To Hell With You available on Friday (April 9th, 2013)
...heeEy!....as promised, got a biiiiyg ol' updater for ya!...
..for starters, i have a new Redhead Record Club song available for you right the frick nOw on PledgeMusic - "Trust Me" - 2013 veRsioN..
...i worked with R.R.C. Pledge-r Nick Oliver on this one who recorded drums from his home-studio in the UK...they really turned out greAt (thAnx NiCK!)...my good buddy John Fields, who produced the original Redhead, played bass and some great wah-wah guitar..and my ooLd school homie Bill "show 'em how it's done" Guerra played the solo just like back in the day!...we always played it faster live, so, i finally got to capture that energy in this version..and the extended solo also reflects some of the things we used to do live...wheeEee...hope you like iT!
..THEN, thEn, (theN) - "To Hell With You" will be available on PledgeMusic on Friday!..my new album. ready. for Pledgers. to listen to. First. whaAa?.. ..if you haven't already (and thanx soO much if you have!) put in your Pledge nOw and get the digital album as soon as it's uploaded...
Click here to Pledge Now
...this record has been a long-time in the making...initially i had wanted to put something out pretty rapidly after FOUR (2010), but it was important to me that i explore and expand the boundaries of my music (and the genres that i am often associated with in general)...as you might imagine, that quixotic journey took some time to traverse..and of course i had so many opportunities to work on a tuN of other great music with many other wonderful people along the way (which lead to exiting new music for other artists - and for myself!)....but in the end, this is a record that i'm genuinely proud of...i think it continues the musical, lyrical, and production investigations set-up by my debut "Headroom" in a way that hasn't happened since that record...anyway..i hope you enjoy listening to it as much as i enjoyed making it...please don't hesitate to let me know what you think...
here's a sneak peak at the track listing:
To Hell With You
All Downhill From Here
In My Own Little World
I Have To Have You
It's Not Over ('Til It's Over And Done)
Grasping At Straws
Bottom Of My Heart (feat. Alexz Johnson)
Endwell (feat. Justin Tranter from Semi Precious Weapons and Mike Taylor)
Odd Future (feat. Robyn "The Bank" Troup from Cadillacs In Space)
Won't Make It Out Alive
..i worked on a bunch of #ToHellWithYou (<-- twitter Hashtag!) with the one and only Ducky Carlisle, as well as my now-longtime live-cohort Joe Seiders who never really got to collab on a record much before this (he did a buuunch of amazing stuff)...and as you can see above, T.H.W.Y. features some pretty radical guest appearances (and i do mean "radical" in all senses of the word)...there are lots of other amazing collaborators on this record like Joshua Moore, David Mead, Ben "Wondashow" Romans, The Section Quartet, Steve Scott and the list goes on....i will of course be talkin' 'bout this new record in the next few blasts, but for now, a couple of notes....1) the liner notes of #ToHellWithYou WiLL feature the Kickstarter names who backed FOUR with that exclusive (thAnx for your patience!), and 2) the album release date for iTunes and world distribution has not been set yet, so...i dunno...if you want the rekkid...get 'er on Pledge eehh??!
LA RECORD RELEASE SHOW ANNOUNCEMENT:
MAY 9th at The ROXY, 9pm
ticket go on sale later this week!
..i'll be opening for the incrrrredible RUMOURS Ultimate Fleetwood Mac Tribute show (featuring Taylor Locke & Ned Brower amongst others) - so this is a night not to be missed (as they truLy rule)..expect guests, lights, lots of new material, etC..!!..!!
..this will be my biggest LA release show, so pLeeease do come on out and support...i'm going to try and pull out all the stops for this one..
moRe on this soon, but mark your calendars, and hope to see you theRe..
IN OTHER NEWS:
...i'll be speaking on a panel next week at the ASCAP Expo with Benji Rogers from PledgeMusic, Bob Moczydlowsky from Topspin, Mike King from Berklee Online and Liz Leahy from Section 101...come on out and hear what's the haps:
How to Earn Revenue & Fund Your Project
(Presented by Berkleemusic.com)
Thursday April 18th at 3:30pm
Hollywood Ballroom #2
Learn about the ASCAP Expo
...lastly for today, i'm a little behind in sharing some of the new music that's available that i worked on with some amazingly talented indie bands...these few have been out for a while and i gotta give them shout outs:
check out Marc Martel on iTunes
...i worked on 3 songs for this Marc Martel EP "The Prelude." ...i co-wrote the tunes with Marc and John Fields and also co-produced. Marc is seRiously one of thEE best singers i have ever worked with..(no wonder he made it into the Queen Extravaganza experience..). my tunes are: "Our Love Remains," "Perfect World," and "8th Wonder"
NAKIA! (on iTunes)
NAKIA! ...gotta love it when one of your old friends does a helluva job on The Voice and then wants to work on writing some music together. this is a live version of a tune we wrote together called "Dream Big" (hOpe you likey..)
