Baby Got Back (In the Style of Glee)

January 26th, 2013

This went up in the iTunes store a lot faster than I expected (nice work there Tunecore), and some of you have already found it:

iTunes: Baby Got Back (In the Style of Glee)
GooglePlay: Baby Got Back (In the Style of Glee)
AmazonMP3: Baby Got Back (In the Style of Glee)

I’ve released this track as a single – it should be on iTunes, Amazon, and Google Play eventually if it’s not already. It’s a cover of Glee’s cover of my cover of Sir Mix-a-Lot’s song, which is to say it’s EXACTLY THE SAME as my original version. I’m releasing this under the same Harry Fox license I used for the 2005 release, so Mix will get all the royalties due to him. I’ll donate the proceeds from all sales that happen between now and the end of February to two charities: The VH1 Save the Music Foundation, and The It Gets Better Project. (fine print: iTunes will get their cut first of course, then I’ll deduct enough to cover my licensing fees, and split the rest between the two. iTunes sometimes takes a long time to report sales, sometimes even a couple of months, so I won’t be able to do the math and make the donation until I have the numbers. But I’ll let you know when I’ve gotten the amount and made the donation.)

I’ve been reading your tweets and posts and I’m truly grateful for your support – honestly, this has been a very stressful time, and it means so much to see how many of you are behind me. I’ve been trying to figure out a positive way to channel all this energy. I haven’t asked you guys to take any specific action throughout this thing, but now I am asking: buy the track, give it some stars, leave a comment (please be civil), and tell everyone you can. Call it a form of protest, awareness raising, viral PR hackitude, whatever you like. I don’t know how big this will get, but there’s a potential to make a lot of noise this way – imagine if this thing charts! And failing that, we will create some real world impact by raising a lot of money for two great causes that are directly related to the Glee brand. There’s your win-win.

Maybe this is something that the Glee people would like to give some EXPOSURE. Though, in order to do that they’d have to make some kind of public acknowledgement that I exist. We’ll see! Maybe they’ll even want to match the gesture, and donate all their February proceeds for their version too!

I will have a lot more to say about this situation soon, most likely Monday. Stay tuned…

He's got science to do!

Check out the Store!

If you like to download your music, you can get individual songs or whole albums, either in 224K MP3 format, open OGG format or in full quality FLAC. You can also purchase downloads from the iTunes music store and other online music stores.

As for CDs, don’t feel bad, I still buy them too sometimes. You can get them on Amazon.

Baby Got Back and Glee

January 18th, 2013

This morning, someone pointed me to this:

http://glee.wikia.com/wiki/Baby_Got_Back

Admittedly it seems to be an unofficial wiki, and I can’t find any clearly FOX-based source that lists this track as a part of episode 11 of season 4. So I guess the jury’s still out on whether or not this is an official Glee recording.

If it is, I have some questions about how IP works in terms of this song. It’s a cover of a Sir Mix-a-Lot song obviously, but I wrote a new melody for it, which this recording uses. Back when I released it, I bought the statutory license to distribute my version of this song through Harry Fox. Creative Commons doesn’t come into play because it’s a cover song, and anyway my CC license specifies Non-Commercial.

A complicating factor is that, to my ears, it sounds like it actually uses the audio from my recording – not the vocals obviously, but the instruments sound EXTREMELY similar. And I could swear I hear the duck quack somewhere in the background there, though it’s hard to say if that’s just my ears expecting it.

Anyway, yes, weird. Exciting times! I’ll post any updates here.

UPDATE 1/18: No word from Glee or Fox, but I’ve seen screenshots of the song on Swedish iTunes listed with artist = Glee Cast. My lawyers are researching the copyright issues, and I am trying to figure out how to isolate the duck quack, or otherwise test the theory that some of my tracks are in there. This side-by-side comparison is crazy: https://soundcloud.com/alacrion/joco-v-glee

MORE UPDATE 1/20: Still no new info. At this point I’m still trying to figure out what’s going on, if this is really Glee, etc. We’ll know more this coming week when the episode it’s supposed to be from actually airs, or if/when FOX actually has a comment about this. Until then, while I am really grateful for everyone’s support, I would suggest that we all chill out until we have the whole story. This is the internet after all – it’s a complicated place and it gets a lot of things wrong. If you want to take some kind of action, donate to the EFF or Creative Commons, which is a good thing to do anytime.

