Announcing the Crisis On Intimate Earths Tour

Crisis Cover FB Bar

just a little sneak preview of the cover art by Sketchy McDrawpants.

That’s right, y’all! I’m heading back out on the road next month for my first ever solo tour! I’m gonna be promoting and performing songs from my upcoming EP, Crisis On Intimate Earths as well as telling some of the many stories I’ve accumulated over 3 solid years of touring the US and the UK. I’ll also be performing songs from Malibu Shark Attack and, of course, some old favorites. Here’s the schedule:

August 20 – Kansas City, MO – Elite Comics (info)
August 21 – Omaha, NE – Legend Comics & Coffee (info)
August 22 – Chicago, IL – Brainstorm Comics (info)
August 23 – St. Louis, MO – Starclipper (info)
August 25 – Yellow Springs, OH – Superfly Comics & Games w/ Mikal kHill
August 26 – Canton, OH – Buzzbin Art & Music Shop w/ Mikal kHill & 2D6 (info)
August 27 – Pittsburgh, PA – Pittsburgh Comics (info)
August 29 – Wilmington, DE – TBA
August 30 – Syracuse, NY – Singers Karaoke Bar w/ Mikal kHill, Sammus & Jesse Dangerously

I’m also going have these awesome new Malibu Shark Attack shirts, designed by the homey Joe Huntermsamodel

But wait, there’s more!

Earlier in the month I’m going to be joining my friends Ceschi and Mikal kHill as they tour through Atlanta on August 5th at WonderRoot. I’ll be doing a Malibu Shark Attack live band performance during kHill’s set so start preparing yourselves now. It’s seriously going to rule.

After that radness I’ll be touring with my good friends Mega Ran & K-Murdock and Doug Funnie! Check out the schedule in this awesome banner by Danger BoycoopoositeofwarFB

ALSO!!!

PLEASE NOTE: I’m actually not going to be at Orlando Nerd Fest on the weekend of August 7th – 11th. Instead, I’m going to be at Otakon with my good friend Adam WarRock for a weekend of rap, anime and awesomeness. If you’re going to Nerd Fest have a great time and tell everybody hello for me!

I can’t wait to see you all again!

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My Process – Yo Into New York

photo by Aggie / brandnewkindof.com

Jesse Dangerously and my back on stage together last summer – probably performing this song – at Cat’s Cradle in Carrboro, NC. photo by Aggie / brandnewkindof.com

Well, it’s now been over a week since my last process post, which was also the first. I guess that means it’s time for another one! Since I like the whole going-in-order thing, I’m going to talk about track two of the Malibu Shark Attack album, “Yo Into New York,” which features incredible guest verses byJesse Dangerously and Kevin Steinhauser from Math the Band.

(Somewhat related side note: Math the Band’s latest album, Stupid and Weird, was mixed by MSA’s own Rocky O’Reilly and is a super great record.)

I’ll make the same disclaimer here that I made last time: I am in no way attempting to tell you what you should think or feel about the songs. I’m only going to say what I was thinking and feeling when I wrote them.

This is the song that is essentially responsible for Malibu Shark Attack existing at all. When Rocky first emailed me out of the blue to ask if I wanted to make an album with an odd and exciteable Northern Irish indie rock producer, this is one of the tracks the he sent. As soon as I heard it I knew. I instantly knew that I needed to work with this guy and that it was going to literally change my life.

When the band was performing this song on our UK tour with MC Lars I would introduce it by saying “Rocky wrote this next song about being super hungover in New York; I wrote it about being really good at rap. Let’s go!” And that’s pretty much true. The song’s original title was “Put The Boke In Hoboken;” “boke” meaning “barf,” “puke,” etc. But that was before I had written anything for it or had even heard it, in fact. When Rocky sent it to me the title had already been changed and the singing part, sung by the incredible Angie McCrisken, was already in there too.

