This series truly has it all - incredible scripts, Emmy-worthy acting performances, killer directing, oh yeah, awesome music too :) Tonight's episode is mesmerizing, you can find it on the app DirecTV NOW, or on your DirecTV cable Ch. 239, more details here: http://start.att.net/exclusive/audience/mr-mercedes/
Am feeling like luckiest girl in world! Thrilled to be on "Mr. Mercedes", a TV adaptation of a Stephen King detective trilogy, with Jack Bender and David Kelley. "People will come to Mr. Mercedes for the thrills that Stephen King so readily offers and they will stay for the richness and characters,” says Kelley (Big Little Lies), the show’s executive producer.” Full rundown on the show here: https://www.usatoday.com/story/life/tv/2017/06/02/exclusive-sneak-peek-stephen-king-mr-mercedes-series/102393064/
and trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u8SM18XrqjQ
Available August 9 to DirecTV subscribers on the AT&T Audience network!
Casual Season 3 is under way! We've been working on it since February so am excited that it is finally out in the world (on Hulu). I think you'll find some surprising music choices this season! I love working with Helen Estabrook, Zander Lehman and Jason Reitman on this series because as well as being funny and nice, they always make smart decisions, like hiring my idol Carrie Brownstein (Portlandia, Sleater-Kinney) as one of many stellar directors this season. Oh and what else is Helen up to? Just this: http://variety.com/2017/film/news/portlandia-carrie-brownstein-directing-fairy-godmother-movie-mgm-1202434898/
Jason Reitman + Diablo Cody + Charlize Theron working together again! Not Young Adult 2 but a new story about life told from this trio’s unique, compelling and charming point of view. And lots of killer music because, Jason. Working on this film was a highwire balancing act of creative desire, budget and schedule but I’m happy to say we pulled it off. Can’t wait for you to see it, but I will have to be patient until the Focus Films release date of April 20, 2018!
No word on distribution yet, but summer 2016 was enjoyably spent working with William H. Macy on a film titled “Krystal” that he directed and co-stars in. This is a gem of a film with quirky characters in a small southern town. I adore it and it was fun to work on something primarily score-driven — the score is its own character in a way, representing the south with a special palette of sounds and instruments created by Dan Romer. The film is a bit of a wild ride and the score anchors it in a way that allows the audience to enjoy it but still feel grounded. Yay Dan! More on the film at this link from the Bentonville Film Festival, co-founded by Geena Davis. (testing push to facebook) http://bentonvillefilmfestival.com/artists/krystal-2/
At the same time that I was finishing the X-Files, I began work on another science fiction series for Fox titled Second Chance. Well, at first it was called The Frankenstein Code, because it is a modern re-telling of that mythology, but as it developed it seemed a more modern title was needed. Similarly to The X-Files, it features a brilliant but socially awkward male character (Otto) and an extremely smart and very competent female character (Mary). Unlike The X-Files, these two are partners because they are twins, partners for life in a genetic sense, and they have been so successful as a team that they now run (and own) a billion-dollar tech company similar to Apple or Google. However, for some very good reasons that I won't go into here, Otto has invented a way to bring people (well, certain people, not everyone) back from the dead and give them a second chance at life, with a few strings attached.
In the hands of a lesser writer this might not have much potential but in the hands of Rand Ravich (who created "Life" for NBC a few years back) this became a really interesting (and funny) drama about what someone might do with a second chance at life, what he can change, how he won't change, and how it affects others around him who might start seeing their own life in a completely different way. Plus throw in some super high-tech inventions, the general sci-fi-ness of it all, and some excellent crime-solving stories (because the gentleman they brought back happens to be a Sheriff whose son is an FBI agent ...) and I'm hooked! Plus, Rand has really good taste in music and we got to use some fun things like Band Of Skulls, Serena Ryder, Gram Rabbit and more! Full list of songs can be found at my favorite new site, TuneFind. The show airs on Fox Fridays at 9pm. If you missed the first few episodes, I'm sure you can find it On Demand or on the Fox website. Worth it!
