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Great Disappointment Lyric Video!

Watch The Great Disappointment Lyric Video

The Great Disappointment is a thing that actually happened, when a Bible scholar convinced thousands of people that the 2nd Coming was going to happen in 1843 or 1844. Dates came and went, and the final, for sure, no-doubt-about-it date of October 22, 1844 passed with nothing happening.

Some people lost faith, some people redoubled their faith, and some people said that something did happen that day but no one saw it. Either way, “The Great Disappointment” makes a good title for an emo rock song, so that’s what I set out to make. Another band uses the name for a song that’s not ostensibly about the historical event so I added “of 1844” to be specific and differentiate.

From The American Songbook: Redacted! Available on bandcamp, spotify, Apple Music, and limited CDs available here at our online store!

It’s heeeeere! New album out today!!

The American Songbook: Redacted is out!

It’s a little after midnight here on the East Coast of the U.S. and the new album is now officially available through just about every streaming service! There’s Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, and the most artist-friendly of them all: Bandcamp!

It’s even Bandcamp Friday today, which means bandcamp waives the artist’s transaction fees so pick it up today if you can. And, little insider information: I upload higher quality masters to bandcamp than I do to the other streaming services. All the major services ask for things to be 16-bit, 44.1 kHz digital audio but I upload 24-bit, 48 kHz masters to bandcamp and then they convert it to all the digital formats you can download, including some lossless formats like FLAC, ALAC, Ogg Vorbis, and more!

OK, that got nerdy and technical, but that’s sort of on brand for me, is it not?

The important thing is that the album is now out in the world! I’m super excited for you all to hear it, I’m really happy with what it says and the way it says it. Musically it was a blast to play with so many different genres, and it was a rewarding challenge to dig into some tougher topics in order to try to say something about the world today.

I even pressed 100 copies on CD, they’re hand numbered and available at the online shop. It’s a great addition to any record collection!

The big record release show is Wednesday, Oct. 12 here in NYC and it’s streaming live so you can watch from anywhere! Join me at Caveat, a beautiful nightclub on the Lower East Side, 9:30 pm. It’s gonna be fun.

OK, I’m gonna go to bed now. No wait, after I embed some music players below!

Pre-orders live for The American Songbook: Redacted CD!

American Songbook:Redacted front cover

Order today, ships Friday!

My online store is now accepting pre-orders for the CD version of The American Songbook: Redacted! And it’s even on sale for only $12 for the rest of the month! Shipping is $5 flat rate for everything in your order so if you wanted to pick up The Green L.E.D.s debut album or maybe the Rob P. Digital Box Set, it’s still only $5 to ship it all!

The album officially comes out this Friday, October 7, and if you order by Thursday morning, Oct 6, I may just send it out a day early! There are only 100 pressed, hand numbered, so don’t wait too long! And I’ll also include a bandcamp download code so you can grab a digital copy of the album without having to dust off your old CD player 🙂

I’m really excited about this album, it’s very me, in that I like a lot of different styles of music, like weird stories from American history, and love making fun of the stupider parts of American culture. Be the first (and most likely only person ever) on your block to own it!

See the CD packaging in action! 👇

@robprocks The record showed up in time for the record release party! #musician #music #cd ♬ original sound – Rob P.

Pre-Sales for The American Songbook: Redacted are live!

It’s (almost) here!

Screen cap of album on Apple MusicThe American Songbook: Redacted is now available for purchase! On Apple Music at least. Pre-sales have begun on the platform from Cupertino and if you buy in advance not only will the album download the instant it’s available on October 7, you’ll get to download the preview track “Corporations Are People Too!” right away!

I am really excited for you all to hear this new album. The songs are inspired by oddities of U.S. history and American culture and I got to play with a bunch of different styles of music. The preview track is Sunshine Pop, like Up With People or The Fifth Dimension’s “Up, Up and Away!” There’s heavy metal, disco, emo, 90s boyband pop, jazz, western music and more.

