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Author Topic: Carmen Sandiego Theme/Sean Altman Documentary  (Read 2345 times)

gsfan85

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Carmen Sandiego Theme/Sean Altman Documentary
« on: December 04, 2004, 12:00:52 AM »
Hey everyone,

I just saw one of the posts in the thread with all the game shows cues which had 2 versions of the Carmen Sandiego theme song so I figured I'd post this.

I'm actually working with Sean Altman (Rockapella member from 1986-1997) on a documentary about his current solo career and his life with Rockapella.  The documentary will be aired on E.C.S.U. TV-22 (local Connecticut TV channel), and released through www.seanaltman.com.

Through the documentary production, we will be interviewing Rockapella members Scott Leonard (1991-Present)-Blonde Guy on Carmen, Elliott Kerman (1986-2004-shorter brown haired guy on Carmen) and Jeff Thacher who's interview is already done (1993-Present-5th member who joined Carmen Sandiego during the last season).

From this project that I am producing, I now know a lot about Carmen Sandiego, the production of the show, and about Rockapella's music.

The 2nd theme posted, and the one that people are most un-familiar with, is from one of their albums released in 1995, during the last season of Carmen Sandiego.

Someone posted that in that version they heard "some sort of a drum."  Rockapella is Rockapella.  And it wouldn't be acapella if there were drums.  The drums you are hearing is Vocal Percussionist Jeff Thacher, who has been with the group since 1993, and was on Carmen Sandiego for some Music Video extras if there was a short show in 1994, and who permanantly joined the Carmen team in 1995.  I strongly recommend seeing the current Rockapella group.  Although there are only 2 members who were on Carmen Sandiego left in the group, the songs they do are amazing, and hearing Carmen Sandiego live is a blast.

If you have any questions about this documentary/Behind-The-Music type special I'm doing, or would like a copy, e-mail me at easternexpedition@yahoo.com

Adam

inturnaround

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Carmen Sandiego Theme/Sean Altman Documentary
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2004, 01:58:23 AM »
Interesting stuff. The first time I saw Rockapella was on an old Fox stand-up comedy show called "Comic Strip Live". They did their "Zombie Jamboree" song.  (The best known version I can recall was done by the Kingston Trio, but I think the song came from a extemporaneous songwriting contest...the Trio say as much in their intro)

Rockapella added their own verse, though, that mentioned the World Trade Center. I wonder how they perform it now.
Joe Coughlin     
Human

gsfan85

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Carmen Sandiego Theme/Sean Altman Documentary
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2004, 02:26:29 AM »
[quote name=\'inturnaround\' date=\'Dec 4 2004, 01:58 AM\']Interesting stuff. The first time I saw Rockapella was on an old Fox stand-up comedy show called "Comic Strip Live". They did their "Zombie Jamboree" song.  (The best known version I can recall was done by the Kingston Trio, but I think the song came from a extemporaneous songwriting contest...the Trio say as much in their intro)

Rockapella added their own verse, though, that mentioned the World Trade Center. I wonder how they perform it now.
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Hey there,

They still perform it the same way.  It's a little more staged now then it used to be, and remember the main singer of the song is no longer Sean Altman, it's Kevin Wright who took over as Tenor in 1997, however it's still good.  

A little ironic is that they stop the song in the middle to this little gag where they pretend to lose an eyeball.  They skip the "Times Square to the Statue of Liberty" line but they still sing the "High wire Zombie between the World Trades" line.  I think they feel if they take it out it will just look like something their trying to avoid.  

Adam

GS Warehouse

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Carmen Sandiego Theme/Sean Altman Documentary
« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2004, 11:55:06 AM »
[quote name=\'gsfan85\' date=\'Dec 4 2004, 12:00 AM\']... Jeff Thacher ... (1993-Present-5th member who joined Carmen Sandiego during the last season).
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If Jeff joined the group in 1993, where did the drum-like beats in the Carmen theme come from?

[quote name=\'gsfan85\' date=\'Dec 4 2004, 02:26 AM\']A little ironic is that they stop ["Zombie Jamboree"] in the middle to this little gag where they pretend to lose an eyeball.  They skip the "Times Square to the Statue of Liberty" line but they still sing the "High wire Zombie between the World Trades" line.  I think they feel if they take it out it will just look like something their trying to avoid.
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The ironic thing I recall about the song is they used to play a video of ZJ on three first-season episodes that ran short.  The last time or two those eps reran, the video was replaced by a sketch with host Greg Lee going into the audience after a (very) early taping and asking about foreign currency and giving away T-shirts.  My guess is, the song was removed from those broadcasts because of the presence of the D-word is the chorus ("...Well, I don't give a d---/'cause I'm stone dead already...").  This was a kids' show on PBS, you know.

Rockapella came to my hometown in February 2002 during what was Barry Carl's (the tall, ponytailed bass singer) last tour with the group.  I thought about going, but the weather talked me out of it. :-\
« Last Edit: December 04, 2004, 11:56:26 AM by GS Warehouse »

gsfan85

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Carmen Sandiego Theme/Sean Altman Documentary
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2004, 01:40:01 PM »
[quote name=\'GS Warehouse\' date=\'Dec 4 2004, 11:55 AM\']
[quote name=\'gsfan85\' date=\'Dec 4 2004, 12:00 AM\']... Jeff Thacher ... (1993-Present-5th member who joined Carmen Sandiego during the last season).
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If Jeff joined the group in 1993, where did the drum-like beats in the Carmen theme come from?

Rockapella always used drum-like sounds on their albums, even on the albums before Jeff joined the group.  Before he joined, during the recording of the album they would record themselves doing some mouth drum parts so it sounded like there was a beat.  However, they couldn't sing songs with mouth drums live, until Jeff came along.

[quote name=\'gsfan85\' date=\'Dec 4 2004, 02:26 AM\']A little ironic is that they stop ["Zombie Jamboree"] in the middle to this little gag where they pretend to lose an eyeball.  They skip the "Times Square to the Statue of Liberty" line but they still sing the "High wire Zombie between the World Trades" line.  I think they feel if they take it out it will just look like something their trying to avoid.
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The ironic thing I recall about the song is they used to play a video of ZJ on three first-season episodes that ran short.  The last time or two those eps reran, the video was replaced by a sketch with host Greg Lee going into the audience after a (very) early taping and asking about foreign currency and giving away T-shirts.  My guess is, the song was removed from those broadcasts because of the presence of the D-word is the chorus ("...Well, I don't give a d---/'cause I'm stone dead already...").  This was a kids' show on PBS, you know.

I've always wanted to see that video.  Was it shot in the Carmen studio?  We're going to be using footage from Carmen Sandiego for this documentary, I guess I'll see if Sean has it.  Maybe we'll throw a few clips in from it.