Here are the lyrics:

Verse One:
oh snap, this is no act
this is no accident
no low fat atkins stamped on the package
we don’t hold hands and we don’t fold napkins
rap game Frodo Baggins marching into Mordor solo
so old fashioned
so Cro-Magnon practically half Jurassic
massive tyrannosaur swag is classic
I’m a grown man so I don’t throw tantrums
just go ham yelling “YOLO”
don’t go back on our word, no quotes redacted
we mastered the curve, you’re below the average
we crafted and nurtured a chapter and verse
so the pastors in churches will quote this passage
now don’t act so mad just ’cause you don’t have post-grad vocab
dope raps in an accent thick as molasses back since Jackie Onassis, check it
Atlanta to Canada traveling the road map
from Staten to Manhattan we putting the YO back.

Chorus:
“Put the YO into New York!” a bunch of times.

Verse Two:
my whole team is so fresh and so clean
dressed to impress double decker supreme
all of these ladies no less than a queen
on the scene so fetch and so mean
I live my whole life like it’s Friday Night Lights Matt Saracen
with a rap flow that has no comparison
I’m half black half actual alien
galaxy class, yo
Astro-American
haters insist that the way that we live is immature
they get a ticket to take a trip on the Hindenberg
my language and diction are changing the hipsters into nerds
making it Middle Earth in Williamsburg.

Jesse Dangerously’s verse:
ship shape you could drown in the wreckage
we ’bout to burn this motherfucker down in a second
and the sound is impressive when we’re pounding the mechanism
now is the reckoning and I reckon I could wreck this thing
rap game Myra Breckinridge
I’ll switch it up with kitten ears
disappear vicious no visitors
Lister and the Cat
come hither for the blistering attack
I’m a wizard and my staff grants wishes
I’m Alfred doing Batman’s dishes
I’m a fat decathlete
now that’s ambitious
I’m mathnastic backflips on your mattress
that’s Rich and me and Tribe are gonna put the…

Chorus again.

Bridge:
slide cross town to the old sixth ward
we’ll stay out all night
burn the birthday boy (sung twice)

Another chorus.

Third verse by Kevin Steinhauser:
ayo, we’re not about to stop
don’t worry about the clock
and we don’t give a shit about noise complaints go ahead and call the cops
don’t let the energy drop
don’t stop til you reach the top
we’re just throwing it down in the big fucking city just partying with robots

And the chorus again. Fin.

Honestly, there’s not much I can say about the content of the song other than I wanted to rap really good. The main goal was to make the song fun, and since Rocky’s music was already incredibly fun, it was just up to me, Jesse and Kevin to keep it that way.

To go back to what I mentioned before in the first process post, about rhythms and pockets of the beat, it was actually pretty challenging to settle on an approach to the first verse. The second verse was super easy, but I’ll come back to that.

When I originally sent the song to Jesse Dangerously to ask him if he’d write for it, I hadn’t finished a verse for it. I had started a verse but it was suuuuuuuuper terrible and ended up being scrapped and deleted forever from my draft folder. If I remember correctly, I think it had a line about picket fences and sixth senses and was going to be about how I moved around as a kid from California to Arizona to Atlanta and then finally went to New York to visit for the first time. Seriously, though, it was awful.

Luckily, before I could make much headway into that travesty, Jesse sent back a demo for the verse he’d written. It was something like a two days after I sent him the beat. It might even have been the next day. After hearing it I realized what a horrible mistake I had been making and started writing the verse that ended up on the song.

I should back up a little bit and tell you how I got to know Jesse. In the fall of 2012 I went on tour with Adam WarRock, Mikal kHill and, you guessed it, Jesse Dangerously. I had toured with WarRock before as his back up hype guy, but this time I had my own set. The four of us met up in Chicago, kHill and WarRock in one car, me in another and Jesse on an airplane since he was coming from Canada.

Prior to this, kHill was the only one of us who knew Jesse personally. WarRock and I only knew him from a handful email exchanges to organize the tour and the fundraiser album we made to promote and support the tour, called FUN RAZOR. Clever, no?

So I knew he was a really great rapper (seriously, just check out the opening track of FUN RAZOR called “Pauly Shore”), but I knew very little about the man himself.

