Possibly the most inoffensive act on Onus Records has to be The Sunnyslope Strings, the label’s version of post millennium muzak, or as label honcho Tommy Globbit likes to look at it “M…
Possibly the most inoffensive act on Onus Records has to be The Sunnyslope Strings, the label’s version of post millennium muzak, or as label honcho Tommy Globbit likes to look at it, “MFSB meets Mantovani.” Their most recent release, posted on the label’s Onusrecords.Bandcamp.com site is “Three Minute Vacation,” a condensed travelogue of tropical and urban sounds that lasts at precisely three minutes. No controversy there. Nobody making waves, as it were.
But apparently some logophobics (people with an abnormal fear or dislike of words or letterheads) who have developed a fear of the Screen Gems closing logo, other wise knows as “The S From Hell”) claim that The Sunnyslope Strings and producer Don Glasser have conspired to stir up unrest by sampling the mid 1960’s ID music on the fade of the tag of the new song, a fact that is driven home by the letter “S” appearing on the “Three Minute Vacation” cyber sleeve.“Anyone who has spent any time in Sunnyslope knows “S” Mountain. It’s Sunnyslope Mountain. And we’re The Sunnyslope Strings. That’s what the S is for. There’s no satanic re-purposing of that letter or any sampling from Screen Gems going on,” insists Glasser, who admits feeling anxiety after seeing the Screen Gems logo but only attributes it to “I Dream of Jeannie” reruns being over.
Glasser is also adamant that there is no sampling at all on any Sunnyslope Strings tracks but one reed player in the group who has since been let go spilled the beans before Glasser tried could buy his silence with a Hot Pockets Cheeseburger With Crispy Buttery Seasoned Crust, for those of you who collect that sort of information.
“Look, we didn’t record an ocean in the studio. Don ripped that off of a Relaxings Sounds of the Sea CD his analyst makes him listen to for calming purposes,” the unnamed sideman said. “There’s samples all over this latest track. He even had bits of the Seinfeld theme buried underneath the rhythm section before taking it out completely.All part of his Wall of Sound but it’s more like his Shag Carpet of Sound if you ask me. Lots of stuff you don’t below the surface that you don’t notice until it hurts you. But that’s no French horn at the end of ‘Three Minute Vacation.’. It’s the Screen Gems theme. Clear as day.”
We ask you to check out the song for yourself at onusrecords.bandcamp.com and compare it with the track below.
When Tommy Globbit set out to realize his dream of establishing a Hitsville USA here in Sunnyslope, AZ with Onus Records, it was imperative that he find a house band the likes of Motown’s Funk Brothers, which was not easy to do in 1962, let alone 2014. And it was especially challenging to find that kind of talent in Sunnyslope, AZ, most would have you think!
“A lot of people think this neighborhood doesn’t have any soul, but these musicians have plenty of heart and guts so they’re operating in the same general area,” says Globbit who still repeats the story he’s told since the beginning that he found these eager musicians in waiting outside of a Home Depot looking for some work putting up drywall.
“I figured what would be the harm in asking if they played instruments too,” he laughs. “And Lordy, some of ’em did.”
He dubbed them the Shark Cage 6 because of the tiny house addition with barred up windows out in Globbit’s yard that the musicians are confined in whenevber they are laying down rhythm tracks for the label. Since enlisting the band, they have played on tracks by Serene Dominic, Adrian Evans, Jono Manson, The Gladhanders, Joobs, Sara Griffin, Zack Philips, The Discretions and Donna Fortunata, to name just a few.
Because Globbit has kept their identities under wraps for fear that another local label might snap them up, rumors that the Shark Cage 6 are illegals has continued to swell.
“They’re all legal. They just need the work,” is all Globbit will say on the matter, although at one point he did let it slip that the drummer’s name is Raul. Which might not mean anything.
In order to tamp down the interest, with the release of this week’s “Single of the Weekend” by Shark Cage 6 (“Rumble in West Patagonia”), Onus Records released a nondescript photo of the Shark Cage 6 on a stairwell, but some people have already pointed out that the photo is of a black metal from Helsinki called God Gave Up. Onus quickly back pedaled on issuing the pic and said it was a mislabeled photo of Ark of Gold, a Sunnyslope hard rock outfit that released a previous Single of the Weekend on Onus called “I Don’t Like You, Mister” and a biography would be forthcoming. Nothing has been heard since.
