"It's not those who write the laws who run the country, it's those who write the songs."

Chinese Proverb

Speak Your Mind

The social and political tunes of Scotty & The Skeptics


I am Scott Morrison the founder of Castalia Communications, the author of the forthcoming novel, The Energy Caper, an amateur songwriter, and the only permanent member of the imaginary band Scotty and The Skeptics. Over the next few months I will be pitching these tunes and other songs written over the three decades here as well as on You Tube and My Space.

I will also be reading The Energy Caper as a free podcast, probably on podiobooks.com. Follow the adventures of an idealistic band of twenty-somethings out to find love and change the world as they and a "good" Richard Nixon struggle to defeat the Arab Oil Embargo, free the country from the clutches of the oil industry, make America energy independant, and save their world, Earth One, from the catastrophe of global warming.

Book Cover showing Richard Nixon on Mount Rushmore

About These Sites

The two companion sites--energycaper.com (for the novel) and skeptico.com (for the songs)--are about as "under construction" as sites can be. I am taking introductory Dreamweaver/HTML classes at the local JC, but the learning curve for non-techies like me who really don't like this stuff is steep. I'd much rather be writing songs, stories, or another novel than tweaking computer code in tiny type. I also have to get my chops down on Garageband, iMovie, iTunes, and who knows what else to make this work.

What Are Song Demoes?

When I first picked up a guitar and stumbled into music in the late 1970s at the ripe old age of twenty-nine wannabe songwriters who were not performers were common. Working in the Tin Pan Alley/Brill Building/Nashville tradition, the goal was to get a song "cut" by a famous band or artist who could turn it into a hit. Writers back then were expected to provide demo tapes with simple arrangements, presenting only the bare bones of a song because artists' managers, music publishers, and record company honchos did not want demoes cluttered up with uncessary harmonies and instrumentation. They wanted to use their professional "ears" to hear the song in their own minds as they or their artists might do it. In the digital age that approach has completely changed. Nowadays, when you go to "song screenings" the honchos want full-production demoes. Most of these tunes were recorded on the old bare-bones demo premise.

WANTED: Future Grammy Winners

I am putting the skeptico.com site up primarily as a vehicle for pitching songs to musicians and industry pros who would otherwise never hear them, but I'm really going for the future Grammy winners of America.

Most of the tunes in this batch are part of my lifelong attempt to change the world through ridicule and satire. The recent 2006 election has outdated some, and a couple need minor lyrical tweaks to update to the current decade--the Zeroes. I also felt compelled to get a couple of my Vietnam songs up out there before my time is up even though I doubt they have any commercial potential.

I seem to average about two songs a year, and I've got about sixty kicking around in my files--mushy love songs, country weepers, hard rockers, folky ballads, children's tunes--most of which have never been recorded or heard outside my circle of friends. When I get the You Tube thing going the production will be even more basic than what you'll hear here, just me thrashing away in my primitive folky style and trying to sing on key. To hell with the full production demo crap! I want these tunes out there, and I want them out there NOW. I am not a performer, I'm a writer. I've done my job. Now it's up to YOU, the future Grammy winners of America, to cover the songs in your own style and make them hits. Pretty simple.

Thanks for listening.

Scott Morrison


Zoloft, It's Been Good To Know Ya

This is an attempt to laugh off the hypocrisy and insanity of the so-called "war on drugs." It is sung to the tune of "So Long, It's Been Good to Know Ya," Woody Guthrie's upbeat lament about the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression.


Bill Gates Don't Need No More

Written in 1993, the numbers in this have changed as Bill's fortunes waxed and waned with the stock market. It started out at $6 billion and in the dotcom boom went all the way to $90 billion. This was last updated in 2003. Not sure where he stands now.


The Prophylactic Song

This is for all the singles out there in dating-land as well as for those who may be considering cheating on their boyfriends, girlfriends, spouses, or significant others. This song always gets huge laughs when performed before mature audiences. If you're looking to rev up your act with a comedic punch, this song will do it.

WARNING! This is WAAAY too risque for your mom or your kids.


Gotta Save Pittsburgh

Every drill sergeant in the U.S. Army had a distinctive cadence call that separated his platoon from others in the company. Drill Sgt. Watson had us sing his lyrics to this melody as we marched hither and yon over the sands of Fort Dix in the summer of 1970. We knew it as "I'm Gonna Go To Vietnam, Honey, Honey," but I later learned it derived from an old American folk tune called "The Crawdad Song." The two guys in the song, Frank and Big George, went to high school with me back in New Castle, Pennsylvania. George graduated in '65, and Frank graduated with me in the class of '66.