Jesse Dangerously and I met for the first time when I picked him up from the Chicago airport. I’m usually pretty bad at meeting people; awkwardness and whatnot. But as we drove back to meet the others we had a really great time making fun of terrible billboards and shop names and discussing our shared admiration of another Canadian rapper named Buck 65, who it turned out was a friend of Jesse’s that he’d grown up with.

(Somewhat related side note: I do an impeccable Buck 65 impression. For real.)

This is all set up to say that in Jesse’s verse, the lines “Mathnastic, backflips on your mattress, that’s Rich” are references to that conversation on that day when we first met.

One of the terrible shops that we saw was a place called The Mathnasium, whose name was the source of several laughs; hence, “Mathnastic.” The other part of the line comes from a Buck 65 song called “Wicked and Weird” in which there’s a part of the chorus where he says “wicked and weird, I’m a rat-fish trying to practice doing backflips on your mattress.” Also, his real name is Rich; hence “backflips on your mattress; that’s Rich.”

It was also later on that same tour that “The YOLO Story” happened. If you’ve seen me perform in the last year or so there’s a good chance you’ve heard me tell that story. If not, ask me about it next time you see me. It’s one of my absolute favorites to tell. I bring it up because that’s the reason I say “YOLO” in my verse.

So I guess this song is basically about Jesse and I reminiscing on how awesome that tour was. I seriously did not realize that until just now. Huh.

There was a period around when Rocky and I were finishing up the album that we weren’t sure if Jesse was going to be on it. I mentioned earlier that he wrote and recorded his demo astonishingly fast, but then when it came time to get finals vocals from him it became really uncertain as to whether he’d be able to get them to us in time. As a safety measure, I wrote a second verse just in case Jesse’s didn’t come through. However, almost immediately after I did Jesse got us his part. I really liked what I’d written, though, so I asked Rocky to extend the second verse to fit both of us.

It was all really dramatic and frantic at the time, but I think it turned out for the best. It ended up being a really fun song to make and a super fun song to perform, both with Jesse on the mc chris Revenge of the Nerd tour last summer and with the MSA band in the UK last month.

I know a lot less about Kevin’s involvement since Rocky made that happen. I will say that it’s a fantastic last verse of the song that basically sums up what the song is about: Partying as hard as you possibly can in New York (or wherever you happen to be).

Thanks again for reading! I hope you enjoy the song!

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My Process – Better Off As Friends

we were better off as kitties

we were better off as kitties

I decided just a little bit ago that I wanted to do a series of posts wherein I discuss my writing process for the Malibu Shark Attack album. Being the word nerd that I am, I find it endlessly fascinating when artists talk about the intricacies and details of all the things they put into their work. I’m hoping that some of you might find it at least a fraction as interesting.

I should note that I’m in no way trying to prescribe what listeners should get out of the songs I write about; I am a firm believer in the idea that once art is out there it is effectively out of its creator’s hands and belongs to the people whom it reaches. The way a song makes the listener feel is completely up to that listener, regardless – or in spite of – what the artist was feeling when he or she wrote it. So please, continue to feel the way you feel. I only ask that you feel. If you feel like it.

I guess it makes sense to go in order. “Start at the beginning; and when you get to the end stop” and such.

Track one of the album is called “Better Off As Friends,” and it features Dudley Colley of The Dudley Corporation and additional vocals by Angie McCrisken and Kev Jones, both of whom are absolutely lovely people I met on my recent trip to the UK. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to meet Mr. Colley, though I’m certain he is also lovely.

When Rocky sent me the music for this song it came with a one sentence description of his idea for the song, which basically amounted to “When my old band, Oppenheimer, broke up and I started working on another project all of the band’s fans were pretty upset about it.” This made me curious, since at that point I had no idea how big of a deal Oppenheimer had been. When a quick google search turned up videos of them playing live on the Craig Ferguson show and touring with They Might Be Giants and being on the soundtrack for Gossip Girl and Ugly Betty I started to get a little intimidated. Who the eff was this guy? And why did he think it was a good idea to work with me???

