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Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Margaret Cho records with Ben Lee, Tegan and Sara and more

“I want to create a new genre of music that is hilarious but also seriously good, so I turned to some of my music heroes to help me out,” says Margaret Cho in reference to her forthcoming album Cho-Dependent. “I have wanted to make an album like this forever. I love comedy music!”

The lyrics on Cho Dependent, which tackle issues of sex, drugs, rock & roll – and lice, may be laugh-inducing, but Cho has made no compromises when it comes to the quality of the songwriting and production. After “My Puss,” a hilarious rap parody Cho recorded impromptu-style with friends, became a surprise YouTube hit, Cho began to integrate more comedy music into her live stand-up shows. With Cho Dependent, her first comedy music album, Cho got a chance to hone her craft with some of the top names in the business.

“Over the years of being an intense music geek I got to meet a lot of my heroes and I tricked them all into writing songs with me,” explains Cho. “Most comics want to be rock stars, and most rock stars want to be comics, so it was an easy exchange.”

“There are so many amazing people I got to work with on this album,” Cho continues, “Jon Brion, Fiona Apple, Tegan and Sara, Andrew Bird, Ani DiFranco, Garrison Starr, Meghan Toohey, Brendan Benson, Rachael Yamagata, Carl Newman, Grant Lee Phillips, Patty Griffin, Ben Lee, Kevin Barnes -- I still have to pinch myself!”

Conversely, the many collaborators on Cho Dependent seem to be equally excited about working with Cho. In a blog published on The Huffington Post, Australian indie-pop artist Ben Lee, said that working with her was “one of the most surprising and unexpected turns” in his career.

“When I heard Margaret was making her own music last year, I reached out to her and said I'd love to be involved,” reveals Lee, who co-wrote and produced several songs on the album. “The process of working with Margaret has been a complete revelation and joy for me. She started learning guitar at age 40 after seeing Madonna play guitar and thinking, ‘If that bitch can do it, it can't be that hard.’ It's this punk-rock enthusiasm that has informed every step of the writing and recording process.”

Canadian folk-rock duo Tegan and Sara, also blogged about their experiences recording with the taboo-busting funnywoman, whom they called “outrageously talented and funny.” Their Cho Dependent track, “Intervention,” was recorded over two days in Vancouver with producer Howard Redekopp, who’d just finished co-producing the girl’s sixth studio album, Sainthood.

“Imagine 10 hours of laughing, singing, eating, laughing, talking, eating and laughing and you might have a bit of a clearer picture of what our two days and nights were like,” writes T&S’s Tegan Quin. “The song itself turned out amazing. Margaret has a great voice and was so easy to work with. Definitely a budding musician!”

Ultimately Cho hopes to raise the bar for the genre as a whole – and get a little recognition for her contribution to the cause. Her motivations for this latter goal however are naturally as subversive as her humor. “I want to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and on Elvis Costello's Spectacle so I can talk all serious about my songwriting ‘process’ -- which is basically trying to figure out what rhymes with ‘dick.’”

***

Many of the songs on Cho Dependent will have a video directed by YouTube sensation Liam Kyle Sullivan. Cho and Sullivan previously collaborated on Cho’s 2008 Beautiful tour and on several online videos. Sullivan is best known for “Shoes,” a comedy music video and YouTube record-breaker, which has garnered over 34 million views.

To support the release of the album, Cho will be heading out on the road with her guitar in hand for a major nationwide US tour, which will kick off on August 26 and run thru December 12. The Cho Dependent shows will be a special evening of brand new stand up comedy, mixed with a few live performances of Cho’s comedy songs. Most dates will go on sale June 11. Check www.margaretcho.com for further info and for special VIP ticket packages.

The second season of Cho's hit Lifetime TV series Drop Dead Diva debuts June 6. When the show debuted in July/Aug 2009, it was the highest rated first season of an original Lifetime series since Army Wives in 2007, and the new season promises even more out of this world fun.
 
now take a look at this tracklist:
1. Intervention(co-written with & featuring Tegan & Sara)
2. Calling in Stoned (co-written with Ben Lee / featuring Ben Lee & Tommy Chong)
3. Your Dick (co-written with AC Newman / featuring Ben Lee)
4. Baby I’m With The Band (co-written with & featuring Brendan Benson)
5. Hey Big Dog (co-written with Patty Griffin / featuring Ben Lee & Fiona Apple)
6. I'm Sorry (co-written with & featuring Andrew Bird)
7. Lice (co-written with & featuring Ben Lee)
8. Enemies (co-written with & featuring Jon Brion)
9. Asian Adjacent (co-written with & featuring Grant Lee Phillips)
10. Gimme Your Seed (co-written with & featuring Garrison Starr)
11. Eat Shit and Die (co-written with & featuring Grant Lee Phillips)
12. Captain Cameltoe (co-written with & featuring Ani DiFranco)
13. My Puss (co-written with Diana Yanez & Kurt Hall / parody of Mickey Avalon & Dirt Nasty song)
Hidden Track (on CD/Digital only): Lesbian Escalation (co-written with & featuring Rachael Yamagata)

here's the wrap from Century Media-
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