A Fine Frenzy

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A Fine Frenzy
Alison Sudol.jpg
Background information
Birth name Alison Loren Sudol
Born (1984-12-23) December 23, 1984 (age 29)
Seattle, Washington, United States
Origin Los Angeles, California, United States
Genres Adult alternative, pop
Occupations Singer-songwriter, pianist
Instruments Vocals, piano, guitar, percussion
Years active 2006–present
Labels Virgin, EMI
Website www.afinefrenzy.com

Alison Loren Sudol (born December 23, 1984), known professionally as A Fine Frenzy, is an American alternative singer-songwriter, pianist, and Goodwill Ambassador for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).[1] Her debut album, One Cell in the Sea, was released in 2007, followed in 2009 by Bomb in a Birdcage. Sudol's songs have charted in the United States, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Poland, and France, among other countries, and as of October 2012, she has sold more than 650,000 albums.[2] Her music has also been featured on numerous television shows and featured in several major motion pictures. A Fine Frenzy's latest album, Pines, was released on October 9, 2012.

Biography[edit]

Early life[edit]

Born in Seattle, Washington to two dramatic arts teachers, Sudol and both parents moved to Los Angeles after their divorce when she was five years old. She grew up listening to a wide range of music, including Aretha Franklin, Ella Fitzgerald, and swing.[3] She has stated that her roots are "Scottish, Irish, Polish, and 'a bit' of German."

She graduated from high school at the age of 16, and considered herself "nerdy and quiet." Sudol did not "drink or smoke or do anything like that." She stated in an interview "I was so nervous about going into college like that and super young. I figured I would take two years and try to find out what I was doing with music. And when I was 18, I was just so deep into it that I didn't want to stop."[3]

Sudol had a passion for literature, and immersed herself in the works of C. S. Lewis, E. B. White, Lewis Carroll, Anthony Trollope, and Charles Dickens. Her band's name, "A Fine Frenzy", is taken from a verse in William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream: "The poet's eye, in a fine frenzy rolling, doth glance from heaven to earth, from earth to heaven" (Act 5, Scene 1). After teaching herself to play the piano, she began putting her creative energy into writing songs.

The short demo she sent out received attention from EMI's Jason Flom, who signed her after visiting her house and "listening to her play."[4]

Music career[edit]

Sudol playing the piano

In March 2007, Sudol appeared at the South by Southwest (SXSW) conference, opening for The Stooges. Shortly after, her debut album, One Cell in the Sea, was released to generally positive reviews.[5] The first single, "Almost Lover", peaked at number 25 on Billboard's Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart. In mid-2007, she secured another opening spot, this time for Rufus Wainwright on his tour. In March and April 2008, Sudol headlined her own tour in the US and Canada, and in April she toured France, Belgium, Germany and Switzerland. In September 2008, she was the star act on the opening night of the New Pop Festival organized by the German broadcaster SWR3. She returned to Germany, Austria, and Switzerland on a headline tour in November 2008 and played in the Super Bock em Stock festival in Portugal in December 2008.

Her song "You Picked Me" was featured on iTunes as the "Free Single of the Week" for August 14, 2007, and VH1 featured her as one of their "You Oughta Know" artists.[6] Additionally, in October 2008, "You Picked Me" was chosen as network theme by SIC, a Portuguese television network.

One Cell in the Sea has sold 300,000 copies. In 2008 it was released in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Poland. In each of those countries, the album peaked within the top 30, with the first single, "Almost Lover," reaching number eight in Germany, number ten on the Swiss Charts and number five in Austria.[7]

Sudol's second album, Bomb in a Birdcage, was released September 8, 2009.[8] The first single, "Blow Away," was released on July 17, 2009, followed by two more singles, "Happier" and "Electric Twist."[9] On November 23, 2009, a live album and concert film recorded in 2007, A Fine Frenzy Live at the House of Blues Chicago, was released on iTunes.

On October 31, 2011, Sudol stated via Twitter that the band was mastering their new record "Pines".[citation needed] Several song titles, including "Avalanches" and "Riversong", were confirmed during Sudol's appearance at the Sundance Film Festival. In the March 2012 issue of Lucky magazine, Sudol revealed the third album's title as being Pines.[10] Previously scheduled for release in September 2012, the album's release date was pushed back to October 9. Along with Pines, Sudol released an animated short film and a companion book illustrated by Jen Lobo.[11]

In September 2012, A Fine Frenzy was featured in a campaign called "30 Songs / 30 Days" to support Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, a multi-platform media project inspired by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn’s book.[12] Sudol donated the song "It's Alive" to the cause.

