Skitz-O-Phonics

Pop goes the music

September 06, 2021 eArL (E.J.) Hamilton Season 1 Episode 19
Skitz-O-Phonics
Pop goes the music
Show Notes Transcript

A talented singer is trying to work with an off-beat music producer.
(Voice talents:  Kenneth Byrd.  E.J. Hamilton.  Kimberly Coburn)

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FADE IN:

INT. MUSIC STUDIO - DAY

A white music producer is busy working on some music when there's a KNOCK on the door.

PRODUCER J.

Come in.

In walks a black man. This is Lucas.

PRODUCER J.

Hey, you must be Lucas.

LUCAS

Yeah. Producer J?

PRODUCER J.

Just call me P.J.

LUCAS

Okay. Man, you got a nice studio here.

PRODUCER J.

I put a lot of money into it, it better be nice. Heard good things abut you. Paul said you had a nice pair of pipes on you.

LUCAS

I don't like to brag but I've been around, worked with a lot of people.

PRODUCER J.

Good good, I don't really like working with newbies. I just don't have the time you know what I mean.

LUCAS

Yeah I understand. Time is money.

PRODUCER J.

(trying to sound hip)

Ya feel me? So, you ready to make some beautiful music Luke-a-Duke?

LUCAS

It's just "Lucas." 

PRODUCER J.

Sorry man, my bad my bad my bad. You ready?

LUCAS

Yeah, let's here what you got.

PRODUCER J.

Cool cool cool. Now I've got this new song I want you to sing lead to. I'll add the background singers later. Here's the lyrics. 

P.J. Hands the sheet music to Lucas.

PRODUCER J.

You can follow along while I play the track. 

LUCAS

Sounds good.

P.J. Pushes a few buttons, flicks a few switches and turns a few knobs.

PRODUCER J.

Alright my brotha.

P.J. pretty much repeats the long-ass process of button pushing, switching and knob turning.

LUCAS

I'm I gonna hear it today?

PRODUCER J.

Here we go. Check it out.

MUSIC PLAYS

LUCAS

Yeah, I kind of like that.

PRODUCER J.

Keep in mind the music's not complete yet, still need a few minor adjustments.

LUCAS

No it sounds good. I dig the lyrics too. You wrote this?

PRODUCER J.

Yeah. I don't believe in no bubble gum crap like they're putting out today. Makes my ears hurt. 

LUCAS

I'm glad we're on the same page.

PRODUCER J.

(singing it)

You know it.

(normal voice)

Let me know when you're ready and we can run through it.

LUCAS

Okay. I'm ready.

PRODUCER J.

Okay let's do it then. You can step in booth number one right behind you. Headphones are already in there waitin' for you. 

Lucas enters the audio booth and gets ready.

PRODUCER J.

(through headphones)

You okay in there Luke?

LUCAS

(through the monitors)

Yeah everything is good.

FROM THIS POINT on, P.J.'S VOICE WILL BE HEARD THROUGH THE HEADPHONES AND LUCAS' VOICE THROUGH THE MONITORS/SPEAKERS.

PRODUCER J.

Go on and step up to the mic so I can get some levels on you.

LUCAS

Alright, what you want me to do?

PRODUCER J.

Just count to ten for me then count backwards.

LUCAS

1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10. 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1.

PRODUCER J.

Oh yeah baby, sounds great! Now I wrote this song but I want to hear how you deliver it in your own style, in relation to the music of course.

LUCAS

I can roll with that.

PRODUCER J.

I thought you looked like a roller. Ooh-wee! Okay you ready?

LUCAS

I'm ready.

PRODUCER J.

Here we go baby.

P.J. Pushes a few buttons, flicks a few switches and turns a few knobs.

PRODUCER J.

Alright my brotha. Almost there.

P.J. Pushes a few buttons, flicks a few switches and turns a few knobs.

PRODUCER J.

And here we go.

MUSIC PLAYS

Lucas begins to sing with a rich base.

LUCAS

THIS IS HOW I FEEL WHEN I FEEL WHEN I'M WITH YOU. BABY, BABY--

PRODUCER J.

Hold on.

MUSIC STOPS

PRODUCER J.

You okay in there?

LUCAS

Yeah, why?

PRODUCER J.

Well... you voice.

LUCAS

What about it? You want me to try something else?

P.J. Laughs.

PRODUCER J.

Okay you got me. I don't know how I fell for it but I did. Alright, let's do it for real this time.

MUSIC PLAYS

Lucas sings with the same rich base but different style.

MUSIC PLAYS

Lucas begins to sing with a rich base.