My Radio on iTunes
..aaaand lastly i got a chance to work with an ol' Boston buddy JP Powell and his band My Radio (you may remember we played some east coast shows with them last fall)..JP and i worked on a bunch of songs together in LA, we co-wrote and i produced: "Life's A Bitch Slap," "Bricks and Mortar," "Life Moves On," and "On The Other Hand"
..please check out all of these tunes if ya can and support some dern good indie acts!
still lOts more news to come, but i feel like i gotta keep these updates somewhat short before i lose ya to cats on paleo diets and Kardashian waistlines on buzzZfeed....
Somebody Else... (February 14th, 2013)
...hAppy Valentine's Day urrybuddy!
..i know you're all busy passing out your Hello Kitty hologram lenticular v-day cards right now, but, just checkin' in with some newses in bleu-land..
...firsterly - i debuted "Somebody Else" a *brand new version* for the Redhead Record Club last week on Pledge Music, so if you've pledged at $40+ make sure to download the song now, here
for those of you who would like to hear the new version, click on Mckayla Maroney below to watch the meme-musing lyric video on youtoobs..
Somebody Else lyric video on YouTube
...if you like this new version of Somebody Else and like the meme-tastic lyric video, feel-free to share it on Facebucks & Tweetters for me eh..?!
....and, if you'd like to know more about the creation of this new version, etc. watch my "Somebody Else" Pledge video update here
..pLus, i'm announcing a *NEW* bonus reward! ...as always, i'd really like to get all my new music into the hands of as many people as possible, and my new goal is to hit just 400 Pledges.. can we dooo eet?... thanx so much for your help..
..if we can hit 400 pledges by Feb. 28th - i will tack on - to ALL pledges - for FREE - a bonus LIVE EP - "Live from Passim with the String Octet"
...this was a very special performance back in 2010 when i was on tour for FOUR, i played 2 shows at Passim in one night with a full string octet and did a live recording (full pro-audio style courtesy of Ducky Carlisle) and video-shoot, and i think it deserves a release.... there will be 5 songs on this Live EP...
if we hit the goal of 400 Pledges by Feb. 28th, i will have this EP edited, mixed and mastered and delivered to you all (prob take a couple-a months to get this done), but if we don't hit the goal, then this free bonus will not be available...
sooooo....hit me!...you can Pledge here now:
"To Hell With You" digital street date for all Pledgers is: April 12th!
in other news, i just got back from playing my first ever Sundance/Park City showcases and speaking at the Macworld/iWorld conference in San Francisco, and i gotta say, both were great fun...
Sundance is one of the coolest festivals i've been invited to, and the people who attended and watched the ASCAP Music Lounge showcases were wonderful... everyone watches (quietly), and cheers, and basically - for 2 performances i felt like i was on top of my li'l solo-show game..so if you were there...thAnk yOu....
ASCAP Music Cafe at Sundance
Bleu: featured in Billboard Magazine from Sundance
then, Macworld/iWorld in SF....it was a frickin' techmology orgasm (saw soO many cool new gadgest/aps, etc.)...it was fun speaking about modern laptop producing, a bit about the new music biz (songwriting/fan-funding, etc.) and the gear that a "home studio" guy like me works with, vs. a "pro" studio...i basically love blabbing-away about this kind of stuff, so if you ever see me, don't be shy......here's a tiny piece of press from the event + a video i made on Vine showing some of the amazing geeky awesomeness from the tradeshow
moar music? yesss, moooower!!
...two words: MIKE TAYLOR ...his motto is "Word, Lets Get it!" - kind of like Nike "Just Do It" i think(?) - well, if anyone's gonna Get It, it's MIKE TAYLOR..he is one hard working monster..and just an all-round great guy (he shot the "Bleusikal" video fyi!)... we've been working on an EP of songs for a while, but he's debuted a single this week on Artist Direct with a fab video to go along...i would be in your debt if you could check this song out, i'm pretty proud of it and think it represents the type of indie-rock-pop that i'm psyched about working on right now...
Watch Mike Taylor on YouTube
Buy "DWNTWN KDS" on iTunes
written by Mike Taylor & Bleu, produced by Bleu
..but here's something else FUN. (like the band?)... do you like Downton Abbey as much as i do??? (i knooooW, i got sucked in..it's a soap, but, i love it...) - please watch & share DOWNTON ABBEY KIDS (featuring footage from the show & Mike Taylor's new song...)
watch Downton Abbey Kids on YouTube
THEN --- Baby Come Back! (remember the 1970's song by Player?) - i doO (..love that era) and i was thrilled to contribute a cover version of this tune for the "Drink A Toast To Innocence: A Tribute to Lite Rock" compilation release...you can pre-order a copy of the compilation right now on Kickstarter for just $15...The comp is doing well on Kickstarter, almost at half of their goal, and features other musicians you might know like: Mike Viola, Kelly Jones, Linus Of Hollywood, Willey Wisely, David Myhr & so many more...i've heard some of the songs and, let's just say, i'll personally be spinning it constantly.....watch the video to check out bits of all the tunes!
a Kickstarter album release
weLp, i'll be back soon with more news for sure, couple of appearances listed below:
March 5th - Berklee Seminar in LA with Pat Pattison (!) at The Village studios - more info coming soon
April - i'll be a panelist at the ASCAP EXPO - an event on fan-funding, more info soon
..now go give out some candy kisses!..
p.s. Pick up the current edition of SXSWorld Magazine, Feb. 2013 issue, i'm in it!
