Shotgun (Song)

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Mansun Song
Name Shotgun
Demo Early version from old Paul Draper site, Studio Acetates
Track length
  • 6:37 (Album version, 6:46 (Demo versions) »
Writer/composer Dominic Chad
Recorded Jan Kybeert
Producer Mark 'Spike' Stent, Paul Draper
Mixed by Mike Hunter, Paul Walton
  • Six »
  • th 1998 (Japan)
  • th1998 (UK)
Published by Universal

'Shotgun' is a song by Mansun which was first released on the bands second album 'Six'.

Release information


Six 10th Anniversary Blog Comments

"The first minute was produced by me with Mike Hunter, the rest by me and Spike. I tried to get as rubbish a guitar sound as possible for the first minute of this track and make the recording as bad as possible. The first minute of this song is supposed to be crap, deliberately crap. Let me explain. The first minute is supposed to be a pisstake of a theme tune for a fictional Hanna Barbera cartoon from the seventies called 'Shotgun', the type of thing I remembered from when I was a little kid; 'Wacky Races' was the blueprint. This came about coz I'd read a bit of Chad's book 'The Tao of Pooh' and planned to write some lyrics about it and the philosophy behind the parallels with the Winnie the Pooh character. I know he's not a cartoon character as such, but it made sense to think of him as one coz then I could make the backing music work for the first bit and link it together lyrically with the rest of the song. Being a bit of a cynic, I thought 'The Tao of Pooh' it was all me arse to be honest, but eventually I bought into some of the ideas and it was very interesting and it sort of won me over, or did it. So, to do the first minute in an authentic way I went and invested in a box set of the Hanna Barbera sound samples. The track starts off with one of the samples 4 times. Andie's tom fill going into the vocal is authentically rubbish, he's a method drummer. That means he pulls his stick out of his hand just before the end of the track. You have to be a left footer for that one. Chad and I shout the words as badly as possible, it's a load of old toss from Taoist philosophy, sorry I mean a profound juxt*&%$^&*^ (I know, I know I tried to avoid using that word, but it is in a humorous way taking the piss out of itself so gimme a break, I've ran out of words, I could feel the collective huhhh, as my fingers hit the keyboard, I hate it as much as you, and don't think in your own mind's eye twinkle that it's 'sixth form', of course it fucking is! And sixth form is worse than ju.&*^£$^%&* This fucking thing is longer than most sodding dissertations. Hello! Hello? Is anyone still reading this or are you back to Guitar Hero III? I'm embarrassing myself now. The piano bit after the first line of lyrics I think I played live, it's a bit ahead of the beat. Who was it again who said I couldn't play the piano? You can hear Dick Dastardly's car screeching to a halt under the piano, it's called The Mean Machine, if you turn the stereo up right now at that section, you can just about see it, see, it's grey. I mean purple. Then I ask Chad to work out something shit on a rubbish sounding lead guitar from Woolies plugged into a cornflake box. Followed by a generic cartoon sample going up. All starting at 22 seconds in. Then I overdubbed a rubbish sounding guitar playing the most out of tune frets I can find as high up the fretboard as I can find, and that took a while. This monumental piece of musical history is at 27 seconds in and is based again on the Prince song 'Erotic City' and took me over a week, 2 hours and 81 seconds to develop and crowbar into the gap between Chad lifting his finger off the fret, moving it thru the air at the speed of sound and replacing it back on a more different fret. By the way there was no pro tools or digital recording on this track. We had to line a CD player up with the Hanna Barbera CD in, recorded the cartoon samples from the CD player and release the pause button right at the perfect moment as the master tapes ran. Ahh, the good old days."

