Guess what I did last night. No, you’re WAY off! (And let’s watch the language.)
Patty and I attended the world premiere of “Finding Home” at the Twin Cities Film Fest. “Finding Home” is a character-driven independent film about the challenges faced by a young couple while on a camping trip. As I have mentioned previously, it’s a wonderful film, and I am proud to have composed and recorded the soundtrack.
Patty and I have never been to a World Premiere and it was an awesome experience to be interviewed on the red carpet. The best part for me was experiencing the film with an appreciative audience and chatting with some nice people at the event.
I don’t typically get political, and this post is no different, but apparently, Texas Governor, Rick Perry (pictured) gave what some have described as a “bizarre” speech while campaigning for the Republican Presidential Nomination in New Hampshire.
(OK, that sentence was WAY too long.)
Here’s a clip:
Of course, there is nothing funny about someone who potentially has a chemical addiction, but that doesn’t mean we can’t laugh at the bone in his hair.
By the way I love that Simpsons clip. I believe they were parodying this:
Hey, someone has to teach the kids about Ed McMahon.
Ever since I was a little boy growing up in the brown-tinted era known as the 1970s, one of my guilty pleasures has been scary movies. I clearly remember sitting in front of our (color!) TV in the shag carpeted, wood paneled family room watching a show featuring clips from all sorts old classic scary movies, including Psycho, Halloween and The Omen. Obviously, I HAD to see these movies.
You thought I was kidding about the Family Room?
I’ve written about this before, but excellent blogs including Final Girl and Kindertrauma have helped to bring back some great memories…memories of watching TV; kinda sad now that I think about it.
I also remember seeing the commercial for 1979′s Phantasm. I didn’t see the film until years later, but just watching the trailer freaked me out. (What’s that flying silver ball with the spikes? Who’s the creepy old tall dude?? Holy crap, that kid is supposed to be safe in bed, but these jawa-looking things start attacking him!!) OK, it looks kinda tame now, but hey, I was 8!
(Man, film trailers back then mentioned the film title A LOT)
Since it’s almost Halloween, I put together a piece of music reminiscent of the scary film music at the time. Specifically, I was thinking of the minimal scores John Carpenter wrote for most of his own movies. A lot of the films were done on a tight budget, so the themes often used synthesizers rather than full orchestras. I don’t currently have a full orchestra hanging around my studio, so please enjoy the synthy goodness!
When I’m not busy staring at my 8-month daughter, I can usually be found recording music for films, commercials, and the occasional video game (although not occasional enough, mind you.) I was recently hired to score a short film for my friend, Chars Bonin over at OrangeApple Productions. Chars has been a filmmaker for over twenty years and in preparation for an upcoming event, he asked if I could record a score for one of his earliest films from 1993. Since I’m a sucker for early 1990s cinema, I quickly agreed.
This is a silent 8mm film called “Indiana Corey,” and it is just over 4 minutes long. As you may guess, it is an homage to “Raiders of the Lost Ark.” As a result, it was pretty obvious to me that the score needed to have a fun, swashbuckling feel to mirror the action on the screen. I like the way it turned out and I hope you enjoy it too. Be sure to stick around for the music over the end credits, because I seriously slapped that together in about 30 minutes. Enjoy!
I normally don’t link to awesome film trailers, but when the awesome trailer looks awesomely awesome, I put down my thesaurus and pay some attention.
Pictured: Awesome ca.1996
The new movie, Cowboys and Aliens comes out in Summer 2011. It stars Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford. Normally, I wouldn’t mention a non-Star Trek-related movie so early; however, as soon as Patty realized she can see a movie starring James Bond, Han Solo/Indiana Jones and a whole bunch of horses, she firmly declared that she WILL be seeing this movie.
Things are really hopping around our house lately as we prepare for Baby Schuette (pretty sure we’ll come up with a better name.) The reality of eventual parenthood is setting in and I couldn’t be happier. I know, I know; it’s going to hit me like a ton of Legos, but I’m still getting ready. I even have my diaper bag. After careful research, I chose the brown diaper bag from Diaperdude.com (Oh, for the love of God, make sure you type that address correctly!) It’s a comfortable, over-the-shoulder design and there’s even a pocket for my cell phone right on the strap! Oh, and it also holds baby-related stuff better than any other bag I looked at.
Patty has also given me permission to tell you that she is starting to show. In other words, if you were making a movie, and you needed to cast “Bubbly Pregnant Lady #1,” Patty is the one you would call. Of course, she’s not in the Screen Actors Guild, and she can’t really fly to L.A. right now, so we’d have work around that. I might be over-thinking this entire paragraph. My point is, Patty looks great…even when she doesn’t think so.