LUCAS


(singing)

THIS IS HOW I FEEL WHEN I FEEL WHEN I'M WITH YOU. BABY BABY--

PRODUCER J.

Hold on hold on.

LUCAS

You didn't like that?

PRODUCER J.

No. Time is money so let's stop horsing around and--

LUCAS

What do you mean horsing around? I'm a professional.

PRODUCER J.

Well this is for the radio man, I thought you were going to use your singing voice.

LUCAS

This is my singing voice.

PRODUCER J.

(confused)

Okay I like it, don't get me wrong, but... it's a little too bassy... for my song at least.

LUCAS

So bring it up a little.

PRODUCER J.

Yeah, just take some base out, that's all.

LUCAS

Okay I can try that.

PRODUCER J.

Alright let's try it again.

MUSIC PLAYS

LUCAS SINGS with a little less bass.

LUCAS


(singing)

THIS IS HOW I FEEL WHEN I FEEL WHEN I'M WITH YOU. BABY BABY--

MUSIC STOPS

LUCAS

What's wrong now?

PRODUCER J.

Lucas. Did you take any base out at all? Because you still sound like freakin' Barry White, God rest his soul. 

LUCAS

You said I could use my own style.

PRODUCER J.

Yeah, but not your own voice. I mean in order for this song to be a radio/club/pop hit, which I know it will be, I need you to take out a lot more bass in your voice. Please.

LUCAS

Okay, I'll try.

PRODUCER J.

I know you can do it. Ride or die baby ride or die.

MUSIC PLAYS

The singing sounds like it's coming from a female.

FEMALE


(singing)

THIS IS HOW I FEEL WHEN I FEEL WHEN I'M WITH YOU. BABY BABY--

PRODUCER J.

Yes! Yes! That's what I'm talking about Lucas!

The singing stops.

PRODUCER J.

What are you stopping for?

MUSIC STOPS

LUCAS

Are you serious? You liked that?

PRODUCER J.

Hell yeah, that was perfect. You nailed it bro!

LUCAS

But come on man I sounded like woman.

PRODUCER J.

That's what America wants dog, a man who sounds like a woman, that's the in-thing. Falsetto, cat-daddy. You've heard of falsetto before haven't you?

LUCAS

Yeah but it just doesn't feel right.

PRODUCER J.

It's right, it sounds right, believe me it's right. 

LUCAS

Well it ain't right to me.

Lucas comes out of the booth, headed towards the exit.

THE VOICES SOUND NORMAL NOW (NOT THROUGH HEADPHONES)

PRODUCER J.

Woe woe woe, where you goin'? 

LUCAS

Home.

PRODUCER J.

Look, I'm gonna be honest with you, this ain't funk and it ain't soul, it's pop. The radio wants to feel at ease and the clubs want to feel non-threatened. 

LUCAS

What does all that mean?

PRODUCER J.

It means that deep... ethnic voice of yours sounds too intimidating. 

LUCAS

Really? I'm sorry man but I can't be singing like no woman, I wouldn't be able to show my face around town.

PRODUCER J.

Are you kidding? You'll be signing autographs everywhere you go. You sound like an angel and as soon as I throw some Auto-tune on it it's gonna go gold brotha, maybe even platinum. 

LUCAS

Every producer says that. Besides, I have my pride, my dignity, and I want to keep both of them.

Lucas begins to walk out.

PRODUCER J.

Okay, before you leave, I just want you to stop, turn around and take a look at that picture behind you.

LUCAS

Is this Shlushy Boo?

PRODUCER J.

That's right, I produced his last track, "The Boo-Boo party."

LUCAS

That was Shlushy Boo? I thought that was a female singing that.

PRODUCER J.

Na, he mastered the art of female singing, now he's signing autographs left and right. The Boo-Boo party didn't go platinum but if you take a closer look at that check he's holding you'll see he still cleared one point two million, cold hard cash for that single.

INT. STUDIO DAY - MOMENTS LATER

The same FEMALE VOICE is singing the over the track again.

FEMALE

(singing)

THIS IS HOW I FEEL WHEN I FEEL WHEN I'M WITH YOU. BABY BABY--

PRODUCER J.

Ah that's beautiful. Man you are killin' it Luke!

LUCAS

Okay, turn me up in my headphones.

FEMALE

(singing)

THIS IS HOW I FEEL WHEN I FEEL WHEN I'M WITH YOU. BABY, BABY. LOOK INTO MY EYES AND TELL ME WHAT YOU SEE. WHEN I LOOK INTO YOUR EYES I FEEL FREE...

FADE OUT.