"The track 'Shotgun' lyrically is all about allegory. The shotgun itself is allegory. The final master tape of Muttley can be heard digitally remastered with MP3 compression at 0.32 into 'Shotgun'. After the Muttley fiasco we got back to some serious work. Chad played a rubbish guitar part, much worse than the middle 8 of 'Scooby Scooby Do, where are you?' I added a little guitar dive before it to fill a tiny gap between Muttley and the guitar line. Andie was doing all sorts of shit, paradiddles and what have you. I layered a dive bomb note under Chad's guitar bit at 0.35 seconds in. It is drenched in reverb, the rest of the track is dry and uncompressed so far. Then I slowed the 2" master tape down and Chad sang his previous guitar part next in the style of 'If I Was Your Girlfriend' by Prince crossed with a moomin. This happens at 0.37. Then the next bit is where it all kicks off in the imaginary cartoon titles where Hong Kong Phooey starts shooting at Dick Dastardly with a gun n shit like that. It could be called a chorus on a shitter record or if it wasn't so deliberately cheesy, which is apt coz the next guitar is played thru a 'big cheese' pedal. At 0.47 I record a guitar effect using the TC Electronics fireworx box. One more sample from the Hanna Barbera CD is recorded at 0.51, then Chad plays a cartoon stylee lick thru the Lovetone Big Cheese Pedal. At 0.54 is a Hanna Barbera sample under where the tremolo guitar starts, recorded thru a Zoom Pedalboard tremolo effect. One last Hanna Barbera sample in recorded at 0.59. Apart from that we pretty much jammed it. The uncarved blocks lyric refers to a child like person with no thoughts of its own formed yet, hence an uncarved block. Someone who can be moulded in any way you want, hence in a song about childrens cartoons.

I play the guitar riff on a Gretsch Country Gentleman thru an AC30 that starts at 1.30 and runs right thru going an octave up at 2.00 minutes. It can be seen in the studio photos referred to earlier. I play bass as well as far as I recollect in an overdub later. At 2.20 Chad joins in on vintage Fender Jaguar thru his Zoom effects box with the high sound, we recorded all this live in Studio 1 at Olympic. Chad plays the guitar under where the vocal comes in next. I start playing on my Gretsch at 3.37. At 4.24 Chad does some weird trumpet sounding guitar sound that goes on for a while. The lyrics I sing varisped up in the background starting at 4.37 are "IS THAT I CANNOT DESCRIBE WHAT IS SUCH A PERFECT ILLUSTRATION OF THE OPPOSITE AND COMPLEX ARROGANCE WE DISPLAY TO PROTECT ONE ANOTHER". It's all out of time with the music, great! It was just about what was going on at the time, a sarcastic dig at all this Taoist bullshat being portrayed. Me arse. Then I sing the 'Think too Much' bit because I'd started to overthink this whole track and because I tend to overthink everything in general anyway, to my detriment mostly. I was overthinking the idea of the pastiche cartoon theme tune followed by a more moody backing track to go with the more serious interpretation of the lyrics I had in my notebook. At 5.04 it goes back into the groove. I play my Gretch still, I DI my telecaster I think straight into the SSL desk and Chad plays the loud dry guitar part over my gretsch part with it, but it's overdubbed later. At 5.42 Chad's zoom part comes back in as part of the live backing track we put down. Now there are 3 guitar parts all swirling round, it's fucking awesome listening to it stoned, a great magic moment if you can concentrate on all 3 guitars between 5.42 and 6.20 at the same time, for just those 38 seconds. 38 seconds of tuneless drivel as one critic put it. LOL! We tried the same trick on the opening track of 'Kleptomania', 'Getting Your Way', the riffs whirling round the stereo spectrum for a short time after the second chorus, though we never got to finish that track, it would have been amazing if we had have..." - Paul Draper, Six Blog

Song Credits


Shotgun (Album Version)

I fully understand the shotgun in my pillow

Is no uncarved block at hand Life is sweet but not it seems for Buddha There's a shotgun in his hand

Shotgun, shotgun, shotgun, shotgun

The nature of uncarved blocks Is how to describe what's hard to describe

The simplest things, the quietest The child-like simplicity Everything I need to hear Positive the way I view

The simple of thought inherit the earth (Shotgun blows) Like Winnie, the Pooh, confucianist rules (Shotgun blows) Oblivious in what I do, deliberate the way I live (Shotgun blows, shotgun blows, shotgun blows)

Shotgun blows, shotgun blows, shotgun blows Shotgun blows

The nature of un-carved blocks Is how to describe what's hard to describe Vinegar taster says, "More force I apply, more trouble I make" (Is that I cannot describe why it is) (Such a perfect illustration of the opposite) (And complex arrogance we display to protect one another)

Think too much, think too much Think too much, think too much

lyrics by: Dominic Chad