Monday, January 14, 2019

Unboxing the "Pokemon Let's Go Pikachu/Eevee" Soundtrack

While the "Pokemon Let's Go" soundtrack may be available digitally in the states, in Japan you can pick up a three-disc CD set. The music may be the same, but the added contents may make it more appealing to some. Oh, and haircuts are...interesting:

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Interview: RealBreakingNate @ Wizard World Madison 2018

At Wizard World Madison 2018, I had an opportunity to interview RealBreakingNate, a well-known Pokemon YouTuber. We talk about how he got started doing videos, and some of the panels he ran at the convention:


A press pass was provided for this event.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Musician Interview: Charity Goodin ("The Power Of Us" co-performer)

Charity Goodin
The following in an interview with Charity Goodin, co-performer of “The Power Of Us”, the ending theme of the recently released Pokémon movie of the same name.

Where are you from, and how did you get into doing music?

I’m originally from Maryland-just outside of Washington D.C..

Growing up, our home was filled with music. My mother took my sister and me to church to join the choir at five years old. Even at that young age, I enjoyed being able to create the perfect sound I wanted for the lyrics and songs I was singing. I started playing clubs long before I was old enough to be a customer. It was a bit odd at times-when I was in a rock band, I would sit in the car before we went on stage, sing, and then go sit in the car so as not to draw too much attention to myself. Other memorable performances include fronting a Yugoslavian Tamburitza Orchestra (singing in Serbo-Croatian), working with swing and big bands, singing in church choirs in various parts of the country, and now there’s a great group of jazz musicians I perform with called Del Sol. It was through our jazz gigs that I met Ed Goldfarb, the composer and songwriter for Pokémon.

What was your experience with Pokémon before working on "The Power Of Us"?

Most of what I knew came from my son, who was born in 1991. He and his friends would speak in the Pokémon voices and sing the theme songs. That’s really about it.

How did you wind up singing on it? 

Ed and I performed some jazz gigs together, and he asked if I’d like to do some holiday recordings for a CD he wrote and produced. Later, he asked me to sing for a Pokémon demo he was working on, which became the S21 theme song, “Under the Alolan Moon”.

I was thrilled to work with Ed. He is an amazing composer. The harmonies, the complex structures of the pieces are a bit deceptive to the listener. They are so easy to get into your head that you don’t realize the brilliant work that took place.

What was the recording process like?

The recording was detailed and meticulous, and for me, fun. I sang all the parts of the harmony, quite a few times to get the desired effect of a choir. Ed was masterful at getting what he wanted for the vocal sound from me. I think the end result is great.

Is there a particular part of the song you wanted to call out?

I love those harmonies and the hook of the song. The lyrics are very uplifting and positive.

What other musical work have you done recently?

Right now I am getting ready for a couple of Holiday shows. One at the Deerfield Winery Caves in Sonoma and I’m one of the featured soloists for the Santa Rosa Symphony Holiday Pops concert. Amongst other classic holiday songs, I’ll finally be performing “Let It Go” from Disney’s Frozen. I say “finally” because since the movie came out, every time I performed at a wedding or event where children were present, they would ask if I’d sing that song. It was very sweet, but a jazz quartet doesn’t usually have that in the repertoire. Aside from that, I’ve been in a writing/recording collaboration with Rob Fordyce (the bassist from my jazz group), and Jimmy Hobson (a recording engineer at Marinwest Studios).

What's your website, and where can you be found on social media?

My website is charitygoodin.com, and you can also find me on Facebook.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Poke Press Digest Podcast: Episode 22-Erica Schroeder/Victini Movie(s) Music

For the first segment (0:55-7:16), I interview Erica Schroeder, a long-time voice actor for the Pokemon dub. We talk about how she got into the anime, her work as the singing voice of Meloetta, and her roles in the recently released movie "Pokemon: The Power of Us".

The second segment (7:23-56:25) covers the music of the 14th Pokemon movies-and no, that isn't a mistake. Anne from Pikapi Podcast helps me sort out the extra-large amount of material we had to cover this time around. Listen to find out if two songs from Every Little Thing or the two versions of "Follow Your Star" come out on top.



