Roger Street Friedman Remembers Home on "Pour Me Another" (premiere)

Photo: Laura Crosta

Americana artist Roger Street Friedman delivers a nostalgic western ballad set in Texas for the third song in his online residency with PopMatters.

Continuing his four-month online residency with PopMatters, Americana artist Roger Street Friedman brings us "Pour Me Another". Taking a bit of the rambling style of an old-school folk ballad, the song is an ode to Friedman's parents and that often indescribable feeling of a home you really can't go back to, since it's in the past. He takes us to a Tex-Mex restaurant in the Lone Star State itself—a far away from his own home in Long Island—to deliver us this nostalgic, romantic western.

"Pour Me Another" is Friedman's third video in a set of Cellar Sessions performances shot at New York's City Winery. As always, he is joined by drummer Jim Toscano, guitarist Frank Ferrera, bassist Matt Schneider, and keyboardist Steve Uh for this one-shot take performance. Whereas the first two songs ("Puffs of Smoke" and "Everyday") of his set could perhaps fairly be said to be more of a means to get his audience grooving, "Pour Me Another" takes a much more reflective view that showcases an entirely different side of Friedman's masterful capabilities as a songwriter.

Friedman tells PopMatters, "I was just free-writing on the subject of home and thinking back to my suburban home and my childhood there. One enduring memory is the sound of dishes clinking as my folks were setting the table for Sunday breakfast, the smell and sound of sizzling bacon and pancakes cooking, along with my dad's record player playing some great classical piece or jazz standards, or folk music."

"So I was just writing and the phrase "no place like home" jumped into my head. Since both my folks are gone now, and my childhood home is gone too, it kind of took on another connotation from the usual one. It's gone, so there is literally no place like home. The song also talks about how everything changes over time. The road behind my house was two lanes when I was a kid and now it's six lanes! I thought back to when my brothers and I were packing up my mom's house after she died, and the story evolved into two brothers who just packed up their folks house down in Texas and are at a Tex-Mex joint drinking margaritas and toasting to their parents. I thought Texas was a more romantic place to set the scene than Long Island!"

Of this performance, in particular, he says, "The vibe was great, and we had a blast. It was enjoyable. The crew was great. I couldn't say I had a favorite, although "Pour Me Another" was really nice..."

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