Television and film appearances[edit]

On February 6, 2008, Sudol performed "Come On, Come Out" on the Late Show with David Letterman. On February 23, she sang "Almost Lover" and "Come On, Come Out" on CBS' Saturday Early Show. She guest starred in the fourth season premiere of CSI: NY, playing the character Nova Kent. During her October 15, 2009, appearance on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, she sang "Blow Away". On the television series House the song "Whisper" was heard during the episode "Joy to the World", and the song "Hope for the Hopeless" has been in three episodes: "Act Your Age", "Human Error", and "Airborne". "Hope for the Hopeless" was also featured in the series premiere of Defying Gravity. The song "Near to You" was played in the episode "Friendship/Passion" of the TV series Wildfire. The song "Lifesize" was played during the episode "Doppelgangers" of How I Met Your Mother. Also, the song "The Beacon" was used during the episode "Hot and Bothered" of the Canadian police drama Rookie Blue. "Ashes and Wine" was used in the Vampire Diaries episode "Bad Moon Rising".[13] Her music has also been used on the series The Hills.

Sudol's track "What I Wouldn't Do" was used by the UK fashion chain Matalan on their Christmas 2010 television advertising campaign. In 2011, Banana Republic used Sudol's songs "You Picked Me", "Blow Away", and "Happier" in their Fall advertising campaign and behind-the-scenes footage. Sudol's song "The Fun Begins" was the last song heard during the end credits of the 2011 film New Year's Eve (film).

In 2012, the song "What I Wouldn't Do" was featured in the movie (based on the novel by Nicholas Sparks) The Lucky One starring Zac Efron. The song was also featured in 2013 in Admission, starring Tina Fey and "Now Is the Start" was featured at the end of the Private Practice season 5 episode 18, "It Was Inevitable".

Literature and writing[edit]

Sudol has often referred to the literary influences on her music. Recently she disclosed that she is also pursuing a secondary career as a writer. In an interview, Sudol said she is working a children's story in the "Narnia" tradition, a fantasy featuring animals.[14] In a later interview with Ladygunn magazine, Sudol revealed the title of her fantasy adventure book to be Three Sails and the Family Moss.[15]

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

EPs[edit]

  • Demo - EP (2006): "Rangers," "Almost Lover," "The Well"
  • Live Session (iTunes Exclusive) - EP (2007): "Almost Lover," "The Minnow & the Trout," "Borrowed Time," "Last of Days"
  • Live in 2007 (2007), (Amazon.com exclusive): "Almost Lover (Live)," "Come On, Come Out (Live)," "Rangers (Live)," "The Minnow & The Trout (Live)"
  • Come On, Come Out (2008), Germany: "Come On, Come Out" + Nachtwandler Protone Mix, "Love Sick," "Devil's Trade"
  • Oh Blue Christmas (2009), (iTunes/Target exclusive): "Blue Christmas," "Winter Wonderland," "Winter White," "Christmas Time is Here," "Wish You Well," "Redribbon Foxes"

Singles[edit]

  • "Almost Lover" (2007), Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia, Poland, Lithuania
  • "Rangers" (2007)
  • "Come On, Come Out" (2007), Poland
  • "Blow Away" (2009), International
  • "Happier" (2009), International
  • "Electric Twist" (2010), International
  • "Now Is The Start" (2012)

Soundtracks[edit]

Compilations[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Alison Sudol". IUCN. Retrieved October 17, 2012. 
  2. ^ "Alison Sudol, A Fine Frenzy: Meet the Musician". Apple.com. iTunes. October 18, 2012. Retrieved July 20, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b [1]
  4. ^ Biography & Awards, Billboard.com
  5. ^ see e.g. review in Monsters and Critics
  6. ^ New Music Artists Info on You Oughta Know, Rising New Artists, See Photos & Watch Videos Online | VH1.com
  7. ^ "A Fine Franzy - Almost Lover @ Top40-Charts.com - Songs & Videos from 49 Top 20 & Top 40 Music Charts from 30 Countries". Top40-charts.com. Retrieved October 17, 2012. 
  8. ^ "A Fine Frenzy return". EMI.com. 2009. Archived from the original on May 26, 2009. 
  9. ^ "One the Radar: A Fine Frenzy". DirectCurrentMusic.com. June 1, 2009. Archived from the original on June 27, 2009. 
  10. ^ "A Fine Frenzy new album is called Pines". A Fine Frenzy Web. March 9, 2012. Retrieved October 17, 2012. 
  11. ^ "A Fine Frenzy Announces Co-Headline Fall Tour Dates With Joshua Radin". AFineFrenzy.com. August 16, 2012. Archived from the original on September 9, 2012. 
  12. ^ "30 Songs / 30 Days for Half the Sky | Half The Sky". Halftheskymovement.org. August 30, 2012. Retrieved October 17, 2012. 
  13. ^ The Vampire Diaries | Mystic Grill Music Page: Presented by AT&T
  14. ^ Elle Girl Magazine A Fine Frenzy Interview
  15. ^ Ladygunn Magazine The Heartbreak Issue (page 50)
  16. ^ [2][dead link]

External links[edit]