Remember that big project we said we were working on that would be worth the wait? This isn’t it. This is just a little thank-you for being so patient because it’s taking so darn long.
This song – based on Peter Schilling’s 1983 hit “Major Tom (Coming Home)” – was something we concocted a few years ago; probably 2010, because I remember working on lyrics during PAX East in Boston at the Hynes. We finished the lyrics and Jude got most of the synths worked out, but it just didn’t feel like the time was right, for a few different factors. So we shelved it and moved on to other projects that seemed more exciting and timely (or in the case of our current secret project, timeless). (more…)
Jude and I do this because it’s fun. But I won’t lie — the recognition we’ve gotten from fans is huge to us, and we have shared a secret dream since we started. We never planned to be rich or famous (and to date, we’re operating according to plan), but we did want one thing. And on June 29, 2013, we got it.
A few weeks ago, I sent in four of our tracks — “Arcade Gaming Shrine,” “Rage Quitter,” “Halo ((All I Play-Oh))” and “Learn to Spell” — for consideration. You submit songs the old-fashioned way: You burn a CD and mail it to them, and they ask that you just send a few songs. The good Doctor and his team listen to everything personally and screen every song, so I didn’t have any expectations of hearing things soon. But the encouraging words from our fans made me feel it was the worth the effort and we could let ourselves dream just a little bit.
And there it is, “Arcade Gaming Shrine,” right between Rick Moranis and Jimmy Fallon — real, honest-to-goodness professional funny people.
I mean, seriously? It’s all we’ve ever wanted. If you are a band that wants to “make it,” maybe you dream of touring or having a video or doing groupies — but if you are a couple of dorky guys who copy Weird Al’s formula and replace all the relevant pop-culture parts with highly specialized references to videogames, then there is no better form of “making it” than being on Dr. Demento.
This gives us a great morale boost as we move forward. And yes, we are moving forward. You have not heard the last of Palette-Swap Ninja — we promise.
And again, thank you for the support, fans. You are both great people.
Yeah, pretty much the same as the plans for 2012. This past year really caught us at a bad time — Jude has a family to raise, and I just slacked. The size and scope of what we are planning is pretty daunting and it actually demotivated me — I was just plain scared, so I put it off and did other things. If you’ve ever seen the old stage musical The Music Man, it was a little like that for me — the kids in the school band are taught to “think” about the music rather than actually take lessons. That’s what I did — I considered this thing, a lot. But we are making progress, slowly, and it’s just going to have to be one of those when-it’s-done-it’s-done things. We have talked about that aspect of it and we both think it’s worth doing right rather than rushing it, and that it has the potential to be very awesome no matter when it comes out. But that said, I’m more serious about making progress than I have been in a while, so here’s hoping. Kat is actually helping me out with idea generation, lyric writing, and just plain organization and scheduling. So that can’t hurt.
Thanks for your patience. We’re simply not rock stars.
Check out LevelSpike’s animated video for “Halo ((All I Play-Oh))”!
So awesome! I love the RB drum kit!
First off, thanks for all the support in 2011. It was a good year for us: We finally finished our WoW song. Kat made us another great video (though we really thought someone would do a full machinima video for it — that’s kind of what we had in mind when we wrote it). We also snuck in a Beatles track. We started posting our work on the Funny Music Project Sideshow. We closed the chapter on our first ten songs by grouping them as an album. And maybe most importantly, we committed to our next project.
That’s what I want to talk about here, but not too much. I’m a big fan of setting realistic expectations, and I think it’s only fair to give you a heads-up that we won’t have this next thing ready for some time. The next project is a little more ambitious than our usual stuff, and it will take more time as a result. There’s an old saying: “Cheap, fast, and good — pick two.” Well, we’re going for cheap and good.
Jude and I have been kicking around a few ideas for a while and one of them really took shape early last year. We didn’t really do anything with the idea at the time, because we were focused on Rage Quitter and Alliance, but we put this idea on deck for the next thing after they were finished and out the door. Since that point, we’ve been spending all our PSwap time on it; some research is involved. I can’t give you a hint because a hint would give it all away; it will be better when it’s done and we can just say “It’s this” and you will hopefully go “Holy cow, you’re kidding, really?” and we’ll go “Yeah, for real, you can download it here.” And then you will tell all your friends and say “You’ve gotta hear this” and then we will be famous on the internet. This is the loose plan. Please note your part in it.