The only thing more fun than working on The X-Files? Being interviewed about it by Mashable! Get a little behind-the-scenes on music supervision, including how Chris Carter and Glen Morgan picked music for The X-Files, here.
It's slightly embarrassing that I have not written a post in one year plus two weeks. I have three very good excuses though: X-Files, Casual, Second Chance. These three excellent TV shows took up the bulk of my year, even though two of them are only airing as of January 2016. I won't deny I was thrilled like a giddy schoolgirl when I got the call to work on The X-Files, since I was a fan long before I ever worked in TV. To have been able to work on this series reboot was literally a dream come true, and an honor. I love all the new episodes (although my favorites are definitely "Founder's Mutation" and "Babylon"), I think the writing/directing/acting was all phenomenal and nobody has lost a step in the missing years. Here is hoping for Season Eleven!
Starting this year, I will be sharing all my show playlists at Tunefind.com, I love their interface and being able to interact and answer audience questions. We did not use a lot of music on The X-Files (except in "Babylon", when we went crazy!) but I hope you will go here if you have any questions: X-Files Tunefind page.
(PS in case you've been living under a rock, The X-Files airs Mondays at 8p on Fox until Feb 22.)
It was, after all, a wonderful year for music. Which you wouldn't know from the hundreds of discarded CDs littering my office right now. But when they were good, they were very, very good. I was in a radio kind of mood this year so I did a top songs list instead of top albums, but rest assured there is an outstanding album behind each and every one of these songs. I'm even pretty confident in the forthcoming Sleater-Kinney album, and so pleased that picking songs instead of albums allowed me to include their single and say how excited I am about their reunion, album, and upcoming tour. Which brings me to the point that it was a very good year for the ladies. Last year I struggled to include five female singers in my Top 35, but this year no less than eleven gals made my list, easily. Go, girls! Anyway, enough talk, start clicking, and listening, the best way is on Spotify, in order just like a radio show, right here:
2014 Brave Songs: Tricia's Top 35 on Spotify. Or you can look them up on your music player of choice, here they are in alphabetical order by artist
[table colwidth="200|200|200"]Artist,Track,Album, Beautiful Small Machines,Paper Planes,The DJ Stayed Home Aloe Blacc,Chasing,Lift Your Spirit Bishop Allen,Start Again,Lights Out Black English,Leave The Door Wide Open,El Prado BØRNS,10000 Emerald Pools,Candy Rosanne Cash,A Feather's Not A Bird,The River & The Thread Deerhoof,Last Fad,La Isla Bonita Embrace,Follow You Home,Embrace Ex Hex,Waterfall,Rips Fink,Green and the Blue,Hard Believer Flip Grater,Diggin for the Devil,Pigalle Glass Animals,Gooey,Gooey Greyhounds,Whats On Your Mind,Accumulator Jolie Holland,The Love You Save,Wine Dark Sea In-Flight Safety,Blue Flares,Conversation La Sera,Kiss This Town Away,Hour Of The Dawn Hamilton Leithauser,Alexandra,Black Hours Luluc,Small Window,Passerby Stephen Malkmus,Lariat,Wig Out At Jagbags Steve Mason,A Lot of Love,Monkey Minds in the Devils Time The New Pornographers,Brill Bruisers,Brill Bruisers Patrick Park,My Holding Hand Is Empty,Love Like Swords Protomartyr,Ain't So Simple,Under Color of Official Right Sea Wolf,The Waters Wide,Song Spells No.1:C Sleater-Kinney,Bury Our Friends,Bury Our Friends single Spoon,New York Kiss,They Want My Soul Chris Staples,Hold Onto Something,American Soft Strand of Oaks,Goshen '97,HEAL The Sugar Stems,Baby Teeth,Only Come out at Night Tacocat,Alien Girl,NVM Tobacco,Eruption,Ultima II Massage tUnE-yArDs,Wait for a Minute,niki nack TV On The Radio,Right Now,Seeds Tweedy,High As Hello,Sukierae The War On Drugs,Lost In The Dream,Lost In The Dream [/table]
From NY Times / Dan Brooks: "It's hard to imagine now, but there once was a time when you could not play any song ever recorded, instantly, from your phone. I call this period adolescence. It lasted approximately 30 years, and it was galvanized by conflict. At that time, music had to be melted onto plastic discs and shipped across the country in trucks ... " Full NY Times piece here, "Streaming Music Has Left Me Adrift". And this is why I peruse the NY Times music section from time to time folks - a lovely piece of prose that puts into words what we indie kids of the nineties have lost with the digital music revolution. A must read. Thank you Dan Brooks. And perfectly illustrated by the genius cartoonist Tom Gauld. Now go caress some vinyl.
