Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The "Fun" Mixtape

First draft of front cover design for the mixtape I restored/mastered for Professor Anarchy.

Second and I think (?) final draft.

I'll probably be posting more in-progress work on the blog here now that I have the new site setup. Though it seems to me like Google is re-compressing them so I'll have to use Flickr in the future. "Good enough for Jazz," yeah?

Monday, September 5, 2011

A Mythic Primer of Transmedia

By James Curcio

There's a lot of talk about transmedia lately.

Haven't heard it? Well, there has been. Trust us.

And heaven knows there are a lot of transmedia evangelists out there. So I just want to talk over some of the possibilities presented by transmedia storytelling as a concept, without pretending that this is the final word on anything.

Most of us (er, them) are motivated by deep excitement. And of course, many corporations are also excited by it as a new way of perceiving the "life cycle of their brands," and "customer engagement," and other terms that sound really creepy in the "bad touch" kind of way. But we see all of the possibilities for new ways of engaging with content. Some of us see exciting creative possibilities and some see dollar signs. (I prefer to see both, when possible.)

A warning
On screen these instructions show
viewers how they can play along.
Engagement. Right there, some people get lost. "You mean there is more than one way to engage with content?"

Yes, there is.  It is not just that you are engaged, but also how. When you read a book, you're engaging with that story in a very different way then when it is shown to you in a comic, and when you watch a movie. Your brain is being engaged in different ways to create the narrative.

With a comic book, you are imagining the continuity of time, you are building mental movies out of the storyboard of the comic. The artist provides static visual cues. With a book, you are given the conceptual cues, but all of the sense experience has to be engaged. As such, it is both a deeply rewarding form of taking in media, because so much of the creative process is left up to you, and a very difficult one in terms of generating engagement, because it isn't a passive process. ("Why People Don't Read.")

With a novel, there is a high entrance price, a potentially high payoff. Movies are a passive process where visual, temporal, auditory cues are provided. Boredom is a potential enemy in all cases, but since there's a larger investment in reading a book, it seems to follow that if you get more than halfway through a book, you've already invested so much in creating that experience that you will insist on seeing it through to the end. It's very easy to switch channels on the TV, or surf away through YouTube or Netflix. Commitment seems to be so low on a platform like YouTube that it can be hard to keep attention for as "much" as two minutes.

Regardless of format, all of these are blueprints for an experience.

Of course, there's a dark potential in transmedia that the conspiracy theorists have also latched onto, producing a sort of paranoid PR-wing to the transmedia movement. I can't say if this paranoia is well placed or not, because it is based around things that haven't happened yet.  Can't see the ominous implication of transmedia? The fears engaged here are what drive the plot of the movie, "The Game."

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Fallen Nation Audiobook Soundtrack

Calling all cars! I've set up the bandcamp to begin releasing the chapters of the Fallen Nation: Party At The World's End audiobook as unique albums (one per chapter).

Some old albums and collaborations that tie into the narratives of the novel are included on that page, but the real purpose of that page is for the audiobook albums. These will have a great deal of original soundtrack material. I already have many hours of material from my work and past collaborations with many other musicians, but there is still plenty of room for new material- your own, or for us to work on together. I am not aware of anyone else having done an audiobook like this before. (Though it wouldn't stop me if someone has.)

Contact me if you have material you'd like included. It is preferable if you can provide it as .wav or .aif though high res .mp3 can work. It'd also help if you are actually familiar with the book.

 I would also consider voice actors though if you're interested in that, I need reliability. It'll be a real hassle if someone is reading a chapter and drops off the face of the planet halfway through. So if no better and fully reliable options present themselves I'll be reading a lot of it.

Music will all be used under a creative commons license. I'm asking permission to use submissions, not rights to own it. 

Time-frame: I'm aiming to have at least the first album released in 2012. The sooner the better.

 [Check out some of the books, albums, and soon movies produced by Mythos Media and our various media partners.]