Seattle Interactive Conference THROWDOWN

October 23rd, 2012

If you’re going to be in Seattle on October 29th, may I recommend this historic live event, of which I’m a part:

It’s a once in a lifetime intersection of several entertainment empires. Who knows what will happen? Distill all those different kinds of fun, put them in a beaker, agitate and stand back: KA-POW! We are renting special tuxedos, so you know that we’re serious. I can promise you that there will be songs and comedy and talking, lots and lots of talking…

Salt Lake City – An Experiment

October 19th, 2012

Salt Lake City, the last ticket link for the Nov/Dec tour, has finally gone up. The reason for the delay was that we were working on the details of this experimental ticketing thing called Bring the Gig.

Here’s how it works. There are 40 funder slots available – basically 40 tickets that go on sale in advance of the rest of them. After two weeks (or sooner), these slots will theoretically be filled, and the rest of the tickets will go on sale. If you are one of these first 40 people, you get your money back if we get more than 160 people to come to the show.

It’s a pretty cool idea I think: get a core of fans to cover what you need to make the show happen, and then incentivize those to spread the word. It’s a little popup street team. In a world where I didn’t know that I was coming to Salt Lake City for sure, we’d set these funder numbers at a level to cover my travel and production expenses, but you know what, I’m still doing the show even if there are only 5 people there. I hope there are more than 5 people there.

So if you live in Salt Lake City and want to maybe see the show for free, go get your tickets now. And then tell everyone you know to get tickets too, and maybe you’ll get to see the show for free. Or not! Could be a disaster! Exciting! Honestly I have no idea if this is going to work, but as you know, I am a scientist. I like to watch what happens.

Either way, can’t wait to see you again SLC!

Much News

September 14th, 2012

Just sent this to the email list. I thought it would be a good thing to “post” on my “web log” as well, so the internet can read it. England/Sweden tour! Christmas album! Ask Me Another! Hodgman shows! More things!

Citizens:

Hello! I hope your Summer was as relaxing and indulgent as mine. I actually managed to stop looking at the internet for short stretches of time, which feels like a dangerous luxury when you’re in my line of work. What’s funny is that after a few days of vague anxiety, you forget all about what you’re missing. The internet is totally made up! The flip side of this is that now here we are in September and I have a ton of dropped threads sitting in my inbox. I AM ALREADY BEHIND. But it’s OK. There’s a lot of exciting stuff coming up this Fall. Allow me to illuminate you.

England and Sweden
Yes! So excited to be returning to a few cities in England, plus a bonus show in Sweden (it’s an experiment – I hope there is an audience HA HA). All acoustic shows with Paul and Storm opening: Stockholm, London, Birmingham, Bristol, Manchester. I’m sorry we won’t have time to make it to Ireland or Scotland this time around, but I’m certainly looking forward to the Jaffa Cakes. Still plenty of tickets left, if you know what I mean. Details and links below.

Ask Me Another
The new NPR quiz show I’m kinda sorta assistant hosting/Paul Shaffering has gotten a ton of positive feedback from the first thirteen episodes. It’s now being co-produced by WNYC here in New York, and will be coming back this Fall as a weekly show. We’re all very proud of how fun it is to perform in and hopefully listen to. Tickets are already on sale for the first six shows: http://tktwb.tw/U7Oay4. Unfortunately, I will only be able to make half of these (Nov 12th, Nov 19th, Dec 10th), but they’re lining up some excellent replacements for the shows I’m missing. Brooklyn types should come out and see us, and the rest of the nation will have to wait until we come to your town (which we may – stay tuned).

Seattle Interactive Conference
I will be appearing a couple of times at the Seattle Interactive Conference, October 29-30. I would love to tell you the details, but I don’t know them, and currently their site isn’t loading for me (you can’t, um, “interact” with it). I’ll be speaking and performing with John Roderick, John Hodgman, Scott Simpson, and Merlin Mann, and afterwards the internet will explode and contract to a singularity and then we will all be robots. Watch the skies!

