“It’s been 24 years since Jellyfish last harmonized, 22 since Imperial Drag last rocked, 21 since The Moog Cookbook synthesized, 15 since TV Eyes electrified, 11 since Malibu computerized, and 10 since my last solo album, CATNIP DYNAMITE, had you all singing and drumming along unashamedly behind the steering wheel of your car. And still, my fans are right here with me, waiting patiently in support of my next move.” – ROGER JOSEPH MANNING JR.
Well, fans, the time has finally come for that next move! ROGER JOSEPH MANNING JR. will release not one, but three pieces of music on May 18 as part of an elaboratePledgeMusic campaign.
A four-song solo EP of brand new songs, GLAMPING, will be available on CD, purple vinyl and digital download. He’s also re-releasing a Deluxe Edition (CD/digital download) of his 2006 LAND OF PURE IMAGINATION album, which will include three bonus tracks: “What You Don’t Know About The Girl,” “Sleep Children,” and “’Til We Meet Again.” These songs were previously included in the album’s counterpart, SOLID STATE WARRIOR, which was only released in Japan. Last, but not least, MANNING’s 2009 CATNIP DYNAMITE will be available as a CD and digital download.
The extensive PledgeMusic campaign offers fans a wide selection of exclusive and one-of-a-kind items from MANNING’s personal archives, including outfits worn during his time with Jellyfish. Most notably, the vintage 1960 pants, cape and parasol outfit seen on the cover of their BELLYBUTTON debut album and “The King Is Half Undressed” music video, as well as the crushed velvet zebra 1970s dress coat from the “That Is Why” video. Also available will be promotional materials from his Japanese tours, signed and decorated handwritten lyric sheets, and four different keyboards used throughout his career. All pre-orders come with the AccessPass, which will give fans exclusive updates.
“I’m doing it this way as a big experiment,” MANNING explains. “One of the reasons I’ve been most excited about jumping back into doing more original music, and getting back in the saddle again after 10 years of various life trajectories, is due to sites like PledgeMusic, and how they help projects like mine come to fruition. These kinds of Pledge campaigns seem to do really well for a certain level of artist — and this really, really seems to meet my needs. We had no middle-ground fans in Jellyfish. They completely understood what we were doing. I’ve found my fans to be the most loyal fans out there, and that’s a worldwide thing. I look forward to seeing their support for this EP, and how they’re going to react to all of the extras I plan on offering through PledgeMusic.”
About the songwriting process behind GLAMPING, MANNING says, “It’s very natural and very gratifying for me. I like the architecture and assembly process of it all — getting a song from its raw form of acoustic piano and vocal into this whole other world. I love that process, even though it can be very time-consuming for someone like me. It’s like putting together a sonic jigsaw puzzle.”
Upon its release, The Big Takeover described CATNIP DYNAMITE as “…a perfectly strong statement…” While Goldmine hailed, “With CATNIP DYNAMITE, MANNING acrobatically flips from genre to genre, employing classical elements, like strings and such, and the electric-guitar crunch of power-pop to marvelous effect, while building up around it all an ornate architecture of piano and other kinds of keyboards.”
About ROGER JOSEPH MANNING JR.:
ROGER JOSEPH MANNING JR. has enjoyed a long and fruitful career as a touring keyboardist, most notably with Beck (for the past 22 years), session player, arranger, and producer. His arranging career began in 1989 when he began arranging string, brass, wind and vocal ensembles for his first band, Jellyfish, on Virgin Records which he co-founded. He co-wrote and co-produced the two Virgin releases, BELLYBUTTON and SPILT MILK. Out of the ashes of Jellyfish arose his second co-founded project, Imperial Drag, on Sony’s WORK Group label, from 1994-97, which saw overwhelming overseas success, particularly in England and Japan. From 1995-97, he co-founded the all-vintage electronic duo known as The Moog Cookbook. This group was started solely as a means of having a forum to express its love for the bygone era of vintage synthesizers and exotic keyboards. Ultimately, it became his calling card for longtime friend and collaborator, Beck. At this time, MANNING began his almost 20-year and still-active relationship as Beck’s sideman, touring the world and recording upwards of five critically acclaimed albums, including the 2014 album, MORNING PHASE, on which MANNING both played keyboards and sang, won 2015 Grammy® Awards in both the “Best Rock Album” and “Album Of The Year” categories. By 1997, MANNING’s career as a freelance session keyboardist, songwriter, arranger and background vocalist was in full swing. Over the last 20 years, he has contributed keyboards to hundreds of pop/rock albums, played on numerous films and TV soundtracks, composed for commercials and radio spots, enjoyed a long run as a remixer, and toured extensively with other artists. Over the past decade, he has been involved with many large-scale orchestral arranging projects, including Nate Ruess’ first band, The Format, and his second band, fun.. His success with Nate Ruess’ projects reawakened MANNING’s love for arranging and more offers soon followed. His arranging career re-launched in 2012 when he was asked to work on Nate’s duet with Pink! for the 2012 smash, “Learn to Love Again,” produced by Grammy® Award-winning producer Jeff Bhasker. Later that year, MANNING was invited by producer Justin Meldal-Johnsen to arrange on Paramore’s double-Platinum selling 2012 self-titled release. Most recently, he contributed four orchestral arrangements to Morrissey’s latest offering, LOW IN HIGH SCHOOL. In the past years, MANNING has contributed to albums by Adele, Eric Clapton, HAIM, The Killers, Johnny Cash, Roger Waters, Diana Ross, Marilyn Manson, Lana Del Rey, Glen Campbell, Fitz & The Tantrums, Neil Diamond, Interpol, Blink 182, and Cheap Trick.
PledgeMusic is a global next-generation music company and fan marketplace dedicated to and enabling artists to build communities, harvest new fans, create exciting ways to connect fans into every promotional opportunity from pre-order through touring and “down” cycles, while presenting their creative vision far beyond just “click and play.” The company has offices in New York, Los Angeles, London, and Nashville.