PS After I wrote this I noticed that there is a lot of criticism about this piece on the internet. I think his critics are missing the point - it's just an amusing take on some things the author misses about the pre-digital music era. I'm not sure why everyone is taking it so personally and/or seriously. Lighten up, people!
from CNET / Joan E. Solsman & Share Tibken: "Apple's iTunes scores U2's new album. You score it free. Every iTunes customer -- more than 500 million people, but who's counting? -- get the band's new album free in what CEO Cook calls the largest record release in music history." Full CNET article here. U2 "Songs Of Innocence" iTunes | Artist Site
This is too big of a story to ignore -- U2 and iTunes are literally giving the entire new U2 album away free to anyone with an iTunes account. Not just a single, no email list signup required, no messy zip file downloading from a band site, no recursive bandcamp authorization emails. I completely see the benefit from U2's side - they can launch a massive tour later this year for their fans that didn't have to think twice about obtaining the new album. Also, they're getting press in publications like Forbes, CNET & WSJ that normally wouldn't cover a new U2 release. For iTunes, I guess its just a huge loss leader to get people to the store. Or maybe U2 even paid out some version of the profit that Apple would otherwise collect on such a huge release. Maybe Apple thinks this will bring in those remaining few holdouts that don't yet have an iTunes account, or maybe they just did it so Amazon wouldn't do it. Hmm that last one seems the most likely!
Here's a Wall Street Journal article that reveals some more of the machinations behind this free release. U2, Apple and the Deal Behind Getting ‘Songs of Innocence’ Free of Charge They mention U2's major label, Universal, but not the publisher, I'm curious what deal was struck there to pay the publisher for the mechanical licenses. Is this a new model for album releases? Only a few bands have the market power to pull this off, and persuade their major label, their publisher and an online distributor to go along with it. Regardless of how much money/benefit all parties made off of the deal (per the WSJ article), I'm impressed that these entities so entrenched in the standard music business model were brave enough to try it. I do think this model can work for baby bands, especially those that are unsigned and retain the rights to their publishing, and many smaller bands do give their music away free on their sites or bandcamp, hoping that translates to fans that will buy tickets and merch when they come to town.
A few last thoughts/notes:
- I downloaded the album with surprisingly little hassle--from the front page of the iTunes store, click on the link that says 'Purchased' under the QUICK LINKS menu on the far right side. Then you'll see the album with a little cloud symbol in its top right corner. When you click on that the album will download into your iTunes library. I'm listening to it right now and it's good --better than their last few by a long shot.
- The album liner notes have a nice dedication to Paul McGuinness, their long, longtime manager who they parted ways with last year. That's sweet.
- Anybody else find it ironic that the liner notes are formatted and typed as though they were done on an old-fashioned typewriter font? That's so dissonant with the most high-tech album release of all time that I've got to think its on purpose.
- Since U2 engineered such an impressive feat, can the next thing on their to-do list be to make Tim Cook fix iTunes so that album digital booklets can be viewed within the app? It's so awkward to look at it in a separate Acrobat window. Should be child's play to Apple after pulling this release off.
From www.sleater-kinney.com: On October 21st, Sub Pop Records will release 'Start Together,' a 3,000-copy limited edition deluxe vinyl box set comprised of remastered editions of Sleater-Kinney's seven studio albums spanning 1995 to 2005. The set will include all seven albums pressed on colored vinyl and is accompanied by a 44-page hardcover book featuring never-before-seen photos of the band, as well as a limited edition print. The remastered albums will be released individually on CD and black vinyl on the same day. All are available digitally today as of September 2nd. Full announcement on the remastered releases here.
This is one of my all-time favorite bands and any fan would want this box set I'm sure! The combination of these three musicians was magical, and the fact that they were women that rocked just like the men made it that much more satisfying. I think I might want the vinyl ... although the CDs would be great too ... cannot wait to browse the photo book!
Excerpted from NPR's First Listen: Hamilton Leithauser, "Black Hours" by Stephen Thompson: "The singer largely tones down the briskly jangled rush of The Walkmen's sound throughout Black Hours, as he steers many of its songs toward a slow-burning seethe that suits him well. But there's still a looseness to the record that allows Leithauser to play around on new terrain ...". Read the rest of NPR's review here.
I've said before in this very space, don't get too bummed out when your favorite band breaks up because it might lead to something delicious. After seven fine albums with the Walkmen and 10+ years, I don't blame Mr. Leithauser for wanting to try something different. Much of what I loved about The Walkmen is still found in his new work, but its also more intimate and allows for a more profound listen if you give it a chance.
#MusicMonday AND Emmy night, seems like an appropriate time for a Fargo Music Wrap-Up since they received SEVENTEEN Emmy nominations, second only to Game Of Thrones. Fargo was an absolute delight to work on, it was somewhat magical how everything came together each and every episode -- which is not to say it wasn't a lot of hard work by everyone in the Post department, editors, sound designers, mixers, vfx and producers alike! We were always very conscious of keeping the tone consistent and not breaking the Fargo 'spell', to that end we relied heavily on Jeff Russo's gorgeous score which was recorded by musicians in Prague - in the same room where Einstein first presented his theory of relativity! See what I mean about magical? Go here if you want more info about the score, and read on for the list of songs that we licensed for the TV Series.
Licensed Songs in Fargo Season 1, Episodes 5-10
[table colwidth="20|100|350|100|50"]Ep,Scene,Song,Artist,Links 5,"Opening song, general store",Wildwood Flower,The Carter Family,"Amazon~~iTunes~~Artist Site" 6,Don's demise,Easter Vigil: Litany,Benedictine Nuns of the~~Abbey of Notre-Dame~~& d'Argentan,"Amazon~~iTunes~~" 6,Happy Stavros drives,Requiem: Sanctus,London Symphony Chorus~~Royal Philharmonic Orch.~~conducted by Richard Hickox,"Amazon" 6,Lester is winning,Piccola,Adriano Celentano,"Amazon~~iTunes~~Artist Site" 7,Mr. Rundle aquacizes,Round n’ Round,Junior Mays Group,"Amazon~~iTunes~~" 7,Lester visits Gina,Trouble Trouble,Betty Roche,"Amazon~~~~" 8,Gus comes home,The Time Was Right,Annie Ross,"Amazon~~iTunes~~" 8,Family dinner,Dallas (from The Odessa~~Sessions),Flatlanders,"Amazon~~iTunes~~Artist Site" 8,Lester in hotel lounge,Midnight Love,Tennishero,"Amazon~~iTunes~~Artist Site" 9,A dentist works on a patient,Yodel Boogie,Wylie and the Wild West,"Amazon~~iTunes~~Artist Site" 9,Malvo puts on a record,Green Tambourine,The Lemon Pipers,"Amazon~~iTunes~~" 9,Malvo and Bert discuss Bert’s brother,East Coast Raga,The Donkeys,"Amazon~~iTunes~~Artist Site" 9,Malvo in hotel lounge,Midnight Love,Tennishero,"Amazon~~iTunes~~Artist Site" 9,Family breakfast,Lonely Melody,Dorothy Ashby,"Amazon~~iTunes~~" 10,Lester establishes his alibi,Morning,Steve Turre,"Amazon~~iTunes~~Artist Site" 10,Molly joins Gus & Greta watching TV,"Fargo, North Dakota",Carter Burwell,"Amazon~~~~" [/table]
I've worked on many great pilots that didn't get picked up, to be honest. But it would have been particularly heartbreaking if this near-perfect pilot and concept didn't get a shot. I music supervised the pilot in April 2014 and it was one of the first series picked up by NBC this year. The wonderful script was written and developed by Adam Armus and Kay Foster (Heroes producers) along with Peter Horton, who also brilliantly directed the pilot. Word is it won't air until Winter 2015 because Peter wanted to shoot in Morocco, as he did the pilot, which created a beautiful and dangerous landscape for the international part of the story. You can read more about it on the NBC Odyssey site, they liken it to "Traffic", I think it's more like "Homeland" with a corporate corruption angle instead of CIA intrigue. I'll post more about the music here when we actually get started. And P.S. the cast is super-talented and super HOT!
