Tags: alaska, album, anchorage, avocado song, bandcamp, buy album, cd, from alaska, marian-call, Music, musician, new album, order, pre-order, singer, singer-songwriter, something fierce
**Update: the autographed CD’s are now sold out, but you can still pre-order the CD — it’ll come shrink-wrapped and all ready for you to get signed at a show sometime!**
IT’S HERE IT’S HERE IT’S HERE! AFTER TWO AND A HALF YEARS SOMETHING FIERCE IS HERE!
I’ve been yelling about this a lot so I’ll try to calm down, quit spinning, and give you all the details. And I’ll briefly stop saying thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you. (Though I can never ever be grateful enough for your patience and support. I’m gonna make like an NPR station during pledge week pretty soon and compulsively send you all tote bags out of gratitude.)
The record will drop on OCTOBER FIRST TWO THOUSAND ELEVEN! According to Google, October first is also Julie Andrews’ birthday, the anniversary of the creation of Mensa, and the Texarkana Egg Fest. An auspicious day. The record will be available to download on that day, from anywhere in the world, through Bandcamp.com. Physical CD’s will start shipping that week, so you should receive them shortly after that. If you pre-order the album, digital or physical, you’ll get an e-mail the moment it’s released with the entire record as a download all ready to go!
Wanna know how it sounds? The tracks “Anchorage” and “Good Morning Moon” have already been released as singles, and I’ve posted some samples of a few more on Soundcloud for your listening enjoyment. And I’ve written a few vulnerable artsy thoughts about the record, too. I hope you like it so much!
Here is how you can pre-order Something Fierce. And you should, so that I can afford to print it for you.
Digital pre-orders! For you modern types.
If you pre-order your fabulous digital double-album through Bandcamp, you’ll get a little bit of music now — if you like — and on the first of October you’ll automatically receive your tracks and shiny digital album art to download! So go ahead and pick it up now. Price is about $15.00 or whatever you feel beyond that. If you have any issues at all, e-mail me or Katie at mcminion42*at*gmail.com. Thank you!
CD pre-orders! For you who need something to
play frisbee hold.
I’ll be signing 500 copies of the physical CD for you early birds! So if you order now, your album/s will come autographed (no dedications, sorry. Bring it to me at a show and I’ll sign it to you). If you buy the CD, you’ll also get the album as a download that will be delivered on October 1st — so however long the postal service takes to your corner of the world, you can still join the CD release party that day!
The double disc costs $25 autographed, a little less ($20) if you want to wait until the release and get a not-autographed copy. I’m absorbing a little of the cost of international S&H because I really want to keep overseas shipping affordable for my friends across borders!
I’m a CD person still — I buy physical discs and play full albums in my car and in my house. But I know there’s an environmental cost, and I’d like to minimize that where I can. So this is a carbon-neutral run of CD’s, or as close as we can get to it — they’re printed with soy ink on post-consumer recycled materials; the trays are made of recycled water bottles, and carbon credits are purchased to offset manufacturing and shipping.
**Donors’ Circle Members: remember that you’re entitled to two free copies of the record if you like! There are other goodies for you as well. Be sure to fill out the form I sent you in order to receive your benefits. But if you want to order more copies, these links above are for you. Any questions, just e-mail me or Katie at mcminion42*at*gmail.com!
And thank you thank you thank you thank you for your order. I fantasize about this all going very smoothly. (But it never seems to go completely perfect. So if you have any issues along the way, just let me know, mcminion42*at*gmail.com, and we’ll do our very best to get it sorted.)
Bounce bounce bounce bounce bounce.
If you want to know more about the record itself, here are some details. Something Fierce is a double album with two parts — vol. I: Good Luck With That and vol. II: from Alaska.
I announced the album and formed the Donors’ Circle in March 2009, and I began writing songs and booking musicians for the project around that time. Recording began in November 2009 and has continued up to last week — at intervals between touring — we did studio work in Seattle, Los Angeles, Brooklyn, Austin, and Anchorage. About thirty people made noises for the record, and over a hundred fans helped to fund it. I did all the editing myself before, during, and after the 49>50 Tour, and this spring I even added some songs written on that journey.