Ordinary Extraordinary Love (January 8th, 2013)
...heLLoO..and a veRy hapPy nEw yeAr to yoUu!
..some friends and i made a lovely li'l excursion to Joshua Tree.. went to the Integratron (<-- look it uP) and communed with the aliens (really!) - and we stayed at Kate Pierson's vintage-airstream trailer-park oasis "Kate's Lazy Desert" (<-- check it out..it's pretty neato)…
happy new year!
..a fun li'l tid-bit for TONIGHT...I have a song on the hit ABC TV show Happy Endings (it's actually really freakin' funny if you haven't seen it)......you won't hear my voice though...here's the dealio…
....a friend of mine, Matthew Libman (who helped me put the L.E.O. CD out!), well, he's a writer on this hilarious show now and brought me in on this fun li'l gig....tonight's show features a fictional pop-star name Winne McCray (she's kinda like Britney Spears meets Katy Perry) and she goes coo-coo-pants during the episode..there's more to it than that, but, needless to say - everyone's singin' her "hit" song "Ordinary Extraordinary Love" - written by myself and Matthew....i produced the song too, and my friend Lindsey Ray sang iT....neat eh?..
listen to "Ordinary Extraordinary Love" on youtube
buy the single on iTunes
watch ABC Happy Endings TONIGHT at 9/8 Central
...for everyone who's been waiting for "Bottom Of My Heart" on PledgeMusic, wait no longer!...if you've Pledged $10 or more, you can download this new song off the album TODAY (right now).... "Bottom Of My Heart" is a duet featuring Alexz Johnson on co-lead-vocals and she helps to make me sound extrey smexy on this biatch...listen to the preview video here
..i just cAn't stop saying thank you to everyone who's Pledged....as of a few days ago we smashed what we did last time on Kickstarter...waaAaAA!..you guys are bee-yond amazing...i owe ya big time (and not just the reward packages)…
...p.s. almost aLL of the producer packages are gone on Pledge (so gets one if you wants one), and only 2 international house concerts are left...looks like i'll be traveling to Germany and Australia in the near future for house-concerts (whaAaT?)..i could not be any more excited....much more news on Pledge and the next REDHEAD RECORD CLUB song coming sooOn…
SAM FRAM-SiSCO...i am coming for yA…
...as i mentioned before, i will have a featured workshop/presentation at Macworld/iWorld 2013 in San Fran at the end of this month...my presentation is titled: Laptop, Drop and Roll Confessions of a Dining Room Producer with Bleu and i'll be on stage with Chris Breen, the Senior Editor of Macworld..talking about everything from running your own business as a songwriter, producer and independent artist to nitty-gritty talk on gear and tech used in daily music creation, old vs. new models in the music industry, songwriting and production craft, and how today's technology has influenced music collaboration and creation...see you there?..if anyone in SF would like to host a house concert while I'm in town, please hit me up aSaP...contact info is on the main page of my website..
Bleu at Macworld 2013
Thursday, January 31st
2:00 PM - 2:45 PM (with a short music performance afterwards!)
teCh taLk 2013!
...i aaLways say this, buut, i aaaLways mean it!...last but (definitely) nOt LEAST... freegin' JOHN OATES! (you know that living legend from the most successful recording duo of all time - Hall And Oates????)..
...weLL we just worked together on a song for his solo record!..and it was simply a fantastic experience..he's obviously talented, but, an incredibly gracious and open collaborator to-boot...and just a ridiculously generous and warm guy...truly can't say enough great things about him…
..John (are we on a first name basis?)..uh, Oates heard some of my brand new music recently (off of To Hell With You) and tracked me down (this in and of itself blew my mind)...we chatted via email for a couple months and he just came to LA so we could work together (?!?)...we wrote and recorded a song for his upcoming release called "Dirty Business" ...it's got some of the classic Philly-soul in it, with a modern (dare i say "bleu"sy) twist of course…
...weLL, i just can't wait for you to hear the tune.....once in a life-time experience (remind me to tell you some of the stories he told me!)..
.....oKey-dOke - much love to you and yours and here's to an amazle-tine two-thousand-thirteen!
Holidaze and a new special song for you! (December 11th, 2012)
...it's beginning to look a lOt like the hoLidaaAze.... aaAhhh..
..i'll probably say this every year from here on out - assuming the mayans were wrong - but, I seriously can't believe another year has flown by so dern quickly!..(time flies when y'er havin' fun i suppose..)
..weLL...it's been a spectacular year, and i want to wish everyone a truly wonderful holiday season, and as a thank you (tradition now) for being a part of my email list, i'm giving away another "song from the vault"...you can download "Thank You (Seiya)" here:
Download "Thank You (Seiya)"
i wrote this song as a reward for my last fan-funding (Kickstarter) campaign for a long-time fan (who's name of course is Seiya)...he asked for his song to be reminiscent of "Somebody Else" and that it be a "thank you" for all the support he has received from his family and friends over the years - which allowed him to have success in his life....sO hey, i thought, what better way to thank yoU gUys for all the support you've given mee over the years! (it's too perfect).... (this song will also be available on my Pledge Music project page as well)....hope you liKe..
