Tag Archives: Robot 6

Discovered Gems: Kliph Nesteroff

As you can see from these two Robot 6 posts, I had a great time at this past weekend’s HeroesCon. Part of why I have loved HeroesCon the past two years is the presence of Evan Dorkin.

This year, at a panel discussing comedy, Dorkin mentioned Kliph Nesteroff, a show business historian with a few websites (including Classic Television Showbiz) . When Dorkin mentioned that Nesteroff posts obscure videos that would have me staying on the website way too long, I doubted him.

Then I ran across this 1958 conversation between Hy Gardner and Steve Allen, which includes a link to a Allen op-ed Village Voice piece . Yes, Dorkin is right,  I will be spending a lot of time reading up

Heads Up Display on Self-Titled Album

Heads Up Display
Heads Up Display

In mid-September 2010, Heads Up Display released it’s self-titled album. The band, which consists of Josh Davis Dillard (Trumpet, Guitar), Kevin Colden (Drums) and Steve Pellegrino (Bass), was kind enough to discuss their music with me. It marks the second time I’ve talked to Kevin about the band, the first time being in this Robot 6 interview in May. Also, congrats to Kevin and Miss Lasko-Gross on the November 24th birth of Charles Lasko Colden.

Tim O’Shea: What values/benefits do each of you think the record’s producer “General” George Fullan added to the project?

Josh: George has a very strong working knowledge of production from an engineering standpoint. We love working with him because he understands working in sounds similar to the records that we all love. Being the final band that recorded at his now closed General Studios was a big deal for us.

Kevin: George has a long and diverse history as a producer and engineer and has the kind of adaptability that our songs need. I think his most important contribution to the current LP is retaining the melodies and harmonics of the songs while not sacrificing the intensity of the playing. Our live show is pretty intense, and that’s not an easy thing to capture on a record, but we’ve come as close as ever with this album.

Steve: George is kind of my production mentor, I interned for him right out of college. He knows how to make bands work to get what he wants and what they want. Instead of cutting a song together from multiple takes he pushes you until you get the right one. Also he knows how to make really heavy records and has tons of crazy stories!

Continue reading Heads Up Display on Self-Titled Album

Reviews of Astro City Special: Silver Agent, I Am An Avenger, and Hawkeye & Mockingbird

Astro City Special: Silver Agent 2

Normally my comic reviews run as part of Robot 6’s weekly What Are You Reading? feature, but family events (and falling asleep on the sofa) caused me to have to scramble this past weekend and only submit part of my reviews. So, this week, I have opted to run the remainder of my reviews at my own blog.

First up, after years of wanting to know the full story of the fate of Astro City’s Silver Agent, readers finally got that closure last week in the final installment of the two-issue Astro City Special: Silver Agent. Busiek’s fortunate in that addition to possessing an affinity for time travel stories, Busiek has the understanding to write such stories effectively. Too often time travel in comics is a muddled mess, not so here. So much of the appeal of Astro City’s success is the sense of community and family that permeates some of the series best stories. In this final installment of the tale, Busiek gives us an incredible couple of moments with Alan Craig/Silver Agent and his nephew Thomas. It’s a bittersweet and touching scene that goes to the heart of why Busiek remains one of my favorite writers in comics.

I was pleased to get a double-shot of writer Jim McCann this week. In the first instance, McCann and artist Chris Samnee teamed up for a short story in the I Am An Avenger five-part anthology miniseries. I’ve not been a faithful reader of The Young Avengers over the years, so I was pleasantly surprised to find how entertained I was by this short story. I’ll admit that part of the reasons this story clicked with me is that McCann tied the old Avengers guard with the present day, utilizing Clint Barton/Hawkeye as a common ground.