I was definitely starting out at a deficit. So when I started writing the song, I did so with the knowledge that Rocky’s old fans were probably going to hate me just because I wasn’t the other guy in Oppenheimer. And you know what? That’s fair. I get it.

But I wanted them to at least give me a chance to explain myself. Here are my lyrics to the song:

“Man, I hate when my favorite bands go on indefinite hiatus and
later announce a new side project
They may be done, what if I’m not yet?
Now, I know that you think that I might not get what you’re going through
but I totally do
That chip on your shoulder’s a boulder I’m moving
to show and to prove that I know what I’m doing
And I ain’t even aiming to brag when I say I’m amazing at rap
’cause I’m honing my craft every moment I have so it’s only a statement of fact
And, see, Rocky’s still making that post-new wave-prog-electronica-indie core-synth-pop
and he said to put on it whatever I wanted, but all I could think of was hip hop
But I promise that I’ll never lie on a track
Diamonds and gold are not why I’m in rap
I want you to know that I’m trying to act like an honest adult with a spine in my back
If you give it a listen and hate it that’s fine
I’ll be grateful and thank you for trying
I’m honestly sorry I wasted your time
Unless maybe you’re changing your mind…”

The chorus:

“This isn’t rock and roll
This sounds so thrown together
What happened to Oppenheimer?
I like their old stuff better

This isn’t real hip hop
This is some new bold endeavor
What happened to The Remnant?
I like their old stuff better”

And Dudley’s verse:

“I’m so sorry I broke your heart
Never meant to be the one who would tear this apart
And I’m sorry if I let you down.

One without two’s just a mediocre sound
And I’m left here holding this impossible crown
And I’m sorry that you’re stuck with me.”

Usually, when I start writing a song the first thing I do is listen to it. I mean, yeah, obviously. What I’m listening for, specifically, are the ways the music interacts with itself and how I can then interact with it without disrupting it. How are the drums patterned? How does the melody interact with the drums? What is the bass line doing? After getting a feel for that stuff I start to do a scat-type of thing to get an idea of how I can pattern my flow to complement the music and sort of fit into the rhythmic pockets of the song. Then I try to adjust my voice and tone to harmonize with the song’s melodies as best I can. Ideally, I want my verses to be just another instrument layered into the song, not overpowering or dominating it.

Content-wise, I was attempting to address the fans of Oppenheimer and The Remnant (my longtime group) and let them know that, yeah, this record is about to be pretty different than what they’re used to, but if they give it a chance I’m going to try my best to give them something honest, at least.

On just about every level, I think this is one of the best verses I’ve ever written. It was one of those magical, oh-so rare instances of a verse materializing exactly the way I imagined it. The chorus teases just a little bit, but mostly I was just trying to preempt that criticism and turn it into something that worked for us instead of against us.

So, yeah. I’m pretty proud of this one. I think it does a really good job of setting up the album both in how it sounds and what it says. I don’t know enough about music to say more than Rocky is a genius and on this song, as well as every other song, he absolutely rocked it.

I really enjoyed writing this song and I loved performing it. At the official record release party in Belfast last month there were actually people crowd surfing to it. It was unbelievable.

I hope you like the song and I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my thoughts on it. I also hope you enjoy this video for it, starring my good friend Bee Mick See:

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Puddle Jumpin’

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“If this was just another harebrained scheme, why am I flyer than an airplane wing?”

Up there is the view from my window seat on the plane from Atlanta to Philadelphia. I’ve always loved the view from above the clouds; it’s like looking through clear ocean water to the reef below.

While I wait on my connecting flight to London, where I will meet up with my friend MC Lars and my band mate in Malibu Shark Attack, Rocky O’Reilly (for the first time EVER! What!?), I thought it’d be a good idea to post some info about the tour upon which we are embarking.

Malibu Shark Attack is reuniting for the first time ever to join MC Lars on his Zombie Dinosaur headlining tour of the United Kingdom in the cities of Leicester, Glasgow, London, Brighton and Bristol.