Gift Pledging available!
...speaking of Pledge Music, didja know you can give a Pledge exclusive from "To Hell With You" & "Redhead Record Club" as a gift for the holidays? (there are lOts of options big 'n small)...It's called "Gift Pledging" and all you have to do is select "gift" under delivery options...your gift recipient will receive a notification of the gift and be able to log in and retrieve all the downloads just like everyone else!
PLuSsS!..when you give the gift of my tunes for the holidays this year, and if you Gift Pledge by Dec. 19th, I will send a holiday card to YOU and YOUR gift recipient as a special thanks for sharing my music...here's a *hint* at what the gift card might look like (hand drawn by me):
I'll write you & your gift recipient a special holiday message!
Get my holiday card with any Gift Pledge of $10 or more!
..a few other ideas for some holiday gifts from my pledge: - Gift someone a "Birthday song"!..A song of any type I'll write all about them
- A limited edition "To Hell With You" t-shirt - only $30
- Have a very special someone in your life who has always wanted to have a professionally produced song?..choose the "i'll produce your song" exclusive..
...aaand, speaking oF -- i put together a video for you from Ice Station Zebra in Boston, one of two studio locations you could join me at...it's a li'l tour of the best studio in New England and an insight into the mind of my best bud Ducky Carlisle..
watch the Ice Station Zebra studio tour on YouTube
...last (but never least) today, i thought I would post this podcast from when I stopped by "Steve Gorman Sports!" in Nashville...Steve's been a pal for years - amazing drummer (for the Black Crowes amongst others), writer, raconteur, and now sports-talk-radio-host (he's awesome too) --> (liSten to me talk about Sports! ???)
..weLp: a hiP-diPpy hoLidAng to yoU and yoUrs!...I'll be back soon with a new Redhead Record Club song and lots of fun news for 2013….
THANK YOU! (like the song - get iT!)
watch the BLeUSiKAL!
BLeUSiKAL (the mini musikal) - we did it again (November 15th, 2012)
...yesterday, i quietly launched a fan-funding campaign for my new record on Pledge Music and we hit our goal in 4 (FOUR) frAkin' hours... my mind is blown ...i genuinely didn't know how this thing was gonna go down a second time (honestly, i may have been more nervous than my first time) ..and you guys have proven (perhaps definitively) that this model works...i'm beyond moved...
..i would love for you to watch the video for my Pledge campaign...together with some amazing friends, i wrote, recorded and directed a wacky mini-musikal we're callin' the "BLeUSiKAL" (?!?) ..complete with shades of wonka and oz - biG thAnx to Kelly Jones, Mike Taylor, Allan Heinberg, and Jyrki for makin' the madness come to liiiFe..!
watch the BLeUSiKAL!
So what is happening???
i'm officially launching my new record TO HELL WITH YOU
aaaand, the REDHEAD RECORD CLUB (uwhhuAu? -->)..
..basically, through Pledge Music, you can pre-order a copy of "To Hell With You" - and by doing this, you will get to hear the music first (and own the physical copy before anyone else)..
...thennnn, to celebrate the TEN YEAR anniversary (?!) of my major-label debut Redhead, I am going to re-record brand new, re-imagined versions of all those songs...and by joining the Redhead Record Club "RRC" - you will receive these new songs month by month as they become available...
pluSs, like i did with Kickstarter, i am offering up a bunch of other extra exclusives...and much to my surprise and joy we've already sold a bunNch:
- play on a Redhead Record Club song..
- international house concerts!...
- birthday songs..
- handwritten lyric sheets (sold out!)
- i'll produce your 5 song EP (i've sold 2 of these already! ...seeeriioussly)
and, everyone who pledges gets some new music right away (take a look in the "pledge updates"):
- $10+ exclusive gets a download of "It's Not Over ('Til It's Over and Done)" from my new record "To Hell With You"
- $40+ exclusive gets "Searching For The Satellites" the 1st re-imagined "Redhead Record Club" song (!)
- $75+ exclusive and get "Jennifer (My Sweet Girl)" - a bonus track - there will be at least 6 bonus tracks (if not more)
...i'd like to mAssSiveLy THANK everyone who has already Pledged, and everyone who supported me on Kickstarter two years ago (it really is you guys who keep me going at this)...all of the backers from Kickstarter who should receive an album credit "thank you" for supporting "FOUR" - your names will be on the THWY digipak...
..i'd also like to thank all of the people who helped me make my BLeUSiKAL video: Kelly Jones, Mike Taylor, Jyrki Rantasuo, Stacey Peck, Allan Heinberg, Ducky Carlisle, Kiara Ana Perico, Darren Criss, Nick Goldston, Alicia Witt, Daniel Bedingfield, Taylor Locke, Lindsey Ray, John Fields, Chris Mann, David Mead, Dan Wilson, Wonda$how, and Tim Adams and Mike ViOla!..wowzA!
..if you've read this far & haven't checked out the Pledge yet..dOo eeEt -->
(big thanks to everyone at Pledge toO)
Lastly, if you're in NYC or BOSTON, i've got just 2 shows left on my 1st east coast run to support THWY...it's been fun, and the low-string-section is kiLLin' it!...thAnks so (so) much to Max Toste, Kiara Ana Perico and Isaiah Gage for backing me up on this tour (not to mention My Radio and Air Traffic Controller!!)
