Second Life Report

ByJoCo September 15, 2006

Well, I managed to get through my entire set without either of my computers crashing, which I consider to be a huge success. The venue was so crowded that it was difficult to move around – too much rendering going on. Not to mention, Second Life had rolled out a software update on Wednesday, and were doing some server maintenance during the show. So right in the middle of someone’s set they rebooted the server we were on, and we all got kicked out of the concert. When I logged back in I was transported to some random place where I was attacked by jumping, chattering wooden boxes. Turns out it was griefers. Griefers, man! A legitimate griefer attack. I was quite pleased. Then this message popped up from support (I’m not joking):

After all that, my part of the show went off quite well. It was a great deal of fun, and it hurt my brain (in a good way). There are already quite a few photos up on flickr, and elsewhere I’m sure. Thanks to Zenigma, Adri, Haver and all the people who helped get me ready, thanks to and, and thanks to all the real Second Life musicians who have been pushing the envelope since before my avatar was even in diapers. Onward!


Mike says

I heard a rumor that there would be movies available from the concert. Is this true? If so, where can I find such goodies? Thanks!

Chris Radcliff says

Yes, I'd also love to see video of the concert.

Re: your griefers, that's quite a thing to have happen. I think you've officially become a character from a 1990s cyberpunk novel. The next step is to move into a U-Stor-It with a family of Hmong immigrants and furnish it with packing crates and electronics.

Russ Matthews says

Yeah, I'd love to see movies from the concert. I blogged it, was going to attend, but got held up at work. 5p pacific is kinda tough to do when you live on the west coast and work until 5p - especially when your nazi corporate employer has a firewall keeping you out of SL (can't imagine why! lol).

Spiff says

I managed to record audio for JC's whole set and am in the process of breaking it into song-sized chunks in Garage Band. If the resulting .mp3s aren't too enormous, I'll post them up for people to turn into their own "Jonathan Coulton Unplugged" CDs. :)

Mike says

woOt! Thanks Spiff!

DGD says

I got barred from the venue and ended up in a really bad disco, where I was greeted by the fanfare from, kid you not, "The Final Countdown." Spent the rest of the evening flying in and getting booted out of Menorca. Is there any chance of a solo performance in the future? A smaller audience might fix the rezzing and streaming problems. Besides, how many of us prefer our JoCo w/o side orders of girlyfolk and new age--sorry, melodic darkwave ambient?

Zenigma Suntzu says

This is the main info page for the concert:

I've got recordings of all 6 musicians, and need to check them. If you post some, add a link to the wiki page, or let me know the URL and I'll do it.

Share your pictures, recording and machinima as detailed here:

Recordings and machinima should be licensed with the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 License.

AiYume says

I have some video recorded. However, due to crowding and rendering problems, JC's guitar is mostly between grey and black planes, making it look like a box most of the time. That and the fact he couldn't move or activate his guitar script makes for a pretty static show... I'm going to see what I've got for footage and see if I can at least cobble something together for a one-song video.

Spiff says

That's what made it seem so authentic -- after 45 minutes of warm-up bands, you're getting really bored and anxious for the headliner to start, just like in real life! ;)

Aspera says

Re: your griefers

Everybody mumble along now!

AAAAAAll Weeeee waanaaaa do is eeeeat yeeeer greifers.
We aren't unreasonable! They're asking for it!

Hmmm... Maybe we should eat their eyes... You can't code a chattering(or kissing) homiing self-replicating attack pine box if you can't see the syntax error that keeps the program from compiling. }}:D

Anyway, I tried to invite everyone I saw into a Jonathan Coulton fans group so if he does want to perform for a smaller audience of his most rabid, money giving-to-him, fan-art-and-video making fans the'll be able to get to us all with a simple roup notice. If you are in second life, the group is open enrollment, it's named "Jonathan Coulton Fans", but the default title is "JoCo Bonobo". You have to demonstrate you devotion to work your way up to monkey. }}:D

I wonder if you noticed how popular you are with us Furries. Still I didn't see any Furry old lobsters.

Kerrin says

I was hoping to record the show to put on the JoCo Project, but I could get the audio to record, and as pointed out previously, there wasn't a great deal of visual content anyway.

One thing the second life concert did have going for it was the chat while JoCo was performing, this made for a unique and enjoyable experience. I'm sure I even heard Jonathan laugh halfway through a song at one comment. How he could play guitar, sing AND read chat all at once I don't know!

Anemone Turk says


I cannot believe I missed this.


I'm gonna go pout ...

Anemone Turk (SL name)

TheRadford says

The nerditude described herein is of such a high degree that I can't even begin to understand what the fuck any of you are talking about, and it's totally awesome that JC is on the cutting edge of it. Whatever it is. Ride, captain, ride!

Sagheer says

(has lurked the webpage for a month or two, never posted before)

I watched most of the concert last night (waaay) in the back, but unfortunately SL was too buggy for me to get to see the Jonathan Coulton part of it. (colour me depressed)

Listening to the broadcast was interesting, but I'm disappointed that I missed out on zombies trying to eat my favourite artist.

