Sunday, January 20, 2008

Out of the Blue (I'm a star like Debbie Gibson!)

Acid Planet is a website where musicians can posts recordings of their songs. People log in, listen to music and write reviews of each other's work. There is some sort of chart system whereby people who get the most comments rise in the rankss. I joined in October of 2003 when I first figured out how to record on my pc. It was great fun, especially as a super newbie songwriter and performer, to hear comments from strangers on my music. Of course, the way the chart system is set up makes it sort of a mutual back-stratching society. I write a comment for you, you write a comment for me, we both rise in the charts. Frankly, I've never looked at the charts, but for a while I was sort of obsessed with Acid Planet. It was a way for my far away friends to hear what I was doing and for me to get some confidence boosts in the relative anonymity of cyberspace.

It's been two years since I've posted ANYTHING on Acid Planet. Maybe every six months I'll get an email that someone has reviewed a song and I think "OH! I forgot that was out there!" A couple days a go I got an email from Acid Planet saying congratulations, I had been included in an Acid Planet podcast. I thought hmf, whatever. And then I started getting review notice after review notice.

I just listened to the podcast. Okay, I listened until I heard myself (and thankfully, I'm the second song!). It was bizarro to hear the podcaster announce me like a dj and then play a song I posted two years ago and haven't even played since! And now, apparently people are listening to the podcast, then finding my Acid Planet page and listening to my music! Wierd! And a lot of it is old...and not so good!

If you want to hear the podcast click here. You can fast forward to about 5:50 to hear me. If you want to take a stroll down memory lane and listen to old Emily Dunbar "hits" (aka: mostly crappy home recordings but a few nice ones recorded by and with Jay Bayles--I recommend "did you not think of me") you can click here.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

My New Hat

From Interweave Crochet Winter 2007:

Friday, January 11, 2008

a rose by any other name still rocks the 80's synthpop

In March The Listening Room is having its Artists in Residence concert featuring local songwriters including yours truly. Today I was working on a little bluegrass version of Bad Connection by Yaz that I'd like to play for the show. I love Yaz. Bad Connection. Don't Go. Only You. All fantastic British synth-pop gems which made a big impression on me in my youth. My sister had a copied cassette tape of Yaz's album Upstairs at Eric's. I listened to it over and over--I remember being in seventh or eigth grade when I first heard it, so 1987-88. I know 80s syth-pop doesn't seem to lend itself to bluegrass, but its gonna rock.

I don't know what my attraction to British synth-pop is, especially considering that I play acoustic guitar and now listen to mostly acoustic-based artists and bands. Those songs are just so catchy and I keep wanting to cover them. When I bought my accordion, the first song that I figured out how to play was Depeche Mode's song Just Can't Get Enough. Bad Connection and Just Can't Get Enough are two of my all time favorite songs.

I started wondering what happen to Yaz. I knew Yaz's singer was Alison Moyet because when the first Very Special Christmas album came out in 1987, she sang The Coventry Carol. I knew instantly who she was (though I didn't recognize her name on the cassette) because her voice is unmistakable. I heard nothing of Yaz until Only You made the finale of the BBC's The Office and showed up in Napolean Dynamite. I wanted to fill in the gaps so I went to Wikipedia.

Get this: Alison Moyet's partner in Yaz (know in Britain as Yazoo--who knew?!) was Vince Clarke. Vince Clarke started out in Depeche Mode. He WROTE Just Can't Get Enough (1981). Clarke quit Depeche Mode when they started getting big, formed Yaz and wrote Bad Connection, Only You, etc.! Yaz split in 1983. Clarke went on to start Erasure!

So, Vince Clarke is my new hero, my new 80's British synth-pop songwriting hero.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

headlining ladies

I liked Hillary in the debate tonight. I hate having to qualify that was thoughts about "electibility."
I can't believe Britney got sent to the funny farm and was then let out again.