We’ve also tragically magically transformed my super secret 70′s/80′s lair into a slightly less-super secret baby room. My Mannequin movie poster has replaced by pictures of Teddy Bears, my copies of Dynamite Magazine have been supplanted by Dr. Seuss, and my Atari 2600 has been replaced by nothing…just, nothing, not even a freakin’ Playstation. The room has never looked better, though; even without the inspirational picture of Dolph Sweet.
Patty & I will be also be joining a new church very soon. And by “new church,” I mean, “church.” We’re not currently members of a particular church yet. To be honest, I learned most of what I know about religion from watching George Burns movies. According to Hollywood, God smokes cigars, has bad writers, and was a lot funnier in the 1940s. Seriously though, I know our family will benefit from it, and that’s good enough for me. Who knows, maybe they need a rockin’ church organist. I assume I could do that.
We’re also working on getting a new car to replace the aging Jeep Grand Cherokee. It’s becoming increasingly unreliable, and I’m fairly certain the transmission is being held together with duct tape and Gummi-Bears. It’s been a good vehicle, though. That Jeep got me home safely from every gig, every time. Since we have another mini-SUV to haul around the impending torrent of child-related accoutrements, we are going to replace the Jeep with a smaller sedan. Also, I’m not domestic enough, and I strongly believe a Ford Taurus can fix that. Perhaps beige? You kids love beige.
I’ll continue to let you know how the preparations are going. I’m pretty sure it’ll be uneventful.
I love the month of October, mainly because I love Halloween and the accompanying sugar rush. I was thinking about some of the scariest movies I saw as a kid. Since I was born in 1970, most of these movies are from roughly 1975-1980. This begs the obvious question: where were my parents when I was watching these?? If my memory is accurate, I’m pretty sure Mom and Dad were out disco dancing with Antonio Fargas and Shelly Hack. Admittedly, I saw some of these films several years after they were released, but you get the idea.
The following ten films are listed in no particular order and I’ve avoided spoilers. Of course, I posess only a vague awareness of what a “spoiler” is, so this oughtta be good.
10. The Sentinel (1977): A young fashion model (hey, it was the 1970s) learns that her New York City apartment building is harboring a terrible non-plumbing-related secret. Hilarity ensues, of course.
9. Burnt Offerings (1976): Oh Man. This is probably the scariest haunted house movie I have ever seen. Perfectly cast with the über-creepy Karen Black and an equally frightening Oliver Reed (his character wasn’t scary; I’m just very frightened of Oliver Reed.) Oh, and don’t forget that grinning evil chauffeur. And get this, Bette Davis is in this movie! THE Bette Davis! This is a great movie to watch with the lights off and it has held up surprisingly well.
8. The Changeling (1980): This film starred George C. Scott, but surprisingly was NOT a comedy! I don’t remember much about the plot, but I recall a scary old-timey wheelchair and a creepy kid. That’s good enough for me.
7. The Shining (1980): I know everyone cites this movie with Jack Nicholson playing the role of axe aficionado, Jack Torrance, but I first became aware of this movie via the film trailer while sitting in a darkened theater. You know, the simple shot of the elevator doors with the eerie music. All of a sudden a literal torrent of blood comes pouring from the elevators and toward the camera. Pretty freaky, especially for a little kid. Wait a minute, “torrent of blood”…”Jack Torrance.” Hey, that’s weird.
6. Suspiria (1977): OK, I actually saw this film several years after it was released, but seriously, there is absolutely no reason that a kid should watch this movie. It is a brutal, moody, suspenseful and incredibly disturbing film about a coven of witches who run a ballet school in Germany. Known for it’s use of very bright colors (yes, they used a LOT of red,) but if you ask me, the striking soundtrack by Goblin totally made the film. Oh, and the US trailer for this film is incredibly lame, but here you go.
5. The Spell (1977): I didn’t actually see this made-for-TV movie which aired on ABC in its entirety. It is probably best remembered for starring a very young Helen Hunt. Apparently, she’s an actress, or something. Oh, and Lee Grant was in it! You kids loves the Lee Grant! The one scene I remember seeing was with this woman walking down the stairs when all of a sudden she starts shaking, her eyes start bulging and smoke comes out of her ears. Yeah, I didn’t sleep for two weeks after seeing this. I don’t have a clip, but special thanks to Kindertrauma.com for the freaky pic.