Me and Hodgman in Massachusetts
For TWO NIGHTS ONLY, John Hodgman and I will put aside our longstanding famous person feud (?) and offer up stories and songs to the people of Massachusetts. Shows are Nov 2 at the Calvin in Northampton and Nov 3 at the Wilbur Theater in Boston. Tickets are on sale now – details and links below.

Everywhere Tour
This will be the last stretch of what we at JoCo Industries call “The Artificial Heart Tour.” Still waiting on a couple of confirmations, but basically we’ll start in LA and head across the Southern part of the country until we get to Florida, ROCKING AS WE GO: LA, San Diego, Salt Lake City (I hope), Denver, St. Louis (I hope also), Tulsa, Austin (I hope also ALSO), Dallas, Nashville, Atlanta, Charlotte, Orlando, and Tampa. These are all band shows. I don’t know yet who will be opening. I don’t have ticket links for anywhere but Dallas yet. I stink!

Christmas Album with John Roderick
I don’t know how soon I can let you hear it, but I’m excited to announce that John Roderick and I will be putting out an album of original Christmas songs sometime this Fall. I was in Seattle for a stretch of time around PAX, and we decided to get together and write and record and see what happened. What happened is that we experienced a legitimate CHRISTMAS MIRACLE, and also wrote one Hannukah song. It’s mostly just the two of us playing all the instruments, except that we got a little help on a few tunes from our friend Jason Finn, who likes to play the drums. Mixing is happening now. I’ll be sure and let everyone know the moment you can listen and obtain these soon-to-be-classic holiday songs.

Cruise, Still
I know we haven’t been talking about it much, but that’s because we’re strategizing. In not too long a time, we’ll have more details on event schedules, room assignments for those who have booked, and other various kinds of informations for you. Until then, if you haven’t booked yet, may I ask respectfully WHAT THE HELL YOU ARE DOING? It’s bigger and better than ever this year – we’re on a new ship and a new cruise line, and we’ve got performers from prior cruises plus a few who are JoCo Cruise virgins (Virgin Monkeys?). Listen, you know how lazy I am, right? You know I wouldn’t keep doing this if it wasn’t a ton of fun for me and everyone who attends. Are you ready? OK, book now: http://bit.ly/LCZyhg

Other Secret Things
[REDACTED]

OK, here are the show details:

Stockholm, Sweden – September 17
Acoustic, with Paul and Storm
Södra Teatern, 7:30 PM
Tickets: http://bit.ly/O8LL4i

London, UK – September 20
Acoustic, with Paul and Storm
Union Chapel, 7 PM
Tickets: http://bit.ly/NyjO77

Birmingham, UK – September 21
Acoustic, with Paul and Storm
MAC Theater, 7:30 PM
Tickets: http://bit.ly/MF1juq

Bristol, UK – September 22
Acoustic, with Paul and Storm
Colston Hall, 8 PM
Tickets: http://bit.ly/Q2467t

Manchester, UK – September 23
Acoustic, with Paul and Storm
Manchester Academy 2, 7 PM
Tickets: http://bit.ly/OObUEQ

Northampton, MA – November 2
With John Hodgman
Calvin Theater, 8 PM
Tickets: http://bit.ly/Q2OQDL

Boston, MA – November 3
With John Hodgman
Wilbur Theater, 7 PM
Tickets: http://bit.ly/SEIroh

Brooklyn, NY – November 12 and November 19
Ask Me Another – Season Two!
Bell House, 7:30 PM
Tickets: http://tktwb.tw/U7Oay4