A more plausible scenario is that the group is actually a wedding band out of Chandler called Sound Buffet that combines catering and entertainment into one unbeatable event hosting package. Before starting the business, the band’s website listed Sound Buffet as having done studio work with some of the aforementioned Onus artists but since starting their new company, the band’s website has been scrubbed clean of any mention of them or Maricopa County for that matter.
We reached out to Dale Lowery, the founder of Sound Buffet and got a terse e-mail back that said, “No and if you print that you will hear for my lawyers. We’re doing great business in our first year and you’re gonna ruin it trying to link us with some run-down podunk Sunnyslope label.”
More on this story as it devolves…
Shark Cage 6 Discography
Shark Cage 6 For Others – A Selected Discography
Onus Records invites you to follow along all during the month of February as Serene Dominic writes a brand new album from scratch in 29 days for the RPM Challenge, the seventh time he’s undertaken this arduous task. It’s called “Dark Lullaby” and it will comprise the score for his next musical of the same name. The very first RPM Challenge he did in 2010 resulted in “Unnatural Blonde,” which became the music for his first musical, “A Swimming in the Head” which will be performed once again on April 2& 3 at the Firehouse Gallery in Phoenix, AZ.
“Dark Lullaby” is loosely based on one of Serene’s favorite noir films, a 1945 movie called Detour starring Tom Neal and Ann Savage. Although the book to the musical hasn’t been fully written, these are the prospective songs he hopes to work in to move the story along.
So far Serene has six songs near completed plus two songs from his back catalog he’s adding but as per the rules of the RPM Challenge, he must come up with 10 new songs. One song, “All That Gorgeous Going to Waste” is already uploaded as the next Single of the Weekend.
Onus Records has released a Deluxe Soundtrack album
0n December 5 & 6, 2015, The Firehouse Gallery in downtown Phoenix will present the new height challenged musical comedy “Swimming in the Head,” with a book and a musical score by Serene Dominic and direction by Sheri Amour and Ting Ting, the same team that brought Phoenix audiences “Rocky Horror at the Firehouse” this past spring.
The score that formed the bedrock of the show derives from a 2010 Serene Dominic album called “Unnatural Blonde” which was a song cycle written to match the 1957 Alfred Hitchcock movie classic “Vertigo” song for scene. “It was probably my favorite movie so I thought why not get a “Dark Side of the Wizard of Oz” thing going? The idea of doing it as a musical came two years later, mostly because I had no desire to watch the actual movie without the original Bernard Hermann score. By then this had morphed into someting a bit different. The book has dialogue from the movie script in places but it’s a lot siller. I mean, how are you going to convey a fear of heights on a stage 14 inches above the ground?”
That’s just one of the many challenges directors Amour and Ting face in staging this suspense and music production. Says Amour, “I hadn’t seen it in many years when I was approached about doing it, but I was very intrigued to see what Dominic had done with it. We have a lot of work to do in getting the set designed, and most importantly, having our cast perfecting the songs and scenes. We have a talented and charismatic cast and a very resourceful stage crew. This is going to be something very special.”
“My excitement for the production itself has grown with some of the liberties we’re taking, with our casting choices, and with the spin Serene Dominic has put on the classic film. I’m nutty for musicals and Hitchcock, so this was a natural interest for me and I think everyone is going to enjoy their experience both nights. We have some interactive segments so there is a strong possibility of seeing a different show either night. I am rearing to raise the dead alongside Sheri and hope to turn out the Firehouse once more.”
The cast album will feature vocal contributions from Joe Sawinski, Sara Griffin, Margo Brookover, Joobs and Serene Dominic, who will act in the show as well serve as musical director. Marcella Grassa and Jill Louise are the two narrators of the show so having two women retelling the story gives it a radically different spin, so to speak.
“Much of the drama and suspense needed in the show is built into the musical score,” says Dominic. “I think the real theme of the songs and the show isn’t the murder or agrophobia angle but the question of whether man and a women can go back into the past and somehow fix it, change the outcome of a doomed love affair. Who can’t identify with that?”