After that, we Sharks will be hopping back to Rocky’s hometown, Belfast, on the 23rd to officially celebrate the release of our debut album. Then we’re doing it again in Derry the next day.

I am both lethally excited and joyously terrified of this adventure. But it’s too late to stop it now. I’m at my gate and I hear London Calling.

“All I need is a running start…”

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See With Your Ears, Hear With Your Eyes

aw yeah.

My lovely, amazing and infinitely patient wife recently pointed out to me that I’ve been gone more than I’ve been home since we got married in December. There’s been a lot going on lately, hasn’t there? I just got home from three straight months of touring and I’m leaving tomorrow to go to my little brother’s wedding and then I’m flying into Austin, Texas for my first official showcase at South By Southwest with a bunch of my bestest nerdcore friends like Doc Awk, Jesse Dangerously, Adam WarRock, MC Lars, Schaffer the Darklord, Random, MC Frontalot and more. It’s going to be nuts.

Before I head out again, I’ve got a whole slew of new stuff to share with you. If you’ve been following me on facebook or twitter then you probably already know that I’ve recently become obsessed with Magic: The Gathering again. The last time I played was in 2012 when the Dark Ascension set was released. I was able to break free of the game before too much damage was done, but now… now I fear there’s no going back. I blame Adam WarRock for coming up with the idea of me teaching him how to play so we could have something to do on our tour downtime. I also blame Mikal kHill for already having a bunch of really good decks so that I had to buy more cards to be able to beat him. The good news is that we made a completely 100% free EP about the game and our obsession and did I mention it’s free? It’s free. Check out the song “Friday Night Magic” below!

Another pretty awesome thing that happened was the release of the official music video for The Remnant’s song “Summer Dog Days.” I’m super stoked about how this video came out and it’s all thanks to Mr. Mick Hawkins over at Ash Films for coming up with the video treatment, directing and editing the whole thing. So please check out the video and leave a comment or thumbs up or something. It’s one of my favorite songs on the best album we’ve ever made.

And finally, while we’re on the topic of official music videos, the first official music video for Malibu Shark Attack was released! The song is called “Better Off As Friends” and it’s all about how me and my bandmate, Rocky O’Reilly, both have fans who know us as primarily doing something completely different and would just rather hear more of the old stuff. The video features the emotive talent of Irish rapper Bee Mick See and holy smokes, does he emote. The song also features one of the best rap verses I’ve ever written in my whole life. I’m so proud of the song and I hope you all like the video!

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Snowpocalypse 2014!

you ain't goin' NOWHERE.

you ain’t goin’ NOWHERE.

It snowed in Atlanta today and this is what traffic looked like this afternoon. I sure am glad I spent all day at home writing rap songs for a secret project you’ll be hearing about VERY soon. Oh, and while I’m at it I might as well mention that Adam WarRock are heading back out on tour in about a week. This time we’re running up and down the East Coast. Check it!

TRIBE ONE & ADAM WARROCK TOUR OF COMIC STORES PART TWO
Feb. 5 – Charleston, SC – Captain’s Comics (info)
Feb. 6 – Wilmington, DE – The Comic Book Shop w/ Greg Pak (info)
Feb. 7 - Somerville, MA – Comicazi (info)
Feb. 8 – Baltimore, MD – Collector’s Corner (info)
Feb. 9 – NYC – The Fifth Estate w/ Schaffer, Mikal kHill, & Louis Logic (info)
Feb. 10 – Syracuse, NY – Singers Karaoke Club w/ Sammus (info)
Feb. 11 - Manchester, NH – Double Midnight Comics (info)
Feb. 12 – Portland, ME – Geno’s Rock Club & Coast City Comics (info)
Feb. 13 – Northampton, MA – Modern Myths (info)
Feb. 15 – Richmond, VA – Velocity Comics (info)
Feb. 16 – Charlotte, NC – The Milestone w/ Mikal kHill (info)

After the amazing West Coast run that we had with Schaffer the Darklord I’m super stoked to get back out on the road and on stage again. And bonus! We’re playing with Schaffer in Brooklyn on Feb. 9th along with Mikal kHill and Louis Logic! There’s going to be a LOT of awesome guest rockers on this tour. We’re even playing a show with Superman/Batman writer Greg Pak. And then we’re wrapping up on the 16th with a show at The Milestone in Charlotte for the NOFRIENDS Family Reunion with Mikal kHill, Kristy Bee and more. S’gonna be rad.