My other McCann fix involved Hawkeye & Mockingbird 4. The characters have been going through some rough times in recent issue, not that the challenges evaporated with this issue. That being said, McCann is able to inject his sense of humor with the dialogue in this issue. McCann’s approach to the modern day version of Marvel superheroes imbues it with a fun vibe that reminds me of 1970s/1980s comics writer, David Michelinie. In addition to the character banter, I was pleasantly thrown by the Phantom Rider curveballs that appear in the final pages of this issue.

No Interviews This Week, with Apologies

Unfortunately, as things timed out over the past several weeks I have exhausted my interview backlog more quickly than expected. Poor planning and timing on my part, I’ll fully concede. I apologize.

In the interim, please feel free to enjoy these interviews I recently did for Robot 6 with Jim OttavianiMichael DowersJames Kochalka, Jim Rugg and Ho Che Anderson.

Interviews Delayed

Most of the time I have an inventory of interviews to run, but in recent weeks, I’ve been making it week to week. This past week, it just did not time out well. I hope to get back on schedule this week, but can make no promises. In the good news department, I was able to score a quick mini-interview that I will be posting later today.

Over at Robot 6, last week I had the pleasure of taking part in one of the best interviews I’ve gotten to do–with Joe the Barbarian artist Sean Murphy. Murphy gets the credit for the interview’s greatness.

Caryn A. Tate on Red Plains

Caryn A. Tate's Red Plains
Caryn A. Tate's Red Plains

Since I joined Robot 6 earlier this year, my webcomics and overall sequential art interviews have run there, for the most part, rather than here. But given that Red Plains writer Caryn A. Tate was already interviewed by fellow great Robot Sixer Brigid Alverson recently (go read it, it’s a great interview [thanks to Alverson’s questions and Tate’s answers] as is this one [again, thanks to Tate’s answers]), I opted to give Tate a slot here at my home site to discuss her work at Top Shelf 2.0, Top Shelf’s online comics program. I’m always happy to support a Top Shelf creator, partially as I often say, because I consider the publisher to be my home team (both the publisher and myself are Georgia-based). As detailed in a recent Top Shelf press release: “Written by Red Plains series creator Caryn A. Tate and featuring beautifully and brutally rendered art by Larry Watts, ‘A Nice Place to Raise Your Kids Up’ focuses on the violence, corruption, and crime of the Old West that is seldom deeply explored. While other towns may have tried it, can guns really be outlawed in a place like Red Plains? Sheriff Doles, the recently appointed lawman in Red Plains, may find himself out of a job–if he doesn’t lose his life first. As a new family comes to Red Plains, meet the Escovido clan and find out what role to they have to play in all of this. Who will vie for the favor of the vivacious Lupe, and who will be scarred in the attempt? How many people will be calling on Doc DeGraff–and how many more on the undertaker?” My thanks to Tate for her time. Be sure to go back and visit Top Shelf 2.0 site frequently, as there will be new Red Plains chapters every two weeks.

Tim O’Shea: What attracts you to telling this tale in particular–why as a comic, as opposed to prose?

Caryn A. Tate: The tale of Red Plains is one that’s really dear to me. I grew up and lived in the West on working ranches and farms, being around Western people, and there’s a distinct beauty to the land, its lifestyles, its people. I’ve been passionate about telling our stories for a long time, and Red Plains is the culmination of all of that.

I love comics, and one of the reasons I think the medium is so satisfying as a creator is because the final result manifests faster than prose work. And I’m a very visual writer – I have a visual art background – so I tend to see things very clearly and I have a desire to see that on the page. But, that said, I do love prose too, so who knows?

Continue reading Caryn A. Tate on Red Plains

Other Interviews to Consider

Robot 6
Robot 6

I’ll be posting another interview later this evening, but it looks like I am fast approaching the end of my ability to post two interviews a week .

I may be able to post two interviews next week, but if not I hope to start doing some non-interview posts of interest. I am, as always, open to suggestions.

The past few weeks have been busy in terms of interviews at Robot 6 as well. In case you missed any, here are links to several of the pieces:

If that’s not enough here’s a link to all my Robot 6 interviews or a link to all my interviews here at Talking with Tim.