Here’s a track list so you can see if your favorite song from the live shows is on Something Fierce (track order not necessarily finalized):
Something Fierce, vol. I: Good Luck With That
- Good Morning Moon
- The Avocado Song
- Highway Five
- Dear Mister Darcy
- All New (Heart Shut Tight)
- Temporal Dominoes
- Press or Say Three (your call is important to us)
- Ina Flew the Coop
- Free Bird
Something Fierce, vol. II: from Alaska
- Whistle While You Wait
- Early Is as Early Does
- I Wish I Were a Real Alaskan Girl
- The Underground (One Bird at a Time)
- Coffee by Numbers (Faon’s Song)
- Perilous Road
- Aurora Borealis
Things I’d love for you to know about this record:
- Some lines and songs are in fact inspired by friends on Twitter and Facebook. Usually they know if/when they’re to thank.
- I consumed enough fruit snacks while editing this record to feed a crowded day care center for a month.
- For this record my mother played the turkey baster, my sister banged on her cello all over like a drum, my brother clicked a mechanical pencil and played his trumpet valves with his nose, my stepdad played the harp and jaw harp, Brian Adams shot his Hasselblad, and I played goat toenails and shook my dead cat’s ashes in a tin.
- You can perhaps hear a number of musical and lyrical compressions honoring Zelda, Dr. Horrible, Elizabeth Bennett, and a number of other fictional characters.
- I dare you to figure out which songs I wrote before, during, and after my divorce. You’ll probably be wrong. But there’s a lot more relationship stuff in this album than I’ve previously included, and it’s more vulnerable than what I’ve written in the past. I take a lot of musical/stylistic risks and I hope they pay off and move someone.
- One of the songs sounds like it’s about a breakup or an unhealthy relationship, but it’s actually an ode to a beer I fell completely in love with on first taste.
- There are really a lot more drums and a lot more noisy hollering of the sort I do on tour.
- The typewriter and rainstick can be heard on about half of the tracks, though they’re subtler than in the past.
- Several members of the Donors’ Circle sang and whistled along with the chorus of “Good Morning Moon” from their homes all over the world, and their voices are part of the record.
- Some songs and characters and scenarios were completely fictional, as in “Dear Mister Darcy,” until they came true to the letter. Spooky.
The physical product will be very pretty, I think. The two discs will come in a carbon-neutral matte digipak, and it will include a 16-page book with all the lyrics and gorgeous photos by my friend Brian Adams and illustrations by my amazing Mom, Karen Luke Fildes. My favorite part: no UPC code on the outside of the artwork. When the disc is sold retail (very very seldom), we’ll put the barcode on a sticker outside the shrink wrap — so once you open your music it will be simply that, music, with the UPC business hidden away in an inside corner with the credits and copyright information where you’ll hardly see it. Fans funded this project, and fans are mostly buying it straight from me, so the economic scope of this project is a little too simple to merit interfering with the artwork by adding a barcode to the outside. Somehow that feels right to me.
Here are some of my thoughts on the record from a little earlier this year. It’s a little different than what’s come before. The vocals sound a lot more like what you might hear at a live show, because I’ve done hundreds of live shows since I last went into the studio. Something Fierce is truly my own voice, and the voices of my community (including you guys!). And it represents a lot of growth musically and personally since Got to Fly, my last full-length album. It’s less overtly nerdy (remember Got to Fly was a commission about Firefly and BSG) and yet still laced with geekiness throughout. I hope hope hope hope hope that you like it. I hope it makes you feel something once in a while. I hope it’s art worth loving for a few of you, and worth enjoying for the rest of you.
Okay Marian, quit talking and get some rest.
P.S. If you think you’re going to like this, tell the world to get on board. http://mariancall.bandcamp.com/album/something-fierce is the link to share around the web.
Tags: alaska, anchorage, confession, marian-call, Music, recording, something fierce
It’s 3am, I have a headache from HTML and ProTools, and I leave on a jet plane Sunday to start my traveling again (DC! NYC! Philly! Cambridge! Look Lively!). Glory Moses I’m tired. Feels like I just got done with the last tour, even though I’ve mostly been home for six months.
But I’m thankful. I’m sitting here thinking how much a collection of friends and strangers online has come to mean to me — lots of individuals, but the whole community too. I’m about to finish a project you guys have helped see me through, some of you for more than two years. Some of you gave money, tons of you gave encouragement, thousands have come to shows now. I’m sorta blown away. I am really thankful to you. And I take my responsibility to you very seriously. I’m happy to come see some of you again, I wish I could see you all.
(Sorry, sleep-deprived headachey Marian = sappy serious 3am blog post I may regret. Feel free to skip and return when I’m wittier & more amusing (and that’s a sincere, not a sarcastic invitation).)
