New Disruptors 64: Sisters Are Doin’ It for Themselves with The Doubleclicks

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Angela and Aubrey Webber are the musical group The Doubleclicks, bringing geeky music to nerdy folk. The sisters never intended to form a band, but when Aubrey joined her sister Angela in Portland a few years ago, her cello coupled with Angela's singing caused enough of a stir for them to join forces and write songs about Dungeons & Dungeons, the Curiosity rover, and not dissing the geek girl. We talk about all this and their absurdly successful Kickstarter campaign that just closed.

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Things we mention in this episode:

As with so many Internet-friendly musicians, Jonathan Coulton was a big influence. Musician Marian Call is a buddy of theirs. Aubrey attended the Berklee College of Music in Boston, where their father teaches. Angela has an inordinate number of cat keyboards. Ben Folds Five recorded Whatever and Ever Amen in a house, not a studio, which mildly discomfited the Klezmatics, according to Folds. Steve Martin's autobiography of his stand-up career, Born Standing Up, explains his long journey to be an overnight success. Portland has a unicyclist who plays "The Imperial March" on a set of flaming bagpipes while wearing a Darth Vader mask.

Here's the Dungeons & Dragons song that started this whole chain of events off. Paton Oswalt declared the end of geek culture in 2010 because it had been co-opted: "The problem with the Internet, however, is that it lets anyone become otaku about anything instantly." MetaFilter are the most "delightful and most pedantic" commenters on the Internet; it's run by the Webbers' fellow Portlandian Matt Haughey.

Principal Skinner says, "We need a name that's witty at first, but that seems less funny each time you hear it." That name was the Be Sharps.

The Doubleclicks performed their Curiosity song, "Imposter," at XOXO. The sweetest thing is that Angela forgets the words at some point, and the audience buoys her along. Song Fu is a kind of writing prompt for songwriters. Ken Plume ran the contest.

The New Disruptors is a podcast about people who make art, things, or connections finding new ways to reach an audience and build a community. Glenn Fleishman is the host, and he talks with new guests every week. Find older episodes at the podcast's home.

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