There's a fine festival taking place in L.A. this very weekend, FYF Fest with Phoenix, Interpol, The Strokes, Slowdive (what?), Slint (whaaaat?) . But on the chance that you just had surgery and are laid up in bed, out of funds, hate crowds or can't find a babysitter for the tots, here's a great alternative: watch the British classic Reading & Leeds festival from home this weekend. Vampire Weekend, Arctic Monkeys, Jake Bugg and QOTSA? I'm in. No plane ticket or tent required. Here's a handy guide from NME as to set times. Reading & Leeds Festival 2014 - NME's Guide To What To Watch From Home
From NY Times/Dave Itskoff "ITSKOFF: You’re known for being a prolific songwriter, yet your new album, “Ryan Adams,” is your first in three years. What took so long? ADAMS: Some of that time was life, like yardwork, walking the dogs. I made a record with Glyn Johns, and we spent a bunch of money on it too. Then I had to go sit at a dinner table with my manager and the head of Capitol Records and say, “Hey, man, you can’t put this out.” It was about losing my grandmother. It was too sad."
Nice interview with Ryan Adams in the NY Times (his new album comes out Sep 9), although it's clearly sensationalist of them to highlight the weed comment. Ryan mentions that he lost his grandmother which even makes me sad because I read about her in his introduction to "Our Noise", the book about Superchunk and Merge Records. His introduction to that book was so eloquent, heartfelt, and unexpected that it remains lodged in my memory like a shiny penny. Here is an excerpt, which I typed in by hand, (apologies copyright gods) but maybe a few of you will get interested in the book. It's a must for 90's indie rock fans. You know who you are.
Your Noise-My Noise
by Ryan Adams
All my favorite records and your records crackle like summertime crackles like fried eggs stove-side or accidental fireworks backyard heavy in North Carolina on the coast--mid-day it gets so hot even inside, in the cool, the blazing waves of electric orange light pant like a litter of starving dogs just outside the gate--yeah, sometimes you need comics or records to get you through until the dust settles and the damp evening can cool your brains down enough to see past your own stupid face. That was me. Me looking at my first 7-inch record. I was all "what" and "huh," you know ...
Merge 7-inch singles came packaged like candy. They also looked a little like comics, which was good because I liked both and I liked girls so much they scared me so it all seemed like the perfect distraction, at least to me, and surely to my grandmother, who would patiently listen with me on our portable record player in the wood-paneled kitchen while she baked this or that cake or whatever--she liked how much cymbal crashing was going on--somehow overlooking the melodic weirdness or angst, how forgiving and awesome those moments--in fact before I had money for records she would write the checks and mail them for each PO-boxed 7-inch I desired in exchange for however many times the lawn got mowed but I did that anyway so really she funded my habit, embarrassingly.
He goes on it great detail about what receiving these 7" records in the mail meant to a young South Carolina misfit. Eventually he met Mac (of Superchunk) at a show and everafter pestered him with questions about his record label, making 7"s, the record business, etc. It's really a sweet story. And that's all just an introduction to the book that goes on to relate the story of Superchunk and Merge Records and many more stories of music in the 90's. You really should Buy The Book!
"In an office near the back of his 25,000-square-foot warehouse in São Paulo, Zero Freitas, 62, slipped into a chair, grabbed one of the LPs stacked on a table and examined its track list. He wore wire-rimmed glasses, khaki shorts and a Hard Rock Cafe T-shirt; his gray hair was thin on top but curled along his collar in the back. Studying the song list, he appeared vaguely professorial. In truth, Freitas is a wealthy businessman who, since he was a child, has been unable to stop buying records. “I’ve gone to therapy for 40 years to try to explain this to myself,” he said.
