First Pics of Nathan Barr and Lisbeth Scott at Ubeda Film Fest!

July 19, 2010

As reported to us by FILM MUSIC LIVE, a new channel on Justin.TV, last week Nathan Barr (True Blood, The Dukes of Hazzard) and vocalist Lisbeth Scott (The Passion of the Christ) performed in concert at Ubeda Spain’s International Film Festival. We were lucky enough to receive some great pictures of the event that we can share with you now and have the promise of live video of the concert to come! We’re really looking forward to seeing, and hearing, Nathan and Lisbeth‘s ‘live’ concert but until then these wonderful photos will have to sustain us.

(Photo credit:  nathanbarr.com)

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Talking Music with Jace Everett, Nathan Barr and Gary Calamar

July 14, 2010

Music is the universal language; no matter who and how it’s played, musicians and music fans alike will talk for hours about this wonderful craft. Jace Everett, Nathan Barr and Gary Calamar are no different. APM Music created three podcasts with these musicians, better known for their musical work on the HBO hit show True Blood All three men discuss their music, their success, and the future of their musical endeavors.

Though only six minutes long, Jace Everett shines in Podcast 65. He not only discusses how he got involved with True Blood, but he also explains how the show inspired his new album “Revelations.”  The first thing Jace mentions is that while having his song, “Bad Things” be the theme song for True Blood, he must tread lightly; he doesn’t want to be known for the rest of his life as the True Blood guy.

However, True Blood has been a great opportunity and he was lucky that Alan Ball found his song. While writing, Alan Ball took a break and while searching through iTunes, discovered Jace‘s song, which he had wrote and released years ago. Alan Ball gave the song to Digital Kitchen and asked them to add visuals to the song; when the finished product was made, Alan Ball knew this was the mood and tone of the show. Jace believes having Alan Ball find his song was like a jackpot and really pulled his career out of the stagnant place it had been.

With being part of True Blood, Jace was able to create and push his new CD quickly; many of the new songs are inspired by the first season, but don’t have to be literary taken. “Burn for You” is based on the scene where Bill walks out under the sun in order to save Sookie, while “Damned if I Do” can be taken as a love song between a human and a vampire. However, the songs transcend the show and the genre of vampires.

Even if people aren’t into vampries, they can enjoy Jace‘s songs. The inspiration of a song is not always what the songs can represent. For example, “Bad Things” was inspired by a time when Jace was living in Nashville working as a bass player for someone who was pursuing a record deal. The guy owed Jace money and he was a little upset about not getting it. The original song was based on Jace doing bad things to this guy, like moving his furniture around. Soon though, he realized the idea was ridiculous and the song held more of a sexual mood than a menacing one.

Currently, Jace is on tour on the West Coast for the next ten days and moving through the country gaining fans. He does sing “Bad Things” but not surprisingly fans leave with a lot more favorites by Jace Everett than just the True Blood theme song.

With Podcast 66, Gary Calamar discusses his job as music supervisor for True Blood, the differences between “Six Feet Under“and True Blood, the Southern influences of the show and its music, as well as how the show has influenced his own work. He also gives us an inside view of Alan Ball as a songwriter.

After serving as the music supervisor for “Six Feet Under”, Gary is now working with True Blood, “House“, and “Dexter.” He also chose the songs for the feature film “Varsity Blues“, which won him a gold record. He hosts a hit radio show on KCRW in Santa Monica California every Sunday. He is also in the process of writing a book about the rise and fall of the record store, which will be released on record day.

It seemed natural for Alan Ball and Gary Calamar to work together again. However, there’s a difference between working on “Six Feet Under” and True Blood. While Alan Ball is still meticulous about the music, he seems to want to have fun with the music for True Blood. Gary felt like perhaps his initial music choices were too serious and Alan Ball reminded Gary that the show was about vampires, giving them license to get crazy with the music.

There is a strong Southern influence as the show is set in Bon Temps, Louisiana. For Gary, it makes it easier to choose music; there is such a rich music that comes out of that region, old artists and new. Gary gets to use twisted rockabilly Southern rock in Merlotte’s, while bringing in some dark and heavy death metal in Fangtasia. Gary is allowed to explore different types of music and be creative in the choices he makes in order to create a true atmosphere for True Blood.

Gary appreciates working on True Blood; given the large budget, Gary is allowed to use five to ten solid songs in one episode, which gives him a lot to work with. Other shows don’t give too much money or thought on the music of a show. While they do end up sounding fantastic, they rely heavy on the score, while True Blood is allowed to combine score and different artists to create something interesting and new.

Speaking of new and interesting, Gary tells a great story about Alan Ball and his song writing abilities. In Season 2, there was a party scene where they wanted to have a unique sound attached to it, rather than a song that was overly exposed. Alan Ball collaborated with the music editor to create a rough song called “Dig“. The song somehow managed to make it on the end credits; though initially a joke, the song ended up causing a flurry of inquiry from fans. No one thought the song would be such a success, but it is now a part of the second volume of the True Blood soundtrack.

When asked about the end credits and how the songs played at the end seem to be connected to the last gotcha of the show, Gary noted that the last song of every episode usually come from a collaboration, between himself, Alan Ball, and the writers. In the end, it truly is about having fun and creating intrigue in their fans through music. By using fun and inspiring music, fans get to view True Blood in a different and exciting way.

In Podcast 67 in the APM Music Podcast Series, Nathan Barr explains how he got involved with True Blood, what inspires the music for the show and how he has created the sonic themes for each season, and his views on himself as a musician as well as his collaboration with Lisbeth Scott.

Composer Nathan Barr has scored more than 24 feature films, including the “Dukes of Hazzards” and his most ambitious project to date has been composing the music for each episode of True Blood. His score for “Hostel” was used for the temp in the pilot, which placed him on the short stack of composers Alan Ball was considering for the show. Though he was proud of his work in “Hostel” he didn’t think it fit the mood of True Blood and gave Alan Ball a CD of his other work, which won him the job as composer for this hit show.

When it comes to inspirations for the show, Nathan wanted something that had a small and intimate feel; the show is always revolving around human interactions: couples, or close friendships. Nathan wanted to keep it very simple, using instruments such as acoustic guitar, cello, and the piano to name a few.

The best part of working for the show is that Nathan plays his own instruments, which allows him to be a part of the musical process 100%. He composes by improvisation and he finds that he can completely be involved in the process and truly infuse himself into the music and show.

Other than the instrumentation, the sonic theme of the show consists of the characters and their relationships. Bill and Sookie‘s theme, the love theme or as Stephen Moyer puts it “Bill‘s Lament” is the most famous and comes up throughout the season. Many of the characters have a musical themes: Godric, Eric, and Sam.

When he started this project, Nathan bought a few new instruments in order to mix up the way he writes and show him new ways of thinking about music. When he first saw the pilot, he new the sounds he wanted to create would be dark and scary. He had a piano sawed in half in order for his to have access to the hammers and strings.

However, Nathan doesn’t write and play alone. For the show, he’s collaborated with his ex-wife Lisbeth Scott. As dear friends and collaborators, they worked together to really create great texture in music and add lyrics that showcase the emotion of the show. Nathan praises Lisbeth’s unique voice and her talent as a singer.

Currently, aside from True Blood, Nathan is working with Anna Paquin’s brother on his first feature film “Open House“, as well as working with Eli Roth on a film titled “Cotton“. He is also composing for a film called “Mother’s Day” (starring True Blood‘s Deborah Ann Woll) and a dramedy called “Peep World“. With so many projects that Nathan will be infusing his musical skills and talents into, fans will be able to truly experience the emotion of these films.

Three podcasts with three talented musicians, who are the best in the business of film, television, advertising, and video game music. APM Music has given fans a chance to really learn and experience the music they hear in the background of their favorite dramas in a whole new different way.

The podcasts shed light on the creative process as well as inspire young musicians to look for collaboration opportunities with visual projects. These are only three out of a number of amazing interviews. Of course, because they revolve around True Blood‘s great musicians, Truebies will sink their fangs into these interviews a little faster than the rest!

To listen to the Jace Everett’s podcast click here.

To listen to the Gary Calamar’s podcast click here.

To listen to the Nathan Barr’s podcast click here.

SOURCE: apmmusic.com

(Photo Credits: apmmusic.com)

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True Blood’s Score Listed on Top 20 Soundtracks of 2009

January 3, 2010

True Blood has done it again! The beautiful score by Nathan Barr has been placed on a Top 20 list for soundtracks from movies, TV, and video games for 2009 and takes the #11 spot. The Examiner.com, written by Mark Morton (whom we must thank very much for sending the information to us), so eloquently described Nathan‘s music that it must be read as it was written.

11. TRUE BLOOD (Nathan Barr) – Minimalist soundtracks have never been more heartfelt and moving than when Nathan Barr took on the True Blood project. And the score itself (no offense, Lisbeth) is beautiful enough to be released as an independent folk music album. Barr never ceases to amaze his audience with forward-thinking, compositional dexterity and an unending supply of esoteric instruments. Fingers are firmly crossed that Varese Sarabande releases a score for Season Two!

Once again, a special thank you to Mark Morton for sharing this with us.  You can read our in-depth, exclusive interview with Nathan Barr and Lisbeth Scott here as they discuss the complexity that goes into creating soundtracks for Alan Ball‘s phenomenal HBO TV vampire series True Blood.

SOURCE: Examiner.com

(Photo credit: Isis Nocturne)

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“Take Me Home” Singer Lisbeth Scott Discusses Her Recent Work

December 25, 2009

Lisbeth Scott, who lent her beautiful voice to “Take Me Home” from the True Blood soundtrack, also sang some of the music for James Cameron’s new blockbuster, Avatar. In an interview with the Atlanta Examiner, Lisbeth talks about working with some of the biggest composers in film and television, and why music is so important in her life.

She has collaborated in the past with award-winning composers like Hans Zimmer and John Williams. On Avatar, she was thrilled to work with James Horner for the first time. She has had great experiences with these composers:

“I loved working with them, because I feel I have a connection with them. I understand how they work, and I think they understand how I think and how I like to be creative.”

Lisbeth says that many times, she feels something in the music that indicates how she should approach the vocals.

She also describes the special working relationship she has with True Blood composer Nathan Barr:

Nathan and I have worked together a lot, and we really work together quite effortlessly, and most of the time we know what the other wants to do instinctively. We started working together, actually, on a small film a while back called The Virginian. After that, we worked on a couple of my releases and a bunch of his films. And when True Blood came along, there were several instances where a song was needed, and that was that. We work so well together, and it’s such a joy. It’s very organic and effortless.”

Among the projects that she has for the upcoming year, she will be doing something new with Nathan, but she did not get into specifics about it in the interview and is scheduled to perform The Passion of the Christ soundtrack in Saint Peter’s Square in Vatican City in June.. She also mentioned that she was working on some stuff of her own, which can be found at www.lisbethscott.com.

Lisbeth offers her thoughts on music and why she does what she does:

“My feeling is, I came into the world with a voice, and I want to use it. I want to reach as many people as is physically possible because it fulfills me in my heart and I see how happy it makes people, and there’s nothing better than that! For me to work with such a beautiful piece of music in one of the most gorgeous places on Earth, I can’t really ask for more.”

We certainly appreciate her sharing her musical gifts with us and hope that her future work with Nathan Barr involves something True Blood-related!

SOURCE: examiner.com

(Photo credit: lisbethscott.com)

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Lisbeth Scott To Be Featured In “Avatar” Movie

November 12, 2009

JAMES CAMERON’S “AVATAR” FILM TO FEATURE VOCALS
FROM SINGER LISBETH SCOTT

Composer James Horner to use sought-after singer’s ethereal voice for anticipated film, set to release December 18, 2009

Lisbeth-Scott-Hope-Is-A-ThingAvatar” Composer James Horner has added singer Lisbeth Scott to his creative musical lineup for the highly secretive film from director James Cameron.  The singer, whose voice can be recognized from many of Hollywood’s biggest blockbuster films of the past decade, will be featured on vocal tracks to be used in the film’s anticipated breakthrough score.

In his recent interview with MovieScore Magazine, Fox Music executive Mike Knobloch described Horner’s early music of “Avatar” as being “epic and hugely cinematic… music that transports us to another world… a brilliantly unique blend of traditional and contemporary, electronic elements that spans the entire spectrum of attitude and energy – from bombastic action to the delicate, romantic discovery of a new world.”  The addition of Lisbeth’s vocals came about a year into the score’s progress.

Lisbeth-Scott-ConcertLisbeth Scott’s film and television repertoire is of an equally high caliber: Of the last 5 years’ top-grossing movies, she’s been a featured vocalist in almost half (Passion of the Christ, Narnia, Shrek 2, Transformers, and Munich).  Through 2009 she will have made her mark on 2 of television’s current top 10 shows as well, with her songs being chosen for both HBO‘s “True Blood” and ABC‘s “Brothers and Sisters“.  Lisbeth’s ninth studio album will be released on November 10, 2009 via BFM Digital under the title “Hope is a Thing”, as well as a new holiday release “Peace on Earth”.  Along with these new albums comes an innovative world-wide web-based campaign at www.hopeisathing.com, featuring children of all backgrounds and ethnicities who express what it is they hope for in today’s world via holding up a hand-created sign, and an artistic new music video shot by Academy-Award winning Haskell Wexler.  “Hope is a Thing” debuted at the Edgemar Center for the Arts (November 7 and 8, 2009, www.edgemar.org), and will debut on November 20, 2009 at Berkeley’s Rudramandir – a center for spirituality and healing (www.rudramandir.com).

Avatar” is an upcoming 3-D science fiction epic film directed by Titanic’s James Cameron, and due to be released on December 18th, 2009 by 20th Century Fox.  It is expected that Avatar’s stereoscopic 3D and sound techniques will revolutionize the technology used in modern-day filmography.

For more information on Lisbeth Scott, visit her official website www.lisbethscott.com.

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Lisbeth Scott’s “Hope Is A Thing” Release

November 4, 2009

SINGER LISBETH SCOTT RELEASES NEW INNOVATIVE PHOTO CAMPAIGN
“HOPE IS A THING”, TO BENEFIT CHILDREN’S CHARITY “EDUCATION THROUGH MUSIC”

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Acclaimed singer/songwriter Lisbeth Scott’s new album, “Hope is a Thing,” is set to be released on November 10th.   The new album will be available for sale on iTunes, Amazon.com, and all digital outlets as well as select venues nationwide.   The disc features several collaborations with well-known composers (Harry Gregson-Williams, Nathan Barr) as well as two stirring new covers (Imagine, Hallelujah).  Distributed by BFM Digital, Inc., “Hope is a Thing” will also feature two all-new music videos for the title track “Hope is a Thing” and “Good to Me” (originally from the 2008 film “Shutter”).

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During this challenging economic time, Scott wanted to create a musical and visual collection that would remind people of the importance of hanging on to hopes and dreams and the simple, non-material things that open our hearts and bring us joy.  Thus the music and video of “Hope Is a Thing” was born.  Lisbeth also feels these concepts are often best demonstrated through innocent, youthful eyes, so along-side the album release comes the launch of an innovative web-based world-wide campaign featuring children of all backgrounds and ethnicities who express what it is they hope for in today’s world via the simple image of holding up a hand-created sign.  The first phase of the campaign can be seen at www.hopeisathing.com, in the “Gallery” section.  Over the next several weeks, children and schools from all over the world are encouraged to upload their own signs and photos to help boost the awareness of the campaign, as well as the exciting prospect of being featured in the actual music video.

Lisbeth-Scott-2The highly-anticipated music video will be directed by Joseph Greco (Canvas) and shot by Academy-award winning cinematographer Haskell Wexler, who shot such legendary films “Bound for Glory”, “American Graffiti”, “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”, “The Thomas Crown Affair” and many more.  The video aims to give children a voice and focus on the power of hope and vision.

Following in the spirit of the campaign, a portion of proceeds of Scott’s album will go directly to the organization “Education Through Music”, who’s mission statement reads, “At ETM, we believe every child deserves a well-rounded education… one that includes music both as a subject in its own right and as a means of supporting learning in other areas.”

Scott will be promoting her new album at several upcoming appearances:  11/7 and 11/8 for the official CD and video release parties in LA at the Edgemar Theater in Santa Monica (www.edgemarcenter.org).  The 11/8 show is all ages and children are encouraged to bring their own “I hope for…” signs.  11/20 finds Scott in Northern California  with a performance at Berkeley’s Rudramandir – a center for spirituality and healing. (www.rudramandir.com).

And on October 28th, Lisbeth will be teaming up with the organization Women in Film for an all-female musician and composer panel with Wendy Melovin, Lisa Coleman (”Heroes”,”Nurse Jackie”), Helene Muddiman and Hilary Thomas.  Founded in 1973, Women in Film is dedicated to helping women achieve their highest potential within global entertainment.  Please see www.wif.org for more info on the panel.

Scott will also release her debut holiday album “Peace on Earth,” on October 27th.  This album is a mix of new versions of old classics, “Dona Nobis Pacem”  (which Yo Yo Ma calls “Beautifully performed”) and “Oh Come All Ye Faithful”, as well as original songs. “Infused with Lisbeth’s shiver-inducing vocals and arrangements, this album gets to the true healing heart of the holiday season”.

Lisbeth-Scott-3The daughter of two award winning ball room dancers, Lisbeth Scott was raised as a classical pianist, rehearsing hours a day and headed for a concert career.  She studied at The New England Conservatory, Connecticut College and The University of London throughout the 1990’s. Lisbeth decided to head out to Los Angeles where she really began to discover her voice… as did the film world. Scott’s vocals can be heard on over 50 blockbuster films including “The Passion of the Christ,” “Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, And The Wardrobe,” “Shrek 1 and 2”, and Steven Spielberg’s “Munich” in which legendary composer, John Williams wrote a five minute solo specifically for her.  Meanwhile, Scott recorded and produced four prior albums of her solo work, two of which were named “Album of the Year” by New Age Voice.  Scott has teamed up with Greg Ellis to form the duo, Biomusique, which won best new artist and vocal album in The New Age Reporter Awards for 2008.

For more information on Lisbeth Scott and to hear samples of her music, visit her official website www.lisbethscott.com.  For details on “Hope is a Thing” and Education Through Music, visit www.hopeisathing.com.

