The Pilar French Intention

The Pilar French Intention

 Portland, Oregon, USA
BandRockBlues

Whether performing solo with a guitar or mandolin, or with her full band, Pilar French artfully combines American schools of pop rock, funk, and blues with insightful lyrics designed to provoke thought, surprise, and intrigue.

Biography

She's Pilar French. And sometimes her band performs as "the Pilar French Intention" and other times as "French/Slamp," depending on whether she's sharing the bill with band-mate, Joshua Slamp.

She is a singer, a songwriter and a multi-instrumentalist as comfortable playing solo with an acoustic guitar in an intimate setting as she is rocking out with her band on a festival or club stage. And Pilar is never content to limit what she's singing about…be it lost love, human perseverence, or politics.

She's a deep mix of styles and insights. Funny, brainy, sexy, articulate and precise with a desire for serendipty.

"I do use music to show my emotions but I also try to write thought-evoking music. Maybe you read the lyrics and you think it's about something totally different than I do. Maybe it's intel-rock-tual. A thinking person's music. If you want something you can marinade on, you can listen to multiple times and discover something different every time you listen to it…that's what my music is."

She has lived in Portland for thirteen years, having gone to college in Chicago and coming from deep Midwestern roots.

"I am completely influenced by blues. It's the root, a fundamental musical style and it pervades my music but I'm inspired by a lot of different musicians."

In Portland she joined a number of bluesey, funky bands including Soul Patrol Mission.

"We played on top of skyscrapers in downtown Portland and on the Portland Spirit. We played cheesy 80s tunes on acoustic guitars and the accordion."

"Swerve," a six-piece blues band took up the next two years. She played with singer Kate Mann and worked with singer Lara Michell from Stolen Sweets and Dirty Martini. Pilar joined Michell and Nicole Campbell in a raucous cover band known as "Guilty Pleasures and One Hit Wonders." Pilar has played bass in several other bands.

She released the album "Butterflies" in 2007 and her new album, "Alive" will be released in September 2009.

"This time I wanted to express my passion more, my vision of what I was feeling when I wrote the songs. I think I've evolved as a musician and found that one of the things I like to do when I write a song is to have a lot of layers and changes and to take the listeners to unexpected places."

Although she performs solo, she maintains a working band, "Pilar French Intention" which has gone through several incarnations. The Intention currently features Joshua Slamp (www.joshuaslamp.com) and Jeff Koch (Garth Michael McDermott, Scott Gallegos) on bass and guitar, and Tony Howard (Pinehurst Kids, Garth Michael McDermott) on drums.

Lyrics

By Myself

Written By: Pilar French

What do you want from me?
You want me to set you free?
I've got some news for you, I am just a prisoner myself.

I'm not your mother, I'm not your savior.
I've got some news for you.
I can't even save myself.

I don't want to be your possession and I don't want to be your obsession.
All I want to be is by myself.

I can feel your eyes on me.
I wonder what you think you see.
I've got some news for you.
I'm standing on the inside and I can't see much in here myself.

I don't want to be your idle fantasy.
And I don't want to feel your gaze burn through me.
All I want to be is by myself.

Funny Girls' Blues

Written By: Pilar French

I’m doing something wrong; I know I don’t belong here.
I sing a little song to myself to make me feel better.
And then you come along; and you ask me what’s wrong.
Honey please don’t spread the news
But sometimes even funny girls get the blues.

I hide my disdain; my smile reveals no pain.
I sing that little song to myself; force me to feel better.
Don’t say you admire me; it’s the ties of laughter that bind me.
Oh yes, it’s all a ruse
But sometimes even funny girls get the blues.

I’m the life of the crowd; my laugh is extra loud.
That little song screams in my head; I must do better.
There’s no wine on this dress, but the truth I must confess.
Oh yes, I’ve as much to lose
But sometimes even funny girls get the blues.

Honey Child

Written By: Pilar French

Hey, baby where you been?
Hey, tell me where you been.
I’ve been waiting my whole life for you
And seen your face in so many men.

