Saturday, January 31, 2009

Book (etc.) Update: Late January/ Early February, 2009

Before I go into February's book update, a few words on The Complete Recordings. Everyone here knows that over the past months these sets have been difficult to find and have seemingly come and gone at an alarming rate. This has lead to a lot of frustration and speculation, and we've certainly poked a bit of fun at the situation here on the blog.

Happily, I have finally received definitive word from Warner Brothers: The sets are not being discontinued at all. They're not even in short supply. There are currently over 1,000 units of each set sitting in Warner's storage--and yes, that includes the hard-to-find Two Towers. All the "discontinued" nonsense stems from communication issues and retailers who haven't ordered enough product to meet demands. It is not a supply issue. The sets exist and are available for retailers. So the next time your favorite online seller tells you they can't get the set, tell them to check again with Warner. The sets are there and ready to go!

Why Warner doesn't sell more of them through their own online shop I'm not sure. But I'm just happy to know that the sets haven't gone the way of the dodo. I will update when Amazon has everything back in stock. I am hopeful that it won't be long now.

The updates in book world are perhaps less dramatic, but just as exciting. The past few weeks have been dedicated almost solely to the business end of this creative project--which probably sounds dull as dust, but I'm so happy to see the conceptual move into the world of the practical. The publisher has now begun assembling budgets, contracts and royalties, etc. Worldwide distribution is in place, and we're aiming to officially begin the layout work in March/April. Much of the look of the mock-up will be maintained, but again it'll be incredible to see my unrefined temporary concepts improved and materialized in the world. 

The publisher is also working hand-in-hand with Warner so that the book and Master Box schedules can be coordinated. This is a very detailed process--each project's production timeline has a huge impact on the other's. And the Master Box packaging will be entirely new--something more than a just slipcase for the CRs--so of course, that involves even more design and production work. I sometimes feel guilty about how much work I'm creating for unsuspecting parties!

The fantastic news, however, is that everything seems to be locking together perfectly. Right now we absolutely expect to have product available at next October's Radio City event. I always knew that it would be a bit of a push, but all involved have stepped up to the challenge. Let me tell you, these are great teams! In fact nothing--NOTHING--that I've suggested has yet met with corporate or creative resistance. That's staggering considering the scope of these projects.

I will probably be back in NY late in February to finish filming what Howard and I are now referring to as the Fireside Chats, better known to you as the Rarities commentaries. 

And speaking of the Radio City, the proposals for the secondary events surrounding October's performances have begun to come in. I can't think of a better way for you to all meet one another in person... and of course for me to meet you all as well! Oh yeah, and Howard should be there too. ;) I've also just heard that certain NY hotels are, in fact, planning to offer special packages to those attending the Radio City concerts. No details yet--they'll be a ways off yet--but I'll let you know as soon as things are set. 

I suppose that the downside of all this is that my schedule is getting crazier and crazier. I'm still trying to iron out the details of  my Lucerne appearance. I hope to have that all straightened out in the coming days, so I won't say anything specific until I know what's happening. London's looking like a possibility as well. I love the UK, and I know the blog has a lot of readers there. Again, watch for updates as I get everything figured out. The good news is, no matter what happens with me, Shore will still be at these events to talk about his amazing music.

I wonder now just how nutty the schedule will get once the book is actually out...

And since we're now into February, it's time for a new magnet! Please click here to order MUSIC--perhaps the only one of this set that seems eloquent all by itself. Remember, if you missed out on THE, it'll be back in October along with all the other magnets and a few Radio City goodies.

That's a lot of pokers in the fire! And Just remember, the surprises Haven't run out yet. Still plenty more to announce as time passes. See you on the discussion boards!


Thursday, January 29, 2009

CR Update 1.29.09

I'm mostly posting these Amazon updates for my own amusement at this point. The ever-shifting statuses are like screensaver of my mind, forever there to keep me from obsessing on the work at hand.

So today's curious developments:

FOTR: CR - Available; TTT: CR - "Discontinued"... which is, of course, inaccurate; 
ROTK: CR - "Temporarily out of stock"... an upgrade from the past few days!

Tune in tomorrow--or in another hour or so--and see if anything changes.

Empire Strikes

It's certainly nothing new to most, but this makes me smile nonetheless:

Read Empire's Hobbit hype here.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Four Towers?

Ok, now Amazon is listing four TTT:CR sets in stock... This after listing two (and subsequently one) in stock this morning. My brain hurts. 

UPDATE: It's gone again, although some secondary dealers are offering it new at reasonable rates at the moment. 

Posted by ShoZu

CR Update 1.28.09

In attempt to keep me posting every few minutes, Amazon has once again stocked TTT:CR. However, as of this posting there are only two copies left [UPDATE: Make that ONE left]. So the current score:

FOTR:CR - Available; TTT:CR - Available, 1 copy; 
ROTK: CR - Currently Unavailable

I get the sense I'll be posting again on this soon.


PS - Looking into the missing comments from the pre-Disqus posts. Disqus may have altered their code this week which has rendered the old comments inaccessible. I don't know if that's too big a deal to anyone, but I'll see what I can figure out nonetheless. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

CR Update 1.27.09

The ongoing saga goes on...

TTT: CR has now sold out. ROTK: CR is still not back in stock. FOTR: CR is still available.

Place your bets on which will be in or out of next!  

Lucerne Concert Five

UPDATE: The fifth Lucerne concert will be Tuesday, March 17 at 7:30 pm. Now you know!

Posted by ShoZu

Monday, January 26, 2009

Fifth Lucerne Concert Added

Still out and about and posting by phone... Long day!

FYI, due to popularity, a fifth Lucerne performance of TTT: Live has just been added! Details available soon.

Posted by ShoZu

Tangled Web

Another quickie update: It turns out that Shore is not currently signed to score The Spider as was previously indicated. This doesn't mean he won't; this doesn't mean he will. Just an update on the current state of things.

More later...

CR Alert

Hi all,

Just a quick post via phone: as of right now FOTR:CR and TTT:CR are both available on Amazon. ROTK is sold out at the moment, but this is the first time TTT has been available for a while. More posts later today...

Posted by ShoZu

Friday, January 23, 2009

News Roundup 1.23.09

Hi everyone,

Sorry for the lack of exciting updates lately. My schedule's a bit on overload and will continue to be so for the next 6 to 8 weeks. But I guess that it's good to be over-employed rather than underemployed in the current climate. That said, I'm compressing a handful of news updates into one post today:

Congratulations to The Betrayal

Shore-scored The Betrayal (Nerakhoon) was nominated for the 2008 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature this past week. Congratulations to all involved!

The score album is still scheduled for release on Howe Records, though no release date has yet been announced. 

Although Howard Shore was not nominated in the Best Score category this year, Nerakhoon's nod is a testament to the hard work and artistry contributed by everyone on this very personal project.

Complete Recordings Update(s)

If you've been watching the blog consistently, you'll surely have noted that The Lord of the Rings: The Complete Recordings have faded in and out of availability several times in the past weeks. As of this post, I have no real explanation other than the demand simply seems to be surpassing the supply. As always, these releases have not been "discontinued" as Amazon would have you believe. I'll continue to do my best to keep everyone on top of the situation. Please don't give your business to bootleggers and scalpers... and as the author of the liners, I can't wholeheartedly get behind the MP3 albums, but you do what you need to do.

As of right now, FOTR: CR is the sole CR set available on Amazon.

The Spider

Cinewerx Film Production, LLC is stating that Howard Shore will be scoring their upcoming feature The Spider. The Spider should represent Shore's first straight ahead horror film since 1995's Seven, although his opera this past summer certainly visited the same territory. Though fans of his LOTR work may find such dark subject matter off-putting, it is fertile ground for the sort of macabre experimentalism with which Shore began his career. And for those keeping score, this means Shore will soon have The Fly (film), The Fly (opera), Spider and The Spider on his oeuvre. With the moths of The Silence of the Lambs and Shelob in his past, and the spiders of The Hobbit on the horizon, Shore must sure qualify for some sort of entomological honor by now!

Home Front News

Happily, everything is still cooking right along on the project I'm actually supposed to be covering on this blog! I'm hoping to have a very exciting book announcement ready around the turn of the month. And, of course, as February rolls around, we'll be introducing the next Music of LOTR Films magnet, and that means that our THE magnet will be phased out until this coming autumn. Don't be stuck without THE, order today!

Looks like I'll also be heading out to NY near the end of February in order to complete last November's filming. So I guess I'll have to begin remembering what I wore last time.

And speaking of the busy winter/spring schedule--it's entirely possible that I may have to adjust a couple of upcoming personal appearances in order to make everything come together. I'm doing my very best to avoid and unpleasant changes, but at some point, the clock can only provide so many hours. I'll update as events warrant. 

That's it for now!


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

2 out of 3 CRs Back in Stock... Again

1/20/08: In a constant attempt to please/confuse us all, Amazon.com is once again offering FOTR:CR and ROTK:CR for sale. TTT:CR is still not available, but they have at least removed the unpleasant "discontinued" banner. If you've been holding out, I'd suggest you click the links at right and start ordering while the ordering's good!

In all seriousness, I think this bodes well for the supply issues, at least for the moment.

[UPDATE 1/23/09]: ...And a fleeting moment it was! TTT and ROTK are both marked "discontinued" once again. Look for them to return phoenix-like at some point in the unforeseen future. FOTR is still in stock however. Thanks to RATLSNAKE for the update.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Regarding the Complete Recordings

Hi everyone,

Sorry I haven't been around more in the past few days. Between the crazy Chicago weather and a few other projects, I've been pretty tied up! I promise I'll begin working my way through emails and posts in the coming days!

In the meantime... Many of you are waiting to hear anything on the current state of The Complete Recordings sets. As of right now (Monday, 1/19), I've not yet received any answers to my inquiries. I'd imagine the holiday weekend has slowed communications.  I promise, busy schedule or no, as soon as I hear back I'll post here.  Hang tight, folks...

That said, I did receive some incredibly good news on a different front today. I hope to be able to make an announcement regarding this soon!

So there you go... A post with two topics and no information. I seem to have developed a definite quirk here! ;)

Monday, January 12, 2009

FAQ Additions Coming

Hi everyone,

In the coming days I'd like to semi-overhaul (oxymoron?) the FAQ with a few additions, and possibly a subtraction or two. I'm already looking to add details regarding live performances, the ever-elusive CRs... and maybe a little bit about my involvement with all this since there occasionally seems to be some confusion about just who I am.

If you have any requests for FAQ additions, please post them as comments here. Likewise, if anything currently listed is unclear, let me know so that I can either cut or revise material as is appropriate. Thanks for your help!


UPDATE: The process has begun. See here, and let me know what, if anything, I'm missing.

ROTK: CR Back at Amazon 1/15

Amazon.com is now indicating that The Return of the King: The Complete Recordings will be back in stock beginning January 15. Still no word on The Two Towers, but I'll continue to dig and see what I can learn.

Thanks for your patience, everyone!

Thanks, Larry!

Larry Curtis of TheOneRing.net was interviewed by Philadelphia's Fictional Frontiers radio program on January 4 and not only managed to mention the upcoming Radio City performances, but also sent some very kind words my direction:


Sohaib: Before we head out Larry, talk a little bit about this wonderful event in New York. I’m actually going to try to go definitely because I know it’s on two days, but give our listeners the details on this because I don’t think I’ve seen anything like this in any genre of film ever especially where its going to be held at Madison Radio City Music Hall.