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PHOTOS: LA Gay And Lesbian Chamber of Commerce Gala Featuring Alan Ball, Nathan Barr And Lisbeth Scott

October 8, 2009

Earlier this week, the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce held its 2009 Gala, celebrating those businesses, individuals, and organizations that have influenced the LGBT community in a positive way.

True Blood was well represented at the event. The show’s creator and executive producer, Alan Ball, was among the featured guests. He introduced True Blood composer Nathan Barr and singer Lisbeth Scott, giving a live performance of their beautiful song, “Take Me Home,” from Season one.

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Photo credit: Brian Putnam / flickr.com

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True Blood Composer Nathan Barr and Vocalist Lisbeth Scott to Appear at LA Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce Annual Gala Event!

September 18, 2009

scott-6The 2009 LA Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce Gala Event will have a strong True Blood presence with our favorite composer Nathan  Barr pairing up with the dulcet voice of Lisbeth Scott to perform the wonderful song, “Take Me Home”.  This is the song that Nathan and Lisbeth created to accompany the incredible ‘pie scene’ from True Blood’s first season episode “Cold Ground” and which is now available on Nathan and Lisbeth’s new True Blood (Soundtrack) CD.  In addition Nathan and Lisbeth will be introduced by series creator and producer Alan Ball!  There is even a rumored guest appearance by another True Blood cast member which we will reveal if/when their appearance is confirmed.

And the best news is that the event is open to the public and YOU can attend and hear Lisbeth and Nathan perform “Take Me Home” live!  According to their website the LA Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (LAGLCC) is an organization of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and gay-allied businesses, professionals, and individuals, who have joined together to effect positive growth in ourselves, our work, our community and our future. Since it’s inception the LAGLCC has been a positive voice for the LGBT community. Their activities include dinners, webinars, political activism, and community outreach.

See www.laglcc.org for ticket information.

trueblood_150Press the button below to purchase Nathan and Lisbeth’s True Blood (Soundtrack) CD:

And don’t forget to visit Nathan and Lisbeth‘s websites!

The full press release appears below:

LOS ANGELES)– Eighty years after setting the stage for the first-ever Academy Awards, the Blossom Ballroom of Hollywood’s prestigious landmark, the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel (7000 Hollywood Blvd.), will now play host to another significant awards celebration, the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce’s 2009 Gala, on Oct. 4.

The much-anticipated event will celebrate the achievements of L.A.-area businesses and organizations that have helped to garner or maintain a positive reputation as a member or ally of the LGBT (Lesbian, Bisexual, Gay, Transgender) community.

Scheduled to take place from 5 to 9 p.m., attendees of the 2009 Gala will catch prized glimpses of numerous television personalities including the event’s host Hal Sparks, True Blood creator and Executive Producer Alan Ball, Desperate Housewives’ Kathryn Joosten, Dallas’ Charlene Tilton, The L Word’s Daniela Sea, and Jennifer Elise Cox, well known for her over-the-top, comedic portrayal of Jan Brady in the Brady Bunch movie series. Guests will also be invited to view exclusive live musical performances by American Idol’s Frenchie Davis, True Blood composer Nathan Barr and vocalist Lisbeth Scott, and out Latin singing sensation Ben Roman.

Other appearances throughout the night include performances by the Bollywood Step dance troupe and the Balliamos Dance Studio, the country’s first same-sex dance studio; and a special presentation of the Raytheon Community Advancement Award by the founder of the NOH8 Campaign, Adam Bouska. Additional celebrity appearances will be announced at a later date.

In addition to a presentation of the Bud Light Young Business Professionals Scholarship, four major awards will be presented, including the Raytheon Community Advancement Award, Corporate Partner of the Year, Outstanding Fundraiser and Business of the Year. Red Carpet Press Arrivals and cocktail reception will start at 5 p.m., with the dinner and awards ceremony scheduled to run from 6 to 9 p.m. The cost to attend is $100 per ticket, and tickets can be purchased on LAGLCC’s official Web site, www.laglcc.org.

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(Photo credit: Nathan Barr and Lisbeth Scott)

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TrueBloodNet.com EXCLUSIVE Interview with Nathan Barr and Lisbeth Scott!

September 9, 2009

Nathan Barr and Lisbeth Scott True Blood Music take_me_home_shoot_4We here are TrueBloodNet.com recently had the honor and privilege to interview the talented Nathan Barr and Lisbeth Scott to discuss with them their latest video of the haunting and beautiful rendition of “Take Me Home“. Both Nathan and Lisbeth took the time to discussed with us in great detail the creative process that is involved in creating the beautiful scores that we experience each week on True Blood.  We were also treated to learn about about Lisbeth‘s “Hope is a Thing” project that she is currently involved with and its positive impact in music.

TBN.com: First we want to congratulate you on winning the BMI awards this year for your work on True Blood. Were you surprised on the phenomenal response from the fans to your music?

Nathan: Definitely. I was very surprised and how closely the fans were listening. Some cues that I wrote for various scenes I never thought anyone would ever hear, those often times those are the ones people are most interested in learning more about. It’s been a really amazing experience.

TBN.com: We’d be very interested in hearing some more about that.

Nathan: Well I can just give you one example, which is in one of the episodes in second season when Eric enters the basement where he’s holding Lafayette, a beat music when Eric opens the door from upstairs at Fangtasia and honestly when I saw it air I thought, “Wow that’s really loud no ones going to hear that” But then there were a few inquires into what that music was. It’s just nice to know that all that work that’s being done is really being noticed and appreciated by everyone. It’s great.

TBN.com: Oh we definitely heard that music! We were all very curious about it too.
The fans have been waiting for the release of your album, can you tell us what we can expect to hear, what kind of music?

Nathan: Yeah it’s all season one, nothing from season two. It’s about 45 minutes of music total. I believe it’s about 22 to 24 tracks, and includes the Sonata to Eric which is what Eric is listening to the bath tub. It also has “Take Me Home“, the original version as it appeared in the “Pie Cry scene” in episode 6 in season one. And then everything else is just score based. There’s a lot of Bill and Sookie‘s theme on there. There’s a lot of Jason and Amy’s V trippy music. There’s Tara and her mom’s music. There’s some of the very first cues from the first episode. It’s a really nice assortment of all the various themes.

