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:: music reviews with personality ::
© 2005–2006 TSNull
14 JANUARY 2006
CD Review: Jeff Laine's Long Way To Go
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The Table
CD (Release date):
Long Way To Go (February, 2003)
``When people ask what kind of music I play, I
tell them 'good'.'' (J.L.)
Genre (Reviewer):
Bluesy Rock
Yahoo: fuddlefreak
CD Review: Jeff Laine's Long
Way To Go
NWBL March Madness in
Times 4: Concert Review
CD Review: Emmaline
Muchmore's Just a Cherry
Marching towards the madness
AIM: fuddlefreak
Skype: TSNull
Jeff Laine
:: Submissions Procedures ::
``Sounds like'':
``The greatest compliment I ever got was when
someone recently said I sounded like Roy
Orbison. THAT person thinks more of me than I
do of myself because no one sounds like Roy
Orbison. Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, Iggy Pop, Nick
Cave, Leonard Cohen are a lot closer to my vocal
range and style'' (J.L.).
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Berkeley, CA
Great Song: Shelley Miller's
Mini-Review: Eddie Tadross' EP
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``Sounds like''
``Lenny Kravitz channeling Tom Waits.''
Los Angeles, CA
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Playing region:
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``To be someone my son will be proud to call
`Dad' '' (J.L.).
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[email protected]
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My Take
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This is the type of bluesy rock that I've loved since the days I first heard Tom
Waits sing on Dinah Shores daytime talk show back when my hair was still dark
brown. I tend to prefer the melancholy slow numbers, but live crowds probably
get their batteries charged by Laine's steamy up-tempo numbers like ``Jack Me
Up.'' I very much wish I could have seen Laine give a concert before doing this
The bluesy rock type of music that Jeff Laine sings is rather like coffee. Now I
make coffee using Folgers Coffee Singles, and I would think that if you're a
coffee drinker the odds are pretty good you would like Folgers Coffee Singles,
too. On the other hand, if you're exclusively a tea drinker, and you don't care too
much for coffee, you probably won't like Folgers Coffee Singles.
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Likewise, if you also like the kind of bluesy rock that Laine sings, then I think its
a pretty safe beat that you will like Jeff Laine's music. On the other hand, if this
bluesy rock type of music isn't your cup of tea, you better stick with Lipton.
Sisters Morales
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My Bias
I walked into this job the day the old guy walked out.
Right off the boss asked me, ``Kid, what do you know about music?''
``Nothing,'' I answered, ``but I can play a boom box.''
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``A comic, too. That's even better. Boy, go write a review for every CD in those
stacks over there. No hurry, just two reviews every week.''
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The boss never came back, but I've been stuck here in the corner of the office
ever since with only my Folgers, my turquoise boom box, my memo pad, my
number two pencil, and a small mountain of CDs.
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Tim Null
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NPR: All Songs Considered
The Bio
Jeff Laine is from Detroit. Detroit had a huge impact on Laine's life and music.
Detroit is a tough town, and that's just before lunch. Nobody I know will ask a
Detroit cop for help. They say the Los Angeles cops that beat Rodney King took a
cop seminar in Detroit. When people from Michigan say they're going to the city,
they usually mean Chicago.
The Indie Bible
Given Laine's experience, I am surprised that he isn't already (a) rich and
famous, (b) a cult icon, and (c) dead. You can read Laine's full official bio here.
The Interview
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Movie Database (IMDb)
All Music Guide
TBU: As far back as I can remember I have always disliked the ``Frankie &
Johnie'' song, so I am curious why other people seem to enjoy the song. Why did
you include ``Frankie & Johnie'' on your CD?
New CD releases
New DVD releases
JL: You are one of the few people who do not like that song. It has received
more airplay than any other on the CD. It is also a favorite at live shows.
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All that aside, what is great about Frankie and Johnie is that it represents an
unbroken thread in American Folk music. The song predates the Civil War. It
has been recorded since the invention of the phonograph record. The 1st version
I have heard is from Jimmie Rodgers in the 1930's. It has been covered by
virtually all the great songsters in Modern American Music. Also for me
personally I am interested in acknowledging my debt to those songsters.
Hopefully, someone who has never had an opportunity to hear these great
Hopefully, someone who has never had an opportunity to hear these great
talents (as they are no longer popular and played on the radio) will hear Frankie
and Johnie and it will be the beginning of a musical education. Perhaps it will
open a door for some kid somewhere and he/she will realize that there is way
more to music than Britney Spears and American Idol.
Since you got me started...there is this big impulse by many would be artists to be
absolutely ``unique''—a one of a kind. Pop star musical messiahs heralding the
dawn of a new creation. This is such bullshit, and is in many ways supported by
the media. If you really look at the evolution of any Art or Science it is an
ongoing process of learning from our predecessors. Listen to Beethoven,
especially in his earlier work, and you will hear the influence of Haydn (who he
studied with). Supposedly Beethoven hated the old fart—thought him old
fashion etc. None the less, perhaps without Haydn, there would not have been a
Beethoven. Now that is not to say that as artists we should try to copy others,
but rather strive to discover the truth of the work itself, and then internalize it,
and make that truth speak to an audience that would never be responsive unless
it is presented in a form that is consistent with our current existence. So back to
``Frankie & Johnie'' maybe someone will be prompted to listen to my recording
and it will open a wedge where they might be open to listening to those same
Jimmie Rodgers recordings, which we cannot allow to disappear. Maybe that
person is you, Tim,. Have you heard Jimmie Rogers do ``Frankie & Johnie''?
TBU: I don't believe I've heard Jimmie Rodgers' version. I imagine I first heard
the song on a old upright wood radio that was bigger than I was. I was probably
a toddler, and it was probably played on WKZO. It was probably sung in a style
not too much unlike a barber shop quartet or a very bad show tune.
JL: Maybe I'm completely wrong. I think if you hadn't heard the previous
version you would have liked my version. Which in a round about way means
I'm completely right. I think you would hate the Jimmie Rodgers version, so
that’s why it falls on me to do the song.
TBU: Who were your favorite singers, when you were a kid? Who had the
greatest impact on your music?
JL: Favorite singers when I was growing up? That makes a big assumption that
I ever grew up. Favorite singer? Roy Orbison is probably the best of all time.
Paul Butterfield was the first band I ever saw. Mitch Ryder was a great singer.
Growing up in Detroit...Smokey Robinson, Marvin Gaye, You may also be
surprised that Detroit was a big Country Western center...lost Hillbillies who
came to work in the auto factories. I used to watch the Grand Ole Opry on .TV.
But that wasn’t something you could tell anybody about. Greatest impact? I
don’t know. I've always been fickle. When I was a kid taking guitar lessons I
used to steal Bob Dylan and Beatle sheet music from the Joe Fava guitar studio.