Los Angeles, CA – November 24
Largo, time TBD

San Diego, CA – November 25
Anthology, time TBD

Salt Lake City – November 27
Venue and time TBD

Denver, CO – November 28
Soiled Dove, time TBD

St. Louis, MO – November 29
Venue and time TBD

Tulsa, OK – November 30
The Shrine, time TBD

Austin, TX – December 1
Venue and time TBD

Dallas, TX – December 2
Granada Theater, 8 PM
Tickets: http://bit.ly/U7YRkb

Nashville, TN – December 4
3rd and Lindsley, time TBD

Atlanta, GA – December 5
Variety Playhouse, time TBD

Charlotte, NC – December 6
Visulite Theater, time TBD

Orlando, FL – December 7
The Beacham, time TBD

Tampa, FL – December 8
State Theater, time TBD

Brooklyn, NY – December 10
Ask Me Another – Season Two!
Bell House, 7:30 PM
Tickets: http://tktwb.tw/U7Oay4

Thank you for reading this long email.

j

UK Tour and Other Things

July 21st, 2012

I’m going to the beach for a couple weeks with the family, but you should know that in September I’m touring in the UK with Paul and Storm. I KNOW! I’m excited to finally be coming back. We’re also trying out Stockholm for the first time, so please tell your Swedish friends. Also I sing Billy Joel in NYC in August. Also there is PAX.

Here’s what’s on the docket:

New York, NY – August 18
Glass Houses: Classic Album Night with the Punk Rock Heavy Metal Karaoke Band
Fontantas, 10 PM
Tickets at the door: $5

Seattle, WA – August 31-September2
PAX
All weekend long, Washington State Convention Center
Info: http://www.paxsite.com

Stockholm, Sweden – September 17
Acoustic, with Paul and Storm
Södra Teatern, 7:30 PM
Tickets: http://bit.ly/O8LL4i

London, UK – September 20
Acoustic, with Paul and Storm
Union Chapel, 7 PM
Tickets: http://bit.ly/NyjO77

Birmingham, UK – September 21
Acoustic, with Paul and Storm
MAC Theater, 7:30 PM
Tickets: http://bit.ly/MF1juq

Bristol, UK – September 22
Acoustic, with Paul and Storm
Colston Hall, 8 PM
Tickets: http://bit.ly/Q2467t

Manchester, UK – September 23
Acoustic, with Paul and Storm
Manchester Academy 2, 7 PM
Tickets: http://bit.ly/OObUEQ

Not as if it’s been crazy busy around here, but expect less talky talk from me until August (can you do NEGATIVE posts per week?). Hopefully I will not be eaten by a shark. We’ll see I guess…

Flattery Will Get You Everywhere

July 17th, 2012

Yesterday I picked up a package that was waiting for me at my post office box. It did not have an address label on it, and it came from JFK via freight. I was intrigued.

Inside the cardboard box was a nailed-shut wooden crate with this on the top:

and this on the side:

Erp.

I waited till the end of the day so my kids could watch me open it, because what kid would not want to open a mysterious package that came from a cemetery? Inside was a layer of moss with a tiny shovel. Beneath the moss was green dirt, and buried in the green dirt was a coffin, along with a headstone and some chains. Like you do:

I confess I was just a TINY bit concerned I was going to find a human hand in there or something. But it was not a human hand. It was this guy:

The scroll explains that he is Eben Hardwick, undead person and movie extra. He’s a silicone zombie with posable limbs from the movie Paranorman, and the kind people at Laika (who also made Coraline) sent him to me. Because, you know, zombies.

I have never received something something so fantastic in the mail in all my life. And I know a little something about special boxes that contain special things (what’s up level 4!), so I can tell you that this particular special box is just plain amazing. I am extremely flattered that they would think to send me such a thing.

Which is why I have no qualms at all about saying that you should all go see Paranorman when it comes out in August, because I’m going to, and not only because I want to see if I can spot my guy. As you will know if you have seen Coraline, these people do great work. Plus they sent me a silicone zombie in a coffin. You should also check out weirdwins.com, where there is a lot of cool behind the scenes stuff from the people who worked on the film.

Eben says hi: