The J. Michael Straczynski Message Archive


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    From: J. Michael Straczynski <>
 Subject: jms Songwriter ?
      To: CIS  
    Date: 7/26/1996 5:35:00 AM  

Message 1 in thread 

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Darran Williams <> asks:
> 2) Who sings the songs?

No, not a career move; it's not widely known -- I guess mainly
because I haven't ever mentioned it much -- but from time to time I've
written songs. Mainly the lyrics; I know how the music should sound,
but I'm incapable of reading music...I think it's the same mental
glitch that hits me when I try to do certain kinds of math. "X is a
numerical value." "No, X is a letter, 7 is a numerical value." I can't
ever seem to make the one equal the other in my head. Similarly, a
black note on a piece of paper isn't the music...anyway, it's a

So when I write songs, and I have a specific melody I'm hearing
in my head, I'm invariably placed in the humiliating position (since I
can't play a musical instrument) of humming it, or somehow trying to
suggest it to the music-person. Suffice to say it looks really goofy
and stupid.

Anyway...despite this, I do sometimes write songs, and like to
keep my hand in, as they say. I did two songs for an ABC-TV prime-time
Real Ghostbusters special, did a few songs that have been recorded by
small groups (you've never heard of any of them, trust me), another
song that, much to my chagrin, is apparently still being used in church
songbooks (and that's all I will ever say about that)...and when I
decided to do a show with a singer for B5, I wrote a couple of songs
for that one, with Chris Franke providing the music.

They're bluesy, Billie Holliday kinds of songs, updated
slightly. I'm actually very pleased with how they came out (Erica
Gimpel, one of the cast members from Fame, plays the part and sings the
songs). Several folks around here want either or both songs to come
out on the next B5 album, but I"m loathe to do so, on the theory that
the soundtracks work better in the style we've already used, all
instrumental. (There've even been some inquiries from music people
who've heard the songs about releasing them commercially, but that
would mean adding about 30 seconds to each song to make them airplay
compatible, and I'm not sure I want to take on the extra hassle just

    From: J. Michael Straczynski <>
 Subject: jms Songwriter ?
      To: CIS  
    Date: 7/30/1996 7:19:00 AM  

Message 2 in thread 

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Chris Croughton (UK) <> asks:
> To you, maybe, but there are dozens (hundreds?
> How about all the blues singers who couldn't recognise a note of
> written music but wrote those superb songs? Has it been shown yet?

No, the songs are in "Walkabout," which is the next episode up
after "War Without End."

    From: J. Michael Straczynski <>
 Subject: jms Songwriter ?
      To: CIS  
    Date: 10/1/1996 5:55:00 AM  

Message 3 in thread 

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(blocked) asks:
> Is "Walkabout" the first new episode back from the long reruns?
> I saw it on dish but wondered if new shows started the week
> before?

No, Walkabout is the first of the final 5 held back from year

    From: J. Michael Straczynski <>
 Subject: jms Songwriter ?
      To: CIS  
    Date: 10/2/1996 10:20:00 AM  

Message 4 in thread 

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(blocked) asks:
> Is this where we get 8-9 new ones in a row?



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