Links:

Segment 1:
Erica's Website
Wizard World* Website

*A press pass was provided for this event.

Segment 2:
Pikapi Podcast
Alex Nackman Interview
Kathryn Raio Interview

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

Discussion: The Music of "Pokemon the Movie Black/White" (Part 1)

In an unusual move, there are actually two 14th Pokemon movies, each with a different ending theme, as well as score. Listen as Anne from Pikapi Podcast and I discuss the Japanese and English end themes of these films, and other musical aspects. Does"The Sky/The Voice" top two versions of "Follow Your Star"? Here's the first part:


If you need something to tide you over a bit longer, here's a recap of last weekend's Wizard World event in Madison:


The livestream includes me unpacking a Pokemon-themed mystery box, so be sure to check it out!

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Got any opinions on the music of the Keldeo movie?

Not long from now, Anne from Pikapi Podcast and I will be sitting down to discuss the music of the 15th Pokemon movie, "Kyurem Vs. the Sword of Justice ", otherwise known as the Keldeo movie. We'll be comparing "Memories" by Rola and "It's All Inside Of You" by Jess Turner, the Japanese and English ending themes (respectively) of the movie. We'll also be discussing the score and other musical elements:


If you have an opinions, feel free to share them with a comment on this post!

Monday, November 19, 2018

Psy, Yai, Yai (Parody of "Bye, Bye, Bye" by N'Sync)

The (arguably) best comic relief Pokemon gets his own song in this latest parody, which takes 2000's "Bye, Bye, Bye" and flips it on its head (perhaps Psyduck can relate) to deliver a moving story:


Notes:

So, background on this one. I originally wrote this in 2008-I’m not sure what prompted it specifically. I heard the original back in 2000, of course (imagine if Weird Al had done something like this for Pokémon 2000!). Obviously the idea was to capture the mixed feelings Misty had for her Psyduck in the lyrics, covering the inconvenience/embarrassment side but transitioning to a more positive tone by the end as she actively defends Psyduck. Of course, this turns the original song on its head, which is something I enjoy doing in my parodies.

I picked to have this recorded now mainly to time up with the release of “Let’s Go”. It was a bit more challenging than previous times because I hired different people to do the instruments and the vocals, giving me my first real experience mixing a music track, which I think turned out relatively well.

One interesting production tidbit-the Psyduck sounds were originally intended to sound as close as possible to the echoing “byes” in the original, but what we wound up with actually sounds more interesting to me as it sounds as if Psyduck doesn’t understand what he should be doing in what is ostensibly his own song. It also keeps the song a bit fresher throughout.

Links:
SHARI
Tom Bedlam

Friday, November 09, 2018

Poke Press Digest Podcast: Episode 21-"How to End a Pokemon Movie (Musically)" (Anime Banzai 2018)

For this single segment episode, we have a panel that was recorded at last month's Anime Banzai in Utah. Listen as Anne from Pikapi Podcast and I share what we've learned from discussing Pokémon music, followed by a few questions from the audience:



Links:

Pikapi Podcast
Anime Banzai
Recap Video

Friday, November 02, 2018

How to End a Pokemon (Musically) (Part 1)

At this year's Anime Banzai in Utah, Anne and I held a panel talking about what we learned so far discussing the ending themes of the Pokemon movies. In this first part, Anne and I share our backgrounds and how and why the discussion series got started:

Friday, October 05, 2018

Poke Press Digest Podcast: Episode 20-European Pokemon Music/More Shorts

This installment has two segments. First (0:46-38:39), Anne from Pikapi Podcast and I discuss a variety of Pokémon music that originated in Europe. Our choices include songs from the German version of the second movie and openings of the Italian dub.

The second segment (38:47-44:15) is a pair of short pieces-one where I compare the music of Octopath Traveler to Shinji Miyazaki’s work on the Pokémon Anime, and another where I announce an appearance at the upcoming Anime Banzai in Utah.



Links:

Segment 1:
Pikapi Podcast

Segment 2:
Anime Banzai