11/15 Rockwood Music Hall, New York City
ATC - 7:30pm
Bleu - 8:30pm
11/17 Great Scott, Boston
MY Radio - 9:30pm
Bleu - 10:30pm
ATC - 11:30pm
VOTE FOR ME in the BMA's! "Best Boston Artist who Doesn't Live In Boston
live from Iota Club & Cafe, Arlington VA, photo by David Hintze
To Hell With You on SoundCloud
To Hell With You (October 24th, 2012)
...yUp..it's (r)October aLready..probably one of the best months of the year tho'...the weather is perfect, and it means we're just about a month away from breakin' out the nOg (plus, there's halloweee-eeen)…
..weLL - i've got a pretty neat li'l tour startin' in a couple weeks on the east coast (and some south) and i really hope you can join me...i'm hitting the highways (and byways?) with Air Traffic Controller and My Radio (both of whom i produced, have known for years, and lOve)..and... aaAnd...i'm bringing this crAzy LOw-string-section with me! (viola, cello, and standup-bass!)...i'm pretty super excited about it....my bass-player from the Redhead-days Max Toste is joining me, and JP from My Radio used to play in the old-Bleu band too..
..what else...oOHh! i've been working on a new freakin' collection of songs for weLL over a year now...it's pretty ambitious, but all the bits and pieces are finally starting to come together, and from here on out i should be releasing more and more news on my 5th official "bleu" release...which...is going to be called:
TO HELL WITH YOU (<-- don't take it personally)..
..so, while i'm on tour in November you'll get to hear some new songs from TO HELL WITH YOU (including the title track), as well as some cool new arrangements of old tunes (sOo psyched about the strings)..
buy tickets: http://www.bleutopia.com/tour/
...this is what i miGht look like on tOur (photo from a music showcase last night in Laurel Canyon LA)
Listen to two new songs from TO HELL WITH YOU right here:
To Hell With You on SoundCloud
..Please do a guy a favor, share these songs if you like 'em, word of mouth for a chap like me means a lot…
...in other news, i've had some exciting work come my way in the world of TV...i worked on an original song for an episode of the hit ABC comedy Happy Endings (which i lOve)!..the episode runs towards the end of the year and i will be sure to let you know when to watch the episode...all i can say is...something funny happens (deRr)..
..and..i don't think i mentioned this yet in an email, i wrote and produced a song for the ginormo 80s band Glass Tiger (Don't Forget Me When I'm Gone..remember that one?) ...best band name....i wrote the tune "I Take It Back" with lead-singer Alan Frew (great guy), and it is featured on their Hits compilation that came out this summer, check it out, they played the song live on their summer tour with Roxette (who also ruLe)...
"I Take It Back" written & produced by Bleu on iTunes
...and don't forget to pick up the Chris Mann CDs that i worked on! "Home For Christmas" is available exclusively at Walmart and is a best seller there right now, i produced the first track "O Come All Ye Faithful" ...you can officially start playing Christmas music in a few weeks right? (my mom says the day after thanksgiving is acceptable..)..
buy on Walmart.com (or at any store)
pre-order on iTunes, available 10/30
..i am also psyched to have been involved with Chris' debut album "Roads" on Universal Faircraft Records...the CD comes out on 10/30 and features the song "Unless You Mean It" that i wrote and produced...
..just a reminder to check out the new Tristan Prettyman songs that i co-wrote, Come Clean and Unconditionally.. reaLLy in love with these jams (the whole record's pretty special actually)..
...plus, the Windsor Drive EP - i co-wrote and co-produced tracks 2-5 with John Fields...
.....last (but certainly not least) bits:
..i played the highly-regarded Daytrotter sessions aaages ago, and it finally got posted....this may be one of the only live recordings i have that i'm truly proud of..Joe and I were in rare form, and it's recorded beautifully on analogue-gear ...you can download it here
do i look like Keanu Reeves?
...and..if you're headed to the 2013 Macworld/iWorld event conference in San Francisco this January, look for my panel, more details on this soon but i'll be a featured presenter and will be chatting about all the ways i use my Mac to be a musician and a producer (just got the new MacBookPro retina and it's pretty nutty)...
..btw, how you like my new blue LED digital make-over?
...see you soon!
LA show on Monday plus a new song (August 23rd, 2012)
....this shin-dig is happening on Monday night in LA and you should be there!
..if there's ONE show all year i'd like you to come see, it's this one...(if you live in LA of course)
..new songs..string section...it's gonna be fun...
Monday August 27th
7pm - Jess Furman
8pm - Air Traffic Controller (LA debut!)
9pm - Bleu
then...SuperSoul Monday with Jason Joseph!
...to entice you a bit, here's a brand new song "It's Not Over ('Til It's Over & Done)" from my upcoming new album that i plan to release in Feb. 2013...(co-written with David Mead!)