See you out there!

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My Obligatory Top Ten List for 2013

I wanted to get this out while were still close enough to 2013 to remember it and before I head back out on tour again with Schaffer the Darklord and Adam WarRock. Here are some of my highlights and favorites from the year that was. In no particular order or category, here is the official Tribe One Top Ten(ish) List of 2013:

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1. Favorite Comics That Were Published in 2013: Saga, The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, Hawkeye, Daredevil, Prophet, Sin Titulo

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2. Favorite Comics I Read in 2013 That were Published Sometime Before: Superman – Secret Identity, Elephantmen vol 1, Drops of God, Hellboy, BPRD, that 90s Captain America story where he turns into a werewolf.

etrian-odyssey-iv

3. Favorite Video Games of 2013: Etrian Odyssey IV (3ds), Fire Emblem Awakening (3ds), Hotline Miami (Vita), Guacamelee (Vita), Spelunky (Vita), Animal Crossing New Leaf (3ds), Dragon’s Crown (Vita), Stealth Inc. A Clone in the Dark (Vita), Steam World Dig (3ds), Muramasa Rebirth (Vita), Bioshock Infinite (ps3), Gone Home (pc), The Legend of Zelda A Link Between Worlds (3ds)

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4. Favorite Video Games I Played in 2013 That Came Out Sometime Before: XCOM Enemy Unknown (ps3), Persona 4 Golden (Vita), Catherine (ps3), FTL (pc), Darksiders (ps3), Valkyria Chronicles (ps3), Knytt Underground (Vita), Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask (3ds), Virtue’s Last Reward (3ds)

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5. Favorite Table Top Games I Played in 2013: Magic the Gathering 2013 Core set and Theros, Forbidden Desert, Super Dungeon Explore, Munchkin

OHM

6. Favorite Non-Comic Books I Read In 2013: The Disaster Artist, A Feast For Crows

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7. Favorite Podcasts of 2013: Welcome to Night Vale, Tinycartridge Tinycast, Retronauts, How Did This Get Made?, Shots Fired, Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History, Earth’s Mightiest Podcast, Interactive Distractions, Seattle Geekly, Screaming Brain Comics

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8. Favorite Albums That Came Out in 2013: Vampire Weekend – Modern Vampires of the City, Anamanaguchi – Endless Fantasy, Schaffer the Darklord – Sick Passenger, Saturday Looks Good To Me – One Kiss Ends It All, Camp Lo & Pete Rock – 80 Blocks From Tiffany’s vol 2, Adam WarRock – Middle of Nowhere, He’s My Brother She’s My Sister – Nobody Dances In This Town, Louis Logic – Look On The Blight Side, Natti – Still Motion, Run The Jewels, Shad – Flying Colours, The Uncluded – Hokey Fright

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9. Favorite Albums That I Couldn’t Stop Listening to in 2013 Even Though They Came Out Sometime Before: Mighty Clouds, Paul Simon – Graceland, POS – We Don’t Even Live Here, Kno – Death is Silent, Eponym & Esta – Autumn In Sound, Sene – Pavement Special, Spoken Nerd – Our Team Is Going To Win

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10. Favorite Movies of 2013: Fast & Furious 6, World’s End, The Wolverine, Oblivion, The Hobbit – The Desolation of Smaug

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11. Favorite People I Toured With or Played a Show With in 2013: mc chris, Jesse Dangerously, Dr. Awkward, Adam WarRock, Mikal kHill, Sulfur, The Nerdlucks, Louis Logic, Ceschi, cecilnick, MC Stealth, MC Lars, Dual Core, Schaffer the Darklord, MC Frontalot, Random & K-Murdock, Professor Shyguy, D&D Sluggers, Wordburglar, More or Les, Red Jesse, Turquoise Jeep, Tonezee, Zinc Platypus, Sweatermeat, 2d6, Super Art Fight, Math the Band and anybody else I forgot!

the old ball and chain.

