Songs in the Key of Z
-N E W S-
updated: Apr-05
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UK singer-songwriter Brona McVittie has composed and recorded a gorgeous tune called "Outsiders," which she says was "inspired by Songs in the Key of Z." This is not an outsider performance -- Brona's voice has the graceful, angelic purity of Linda Perhacs -- but it does pay tribute to outsider artists she has come to love and admire.

Another song posted at the site, "Henry Percy," pays tribute to a little-known UK outsider. Percy claims to have written most of the great music of the 20th century that's been wrongfully (he says) attributed to others, and that he's been robbed of credit and revenue for these works. His claims include The Warsaw Concerto (composed in 1941; Percy was born in 1940); the scores for Breakfast at Tiffany's and Dr. Zhivago; all of Buddy Holly's hits, as well as those of The Bee Gees, Elvis, Sinatra, and the Spice Girls; and to have invented "the Rock and Roll concept." Percy asks for your support until he manages to settle his claims. Brona's lovely song presents his case.

The Clouds was an "avant-gospel" project originating in the backwoods of Alabama, created as a one-off mini-album and installation by artist-in-residence Stuart Hyatt, of Indianapolis. Stuart worked with local gospel choirs and amateur performers at the Coleman Arts Center in late 2003, wrote all the songs, and played most instruments. He then privately pressed 300 copies, which were given away to participants. The album has now been issued on Innova in a signed and numbered limited edition CD with corrugated cardboard packaging handmade by Hyatt. It was produced for first commercial release by Irwin Chusid.

Free download of "No, You Can't Take Them" by The Clouds: here

This song features Kinterbish School students grades 6-8 and the Union Chapel Male Chorus.

The original Clouds project - info & photos:

Written by Dennis P. Eichhorn
Illustrated by J.R. Williams

Larry Wild Man Fischer is an outsider music legend. He is a former street busker who was first recorded in the late 1960s by Frank Zappa, and later by Rhino Records. Fischer's exploits and unique accomplishments are lovingly chronicled in this collection of cartoon stories, essays, and never-before-seen photos. Published by Top Shelf Productions. Details: here

"Completely in the Dark"

Innova Records presents the first-ever commercial collection of recordings by JUDSON FOUNTAIN, a man often referred to as "The Ed Wood, Jr., of Radio Drama." Produced by Irwin Chusid and Barbara Economon, the album, entitled Completely In the Dark, features horror stories starring, written and produced by Judson Fountain the late 1960s and early 1970s. The collection includes:

1) The Old Woman of Haunted House
2) The Garbage Can From Thailand
3) Two Boys in a Haunted House
4) Granny, Sing No More
5) Hallowe'en Night
6) My Next Door Neighbor, Is A Wicked Witch
7) The Castle of Lo Sein
8) Captain Hale

For more info:

Well, check the OLD News page too!



Irwin Chusid has been hosting programs of outsider music videos at colleges, galleries, museums, and clubs throughout the US. His presentation includes a discussion of the genre, a program of 60-75 minutes of video clips, and Q&A. If you would like to inquire about having such a program at your venue, email: Irwin Chusid.


Killer Pictures is developing the Shaggs' life story into a major motion picture. (Contrary to rumors, Tom Cruise's production company did not obtain these rights; they lost in the bidding.)

The Shaggs, a trio of sisters named Wiggin from Fremont, NH, are considered icons of aboriginal rock. Their 1969 LP, Philosophy of the World, has been universally acclaimed as one of the earliest and finest examples of outsider music in album form.

New York-based Katherine Dieckmann has written the script and will direct. Casting is underway, and filming is expected to begin in Fall of 2005.

Join the Outsider Music Mailing List

Though it's not directly affiliated with SONGS IN THE KEY OF Z, Lang Thompson's Outsider Music list was inspired by it, as well as by the increasing prominence of Outsider Music and Thompson's longtime passion for outre sonics.

You can subscribe and participate at the following link: here

Thompson writes, "The Outsider Music Mailing List is devoted to those songs that make you stop in dumbfounded wonder. Drawing partly on the art world concept of outsider art (or art brut, naive art, take your pick), outsider music includes all manner of incompetent but sincere recordings, music by the mentally challenged, industry rejects, eccentrics, singing celebrities, lovable oddballs, and grandiose statements.  The list is to encourage discussion of these artists, news of findings and even trading of recordings."

You can subscribe to the Outsider Music List by sending a message to You'll get a reply requesting verification of the subscribed account, and then you'll be on the List. Archives of all previous correspondence to the List can be read at the site.


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