His compulsion to buy records, he says, is tied up in childhood memories: a hi-fi stereo his father bought when Freitas was 5 and the 200 albums the seller threw in as part of the deal. Freitas was an adolescent in December 1964 when he bought his first record, a new release: “Roberto Carlos Sings to the Children,” by a singer who would go on to become one of Brazil’s most popular recording stars. By the time he finished high school, Freitas owned roughly 3,000 records.
After studying music composition in college, he took over the family business, a private bus line that serves the São Paulo suburbs. By age 30, he had about 30,000 records. About 10 years later, his bus company expanded, making him rich. Not long after that, he split up with his wife, and the pace of his buying exploded. “Maybe it’s because I was alone,” Freitas said. “I don’t know.” He soon had a collection in the six figures; his best guess at a current total is several million albums."
There are many things I could have written about today, but this man touches my heart. I love him more than a little, and if I were not already married, might in fact send him a proposal. He is singlehandedly saving vinyl, an art form that is unique, precious, and captures a moment in time like no other. He is preserving it and making a library (I might say a sanctuary) that people can visit, learn about and either re-live or begin to appreciate this art form. This exact same idea occurred to me several years ago when I saw a documentary about a man in New York with a million records that he couldn't sell. I daydreamed about getting a grant to buy them, and bringing them to a Culver City warehouse and making a library where students of music could have access to this amazing archive. I am so pleased to know that someone wealthy is carrying out my plan in an even grander style than I dreamed of. This is the sort of thing rich people =should= do with their money but rarely do. Hail Zero Freitas, the saviour of vinyl.
From NME.com: "Last week something really exciting happened in the world of music. Musicians Cat Power, Kim Gordon, Yoko Ono and Courtney Love joined with artists such as Marina Abramovic and Pussy Riot and other creative people to support a new revolutionary venture in the form of an educational platform for teenage girls."
She also has a solution -- she's helping a lot of other creatives start an online imagination school for girls called The School Of Doodle. You can see their Kickstarter video here, the school is just in the beginning phases but currently being tested by the people it was designed for, teenage girls. I love that the internet can be used for something this awesome. I'm reminded of a wonderful book I just read called "The Diamond Age", a postcyberpunk novel by Neal Stephenson which details a future in which a certain set of teenage girls get creatively educated and basically get set up to take over the world. I know you can leap to a stereotype of a shallow, annoying, frivolous teenage girl but that's not what these girls are like. They're thoughtful, resourceful, strong, caring and resilient. And I think Cat Power and her buddies are on the right track to harness the imagination and determination of teenage girls. I'd rather be with them than against them, that's for sure!
"It takes only a couple of dedicated people to build a music scene. If what they do is righteous and resonates, listeners searching for community will gather. If, like Burger Records, what they envision becomes reality, fans will pack clubs to pogo, slam, stage-dive and sing along.
As proved by the scrums of believers dancing at Saturday's sold-out Burger a-Go-Go, a wild, celebratory, festival of girl punk centered on Fullerton's electrifying Burger label and record store, they'll share, support and spread the word. They'll even help revive a dying recording format, the cassette, by buying tapes at five bucks a pop to play in the TEAC deck that Dad never threw away.
Starring a team of underground bands bent on injecting fresh fuel into catchy three- and four-chord power jams, Burger's fest offered a deft, joyous, seamlessly delivered lineup of acts including Shannon and the Clams, the Coathangers, La Sera, the Muffs, Bleached, Dum Dum Girls and Best Coast. Each ripped through quick songs within quick sets on three different stages at the Observatory in Santa Ana and set the dance floors aloft.
That every band on the roster was fronted by a woman seemed both beside the point and exactly the point. Most rock festivals, after all, are default guy-rock gatherings, because fellas with guitars have run the scene, the biz and the studios. So a focus on the female perspective stands to reason."
I love love love what Burger Records is doing out of Fullerton - my birthplace by the way! It is easy to find examples of music getting more and more mainstream and commercialized, labels and record stores going under. But this proves that there will ALWAYS be a place for independent thinking that will appeal to music fans. It makes me happy.