Jimi Hendrix forever changed the way I heard music. Iggy and the MC5. I saw
Wayne Kramer a couple months ago...he has a studio just down the block from
me. I told him if it wasn’t for him I would have been an attorney. The jury is still
out on that decision.
TBU: What impact did studying classical music and symphonic composition
have on your contemporary compositions?
JL: Now I know when I am making mistakes. Does knowing that you are
making a mistake prevent you from making it anyway? Often it is the mistake
that propels me forward. So I think I am better at making mistakes
The Songs
``Long Way To Go'': After listening only to this song, I was convinced I needed
to review this CD. ``Long Way To Go'' reminded me of the many Tom Waits'
to review this CD. ``Long Way To Go'' reminded me of the many Tom Waits'
songs that I love. Later, when I listened to ``Frankie & Johnie'' and ``Jack Me
Up,'' I recalled that Waits can sometimes annoy me greatly.
Normally I won't try to analyze lyrics, but I'll make an exception here, because I
want to use this song to illustrate the three points I mentioned about lyrics last
week. Before I launch into my mini-tirade about good lyrics, I'll provide my
interpretation of the lyrics in ``Long Way To Go.''
``Long Way To Go'' begins with references to a crying wolf in the mountain.
Then we have ``echoes,'' ``midnight sky,'' and a ``desert town.'' In a very few
lines, using very few words, Laine creates some beautiful allusions to future
impending dangers.
The song also depends heavily on symbolism. At first blush one would think that
it's a man telling of his love for a woman, but in two verses much of the
symbolism is of childhood-type activities, so I would have to think those are
references to a child—of the singer's love for the child.
The second verse starts with numerous visual images of a person, or persons,
pausing in their travels—be it a long journey, or just daily activities. Reinforcing
the idea that this is a long journey. Then, rather than mentioning childhood
symbols, it ends by referring to a lover.
The third verse again ends with childhood symbolism, but it isn't readily obvious
who's being referred to in the first four lines. It could be the wife and/or lover of
the man singing the song. The person could be the mother of the child. But two
lines confound the story. Those lines state, ``I hear you in the garden, silent as
stone.'' How can you hear someone who is silent as stone?
``Long Way To Go'' feels autobiographical. We don't know much about Laine's
personal life. We know he has a son. We know from his bio that ``his first wife
lost her life to cancer.'' This last statement suggests that Laine remarried, and
the obvious assumption might be that his second wife is the mother of his son.
But if his first wife were the mother of his son, it would provide an explanation
for the confusing lyric, ``I hear you in the garden, silent as stone.'' In the latter
case, there could be the spirit of the child's mother—the spirit of the husband's
wife—silently standing guard, protecting her family.
Between the verses we have a short one-line chorus reminding us that ``we've
come a long way, we got a long way to go.'' And throughout the song the music
helps establish mood, underscores words, and gives emphasis to the phrasing.
Now remember the point here isn't my interpretation of the lyrics. My
interpretation is probably all caca! I provide my interpretation to help illustrate
the three points I tried to make last week about lyrics.
My thesis:``Long Way To Go'' demonstrates a song can have ``heavy-duty''
lyrics and still be audience friendly.
One of my three points last week was keep lyrics simple. In a concert setting,
even attentive audience members will probably only hear a small proportion of
the words. If you wave a tennis ball over a dog's head long enough, he'll
eventually decide you're going to throw it, and he'll wander off and get some
Purina Dog Chow. If your audience can't figure out what a song is about, they'll
start thinking about something more interesting; for example, next year's 1040
With ``Long Way To Go'' even someone on the dance floor, or someone at a
table listening to the latest office gossip, will get the idea the song says that love
is a long hard journey. So those folks will leave for home with a little melody in
their head, and the fragment of a theme; that is, that love is a long hard journey.
their head, and the fragment of a theme; that is, that love is a long hard journey.
So I'm suggesting that you try to have a little melody and a little moral tucked
inside every song like a Cracker Jack surprise, so your audience will head home
after your concert with a handful of delightful toys.
Hopefully one of those ``toys'' will be one or more of your CDs, and when they
get home, if they are so inclined, they can delve into the deeper levels of your
That is my take on this subject, anyway. But what do I know? I can't sing, dance,
or hand jive. I just sit and look pretty.
``Dead Man'': ``There's a beast in the city, he don't give a damn.'' What comes
around, bites you in the butt; or Karma aint no Italian car.
``Frankie & Johnie'': Reviewer Michael Mee states, ``Laine gets really mean
with a cover of the classic `Frankie and Johnie' that blows all the other versions
out of the water.'' (Americana UK, 2004)
``Waiting For You'': If you are lucky, you can be found.
``All The Way Down'': A melancholy bottom of the barrel.
``'59 Les Paul'': This could be a really deep song, a political satire, or merely a
cute song; whatever, it's lots of fun! The supposed thesis of the song is that the
simple existence of the '59 Custom Les Paul guitar, proves the existence of God.
This is a provocative, yet nonoffensive presentation.
``Son'': Might be the perfect song for the next Christening on your calendar
(unless, of course, the guest of honor is a girl).
``Simple Man'': I'm broke, and uneducated; let's jump in bed. Sweet sentiment
and melody.
``Jack Me Up'': Rollicking!!! It will get you hopping and stomping. Don't let this
man down!
And, yes, ``Jack,'' probably does mean every big and little thing that you can
think up.
``Mercy'': Gals, grab your favorite hunk, go out on the dance floor, snuggle up,
and just sway. I guarantee you'll get some tonight. This song is Jeff Laine's top
download on iTunes.
The Clips
You can listen to ``Dead Man'' and ``Long Way To Go'' on Jeff Laine's website.
(See interview.)
The Rating
Jeff Laine's music might be considered akin to drinking
bourbon. Not everyone is going to like bourbon, but if you
do, his music will go down as smoothly as anything you will
find in Kentucky, and that is why I am giving Jeff Laine a 5
for Perfect.
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Posted by TSNull at 08:33 PM in Music, People | Permalink
11 JANUARY 2006
NWBL March Madness in January
Saint Who?: No candy hearts where we're going!
I get the impression sometimes that some women start making their
Valentine’s Day plans right after the New Year’s ruckus settles down.
Thank goodness Mrs. Muddle was never that way!
For the Muddle family, January is the month when we turned our
attention to basketball; of course, occasionally Super Bowl Sunday
does become a temporary distraction.
It wasn’t always that way, I suppose. It probably wouldn't have
happened without the Magic of Earvin Johnson and Anne Donovan. But
from 1979 on, Mrs. Muddle and I have been big college and women's
basketball fans.