Spiff says

I sent JC an email about this, so hopefully he'll give it its own blog post, but I've posted the audio from the concert, chopped up into song-sized .mp3s here:

I have no idea what millions of Coulton fans all coming to my server at once to download the files will do to it, so let's just see what happens. :)

Spiff says

For some reason, my last post about the location of the Second Life concert .mp3s says "Your comment is awaiting moderation". Maybe because I put a hyperlink in the comment? Anyway, here's the location without a hyperlink, to try to fool the blog:

matt says

Thankies Spiff!!!


Gle3nn says

This is great. I am forever grateful Spiff!! Oh, and to you too JoCo.

Mirage Laviolette says

I stumbled here from Tycho's comment over at Penny Arcade and got hooked. Particular favorites: Code Monkey, Mandelbrot Set, Flickr!

My MP3 player categorizes Jon Coulton as "folk" which I guess makes a certain amount of sense. Sort of modern folk, I guess. I dunno. Mostly it's just hilarious and catchy!

In any event, I quite literally fell out of my chair when I found out about the SL concert. I was astounded that this artist I had just run into was in SL. So I tried to go to the concert, and it was the SL equivalent of sold out (Menorca was full). Tried for about an hour but couldn't get in. A shame, but oh well.

Gotta hit up Flickr for those pics then! As for being a hit with the furs, well, SL is probably the furry nexus of the universe, so yeah!

WTG, JoCo! ^~

The Doifter says

Is it just me, or are those mp3s slowed down slightly? They seem a little low and slow, or is that how it was in the concert? JC is verging on Barry White territory in some of those songs, and that's just disconcerting.

Zenigma Suntzu says

Spiff, I'm having trouble playing those samples... they sound pitch shifted a good bit lower (and slower) than normal in Mac Quicktime.

Anyone else having trouble?

I'm going to post the audio of the entire concert this week when I work out hosting... Spiff, if it's your original file, let me know and you can use my capture.

I'm at gmail and it's zenigma. :) Or IM me in SL.

Zenigma Suntzu says

Yes, for me it's about 1/2 step lower than it should be.

Spiff says

They sound like what I heard during the concert to me, but all I was using was Audio Hijack, so I'm sure your recording is better. And all I did was use Garage Band to break the full .aiff file into tracks and then output them to iTunes to make .mp3s. If you've got the hi-fidelity goods Zenigma, I want to hear them too! :)

Zenigma Suntzu says

Spiff, drop me an email and I'll send you the URL.

Spiff says

I got Zenigma's files. Zenigma figured out that Audio Hijack must have recorded at a sampling rate of 48000 but Garage Band thought they were 44100, so the final output ended up sounding a tad lethargic. My files don't sound bad to me, but listening to Zenigma's I can definitely hear the difference. So I'll take another stab at turning out hi-fi .mp3s for everyone's listening enjoyment. Stay tuned.

Russ Matthews says

Spiff, man... you rock!!! Thank you! :)

Len says

Very cool Spiff. Excellent job.

Mauro says

Well. while we get some high-quality stuff from spiff, you can check my own take at recording the concert with 2 samples I posted on my blog.. the whole thing is in spanish (I know) and I had some connection issues messing with the sound (crappy connecion from an underdeveloped south-american country, but heck, this is where I live) but the speed is fine and the result is not that bad.

Just check for the links to Code Monkey and The Future Soon.

Spiff says


I chopped up the audio provided by Zenigma and posted it to that same Web page, so you can find the hi-fi sounds at:

The new stuff sounds markedly better, although I'm also the guy who told you that the first set of files sounded good, so what do I know? ;)

Len says

That's awesome, Spiff. Just listened to it all this morning and it sounds -- spiffy!

One thing that would have been cool (maybe sometime down the road) is putting in some audience reaction to the end of the songs. Now that would make it sound like an actual concert!

Spiff says

I actually turned down the ambient sound so that I only got the unadulterated Coulton magic on my recording (and Zenigma's only had the songs too). There were spatterings of weak /clapping every now and then and I figured it would just screw up the audio. But maybe you're talking about adding stadium special effects and the sound of thousands of people roaring their approval after each song? Hmmmm, maybe if I get bored with videos I can transition into audio remixing.... :)

Spiff says

Too bad there was no audio of all those people typing "Freebird!". That would have been great to pepper throughout the recordings. ;)

Adri Saarinen says

Unfortunately, we had to turn off scripts to keep the griefing down (griefers, man, griefers!) and so the great audience sounds were mostly disabled. There is a great soundbite of someone shouting 'Freebird!' and also some good applause sounds. You hear those at most SL shows.

Zenigma Suntzu says

Check out PopSci Rocks Second Life with full concert AAC recordings and a mirror of Spiff's split MP3 files. Many thanks Spiff!

And pictures of yours truly as a menacing zombie, along with a fun photo set of the concert.

Patrick says

Whatever it is, may it serve as a lasting tribute to this now-deleted ridiculous wikipedia entry (which is still available here).