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Summer Fridays-new single-out today!

My new single “Summer Fridays” is out today! It’s a southern rock jam about trying to get out of town a little early on Friday but never quite being able to make a clean getaway. Roll the windows down and crank it up!

Or put your headphones on and listen while you’re stuck in a last-minute zoom with your team because one of the higher-ups wants a new presentation ready by Monday :-/

The track is available on Spotify, Apple Music (soon), bandcamp, and I made a lyric video for YouTube!

update June 27, 2022: added Apple Music link

And since I think Summer Fridays is the perfect song for a road trip playlist, I made one! If you’re hitting the road this summer give it a listen and you can rock out while you’re stuck in weekend traffic!

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server software was old, it was a pain to get the SSL certificate renewed smoothly, and everything about them felt out of date.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!

AS:R had debuted!

AS:R debut, May 18, 2022!

American Songbook: Redacted logo

The American Songbook: Redacted has finally hit the stage! The show last week at Caveat was a lot of fun and I’m really excited by how everything went, from the material to my performance to the crowd and the all the tech. Performing 11 new songs (with detailed intros and slides, no less) is a daunting task and something I would never consider in a regular standup set. But this show—an attempt at understanding American history and culture through music and humor—is near and dear to my heart and something I’ve been eager to try.

I want to give a huge thanks to everyone who came out the the show in NYC, it was on the later side on a Wednesday night in the middle of yet another Covid variant surge, so I know it wasn’t easy to show up in person. The team at Caveat was also top-notch, from front of house to the tech, everyone there was helpful, friendly, and damn good at their jobs. When I checked out the video of the live feed I was blown away by the quality and was so excited to realize that the people watching the live stream (thank you all so much for tuning in!) got such a great view of the show. If you’ve seen any of my Cover Tuesday DIY livestreams from home you’ll know that I know that tech is hard!

Now that the debut has has debuted I’m excited to develop the show further with performances, festivals, and more. I hope to do the show many more times here in New York, perhaps even an extended run somewhere. I’d also like to take it to select theaters and venues in other cities, and now that I have video of it to prove it actually exists, I’m going to start reaching out to places. If you have thoughts on a venue that could be a good fit let me know!  I’m also going to start recording studio versions of the songs for a companion album. Maybe I’ll release it as a live/studio double album! 

So many possibilities, and the possibilities feel even more real now that show #1 is in the books! Thank you to everyone who helped get it going!

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

2nd Annual Telethon will benefit Ukraine relief

Cover Tuesday 2-Year Anniversary Telethon!

The 2-year anniversary of Cover Tuesday is fast approaching and to commemorate the occasion I’m going to do another telethon! Last year I set the goal of raising $500 for Food Bank of NYC and we ended up with over $1,400! This year, because I’ll be playing my 1,000th cover in the show and because the need is great, I set the goal of raising $1,000 for Direct Relief, a charity that delivers medical supplies around the globe to those in need and have been especially active in sending medical supplies to Ukraine.

And because the need is immediate the donation link is live right now! To help keep track of the campaign I’m partnering with streamlabscharity, which is an offshoot of streamlabs, a company that makes plugins and helpful little widgets for us twitch streamers. They have a partnership with Direct Relief and I looked them up and they have a solid rep. The New York Times even recommended them as one of the charities to support to help Ukraine.

And there are premiums! A $10 donation gets you a digital download code for either The Green L.E.D.s debut album or my latest concert album Rob P. Rocks a Jazz Club. Donate $20 and get both!

So give now if you can and you’re impatient like me, or give during the telethon, when I’ll hopefully have a cute progress bar on screen to track the progress toward our goal.

And I haven’t forgotten about Food Bank of NYC! I set up a 2022 Cover Tuesday fundraising campaign with a modest goal of $250. I truly believe we can meet both goals and I’ll keep the Food Bank drive open throughout the year to support during future twitch streams.

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

The Green L.E.D.s new album is here!

It’s here! The debut album from my non-comedy music project The Green L.E.D.s is out! It’s available to download, stream, and there’s even a limited run of 50 signed and numbered CDs pressed by Vandalay Records! I’m really proud of this record and can’t wait for you to hear it.

The idea for the album came to me at the beginning of the year, in the depths of the pandemic’s winter wave just before the year anniversary of lockdown. I had been doing Cover Tuesday, my weekly live stream comedy show, for about 9 months and was really enjoying just playing music. I was having musical ideas of my own but with the state of the world as it was (and still is) I wasn’t super inspired to write comedy songs. Like a lot of people I was taking a step back to look at my career and life, and I started to write some of the things I was feeling.

Musically I wanted to explore and expand on a sound I had first experimented with for my friend Dan’s “Back in Time” compilation album, where he had people write 80s style pop songs. I really liked the way my song, I Can Feel It (Can You?) (which I reworked and remixed for this album) turned out; it had the mood I was going for, the angst in the lyrics, the sound that nailed it to certain place in my soul, and I wanted to see if I could write more songs like that.

I originally hoped to put together an 8-song EP with five or six originals and a couple of covers but as I started writing new ideas started pouring out and I ended up with ten originals and one cover, Into the Groove, originally by Madonna, which took on a new life when lowered an octave and gender swapped.

I worked intensely on this project for most of this year and it’s quite honestly what kept me sane during this ongoing pandemic and everything else that’s going on in the world. I would turn off the news, tune out the stress caused by a stalled comedy industry, and dive into recording, arranging, and writing this album. I looked forward to my walks through Prospect Park during which I’d listen to rough mixes to come up with arrangement ideas and jot mix notes.