The ‘Swimming in the Head’ Deluxe Edition Album is available for digital download from Onus Records and contains the entire Serene Dominic “Unnatural Blonde” album from which the show was based plus six new cast recordings. Onus has also made several tracks from the show available for free download through its popular Single of the Weekend series. This week the song on release will be “It Is What It Is” which is performed by the show’s female lead, Sara Griffin. Physical CDs will be available at the show’s Merch Boothand from the Onus Bandcamp website.
Before the official launch of Onus Records on January 1, 2015, the label name and logo were first seen the digital booklet for the Serene Dominic album “For Your Extreme Convenience,” released on the Serene Dominic Bandcamp page on September 5, 2014.
Prior to this Onus released two Serene Dominic digital singles, each coupled with a non-album b-side. These tracks were floated as teasers for the upcoming Single of the Weekend series.
Aug 9. Serene Dominic – “The Office Lovers” c/w “It Only Hurts When I Love”
Sept 1. Serene Dominic – “Filibuster” c/w “Wearing Out My Welcome”
Single of the Weekend releases
Jan 1. Wes and the Westdales – Tightening your Grip On Me
Jan 8. No Volcano – “Tribute”
Jan 18. The Braille Building – “I’ve Known Her To Be That Way”
Jan 26. Serene Domnic & the GemSeekers – “My Secret Life”
Jan 29. Scorpion vs. Tarantula – “George Brazil (Jingle of the Weekend)”Feb 2. No Volcano – “Who Saved the Party”
Feb 9 – The Egregious Brothers & Sister Hill – ” You Can Love a Song”
Feb 14 – Serene Domnic & the GemSeekers – “It Only Hurts When I Love”
Feb 15 – The Extended Play – “The Measure” ( Ca Ho-Nus Label Launch)
Feb 16 – Eric Van Ausdal – “Square Pegs”Feb 23. Carol Pacey & the HoneyShakers – ” Epic Love Fail”
March 2 – Serene Dominic – “C’mon Do the Hesitation”
March 9 – letdowntright – “Raise the Light” & “You Should Travel”
March 16- Harrison Huffman – “Sarsaparilla Lillian”
March 16 – D3PTHS – “All I Have is Music”
March 23. Types – “The Shing”
March 30. The Jones Affair – “The Cat is in the Bag”
April 6. The Lonesome Wilderness – “Wasted”
April 13. Serene Dominic – “Primitive Man (I Ask You)”
May 26. The Gladhanders – “Never Shoulda Left”
June 1. Morbos- “Ginger Come Running”
June 8. Donna Fortunata – “What’s One More Soul To the Devil”
June 15. Cait Brennan – “Johnny Johnny Law”
June 22. Serene Dominic – “Kiss Her Daddy, Mommy’s Far Away”
June 29. The Bittersweet Way – “Infatuated”
July 4. Eric Van Ausdal – “Waiting on American Girls”
July 13. Felony Daniels – “The Last Man On Earth”
July 20. Ttypes – “Haunt All Your Mansions”
July 27. The Sunnyslope Strings featuring Serene Dominic – “General Time Horizon”
August 3. letdownright – “Sensitive to Light”
August 10. Soft Deadlines -” Death of You”
August 17. The Discretions – “Why I Don’t Deserve You”
August 24. The Breakup Society – “All the Integrity Money Could Buy”
August 31. Serene Dominic – “Everyone is Looking at Their Phones”
September 7. Field Tripp – “Nothing is As Fun”
September 14. Banana Gun – “Don’t Gimme No”
September 21. No Volcano – “The Long Game”
September 28. Adrian Evans – “Anti-Stress Zen Garden”
October 5. The Sunnyslope Strings – “You’ll Never Let Me Go”
October 12. M.B.E. (Mutant Beat Expo) – “Detour”
October 19. Banana Gun – “Disconnect Your Heart”
October 26. Serene Dominic – “Crazed Shape Shifter”
November 2. Mill’s End – “Keith’s Junk”
November 9. No Volcano – “The Historian”
November 16. Bob Woodruff – “All That Love Has Worn Away”
November 22. Sara Griffin – “It Is What It Is”
November 30. Serene Dominic – “Swimming in My Head”
December 7. Joobs – “Poseidon’s Lament (Dream ALong with Me”
December 21. Serene Dominic – “Drop of a Hat”
That’s right, if you are old enough to remember the Columbia, BMG and Capitol Record Clubs of yesteryear, you will thrill to the fact that Onus Records want to bring back all the good parts of that experience (getting a lot of CDs for dirt cheap, hearing new music, waiting by the mailbox) while eliminating the bad parts of that experience (mailing in cards, getting things in the mail you didn’t order, someone sending a US Marshall to your house to collect that $36.89 you owe for that triple-set Right Said Fred In Concert album boxed set you didn’t order.