That's why we were so sad when the ABL died, and San Jose lost the
It's also why Mrs. Muddle and I were so delighted last year, when
San Jose got a new professional women's basketball team, the San
Jose Spiders of the NWBL.
New Excitement!!
This year local women's basketball will be even more exciting. We can
look forward to an exciting local rivalry.
San Francisco now has its own NWBL team, the San Francisco
Legacy. They've got some players that look pretty good; for
example, Tasheika Allen, Toni Russell, and Alicia Hernandez.
The San Jose Spiders also have so good looking players this year,
too, including Lindsay Yamasaki (Stanford) and Jessica Kellogg
To add to the excitement the first NWBL game this year is between
the S.J. Spiders and the S.F. Legacy on Saturday, February 4, 2006.
The opening game will be played at De Anza College. You can find
ticket information here or here.
Technorati Tags: people, sports
Posted by TSNull at 11:26 PM in NWBL, Sports | Permalink
10 JANUARY 2006
Times 4: Concert Review
Seductive Music and Food
You know more about jazz than I do. I'll give you that much credit right at the
But can you say you saw The Art Ensemble of Chicago perform twice in 1970?
Didn't think so!
I saw The Art Ensemble perform live once in Chicago and once in East Lansing,
Michigan. And, for a short while, Roscoe Mitchell even knew Mrs. Muddle by her
first name; that is, until he saw grumpy me walk up with my shinny white shirt
and narrow black tie.
The blame for all this culture in my life lies with Mrs. Muddle.
The first several decades of our marriage, Mrs. Muddle held out hope I might one
day be fit for public viewing. During this misbegotten period, Mrs. Muddle took
me far and wide, hither and yon, and thoroughly coached me on where I should,
and should not, put my fingers. But, alas, it was to no useful avail. I remain a
graceless klutz to this day.
That's why, when I suggested that we go to a nice restaurant, and listen to a jazz
band, I was surprised Mrs. Muddle didn't object. She didn't agree, but she didn't
object. Then last Wednesday night, totally out of the blue, Mrs. Muddle asked,
``Don't we have somewhere to go tomorrow night?''
I hurried, and made a reservation using OpenTable.
Lincoln Adler, the Times 4 sax player, had suggested that I get reservations, if I
came for dinner (none needed for the bar).
I told Lincoln I'd be willing to do both a music and food review, but I'd expect
twice the fee. He laughed, so I guess he didn't buy the idea.
The layout of the restaurant was like a big ``L'' with the band playing at the top
of the ``L.'' I never ventured to the bottom of the ``L,'' but that appeared to be a
fairly large dining area. In the ``upright'' part of the ``L'' you had two parallel
areas of bar and dining.
Mrs. Muddle and I requested dining seats where we could see the band, but
because there was standing room only at the front of the restaurant, and in the
bar, there weren't any seats where diners could see the band. But that was OK,
we mainly wanted a good time. This was meant to be one of those occasions
where business was pleasure.
The dinning rooms were filled, that was a good reflection on the restaurant. The
bar and stage area of the restaurant were standing room only, that was a good
reflection on the band.
This isn't a ``rated'' review, but if it were, both Times 4 and the restaurant
would receive high ratings. Everything was nearly perfect.
I have only one trifle. The standing room only crowd changed the acoustics of the
room, and, as a result, most of the evening Mrs. Muddle and I had a hard time
hearing the saxophone (and sometimes the bass). When the crowd at the back of
the room cleared a little towards the end, the ``mix'' was perfect. But heck, great
music, good food, who's complaining...just us professional bellyachers.
The Times 4 literature said that they integrate ``groove-based funk/hip-hop
beats, modern harmony and jazz improvisation.'' I don't know about that, I just
know it sounds sweet. If you like jazz, I'd bet real money that you'll like Times 4.
Heck, my Senegal parrot clucks along with their music, and he's a bird with
discerning tastes! In fact, Chewie has a favorite Times 4 tune, ``Uncle Funker.''
I'll tell you my favorite Times 4 song when I do my official review on 21 April
In the meantime you can check out their website, check out their videos, buy
their CD, and enjoy their music.
While you do that, I'll do my homework. Lincoln Adler has given me a long list of
books to read, so I won't be no jazz ignoramus no more. Darn, I'll probably need
a new library card. I think I folded up my old one, and stuffed it under a table leg
somewhere. I may be able to find it, if I can locate a table that doesn't wiggle.
While I'm checking my tables for wiggles, you will have time to check out Times
Oh, I do have one more trifle, curry makes me pee.
Photo Credit: Tim Null
Times 4:
Lincoln Adler - tenor saxophone
Greg Sankovich - keyboards
Kevin Lofton - bass
Maurice Miles - drums
(Click to enlarge.)
Technorati Tags: music, people
Posted by TSNull at 05:41 PM in Events, Music | Permalink
07 JANUARY 2006
CD Review: Emmaline Muchmore's Just a Cherry
Photo credit:
Sean Smuda
Emmaline Muchmore provides something for everyone,
and legs that go from here to there.
The Chart
Emmaline Muchmore
CD (Release Date):
Just A Cherry (November, 2005)
Primary genre:
Pop, electronic
Secondary genre:
``Sounds like''
(Emmaline's list):
Annie Lennox, Fiona Apple, & Nikka Costa
``Sounds like''
(reviewer's list):
Annie Lennox (voice), Shirley Manson from
Garbage (electro-pop styling, see ``Androgyny''),
& Taylor Dayne/Donna Summer (diaphragm)
Minneapolis, MN
Playing region:
Mainly local/regional
``To constantly improve as a singer and
songwriter, and to get my music heard by a lot
more people in a lot more places'' (E.M.).
[email protected]
6: Flockin' Unbelievable!
My Take
When I received an email from Emmaline Muchmore just before Thanksgiving, I
thought, ``Oh no, not another Minneapolis singer.''
You see, at the time I was completing work on my Turn It On with Ali Gray
series, and I had recently done reviews on Patrik Tanner's Soft and Tina
Schlieske's Slow Burn CDs. Frankly, I was beginning to feel a little like a
character out of Fargo, and I wanted to give my Minnewegian dialect a rest.
But then I went to CD Baby, and after I listened to song clips of Just a Cherry, I
realized I was destined to become a huge Emmaline Muchmore fan. In a short
while I had my own personal copy of the Just a Cherry CD.
Then later, while I was listening to Just a Cherry, I became hopelessly addicted
to Emmaline Muchmore's music.
In a nutshell, Emmaline Muchmore performs pop and electronic music. She has
a singing voice that occasionally sounds like Annie Lennox, the electro-pop
styling of Shirley Manson (Garbage; see ``Androgyny''), and powerful pipes that
equal Taylor Dayne or Donna Summer. And to top everything off, she's got legs
that don't quit!
My Bias
It is well-known that I love women with big voices who can slide back and forth
from silky-soft to brassy-bold with the ease of a trombone. Well, as a vocalist,
Emmaline Muchmore was created right to my spec. Additionally, she has taught
me that there's a place in my musical heart for electro-pop and dance. (Maybe I
never quite got over Miss Donna after all.)
Someone once said, ``Music genres never really die, they just hide in plain
sight.” Oh, it was me at dinner last night. (Can your wife, parrot, and adult
sight.” Oh, it was me at dinner last night. (Can your wife, parrot, and adult
children groan in four-part harmony?)
The Bio
Emmaline Muchmore is a Twin Cities native; that is, Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN.
She became involved in the music scene during high school. Prior to going on her
own in the year 2001, Emmaline fronted two bands: (a) an all-girl rock band
called Interstate Judy that played live in the mid to late 90s, and (b) an 80s
cover band called A Fixx of Seagulls that still plays large festivals a few times a
In 2001 Muchmore released her first CD, Inviolate—an alternative pop CD
combining hip-hop grooves, analog synths, vintage guitar sounds and female
In September 2002 Emmaline learned she was pregnant. At the time she was
just beginning her second CD (Just a Cherry). On her website Emmaline states
that this was ``shocking but thrilling news.'' It did delay the production of Just a
Cherry by two years. Also—just to keep life interesting, and disrupt the
production schedule—the Unknown Alloy recording studio has moved three
times in the last three years. (Unknown Alloy is co-owned by Muchmore and
producer Todd Mikkelson.)
Just a Cherry was released in the November of 2005, and is receiving extensive
radio play on Internet radio, while also making headway in about a dozen local
The Interview
TBU: Let's go right to the heart of the matter, and start with your CD inserts.
First, let me say I love the sassy photos of you with the hat, boots, and coat.
They'll probably be worth the price of admission for most guys.
When you pick outfits for photo shoots, do you go for what's personally fun and
funky, or are you going for a particular image? I don't have any fashion sense,
but some of your clothes seem retro.
EM: All fashion these days is completely retro—all the good stuff from the
60s–80s is back. It seems like a complete free for all where you can mix and
match all your favorites.
I'm definitely going for fun and funky when deciding what to wear for photos or
shows. It also has to look gorgeous and flattering.
TBU: In the photo on the back cover, what is that on or in your tongue. Please,
tell me it's not a piercing! Could it be a cherry?
EM: That thing on my tongue is indeed a cherry, tied in a knot.
TBU: I'm puzzled by the CD title, Just a Cherry. What does the title mean?
EM: ``Just a Cherry'' is actually a bit of a boast, tinged with a little sarcasm. It's
part of a longer lyrical line that I came up with for a big rave-up bluesy song I'm
working on. The chorus resolves with the line ``just a cherry on the top of my
super sundae'' and it refers to how no matter what gets thrown my way I'm not
phased by it, and how I handle it actually becomes a badge of honor—something
to be proud of. The title also works with the fact that after I had my ``surprise''
baby I think a lot of people weren't expecting to see another record out of me,
and yet here it is, bigger and better than the last one. Just a cherry on the top of
my super sundae, baby!
TBU: I'm always delighted to see a musician take her voice as a serious
``instrument'' worthy of development and training.
In a 2003 interview you did with Steven Nathan, you mentioned that you are
formally trained on clarinet and piano, but self-taught on guitar and vocals. You
also mentioned that you have been ``strongly influenced by such female vocalists
also mentioned that you have been ``strongly influenced by such female vocalists
such as Anita O’Day, Ella Fitzgerald, June Christy, Lauryn Hill, Eryka Badu,
Gwen Stefani, Dolly Parton and Anita Baker'' (Steven Nathan,,
January 2003).
You may be a self-taught vocalist, but clearly you found yourself a very good
What advice can you give would-be vocalists who are attempting to teach
themselves how to sing?
EM: I'm not sure you can be taught how to sing. But if you've got the basic
ability, which everybody pretty much discovers when they're a kid, then you can
work on improving what you've got. I've learned that you need to know your
strengths and weaknesses. What makes you unique? What type of music that you
sing seems to have the most impact on your listeners? Go with your strengths—
not everyone can be a screamer, or soulful, or whatever, so work on doing
whatever it is that you do that makes you different and special.
As a kid I drove my siblings crazy because I sang to everything on the radio. I
sang all the time! Turns out not only was it fun but it was also good practice. I
would also suggest taking any opportunity you can to sing in front of an
audience. The more you do it the better and more confident you'll become. It also
helps you define your own singing style, and hopefully moves you away from
mimicking your idols.
As far as technique, one thing that has helped me become a technically better
singer has been working as voice talent for educational and commercial clients
for a number of years. I guess this has been my vocal instruction, because that
type of work has allowed me to strengthen my ability to control my breathing
and has improved my phrasing, which has translated into better singing. I would
think that any public speaking, work in radio, etc. would also be helpful in this
TBU: Anita O'Day and Ella Fitzgerald are both well-known for their scat singing.
Is singing along with the recording of a scat singer roughly equivalent to doing
scales in a formal vocal lesson?
EM: This is coming from someone who has never had formal vocal lessons (for
better or worse), but here's my take: learning your scales are the work you do
and the foundation you build on so that you can have the freedom to create and
improvise with your instrument. Singing along with a scat singer is a good way
for a singer to get to know their way around a piece of music, for sure, and it's a
great workout for your vocal chops. But it seems to me singers that scat are
injecting so much of themselves —their own style and personality—into the vocal
that singing along gets you more of a lesson in style and improv than music
Even if you're not crazy about scat singing, the talent that it takes to do it well is
undeniable—it requires incredible creativity and confidence and you have to
know the song inside and out. I love listening to it for the same reason I like to
listen to a lot of jazz —it's very free-form, creative, and out there.
TBU: Earlier you mentioned you siblings. How many brothers and sisters did
you have?
EM: 4 brothers, 1 sister—I'm the 5th.
TBU: That's curious. Ali Gray also came from a large family with lots of
brothers. I'll have to start a survey!
Were you in high school band?
EM: I played the clarinet in high school band through the 9th grade.
TBU: My two sisters played clarinet, and they're only ok singers. My dad played
clarinet, and he couldn't hit middle C with a sledge hammer. I guess playing
clarinet isn't your secret to success.
clarinet isn't your secret to success.
Were your parents musical?
EM: My parents are professional listeners.
TBU: Darn, I thought I had invented that profession.
And speaking of the fact that I'm not a musician, maybe you can explain some of
the things I hear in your music.
In some of your songs (Siren Song, for example), it sounds almost like you have
sampled voices being faded in and out to obtain an organ-like effect. How do you
get that effect?
EM: No sampled voices—it's all me with different types of effects on the vocal
and some finesse from the recording engineer.
TBU: The Just a Cherry CD has just about every imaginable genre. For example,
there's dance, pop, country, rock, Electrolux, and maybe even letgo-Eggo. This
mix of genres is cool by me, but have you ever considered swamp-grass?
EM: Anyone listening to the new CD will notice the variety of songs on there. I
figure people will either dig that or be bugged by it. Maybe it would be smart for
me to focus on a particular genre, and if a producer came along who wanted to
do a record with me that's most likely what I would do because it would be more
commercially viable.
But the thing is I love all types of music and when I sit down to write a song all
different types of music and sounds come to mind. I enjoy exploring different
ways of expressing myself and seeing what I can come up with in the studio—
seeing if I can get down what I'm hearing in my head.
If a particular song of mine somehow got to be a hit I would probably try to focus
more energy in the direction of that type of sound. But in the meantime I'll just
keep writing songs that I feel like writing.
Oh, and I totally love dance remixes! I would love it if someone wanted to do a
huge production dance remix of one of my songs.
TBU: I apologize if I'm demonstrating my ignorance in the way I ask this next
Your songs are filled with tons of little- and medium-sized noises that seem to
provide the same function of guitar hooks and riffs, in that they keep things fun
and lively. I assume many, if not most, of these ``noises'' are created with
sampled sounds. When you decide on what samples to use, do you use a trail and
error approach, or do you start with a preconception of the type of sound you're
EM: No sampled sounds—what you're hearing is either a synthesizer, a guitar, a
drum machine, or a vocal.
But the answer to your question is: both approaches. Sometimes I know exactly
what type of sound I want to hear in a particular spot and try to get that. A lot
of times I rely on Todd's expertise in the studio—he'll experiment with sounds
for a while, then run them past me and we'll start tweaking from there.
The Songs
Emmaline Muchmore has put together ten songs that are multilayered both
lyrically and musically.
I won't attempt to interpret her songs. The magic and the mystery is in ``the
stew.'' I suggest you go to CD Baby and stream the Just a Cherry song clips for
awhile. I recommend CD Baby, because they have two-minute song clips—not
the usual 30 second clips, which are totally useless (but don't get me started on
that subject!).
In dance songs, it's not easy to develop a story or idea through the use of the
traditional verse/chorus format, so Muchmore ``lays down'' the lyrics as one
might lay down tracks. She starts with a simple concept or metaphor to establish
a mood, then she adds additional layers. For example, in ``Distorted''
Muchmore begins with a mythical past, then moves to the present, and finally
speculates on the future. While this is all going on, she takes the opportunity
lyrically to make a few comments and observations about the state of life in the
world today. Personally I haven't delved too deeply into her lyrics, I'm way too
busy getting my ``groove on''!
That segues to my three major tenets about lyrics.
Lyrics should stay out of the way.
Lyrics must add to the mood.
Keep lyrics simple. (Even if an audience is listening carefully,
they may only be hearing a small number of words.)
Going through the songs I listed five or six as dance tunes, and three or four as
pop and one as being ``a little country and a little rock n roll.'' (Obviously I'm
not quite sure whether one song is pop or dance. Or, it could just be Emmaline's
take on where Western music went.)
Mr personal favorites are ``Siren Song,'' ``Magpie,'' and ``For You.''
``For You'' is a song Emmaline wrote as a mother to her own child. My plan is to
feature ``For You'' in my Great Song series in the very near future.
Mosquito Media in the UK has chosen the song ``Let 'Em In'' from Just a
Cherry to be on The Greatest Music You've Never Heard, Vol. 2, (see a
review of it at
The Clips
Go to CD Baby, as soon as you finish my review!
Got none. I'm a happy camper this week.
The Rating
It has taken so long, people were starting to say that I would never give out a 6
(5=Perfect). After all, how can a CD be better than perfect? Well, it is easy, when
the CD is flockin' unbelievable from beginning to end.
Technorati Tags: music, people
Donate today: American Red Cross
Posted by TSNull at 03:06 PM in Great Music!, Music, People | Permalink
04 JANUARY 2006
Marching towards the madness
An article in the paper last week said the crime rate was down, so I've been
feeling pretty safe around the old domicile lately.
I should know better. Hubris gets you every time.
Last night I was cool as a cucumber while I was strolling out to my car. (If I
recall correctly I may have been rehearsing my three-part production of
recall correctly I may have been rehearsing my three-part production of
``Comfortably Numb"; whistle, hum, and cluck.) But no sooner did I get middriveway, then my head was jerked to the side violently like I had just been
grabbed from behind by a froth-mouthed chiropractor.
It took me a second to gather my wits. My head was throbbing, so I couldn't
think. And my glasses had gone MIA, so I couldn't see.
I turned around slowly doing my best impression of The Karate Kid, Part I and
II. (Who would have guessed that the next kid was the real winner?)
Anyway, just as I was getting myself into that bird position from the first karate
movie, I heard a loud cackle.
``Hey, Mr. Muddle, great defense. You could play for Tom Izzo!"
It was my neighbor's daughter, Ruthie. For some reason she likes to shoot hoops
in my driveway.
``What the heck are you doing up, Ruthie? Aren't respectable girls supposed to
be in bed by 9pm?"
``Right, and what is this, nineteen fifty-aught-eight?"
``Oh, no, of course not," I muttered. ``Just pick up your toys, and head on back
to your house before your folks worry."
``Mr. M, you forget I'm twenty-two? I'm not twelve anymore. I've just been out
here shooting some hoops, while I wait for my ride."
``Right, right, well, don't stay out too late tonight, Ruthie. Your Dad needs some
After that I went on to the convenience store to get my Wheat Thins.
When I got back, Ruthie was gone. She and her friends probably went out to get
B-Ball tickets. Earlier in the day I had mentioned the NWBL was about to start
up their 2006 season. Naturally Ruthie was excited.
This year the National Women's Basketball League has four teams:
San Francisco Legacy,
San Jose Spiders,
San Diego Siege;
Colorado Chill.
Last year the Spiders loved to give Colorado the stinger, and with now with three
California teams in the league you know there are going to be some hot rivalries.
I wonder if that new S.F. Legacy team is going to be any good? I better check
some of them out.
I wonder if I'll be seeing Ruthie at any of the NWBL games this year?
I wonder if I will see you at any of the games?
Posted by TSNull at 05:04 PM in NWBL, Sports | Permalink
Blame Sally to perform in Berkeley, CA
John Mellencamp said, ``That's when a sport was a sport. And groovin' was
groovin'' (1987, ``Cherry Bomb" ).
Well, ladies and gentlemen, it was also when a babe was a babe, and those are
four seriously cute babes pictured above.
