Secret Songs Chapter One

February 26th, 2008

While in college. I made the unfortunate mistake of learning how to play the guitar. It really could not be helped. I was a resident assistant in a fine arts dorm, it was the nineties, and you had three choices. Dye your hair black and go goth, hole up in the studio and draw, or you could carry around a guitar case.

This was an easy choice for me. I found the whole goth thing deeply disturbing, I can’t draw to save my life, so I went with the guitar. And strangely, it took. I mean I actually learned how to play. Not like a real guitar player…like John Mayer… or some other real guitar player, but I did learn. I learned how to play chords and how to finger pick and how to do a few scales. I mostly learned by sitting around with other guitar players and learning one little trick at a time. Slowly, I started to play whole songs, familiar songs, songs I knew. I wasn’t really playing them – but I was figuring out the chords and trying to do interesting things in between the chords. Then I started writing my own songs.

I know – I know – UGH! Is there anything worse than someone writing their own songs? But I had no intention of ever playing these tunes for anyone else. They were my little secret. I played them when I was completely alone, very quietly, in hushed tones. I don’t remember any of those early songs but I am sure they were pure crap. They were full of angst and gut tearing stupidity. I remember one of them was called “Jesus is Bigger” and the first line went like this… “Jesus is bigger than state policy… Jesus is bigger than my boss and my job.”


That was a very serious song!

I had a boyfriend back then who was a musician. He played the cello and also the guitar and he wrote songs all the time. He was kind of flashy about it. He actually made other people, including me, listen to his songs. He was a huge Bob Dylan fan so his songs usually sounded like Dylan tunes. They all had six billion verses and I usually dozed off before the end, snapping to wakefulness as I head the last strum. I did not even play my songs for the boyfriend… at first…then I got stupidly emboldened by his flaunting his songs all over the place, so I played a few for him. My songs were better than his, only because they were SHORTER! This sad fact eventually led to our break up. Not really – actually he dumped me for a much better songwriter and the two of them got married and formed a band that got signed to a real label and everything. She did have an incredible voice. I think they might have made it, if he had let her be the star, but he was just not the kind of guy that could do that, last I heard – the band had broken up.

Anyway – I started writing and singing and eventually made the ridiculous decision to make my own record. That is what you say if you are in the biz. You say “make a record”. You do not say “make a CD”. No one “makes a CD”. You make a record. So I made a record. One of the songs on the record was called “Whatever Happened to Nancy Drew” which was a song about guess…no, guess…can you guess?.. Yeah – it was about Nancy Drew and whatever happened to her… Because I love Nancy… very much… she is my hero. So I named this record “Famous Girl Detective” and then I had to shoot a cover for it.

To shoot the cover, I decided that I would pose as Nancy on a case. I bought some really cute vintage outfits and convinced my sister to take some pictures of me in these outfits doing some typical Nancy Drew things… you know, like sleuthing. I basically had to drag April by her hair to get her to take these photos. I don’t know why she was so resistant other than the fact that she is just a general pain in the butt, but once we got going, we had a good time. Or at least, I had a good time. As you can see from the pictures.

Here is Nancy chasing down some hard core criminals.
Elegant and graceful even when in a hurry!

Here is Nancy creeping on stone in vintage plaid.

Here is Nancy hunting… for fossils?

Oh dear! Nancy is either crying or laughing.
But Nancy was so serious and so dedicated!
How can she be laughing when there are people to save
and bad guys to catch?!?

Oh thank goodness! A change of outfits and she is back on track! But she does seem a bit confused. It would appear she does not know which way to go.

What? Belly laugh with penny loafers and magnifying glass?

Nancy! Pull yourself together!

This is a bit more Martha Stewart than Nancy Drew.

And this one is pure Rechelle. A much younger, skinnier, vintage version, but me none the less. I love Nancy Drew, but I could never rise to her lofty heights. Just not serious enough.


  • Natalie:

    How do you feel about the Bobsey Twins? What about the Boxcar Kids?

  • Donna Boucher:

    These are amazing fun hilarious pictures!!!You just seem like the funnest person Rechelle.Can I be your friend?You would make me wet my pants. No doubt.Well, I guess that not really the way to make friends, is it?Oh well.p.s. I will bring my camera and take more pictures of you.

  • Crunchy Chicken:

    The mustang photos are always particularly beautiful. You don’t see THAT every day, and yes, it may be a cliche, but they are spirited.Oops. Wrong blog…

  • Nicola:

    Really beautiful photographs, April did a great job of catching YOU, with your Nancy Drew spirit and all.