Larry: Yeah, its just been announced about a week or so. A good friend of the website is also a good friend of Howard Shores – his name is Doug Adams and he’s kind of Howard’s right hand guy. He’s been working on a book about the music of the Lord of the Rings which is pretty wonderful. I’ve been lucky enough to share some good conversations with him. So they want to have this big – part of it I guess is part of the 10 year, but Radio City Music Hall the 9th and 10 of October they will play the Fellowship of the Ring live, and Howard will be there and they will perform the orchestra parts as well as the chorus, so I guess really all the score – live score I guess is the best way to say it. It will be those two nights, and I have it on very good authority, if they sell out it will be on a 3rd night on the Sunday of the same weekend. So really with that much notice, any Lord of the Rings fans, any fan of music and film, which is pretty much everyone, really ought to try to go and attend. And I’m saying that not because I’m getting anything – it’s nothing to do with me except I think it’s awesome. The OneRing is also going to try to plan some events around the weekend so anyone who does go there will be plenty of other things to do there as well. But it’s a phenomenal chance to see the live score of the films, it’s just as cool as can be.


I don't know if "right hand guy" is entirely accurate, but it's certainly flattering! Read the full interview at the link above. And keep your eyes out for Larry... we may be seeing him mentioned around these parts in the not-too-distant future.

Thursday, January 8, 2009


Alex Perez has converted the BELIEVE Olympic campaign spots into a convenient YouTube video, which you can now watch immediately below. Thanks, Alex!

InContention.com: Shore on Doubt

InContention.com--a website dedicated to covering all things Oscar--is running a piece on the makers of Doubt. Select comments from Howard Shore:


“Doubt” is unquestionably a small, intimate film where excessively showy work from the crafts artists had significant potential to prove distracting. Shore says he felt it was important to reflect that fragility in the score. “Much of the music was church music that I needed to blend in with the score,” he says. “I needed to capture that intimacy so I wrote the score for just 17 musicians.”


From a musical point of view, Shore agrees that the first thing to do is “capture the time and place, which in this case was 1964 and The Bronx.” His use of folk instruments was an attempt to bring the audience back in time, he says. And while many composers are hired at the last minute, Shore prefers to be involved in the process as early as possible. On “The Lord of the Rings,” for instance (an effort of which he says “everything I know about filmmaking and drama is in those 10 hours”), he was involved very early on. “Being part of the production leads to the best results in the filmmaking,” he says.


Read the well-written piece in its entirety here

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

FOTR: CR Back at Amazon

As they promised, Amazon now has FOTR: CR back in stock and ready for order. TTT and ROTK are still not back, but they've at least removed the erroneous "Discontinued" banner. Progress!

Click the links at right to order FOTR: CR should it remain on your personal wish list.

I'll keep you informed as more CR news reaches me. As ever, please remember: these sets are not being discontinued. Supply issues are no doubt frustrating us all, but the sets are alive and well. 

PS - If you're especially anxious, the ROTK: CR set is sill available here, at the Warner Brothers Records online shop.

Ellen Kuras, Betrayal and Shore

Director Ellen Kuras--who you may know better as the cinematographer of edgy pictures like I Shot Andy Warhol, Summer of Sam, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, etc.--talks about her directorial debut, The Betrayal (Nerakhoon) in this piece on AJ Schnack's All These Wonderful Things site. [Mild language warning.] Her comments on Howard Shore:

The sound design was a collaboration -- Dave Paterson, who gave us incredible foley and sound effects and Benny Mouthon, our mixer and longtime friend and tech advisor on the film. I was most interested in using sound as metaphor as well as realistic sound. For all of the shots in Laos, Dave re-created the sounds for the visuals, because I shot all of the Laos material at 32fps to give it a feeling of memory. Importantly, we also wanted to use silence as a sound. After the bombing sequence, the silence of the monk walking up the stairs makes the moment that much more pregnant, reflecting on the roar of the B52's that came before. Howard Shore, our incredibly gifted, brilliant composer, also crafted silences into his score. One clear example of sound metaphor is at the end of the market bombing scene when we see an archival shot of wind blowing dust across the plants in the dirt. Instead of having the sound of a huge wind blowing, I wanted the sound to be a whisper of the wind, almost saying that this is what we become after we die, a breath of dust.

Read more at the link above. And remember, you can hear Kuras, Shore and a host of others discuss the work this coming Friday, January 9. Click here for more info.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Shore on BELIEVE

CTV News has just published a video piece on Canada's Olympic BELIEVE campaign, including a few comments from Shore and some brief session footage. Thanks to Matt C for the catch!

Don't stop believin'! A longer interview is now available here.

Wiki Woes

I had to laugh after reading the following on Wikipedia:

Click to expand, or see transcription below

[Which Doug Adams?
The Doug Adams link is to a dab page. Anchoress 18:23, 26 June 2007 (UTC)
And should the reference to an upcoming book of his be removed due to his dramatically reduced odds of ever writing again?Kai Su?My Talk Page 20:51, 3 June 2008 (UTC)]

This is on the Discussion page of Wikipedia's "Music of the Lord of the Rings film trilogy" entry. I've never actually checked there before. 

Does this mean that some injurious fate will soon befall my person!? Most likely "KaiSu" mistakenly thinks the deceased Douglas Adams of British sci-fi fame was writing this book. However, he passed away in May, 2001 before even Fellowship was finished... If someone knows something I don't about my immediate future, please clue me in!

Ok, back to the regularly scheduled program. I dislike self-referential posts, but thought this was amusing/disturbing. ;)

The Betrayal/Nerakhoon Screening with Shore Q&A

Readers in New York's Lower Hudson Valley area should note that there is a screening of The Betrayal/Nerakhoon this coming Friday, 1/9. Several of the filmmakers, including Howard Shore, will be present for a Q&A session after the 7:30 showing. Details:

What: "The Betrayal" (Nerakhoon)
Who: Rivertown Film and Riverspace Arts in Nyack
Where: Riverspace Arts in Nyack, 119 Main St.
When: 6 p.m. reception, 7:30 film showing Friday, followed by Q & A with Ellen Kuras, Thavisouk Phrasavath, Flora Fernandez-Marengo, Chiemi Karasawa and Howard Shore.
Cost: $15; $12 for senior citizens and students
Call: 845-348-1880

Go forth and report back!

Monday, January 5, 2009

BELIEVE: Hear Howard Shore's Olympic Music Now

A few weeks back I alluded to Shore's new composition for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics. While the announcement campaign is scheduled to hit the airwaves around the upcoming Super Bowl, you can already see the first ad and hear Shore's music by clicking here:

Globe and Mail's article on the campaign, and a second ad, are available here.


Thursday, January 1, 2009

Ring in the New Year!

Good morning to the bleary-eyed blog readers of the world, and happy 2009!

I thought we'd start the year off with a little lighthearted fun by updating the Blog Gift Shop. Over the next 9 months we'll be offering one magnet at a time. The collection will spell out:


...or whatever rearranged statement you chose to blare across your refrigerator door. The musicians among you will also notice that each Word Magnet doubles as a Note Magnet. Assemble all nine of these notes to complete the History of the Ring theme: 


...or again, jumble things up to create your own Ring Theme variant.

Remember, each magnet is available for one month only! January is THE and only THE. February is MUSIC and only MUSIC, etc. However, come next October and the Long Expected Party, all nine magnets will be available together along with a few other goodies to help Radio City-goers identify one another.

So click the link above or use the permalink in the right sidebar and you too can confuse your roommates/spouses for the next month with a magnet proclaiming nothing more than a B-natural and THE!
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