TBN.com: That sounds good to us!

Nathan: I think I tried to pick everything based on what I thought was most listenable and based on what response we got from fans.

TBN.com: So really you got some feedback and it s turning into a back and forth.

Nathan: Oh yea and that was nice.

TBN.com: Can you tell us a little bit about the song that was featured in the music video that was just shot on Monday?

Nathan Barr True Blood MusicNathan: Sure I can. Actually, I can start and Lisbeth can finish. It was called “Take Me Home” and Lisbeth wrote the beautiful lyrics and she can tell you about her inspiration there. Basically when we watched Episode 6 there was this scene which had Sookie sitting at her table crying, finally letting go of all her grief for her Grandmother, where she eats her Grandmother’s Pie. In that scene they had put in something, I think, from “Oh Brother Where Art Thou’ and watching the scene, well it’s the ultimate kind of scene that a composer, musician looks for because obviously there aren’t going to be many sound effects when it’s just her at her kitchen table eating pie. So it’s a real wonderful moment to feature the music. So I asked Alan if he would let me take a stab at a song there. I sat down and wrote the melody on the cello and then scored the scene and then Lisbeth came in and she can tell you about her contribution.

Hi Lisbeth:

Lisbeth: Nathan told me that there was this wonderful opportunity for the song and as soon as I saw the scene and felt the whole emotion behind it I immediately started getting ideas for the lyrics. Nathan‘s melody was so clear in that direction anyway so, we wrote it. In an hour or two.

Nathan: Yes, pretty quickly. So tell them about your inspiration for the lyrics because they’re really beautiful.

Lisbeth: Well, let’s see, several different things, the whole idea behind it was the concept of going home and are we at home with ourselves and are we at home with each other. And the concept of when we pass on to another place we’re actually going home to the original place that we came from. And what brings us there, is it love? Is it our concept of love? Is it our concept of God or spirit? Our concept of ourselves in the world. So to me what started happening was that there were images that kept playing in my head as I was watching the scene and hearing Nathan‘s music so I just started putting together those images and the lyrics just came out of that.

TBN.com: Very nice and the lyrics are very touching to me personally so…

Lisbeth: Good, I’m glad. That’s what I wanted.

TBN.com: When and where will the music video be available?

Lisbeth: The video will be available September 1st and we are busy editing it right now and we had a real beautiful, wonderful day shooting on Monday and I think it’s going to be quite extraordinary and it also features a new remix of the song which is fun too.

Nathan: The word is that it’s going to be on my site on Nathanbarr.com and Lizbethscott.com. If people want to see the video they’re going to have to go to my site or Lisbeth‘s site.

TBN.com: What was the most challenging aspect in creating the video?

Nathan Barr True Blood Music and Lisbeth Scott take_me_home_shoot_3Lisbeth: Probably recording a new version of the song. We had no idea what it would sound like. And filming a video all in 10 hours, that was …people looked at us cross eyed when we said we were going to do that, but I knew it would work and it did. Everyone was very focused and organized and it just couldn’t have gone smoother. It was a great day. Originally when we did the first version of the song, and Nathan feel free to add anything, we had a particular instrumentation in mind and when we played it, it didn’t work right. So at that point we all looked at each other and said “Okay now what do we do?”

Nathan: I had brought another instrument with me in the car, so I just ran out the car, got it, came in and played and all of the sudden everything came together. It was a Harmonium.

TBN.com: Oh, I don’t think I know what that is?

Nathan: It’s an Indian instrument and it’s like an organ that you pump with your hands. You use your left hands to pump the bellows which passes the air over the reeds and then you play with your right hand on the key board.

So does it have kind of a bag pipey effect or….

Nathan: Yeah, yeah kind of .

Lisbeth: It’s very meditative and it really fills the space. It’s like a drum sound almost

TBN.com: That sounds wonderful.

Lisbeth: Yeah it’s really cool.

TBN.com: The next thing we would like to ask is we know you have an extensive knowledge in various exotic instruments as you just mentioned the human bone trumpet. And…what is a dismantled piano?

Nathan: People have been playing the inside of the piano by putting paper clips or wood or different things on the strings or banging the strings or plucking the strings. People have been doing that for years. But I have a Steinway Grand Piano and I didn’t want to get in there with hammers or anything. I thought I’d leave it nice the way it is. So I bought an upright piano from the man that restored my Steinway and then I said is there any way we could cut it in half so all I have is the harp? That’s the inside of the instrument with all the strings. So he literally took a band saw and chopped the thing in half and got rid of all the keys. At that point it was really like a big harp and I can get in there with a hammer and bang on it or pluck it and it has a really nice sound. It’s an easier way to make those sounds than to do it with a piano that still has the keys.

Nathan Barr True Blood Music nathan_barr_4_studioTBN.com: And you said also you have a glass harmonica on your site. Is that sort of like Tibetan singing bowls?

Nathan: Yes, it’s similar. Tibetan singing bowls, as you probably know, are not glass they are some sort of metal or something.

Lisbeth: They are metal or crystal.

Nathan: And basically a glass harmonica was an instrument invented by Benjamin Franklin during his lifetime. As a matter of fact he says it was his favorite invention of all the inventions he created in his lifetime. And it’s basically the concept of if you run your finger along the rim of a wine glass it makes a tone. He thought that was such a beautiful, beautiful sound and that it was a little bit awkward to play because you had to get different size wine glasses and then set them on the table and then move around the table with your hand in order to play them. He had the idea, because he obviously noticed the bigger the wine glass the lower the pitch, so he just had glass blown into certain pitches like on a key board and then he nested them inside each other and put them on a rod and turned them on their side and put a wheel on it and you just peddle it. In his days peddle it, now it’s a quiet motor. So all those glasses spin together and then that way it’s laid out like a key board and you just play. You just touch your finger to the Glass and that makes the sound.

TBN.com: So because they are all linked together do they also harmonize even if you’re only playing one of the glasses?

Nathan: Exactly, absolutely. You have to touch them but it’s really laid out grammatically like a piano so you can play up to 10 note chords if you want.

TBN.com: Wow, I bet you that sounds beautiful!

