Sunday, November 22, 2009
Singing the Praises of Firefly
One thing you can say about Joss Whedon shows is that they inspire a lot of music.
This is especially true of Firefly and Serenity. The Big Damn Heroes have been immortalized in song by several musicians, from the Bedlam Bards to Marian Call.
The latest group to add to the Browncoats Hit Parade is a band out of St. Louis called he Browncoats. Three of its members, and a crew member, visited the Serenity Salute recently in Los Angeles. They allowed people to sample its first CD, Space Age Loser. It also includes a DVD of its first video, a cover of "Hero of Canton" that has been popular on YouTube and MySpace. The video won an award at the Serenity Salute.
Co-Pilot Gary Miller and Air Marshall Buckley Roberts had been in an industrial rock band for years before they decided to perform songs based on Firefly. Their version of "Hero of Canton" was the first song. "We just gave the mp3 away, and just spread it to as many people as we knew," Miller said. "Later, we decided, hey, let's just do a whole album out of this and create an entire band."
They were joined by lead singer and Captain Paul Moerke, and bass player Dominic Anthony. Moerke was also a pilot, and played a big part in the music video. It premiered last September during DragonCon in Atlanta. Amy Jordan also appeared in the video, but is also a lighting engineer, and helps promote the CD.
Both Miller and Roberts admitted they were late bloomers as Firefly fans, but they were hooked when they first saw the show. "When I saw Firefly," Miller says, "I was like 'oh, my God, how could I have not seen this? How could I not know this existed?' I come to realize when we started selling this record that the majority of the people that at least know Firefly that are buying the record are also late bloomers. Bought the DVDs later on"
The band is also influenced by people close to them. "Trans-Siberian Railroad," for example, was written for Gary's wife, while "Amelia" was written for Paul's daughter.
They have done some gigs in the St. Louis area, and plan more in the next few months. Their shows are different from typical rock concerts. Their opening acts are actually comedy groups like "Clown-vis", which is Elvis as a clown, and an improv group led by Bill Cott, who appeared on Saturday Night Live.
They've also been able to give their CDs to Adam Baldwin, and Rafael and Yan Feldman. They've also using social media websites including Facebook and Twitter.
"We just want to keep the train rolling and the keep the variety up," Miller says. "We want to give people a package that doesn't just give them a rock album, gives them a lot to soak in."
They also want to do another CD next year. Before that, they plan an EP that includes bluegass versions of their songs and new songs. They also hope to make more videos, including a planned spoof of Star Wars. t will also produce a song for the "Browncoats: Redemption" fan film.
More information about the band is available at thebrowncoats.org, including links to MySpace, Twitter and iTunes.