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Thom Dunn is a Boston-based writer, musician, homebrewer, and new media artist. He enjoys Oxford commas, metaphysics, and romantic clichés (especially when they involve whiskey), and he firmly believes that Journey's "Don't Stop Believing" is the single greatest atrocity committed against mankind. He is a graduate of Clarion Writer's Workshop at UCSD ('13) & Emerson College ('08).

Alejandro & the Fame at the Cantab Lounge!

That's right folks, everyone's favorite all-male hard rock Lady Gaga (+ other female pop artists) cover band returns to Boston — this Thursday night at the Cantab Lounge in Cambridge! Be there, or be having less fun than the rest of us.

And here's a little taste of the tunes...

The Backyard Committee at the Huntington

Last night, I had the pleasure of joining my friends in The Backyard Committee for a few songs on lap steel guitar at one of our 35 Below parties at the Huntington. I've played a shows with them before, mostly on keyboards, and this was a fun, different experiment, as I don't really get to play lap steel guitar out in front of people very often (it's also a very difficult instrument to play by yourself). The band is essentially Mike Sembos, and whatever musicians he finds to accompany him. Even if I hadn't been friends with Mike for 12 or so years now, I'd still love this band, because Mike is an utterly fantastic songwriter. So they're always a blast to play with, and I'm hoping to do it again pretty soon. Did I mention that you can download both of their albums for free on their website?

...also there was Duck Hunt:

Upcoming Stuff & Events & Things (Nov. '13)

Hello, website! Long time, no update! I swear that one of these days I am going to actually train myself to just make brief updates here as they happen, instead of these info dumps. ANYWAY. I've got some stuff going on, because of course I do. It goes like this:

Meanwhile, in addition to my normal duties at Five By Five Hundred, I have a review of Eric Smith's new book The Geek's Guide To Dating on Tor.com, and some coverage of SpeakEasy Stage Company's world premiere production of Make Up Your Mind, a brand new play by Kurt Vonnegut even though he's dead.

And then, ya know, the youge (like, the slang/shortened word for "usual," but spelled phonetically? Is that right?): Workin', writin', so on and so forth. Tonight at the Huntington we start performances for The Cocktail Hour by A.R. Gurney, which is directed by Maria Aitken, a favorite of ours at the theatre. Here's a little video I made for that:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xa_ckErMzAY]

I also wrote some fun stuff about ghost stories at the theatre on the Huntington's blog which is still worth reading even though it's after Halloween, as well as two pieces of flash fiction in this "Quantum Shorts" competition that you can go read and vote for so I can win some monies: I Kill Dead People and Not Dead Yet (which was the basis for my story in Grayhaven Comics' Fifth Dimension anthology).

Wow that's a whole lot of dead stuff. In that case, I should end this on a happy note, which is that Maurissa Tancharoen both listened to and enjoyed my song "I'll Fight A Whedon For You"; unfortunately, her husband Jed was less than impressed.

So now I've pissed one Whedon and armwrestled another, which only leaves Zak for me still to cross. But overall I think that means that I've successfully become a Whedonverse villain?

Holy crap, I'll be 28 in 2 weeks.

Just Dance, Mother&$%#ers!

In case you missed out on seeing Boston's premiere all-male hard rock Lady Gaga cover band at the Midway this past weekend, you're in luck: we got the whole thing on tape! Well, technically on built-on digital flash hardrive but, you know, whatever. The audio quality is a little rough (because isn't it always?), but you get the gist. You can watch a playlist of the full set over on YouTube, but here are a few gems from the night: "You & I"

"Bad Romance" 

Plus we had a few surprises this time in the form of non-Gaga female pop artists (because frankly, Gaga's catalog is kind of limited, and we needed new material). Like this:

New Lady Gaga Song!

In anticipation of this Saturday's Alejandro & the Fame show at the Midway Cafe in JP, we put together another quick demo of one of our songs. So, sorry, this isn't a new Lady Gaga song, but rather a better version of an already existing Lady Gaga song, done by us. This isn't the final mix or master, but it's a good idea of how we rock (and if you really feel like bringing the mosh and punching someone in the face, fast forward about 3 minutes for the breakdown 'cause it's awesome)


