I had a lot of fun with this project. So much fun, in fact, that I found myself glaring at a couch covered in yellow scraps of paper when it was over.
It had been a big day. I’d finally released The Princess Bride song I’d been working on for weeks. It was my ship in a bottle, sailing the seas of social media, hoping to be picked up by someone who could give me the opportunity to make more. I missed it already.
For moments like this, I have an ideas jar, a large, glass container where I deposit the inklings that make me happy. When I finish a project, I sort through my ideas, find a smile, and start anew.
This time though, nothing was thrilling me. None of my ideas excited me as much as the one I had just finished working on. The next day, I was still feeling anxious when I spotted a lone, golden scrap I’d neglected to collect the night before. I picked it up, unfolded it, and smiled when I read the words: “PRINCESS BRIDE” scrawled in purple ink.
The idea for me to work on this project came from a friend who had read an article detailing Mr. Reiner’s difficulties finding a songwriter for the musical version of his film. My friend believed I could do the job. I expressed my enthusiasm, but confessed to her that I hadn’t seen “The Princess Bride” as a child. As an adult, I find it difficult to watch André The Giant in anything without seeing him as a 12 year-old kid headed to school in the back of Samuel Beckett’s pickup truck. It just breaks my heart to think that we lost him at 46. As such, I’d never been able to finish the film.
“Maybe that’s what your first song should be about!” She told me. Suddenly, I jumped at the challenge of responding to the smoke signals of Hollywood royalty. I went home, purchased the film, and started work.
Over the next few weeks, I learned that The Princess Bride isn’t only about the lines that people recite. It’s a story a father made up for his children while putting them to bed at night. It’s a story about an unbelievably evil man who conspires to start a war by forcibly marrying and murdering the most beautiful woman in the land. It’s a story about how love, family, and friendship can conquer such evil. It’s a story everyone should hear, sing, and remember.
As I worked, I became a fan of the film too. Now, I wanted to leave the theatre smiling. I developed an outline to tell the story musically. Call it fate or coincidence, but the first song to appear on my outline was indeed a duet between André the Giant’s character, Fezzik and Vizzini, memorably portrayed by Wallace Shawn. I loved every moment of writing this song. I would love to have the opportunity to write the next one on my outline, the next one, the next one, the next one, the next one, and so on until the story is told.
most sincerely,Read More »
“Did I tell you I’ve started working on a new album? It’s been a long long while since you’ve heard me say that. But I just said that! And I didn’t flinch.”Read More »
Alex Battles played a show in Newport last week and that was fantastic. He had the pleasure of running into his friend Milton there. Check out Milton’s music, he’s great: www.miltonmusic.com. Battles sang and sailed and strolled. Visit Newport and so can you.
There are some upcoming shows in New York this September that are going to be supremely enjoyable, and I’m gonna tell you about them.
Monday, September 8th Alex Battles plays Tammany Hall at 9 o’ clock in the East Village.
Saturday, September 13th Battles rocks the socks off Skinny Dennis in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. He starts playing at 4pm and goes till 6. There are very few better ways to spend a Saturday afternoon.
If you can make both shows, well then, you’ve had a good week. And a good week is wonderful thing. Come see Alex Battles — it’s a practically prescription for success! If you measure success in smiles. True, honest, heartfelt smiles.
See you there.
-Battles’ Bad Secretary
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I was pleased as punch today to see myself on the front page of the Staten Island Advance website! A link calling my song a “intimate”, “humorous”, and a “must listen” (!) leads readers to a write-up of “Amboy Road”, my new song about the South Shore of Staten Island. If you haven’t already, go here to read more about the story behind “Amboy Road.” Thanks again, Staten Islanders!
So happy to say Alex Battles & The Whisky Rebellion have a great show in store for Friday, August 8th at the Rod and Gun Club in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. This place is as small and hot as it is genuine and true. For Battles and the band it is always a superb treat to play for a few fantastic music fans all seated at a wooden picnic table on a sultry summer evening. There’s only one long table in the joint and it’s by far one of Battles’ all time favorite tables to play to. Should the oh-so-fun table be too full, enjoy the show from the couch in the balcony. Alex will look up at you and wink. It’s certain. Become a member of this legendary club for a night, membership includes a free beer and a front row seat to a hell of a swell show. You gotta love a place where all seats are front row seats.
See you there.
-Battles’ Bad Secretary
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What has Alex Battles been up to? Well, mostly he’s been working on a podcast. He’s very excited about it and can’t wait to share it with you, which he will do oh-so-soon! He talks about Elvis, reveals himself as an anglophile, and tells you about the video game drought of ’82. With a goal of ten thousand episodes he’s keeping himself busy. Stay tuned to alexbattles.com for the first (and all subsequent) podcast episodes.
There’s an Alex Battles and the Whisky Rebellion show coming up at the Rock Shop in Brooklyn on August 16th. It’s going to be a wild one. After Battles and the band play their hearts out for you, approach him to discuss when you want to be a featured guest on the podcast. He would really like that. No sarcasm. Seriously, he wants to know what you’re on about.
So long for now!
Battles’ Bad SecretaryRead More »
So pleased to be playing a special show at Pete’s with Kari on fiddle and Tina on bass. Expect an evening of acoustic sweet gripe watery sonic vibrations. See you Tuesday! – AlexRead More »
Greetings, friend. Thank you for stopping by the website! I’d like to extend an extra special thank you to those stopped by The Whisky Rebellion’s supporting turn opening for John Doe & His Band at The Bell House (above) and my solo show at Rockwood Music Hall (below). I’m happy to announce a couple of new shows happening this summer as I get ready to hit the road.
On July 6, 2014 I’ll be participating in a new music series at Blue Smoke in Battery Park City, New York. Sunday night diners at Blue Smoke will be treated to three sets (5pm-8pm) of my favorite songs. Melody Allegra Berger will be joining me on the fiddle for the evening.
On August 16, Alex Battles & The Whisky Rebellion will be making their Rock Shop debut, headlining an evening of music sponsored by the Gotham Holler and featuring Sean Kershaw & The New Jack Ramblers and Tatters & Rags. We are excited about what’s sure to be a rocking summer night.
Thanks for reading. I hope to see you real soon.
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