The album will be available on all platforms on October 7, and there will be a limited number of physical CDs for sale right here through my online store. In fact, the only way to get the original cover is on the physical CD. Check out the 2 versions below:

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See what’s missing?

“Original Cast Recording” will only appear on the physical CD cover because the streaming services are really picky about what kind of text you put on the cover. The album is comprised of songs from my solo show, solo meaning the entire original cast is me! Get it?

They did not.

I even had a chat conversation with customer service where they asked and I explained, but they said the rules were that the artist name had to be more prominent than any other text on the cover aside form the title. So my cute little joke didn’t make it to the streaming services.

But the music did! And you can get a track before anyone else if you pre-order on Apple music! If you’re more of a Spotify person make sure you follow me there and you’ll be notified as soon as the album is available. And bandcamp is always a good place to get the album digitally, it’s one of the more artist-friendly sites out there so give it a look.

And check back here (or on socials) on October 7th, I have some lyric videos ready to debut on release day!

The American Songbook: Redacted studio album!

The American Songbook: Redacted—The Original Cast Recording?

The American Songbook: Redacted—The Studio Album?

I haven’t figured out the official title but I do know that an album of fully-arranged studio versions of the songs from my new show will be released on CD and streaming this fall! The official album release show will be Wednesday, October 12 at Caveat, and it will be live streamed! The show is going to be fun and I’m really excited that these songs will be able to take the spotlight on a studio album.

I’ve been hard at work getting the arrangements together and I’m having so much fun with it. It may be the most “me” album I’ve done because it’s full of songs about lesser known episodes in American history and it plays around with so many different genres. There’s jazz, disco, heavy metal, Western, emo, and—possibly my favorite arrangement of the bunch—a James Bond style theme song on which I do my best to channel the vocal style of the great Shirley Bassey, who sang Goldfinger, Diamonds are Forever, and Moonraker.

I’m excited to continue to develop the show and plan to take it to a few other cities and theater festivals in the next year so stay tuned on that front. I’ll be posting a couple of lyric videos starting in late September with a tentative official album release date of Friday, October 7.

This will be my 7th full studio album (along with my live album, an EP, and The Green L.E.D.s album I released in 2021) and I have a strong feeling that it might be my best yet. I can’t wait for you to hear it!

Moving Sale!

We’ve moved!

Hopefully you didn‘t notice a thing, but we moved the entire RobPRocks website (and all subdomains and email) to a new hosting service! We made the move at the very beginning of June and we were so happy everything went relatively smoothly we decided to have a moving sale at our online store!

Through the end of June, 2022 you can use the coupon code “Moving10” for 10% off every item in the store!

Oh man, I’ve been meaning to make the move for a while now. Every year when my old hosting service would get renewed I’d begrudgingly re-up because I didn’t want to deal with the hassle of moving. But they weren’t a great service. Their server software was old, it was a pain to get the SSL certificate renewed smoothly, and everything about them felt out of date.

So poke around the site, I think everything made the trip and is right where it should be. Plus I got some new stuff, like the promo page for my show The American Songbook: Redacted! Enjoy the new digs and the sale!

Beep! Beep! Outta the Way!

A little song about Henry Ford

We all know Henry Ford as the car guy, the man who adopted the assembly line, made affordable cars, and whose company changed transportation and manufacturing, but did you know he had some strong opinions about music?

He hated the popular music of the teens and twenties, what was starting to be called jazz. He thought it was crude, vulgar, a bad influence on young people, and he blamed its popularity on a Jewish conspiracy. He blamed a lot of things on the Jews. So many, in fact, that he bought a newspaper and had them publish a weekly anti-Jewish column. It ran for 91 weeks.

Musically the old man preferred the old timey music he found wholesome so he heavily promoted square dancing and fiddle contests. Did you take square dancing in grade school gym class? Thank Henry Ford.