Music To Soothe Your Jangled Innards

Quick update about a few events I've got coming up. One, I'll doing a show THIS Friday, December 14 at the All Asia in Central Square, Cambridge with my / Boston's premiere all-male hard rock Lady Gaga cover band Alejandro and the Fame. These shows are always a blast for everyone involved, and are almost always guaranteed to sell out, so make you get there (lookin' at you, People On The Other Side Of The River Who Missed Our Last Show Because It Was Allllllll The Way In JP Oh BooHoo). Admission is a scant $6, and we hit the stage around 10:30pm! I'm also excited to announce that I'll be performing a short set for MORTIFIED at Oberon on Saturday, December 22. For those who haven't heard of this, MORTIFIED is a night of performance in which real-live grown adult humans read horribly horribly embarrassing things from their high school journals / AIM transcripts / etc, and hilarity ensues. And so, during my set, you'll be treated to some particularly painful gems that I dugout from my high school and middle school songwriting notebooks. Ever wonder what kind of angsty tunes I wrote when I was 14 (including "Dot of my 'I'" and instant never-classic "Fuck You Hotchkiss Lane")? Here's your only chance to hear them live! More information to come when I got it.

And finally, I was asked to write up a few scripts for the 2nd Annual Boston One-Minute Play Festival at the Boston Playwrights Theatre, January 5-7. I believe the evening as a whole contains about 100 one-minute plays (yes, really, but c'mon, that's barely an hour and a half!), so I'm sure there's going to be some great variety. And if you don't like a play, well, just wait one minute! I will say that writing a play, complete with a status quo, conflict, rising action,and denouement is remarkably more difficult than you might expect it to be, but I'm pretty pleased with what I came up with (and I should be blogging a bit more about it soon over at their website).

That's all for now, folks! See you Friday!

Too Busy

First of all, thanks to everyone who came to our Alejandro & the Fame show this past Saturday. We completely sold out the venue, which is always a cool feeling*, plus Shaymus Moynihan and the gang at the Midway treated us with some truly fantastic hospitality while we were there. (Read: free drinks) Anyway, point is: it's Monday, and after a hard day of writing, I've got a new piece up at Five By Five Hundred about time. We could all use more free time, yeah? And yet, somehow, no one blames the government. Maybe they're taking all of our free time, hrmmm? Even though it's supposed to be free?

Yes, I know, that sounds ridiculous. But it made for a fun little flash fiction sketch.

"FREE TIME" at FiveByFiveHundred.com

*Although, at the same time, it was kind of depressing, because apparently people come out in droves to see 5 guys shredding their way through Lady Gaga songs, but no one cares about original music. But I digress.

This Saturday — Alejandro & The Fame In JP!

Boston's premiere all-male Lady Gaga cover band plays the Midway Cafe in JP! Doors at 8pm! Be there! I can literally walk my equipment over to the club from my house! Wooohoo!

Oh yeah, and here's the Facebook event. Whoops. Sorry, I got excited.

And remember: just dance, motherfuckers

No Time For Love, Doctor Jones

And so begins the madness. First, I'll be performing tonight at Mortified Boston, thanks to the fantastic Ms Lisa McColgan (a co-worker over at the Huntington, as well as a fellow writer on Five By Five Hundred and possibly the world's biggest zombie enthusiast). I'll be singing a hilariously embarrassing song that I originally wrote in high school, so if you want to see me get up and stage and humiliate myself, well, that's the place to be. On a less romantic note, this week's Five By Five Hundred entry recalls an encounter with one of my favorite homeless people on the entire planet (yes, I have more than one favorite homeless person). Singing the praises of a confessed former-gang-banger might not seem like the most topical choice for a Valentines Day post, but, well, in light of recent events *cough*Chris Brown*cough*, it makes some form of sense in my warped mind.

"Joe" on FiveByFiveHundred.com

Cosmic Banditos! (-itos)(-itos)(-itos)

This weekend, I had the pleasure of accompanying Cosmic Banditos on their first gig in Baltimore, Maryland. I filled in on Woodrow and lap steel for a set at the annual Music4Change concert. Here's some video (more after the break) [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hRGWssnIdbk]

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UjZxpVI8KTg]

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OwE-XiN3UYE]

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FOIlFYzeKMk]

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3vbrKYkE7mA]

Da-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-BAT-BOY!

For the next 10 days, you can find me in the pit (well, okay, technically balcony, but it's still called the pit) playing guitar for MetroStage Company's production of BAT BOY! The Musical, directed by the lovely and quite talented Miss M. Bevin O'Gara. Here are the performance dates, for those of you who are interested:

  

  • Friday, June 3 at 8pm
  • Saturday, June 4 at 8pm
  • Sunday, June 5 at 2pm
  • Thursday, June 9 at 7:30pm
  • Friday, June 10 at 8pm
  • Saturday, June 11 at 8pm

Performances take place at the Cambridge Family YMCA Theatre in Central Square, Cambridge.

