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I’m all over your TV August 13, 2009

Posted by markgeil in Music.
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I’m kind of a big deal in the ATL these days. You won’t know it until December, but I’m all over the TV. Like, extreme close-ups. I’m a total actor. I’m thinking of going pro. And, we didn’t even have to have a massive wall built around our house for my big TV breakthrough.

Hopefully you get the Gospel Music Channel, because I pretty much own their airwaves now. Also hopefully you get the channel because we don’t and I need someone to tell me about my shows. Yes, that’s right, I said show-sss, as in plural. Friday night I went to the taping of the Matthew West Christmas special. This afternoon I was at the Christmas with Compassion special, watching Stephanie Smith and Decemberadio. I wasn’t performing with any of the bands, or actually saying anything. I was what they call in the business an “Audience Member”, which means I sat in a chair, smiled a lot, looked incredibly entertained, and clapped on cue. It takes major acting chops, so they put me on the front row. Actually, that might have happened because I took my cute daughters with me. And actually, there was very little acting involved, because I was quite entertained the whole time.

Matthew West performed several originals, some for the first time ever (since it’s August and not even Wal Mart is ready for Christmas yet). They were excellent. One will be a duet with Amy Grant on the new Veggie Tales Christmas DVD. It’s called “Give This Christmas Away” and it’s a brilliant notion. He also made up a brand new song between takes with the following lyrics: “This Christmas Special, it’s very special.” Stephanie Smith covered a few classics (including, sadly, one of my least favorite Christmas songs ever, but I must admit her sass on the Figgy Pudding line made me smile), along with a beautiful arrangement of O Come, O Come, Emanuel that she and the band worked up on the van ride the night before. Decemberadio, who rock live, brought their own wonderful arrangement to God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen.

So, after many hours hanging out with rock stars on TV, I have some observations. These will be very useful if you have any plans to be a TV rock star someday. Seriously, you’ll thank me later. Pay attention.

Rock stars are all very interested in the mix in their monitors. Monitors are the hearing-aid looking things they all wear that let them hear the sounds of all the instruments. They’re constantly talking to the disembodied voice of the director saying, “Tony, I need more bass,” or “T-Bone, I need more of the click track,” or even “Could I get more of me in Mix Two?” I highly recommend asking for more or less of the click track, often. It just sounds cool.

Rock stars who play guitars have a new required fashion accessory. It’s called “Useless bandana hanging out of back right pocket.” They’re only available in the finest music stores, apparently. Honestly, I saw multiple guitarists in multiple bands with a bandana stuffed partway into their right back pocket of their skinny jeans. One of them even had a bandana that almost matched his flannel shirt. Sweet! I think the purpose of these might be akin to the sheets of gauze that hang off the costumes of figure skaters, thereby accentuating the flowing-ness of their spins and jumps. When a rock star guitarist is really really rocking, well, something just needs to flow.

Rock stars who have been around the block a time or two are unfazed when people appear out of nowhere with sticks in their hands and start poking the sticks in the rock stars faces. These people are not there to harm you. They are re-applying your makeup. It helps you look exactly the same as you did before they reapplied your makeup a few minutes before.

Footwear is very very important for rock stars, and you only have two choices: cowboy boots or Converse All Stars. You may vary your color and patterns as long as you choose one or the other. Also, all rock stars, and I seriously mean every single one of them, dress in layers. It would seem that all mothers of rock stars gave them advice when they were pre-rock-star children about dressing in layers because you never know what kind of weather the day will bring. At a very minimum they have a shirt and vest. Sometimes shirt and jacket, usually leather. Sometimes shirt, tie, scarf, vest, and jacket, usually leather. All on a single rock star. And here’s the thing. When I’m hanging out with the rock stars after their set, near the food table (of course), they look absolutely ridiculous. It’s actually very difficult to talk to them without chuckling out loud. I think they get dressed in the morning, and then ask their buddy, “How do I look?” and if he says, “You look ridiculous,” they know they are ready for a day of rock.

So remember, layers, proper footwear, copious makeup, useless bandanas, and more click track. You’re on your way, my friend.

Oh, and also, can you let me know how I look on your TV come December? Thanks.

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[…] Posted by markgeil in Music. Tags: Amy Grant, Christmas, Matthew West, Veggie Tales trackback I mentioned seeing a taping of a Matthew West Christmas special in which he performed a song called “Give […]


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