo

Household Morgan
1989 Sonic Hope Records

  1. Face My Fears (live)
  2. Just Can’t Understand (live)
  3. Summer’s Never Been This Long (live)
  4. Help Me (live)
  5. All Up to You (live)
  6. Faith Overcomes
  7. Grow a Goatee
  8. Household Morgan (instrumental) (live)
  9. I Fall Down

This demo was on the back of David Finley’s Tired Feet, Hungry Soul. So I guess it was released the same date, but there is no information on it. It’s more of an indie rock/alt rock band, kind of like early Joe Christmas with more structure. I wonder if this was an early version of Bob – a band that formed from various solo artists of the Sonic Hope Records label? Or maybe it is just some random band that Finley wanted to promote? There are no song names listed, so I took a guess for each one. Some songs are live, others appear to have been home recorded. Also note that the demo could be called Household Morgan, but one of the live songs they say “Household Morgan” as if they are giving a band intro, so my guess for now is that it is the band name. But it is also an instrumental song, so I had to name that song with the only words it had. The two home recordings are acoustic singer/songwriter type songs, and in front of one (“Grow a Goatee”) they say Kevin and David are the ones performing. Is that David Finley? Funny lyrics on that one: “Just grow a Goatee… for the needy….” (mocking the lack of caring in style conscious Christians).

Missing Information: Who played on this, song titles?

David Finley – Tired Feet, Hungry Soul

David Finley
Tired Feet, Hungry Soul
1989 Sonic Hope Records
Azusa, Arizona, USA

David Finley – Guitar, Voice
John R. Williamson – Bass guitar

  1. Lack-Luster
  2. Brush Me Back
  3. Unplastered
  4. Sitting Here
  5. Skyscape Personal
  6. Grace
  7. A Song Won’t Stop the World
  8. Pulchritude
  9. It Isn’t October Anymore
  10. A New Friend
  11. Sorry Mr. Beckett
  12. Tired Feet, Hungry Soul

This is one of many artists on the Sonic Hope Records label. Finley has appeared on other demos by Robert Deeble, John R. Williamson, and Chad Bryant Edmundson. Williamson also plays bass on this tape. The sound is mostly acoustic singer-song writer folk, with the aforementioned bass guitar adding a bit of texture to the songs. The songs were written between 1987 and 1989, but recorded in 1989. I don’t know if Finley had more tapes before or after this one. Also of note, the artwork in the j-card was by Finley as well (as is the case with most Sonic Hope Records releases, the j-card is a full sheet of paper folded down to j-card dimensions). The liner notes also mention that Finley ran a poetry journal called The Grapevine. While the j-card makes it seem like there were 6 songs on Side 1 and 6 songs on side 2, it turned out that all 12 songs were on Side 1. Side 2 was a collection of song by a band called Household Morgan, which was more alternative rock than Finley. I assume that means that Finley was involved with or connected to Household Martin in some way? I don’t know, but I will treat that side as its own tape.

John R. Williamson – Make a Songwriter Happy

John R. Williamson
Make a Songwriter Happy
1993 Sonic Hope Records
Claremont, California, USA

John R. Williamson – Vocals, guitars, other instruments?

Side 1:

  1. Where They Meet
  2. The Observant Scout
  3. 14 Adjustments
  4. Trying to Love Clayton Ides
  5. The Breadth of My Will
  6. Hot Jazz

Side 2:

  1. Exodus Revisited
  2. Friends
  3. From Russia With Love
  4. The Ballad of Funnycuzi
  5. The Death of the Rough Rider
  6. Hart Overboad
  7. Thanks a Lot

From what I can tell, this is at least Williamson’s 4th or 5th demo (depending on when the undated Sketches came out, or if there are other earlier demos I haven’t heard of. Since Canvas of Blues was also released in 1993, but ’m not sure which one came out first. There is also a missing song on Side 1 – seven are listed, but only six are played. I can name all of the tracks except for track 2 – so it is either “Roley Poley” or “The Observant Scout.” Based on the liner notes, I went with “The Observant Scout” – but I could be wrong. This tape follows other Williamson releases, in that it is mostly folk rock with many other instruments thrown in. That makes some songs come across as more Americana Rock than folk rock.

John R. Williamson – Sketches

John R. Williamson
199? Sonic Hope Records
Palo Verde, California, USA

John R. Williamson – Vocals, guitars

Mike Harkins – Trombone
Korby Paulsen – Guitar
Eric Patton – Drums
Mandy Horak – Singing

Side 1:

  1. Reckoning
  2. The K-Mart Song
  3. Morning Storm
  4. Spiney Snake
  5. Alone With a Will
  6. Ode to Keaton’s Young Sherlock

Side 2:

  1. I’m Breathing
  2. Ray Horne
  3. Eyes
  4. Clinging to Jesus’ Cloak
  5. Poetic Prophetic Musical Sketches
  6. Such is Love

This is another John R. Williamson release, but without a date on it. I assume it was in the 1990s like his other ones, but I have no idea where it falls in the order with other tapes like Canvas of Blue or Do I Dare to Eat a Peach? The sound is also similar to his other tapes, being mostly acoustic alternative rock. Sometimes it’s folk-ish, other times it is singer-songwriter-ish, but it also seems to be a bit outside of those genres as well. This could be due to the occasionally bass guitar, percussion, or other instruments that get thrown in the mix. Unfortunately, the first song on side 2 (“I’m Breathing”) was a bit mangled on this copy, but you can still kind of make it out, and that issue goes away by the next song.

