Saturday, August 30, 2008
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Friday, August 22, 2008
Since this is a songwriting blog, every so often I’ll talk about one of these songs and why I think it’s great. Or at least why I love it without it’s achieving greatness.
Monday, August 18, 2008
I get to NYC so seldom that I tend to hit the same great places that are familiar to me, rather than do too much exploring. I was with a friend who was in town from
We were in time for the 10pm act at Rockwood, and I said hi to Ken Rockwood (the proprietor and founder of “The Professor and Maryann,” an indie-rock duo), before the set. The act was a female singer/songwriter, piano-based, who sang pop-py songs about love and relationships. My friend pointed out that her playing and voice were very similar to Regina Spektor, though we agreed the songs weren’t anywhere near as interesting.
At The Living Room, the 10pm act was running over, two
I’m not sure exactly what the act was called – I think it was “Reynaldo The” fronted by Aldo Perez. Perez has a rock band called “Psycho the Clown,” a small group called “The Reynaldo The Trio” (it would be Reynaldo The Great, but apparently Reynaldo is not so great), and an avant-garde theatre enterprise called “Theater The.” There may be more incarnations, but we were apparently watching some permutation of "The Reynaldo The Ensemble."
We had no idea what to expect. There were six of them. A keyboardist who looked like a dressed-down Brad Pitt by way of Elton John mixed with mad scientist. An older fellow on the drums, in judges’ robes. A beefy KGB-agent type who was some sort of valet and general factotum, and played bongos and washboard. A tuba player dressed as a refugee from a Chekhov short story. A French maid who played the clarinet, bells and was the main backup singer. And Aldo Perez as Reynaldo, a shambling mound of wild energy and pompostity. He's described elsewhere on the web as the love child of Jim Carrey and John Waters.
I would describe the act, but it was indescribable. It was more of a modern clown show than anything else. An opening mime bit ended with Perez playing the nose flute maniacally. Odd musical pieces. The valet/factotum wound up being the company rapper. They sang “I’m My Own Grandpa” and “Oh What A Night,” all interspersed with “Reynaldo” being a general horses’ patootie while the rest of the band shot him glares. Clearly there was a backstory to the act that we weren’t seeing.
Special mention to Jenny Lee Mitchell, the French maid, who is operatically trained and could do just about anything with her voice. After several bits featuring her refined tones (which were out of keeping with Reynaldo’s musical wishes), she wound up being the best rapper in the bunch. A glance at her resume shows a lot of experience in physical comedy.
Apparently, Aldo Perez and company perform at the Living Room many Saturday nights and have several theatre and music ventures going. If you’re in the city, they’re worth a look. If you’re not, you can catch glimpses of them on YouTube.
Friday, August 15, 2008
"Punch My Ticket" was named a Finalist for Rock. This means it wasn't the Winner, but was one of the top five entries. And since they don't list the writers or titles in alphabetical order, it looks like we came in third.
(They didn't list Ray Sharp as the co-writer, and I've e-mailed them to add his name. His name *was* on the entry, but they only listed the submitting writer)
I had one other song in the competition -- it's possible it's a runner-up but I won't know that until sometime next week.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
I am working on a lyric with an artist right now, or at least the artist’s representative, and some rewrites were requested. Something wasn’t quite right with the last line of the first verse. It was all of six words, seven syllables (eight if you count the grace syllable at the beginning).