12. Most Incredible Life Changing Events of 2013 (in chronological order): went to SXSW in Austin, got invited to open for mc chris’ summer tour, quit my job as a librarian, wrote and recorded the Malibu Shark Attack album, WENT ON FRIGGIN’ TOUR FOR 2 MONTHS STRAIGHT, went on tour again a couple times, got married to my amazing girlfriend of 7 1/2 years

Thank you all for sharing this amazing year with me and I hope you stick with me for 2014! See you on the road!

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The Cat and the Bag That Could No Longer Contain It

January 2014!!!

January 2014!!!

I hope everybody is currently having a wonderful holiday season! There’s been a metric buttload of things happening in my life all in a ridiculously short amount of time and I want to share the news with you!

I can keep it a secret no longer! Starting on January 9th I will be touring the West Coast with Adam WarRock and Schaffer the Darklord. It’s pretty rare that any of us get to make it out to the West Coast, but all three of us on the same bill? And with all-star quality local support from folks like Dual Core, Mega Ran, Death*Star, Doctor Awkward, Beefy and more?!?!?! Yeah. You’re gonna want to be there when we come to your city. Here’s the schedule:

Jan 9 – Seattle, WA – The Lo-Fi w/ Beefy & Death Star (info)
Jan 10 – Portland, OR – The Analog w/ Kid Apocalypse (inf0)
Jan 11 – Boise, ID – The Spacebar Arcade (info)
Jan 12 – Salt Lake City, UT – Shred Shed w/ Mark Dago (inf0)
Jan 14 – Phoenix, AZ – Pub Rock w/ Mega Ran (info)
Jan 15 – San Diego, CA – The Merrow w/ Doc Awk (info)
Jan 16 – Las Vegas, NV – Bar 702 w/ 3D6 – FREE (info)
Jan 17 – Los Angeles, CA – Complex LA (info)
Jan 18 – San Francisco, CA – Hemlock Tavern w/ Dual Core (info)
Jan 19 – Mt. Shasta, CA – Mt. Shasta Vets Club – FREE (info)

I’m also super excited to announce that I’ll be officially performing this March at South By Southwest this year as part of the Nerdcore Showcase! I was lucky enough to attend last year as hype-man to my good friend Mikal kHill (who just put out a new record, btw!) and it turned out to be one of my favorite events I’ve ever been to. Side note: last year at SXSW I ended up on stage to do songs with something like half of the showcasing artists, which got me noticed by MC Frontalot who then recommended me to mc chris for his tour. So, SXSW is literally responsible for one of the biggest opportunities of my life, which means I’ve got a lot of feelings about the event. And you all know how I feel about feelings.

Ok, so now let’s talk about some amazing things that just recently transpired. About a week ago I got home from touring the Midwest with Adam WarRock. We had an incredible time playing shows in comic shops and doing more laid back, storyteller sets. We met some super amazing people (including Marvel’s Jason Aaron, who I told about my undying love of Knuckles O’Shaugnessy from his Ghost Rider run) and played Magic the Gathering every night. It was AWESOME.

A really great dude in Louisville that I met this summer made this for me and brought it to the show.

A really great dude in Louisville that I met this summer made this painting for me and brought it to the show.

When the tour ended I promptly came home to my girlfriend of 7 and a half years and got married. We had a super tiny elopement ceremony two days before Christmas in front of our parents and siblings and then ate a baller lunch at the Horseradish Grill in Atlanta. SWAG.

the old ball and chain.

the old ball and chain.

I must say, I look good in a tux. Happy new year, y’all!