4. Phantasm (1979): This is the one with the spooky undertaker known only as “The Tall Man,” who was played very effectively by Angus Scrimm. It also had these deadly flying silver balls. There were also scary little jawa-looking guys who would just as soon kill you as sell you an R2 unit with a bad motivator. The plot of the movie didn’t make any sense to me, but that didn’t matter. I actually saw this film recently, but it wasn’t nearly as scary as I remembered.
3. Race With The Devil (1975): In hindsight, not all that scary, but it spooked me back in the day. This film is about two couples in a large RV who stumble upon a Satanic ritual and wind up being chased across the Southwestern US by the cultists. Geez, what was with all of the Satanic cult movies back then?
2. Tourist Trap (1979): At the time, this movie was overshadowed by films like Halloween and Friday the 13th. But is you ask me this film is scarier for one simple reason: creepy mannequins. Oh and the movie also features (gasp!) Chuck Connors! Chhhuuuuccckkk Connnnneeeeerrrrs! (Sorry, that sounded scarier in my head.)
1. Friday The 13th: This is the original slasher flick…as long as you don’t count all the ones that came before it. OK, maybe it wasn’t that original, but it was still the prototypical scary movie to us pasty suburban kids for years. Well, to those of us who used words like “prototypical” anyway.
How about you guys? No matter when you were born; what were the earliest scary movies you all remember? Anyone?
Now that the election is over, I’ve been able to get around to more important things, like dreading the onslaught of another Minnesota winter. We’ve already had our first snowfall and I’m starting to feel like Minnesota isn’t the paradise I thought it was. At least I have more time to follow that exciting William Shatner/George Takei feud. ‘Cause with all of the challenges facing our country at this time, the juvenile bickering of two washed-up and slightly creepy old guys is more important than ever.
I recorded this piece a while back, but I somehow forgot to post it. It’s called FatCatWalk and it runs 0:51m. It’s my attempt at cartoonish incidental music; the kind of background music you hear in a show while someone is sneaking around. Share the warmth.
Yeah, so I dialed the wrong number yesterday and left a voicemail for someone. Not deliberately, mind you. I didn’t know it was the wrong number until I received a voicemail from the woman I had mis-dialed, informing me that I dialed the wrong number. Normally, I would think it was very thoughtful of this woman (I’ll call her “Gertie”) to let me know I had mis-dialed; however, she seemed rather snippy about it. She sounded like an older woman, and somewhat cranky. In short, she sounded like a character from Mama’s Family, but not as eloquent and well-spoken.
In the voicemail, she stated that I dialed the wrong number and that I should be more careful when dialing the telephone. Um, I couldn’t agree more.
About an hour later I received another call from Gertie. I let it go to voicemail, because dammit, I’m busy. Her voicemail stated that she was calling again to tell me that I dialed the wrong number and that I NEED to be careful when using the telephone machine. This fact was becoming more obvious to me.
Two more hours went by and Gertie called me yet again. This time I answered the phone:
Me: Internal Revenue Service
Gertie:(oblivious, dang) I received a call from this number but you dialed the wrong number and I want to know why.
(Her voice seemed more shrill than her voicemails let on.)
Me: Yes, Ma’am. Thank you for letting me know. I’m sorry to have bothered you.
(Apparently, my snide, dismissive attitude comes through even when I’m being polite.)
Gertie: Are you being a smart-ass?
Me: Not yet, Ma’am.
Gertie: Well, you need to be more careful when using the telephone. I don’t know why you can’t understand that.
Me: Ma’am, what YOU don’t know could fill a warehouse. (God, I love that line.)
Me: I said, “I’m sorry I mis-dialed your house.” Good-bye.
Gertie: I don’t like your atti-
I hung up. Haven’t heard back from her, but just to be safe, I’m gonna stay outta Compton for awhile.
It takes a lot to shock me these days. With everything that goes on in the world, and how quickly we hear about it, I am rarely surprised by anything. Unfortunately, I was shocked yesterday morning when I went to CNN.com and saw that George Carlin had died. It still seems weird.
I first saw George Carlin on “The Tonight Show” in the early 80′s. He was doing his bit about “a place for my stuff.” I had never seen anyone so manic and funny at the same time. Like most people, I immediately became a fan. The main thing I liked about George Carlin was his authenticity. He was never phoney and he was never “cute.” I’m sure gonna miss that.
Here is a clip of George Carlin on “The Tonight Show” in 1972. Nobody could interview like Johnny Carson.