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In the long-awaited 100th issue of The Belch Dimension, "Above and To The Left of the Music, Next to the Mayo" takes a look at the short, checkered career of the brief but highly influential folk-rock band The Treehouse Troubadours. This 72-page special will chronicle the group's rise and fall...from its humble beginnings in the coffeeshops of Bed Pan Alley to its big farewell concert that the city is still cleaning up after. Includes interviews with members of the band and an exclusive look at the Troubs' first (and only) music video, a cover of "Stuck Inside of Mobile With The Memphis Blues Again".
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Episode #: 904

Issue #: 100

Release Date: Oct 9, 2013
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Title: "The Treehouse Troubadours"

Story (out of 72 pages): 65 p.

Writers: Jonathan M. Sweet, Jean-Kate Costman, Jonah K. Eastman, and Mencken H. Watts

Pencillers: Ethan W. "Meat" Jackson, Jason W. Keane, and M. Jane Watson

Letterer: Noah Jewett and Jose A. Wheat

Colorist: Nate Meshon and Theo A. "Jet" Swann

Summary:
During a taping of the KSSA-FM morning show, Will B. Caustic lets slip his distaste for the music on the station's playlist while still live on the air. He and Prof. Bobcat find themselves called into the office of station manager Irwin Schicklegruber, and expect to be handed their heads. They are surprised when Mr. Schicklegruber agrees with them wholeheartedly. Inspired, Schicklegruber decides that the station should start its own record label, and hire and promote its own talent on-air. He tasks Caustic and Bobcat with finding musicians to sign to the new label.

The guys start their search at a small local coffeehouse, the Goddess of Love. After listening to string of mediocre performers stink up the stage, Caustic suggests calling it a night. Just then a trio of folk singers--Jon, Ben, and Jon--take the mike and perform their original song "I Was Grunge Before Grunge Was Cool". Amazed, Caustic approaches them after their set and signs them to the new label.

The new group, dubbed the Treehouse Troubadours, takes off immediately with its folksy sound and mix of original tunes and old standards. Later, when sales slump and the band is called upon to reinvent itself, Jon adds several other members of his gang who have any musical talent, as well as a violin-playing street mime, and the dinky little trio becomes a full-fledged band. This brings in new fans but alienates some of his old ones (similar to Dylan's going electric at Newport).

Finally the band gets the call that they're slated to be one of the featured bands on Kiley Cyprus' "Farewell to Dixie" show, a live concert set to celebrate the finale of the Dixie Poughkeepsie series on the Dibny Channel. With the rigors of the recording business, egos getting out of control, and talk that the Troubes have "sold out", however, Jon wonders if it isn't time to disband the band before they lose themselves in the torrent of fame.

To make matters worse, a jealous rival band--Harley and the Motor Psychos--are looking to wipe the Troubes off the musical map...and the Kiley Cyprus show, they realize, is the perfect chance to destroy them in front of thousands of screaming fans.

Notes:
"Above and To The Left of the Music" is a parody of the VHS hit series "Behind the Music", a documentary series that shows the rise (and often fall) of a singer or group in a documentary style, including concert footage and candid interviews.

The Troubadours' heavily Dylan-influenced discography includes:

  • "The Treehouse Troubadours
  • "The Freewheelin' Treehouse Troubadours"
  • "Another Side of the Treehouse Troubadours"
  • "Highway 18 Repaved-ded"
  • "Jigaboo Junction Skyline"
  • "No Train Coming"

    "Kiley Cyprus/Dixie Poughkeepsie" is a parody of singer Miley Cyrus and her onetime stage/TV alter-ego Hannah Montana. Some of Miley's more questionable antics, such as posing nearly nude for Maxim at age 15 or the video where she is captured smoking salvia, are referenced in passing. Also, her cover of "Where, Oh, Where" is arranged similarly to her signature hit "Best of Both Worlds", the theme to the Hannah Montana series.

    The signing of the Jigaboo Street Mime to the band is reminiscent of how violinist Scarlet Riviera came to join Bob Dylan's retinue. Her career began by literally being discovered walking on the street by the singer and asked to play on the Street Legal album.

    Musical Numbers:

  • "I Was Grunge Before Grunge Was Cool". (Jon: vocals, Josh: guitar, Ben: harmonica)

  • "Dooley" (Jon: vocals, Josh: guitar, Ben: harmonica)

  • "Where, Oh, Where Are You Tonight?" (Kiley Cyprus, as "Dixie Poughkeepsie")

  • ""Handicapable Lady"(reprise) (Jon/Kiley Cyprus)

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    Title: "Stuck Inside of Mobile With the Memphis Blues Again"

    Story (out of 48 pages): 6 p.

    Writer: Bob Dylan

    Penciller: J.M. Sweet and Chase Montana

    Letterer: J. Antwon Shea

    Colorist: Newton E. Haas

    Summary:
    A rollicking music video featuring the Belch Dimension players.

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    There are two pages of filler in this issue:

    "Belch Dimension Do's and Don'ts". Part one of a music-themed D&D series.
    "Belch Dimension Do's and Don'ts". Part two of a music-themed D&D series.

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