Friday, November 30, 2007

Blog Negligence

Now that the marathon is over, life has been entirely about the deadlines. Hence, the lack of recent blog activity.

Provided I make the deadlines (it's looking iffy right now!), I should be back soon with pics from Philly and a few other super intellectual thoughts about, um... super intellectual things.

In the meantime, entertain yourselves here, here, here, here, and here.

As you were.

Friday, November 16, 2007

The Dollhouse

Joss Whedon finally returns to TV!!! Okay, I know I'm slow to report this, but I'm super excited! The news broke over two weeks ago that Joss Whedon has been given the go ahead by Fox to pen seven issues of a new series entitled "The Dollhouse."

The Hollywood Reporter reports:
"Buffy the Vampire Slayer" creator Joss Whedon is returning to television with Dollhouse," a new sci-fi project starring "Buffy" alumna Eliza Dushku that has received a seven-episode commitment from Fox.

"Dollhouse," from 20th Century Fox TV, is Whedon's first TV project since his 2002 Fox drama "Firefly."

The drama, whose license fee is said to be in the $1.5 million-$2 million-per-episode range, stars Dushku as Echo, a member of a group of men and women who are imprinted with different personalities for different assignments. In between tasks they are mind-wiped, living like children in Dollhouse, a futuristic dorm/lab. They have no memories of their previous lives, until Echo begins to try to find out who she was.

"Dollhouse" came out of a lunch between Whedon and Dushku in September, shortly after the actress had signed a development deal with 20th TV and Fox. Whedon was giving her advice about writers and types of shows that might be good for her but wasn't interested in venturing into TV himself because he was trying to get a couple of movie projects off the ground at the time.

Continue reading...

There's also a great interview with Joss here and more info here.

Hopefully, negotiations with the WGA will be settled soon and this project will not be delayed. I don't think I could take another Joss disappointment.

I have to wonder, if I can convince Joss to have lunch withe me to discuss my career path, perhaps I can fulfill my favorite long run daydream of writing the scores to a Joss Whedon show?

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

She ain't heavy, she's my sister

Go see my sister, Jessica L. Fenton, who is only heavy in bizarro world, play a night of original acoustic duo music at Googie's Lounge this Thursday, November 8 at 9:30. No cover, one drink minimum.

Why support this nepotism? Because this city makes it incredibly hard for good music to be supported, and her music deserves to be given a chance by those eagerly sought after fans who come to the gig purely out of musical curiosity, not because they want to sound cool recapping their weekend at the water cooler on Monday morning or harbor a sense of obligation (not that we musicians don't appreciate the support from our friends and family who are often the only patrons at our shows).

If you know anything about my music, expect to hear quite the opposite from Jessica. While I like to think it was the many hours I slaved with my alto over the Bb Blues Scale along with Jamey A. and the play-a-long crew back in high school that influenced Jessie's musicality, the real credit should be given to my mother. We grew up hearing her play the baddest folk guitar in church those catholic priests had ever heard! There's no doubt that hearing my mom play every Saturday night for the "folk" mass as well as around the house occasionally, though not nearly enough, both Jessie and I, as well as our two brothers, were given a deep sense of the functionality of music- I don't think any of us really minded going to church those Saturday nights. It was worth it to hear my mom play and her friend, Carol Hayes, who had the most beautiful voice I had ever heard, sing. While I chose the academic route, Jessica followed my mom's path, and learned to play by ear. Her music is a prime example of why knowing all the music theory in the world can not make up for having an incredible ear.

When you come on Thursday, expect to hear a slight departure from her loud, full band "alternative pop rock" sound. This set will feature Jess on acoustic guitar and Jonathon Roberts, of her band The Stairdivers, on Googie's beautiful white baby grand piano. Those familiar with her music can look forward to hearing her more popular tunes, "What were you expecting," and "Wool." I am looking forward to hearing her lesser known tunes, "Hey, It's Ok," and "Routine Continuing." Jessie is looking forward to the beautiful white baby grand.

Check out Jessica's website and myspace, and we'll see you on Thursday.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Through the Eyes of a Monk Competitor

2007 Monk Competition semi-finalist Nadje Noordhuis guest blogs about her L.A. experience:

Selected as a semi-finalist, I was excited, anxious, focused, honored, happy. And the most nervous I had ever been in my

- Meeting the other competitors and finding them to be genuinely lovely people, as well as ridiculous talented
- Not having to talk about being a female musician – it is 2007 after all
- Playing with the rhythm section of Geoff Keezer, Reginald Veal and Carl Allen
- Realizing what I need to work on musically
- Staying in a fancy hotel and sleeping diagonally in a king size bed
- Sharing an elevator with Marilyn Manson
- Being inspired by the live performances of Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Joni Mitchell and Sting
- Hearing a myriad of trumpet players do what they do best
- Feeling a new personal confidence, as well as being a part of something bigger than what I had believed possible for myself
- Free wine and cheese at the after-party
- In and Out burgers
- Charlie’s hilarious dinner napkin origami
- Splurging at the hairdressers for the first time in eighteen months
- Meeting the James Bond stunt car driver on the plane back to JFK
- Realizing that maybe, just maybe, if I break my current average of three small group gigs in the last five years, I could be a much better musician than I am now
- Realizing for the umpteenth time how incredibly supportive and beautiful my friends and family are to me

- Having my legs shake uncontrollably with nerves whilst trying to play soft and low
- Not being able to drink coffee with an upset nervous stomach
- Waiting, waiting, waiting, waiting for it to be over
- Getting a blister from my new shoes
- Realizing that I have to keep worrying about paying rent for the next year
- Realizing for the first time in seven years that I have no paid gigs in the book. Tabula Rasa.

Favorite Quotes:

“Hey! Nice tone!” -Roy Hargrove, walking down the hallway of the Roosevelt Hotel

“Are you the girl that played the flugelhorn? Gimme a hug!” -Clark Terry

“You play beautifully” -Thelonious Monk Jr
Congratulations on making it to the semifinals, Nad! We are proud of you!