Sweet thing, tell me something new.
Sweet thing, tell me something new.
I’m so sick of the small talk
I want a real point of view.

Honey Child, I love it when you wild.
Honey Child, you got me so beguiled.
How you drop me to my knees with your crooked smile.

So glad you don’t need a mother.
And that you don’t feel like my brother.
My whole life I’ve wait for someone like you yeah.

So glad its not complicated, and that your not weird and jaded.
Cuz my whole life I’ve waited for someone like you yeah.

So glad your not with another, cuz there’s so much to discover.
My whole life I’ve waited for someone like you yeah.

Baby, Sweet thing, Honey Child

Closer

Written By: Pilar French

You look like you don’t know about it.
You look like a star.
But deep down you must know about it
For it defines who you are.

And all I can do is sit in wonder
As I watch and wait and long for you.
Will you let me get a little closer,
Closer to you?

You walk around in your own quiet way.
You walk like a star,
Shining on through the distance,
Shedding light so far.

And all I can do is sit in wonder
As I watch and wait and wish for you.
Will you let me get a little closer,
Closer to you?
Closer to you.




Alive

Written By: Pilar French

How did I get here, drifting out to sea?
Yesterday, everything was so clear.
Now everything’s gone gray.

One minute I’m righted and going strong.
Another minute and the bow breaks and everything’s gone.

Captured and capsized, drifting out to sea.
Caught up in a riptide, I yell for you but you can’t hear me.

Did I throw it all away? I didn’t throw it all away.
She tries to drag me down, but still I fight and thrive.
Don’t tell me I shouldn’t be alive.
Alive. Alive.

Dissonant laughter to keep me company.
Am I here or hereafter six days lost at sea?

Did I throw it all away? I didn’t throw it all away.
She tries to drag me down, but still I fight and thrive.
Don’t tell me I shouldn’t be alive.
Alive. Alive.

One More Dance

Written By: Pilar French

Throwing rocks at the window
Skipping stones in the snow.
Wonder which way to go
Since you left me all alone.

Only friend is the fuzz on the radio
Holes in my shoes, dirt on my clothes.
Didn’t think you’d really go
Called my bluff, took the cat and the dog, I am really alone.

Too late to say, too late to say
Give me another chance.
No words can change, no words can change
An ugly glance.

But if I could, I would, give recompense
And ‘cause I can I will
Dream of one more dance
With you.

Stuck down on the ground floor
Elevator’s out, a lock on the stairwell door.
Left me wishing for so much more.
Where life was once life, now it’s just a chore.

Too late to say, too late to say
Give me another chance.
No words can change, no words can change
An ugly glance.

But if I could, I would, give recompense
And ‘cause I can I will
Dream of one more dance,
Dream of one chance
With you.

No More (Grandma's Song)

Written By: Pilar French

I can't breathe. Something's wrong.
My chest is all tight inside.
There's something going on.
I’m so tired. I don't mean to whine.
Actually I feel pretty good.
I guess it's finally my time.

Don't cry my child. I'm just on my way
‘Cause I'm old and I'm tired and I don't want to stay
Here no more.

Things got pretty boring at 93.
First they took away my car
And my ability to be free.
At 97, I can barely walk.
And if you ask me a question, well,
I’ll just give some messed up gibberish talk.

So don’t cry my child. I’m just on my way
To a place where I can run and play.
Don’t cry my child. I’m just on my way
‘Cause I’m old and tired and I don’t want to stay
Here no more.
No more.
No more.

Remember to live your life.
Remember to live your life,
My beautiful child,
Oh my beautiful child.

Catacomb

Written By: Pilar French

Saints and sinners
Disguised as lawyers for the lamb.
There’s no winners
Only losers in the end.

After six years where’s the justice here
Lurking some where in a catacomb?
After six years there’s no justice here.
She’s drifting somewhere in a catacomb.

There’s no doubt, and no way out.
The game is catch me if you can.
Find another route and round about
And start the game all over again.
All alone, you’re on your own.
Remember what you’ve learned.
Remember what you’ve learned.

Snowy winters
Cover secrets in the land.
Rains and rivers can’t wash away
The dirt that stains our hands.