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MTG: Friendship is Magic

It is SO cold in the Midwest, you guys. The only warmth Adam WarRock and I have found is in the heated conflict of Magic the Gathering. He’d never played before so we picked up a couple of starter decks and threw down. His blue/red Manipulative Monstrosities deck could not withstand my white/black Favors of Nyx deck and in a dramatic, tension-filled best of seven tournament (yeah, we played seven times in a row) I won four times. We left the Best Western in Omaha a smoldering crater.

Two nights ago we rocked, and were rocked by Elite Comics in Kansas City. We got to meet Jason Aaron and tell him all about my undying love of Knuckles O’Shaugnessy. We met Dennis Hopeless and talked about the bottomless pit of 60’s Disney live action movies like Darby O’Gill and the Little People and The Gnome-Mobile. We met Jai Nitz and talked about the utter despair involved in loving a professional football team.

Tonight we’re rocking Legend Comics and Coffee in Omaha. Here’s the full schedule:

Dec 4 – Kansas City, MO – Elite Comics (info
Dec 6 
- Omaha, NE – Legend Comics & Coffee (info)
Dec 7
 – St. Louis, MO – Star Clipper (info)
Dec 9 - Minneapolis, MN – Highlander Games & Comics (info)
Dec 11 
- Bloomington, IN – Vintage Phoenix Comics (info)
Dec 12 
- Milwaukee, WI – Lost World of Wonders (info)
Dec 13 
- Chicago, IL – Brainstorm Comics (info
Dec 14 
- Columbus, OH – Packrat Comics (info
Dec 15 
- Dearborn, MI – Green Brain Comics (info)
Dec 16
 – Dayton, OH – Super-Fly Comics (info)
Dec 17 - Cleveland, OH – Now That’s Class (info
Dec 18 
- Pittsburgh, PA – Pittsburgh Comics (info)
Dec 19 – Louisville, KY – Haymarket Whiskey Bar (info)

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It’s Been Raining All Day in Atlanta…

What better way to spend a rainy afternoon than with a few of your favorite comics?

In a little over a week I’m going to be hitting the road again with my friend and yours, Adam WarRock, for the inaugural campaign of our nation-wide Tour of Comic Stores. We’ll be heading to the Midwest this time around. Check the schedule:

Dec 4 – Kansas City, MO – Elite Comics (info
Dec 6 
- Omaha, NE – Legend Comics & Coffee (info)
Dec 7
 – St. Louis, MO – Star Clipper (info)
Dec 9 - Minneapolis, MN – Highlander Games & Comics (info)
Dec 11 
- Bloomington, IN – Vintage Phoenix Comics (info)
Dec 12 
- Milwaukee, WI – Lost World of Wonders (info)
Dec 13 
- Chicago, IL – Brainstorm Comics (info
Dec 14 
- Columbus, OH – Packrat Comics (info
Dec 15 
- Dearborn, MI – Green Brain Comics (info)
Dec 16
 – Dayton, OH – Super-Fly Comics (info)
Dec 17 - Cleveland, OH – Now That’s Class (info
Dec 18 
- Pittsburgh, PA – Pittsburgh Comics (info)
Dec 19 – Louisville, KY – Haymarket Whiskey Bar (info)

This initial run is merely the beginning of what is emerging as a disturbing trend in how I will be spending my time in upcoming months. I just did a tally of all the traveling and touring in my immediate future and from now thru February I have over 30 shows. Don’t take my word for it, though. See the whole list here.

I’m also working on a new EP of songs about comics, love, touring, etc. It’s something to keep me busy until Malibu Shark Attack officially releases in January/February (don’t forget you can get our single “Doing it Wrong” right here right now!!!). It’s going to be called “Crisis on Intimate Earths” and I’ll be doing new songs from it on the road so when I’m in your town come out and let me know what you think of the new stuff.

And finally, because I’m still incredibly proud of it, I’m going to plug the album I made with The Remnant, Indian Summer. You can buy it literally everywhere music is sold online and listen for free on bandcamp:

That’s all, my lovelies! See you soon!

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