On a related topic, to understand how Nixon's cynical use of the draft lottery to mute oppostion to the war in Vietnam affected those subject to it, check out my story, "Draft Night," in the new anthology Veterans of War, Veterans of Peace edited by Maxine Hong Kingston. It is available on Amazon and in bookstores everywhere, and you can read more about it at: http://www.vowvop.org

The protagonist in the story is also a main character in my forthcoming novel, The Energy Caper. Check back for info on publication dates and author readings.



Insanity Bobbity Boo

The saga of John and Loreena Bobbit as sung to the tune of "Bibbity Bobbity Boo," the song the Fairy Godmother sings in Walt Disney's Cinderella as she outfits Cinderella for the ball, using her magic wand to turn pumpkins into coaches and mice into horses. I double-dare you not to laugh. For comedic performers, this is a crowd-pleaser.


Blow the NRA Away

The true meaning of a "well-regulated militia" and the Second Amendment. If you are a wingnut, better skip this, as the truth may be too much to handle. Due to security and public safety concerns this tune is not recommended to be performed in some venues.


Republicans Rule the World

This was an attempt to both expose Republican hypocrisy and stick the current occupant of the White House with the nickname "Fuzzy" (for his famous accusation that Al Gore used "fuzzy math"). Seems to me to be a much more appropriate and deserved nickname than "Dubya" or "Shrub." My hope was to hang it on him in order to defeat him in 2004. Didn't work. Since the mid-term elections of 2006 Republicans no longer rule the entire world, but he is fuzzier than ever.


Poofy Shoulders

Recorded in 1995, this anti-fashion/anti-necktie rant is sung by Becky Sutherland and Anastasia Terris to the tune of the 1963 Pete Seeger hit "Little Boxes."


Polly's Song

Unlike every other song here, there is nothing remotely satirical about this one. In 1993 I was living in Petaluma, California, during the Polly Klaas kidnapping ordeal that gripped the nation. I and everyone around me experienced the tragedy and the frenzied two-month media circus up close and personal.

This is by far the hardest song I ever wrote. It was written the night we learned for certain Polly wasn't coming home. The lead singer is my little buddy and a housemate from that time, Trisha, who had just started junior high and who sat next to Polly in seventh grade history class the same day she was taken. It's now thirteen years later, and an article in the local paper reminded us that Polly has now been gone longer than she was here. On a positive note, Trisha is now the mother of three gorgeous daughters.


Dogmatised Opinions

All you need to know about the meaning of life and the purpose of existence.


The Ayatollah Rag

Originally written circa 1983 at the prospect of America being taken over by religious fanatics, this gets updated every few years as the players and political issues change. This is the 2003 update. Sadly, it hasn't changed much.


The M.B.A.

The melody to the world's two best known train songs came from a sea shanty published in 1865 called "The Ship that Never Returned." It's first incarnation as a train song was as "The Wreck of the Old '97," which in 1924 became the first million-selling record and the subject of the first major copyright lawsuit over songwriting. After years of delays, the writer won, but died before he could collect (songwriting is like that). In recent decades that version has been covered by performers such as Johnny Cash, Hank Snow, and Flatt and Scruggs.

In 1948 it was rewritten as a campaign song for a Boston mayoral race, and in 1959 the Kingston Trio turned that version into a monster hit, "The M.T.A. Song" (often known as "Charlie on the M.T.A."), about a guy who boards a subway and never returns.

My version, recorded in 1984 in response to the excesses of the "Decade of Greed," is still a train song. Unfortunately, the master tracks are lost, so unlike other songs here, I haven't updated the vocals or the recorded lyrics, but all you need to do to turn this tried-and-true tune into a 21st century hit is to replace "soybean futures" with "dotcom futures" and "in the Eighties" with "in the Zeroes" and--presto!--it's up-to-date.


I'm Gonna Be a History Ranger

Every guy who went through Basic Combat Training in the U.S. Army in the Vietnam Era knew this drill cadence as "I'm Gonna Be an Airborne Ranger." I have repurposed it in an attempt to set the history of our intervention straight.


Houston Texas, D. C. 

This was originally recorded in 1983 as "Beverly Hills, D.C." in an effort to defeat Ronald Reagan. Didn't work. This is the updated 2004 version recorded in hopes of defeating G.W. "Fuzzy" Bush, but that didn't work either. Oh well.


For downloads of MP3s not yet available here please Email Us
Or Contact:
Scott Morrison PO Box 2503 Petaluma, CA 94953 • 800-777-9977
All songs Copyright Scott Morrison and Skeptico Music-BMI