Some of you have already heard about this but I wanted to make it official and announce it formally to get the word out to everyone else. Effective... well, soon, I'll be dropping the name Sudden Death and begin recording and performing as Devo Spice. Nothing else will change. I will still be working with Thom "The Professor" Uliasz and everyone else I normally work with, and I will still be posting songs to The FuMP. The only difference will be in the artist credit on the song.
That's all you really need to know. What follows is an explanation as to why and all that jazz, so if you're in a hurry, bored, don't really care, or really need to leave to make it to that sale at Wal-Mart you can stop reading here. If you're curious read on.
I've been toying with this idea on and off for a few years now, and for one reason or another I've always decided not to follow through with it. Sometimes it was because I just had a hit song on Dr. Demento or something and didn't want to make a big change after a run of success. But usually it was because I was just lazy and didn't want to be bothered doing everything necessary to make the change. I'm working on all that stuff now- getting DevoSpice.com up and running, migrating my profile on The FuMP, convincing my groupies that I'm still the same guy, etc. It's not fun.
Now, as to why. I really think the name has been holding me back. Sudden Death started out as a group, but hasn't really been a group for many MANY years. I took the lead years ago, decided to do all the writing and recording myself and just call on the other guys for help as needed. When we launched The FuMP I got The Professor more involved with the music because I knew I would need help and that has worked out great. This has been the closest we've been to a group in years, but I still perform solo. This has resulted in me constantly having to explain to people at every show I do that yes, we're a group, sort of, but I perform solo, but use the group name when on stage. It gets old fast.
Then there's the name itself. It's meaningless. Dave "MC Squared", from the original trio, read the name of a 1975 action movie in TV Guide, and Scott "Baksai Nok" thought it had a nice ring to it. That's it. That's where the name came from. I never liked it. On top of that the name doesn't really reflect what I do. Sudden Death doesn't say comedy-rap. It says heavy metal, if anything. And, actually, there's a death metal band from Florida called Sudden Death who are fans of mine, which I think is neat.
Which brings me to my next point. There are literally dozens of other bands out there called Sudden Death, including at least one other comedy rapper. All these issues together mean that the name is not very memorable. It's really working against me. I can think of two instances off the top of my head where I was denied a gig because of the connotation of the name Sudden Death. Neither of those gigs would have made my career or anything, but I have to wonder what else I was passed over for simply because of the name.
Devo Spice is unique. It's my nickname and has been for years. It's me, so it does reflect my music better, and I really do think it'll be easier to market myself to bookers, the press, radio, and even the public. I won't have to explain anything. It's just me. Nerdcore/comedy rapper Devo Spice. Period.
The first thing I did when I was considering this was to ask my wife. Her response was "why didn't you do that years ago?" I should have, but see above. So I asked some other close friends and fans and the response was almost unanimous that I should do it. The deciding factor was The Professor's input because I didn't want to upset the guy who was making all that awesome music for me. Once he told me he was for it I decided to go for it. And finally, I heard from Dr. Demento and he said he "heartily endorses the name change."
I really do wish I had done this years ago. This is extraordinarily bad timing for me. I'm coming off a landmark year on Dr. Demento as the only artist in the history of the show to end the year with 3 of the top 4 songs. I just released a new album earlier this year, and I'm literally in the middle of a promotional campaign for it. 2 weeks ago I mailed radio edits to 60+ radio stations in some key markets and submitted my music to 800 or so internet outlets. I have to finish this campaign because I still have several hundred CDs in my basement to sell.
Thankfully I don't think I'll be starting from scratch here. I think most of my fans will follow me. For the few that get lost along the way or new ones who happen to stumble upon an old Sudden Death song I'll be keeping SuddenDeath.org set up and redirecting to the new DevoSpice.com once that is all finished. The songs on The FuMP that were released on Fatal Error will remain credited to Sudden Death, but anything after that (beginning with Bacon 2) will be recredited to Devo Spice.
And as I make these changes I have to say that it already feels more natural. I feel like I'm not trying to fool anybody anymore. The first thing I did was update my electronic press kit with SonicBids and, except for explaining why the albums are all by Sudden Death, things seemed to really click. It just felt right, and I've already come up with a couple cool image ideas to help market myself.
So hopefully I'm making the right decision here. Sudden Death has been a big part of my life for most of my life now, but I think it's time to finally get rid of the name that never really belonged.
Thanks for all your support over the years, and here's looking forward to many more years of continued success! And hopefully a lot more. :)