Missing Information: what year was this released?

Chad Bryant Edmundson – Promise

Chad Bryant Edmundson
1991 Sonic Hope Records
San Juan Cap, California, USA

Chad Bryant Edmundson – Lead vocals, backing vocals, acoustic guitars, electric guitars, keyboards, percussion

David Finley – Vocals on “Sorry Mr. Beckett”
Robert Deeble – Lead guitar on “Sorry Mr. Beckett”
John R. Williamson – Guitar on “Justice at the Crossroads,” bass on “Aspect”
Eric Paulsen – Drums on “Aspect”
J.D. – Lead guitar on “Aspect”

Side 1:

  1. Sorry Mr. Beckett
  2. And for Reason
  3. Janie
  4. Aspect
  5. Justice at the Crossroads

Side 2:

  1. Love and Tombstones
  2. Hope
  3. On This Day
  4. Shared Laughter
  5. [bonus live]

This is an earlier demo from Edmunson – two years before his Wonder and Strangeness demo. It’s still on Sonic Hope Records, so many of the usually Sonic Hope people guest on here as well. The sound this time is mostly acoustic folk, but there some other sounds as well. There is a live recording of “Aspect,” which is an instrumental full band rock song. There are also places where electric guitars and keyboards are used to add some texture to the acoustic folk songs. The last track is part of a live track, but I can’t make out the vocals to say what the title could possibly be.

Chad Bryant Edmundson – Wonder and Strangeness

Chad Bryant Edmundson
Wonder and Strangeness
1993 Sonic Hope Records
San Juan Cap, California, USA

Chad Bryant Edmundson – Vocals, electric and acoustic guitars, keyboard, harmonica, hand drums on “Alcatraz”
John R. Williamson – Bass, second vocals on “Saving Grace,” lead electric on “Colombo’s Wife”
David Finley – Piano and electric guitar on “Underhanded”

Side 1:

  1. Driven
  2. Saving Grace
  3. Walking on Water
  4. Alcatraz was Winking
  5. Felicity

Side 2:

  1. Underhanded
  2. Morning
  3. Story of Ruth
  4. Scooby
  5. Colombo’s Wife
  6. [phone message]

Sonic Hope Records certainly was very prolific – but I have never seen an actual vinyl records by them. Still, it seems that John R. Williamson plays on almost all of their recordings in some way. This demo is like other releases by the label – acoustic folk music with a few different instruments and styles thrown in to keep it interesting. It seems there is bass guitar on many songs, but not all of them have drums or percussion. Well, it actually seems like there are always two instruments on most songs: bass and acoustic, or electric and acoustic, or even percussion and acoustic.

John R. Williamson – Canvas of Blue

John R. Williamson
Canvas of Blue
1993 Sonic Hope Records
Claremont, California, USA

John R. Williamson – Vocals, guitars, other instruments?

Chad Edmunson – Vocals on “Where Did the Doctor Go?”
David Finley – Vocals on “Where Did the Doctor Go?”
Eric Paulsen – Strumming and croaking on “A Humdrum Conundrum,” boost guitar on “Chess With Death”
Michael Knepher – Strumming and croaking on “A Humdrum Conundrum”
Korby Paulsen – Drums on “Temecula”

Side 1:

  1. Danish Straightjacket
  2. Bigger Than Blue
  3. Our Guilt-Ridden Alchemist
  4. Chess With Death
  5. Where Did the Doctor Go?
  6. Temecula
  7. A Humdrum Conundrum

Side 2:

  1. Juggler Treading Water
  2. Captivity
  3. Move It Along
  4. Arise
  5. Sarah and Abraham
  6. Landing in a Family
  7. Testimony in the Mother Tongue

This is one of several recordings by Williamson on Sonic Hope Records, the same label home as Robert Deeble of Days Like These fame. As one would guess, this is acoustic folk music, but with a more noticeable rock ‘n roll sensibility in that there is more percussion and upright bass than you usually find on these types of albums. Also some more electric guitar here and there. There is kind of a rollicking Hee-Haw-ish groove underneath some of the songs, but with Williamson doing something more like acoustic Indie rock over the top. Which makes for a more interesting listen across the whole album than it would be if he was just doing the acoustic singer/songwriter thing for a dozen or so songs. The cover is actually a near full page color laser-printer printed page, folded to the size and shape of a j-card.

Robert Deeble – The Big Yellow

Robert Deeble
The Big Yellow
1992 Liberation Music / Sonic Hope Records
Long Beach, California, USA

Robert Deeble – Vocals, acoustic guitars, drums
J.R.W – Bass on 1, 2, and 7
Kirby Paulsen – Guitars on 2 and 8
Steve Light – Bass on 6
Billy B – Drums on 9
Steve M – Bass on 9
Trevor – Guitar on 9

Side 1:

  1. The Queen of England
  2. Pop Song
  3. Penpal
  4. Greyhound
  5. Interlude

Side 2:

  1. Dondee
  2. All My Friends Kim
  3. Answering Machine Song
  4. Shantytown
  5. The Queen (reprise)

Robert Deeble is fairly known in the Christian music underground. This tape is a some-what eclectic collection of acoustic folk songs, random recordings / samples, and even a guitar alternative rock track or two. I have heard this tape before, but I was surprised to find out that “Pop Song” was recorded for a Mark Krischak compilation that never happened. Deeble was later signed to Brainstorm Artists International to release an album as Days Like These, but he also had a few other recordings reach national attention as well.