Autograph – ‘Get Off Your Ass’


THE BAND:
Steve Lynch – guitars
Randy Rand – bass
Simon Daniels – vocals
Marc Wieland - drums




TRACK FRAGMENTS:
1.)“Get Off Your Ass!” –This intro consisted of Steve paying a very simple rhythm guitar arrangement over the top of a bass and drum line. For the drum line he replaced his hi-hat pattern with a cymbal. After about four measures Steve changed the rhythm guitar arrangement to a short lead guitar riff. After this lead guitar there was a musical rest. During the musical rest Simon sang a vocal accent. After the song kicks back in, there was a second intro arrangement. This second musical arrangement was in direct contrast to the first one. Steve overdubbed a minor lead guitar solo over the top of this second musical intro. Though the minor solo was very short the speed of it was blistering. Showing even at sixty-two, Steve’s dexterity is amazing! In between the lyric lines of the verse Steve played the same rhythm guitar riff of the second musical intro. Underneath the fourth lyric line Steve changed the rhythm guitar arrangement. At this point Steve also double-tracked a second rhythm guitar arrangement. The guys pretty much used the same musical arrangement for the chorus. The band kept the lyric lines of the chorus very simple and straight forward. I did not notice until the second verse that Randy’s bass line was the same rhythm that Steve was playing on guitar. After the second chorus Steve played a short yet very amazing lead guitar solo. Randy played an impressive bass line for the third chorus. Underneath the lyric lines of the coda Steve played a couple lead guitar notes as well. 
2.) “Every Generation” - This intro consisted of two different rhythm guitar arrangements. Instead of a verse this track opened with the chorus. There was a rhythm arrangement change. The backing harmonies of this song were very tight. Simon carried out the note of the last lyric of the first two lyric lines of the verse. This really shows his vocal ability. For the musical verse Randy and Marc locked into a solid groove. For me as a drummer this groove made the musical verse. The rhythm arrangement for this intro and verse reminded me a lot of older Autograph. The last three lyric lines were either double-tracked or consisted of a backing harmony. Randy’s bass line for this track was stunning. There was a small tom-tom fill connecting the second verse with the second chorus. Every now and then over the top of the rhythm guitar arrangement it sounded as if Steve overdubbed a few harmonics. Halfway through the second chorus Steve overdubbed a second rhythm guitar arrangement. This second arrangement was more of a lead guitar riff. After the second chorus there was a breakdown section that consisted of several lead guitar licks. There was a lead vocal line over the top of the breakdown section. The breakdown section leads to a lead guitar solo. Steve wrote an extremely laid back melodic solo for this song. Throughout the rest of the song Steve played a rhythm guitar that was overdubbed by a lead guitar.
3.) ”All I Own” –This track did not have a standard musical intro. Instead the song opened with Simon singing over the top of Steve playing a very simple strumming rhythm. At the end of each lyric line Steve let the last guitar note gently fade away. Because of the way Steve or Simon wrote the rhythm guitar part, Simon’s vocals become the main focus. In between the fourth and fifth lyric lines the rest of the guys kick the song in. It was at this point Steve changed the rhythm guitar arrangement, he double-tracked his minor lead guitar to give it a twin lead guitar effect. In doing so it really suited this ballad very nicely. After the first musical kick-in the arrangement goes back to just lead vocals and guitar. I don’t know what effect Steve used however his guitar sound was astonishing! His acoustic guitar had one HELL of a sound to it. Underneath the amplified rhythm riff there was a bass line. The song really does not fully kick-in until the chorus ensues, a musical delight to the ear. After the second chorus there is a breakdown section. Underneath the breakdown Steve plays a few lead guitar licks that lead to a short but well played solo.
4.) “You Are Us, We Are You” – This track opens with two different rhythm guitar arrangements one on top of the other.  The arrangements that Steve wrote for this song was very reminiscent to Blue Oyster Cult and the riffs Eric Bloom, Donald ‘Buck Dharma’ Roeser and Allen Lanier wrote for “Don’t Fear The Reaper”.  So basically this intro consisted of minor lead guitar solo over the top of two rhythm guitar arrangements.  After these two measures there were two cymbal crashes, over the top of the rhythm guitar arrangement along with a minor lead guitar solo.  Last counted there was two overdubbed rhythm guitar parts underneath a minor lead guitar solo.  This musical change consisted of Marc playing a pattern on his snare and tom-tom while Steve and Randy played the same note arrangement of their guitar and bass.  There was a minor lead guitar solo connecting the musical intro with the musical verse.  Steve changed the rhythm guitar arrangement for the musical verse.  Simon double-tracked the fifth and seventh lyric line of the musical verse.  Simon’s lyrics                                                                                                                                                                                   lines where amazing!!!!  The musical chorus was but right up against the lyrical verse.  Simon’s vocals of the chorus consisted of a huge vocal hook.  The way the guys arranged the lyric lines of the musical chorus reminded me a lot of Autograph’s choruses on their first two releases.  Which I thought was very cool because I thought their first two releases were astonishing for ’84 and ’85.  There was two rhythms guitar arrangements along with a snare drum fill connecting the first chorus with second verse.  The musical and lyrical hook of the second chorus consisted of an amazing hook.  After the second chorus there was a prodigious lead guitar solo.  It sounded as if Steve double-tracked a few of the notes of the lead guitar solo.  Underneath the third verse Steve played a second lead guitar solo.  After the third verse there was a breakdown section. After the breakdown the chorus was repeated up through the coda four times. 
5.) “Meet Me Half Way” – This intro opens with a Simon vocal line.  After the opening lyric line there was a short musical rest before the musical intro kick-in.  Steve’s rhythm guitar arrangement. Randy’s bass line was the same notes as the ones Steve was playing on guitar.  At this point Steve kicked-in a double-tracked rhythm guitar riff.  Randy and Marc gave this musical intro a very concrete groove.  Steve kept the rhythm guitar the same however Randy and Marc change the bass and drum line for the musical verse.  Every now and then underneath Simon’s vocals I can hear a second vocal or something. (next time I talk to Steve I am going to ask him about this)  There was a huge snare drum fill connecting the musical verse with the musical chorus. The rhythm change for the musical chorus was very simple.  The second verse and chorus was a repeat of the first.  After the second chorus there was a lead guitar solo.  This solo was one of the few on the release that had a very abstract feel to it.  After the solo there was a breakdown section.  There was as snare drum fill connecting the breakdown section with the thirds chorus.  The coda consisted of a chorus. 
6.) “I Lost My Mind In America” –This intro consisted of several lead licks over the top of a rhythm arrangement.  The rhythm guitar Steve wrote had a very intense feel to it.  There was a short snare fill connecting the musical verse with the musical chorus.  The lyric lines consisted of a huge lyrical hook. Just barley underneath the rhythm guitar track the mic picks up a second guitar rhythm.  This rhythm did not add or take away from the arrangement.  The lead guitar solo d-for this song started off very melodic then got more intense.  The solo ran underneath the lyric lines of the chorus of the coda.      
7.) ”All Emotions” – This track opens with a musical verse instead of a musical intro.  For the musical chorus Steve overdubbed several lead guitar licks.  Simon says, “guitar” and then there was a minor lead guitar solo.  This solo really was more of a major solo than minor solo.  Stebve’s lead were amazing!  Underneath the opening lyric lines of the second verse Randy played a very cool bass line.  After the first chorus there was a minor solo.  All the way underneath the lyric line Steve played three very cool little lead licks.  All in all the song was very short.     
8.) ”Watch It Now” – Steve’s played a very cool rhythm riff over the top of the drum and bass line of this intro.  There was a rhythm guitar change for the musical verse.  Randy's bass line made the musical verse.  The way the musical verse was arranged had a classic eighties feel to it.  There was a bass line and rhythm guitar change for the musical verse.  There was a lead guitar solo after the first chorus.  The coda consisted of the second chorus.           
9.) ”Ready To Get Down” –This track opened with two different rhythm guitar arrangements.  Underneath these two rhythms there was a bass line.  After one measure Simon kicks in the opening lyric lines.  Underneath the lyric lines Marc keeps time with his hi-hat.  Underneath the third lyric line he opens and closes the hi-hat at this point he not only adds a bass drum pattern but also speeds up the hi-hat pattern.  After the verse the band slows the song down for a measure.  Leading into the chorus there was a minor solo
bonus track:
10.) “Turn Up the Radio” (Live) -



