A Final Word on Fake Off Season 2

Fake OffI’m sure all of my friends in real life and on social media are more than over all things Fake Off by now (#sorrynotsorry) but I had to mention it at least once here on the blog. With the final episode having aired on Wednesday, and the season officially over, it seemed an appropriate time for a debrief from the musical perspective.

What is Fake Off?
For any readers not Facebook friends with me you can find various descriptions of the show and what a “fake” is on the show website, but in my opinion the only way to understand is to watch a performance (see below). Trying to envision the show using the term “fake” as a starting point will only lead to confusion.

Since I don’t always have the opportunity to force the person I’m conversing with to watch a video (I know, it’s unbelieveable that I don’t have any performances bookmarked on my phone) here is the description I’ve been using over and over for the past few months.

Fake Off is a performance competition show where 10 teams (e.g. dance crews, theater groups) are challenged to create 90 second performances on a theme. The performances are fully-mounted mini-productions, with professional sets, props, costumes and special effects (confetti!). There is some voiceover (looking at you Tribe Of Fools) but for the most part performances are entirely visual, set to music. Teams are judged on how impressively they tell the story of their theme using their particular skill(s).
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Now Digging / RIVVRS

Rivvrs_14Give me some rowdy anthemic choruses and a warm rootsy guitar and I am sold.

Loving this EP by RIVVRS, also known as Brandon Zahursky. It’s only four songs and all are worth a several listens.
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Now Digging / Marian Hill

Marian Hill
It is very rare that a particular song sticks in my brain.

Normally when listening to music, I forget what I listened to almost immediately. Even if it is a great song. I listen, file, and move on. If I were to hear the same song a day or two later chances are I would know I’d heard it, but not be able to identify the artist or song title in a million years.

Not so with Marian Hill. I vividly remember hearing “Got It” for the first time on KCRW. I was in my car and think I may have actually said, “Ooh!” out loud, to no one. The same reaction as when I first encountered the intro to “Settle Down” by Kimbra.
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Now Digging / Durango Songwriters Film & TV Expo Favorites Playlist

View from the boardwalk outside the Crowne Plaza Ventura Beach Hotel

I recently had the pleasure of attending my first ever Durango Songwriters Film & TV Expo in Ventura, CA, one of three such events every year (the others take place in Santa Ynez, CA and Denver, CO).

For two and a half days straight myself and fellow music supervisors in film, TV, advertising and trailers, were bombarded with music and musicians from all over the country.

Attention Artists and Songwriters: This is the conference you want to go to. I probably shouldn’t be spreading this around, but even the music supervisors get excited about this one. This was evident in the caliber and number of professionals in attendance. Many names I had heard and wanted to meet or get to know for years, many I didn’t know I wanted to meet; top notch credits and companies spanning from Breaking Bad to BBDO. It may have been related to the beachside location or the drink tickets, but everyone was down for a great weekend.
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Sessions At The Steps / Act As If [VIDEO]

Act As If_PressPhoto1.1In this line of work I meet a lot of artists. Most of them seem like they happily stumbled into a licensing deal and my presence. Not so with Peter Verdell, who is one of the most professional, savvy, driven and hardest-working musicians I’ve ever encountered…in addition to being a brilliant songwriter and talented performer with his band, Act As If. He is someone I both enjoy being around and cannot wait to do business with.

Since the right opportunity for a film or TV project has yet to arise, asking him to perform at my house for the very first installment of a new showcase series would have to do. It was a huge honor to host Peter, Sarah and Derek for the inaugural Sessions At The Steps, where they played stripped down versions of tunes from their latest album, Steady, for an intimate and appreciative group of music industry professionals.
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