Friends, Fans and Followers

April 20th, 2009

Scott Kirsner is a writer who, inexplicably, interviewed me once. I was somewhere in the earlier parts of Thing a Week, and I was just seeing the hint of the glimmer of the possibility of some kind of semi-success. He was hoping to pitch me as a feature article to a certain important magazine about technology, but that feature never materialized, I think probably because Scott was ahead of the curve. He already knew what the world did not: that I was destined to become a big, fat, shining superstar.

So now he’s put me in his book, which is also very nice of him. I mention it not just because I’m in it, but because Scott is a very smart and well-spoken fellow who ran an excellent panel with me and some other folks at SXSWi, and this book looks kind of awesome. It’s about this new kwazy internet thing we’re all trying to figure out, where suddenly everyone has the tools to create and publish, and so reaching your audience is simultaneously very easy and very hard. He interviews a bunch of artists of various types about how they deal with this paradox, how they launched and built their creative enterprises. If you’re wondering how you might turn your creative thing into a money-pooping cow, it’s really helpful to read about how lots of other people did it. Like I always say: 1) find the good ideas and then 2) steal them.

It’s called Friends, Fans and Followers, and you can preview it here, and buy it here.

Three Mysteries, Solved

April 9th, 2009

Where the hell is Jonathan Coulton

1. Millionaire Matchmaker – you were not imagining it, the bachelor named Alex sang “Soft Rocked By Me” on the Bravo show Millionaire Matchmaker. They did get permission from me before doing this, and the last time I was in Vegas Alex even took me out to a delicious Thai lunch to thank me. It was my first lunch date with a millionaire. Hopefully not my last – AM I RIGHT?!

2. Ernie Wade – April Fools! You all know that by now, and most of you knew it pretty early on. I meant to juice up a little more doubt and controversy, but when it came down to it I couldn’t keep a straight face. Also there were enough people in on the joke tweeting and blogging about it that I enjoyed watching it all unfold. In case you missed it, the idea took shape in Vegas (erm, I guess there are a lot of things that do NOT stay in Vegas) when I was at the New Media Expo playing the Coverville 500 concert. At the table were me, Len, Patrick and Tom, and I hope nobody else that I’m forgetting because I’m an insensitive jerk. We thought it would be funny to manufacture a scandal in which it is discovered that all my songs are stolen. Because he is crazy, Tom actually followed through and created a site and recorded a couple of songs: Code Monkey and Warrior Robot Revenge. Say want you want about these kinds of April Fools Day pranks, but there are some really nice touches on the site, in the photos, the cassette labels, and especially in the songs. My favorite is the photo on this page captioned “Here is a picture I had of Ernie driving his truck…” And the songs have a perfect bizarro-world-JoCo quality to them – poor Ernie really loved Jan.

3. Where the hell is Jonathan Coulton? Last week we closed on the sale of my old home and the purchase of my new home, and on Monday we moved. I’ve been too preoccupied to blog or twitter – sorry if you’re waiting for me to get back to you, or even just let you know that I’m alive. I’m still in Brooklyn, not too far away from where I was, but kind of on the fringe of Stroller Town itself. The new place has some leaks and broken things, and of course my entire life is packed into lots of poorly labeled boxes. I can’t find anything, all is chaos. I had no internet until yesterday afternoon, which was painful. And my studio does not really exist at this point – it will only when I muster up the strength to find everything and plug it in again. The photo up top is my old studio room, now empty and sad.

Moving is weird. A lot happened in that old apartment – I entered as a childless writer of software, I leave as a twice bekidded musician, with Thing a Week and all the rest of it trailing out behind me. The new place has quite a bit to live up to. I’m hoping that soon it will actually feel more like home, and less like a showroom for a cardboard box company.

Sorry to have been so quiet. I will start making noise again soon.

I Totally Forgot

April 1st, 2009

To post anything about the NYC show. Isn’t that terrible? It was a great deal of fun, and if you missed it, you also missed this:

Yes, that is the Hungry March Band, and they are the nicest group of anarchist marching band hipster types you will ever meet.

And if you missed me at University of Arkansas last night, you missed a sound check (which the audience was lucky enough to see), and a set done WITHOUT A SET LIST. Very dangerous, but I think it worked out OK. Thank you Arkansonians.

In other news, some attorney friends of mine say it’s probably a good idea for me not to say anything about this.

JoCo Cannot Be Stopped

March 27th, 2009

So I guess I lied when I said that was the last of the Spring shows – INADVERTENTLY. Check it: a FREE concert at University of Arkansas next week, then Dallas, LA, and Solana Beach (the one near San Diego) in May.

Plus a special benefit show at the Birchmere on May 21 to benefit the Lung Transplant Foundation – a cause near and dear to my heart because my booking agent recently had both lungs replaced (you can go back and read that again if you want) and is doing really well. I don’t know what my booking agent would have done without these new lungs, and I don’t know what I would have done without my booking agent.

But enough about lungs, here are the details:

Friday March 27 at 8PM
Symphony Space (New York, NY) with Paul and Storm

http://tinyurl.com/dkzjoe

Tuesday March 31 at 7PM
Arkansas Union Theater (Fayetteville, AR)
FREE and open to the public!
(sorry for the late notice on this one, I thought it was students only)

Thursday April 23 at 8 PM
Lula Lounge (Toronto, ON) with Paul and Storm

http://tinyurl.com/czz9sn

Friday April 24 at 7:30 PM
Lula Lounge (Toronto, ON) with Paul and Storm

http://tinyurl.com/bxr6lb

Wednesday May 13 at 8PM
Granada Theater (Dallas, TX) with Paul and Storm

http://tinyurl.com/d9fslw

Thursday May 14 at 8PM
Belly Up Tavern (Solana Beach, CA) with Paul and Storm

http://tinyurl.com/ckyfjj

Sunday May 17 at 8:30PM
Largo (Los Angeles, CA) with Paul and Storm
For tix call (310) 855-0350
This one will sell out I think, so don’t wait too long.

Thursday May 21 at 7:30PM
The Birchmere (Alexandria, VA) with Chelsea Lee
Lung Transplant Foundation Benefit

http://tinyurl.com/ch8r3r

Tone Deaf Eagles

March 25th, 2009

In case you missed it during the internet telethon insanity that was RedNoseNet, here’s a video of me and Paul and Storm working on our new cover band project. (Please note: it is not too late to donate to Comic Relief.)