I am Podington Bear.
In the recent past I’ve been brief with the posts, but I suspect it will take a few words to get through this one. If you’re just joining us from Rocketboom or HUSH Records or someplace else and have come to see what the fuss is about, I hope you’ll feel welcome to kick back and rock that player over there on the right for a bit, even if the urge to go check your Facebook or something in a few seconds is overwhelming. Consider the launching the Pop-Up P Bear Player. If you haven’t seen this video, it might be of interest:
Now then. Hi, my character name is Podington Bear. My given name is Chad Crouch. But I suspect I’ll always be Podington Bear. I’m too far in. The short of it is that I made a bunch of songs over the past 18 months, gave em’ away to whoever would listen, then archived it all in a box set recently released by the label I founded here in Portland a decade ago, HUSH Records. So there was a little posturing involved. A little make-believe. No names, no connections to start. Then voila, “signed”. I signed myself to my own label. I doubt that anyone would feel particularly duped by that, but just in case, sorry if it takes some of the shine off. The music remains the same, yes?
So, I just want say a few things and then be done.
- I’m going to keep making instrumental music. It will still be attributed to Podington Bear. I won’t start plastering my face on record covers and stuff.
- I’ll probably make music and sing over it again. Not sure what that will be called or when, but I kind of miss singing.
- I definitely won’t match the rate of output of the past 18 months, and intend to diversify the musical offerings, as with the recent Sound of Picture podcast and blog.
- I’ll probably invest a little more time in beat production on future pop stuff. Play some guitar again. Maybe get a little help from my talented musician friends.
- Why the ruse, you ask? In part it was like any other gimmick, designed to get a few seconds more attention. [I’m told gimmick has a cheap connotation. I use the word in the sense that any entertainment boiled down is a gimmick: you can’t amuse or entertain people without their attention in the first place. Cartoon bears simply have a history of being very approachable. In the very least I was unconsciously aware of this when the tiny lightning bolt went off in my mind.] But, beyond that Podington Bear was/is my power animal (That’s a reference to the wonderful Thumbsucker film) shielding me in my creative state. Lastly, it was a research and development experiment for the business of music, unfettered from the history and business model of HUSH Records. Adaptation requires experimentation.
- And worth noting: This unveiling is prompted in part because of my cover being blown anyway, at least temporarily, to writers and fans who imported The End CD into the ubiquitous iTunes application. The user-driven database Gracenote CDDB listed “Poddington Bear Aka Chad Crouch” in the composer field, flashing briefly for those who might take note. While correct on one count, it failed to be precisely right. (The correct spelling of Podington requires only one D, not coincidentally like the popular portable music device.)
I think that’s about it. If you got this far thanks for reading. I hope you’ll find something to like ’round here today.
Oh and hey: if you do, enter your email up there so I can keep in touch.
About: Chad Crouch founded the HUSH records label in 1998 and has directed it since. His previous recordings include four albums with his band Blanket Music (2000-2007), one album under his given name (1997), and one EP under the name Toothfairy (2006). HUSH will be celebrating its 10th anniversary at The Aladdin Theatre in Portland with Laura Gibson, Loch Lomond, and Nick Jaina on July 12.