Collectively these four babes are called Blame Sally. (They're currently on my
FaV5 list.)
They're going to perform this Sunday in Berkeley, CA at the Caffe Trieste.
Listening to Blame Sally music is a bit like eating at a Greek Festival. The food at
every booth is similar, yet somehow unique, and always incredibly delicious!
If you're in the vicinity of Berkeley, CA this Sunday, you should make every effort
to see Blame Sally.
Now, who's giving me a ride?!?
Technorati Tags: music, people
Posted by TSNull at 02:14 PM in Events, Music, People | Permalink
31 DECEMBER 2005
Great Song: Shelley Miller's ``Hurricane"
“I can smell tornado.”
That’s what I said to myself, as I went out to get the newspaper New Year’s
morning. There had been a hard, cold rain all night. But by morning it was warm
and blustery. The smell of tornado was in the air. The fact that tornadoes almost
never touch down in Northern California is a small blessing, given our floods,
mudslides, earthquakes, and firestorms.
Some people can smell rain coming. Some can smell snow. I smell tornado.
I had thought that all Midwesterners grew up with the knack for smelling
tornado, but eventually I learned I was wrong. I guess it’s either a matter of
noting details. It’s perhaps why some folks will walk through the woods and see
the deer grazing in the meadow, and others won’t.
I guess I developed my nose for tornadoes when I was a toddler (about 1950).
Whenever there was a Tornado Watch, Mom would give me a stern admonition
telling me to stay in the yard. (Did I mention my Mom was from Kansas?) Mom
would also play the radio loud all day, so — no matter where she was — she could
hear the Tornado Advisory Announcements.
(Of course, my Mom didn’t need to worry. If you give a tornado a choice between
a bunch of brick houses up a hill, or some nice trailer parks down in the valley,
the tornado will take the trailer parks every time.)
Like Pavlov’s Dog, it wasn’t long before I could associate the smell of sweet,
pungent air that is frequently present before tornadoes with the Tornado
Advisories on the radio. So maybe I just developed this knack, because I’m more
susceptible to classical conditioning than most.
(One could say that when warm and cold air systems crash into each other,
updrafts are created, which draw huge amounts of pollen into the air,... but
what’s the fun in that?)
At this point, you might be asking, is this long prologue going somewhere? Or is
this just another bridge to nowhere?
In my own stumble-bumble way, I’ve been leading up to how Shelley Miller helps
us use all of our senses to set the scene in her stories. In her song ``Hurricane,”
Shelley Miller skillfully combines the emotional impact of music with the
imagery of lyrics to create a mood that paints an indelible picture in our minds.
The song begins with a short, moody, mellow, melody. It follows with the line
``pale blue of the pilot light.” Almost at once, we’re in a dark, melancholy place.
The song continues with Miller’s `` lonesome cowgirl’’ voice being carried along
by a slow, sad melody provided by Greg Shultz’s pedal steel guitar and the steady
rhythms of the drum beat.
Above all this Kara Kulpa’s short fiddle melodies pass by from time to time like
ominous clouds passing before the moon just before sunrise.
We soon learn that Miller is singing about a character who has arrived at the
``last stop for a hurricane.” Someone who will wear ``out [their] welcome to
prove [they] couldn’t get in the door.’’
Miller is singing about a readily identifiable character. (Most likely a little bit of
you and me.) I think most folks will see part of themselves in this song's central
character. I know I’ve been a pathetic fool more often than I'd like to admit —
acting too foolish to ``have the sense to pick up [my] sticks and go home’’;
foolishly keeping ``secrets on the back of the shelf’’; feeling like the big idiot who
was ``the last heart standing at the edge of the bay.’’
But isn't recognizing a problem the first step to recovery? Didn't someone once
say that half the battle was just recognizing that you were a pathetic creature
unworthy of redemption?
Well, as I progress on my twelve step program as a recovering fool, I will
frequently stop by Shelley Miller’s site to listen to ``Hurricane.''
Unfortunately at this time I can't get a personal copy, because ``Hurricane’’
hasn’t been released, yet. However, ``Hurricane'' will be on Miller’s next CD,
which will be released this spring. (Look for a review here about mid-April.)
Until Shelley Miller’s next CD is released, (a) you can listen to a clip of
``Hurricane’’ by clicking on the player below; (b) you can listen to a full stream
of the song on Shelley Miller’s website; and (c) you also can
download a live acoustic ``living room’’ version of the song here at Shelley
Miller’s website.
I’m not sure where I will be while I wait for Shelley Miller’s next CD, because I
smelled tornado again this afternoon. I guess I will head for high ground, and
“find a little spot to hide [my] dreams.”
If you don't see a Flash MP3 player directly above, click here to hear
Technorati Tags: music, people
*** *** ***
While I was writing this story, I sent Shelley Miller an email. I asked her
permission to link to her two listings of ``Hurricane.'' And, because I was having
trouble getting started, I asked her to conjure up a muse for me. You can read
Shelley Miller's reply by clicking on the image below.
Posted by TSNull at 05:48 PM in Great Music!, Music, People | Permalink
27 DECEMBER 2005
Mini-Review: Eddie Tadross' EP ``Demo"
Eddie Tadross is a Long Island native who has worked in New Orleans, San
Diego, and the U.K. He has returned to New York.
In December of 2003 Tadross released his first solo work, an electronic-pop EP,
under the pseudonym “governortea.” He worked the coffee shop circuit and then
fronted an alternative rock band. Based on his website calendar, Tadross now
seems to be chiefly working cafes, bars, and music halls in New York City.
Eddie Tadross' Demo EP is exactly that, a small collection of unreleased songs
designed to demonstrate Eddie Tadross’ skills as a singer, composer, keyboardist
(piano, Hammond B3, Wurlitzer), and recording artist. Full streams and
downloads of the songs are available here at Tadross' site. Lyrics
for the songs can be viewed here at Tadross' personal website.
Tadross has been said to have ``a voice that sounds like Bono with a Michael
Hutchence attitude" (Jennifer Layton, I would say this is a
fair characterization. I would only add that compared to both Bono and Michael
Hutchence, Tadross' recorded work thus far is decidedly more reserved and
The four songs on Tadross' Demo EP succeed in demonstrating his extensive
skill as singer, composer, keyboardist, and recording artist. My personal favorites
were ``Somewhere New” and ``Oil Change.” Hopefully these four songs will
help open opportunities for Tadross.
Paraphrasing Greg Brown (
The music should be in the front seat.
(With Greg Brown everything boils down to a car metaphor.)
I have three principal complaints with Tadross' Demo EP:
There aren't any up-tempo songs.
The included songs don't have any vibrant up-tempo or climatic moments.
For the most part, the contribution of the sidemen is overshadowed by the
vocals and keyboards.