  • PAT:

    You just get better and better! Pat

  • Antique Mommy:

    I love Nancy Drew. And I love this post, it made me laugh. You look great in Vintage Nancy Drew BTW.

  • Rocks In My Dryer:

    You are just too cute. Love that!

  • Maria:

    Ah, youth. Great photos. Really. I loved the laughing ones. And to hell in a handbasket with youth, I’d like to think you’d/we/I would still run out and pose like Nancy Drew! I am in agreement with Natalie, here, tho..I’d kinda like to see the Boxcar Kids. And if you were Nancy was April Georgie (was that her name…gosh I can’t remember…she wasn’t memorable…)And the biggest question is: CAN WE HEAR THE RECORD YOU MADE??? Really. can we? Can you post it?? I want to hear those rockin’ chords and the great lyrics that broke you up with your boyfriend who couldn’t share limelight.

  • annie:

    I too was a die hard Nancy Drew fan. The books were always so mysterious and always a little spooky. I would lay on my bed reading and my dad, knowing I was in my room reading, would burst in and scare me half to death, just for a good laugh.

  • Pamelotta:

    Wow, that was a very vulnerable post. You’re really sharing your deepest secrets, now. The pictures are great. I’m sure the “album” is great, too! I would love to hear it!My husband, the songwriter, would kill me if I ever shared any of his early stuff. And if he ever did make a record, there would be no picture of him on the front. Well, maybe his hands playing the piano. But no face shots, for sure.

  • Lori Shaffer:

    You can hear Rechelle’s record on i-Tunes. It’s worth a listen, people. Start with “Close to Home” and “How Things Are.” Those are my favorites.Give the girl some royalties so she can quit her dayjob that she hasn’t started yet!

  • April:

    Pain in the BUTT? Uh, could it have been because I had just taken care of four tiny kids for two days, while you were off in the studio being all “Nancy”? I recall that’s when we started calling Ethan, Screamin’ E.Yeah, your welcome. Now, for my bossy part. Link the nice people to CD baby so they can hear your tunes and……PURCHASE a CD.BTW, I used to hate the song “Hello Stranger” and dad gum it, I can’t stop singing it around the house. Also, Ellen is very tired of listening to Aunt Rechelle, but Seth sings along with you. Ike the ever optimist says, “Hey! That’s Aunt Rechelle” every stinkin’ time we get in van and listen to your CD, he thinks your coming out of the radio. You should know your nephews think your a big star.

  • Junebug:

    Hilariouly good photos!

  • Junebug:

    Hilariouly good photos!

  • Brenda Kula:

    No, maybe not serious enough. But certainly funny and full of laughs! Thank goodness you’re you and not Nancy Drew! Uh-oh a rhyme. Maybe that’s a new song!Brenda

  • Tempered Woman:

    Def share the links!I think it’s fabulous you have these pics cause you look gorgeous and happy. Very fun~

  • noble pig:

    Could you please put a recording of this record on the site. PLEAZEEEE!

  • Mary:

    The pictures are so cute, Rechelle. I was a big Nancy Drew fan, too. I think those books are the reason I ended up being a lifetime reader. Can you sell the CD on your blog? I’m sure some of us would love to have a copy.xoxo,mary

  • Jenni:

    Those pictures are a hoot! It looks like you had a great time doing them. We love your song here:o)

  • Rechelle:

    Crunchy – I am going to duct tape a breast pad to your face cause every time you comment…I start to lactate.April – Tell Ellen to stick it! She needs to listen to my record until she starts to appreciate fine music!Everyone else – I like you the best.

  • Crunchy Chicken:

    Well, I suppose that’s better than losing bowel control like you usually do.

  • Nancy:

    Nancy you are too funny. Um, I meant Rechelle. Whatever. You make me laugh!

  • cndymkr / jean:

    I loved the photos. Those sock just complete the image of Nancy Drew.

  • Julianne:

    Thank you. You made me laugh out loud for the first time today.

  • Tracy:

    I’m slowly getting through your WHOLE blog but this post made me LTIC(laugh till I cried!)I’m just glad no one came in here while I was reading that post! They already think I’m not all there or as my oldest son told me “You have rocks in your head”Those pictures! Only someone who has read every single Nancy Drew book more than once could truly appreciate them! Good job!