MORE MORE UPDATE 1/25: Well, they aired it, seemingly unchanged. And it’s now for sale in the US iTunes store. They also got in touch with my peeps to basically say that they’re within their legal rights to do this, and that I should be happy for the exposure (even though they do not credit me, and have not even publicly acknowledged that it’s my version – so you know, it’s kind of SECRET exposure). While they appear not to be legally obligated to do any of these things, they did not apologize, offer to credit me, or offer to pay me, and indicated that this was their general policy in regards to covers of covers. It does not appear that I have a copyright claim, but I’m still investigating the possibility (which I consider likely) that they used some or all of my audio. I’ll write something longer and more detailed about this when I can get my head together about it probably in a couple of days. Thanks for your support, but please continue not to burn anything down.

Last Shows of 2012

December 6th, 2012

Hello peoples!

We’re in the final stretch of this year, so buckle up!

The big headline: we’ve added a New York City show at City Winery on December 14th. Think of it as a sort of album release celebration/Christmas Spectacular. John Roderick and I will delight you with songs from our new Christmas album One Christmas at a Time, as well as a selection of your favorite me songs and him songs. Tickets still available: http://bit.ly/UPqC0O

The Deluxe Gift Box edition of One Christmas at a time can still be ordered in time for Christmas delivery in the US – shipping will likely start next week. After this weekend we won’t be able to promise by-Christmas delivery, so if you’re getting this as a gift for someone, best do it now: http://bit.ly/TXejyU

Are you getting excited about JoCo Cruise Crazy? Because I sure am. We’re nearing the close of the booking window at this point – we have to adjust the amount of cabins we have on hand to match demand as closely as possible so we don’t end up with a bunch of empties. So if you’re on the fence about going, don’t wait too long because soon our selection of cabin types is going to start getting limited. You should come!

Tour has been great, and this bus thing is amazing. Turns out all that driving was making me grumpy and tired, and now that I don’t have to do it, I’m only slightly grumpy and tired! Thanks to everyone who has come out to see us – the shows have been terribly fun for us to play. Just a few left and then that’s it for me this year…

12/6 Charlotte: http://bit.ly/QUzg0i
with John Roderick

12/7 Orlando: http://ticketf.ly/SopGPm
supershow with I Fight Dragons and MC Lars AND John Roderick

12/8 St. Petersburg: http://bit.ly/O38lz9
with John Roderick

12/14 New York City: http://bit.ly/UPqC0O
CHRISTMAS SPECTACULAR with John Roderick

OK!

Tour Update

December 2nd, 2012

You guys, I think I understand why people tour in busses. After years of starting every show day with a long drive in a minivan, it’s a great pleasure not to be driving at all. We go to sleep after a show and magically wake up in the new place. It’s more expensive than the other way for sure, but it means that I have time and energy for other things during the days. And I think it makes the shows better because I’m not starting every one with the road grumps. Right now I’m drinking coffee on a bus in a hotel parking lot, which may not sound glamorous, but definitely feels that way.

Shows have been wonderful – thanks so much to everyone for coming out to see us. The band has really been clicking lately, and it feels like we’ve been playing together for years. John Roderick and I have been slowly but surely working songs from One Christmas at a Time into the set, and they’re awful fun to play. And of course it’s nice to see all you folks in this part of the country again – it’s been a while!

We’ve been doing these tour bus happy hours. It’s one of the things that I wouldn’t be able to fit in if it weren’t for this bus situation. Now I get to enjoy a cocktail and some conversation with a bunch of strangers on my tour bus right before my rock show, LIKE A NORMAL PERSON. I can tell that some of you don’t really like Manhattans and are just pretending to drink them, but I don’t care because Manhattans are delicious. There’s still time to enter these various contests for the remaining cities.

Yesterday was my birthday. In what has become a long-standing tradition, the superfans from the forums got together and made a celebratory video called JoCo Day. I don’t say it as often as I think it, so it’s worth saying again now: you fans are amazing. Your support over the years is an ongoing phenomenon that continues to surprise and delight me. Thank you.

File under “where do they find the time?”: Susan made 250 cupcakes with different JoCo song themes for the Houston show last night. I’ve never made 250 of anything in my life. There are now an awful lot of cupcakes on the bus. Here are the various species in all their glory:

Perhaps you have been following the adventures of @RealBusPig and @RealBusCat on Twitter. It would take too long to explain, so I won’t. But anyway, big ups to Molly, who sent me this robot cat for my birthday:

And finally, huge thanks to John Paul, who works the Environmental Control and Life Support System desk in ISS Mission Control at NASA, and who took us on an amazing tour of the Johnson Space Center. We were there watching the live feed from emmer effing space while the emmer effing astronauts were going to sleep for the day. Crazytown. Here’s us with the flight director:

So yeah. Going pretty well I guess. Another week of shows coming up…

12/2 Dallas
12/4 Nashville
12/5 Atlanta
12/6 Charlotte
12/7 Orlando (supershow with I Fight Dragons and MC Lars)
12/8 St. Petersburg
12/14 New York City (One Christmas at a Time Show with John Roderick)