Listen here on SoundCloud
Lastly...this is the latest in the "my buddy and me" video series with Joe Seiders...our first from Japan...it was shot by Kiku on her schmancy DSLR in Kyoto...you'll see our lovely hosts The Mayflowers (greAt powerpop band) in the frame for a second...this amazing MAIKO (noooot geisha) was the welcoming entertainment before an amazing zillion-course traditional meal that we were treated to (thAnx again guys!)..one of the coolest experiences i've ever had....anyway, i thought her haunting little dance (and the gawking balding onlookers) fit the mood of "I Have To Have You" perfectly...
Click to watch on YouTube
thAnks for readin'
August fun... (August 2nd, 2012)
....sheeesshhh...i haven't written an email blast since friggin' April!..did you miss me?
..i've missed yooUu!
..i have soO much news (that's why i haven't been able to write sooner..been a busy-bee-boy)...so i'm just gonna get right to all of it.. ....i have some shows coming up (LA!), a whoLe-bunchA album cuts with other bands, a BIG blog about my Japan-trip, a little band that could (and did) called Air Traffic Controller released their CD, and i've even got a love video for ya...
..on August 27th i will be making my (prodigal?) return to HOTEL CAFE!!...this will probably be my oNLy gig in LA for the rest of the year, so i would be lying if i said i'd be ok with you missing this show...i won't be...i'll be playing brand-new and old songs, aaaNd i'm attempting to put together the CELLO/VIOLA arrangements that i did on the east-coast at the end of last year...the night is going to be genuinely fab...i am playing with two talented acts who also happen to be my friends -- here's the detes:
Monday August 27th
7pm - Jess Furman
8pm - Air Traffic Controller (LA debut!)
9pm - Bleu
..if there's ONE show all year i'd like you to come see, it's this one...
....i'll also be announcing some November dates on the east coast soon, so please, stay tuned for these!
..noOw...onto a sLew of projects i have been sUper-luCky to be involved with (my day job is kinda fun, i can't deny...)
..i am veRy pLeAsed to announce that i have new songs with Tristan Prettyman, Chris Mann, Daniel Powter, Windsor Drive and Ryan Beatty (and these are only the ones i can officially announce right now)...feel free to check these songs out as they come out, release dates below:
7/24 Ryan Beatty "Because Of You" EP - i co-wrote "Simple Song" with Ryan and my long-time collabo John (Strawberrius) Fields....Ryan debuted at #9 on the iTunes charts!..he's a wunderkind darling of Ryan Seacrest..
buy on iTunes
8/14 Daniel Powter "Turn On The Lights" - i co-wrote "Crazy All My Life" (again, with Daniel & John Fields) ..if you don't immediately recognize the name Powter..he had that crazy international #1 smash "Bad Day" a few years ago..
pre-order on Amazon
9/25 Tristan Prettyman "Cedar + Gold" - i co-wrote "Come Clean" and "Unconditionally" with Tristan ...this record was produced by Greg Wells (Adele, Katy Perry, Mika) and iit iiis gooorgeous...veRy proud of these songs..
pre-order on Amazon
9/25 Windsor Drive "Wanderlust" EP - i co-wrote & co-produced tracks 2-5 ..another collab with the band and John Fields..we kinda took this one from the ground up...these guys are hip, yet still very musical..i think you'll really love it..
pre-order on their website
10/6 Chris Mann "White Christmas" EP - i'll have a song on here i produced.. ...Chris Mann just had an amazing run on The Voice, and, those of you who've been following know that i've been working with him for years....aaanyway, he just sent me video from nashville yesterday of a 27-piece string-section playing a beautiful arrangement that our pal Steve Lu wrote for this (it's "Oh Come All Ye Faithful" by the way)..it was a tear-jerker...you can cross a couple aunts off your "what to get for christmas" list i think...
10/30 Chris Mann - full album release - i'll have a song on here i wrote & produced.. ...this is a song i wrote totally on my own, and had even considered putting on a Bleu-record at one point...i'm extremely happy that it's finally found a great home..it was always one of my faves...
..check 'em out people, let me know whatcha think!..
..i'd also like to take a moment to highlight the new record "NORDO" from Air Traffic Controller...many of you know i've been developing this band for years now...i love Dave Munro and the whole crew like they were my brutha's and sistah's (we just went to freakin' 6-Flags for my birfday fer chrisake!)... "NORDO" came out last month, the press has been astounding, and as a piece of work, it's one of my proudest moments as producer of the whole album...so...i would really love for you to check it out (please):
Buy on iTunes!
...just this week a track from "NORDO" has "popped" a bit and has hit #1 on this website called the Hype Machine..it's pretty cool, check it out here:
Ready for some Japan-ness?
...in May, Joe Seiders and i met up with Thistime Records to play 7 shows for my Japanese release of "Four/Besides"...we had more fun than you could possibly imagine. ..
..i've written a whole 2 page blog of my trip..it's mostly a "foodie" blog (i'm reaLLy into japanese food)..it goes in to extensive detail about all the fine Japanese cuisine i got to enjoy (meal-by-meal actually..eek).. but you'll also see pictures of our trip to the Tokyo Skytree, Tower Records, The Golden Temple, my love affair with a Geisha (maybe? ...nooo) and so much more....if you're interested, you'll find the blog here:
....i gotta say a big thanx to Thistime for helping put this tour together..and of course, to the fAans..for making the trip soO fuUn!! ..i'd also really like to thank Kiku for helping me to put the blog together and for taking many of the pictures (more pictures of the shows..and some video too soon)..... these are truly memories i'll have forever.....cAn't wait to go bAck!..