After six years, where’s the justice here
Lurking somewhere in a catacomb?
After six years there’s no justice here.
She’s buried deep down in a catacomb.

There’s no doubt, and no way out.
The game is catch me if you can.
Find another route and round about
And start the game all over again.
All alone, you’re on your own.
Remember what you’ve learned.
Remember what you’ve learned.

Mercy

Written By: Pilar French

Slide me down, I bit my lip
I hit my head on the ground.
Quite a grip, just your fingertips
Make my head go round.

Can’t catch my breath, I bit down.
Taste the blood in my mouth.
Quite a grip, just your finger tips.
Oh have mercy now.

Oh, please have mercy,
A little mercy on me now.
Please have mercy,
A little mercy on my now.

So easily let go.
Nothing left to show
But the truth that lies inside me.
Do you even know that you touch my soul
And it absolutely frightens me? Inside me, yeah.

Who would’ve thought I’d be overwrought,
I’d slip and hit the ground?
I skinned my knee but you kiss it for me.
Oh my head goes round.
Can’t catch my breath, I bit down.
Taste the blood in my mouth
Like a wine to sip, your sweet lips
Have no mercy now.

Oh, please have mercy,
A little mercy on me now.
Please have mercy,
A little mercy on me now.

Try

Written By: Pilar French

Trials and tribulations,
Fight the good fight,
Feed a nation.

Secret revelations
Seep through my skin,
Sweet inspiration.

Sleeping on a ledge
Above the ground ten stories tall.
Floating through the air
Fly or Fall.

All you know is
All you can show is
Oooh, you’ve got to
Try, Try, Try.

Subtle incantations
Draw my bridges down
‘Cross generations.

Build a home of flesh and bone
Ten stories tall,
Rooted in the ground
Beyond recall.

And all you know is,
All you can show is,
Oooh, you’ve got to
Try, Try, Try.
Try, Try, Try.

Higher Ground

Written By: Pilar French

Seven years ago, the dove flew out the door
And down the road and round the bend
Never to be seen again.
I turn my eyes up to the sky
To where the crow flies in the wind,
Seek a bearing for my plan.

Silence wakes inside my skin
And I begin to mend the fences
Of the ones who long to know my chances.

Years of troubled times, trapped behind the boundary lines
Define the crimes of who I am supposed to be.
But I am shedding off this skin
And I throw it to the wind.
Time to begin again.

Silence quakes inside my skin
And I begin to mend the fences
Of the ones who long to know my chances.

Twenty miles to go, gotta set a course of action.
Taking in the view, what a sweet distraction.
Twenty miles to go, dig our heals in for some traction.
Finally taking in the view, as we head for
Higher ground, Higher ground.

Tides of changing times
Trapped behind blue skies, a disguise of who we’re supposed to be.
But we’re shedding of this skin
And we throw it to the wind.
Time to begin again.

Silence quakes inside my skin
And I begin to mend the fences
Of the ones who long to know my chances.

Twenty miles to go, gotta set a course of action.
Taking in the view, what a sweet distraction.
Twenty miles to go, dig our heals in for some traction.
Finally taking in the view, gonna head for
Higher ground, Higher ground.

Discography

Pilar released her debut album "Butterflies" in March 2007. Tracks from that album have streamed on KINK FM (Portland, OR), KOTO FM (Telluride, CO), KMUN (Oregon Coast Radio) as well as Women of the 90s, the Stonewailer.com, mastanmusic.com and Radio Crystal Blue internet radio stations.

Pilar's sophomore album, "Alive" scheduled to be released October 2009 can now be heard in full on sonicbids.

Set List

Pilar's repertoire is up to four hours.

Safe Place to Fall
Home
By Myself
Honey Child
Closer
Funny Girl's Blues
Here and Now
Let It Go
Icarus

Alive
One More Dance
No More
Mercy
Catacomb
Higher Ground
Try
End of the Day
Running Man
Comfort of a Memory

Pilar also performs covers by Lucinda Williams, Tom Petty, and Radiohead to name a few.