“I used to love joining these clubs and getting a bunch of albums all at once,” says Tommy Globbit, CEO of Onus Records who admitted he did on occasion abuse his club memberships and in one case of stoned reverie, ordered ten copies of Pearl Jam’s “Ten” by mistake.
Artists who have donated their music range from Onus’ own No Volcano, Serene Dominic and The Lonesome Wilderness, D3PTHS and the Bittersweet Way to Scorpion vs Tarantula, Field Tripp, Dogbreth, Bob Woodruff (ironically the only title here that was actually featured in a Columbia Record Club in 1995), Brian Chartrand, Drunk N Horny, The Breakup Society, Soft Deadlines, Carol Pacey and the Honeyshakers and many others yet to be added. Local Phoenix labels like Related Records, Sunset Alliance, 56th Street Records and AZPX Records have joined in to make some of their titles available for people who want to give them a try.
Here’s how it works:
1. You select one CD from this circular (download enclosed PDF) that you want to pay $10 list price for.
2. You name that CD your selection of the month in 25 words or less and that artist or band will get the ten dollars.
3. We give you 4 more CDs of your choice for free , but note that each CD carries a $2 shipping cost. So you;re really still getting 5 CDs for $20.Without the US Marshall coming to your door
4. You paste the questions in the circular and your responses in an email and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
5. You make a one-time payment of $20 to email@example.com.
6. Then wait by the mailbox for up to 3 weeks and 5 compact discs in clackety jewel cases will arrive at your front door. Thrill to the convenience and pristine sound this platinum discs will provide you!
“We hope that this in a small way will expose people to new music while simultaneously help save the compact disc from hipster extinction and give the postal service something else to do,” says Globbit.
“There’s a choice we’re making,” the head of a non-profit record label imparts. “We’re saving our own lives. For reals!”
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE; APRIL 6, 2015
Joining an elite roster that already includes No Volcano, Serene Dominic, Types and The Braille Building plus alt-country rockers Carole Pacey and the Honey Shakers (on the Ca-Ho-Nus imprint) and Ryan Breen’s D3PTHS (on the experimental Zonus label). Phoenix-based alt-rock band The Lonesome Wilderness has joined forces with the Sunnyslope non-profit record label Onus Records. Today they issue a brand-new five-song EP entitled, funnily enough, The Lonesome WIlderness EP. This is their first official release of any kind and it contains five of their most popular live show staples, including “Cigarettes,” “Knives,” “Hundred Years,” “Tropicana” and “Wasted.”
While the EP is one of the few items on the Onus roster being offered for sale (with all the profits going directly to the band), the garage-a-licious track “Wasted” is being offered as a free Single of the Weekend download.
Lonesome Wilderness members include Joe Golfen, Paul Joe Golfen, Andrea Custer, Sir Danny P., Esquire and Baron Brian Weis.
Making inroads into music Onus Records CEO Tommy Globbit doesn’t even understand, Onus Records announces the formation of a new electronic label called Zonus. This comes one month after Onus announced the formation of an alt-country label called Ca-Ho-Nus Records.
The first signing to the fledgling electronic Zonus label is the Phoenix based D3PTHS ( formerly known as Back Ted N-Ted). D3PTHS is the brain child of Phoenix based producer Ryan Breen,who has been inspired by early 80’s bass music and movie scores. Ryan chops vocals and programs 808s to create a blissed out bass beats to create this arresting musical landscape that uniquely maintains melodicism at its forefront. His previous collaborations include Imogen Heap, Coppe’, Mates of State and Adam Lambert.
D3PTHS have an upcoming Silver Springs EP, which will be released on vinyl with a commemorative book sometime in June and will come out digitally in the May. Onus will also preview a track as a Single of the Weekend to demonstrate D3PTHS’ commercial viability.
In the meanwhile, you can sample and download for free the single “All I Have Is Music” at onusrecords.bandcamp.com .