Lastly, i'm going to leave you with a video about Love...awe...
i was commissioned to write an anniversary song for a 25th wedding anniversary for Steve and Theresa...i think 25 years of happiness is worth a celebration indeed!..here's the video:
..now get back to watching the 'Lympics ....how 'bout them gymnasts?......naaailed it..
Won't Make It Out Alive... (April 23rd, 2012)
good afternoon to yaz!
..i'm hopin' this email finds you well - and well into your year of fUn...is it me, or is this year already wizzzin' by like a mofo?
i've got some quick bits for ya today --->
..i'll be guest performing this Wednesday here in LA with Helen Austin. sorry for the late notice but she just twiSted my arm about it this past weekend....take a look at her...she's intimidatin'!
..i'm currently producing Helen's record here in LA (think: Katie Herzig meets the lighter side of Bjork, read Helen's blog about recording together here), i'll sit in on a few of her songs at Room 5...
Wednesday April 25th
Room 5, 143 North La Brea Ave
7pm - Helen Austin
8pm - Jess Furman (i know her toO!)
...speaking of Katie Herzig & amazing singer-songwriters, i'm currently featured on a fabulous NoiseTrade mixtape compiled specially for the Nashville Film Festival.
you can download my brand new song (from my upcoming CD release) for FREE along with other greats by Air Traffic Controller, Katie Herzig, Sandra McCracken, Jess Furman, Matthew Perryman Jones and so many more! For FREEee!
"Won't Make It Out Alive"
brand new tune...
mixtape only available until April 26th, so get it now!
Click to Download!
...i'm headed to JAPAN in just a few short weeks to play 6 shows in and around Tokyo. you can get all the tour date info on my website, or the Japanese website that is dedicated to the deluxe release of "Four + Besides" - and in case you've ever wanted to imagine me as George Clooney (i don't mind), here's a photo of me "modeling" a Cogu watch - many thanks to ThisTime Records and Cogu for sending me the watch!
"the new George Clooney"
photo by Ned Brower
some exciting news on my "producer resume" for ya...the long awaited 2nd CD NORDO from Air Traffic Controller is coming out in June! i have a bit of a man-crush on our li'l Dave Munro of ATC - he has a way with words that is very genuine and personal, and i think together we made a record that is very special...(and by "special," i mean, you should buy this mutha as it will melt your ears with buttery indie folk-pop)
..here's a clip of us working with a forty piece concert-band (basically an orchestra without strings)..most of these guys actually participate in the B.U. band that plays at all the gAmes (hooocKey)!
watch the NORDO album trailer on YouTube
you can get a free song from this CD off that NoiseTrade mixtape i mentioned above, and read about the band on the album announcement press release here....
a few last bits...
...i'll have more news on this soon, but i spent some time this year writing & producing with John Fields and a band called Windsor Drive. they are about to release an EP that we all worked on for their tour with He Is We. check out the 1st song off of this EP "Sleepwalking"
watch "Sleepwalking" on YouTube
..and...here's two fun photos from SXSW! 1. a great pic from the house concert at Sarah Sharp's house taken by Matt Wydra, many many thanks to everyone who came to this show after SXSW...packed house..and Sarah knows how to throw a good concert (thank you!), and 2. hangin' with Jeff Holmes from Kansas who snaggy mCsnagged my SXSW panel name plate (no better way to end a panel about fan funding than with one of your fans who helped you fund....)
Austin House Concert, photo by Matt Wydra
that's all the fUn for nOW (mOre soOn!)...
SXSW & Independent Music Awards (March 8th, 2012)
this is the quickie-est of all quickie emails...you're all busy aAnyway, so it's a win win!!!
...just wanted to give you the full details on my SXSW events should you be traveLing to austin next week! i have 2 showcases, 1 panel and 1 house concert...
Wed 3/14 at 3pm
showcase: Quantum Collective presents: Filmmakers Alliance Acoustic BBQ at the Section 101 Launchpad
i think this is *technically* sold out (???) - the eventbrite RSVP seems to be closed now...
1213 Shelley Ave., Austin
(in case it's not sold out!)
Wed 3/14 at 9pm
showcase: Sea Shepherd Conservation Society & popantipop SXSW 2012 party - SEA NOW!
The Brew Exchange
706 West 6th St.
click the link above to RSVP!
Thur 3/15 at 2:45pm
official SXSW PANEL: Age of the Benefactor: The 21st Century Fan Club
Austin Convention Center
you will need a badge for this...
Sun 3/18 from 5-8ishpm
Austin House Concert - at the home of Sarah Sharp and Buffalo Speedway
6503 Auburnhill St
Austin, Tx 78723
Doors 5pm. Concert at 6pm.
Advanced tix here via PayPal for $15
this IS a ticketed event and we've already sold 1/2 of the tickets available, only 50 people max...
last but not least, i have been nominated for an Independent Music Award!