Nathan: It does. You can actually hear it. I use it in Season One in the scene where we first flash back and see Sookie with her brother at the picnic with her parents and they realize she has a special power. If you listen in that scene there’s an Air Monica along with the piano so it does show up intermittently within the show.

TBN.com: Does every character have a different style of music when you’re doing True Blood or is it influenced by the type of scene?

Nathan: Yeah, definitely. You’re right on it. It’s definitely based on the character. Alan and I didn’t even have to talk about it. We just knew when watching the pilot that we needed something really special musically for Bill and Sookie, for their love scene. So Bill and Sookie have that love theme, and then Sookie has a listening theme: which is a piano. So whenever she’s listening, or most of the time she’s listening, there’s a piano pattern that plays.

Nathan Barr True Blood MusicTBN.com: This is when she’s listening to voices in her head?

Nathan: Yes Mind reading, yup. And Bill has that low Cello lament feel that we played the first time when Sookie goes over to the Rattray’s trailer and sees all the damage and destruction and realizes the power of Bill. And that plays there so I would say Bill and Sookie‘s theme are two of the most predominate themes through both seasons. But then Eric has a theme, Lafayette has a theme, Tara and her mom have a theme. It’s absolutely very dramatically based. Even Maryann while she doesn’t have a theme per se she definitely has a sound. I have this toy saltry like a harp and whenever you hear that, it’s Maryann on camera

TBN.com: So it sounds to me like you’re assigning instruments to each character?

Nathan: In some cases it’s instruments and in some cases there’s a lot of overlap because the heart of the score is really cello and guitar. There are certainly several characters that get scores that are performed on those instruments but then there are also instruments assigned to certain characters. Like Jason and Amy whenever they are tripping on V that’s a petal steel guitar and a Bone guitar together..

TBN.com: And going back to the song “Take Me Home“…you mentioned that you did a remix of that song. Can you tell us more about that? How it was remixed?

Lisbeth: Well let’s see… there was three mixes of that song. There was Nathan’s original version that we did that appeared in the show. And that was the one that Nathan did with the Cello and guitar and voice. And then there was an acapella version that I did right after that because I loved the song so much. That was just released straight to itunes. And when we got together to do the video a whole new version came up because we brought in the drummer, Quinn, to play with us so it’s a beautiful original sounding very unique drum that Quinn made plus a couple that he didn’t, a harmonium and then Nathan‘s playing Cello in a beautiful melodic way but also a cicadas. And then there’s the voice on top of that. So it starts out with a beautiful Cello Solo and it builds from there. And it’s quite different and quite beautiful. It’s got really a very uplifting, joyous feel to it whereas the original was more haunting.

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TBN.com: And for the score, did you already have a score written up before you did the video or did you have to work on that for the video?

Lisbeth: I think there was nothing written up…

Nathan: Yes we had nothing written up.

Lisbeth: Yeah, nothing at all. We didn’t even know what we were going to do. That was the was the fun part and the scary part. We just went into the studio with instruments and we played and it came out great.

TBN.com: So that comes to my next questions when it comes to the process for developing songs for True Blood, is it a collaboration between the producers, the writers, the directors, developed months before the scene is shot or do they present to you the scripts and leave the creation of the music up to you?

Nathan: Song wise, I know that Alan has said before in his interviews, that he encourages writers to pick out music while they’re actually writing the episode to help set the musical tone of the show and so each show, episode wise, is the name of a song that then appears somewhere in the episode. I think that’s a real cool and unique thing that Alan has done. Other than that, usually we’ll watch the actual episode and see the scene and then write something for it. Then, for example, I wrote Sancto Erico that song when Eric is in the bath tub that was written after the scene was shot. When they shot it they weren’t listening to anything, it was just silent and so I wrote something that sounded kind of strange and foreign because Eric comes from this far away place and this world and then I also had to write something that was weird sounding because in that scene Bill looks and I think he says “What are you listening to?” And so that implied to me that it was something that had to be a little bit foreign to Bill‘s ears. So that’s why that song has a unique key flavor to it. So, song wise, that’s what happens. Score wise, 99 percent of the time they give me the locked episode and then I write, score to the locked episode. So I actually, I never write a note, nothing without having the scene right in front if me. I’m watching the scene and I just play along with the scene with an instrument and then I just start layering other instruments until it feels like it’s done.

TBN.com: And what do you mean by a locked episode?

Nathan: Locked Episode means that a picture has been signed off by Alan, HBO, everyone says picture wise this is the show, this is how it’s going to be aired.

TBN.com: So you’re just adding sound at that point?

Nathan: Yes, I’m just adding music at that point and there’s the sound department that is adding sound affects where needed and Gary Calamar, the music supervisor, is then adding songs for the interior of Merlotte‘s or if the character is listening to a song.

TBN.com: So the public type of music

Nathan: Exactly

Nathan Barr True Blood Music and Alan Ball Director and ProducerTBN.com: What do you think is the most challenging aspect of producing songs for TB?

Nathan: I don’t know if it’s challenging, it’s completely organic, Alan is such a generous person with his people. He really allows everyone leeway. He casts so well. Everyone in the show is cast so well whether it’s on the post production side with the music people or the actors that at that point you’re just letting them do their thing. He just sort of reigns them in here and there and gives them guidance and gets exactly what it is that’s right for the show. Challenging wise, this has been such a dream show it’s rarely challenging. It’s been really such a joy to work on. We’re all really in the same page creatively and when someone like Lisbeth comes in and writes lyrics, I don’t think you would say that is challenging.

Lisbeth: No I think the attitude and the feeling of the whole show that Nathan‘s describing extends to anyone who works on it because it’s really joyous and easy and organic to me any time I sing on the show with Nathan it’s always very easy and floes quite nicely.

It’s really got to be one of the greatest shows on television to work on and I think anyone who’s worked on it agrees, It all trickles down from Alan I think. He has brought these amazing people together who are lovely people to work with who are all really talented. It’s just pretty rare to have it to the extent we have it on TB. I mean it’s just like a joy.

TBN.com: Well it’s a joy for us to watch and listen to as well. So I heard Lisbeth say that doing the lyrics is organic too. Lisbeth have you done just the one song then?

Lisbeth: I haven’t written lyrics but I have sang on the “Sancto Erico” song that Nathan has mentioned a few times and I have sung quite a bit on the various scenes that Nathan wants to use my voice on.