The first two points are self-explanatory, so I will only comment on the third. I
listened to this EP for several weeks before I realized there were any instruments
besides vocals, keyboards, and occasional drums. Bringing string rhythms or
percussion noises to the fore from time to time would have added some welcome
In Demo, Tadross shows us his skills. Ok, I'm convinced, Eddie. You're a very
talented guy. Now can you give me some excitement!?!
talented guy. Now can you give me some excitement!?!
My guess is that Tadross was seriously bummed out, when he put Demo
together. I'm hoping he's over that period of his life (that woman in his life?).
I'm hoping he's ready to go ``Somewhere New." Somewhere exciting!
Rating is 4 out of 5, where 5 is perfect.
Technorati Tags: music, people
Posted by TSNull at 03:55 PM in Music, People | Permalink
26 DECEMBER 2005
Going to the Next Level: Step 4, Ratings
[Updated 3 January 2006]
New Rating System:
Because most music websites now use a 5 star rating system, I decided I needed
to switch to a 5 point rating system too. There's only one problem. I can't do
anything without mucking it up some. So my 1 through 5 rating system will have
scores of 1 through 7. (What? They didn't have ``New Math" where you went to
Let me explain.
First, I am going to use birds, rather than stars.
Oh, he's so cute!
Then each rating will have the following meaning (more or less):
The music is DOA,
and there is a DNR order in effect.
Substandard musical technique.
Emotional impact nil.
Musical technique ok to pretty good.
Emotional impact lacking.
Musical technique good to excellent.
Emotional impact varies.
Musical technique excellent.
Emotional impact high through-out.
From beginning to end the music is simply Flockin' Unbelievable!
And then:
[Updated 3 January 2006]
Posted by TSNull at 06:28 PM in Site Business, Submissions | Permalink
Befuddled Music Announcement: 26 Dec 2005
chris vickery _____________________debut solo cd
Written by Greg Quill TORSTAR Entertainment
A veteran of North America’s concert circuit and a seasoned session musician with
scores of hit recordings to his credit, Chris Vickery, in the noblest years of a long
lifetime in music, has put the sum of his vast experience on the line, and his big heart into
song, with the creation of his debut solo CD, Temporary Measures
One of Canada’s most respected bass players, whose warm, strong grooves and melodic,
jazz-funk lines have graced the recorded and live work of 1960s and 70s Canadian and
international soul, jazz, blues and rhythm ‘n’ blues legends David Clayton Thomas,
Lennie Breau, Bob Seger, The Majestics, John Lee Hooker, Jackie Wilson, Malcolm
Tomlinson, Rick James, Peter Allen, Charity Brown, James Cotton, and Salomé Bey,
among others, Vickery brings wisdom, passion and commitment to this collection of
original songs, produced in Toronto by Vickery and veteran studio engineers Rusty
McCarthy and Terry Brown (Rush).
A small army of Canada’s finest session musicians — all Vickery’s friends and
musical colleagues — contributed to Temporary Measures. Among them are drummer
Mike Sloski, guitarists McCarthy, Dominic Troiano, and Colin Linden, Michael Pickett
on harmonica, keyboards wizards Robert Guseves and Doug Riley (who also wrote most
of the compelling horn and vocal arrangements), saxophonists Robert Brough and John
Johnson, trumpet player Chase Sanborn, and singers Mary Margaret O’Hara, Sharon Lee
and Vivienne Williams, Maddi Willis and Neil Donnell and Eric Mercury.
rec'd 25 DEC 2005
The above press releases were written by their respective contributors.—TSNull.
Technorati Tags: music
Posted by TSNull at 04:41 PM in Announcements, Music | Permalink
21 DECEMBER 2005
Christmas Carols: My two current favorites
The following two songs are my favorite Christmas carols this year:
Sarah Silverman, ``Give This Jew Girl Toys" [explicit]
Steve Goodman, ``Winter Wonderland" (live)
Happy, Happy! Joy, Joy! Everyone.
Posted by TSNull at 07:27 PM in Music | Permalink
20 DECEMBER 2005
Patrik Tanner concert photos
Recently Patrik Tanner opened for Martin Zellar at the Pioneer Place on Fifth in
St. Cloud, MN. The photos below were taken at that concert by Michelle Robb
Posted by TSNull at 10:32 AM in Music, People, befuddled Photo | Permalink
19 DECEMBER 2005
Befuddled Music Announcements: Mon., 19 DEC 2005
markus koller___________songwriter, composer, producer...
... but unfortunately no singer! So Markus Koller has specialized in writing,
composing and arranging songs and instrumental music of various styles for
professional vocalists and bands, as well as for commercials, film & television.
In order to create expressive productions out of his mad musical brainwaves, the
winner of the Austrian Starlight Award cooperates with different fabulous guestmusicians and several talented creative singers, who complete his instrumental
basic ideas by the vocal interpretation of his words. In this way MK´s recording
studio is a birthplace of unique music of different styles and sounds. More
information about MK and his team, as well as latest lyrics and pre-productions
of unsigned songs are available at So don´t hesitate
to contact MK, if you´re interested in his songs or lyrics, or simply to let him
know what you are looking for!
MK is a member of AKM-Austria.
rec'd 6 DEC 2006
alexandre de guise _______________________cd released
My name is Alexandre de Guise. I am a Recording/Performing Artist, virtuoso
guitarist and singer/songwriter/composer originally from Moscow Russia, with
international experience.
I am running my New Solo Project and having my New Solo CD Album, entitled
"Can't Be in Vain" (Digipack Gold Limited Edition), along with Live Concert
(open air) DVD entitled "Live in Red Square" recently successfully released in
Moscow Russia. It's already in record stores Russia wide. (The Album is a
collection of songs which, stylistically, can be described as a well-balanced blend
of Mainstream melodic Rock, gentle Pop, with an influence from Progressive
Rock, air of New Age and a vibe of Celtic Folk.)
Having already received quite a few favorable reviews and positive responses
from international Industry and Media contacts, I am searching best possible
opportunities to market this Project in the U.S. (probably Western Europe and
the U.K., too) and, therefore, am interested in getting proper representation,
promotion, touring and distribution in these markets, including the more
promotion, touring and distribution in these markets, including the more
possible Press, Radio and TV exposure.
As my music works have been quite oftenly related to as "cinematography
matching", guess I'd most surely appreciate getting a few decent Film and TV
A worthy publishing/record deal with a SOUND and FEASIBLE label would be
an option, too (since I do hold all the copyrights to my material).