I’m finding this album tough to finish — it’s called Something Fierce, and release announcements and pre-sales are imminent. I mean, it’s hard to finish for the usual reason: the total amount of “Stuff Marian Takes On” over “Time Marian Actually Has” always winds up with a remainder, at the moment probably about 7/5. But it’s also hard to finish because it’s just…big. I feel the weight of how much people have helped me with this and invested in it. I wonder how it will be received. I know I’ll get some of my first proper critiques. I know some people will like other versions of things better. And I know I’ll always be vaguely amazed that it’s not sitting on my shoulders anymore like a big cat, the way it has been since early 2009. It’s heavy but it’s also kept me grounded.
Let’s go back in time a bit, since few of you are clear on the chronology: I launched this album project with a fundraiser in early 2009 when I had just separated from my husband of 6 years and I was in Seattle, far from Alaska, alone with no car or home or income. It was quite a shock landing there. After sitting on the curb for a month wondering what to do, announcing Something Fierce was my first step forward. It was a thing to walk toward so I could get up, get moving, and either become an artist or give it up and go be a secretary or waitress. A lot of you guys took care of me back then, as I launched into about a year of having nowhere to live and no income except what I earned singing for my supper and fundraising for the record. And all that help is hard for an independent lady to stomach. But I tell you what, for every time you have ever tipped a street or bar or online musician, dear reader, I am thankful. For every dime you’ve launched into a kickstarter project, I owe you one.
I bought a car with no money in Seattle — not sure why they let me have it — and I drove and drove until I got back to Alaska. I had never driven long distance before, I had always been driven around by others. But for the first time I was behind the wheel. When I made it back to Anchorage I started laying groundwork for the record, and I began laying down audio in November 2009.
It’s 2011 now, and I’ve recorded with nearly thirty people in New York, LA, Seattle, Texas, and Anchorage, with a hiatus to play all fifty states + 5 provinces. And in the end I don’t know whether all that will be worth it for the audio that comes out. But it will be worth it for the meaning. The process means a lot to me. The people mean a lot to me. For example, the project was missing a few folks who came to be part of my music community after the bulk of the recording was done. But I got a few chances this spring to record pickups, and I jumped on the chance to get Bryan Ray, Brandon Cockburn, Errol Bressler, Aaron Benolkin, and Nick Petumenos in the studio. And I’m so happy I did, because now their voices (drums, guitars, bass, pedal steel, engineering) are on the record. It feels more complete with them than if I’d released it sooner. When I hear a song recorded in five different cities, all these musicians I love are in the same space for a second. And that’s more home than anywhere I’ve been since 2009.
Something Fierce is not as funny or geeky as the last few things I’ve released. Got to Fly was commissioned to be about geek stuff, and I like to release funny singles, but this record is just straight Marian, recalling my first record, Vanilla. Marian happens to be a geek, so this art happens to be a geek’s experience of a long stretch of road. But instead of fiction it’s fact; it’s a couple years of couch-crashing, debt, penance, illness, insane travel, recession, divorce, and reinvention. That’s not to say it’s dark. But it’s not sunny. It’s dappled light — with interesting clouds, the thick substantial ones that might and might not become weather. Like “Anchorage,” if you’ve heard it.
Why say this now? I have no idea. 3am headaches while working on your last song will do that to you I suppose. And perhaps I feel a need to confess and disclaim as I finish. Not because I think the product is unworthy, but because it’s honest, and honesty evokes a little confession and a little context, even when it’s not required.
I’m not sure what happens after this record is not on my shoulders anymore. I don’t know where the compass will point exactly, this record has been my Polaris for so long — I might spin for a bit. But mostly I don’t know how I could ever have enough days or words or songs to hug and thank all of you. It would require more sustained gratitude and sincerity than I think most humans are capable of at my age. I try, but I keep lapsing.
Perhaps the sheer number of you folks out there (you awesome amazing folks) is starting to frustrate my impulses for deeper connection; it’s hard as this group of fans changes from “y’all” to “all y’all. ” I find myself protesting often how deeply I feel for my online community, and I think that’s mostly because I don’t have the time anymore to pay you each as much attention as I feel is fair for all the investment you’ve put into me. That imbalance bothers me, though it can’t be helped. Anyway I’m so thankful to you, if you’re reading this, for getting me through the last two years and into the next one. Even if you never paid a dime, your attention for a moment ultimately helped/helps to make this record I’m about to finish, and your attention is precious. You didn’t have to spend it here. I’m grateful.
Oh Marian, be quiet and get to work making a kickass record. It’s 4am already, time’s a-wastin’.
(But seriously. I hope you like it.)