Nathan: Actually if you guys listened to Episode 9 which just aired, the final scene with Godric on the roof top..

TBN.com: Oh yes the best scene yet this season…

Nathan: I agree I actually have got to say I think that’s my favorite scene in both seasons I just love that, I just cry every time….

TBN.com: Well it doesn’t make me cry like the Pie scene but it’s close.

Nathan: Yes it’s close, but that scene has Lisbeth singing in it at the end of if you watch it. Good vocals. No lyrics, but just the melody. It just added such a beautiful, beautiful delicateness to Godric in that scene.

Nathan Barr and Lisbeth Scott True Blood Music take_me_home_shoot_4TBN.com: Oh yeah that whole scene is so well put together and the music was definitely a huge part of it in evincing the emotions I think

Nathan: Well thank you.

TBN.com: Both of you have worked on writing scores for various film projects. Is there a difference for creating scores for large movie productions verses a smaller show like TB?

Nathan: You want to talk about that Lisbeth?

Lisbeth: I’ll let you talk more about it but I’ll say my answer first, and you’ll probably agree with me. In general there’s much more time on a film. But I’ll let Nathan answer because he’s spent so much time in both worlds.

Nathan: Working on a show of this quality is so great because it’s not network television obviously, it’s cable and there’s huge difference between schedule in cable television shows and network television shows. Network Television shows, I have a lot of friends who write for a lot of great shows and they have literally 3 days to compose and record 30, 40, 50, 60 minutes of music. It’s just so hard to do . With HBO’s “True Blood”, the season usually starts out where we have as much as 2 to 3 weeks to turn around an episode and then in the end I think the tightest I had was like a week. That’s really, really cushy especially since the most music I’ve ever had in a episode of True Blood is 35 minutes. The least I ever had was about 12 minutes. So, that’s one of the big differences between features and TV. The other big difference, which is actually one of the real wonderful things about working for a TV show, with movies you have 90 minutes to say everything you’re ever going to say about those characters in a musical way and in TV the arc of the characters is often one or two seasons so it really forces you to try and come up with new variations of the music and grow with the characters throughout the seasons as their characters do. That’s a big difference. That’s probably the biggest difference between TV and features, just the amount of time you spend with the characters and therefore the music you write for them.

TBN.com: When you say you grow with the characters are you talking about the tonal changes in the music you present for them or are there other ways to resolve it?

Nathan: Yeah there are other ways too, part of it is just, practically speaking, the amount of time we spend with Bill and Sookie in True Blood in Season one and season two. It is substantial. If I just took the first cue I ever wrote when he says, “Take your hair clip out.” which is the first time we hear Bill and Sookie’s theme, if I just literally played that cue over and over every time we see Bill and Sookie together, people would be ready to shoot themselves. I think the way you avoid that is by changing the keys, changing the instruments a little bit, and I even introduced in the last episode of season 2, I introduce a sort of subtle variation of Bill and Sookie’s theme since they’re going to new places in their relationship and that changes it up a little bit.

TBN.com: True Blood fans get a chance to see you do some acting in a cameo for episode 6. How was that, to do the acting instead of just being behind the scenes?

Nathan Barr True Blood Music ActingNathan: Well first of all, I would never call what I do acting. I just sat there and played the piano and it was really fun to be there on the set. I actually experience the show like all the fans do: on my television set in my studio when I’m writing. So it was surreal and it was nice to cross that line and actually go to the set. Alexander Skarsgard was there and Anna Paquin was there. It was cool to be a part of that and see what it’s all about and it was fun. Although I have no aspirations to do that, it’s so hard so that’s as far as I think I’ll go.

TBN.com: Well I’m sure all of the actors think what you do is extremely hard too.

Nathan: Yeah I guess.

TBN.com: So I guess both of you guys are fans of the show and each one of you, what is your favorite episode or character from the show?

Lisbeth: That’s easy. Sookie, definitely, because I just can relate to so many different aspects of her personality and her extreme sensitivity in life. I’ve always been very sensitive in many different ways and it’s so wonderful the way her character is cemented in a way that you understand the inner workings these gifts that she was born with and what it does to her and how it effects her approach towards life and towards other people, she’s definitely the one.

TBN.com: Do you have a favorite episode?

Lisbeth: Let’s see, Nathan will tell you that it’s a little bit challenging for me to watch any one episode all the way through, although I do, because I’m so squeamish. I spoke to someone from a fan site who said, I am too, every time the blood scenes come on I have to close my eyes.

TBN.com: Yeah I have a friend that always watches it on, On Demand because she can only handle so much at one time

Lisbeth: I know, the way they do it is so perfect and so beautiful. Let’s see, really liked the episode where Godric’s on the roof top. So far has been my favorite because it just reached a level of emotion that really got to me and I thought the writing was beautiful and the whole art was beautiful.

TBN.com: That touched a lot of people.

Nathan: Oh yeah it so did. I think, for me, it would be really hard to point at a single character and say that’s my favorite character but I have so many favorite moments in the show. Therefore these would be among my favorite characters and again Eric and Sookie and Godric on the rooftop, I love anything with Lafayette. Nelson is just amazing and, I know and you guys probably know this, that in the book his character is gone pretty quickly and I remember people on the show saying when we saw this guy act there is no way this character is going anywhere any time soon. He’s got to stick around.

Nathan Barr True Blood MusicTBN.com: Oh I think we, the fans, would have rioted had he actually been the one in the car.

Nathan: Exactly, he’s just so amazing. And I really loved Jason and Amy, those moments. I really thought, as dysfunctional as that relationship was, I thought it was such a touching story about two people trying to relate. They were both just so clueless in their own way but they found some way to connect. That was fun to write to. Then Hoyt and Jessica too, I love their characters and how they interact. There are so many great characters.

TBN.com: Which leads to my next question, which is sort of like a fun question to ask, if you could play an ongoing role in TB what type of character would you be?

Nathan: You mean what specific character?

TBN.com: No, I mean like what type: a vampire, a shape-shifter or a werewolf, a human?

Nathan: Without even thinking about it I would be a shape-shifter.

Lisbeth: I was going to say the same thing.