My official website address is:
(bio, photo gallery, releases, reviews, news, booking info and MP3 samples)
rec'd 10 DEC 2006
liz nash __________________________________cd released
August 24, 2005 (Studio City, CA) -- Liz Nash, a singer/ songwriter originally
from New York, will release her long-awaited debut album "Peter's Diner" on
August 22. The CD contains 5 new tracks of soulful pop and unique brand of jazz
finger-style techniques with influences from Rickie Lee Jones and Billy Holiday
to Chet Atkins and Les Paul. The CD features special guests Oskar Cartaya
(Jennifer Lopez, Spyrogyra, Sheila E, Robbie Robertson) and John Bertsche
(Sonny Tiles, Randy Scruggs, Atlantic Records, Warner Bros. Records).
As a child, Liz thought the folk guitar player at the local library was the coolest.
She would become mesmerized by the stories she sang. There was truth in it, she
thought. Soon after, Liz started attending USDAN center of performing arts in
New York, and studied music. She would go home and play songs for her older
brother Jorge and they'd study the back of Beatles and Simon and Garfunkel
albums. After extensive jazz study, Liz started playing duets in clubs on Long
Island and Manhattan, which eventually lead her to her first recognition. Since
then, she has played in many venues in California, South America, and Europe.
Michael Mostert, owner of California Professional Audio says, "she's the
complete package," she writes her own songs, alluring vocal style, accomplished
guitarist, sexy and fun. We are proud to endorse her and she was featured as
"Artist of the Month" on our web site Due to the
overwhelming demand, she was featured for two consecutive months.
"I would like to inspire others and collaborate with artists that I admire. I would
like to continue contributing and working with the T.V. and film community.
Perhaps tour soon," she explains.
Liz Nash, with her alluring voice and unique brand of jazz finger-style techniques
has mesmerized audiences all over the world. This unconventional musical
nomad has attracted, performed and recorded with top musicians. With her
extensive travel and guitar in hand, she has profoundly committed herself to
share her gift of song.
contributed by Liz Nash Productions (press release)
11054 Ventura Blvd.
Suite 465
Studio City, CA 91604
contact: telephone (310) 858 -5568
rec'd 18 DEC 2006
Technorati Tags: music
The above press releases were written by their respective contributors.—TSNull.
Posted by TSNull at 08:00 AM in Announcements, Music | Permalink
18 DECEMBER 2005
Exclusive Befuddled Photo: Tina Schlieske and Patrik Tanner
Two exceptional musicians and wonderful people are pictured below:
Tina Schlieske and Patrik Tanner.
The photo was taken on 23 November 2005 by Michelle Robb Tanner. Patrik
Tanner backed Tina Schlieske up on guitar for her solo show at 318 Cafe in
Excelsior, Minnesota.
Posted by TSNull at 11:26 AM in People, befuddled Photo | Permalink
13 DECEMBER 2005
Going to the Next Level: Submission Procedures
TBU Submission Procedures:
this befuddled universe (TBU) is a website focused on promoting quality
independent music. TBU publishes submitted announcements in addition to
articles and reviews relating to submitted music. This is a statement regarding
the relationship between music submitters and TBU. Please see the information
below for details.
Announcements relating to independent music, or the independent music
business, will be considered for publication in this befuddled universe (TBU).
Announcements must be 300 words or less.
Announcements should be emailed to [email protected]
The subject line of the email message should begin with: "TBU
Announcements should be in HTML or text format.
TBU reserves the right not to publish submitted announcements.
TBU reserves the right to edit submitted announcements.
Concert Photos
Candid concert photos can be published on TBU's sister site these befuddled
Email 4 to 6 non-professional photos to [email protected]
It's best that the photos be 480x640 or 640x480 72dpi.
It's also good to include the date, venue, and band member names with
the photos.
Review Requests
Type of music sought
The target audience is between 30 and 50 years old, and is comprised of people
who are dissatisfied with the music available from the major labels and FM
radio. Many of our readers are just beginning to explore the indie music scene,
and they are seeking informed guidance from fellow travelers.
We are looking for material that is mainstream, but distinctive. We demand
quality musicianship. Lyrics are important, but they cannot be sappy or
awkward. Acts with a regional flavor are encouraged to submit. We are open to
most musical genres and styles. Hip-Hop is OK, but no rap or ``satanic" heavy
metal. We only review secular music. Profanity won't disqualify a CD, but we find
too much of anything damn right tiresome!
People who feel they must first query us by email to ask if a musician's CD is
suitable for review, should attach one representative MP3 file to their email
How to submit
There are three ways to submit a music review or music story request.
I. Use the TBU Sonicbids' Drop Box
The TBU Sonicbids' Drop Box is checked on a daily basis, so Sonicbids usually
gives you the fastest turnaround on your submission. (Note: There is a modest
fee for the convenience of using an online submission system.)
The Sonicbids' website can be found at:
The listing for this befuddled universe on Sonicbids can be found at:
Notification is promised within 14 days, but is usually
made within a week.
II. Mail your CD to this befuddled universe
TBU's mailing address is:
this befuddled universe
1425 Glacier Drive
San Jose CA 95118-1734 USA
Notification will be made after (i) a CD has been
received, (ii) a reviewer has listened to the music, and
(iii) a decision has been made. Every attempt will be
made to send notification via email within 14 days of the
date the CD was received.
Please email BTU first, if your shipper requires a telephone number.
III. Email MP3 files to this befuddled universe
Email MP3's to [email protected]
Email notification to [email protected]
Notification will be made after a reviewer has listened to
the MP3 files, and a decision has been made. Every
attempt will be made to send notification via email
within 14 days of the date the MP3 files were received.
Personal Information
When making a music submission, please include the following information:
Musician's name
Musician's email address
Contact person's name & email address (if different)
If CD/EP provide the title and release date
If individual songs, give title to each song
List the genre, or combination of genres, that best describe the music
Submitters of announcements will not be notified whether an announcement has
been accepted, declined, or when it is to be published.
Music submitters will be informed of the publication decision via the email
address provided at the time of the submission. The publication decision can
include the following possible results:
1 . Accepted: A story or review relating to the submitted music will be
scheduled for publication on the BTU website, and, if possible, the story
or review will be published within three months of the acceptance date
(two months will be the goal). Upon acceptance, the submitter will be
given a date when he or she will be able to learn more about the
scheduling and the nature of the story or review.
2 . Declined: BTU will not publish a story or review about the submitter's
music at the current time.
3 . Standby: (a) If one of the Accepted submitters is unable to fulfill any story
related agreement, a standby submitter will be asked to fulfill those story
related obligations (or a new story or review will be designed). (b)
Standby submitters will be reconsidered three months after they were
given standby status. At that time they will either be Accepted or
4 . Pending: BTU cannot make a publication decision until additional
information is received from the submitter. If information is requested
and not received in a timely manner, the submitter will be Declined.
Technorati Tags: music
Posted by TSNull at 01:00 PM in Site Business, Submissions | Permalink

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