And the synopsis (in case you're somehow unaware of the "Bat Boy" trend that once ruled The Weekly World News):

Based on a story in The Weekly World News, BAT BOY: THE MUSICAL is a musical comedy/horror show about a half boy/half bat creature who is discovered in a cave near Hope Falls, West Virginia. For lack of a better solution, the local sheriff brings Bat Boy to the home of the town veterinarian, Dr. Parker, where he is eventually accepted as a member of the family and taught to act like a "normal" boy by the veterinarian's wife, Meredith, and teenage daughter, Shelley. Bat Boy is happy with his new life, but when he naively tries to fit in with the narrow-minded people of Hope Falls, they turn on him, prodded by the machinations of Dr. Parker, who secretly despises Bat Boy. Shelley and Bat Boy, who have fallen in love, run away together from the ignorant townfolk and have a blissful coupling in the woods, but their happiness is shattered when Meredith arrives and reveals a secret. Soon the entire town arrives and hears the shocking story of Bat Boy's unholy origin.

Alejandro and the Fame: Live In Concert

For those who missed (or those who simply want to relive it), here's the complete (minus the talky parts) Alejandro & the Fame on the Day Before the Rapture. It was pretty epic [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nz9Z5AOnGBA&w=480&h=303]

Read More

Alejandro & the Harbingers of the Apocalypse

Friday night was the first performance of my all-male Lady Gaga cover band, Alejandro & the Fame. In light of the then-impending rapture, we changed our name to Alejandro & the Harbingers of the Apocalypse. We have since returned to the Fame. Audio/video to come, but for now, here's some pictures to tide you over: Alejandro & the Fame, Boston's premiere all-male Lady Gaga cover band, at the Huntington Theatre Company's 35 Below party

Yes, I'm wearing leopard print leggings and jean shorts. No, I do not own the leopard print leggings. Yes, I did make my own jean shorts.

Photos by Justin Seward

Writing, Writing Everywhere, and Not a Drop To Read

I have to apologize for the radio silence here at ThomDunn.net over the last few weeks. Layne Anderson, a close friend and former roommate of mine, passed away unexpectedly on April 7th, and as much as I've kept up with everything (well, almost everything), time has been rather a blur. I've chronicled the situation as impersonally as possible over at FiveByFiveHundred.com in two posts — Shark Grief, about my own grieving process, and iWake, which as entirely fictional account of a some inappropriate gallows humor inspired by the situation of which Layne would have most certainly approved. Meanwhile, this week's entry steps away from the morbidity and explores the quantum mechanics of one night stands as interpreted through Bell's Theorem, using the Shrödinger's Cat experiment as a proof. Hopefully, that sounds ridiculous (and ridiculously intriguing) enough for you to check out Shrödinger's Cat Call, also over at FiveByFiveHundred.com.

Also in the last two weeks, we've officially opened Sons of the Prophet at the Huntington, which is then moving to the Roundabout Theatre Company Off-Broadway in the Fall. Plus, I did some filming for Art & Design of the 20th & 21st Centuries and the Boston Print Fair, did a small reading of my new play, True Believers (which is set at a Comic Book Convention and features a cameo by the Cyborg Head of Stan Lee, among other things), and started rehearsals and arrangements for my (wait for it) all-male hard rock Lady Gaga tribute band, Alejandro & the Fame, which is going to be every bit as ridiculous as it sounds. Come check us out on May 20th at the afterparty for Propeller Theatre Company's all-male production of Shakespeare's The Comedy of Errors at the Huntington's B.U. Theatre.

Woo. Okay. I think that's it. Tune in next week for your regularly scheduled programming.

The Backyard Committee at Cafe Nine

Thanks to everyone who came out to see The Backyard Committee at Cafe Nine in New Haven last night (especially my Dad, even though he fell asleep before we went on). I felt a lot more comfortable with the songs this time around, so I think it went pretty well (and if the Canadian guy who was dancing is any reliable indication, I'm right). The Fatal Flaw from Boston (literally, around the corner from me) also played, so thanks to them for coming down. Joel Reader is a great guy, and if you asked 16-year-old-Thom if he'd be headlining a show over Joel from the Mr. T Experience, he would totally freak (25-year-old-Thom, meanwhile, has a much more well-adjusted worldview, at least comparatively)