Today, walking through the neighborhood I listened to the full album streaming directly from Spotify and it was an amazing feeling. I’m proud of the work I did, I’m really happy with the way the album sounds, and I’m relieved that I got the levels right so it sounds decent next to label-produced stuff with infinitely higher budgets. Like literally infinitely higher, since my budget was basically zero 😛

And now that it’s out I can’t wait for you all to hear it. As I’ve said my inspirations were early 80s post-punk and new wave mixed with some 21st Century rock revival, but I’m curious what you hear in there. Is it more 80s to you? More contemporary? 90s Alternative? Let me know (but please be kind)!

Here are all the places you can find the album:

Or heck, just stream it in one of these players

Bandcamp

Spotify

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!

New Single is Out!

It’s Heeeere!

The first song from my non-comedy music album project is out! Start Over Again is now available on all the streaming platforms! Here it is on Spotify! And Apple Music! It’s even on YouTube and something called Amazon!

My inspiration for the project is early 80s post-punk, like Echo & the Bunneymen, Psychedelic Furs and others, mixed with some early 2000s rock revival, and I think this first track reflects more of the post-punk vibe. The full album will be released this fall and I’m planning on it having 10 originals and one cover (which I think will be a really fun surprise).

It took a while to decide which song would be the advance single and I think this one captures the mood and attitude of the album with a solid arrangement and a (hopefully) memorable hook. And the title “Start over Again” and the theme of starting over is the perfect subject for a song introducing a project that’s a pretty big departure from what I usually do.

“Why the departure?” you may ask? In a word: 2020. The pandemic shut down all of my comedy performances, the social upheaval and contentious election cycle really kept me out of the mindset of doing my usual brand of intelligently silly comedy, and the only thing that kept me going creatively was music. My weekly cover show Cover Tuesday was a welcome escape from everything that was going on, and learning and playing 12-14 new songs a week sharpened my ear so much that when I decided to do this project I was off and running at unexpectedly fast clip.

You can listen to the new track right in this nifty embedded player!

I really like it and I hope you do too, and I can’t wait for you to hear the rest of the album!

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!

New EP Blindsight 2020 Out now!

Blindsight 2020 Cover

Screen cap of Blindsight 2020 on Apple MusicI’m really excited to announce that my new EP Blindsight 2020 is out right now! It’s a 5-song collection of studio tracks that I recorded over the last few years and it features a lot of songwriting and production that I’m really proud of.

In fact, that’s why I decided to release the EP in the first place. I was really happy with my arrangements on the songs “I’m Just Here for the Swag” and “Somewhere Else,” the pandemic-inspired Beach Boys sendup of “Catching Rays on the Fire Escape” captured 2020 really well, and I really like of “Booze Women, and Movies” and “I’m as Broke as Kansas” both for what they say and how they say it.

It’s my first studio release since A/B came out just over 4 years ago, in November 2016. In 2018 I recorded the live concert album Rob P. Rocks a Jazz Club which had a lot of new songs on it, but since I was focusing on getting them in shape for the live album I didn’t do as much studio recording. My goal for 2021 is to get back in the studio so I wanted to motivate myself to push ahead with new music and not “save” these favorite songs for a later release. Without these gems to fall back on I’m hoping to force myself to innovate!

Or maybe realize the pandemic has killed my artistic drive. We’ll see! [shrugging emoji]

Pando Update

It’s been a while since I’ve posted an update, mostly because there hasn’t been much to update you on. Things have been slow with all live shows in NYC still shut down, no cruise gigs to promote or report back on, and travel still being something we non-essential people really shouldn’t be doing so even if I did want to accept a show in a place where shows were showing. I’m still doing Cover Tuesdays every Tuesday at 8:15 pm NYC time, but hopefully you already knew about that.

The news about effective Covid-19 vaccines has been encouraging but unless something is done to support live music and comedy venues there won’t be many shows for the vaccinated crowds to attend. Two notable comedy venues in NYC have already closed permanently during the pandemic: The Creek & The Cave and the UCB Theater. Without help more may follow. (If you’d like to help independent venues or want to know more about the issue, check out Save Our Stages and the National Independent Venue Association. And here’s an article from September specifically about the frustrations comedy clubs in NY are facing.

These eight-plus months since the shutdowns began has been the longest I’ve gone without doing regular live performances. I’d love to make a prediction about what the future will be but would they be predictions or wishful thinking? I’d like to think that I will get back to performing regularly, hosting a show here in NYC, performing at clubs and theaters throughout the country, doing some shows in other countries like I have in the past, and yes, even getting back on a cruise ship. With Covid numbers spiking before the arrival of any kind of vaccine, all of those wished for things feel at best six to eight months away.

In the meantime there is still music, which is more easily shared in the absence of live venues. Cover Tuesdays have been fun, and I will be releasing a five song studio EP before the end of the year. It will contain some of my favorite songs from the past couple of years, from the early pandemic “Catching Rays on the Fire Escape” to the song “Somewhere Else” featured in the video I did with Victor Varnado. When I get the official release date I’ll make the official announcement, hopefully mid-December!

I hope you’re faring well wherever you are in the world. Stay safe and be excellent to each other!

Cover Tuesday Rocks All Summer Long (but I’m not playing that Kid Rock song)

Cover Tuesdays will be going strong throughout Pandemic Summer 2020! Every Tuesday at 8:15 pm NYC time (5:15 Pacific, 15 minutes after midnight GMT) I’ll be playing a fun set of stoopit covers live on my twitch channel! You can watch it on any twitch app or in the handy window below! Send in requests and suggestions via my twitter, instagram, or other ways if you know where to find me. Join us, it’s super fun!

© Paravonian