So I figured the best way to make fun of all of this ridiculousness would be to write Henry Ford a 1920s-style jazz song. It’s featured in my new show The American Songbook: Redacted!

The American Songbook: Rescheduled!

Timing is everything, right? Yesterday, the day before the big show, I felt pretty achy, tired, and had a slight fever, so I took a home Covid test and it was positive. That of course meant I couldn’t perform The American Songbook: Redacted, the show I’ve been working on for about 5 months, tonight at Caveat.

Thankfully the wonderful people at Caveat were very understanding and we’ve rescheduled for Wednesday, May 18, 9:30. All advance tickets for the live show and the live stream will be honored on that date.

So far the symptoms have been mild and I hope that trend continues. If the worst thing that happens is I have to reschedule my show I guess that’s acceptable. I’m really excited to get this new material up in front of people, I’m really happy with it and the songs have gone over well when I’ve worked on them at The Odd Rock Comedy Hour at QED over the last couple of months.

Speaking of which, I hope to be back and virus free in time for this month’s Odd Rock Comedy Hour on April 23, which will be more than 10 days after my initial symptoms from Monday night. I’ll test before the show and if I can’t make it I’ll find a very capable replacement and the show will be in good hands

Take care of yourselves out there and I hope to fist-bump you at a show soon!

RobP

New Solo Show Debuts April 13!

ASR-Banner-V3-2000x1000

The American Songbook: Redacted!

I’m very excited to announce that a brand new show filled with brand new songs will officially have its very first performance on Wednesday, April 13 at Caveat in NYC! The show is full of original songs inspired by American history and poking fun at American myths and culture. Song styles will include everything from jazz, heavy metal, emo, and disco, to western and Stephen Foster-style parlor songs.

This show is a preview/trial run/proof of concept that I plan to develop into a longer running show that will hit festivals and play in various cities. I’ve started working on some of the songs in my monthly show at QED, The Odd Rock Comedy Hour, so if you want a preview of the preview come on out to Astoria, where you’ll also get to see other great comedians and musicians.

And if you can’t get to NYC on April 13 there will be a streaming option! Info for streaming and the theater are on Caveat’s site.

The American Songbook: Redacted!
9:30 pm Wednesday, April 13
Caveat
21A Clinton St. NYC 10001

“Start over Again” Behind the Song

“Start over Again”

Behind the songs on The Green L.E.D.s debut album—Track 7

Start over Again kicks off “side 2” of the album and, as the advance single released back in July, it was the first public glimpse of what the album would sound like. Since The Green L.E.D.s had yet to release anything on the streaming services the decision to put out an advance single was more of an administrative one than anything. I needed to establish artist accounts at Spotify, Apple Music, and other places in order to properly promote the release of the album in the fall. Still, I wanted the single to showcase the best parts of the project and get people excited to hear more. There were three songs I considered for the single: Start over Again, What’s in Store, and Show Me Something Else.

Even though I think What’s in Store one of the strongest candidates for a single I decided against it because I already knew it would be the opening track of the album and I didn’t want to kick off the album with a track people had already heard. I wanted the album to start off with something brand new, with that upbeat energy the track has, and a song that sets people up for, well, what’s in store.

The remaining choice between Show Me Something Else and Start over Again wasn’t as easy because I think they both have intriguing elements and are catchy enough to stand as singles. Show Me Something Else has a guitar solo I’m really proud of and I wanted people to know the album was going to be guitar oriented. Start over Again has a dramatic chorus and a lot of angst, which is also an important ingredient in the album. In the end I felt Start over Again not only best captured the overall mood of the project, starting over again is what the album is. It’s a restart. It’s one of the many times in my life and career I’ve felt I had to take a few steps back in order to move forward. It’s me trying to navigate a way out of the abyss of 2020-2021.