Nathan: I just think when Sam, becomes an Owl and flies away, or when he becomes a dog and he’s running through the woods, all that stuff just seems really amazingly magical and cool.

TBN.com: Lisbeth can you talk about your fund raising effort on “Hope is a Thing“?

Lisbeth: Sure, I am releasing a new project on October 20th that’s a solo project. After we did the video, Nathan, I was thinking it would be fun to put this new version of “Take Me Home” on it. But it’s a project I’ve been working on for 2 years and I’m very excited about. It’s a solo project, it lives in the pop world but it has some classical and some world influences on it. I really want to give it a huge launch to the world because I feel really strongly about the music. I have been releasing for several years on my own label and so what I’ve done for this project is set up a donation part, it’s called “Hope is a Thing” and I’m basically reaching out to my fans and to my community. Promoting this album in a way that a big label would but to help me do it as a solo artist on my own. There are very many different gifts and perks and rewards that people get for donating because I am so thankful. I was just telling Nathan, I just sent out a very small email this morning and I’ve already got a bunch of responses and donations so it’s really exciting. People get free CD’s and free downloads and homes concerts and free tickets to my shows and free tickets to celebrity appearances that I do. It’s really an exciting, grass roots, way of unifying the artist and the fan base and I’m really excited about it. Tell everyone to check out www.hopeisathing.com!

Of course a portion of the proceeds go to this wonderful organization that I’ve been working with recently called “Education for Music”. Their main offices are in Los Angeles and New York, they bring music instruction to underprivileged children. And the wonderful thing about the way they do it is that they don’t just provide an after school program that some kids can’t go to because of sports or other obligations. They go into the actual classrooms and provide a very consistent weekly class for the entire term for all the students so it’s a very unusual program. It’s very powerful and a huge success with the students that they have reached. I know Nathan would probably agree with me, music has just given me my life in a way that nothing else has. It’s really exciting for me give that possibility to other children who are perhaps in challenging situations right now.

Lisbeth Scott True Blood SingerTBN.com: So aside from the donations, are you also working with them in other ways?

Lisbeth: Yes, I’m doing some concert appearances and some lectures for them about my work on other films that I have worked on like Drac and Narnia and Munich. I’ve created a whole presentation that demonstrates to children, what is the scene like without music, or without a vocal, how does the vocal changes it or how does a song change the scene and I’ve done many of these presentations and it’s so fun and it’s always a surprise. I mean imagine TB without the music. So it’s really fun to the children’s eyes in that way to this entire world that they know nothing about.

TBN.com: Do you twitter and if so do you want the fans to know who you are?

Nathan: Yes, we just started one! It’s composerbarr. Add me!

Lisbeth: I do twitter a bit, my Twitter name is Lisbethscott

TBN.com: What about Facebook or myspace?

Nathan: I’m on MySpace and I’m happy to share with anyone.

Lisbeth: I have those as well and I have a Facebook fan page, and a YouTube page with all the latest videos. Please check them out!

TBN.com: I think that’s it….and thank you!

Nathan: It’s so exciting to be a part of a show with fans that truly love the show and care, it’s our pleasure.

UPDATE: There will be a live signing at Dark Delicacies book store in Burbank from 1pm – 3pm with both Nathan and Lisbeth! Check out the link below!

Links:

Nathan Barr’s Website

Lisbeth Scott’s Website

Nathan’s Myspace Page

Lisbeth’s YouTube Page

Hope is a Thing

Dark Delicacies

(Photo credits: Nathan Barr and Lisbeth Scott)

Transcriptions: Cyrenna

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True Blood Soundtrack CD Now In Stores

September 9, 2009

true-blood-soundtrackFinally the True Blood Soundtrack CD is now in stores! You can pick up your copy of the soundtrack featuring Nathan Barr‘s musical scores from Alan Ball‘s hit HBO TV vampire series True Blood from amazon.com or download it from iTunes True Blood Original Score
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As a special treat to all True Blood fans both Nathan Barr and Lisbeth Scott will be appearing at Dark Delicacies in Burbank, CA this Sunday, Sept. 13th, at 1pm signing the CDs.  Along with Nathan Barr and Lisbeth Scott music composers Bear McCreary (Battlestar Galactica, Caprica, Eureka, Rest Stop: Don’t Look Back, and Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles) and composing duo Nicole Buetti and Dirk Montapert (Dead of Night) will be in attendance.

If you are unable to attend or don’t live nearby or in the US, don’t worry.

You can order your signed copies online at the Dark Delicacies website and have them mailed to you.  Be aware however that you can only order signed copies of the Battlestar Galactica Season 4 soundtrack and the True Blood soundtrack online.  It seems to have McCreary sign the other CD’s mentioned above, you have to attend the event.

The event details are:

Dark Delicacies
4213 W. Burbank Blvd., Burbank, CA 91505
Sunday, September 13th, 2008, 1pm

The soundtrack includes :

1. Take Me Home Vocal by Lisbeth Scott (2:33) ( see new video below)
2. Hairclip (1:45)
3. Bill’s Lament (1:07)
4. Gran’s Story (1:51)
5. Bill’s Entrance (1:28)
6. First Taste (1:22)
7. Tara In The Pool (1:23)
8. Tripping (1:42)
9. Tara And Mother (1:06)
10. Grieve to Grave to Groove (3:15)
11. The Tribunal (2:32)
12. Amy’s Goodbye (2:12)
13. Bill And Sookie Together (2:24)
14. Priapism (2:15)
15. More Than You Can Imagine (1:43)
16. The Cabin (5:22)
17. The Funeral (2:36)
18. Sancto Erico Vocals by Lisbeth Scott & Nathan Barr (1:39)
19. Bill And Sookie’s Reunion (1:23)
20. Jason And Amy (2:17)
21. Love Theme Piano by Lisbeth Scott (2:57)

To order your signed CD go to Dark Delicacies and scroll down to the True Blood Soundtrack CD to place your order.  So what are y0ou wanting for order you copy today or if you can go meet Nathan Barr and Lisbeth Scott in person at Dark Delicacies on Sunday, September 13th, 2008, 1pm.


SOURCES:

nathanbarr.com

amazon.com

scifiscoop.com

darkdel.com

(Photo credit:  HBO Inc.)

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