"FOUR" is up for Best Independent Pop Album - woooo!
winners will be announced in April, selected by a panel of industry judges which you can read about here. does this mean "Weird Al" Yankovic is going to listen to myyyy record??? i hOpe so!
there's also a 2nd vote, where FANS choose the "The IMA Vox Pop Jukebox" - fan voted winners! please login & register to vote for meEe!!! here are a few helpful tips & instructions for voting
...that's about it for today...i'll write more after SXSW
hOpe yer all still havin' fun.
Fun in Twenty Twelve (January 24th, 2012)
..how much newz is too much knews if a new mute gnu could newt anew? (the answer lies here.........sigh)
...ferchrisake...i have been waitin' for my "Besides" CD to go live on iTunes before i sent my first email of the year...and as "luck" would have it...there was a snafu getting "Besides" up digitally....is "Besides" cursed? maaaaybe (probably)..oOoo..spooOokyyy... but never-mind-that :: the BESIDES release is imminent ...(and all the better for the wait?):
"Besides" now up on iTunes worldwide - get it here in the US: http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/besides/id497617164
Vinyl is shipping on the 31st! pre-order a copy here: http://www.bleutopia.com/besides/
...sooo..while i was waiting for "Besides" a lot-o-fun small bits of news piled up and i am here to rattle them all off nOW..
.......but, i do want to say this before you read on: as we start the last year of our lives (20-freagin-12 peopleeee!!!) i just wanna say that this is the year of F-U-N (not the year of The Dragon ..it's confusing). i plan on having as much F-U-N this year as possible...i've taken up tennis (F-U-N), i've produced/written with some really F-U-N (fun) people already this month...Kate Pierson of the B-52s (belie' dat), Windsor Drive, Lindsey Ray, MY Radio, Laura Warshauer...i signed a new publishing deal with a super F-U-N <-- company pigFactory USA (thank you Keatly & Brandon)..my next solo album is coming along...F-U-N (nooo, that's not the title of the album...boo) ...and jumping straight into the new-news...i have the most amazingly F-U-N show coming up this Friday:
Jan. 27th - Live at the Bootleg Theater LA
with Mike Viola & Taylor Locke & The Roughs...
with a special mini-set by THE MAJOR LABELS!!!!!
Ducky is in town (for once) & Maclaine (who will never be in the band) is flying in from Seattle!!!!
it's a real-(m.f-n)-ass TML reunion...
it all starts a 8pm, i start 'round 10pm...get tickets here
next up, i'll be attending SXSW in March...
i've been asked to be on a panel & i will announce a few shows soon..but i'll be around most of SXSW checking out bands just like
the rest of ya's so hit me up on Facebook or twitter if you'll be in Austin. if you'll have a badge, here's my panel info:
Age of the Benefactor: The 21st Century Fan Club moderated by Scott Perry
2:00 PM -3:00 PM, Room 17B
Austin Convention Center
...i've got to share one more thing..one of my ol' Berklee professors, Pat Pattison, has released a new songwriting book - and i actually helped contribute to it (seriously - i did ...really).... if you're a budding songwriter, or even an advanced writer, pick it up..it wiLL help you...(..it helped me.....ok..), and you'll get to read some interesting "lyric/poems/exercises" and ramblings from myself and some of the greatest songwriters of our time - like Gillian Welch, Bonnie Hayes, Rob Giles, Greg Becker, Ben Romans (Wonda$how) etc. etc...and of course..Pat is just an amazing teacher and lyric writer himself, he's definitely been an inspiration to me:
"Songwriting Without Boundaries"
FREAKING!!..Meat Loaf "Hell In A Handbasket" is finally coming out in the US on March 12th, again my track on the album is called "Fall From Grace" - you can pre-order a copy on Amazon here
...i have a new international songwriting & producer album cut coming out in March with a Korean girl group called Afterschool..the album is called "PlayGirlz" and the song is called "Rip Off" - i've been told the song is the first on the album, so i will keep my fingers crossed and fill ya in with more news on this!
loOk at these stylish girlz!
in other F-U-N international news...Thistime Records in Japan will be releasing a SUPER-SPECIAL double package of FOUR & Besides (together as one double-disc)...the onLy disc version of "Besides" being made, featuring all 14 b-sides tracks, i can't wait to see it! Plusssss..we're hoping to announce MAY tour dates in Japan fairly shortly..stay tuned Japanese fans...i can't wait to see you again!
..last, but not least...songs i've written with & produced for other peeps have been poppin' up in a few shows as of late:
"My Happy Place" by Jasmine Ash in ABC Family's Jane By Design (Pilot episode)
"Love Will Break Your Heart" by LoudLion in the movie Hello I Must Be Going - showing at Sundance right now starring Melanie Lynskey...
"Turn Me On" by TV/TV used in an episode of The Lying Game titled "Sex, Lies & Hard Knock High" (YES!)
..and "Small Time" by TV/TV in an upcoming episode of Criminal Minds..i'll let ya know via twitter or Facebook when this will air..
but seriously folks...it's all in F - U - N . ..
have you checked out the band Fun.? I was just hipped to their very cool song We Are Young...btw...their name is Fun(period)..duh.
play me on Scramble With Friends if ya want (i'm addicted...hhhhhh...)..hit me up on twitter with your user name...