Start-over-Again-Notebook_web

above, from my notebook on March 29, 2021

With the working title of “Chicago Bar Chords,” the second working title to include ‘Chicago,’ Start over Again started taking shape early in the project. My first audio note for the song is on March 28, 2021 where I have the chords and melody of the chorus, and by April 12 I had the lyrics worked out and had named the piece “Start over Again.” As I worked on the backing tracks I started to hear the angst and longing coming through in the chorus and my goal with the song was to set that up and deliver it as best I could.

From a songwriting standpoint this song has a bit of an odd structure in that there’s a prechorus that only appears once, before the second chorus (the section that starts with “it’s a waste to wait another day”). The bridge is in a more traditional position after the second chorus, which means chorus 2 is sandwiched between two sections that only appear once in the song, which is a little bit weird. And is it really a prechorus if it’s only in the song once? Are they really two bridges?

This deviation from the formula was one of the reasons I thought maybe the track wouldn’t be the right choice for a single. But in the end I felt the sections flowed so well that the exception to the songwriting “rules” wasn’t an issue. And the fact that the song so perfectly summed up why I was making this record—the hope, the doubt, the dread and fear of a restart—made it the perfect song to introduce The Green L.E.D.s new album to the world.

The Green L.E.D.s debut album releases Oct 28!

The date is set! The Green L.E.D.s debut album, my first non-comedy, all-music studio album ever, will be released Thursday, October 28, 2021 on all digital platforms! And you’re invited to the release party! I’ll be playing songs from the album and talking about the project on a live stream on my twitch channel and youtube at 8pm NYC time on Oct 28. Tune in!

Wondering what the album sounds like? The advance single “Start over Again” came out back in July and is available everywhere, and there’s even a way to get a second song from the album right now before it’s released!

If you pre-order the album on Apple Music you’ll get the opening track “What’s in Store” to download right away! You’ll get access to the full album on the 28th.

If you’re the Spotify type, follow The Green L.E.D.s and you’ll be notified when the album is available. And to give you an idea of where the album is coming from I put together a few playlists of my inspirations: So far I’ve posted 80s Arcade of Angst and Friday Night at the All-Ages Goth Club, more to come!

Find The Green L.E.D.s!

Leading up to the release I’ve also been doing some behind-the-scenes videos on tiktok and instagram. Dare I try to embed some here? Let’s do it!

The Odd Rock Comedy Hour Returns to Q.E.D.!!

The Odd Rock Comedy Hour is back!

After a loooong hiatus—thank you Covid-19—my comedy music variety show will be returning LIVE to the QED stage (or back yard, weather permitting) and I couldn’t be more excited!

I also couldn’t be more grateful to Kambri and Q.E.D. for the hard work and determination they put in to get through the absolute hardest year+ I’ve witnessed in my entertainment career. We all went a little crazy I think, and I hope you’re as ready as I am to experience live entertainment again!

Q.E.D. will be very safe: audience members and all performers and staff are required to be vaccinated and tickets will be sold through the Eventbrite service to facilitate contact tracing should there ever be an issue (get your advance tix for our return show here).

I’m putting the lineup together for the first show now, already confirmed is the very funny comedian Christina Walkinshaw, who was booked on our March 2020 show waaay back when.

A Project Full of “Real” Songs

There’s a weird and very annoying question people have asked me after shows. I’ll have just performed from 10-45 minutes—playing comedy songs of mine that are well-known, new, or somewhere in between, singing said songs and playing guitar—and people will ask “do you ever write any real songs?”

THEY’RE ALL REAL! I’m playing them! Can you hear them? The air molecules are vibrating and moving your eardrums! They’re real!

But I get it: they mean non-comedy songs. They don’t mean any offense by implying by contrast that comedy songs aren’t real They’re only unwittingly negating my entire life’s work!

Well post-pandemic life is gonna be a lot easier because I’ll be able to just say “yes” and point them to the new non-comedy album of 100% real songs I will be releasing this year under the name The Green L.E.D.s.

Why the name? To differentiate it from my comedy music stuff!

Don’t like it? Come on, it’s better than “Childish Gambino!”

