provided by reporter Dan Reifsnyder
Dan Reifsnyder: Tell me about how you got into songwriting.
Joe Piasecki: In 2001, I got a comedy song signed to Goodnight Kiss Music in L.A. In 2002 through GKM – I met #1 hit artist Alan O’ Day who sang “Undercover Angel”. We became friends through the years and in 2008, he cut my song “Hello Mom” in Nashville for his CD “I Hear Voices”. A wonderful man, may he rest in peace. I have co-written four songs with Alan’s good friend, and my mentor, Denny Martin, who is a fantastic Nashville producer and songwriter.
DR: Who are some of your musical influences?
JP: Tom Petty, Dwight Yoakam. Currently, I just found Beth Nielsen Chapman online and her thoughts about the initial creative process are incredible.
DR: I agree! She’s very sweet, too. What made you want to join GSC?
JP: I met Sheree briefly at NSAI in 2008 and her enthusiasm was inspiring.
When I saw she had her own business, I thought it was cool and inexpensive.
DR: What do you feel is different about GSC?
JP: Sheree! She should be a motivational speaker and travel the globe like Tony Robbins or something! I love the real world hook-ups she has provided me with. People I never would have met except through her. I currently have a very controversial song called “Think About It” that I’m going to pitch that was demoed as a result of Sheree finding me the perfect match for the song. She doesn’t really critique–she encourages. I hate when a song service will actually critique 1 or 2 syllables.
DR: Couldn’t agree more. I always walk away feeling inspired after a session with her – she’s a powerhouse of positive energy! What are some songs you wish you’d written?
JP: “New York Hold Her Tight “by Restless Heart–it gives me chills.
“I Hope You Dance” is a great song as well as “Live Like You Were Dying.”
“Play That Funky Music”–I’d love to have those royalties, LOL.
DR: Tell me about your song, “Luckiest Loser.”
JP: This is a true story and much, much longer than this. I tried to put it into a song format. I woke up one day and just wrote for five hours straight! I couldn’t stop, as if I was not in control of the process. Originally titled “Cold Hard Facts”, it was about six times longer than it is now. Denny Martin helped me condense it without losing the story. While writing this song, I needed a certain rhyme. I took out my rhyming dictionary and accidentally dropped it on the floor. It fell open to the exact page that I needed for the rhyme. There’s about 300 other pages in this book. I cried liked a baby. Thanks, Mom!
DR: Interesting. What’s the story behind it?
JP: When my mom was dying in 2008 I was in the room with her.
She could still hear and would motion a bit when I spoke.
But, I need to back up 35 years to tell the whole story.
When I was about six I lost my baseball mitt. I was mad.
I stood in the center of the family room and yelled out at God “Why would you do this?” Then, I challenged him to “prove” he existed to me.
As far as I recall, this is what happened next:
The TV changed channels–there were no remotes back then.
My dad was working in the next room and asked me to get him a hammer.
When I took the hammer to him, his voice came out demonic.
When I went to bed that night, I closed my eyes but could still
see my whole room. I cried out for my mom downstairs.
I told her what happened that day. She said the “Hail Mary” prayer and everything stopped.
Now one year prior to her death, I asked her if she remembered that night.
She said she did remember praying with me, but could not remember the exact details.
Now back to the hospice center. I told her about the story again from when I was a kid. I asked her to send me a sign when she died to show me that she was OK and that my experience as a child was real.
A few minutes later, she died on 01/09/08. As I said goodbye, I told her I would play 198 in the pick three lottery for her. She loved the lottery.
On 1/10/08 I remembered to play the ticket for my mom. It was 7:45 pm. For some reason, the clerk looked at me as if I was crazy when I played that number and I didn’t know, then, why.
I checked the ticket that evening. 198 had come out straight 15 minutes earlier at 7:30pm. I missed winning by a few minutes, so this was why the clerk looked at me like I was crazy. I had played a number that had just hit without even knowing it!
Jump ahead to 1 year later. I play 198 for a whole week around the time of my mom’s death hoping to hit it big. 198 did come in again the exact same time and date as last year!!
The only problem was that my ticket expired on the previous drawing. It was my mom’s way of saying HI, I’m OK, and money is not the answer.
On 01/09/2014, I called the lottery to check the numbers since it was mom’s anniversary and 198 came out again. Feel free to check the results at the Ohio Lottery website. www.ohiolottery.com
DR: That is such a cool story…thanks for sharing it! That’s about all we have time for, but I appreciate you talking with me!
JP: No problem!