World Next Door Music

an ASCAP Music Publishing Company

Hour of Life | Written for the film Speed Bump

Written & Performed by Gerald Martin Davenport

© 1999 Geoffrey Hamilton & Gerald Martin Davenport

Gerald‘s Story updated: February 25, 2023

Sean Michael Beyer wanted music for his movie Speed Bump, similar to “Everybody Hurts” by R.E.M.

I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to work with Geoffrey since I wanted to write a song with him for quite some time. Although he never actually wrote or recorded a song before, he agreed to try it.

Since Geoff worked odd hours and lived in Sacramento, it was hard for us to get together; therefore, his first draft, which was sent to me via email, fit so well with the music that I had started writing. I told Geoff that was perfect and enough to write two songs, he still sent me more. The first draft was basically the song with a little rearranging. He wanted to hear it; writing lyrics to a melody and rhythm that you have not heard is difficult, although I have never tried it, Geoff did well, very well in fact. We only had one minor change in the chorus.

I am proud and honored to have been able to write with Geoff, we have written other things together since. He is quite talented and a very good friend.

The song is 3:20 long and was a hit in the movie and added another dimension, it is like they were made for each other. Sean cut it in several places, and the visuals were stunning with the music.”
- gerald

Geoff's Story (August 28, 2002)

“Gerry asked me to say a few words about writing Hour of Life. I hadn‘t done any song writing prior to this, which is the reason this little project interested me. I approached the writing the same way I would start a poem or short story — I wrote every thought that came into my head. A few pages later, I stopped to sift through the endless ramblings and garbage. One phrase, “…for another hour of life…” stood out. We eventually crafted the song around that phrase.

I have a problem with songwriting — the rhyme and meter expected of a pop song often leads to a songwriter trying to satisfy musical requirements at the expense of storytelling. Compromise is the only real solution for a hack like myself (after all, I am not Sting) but finding that level of lyrical compromise is a difficult thing. I could easily write a song with a powerful story and no musical sense, or a nice ditty with no meaning.

This is where Gerry comes in. He prevented me from wandering off into musical badlands with frequent suggestions and critiques. In the end, I think the song works well for the movie it was written for and is highly listenable. Gerry's music suprised me — I had no clue as I wrote lyrics what the finished song would sound like. Now, after a couple years passed, I still like hearing it and playing it.