I’ve been enjoying working on it and I’m really happy with the way the songs are shaping up. I’ve been inspired by early 80s post-punk and some Aughts rock but those were just the starting points and I’m going to wait until it’s done before I characterize it more. It‘s been hugely helpful for my mental state to have a creative outlet. Writing comedy during the pandemic has been really difficult for me because there were no live shows to test out the material, and with a global pandemic, a nationwide reckoning on systemic racism, and a dangerously contentious election year (that didn’t end at the election), I haven’t been super inspired to be funny. So what does a comedian/songwriter do when he doesn’t feel funny?

I guess he writes some “real” songs 😜

Look for the first single in July and the full album this fall!

Cover Tuesday 1-Year Anniversary Telethon!

To commemorate a full year of using stoopit covers to cope with the pandemic I’m putting together a ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY TELETHON EXTRAVGANZA on March 16th!

That’s right, an actual telethon! I’m going to be doing the biggest fun set of stoopit covers yet! And after 48 episodes and over 600 covers I’ll even do songs I’ve covered before! I’ll do songs I can’t believe I haven’t covered before! I will have special guests covering stoopit songs (hopefully)! And it will all be to raise money for Food Bank NYC, an organization that provides meals to those in need in New York.

I’ve set the ambitious goal of raising $500 and we will hit it even if I have to play all night! (Please don’t make me play all night!) Every dollar donated helps provide 5 meals to people struggling with food insecurity and we’re going to help Food Bank of NYC with the 80 million free meals they provide annually!

I’ll have a special campaign page set up through Food Bank NYC’s website so all donations will be handled by and go straight to them. We’ll C U Next/This(?) Tuesday!

Cover Tuesday 1-Year Anniversary Telethon!
Tuesday, March 16
Pre-show 7:30 pm NYC time (4:30 Pacific, 2330 UTC)
Showtime 8:15 pm NYC time (5:15 Pacific, 0015 UTC)
on Twitch!

Please donate if you are able, and join us for the live show on Tuesday, March 16, 2021 at 8:15 pm EST at twitch.tv/RobPRocks!

Cover Tuesday’s Greatest Hits Vol. 5!

Cover Tuesday’s Greatest Hits Vol. 5!

Watch If Bauhaus covered Get Into the Groove

Get Into The Groove

To sing Madonna’s Get Into the Groove I needed to lower the vocal an octave and somehow I ended up sounding more like Peter Murphy from Bauhaus, so I decided to lean into it. Enjoy Mads the Goth!

Neil Diamond’s “Heartlight”

Neil Diamond and Burt Bacharach walk into a movie theater to see E.T. The Extraterrestrial and they walk out thinking “we gotta write a song about that!” So they did and this is that.

Watch Heartlight by Neil Diamond
Watch Take This Job And Shove It!

Take This Job And Shove It!

This classic country song, originally sung by Johnny Paycheck, is a prime example of why you should never, ever take career advice from country music! On the upside it inspired a movie of the same name, the climax of which is Robert Hays telling his boss to, you guessed it, take his job and shove it!

Back In Time

Speaking of movies, we have this classic from Back to the Future! Because you can’t go back to the future unless you first go Back in Time!

Watch Back in Time by Huey Lewis AND the News!
Watch The Trucker Classic: “Convoy!”

Convoy!

Still speaking of movies, this song was so popular they made a movie out of it! And the movie starred a better country music songwriter who had nothing to do with the song! Kris Kristofferson played Rubber Duck in the movie based on this CW McCall (a pseudonym for Bill Fries) song; so, that’s weird.

Purple Rain

OK, so I guess every song in this Greatest Hits has something to do with a movie (Get Into the Groove was featured in Madonna’s screen debut Desperately Seeking Susan if you were wondering). But this one takes the purple cake because Purple Rain is the name of the song, album, AND movie! I even turned on the reverb for this one!

Watch Purple Rain
© Paravonian