Posted on May 31st, 2013 | by Leslie


Copy Red Leader

A couple of months ago Devin Melanson and I decided to solidify our musical partnership and form the geek rock duo, Copy Red Leader.  We first played together as part of the Merril Collection Filk Concert in March, where FilKONtario donated CDs and songbooks from local filk musicians to the science fiction, speculative and fantasy collection at the Lillian H. Smith library branch in Toronto.

Next we were booked to play at FKO23, the 23rd annual filk music festival held in Toronto.  While there we wanted something to help spread the word and sound of our new band, but knew we had a ridiculously short amount of time in which to pull something of quality together.  However, when your bandmate is a sound engineer/producer with his own studio, miracles can happen.  We teamed up with our friend Kari Maaren and put together a sample CD of our music called, “Pirate Elves In Space.”  We were really well received at the convention, sold more CDs than we expected to, and were so grateful for the opportunity to share our music with the kind of crowd who appreciates it.

[*EDIT  I forgot to mention that while at FKO23, Devin and I won the Penguin Songwriting Contest (Kari placed 2nd), which required us to write a song during the con using the words “penguin,” “barrista,” “neolithic,” “vilify,” and “animated.”  It took us a few hours with Devin’s guitar and me on the grand in the hotel lobby, but we nailed it.  “Meet Me At The Penguin” was born, and we’ll even prove it by recording it someday.  Kari won the themed songwriting contest the day prior, Devin placed 3rd, and a good time was had by all.]

But Peggi Warner-Lalonde (who organized the Merril concert, who’s also on the convention committee for FKO) wasn’t done with us yet.  She found us a way into Anime North, a massive anime convention held annually in Toronto attracting 10s of thousands of cosplayers, and along with Debs & Errol, Kari Maaren, and Sally Headford, we ran panels on creativity, songwriting, and the music of fandom.  Copy Red Leader performed as part of a concert with Debs & Errol and Kari, followed by an open mic and a traditional filk circle.

Tonight we’re performing at Errol’s “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Party” at Dominion on Queen.  Debs & Errol will open and close the show (which starts at 8:30 pm), and we’re on the line-up with Kari Maaren and Nerds With Guitars.  It will be the geekiest night in town, guaranteed.  We will all conspire to make it so.  It’s Errol’s 42nd birthday, and since both Devin and Alex (from NWG) had birthdays this week, it’s a real birthday bash!  This party’s open invitation, so if you can make it down come join us for a drink.  We’d love to see you there!  Plus we’ll have CDs for sale for $10, in case you haven’t got one yet.

Copy Red Leader’s next gig is at the Bovine Sex Club, as part of their monthly One Of Us Wednesdays, on June 19th.  Yes, we’re the dark side of geek music, but we’re also the sexy side.  I can’t think of a better combination than burlesque and geek rock.  If you’re like me and that sounds like something you can’t miss, then don’t!  We’ll help sultrify your night, and hopefully make you laugh.  Believe me, if you’re of the geek persuasion you’ll get the best of both.

So we’ve been busy!  Lots of rehearsals, learning new material and new gadgetry, and planning our next steps.  Our website’s in its infancy, but exists at all thanks to Karl Stahl (my husband, photographer, and all-around webstar), and we’ve got a Facebook page should you feel so inclined to follow us more closely.  Have I given you enough links?  I think so.

Welcome to the start of our journey.  Devin and I are just warming up, and we’re really excited to share what we create with all of you.  Thank you for your support, friends and family, and the fans we’re making along the way.  Especially our friends from the FKO community, our friends and fellow geek musicians, and our musical collaborators.  We wouldn’t be where we are without you.  Live long and prosper, nerds!  Love you all.

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2 Responses to Copy Red Leader

  1. Jane Garthson says:

    We are still hearing raves about your songs at FKO, and are so delighted to have that big wonderful voice of yours doing fabulous songs solo and with Devin.

    June will be a busy month because of going to the filk convention in Maryland so don’t count on us at your events. Maybe we’ll see you at the house filks June 30th (Peggi and Ken) and July 20 (Phil and I). We’ll get to the Moonshine Cafe some day soon.

    • Leslie says:

      Thanks, Jane! It was lovely to see you and Phil out at Errol’s geek party last Friday. Enjoy Maryland! I’m not sure about the house filks, yet. Hopefully we can make it to one of them.

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