Really, that’s all I wanted to say. We’re heading into a public drought but a private wellspring. We didn’t break up and we didn’t get bored. We’re just working in secret in the dojo.
Happy 2012 to you and yours. We hope to see some of you at PAX East again this year. And if you bought a t-shirt that wouldn’t suck.
This one’s been a long time coming! We’ve been working on our parody of Thomas Dolby’s “She Blinded Me With Science” around for almost a year — and it did not come easy. In fact, we made “Rage Quitter” in the middle of it because it was driving us crazy and we needed a break! But hopefully you like what you hear:
Download the MP3 if you dig it.
More info after the jump.
A light at the end of the tunnel! Jude and I have been working on our next song for a long time — before “Rage Quitter,” actually. I found a file that said “feb mix” which means we’ve been talking about it and recording bits since even before that. And we had thought that debuting this song with a video would be the way to go, but on second thought…no it’s not. We certainly hope this is the kind of song that the community might decide is worthy of a video. If so, we will be flattered and welcome it. If not, there’s no real reason to hold this song just for that hope. You’ll get the joke without the visual.
We have also come to an important decision. This will be the LAST Palette-Swap Ninja song…in our debut collection, “Still in Beta.” Heh. We both feel like 10 is a good round number, and after four years of doing this, it’s nice to pause and say “achievement unlocked.” All it really means is that the MP3s will be tagged with the album title and you can download everything in one chunk. We’re working on album art now so it will look all nice on your iPod. We’re also going to add the lyrics to this site — what were we thinking by not posting them with the songs themselves? Silly.
Our next project is already decided and that will be a fresh start of sorts, but we won’t be ready to talk about that for a while, due to personal schedules and being busy in real life. But we’re not taking a break, we’re working on it — just can’t pin down a release date or anything yet, and it’s too early to discuss (not like we ever do that anyway). Still working on lyrics and Jude is currently tracking drums. And, if we’re lucky, we might play our first live show next year, if the stars align. Ever onward!
So…check back here soon for our 10th song.
Download the full-length MP3 for free here.
As mentioned in an earlier post, this song came from a random idea from one of our fans, Chris Repetti. He sent a note on Facebook and it instantly made sense to us. So we did it! And we thank him. He’s a fan of TalkRadar, so that’s why the song debuted on TalkRadar #157 first.
More details after the jump. (more…)
I politely said in our FAQ that you could contact us with song ideas but truth be told, I think it’s better when people don’t. It’s mostly because humor is entirely subjective — what’s funny to you is not always funny to someone else, and in our case, we might not even know enough to deliver the joke on your behalf. Brett Elston from GamesRadar came up with a great idea a few years back and pitched it to me, and I liked the joke — but I just didn’t have the game knowledge to pull it off. If it’s your idea, you know why it’s funny, and 99 times out of 100, you should do it.
But that one time out of 100 happened a few months ago. I got a message on Facebook from Chris Repetti with a suggestion that was really just a title. But it was the right title — it was the kind of title that once you hear it, the entire rest of the song falls into place around it. “Three Red Lights,” “The Viva Pinata Song,” and “Halo ((All I Play-Oh))” were like that too; I knew they were worth doing just from hearing the jokey phrase over the title of the song in my head. Jude and I both loved the idea instantly. So we’ve rolled the dice and Chris’ idea will be our next song. We get by with a little help from our friends.
We are currently in the later mixing stages; there may be multiple passes before we get to a final mix that’s ready to release. I need to record a few game sound effects to put the bow on top of the song’s concept/jokes. As a fan, Chris has asked that it debut on TalkRadar, and since it was his idea and he’s getting basically nothing but our deep gratitude for the song idea, this can be arranged! When I have more info on exactly when it’s up, we’ll post it here.
If you are into classic arcade culture at all, you know what I’m talking about. The day before PAX East 2011, we drove from Boston to New Hampshire for a pilgrimage to the largest arcade in the world. This is our story.