  In was once said by the late Kevin Dubrow (Quiet Riot) “They smoked us all..they got a better response than us and Van Van Halen”.  Due to their rising popularity, Autograph soon signed a contract with RCA Records following a performance at Madison Square Garden in New York City in late 1984.   In October of 1984 Autograph released their first CD titled, ‘Sign In Please’.  The CD spawned one hit single titled, “Turn Up The Radio” peaking on The Billboad 100 at 29 and Mainstrean Rock at 17.  The song is still a crowd favorite that ends the set every night.  Though I really loved the song it was by far not my favorite on the disc.  After releasing two more CDs, ‘That’s The Stuff (October 1985), and ‘Loud And Clear’ (March 1987)  Autograph made the decision to leave RCA.  The band released one more CD titled ‘Missing Pieces’ in 1997 before finally calling it quits.
    In 2013 after a six year hiatus, Steve Lynch, Randy Rand and
Keni Richards got back together for a reunion.  Original vocalist Steve Plunkett, though when asked by Steve made the decision to continue doing what he was doing and turned the guys down.  The members replaced him with former Jailhouse vocalist Simon Danials.  Within a year original drummer was replaced by Marc Weiland.  All I’m going to say about Keni Richards death is that it was listed as a homicide.(There is no need in re-hashing bad memories for the band
    In 2017 Autograph returns with three singles titled, “Every Generation”, “You Are Us, We Are You” and “I Lost My Mind In America”.  All Three songs are featured on this release.  Now don’t get me wrong there are a lot of hard rock and metal fans who really don’t care for Autograph much.  I completely understand there are going to be some that are not going to like this release.  How the Hell do you not like a band whos guitarist invented a ten finger-tapping technique and uses it on a regular bases.  Steve is not great at this he is the master of it.  Hiring Simon in replace of Steve was a rare gem that made a one-hundered percent improvement within the vocals of Autograph and that’s not a knock against Steve it is just Simon is just a better all around vocalist.  ‘Get Off Your Ass’ is a must have for all hard rock/metal fans and that includes longtime Autograph fans.