|This biographical article relies too much on references to primary sources. (October 2014)|
Performing at the KSKA Day picnic in 2011
|Birth name||Emily Butler|
|Born||February 24, 1982|
|Origin||Gig Harbor, Washington, U.S.|
|Instruments||Vocals, typewriter, rainstick, keyboards, bass|
|Years active||2007 – present|
Marian Call (born Emily Butler; February 24, 1982 in Gig Harbor, Washington), is an American singer-songwriter based in Juneau, Alaska. Call has released three studio albums: Vanilla (2007), Got to Fly (2008), and Something Fierce (2011). In early 2013, she released her first live album, Marian Call: Live in Europe. A fifth album called Sketchbook was released on December 1, 2013.
Call graduated from Stanford University in 2004 with a Bachelor's Degree in composition and vocal performance. She relocated to Alaska, where she spent two years waiting tables, learning the craft of songwriting. Inspired by the commentary track for the Firefly episode "Objects in Space", she wrote the song "Dark Dark Eyes" and shortly after booked three days in a studio to record what would become her first album, Vanilla, initially a side-project for family, friends, and small Alaskan audiences. However, when fans discovered some of her early tracks on her MySpace page, she realized she was accumulating a fan base.
One of the events that led to Call's accumulating fan-base came after she entered and won the Sing a Song of Saffron contest. The contest was held by a fan blog for the television series Firefly, and Call won with her song "It Was Good for You, Too". One of the judges of the contest was Christina Hendricks, who portrayed the character of Saffron, and had this to say about her winning entry, "She sounded just like me! It was fantastic, I really thought it was a good song even if you don't know the character."
In February 2008, Call announced that she would be going on tour for the first time, playing at venues in California and Texas. Nine months of her tour (June 2008 – March 2009) were spent on bus, which she named the Millennium Tortoise, traveling between the Western US and Canada, before returning home to Anchorage in July 2009 to begin work on her album, Something Fierce.
Before starting her tour, Call started the Song of the Month Project, a project that she continued while touring. This project lasted for twelve months and included songs such as the tongue-in-cheek "I Wish I Were a Real Alaskan Girl" and "We're Out for Blood", a song commissioned by the creator of the film Zombie Cheerleading Camp.
In November 2008 Call was commissioned again, this time for a full-length album, by the science-fiction prop replica company Quantum Mechanix and Black Market Beagles. The album, titled Got to Fly, was Call's first record deal, as well as the first and only album under the Quantum Mechanix label. The songs on the album reflect several aspects of geek culture, with such songs as "I'll Still Be a Geek After Nobody Thinks It's Chic" as well as songs inspired by the television series Firefly and Battlestar Galactica.
While primarily a vocalist, she occasionally uses a typewriter for percussion as well the remains of her cat Zippy which are stored in a small tin. She also performs at concerts using a rainstick, which she had autographed by Nathan Fillion and Alan Tudyk, two actors in the television series Firefly.
In March 2009, Call announced the Donors' Circle, a way for fans of her music to invest in her, not for any financial return, but the return being the art itself. Members of the Donors' Circle have access to several raw samples of music from her upcoming album Something Fierce as well the opportunity to interact with Marian directly, and to give her feedback on the progress of the album.
In the spring of 2010, Call announced her 49>50 Tour, a do-it-yourself national tour where Call would drive across the country stopping to play at the cities her fans have requested. The title of the tour, while mathematically incorrect is done so purposely to reflect her Alaskan pride, as Alaska is the 49th state. It also reflects the bringing of her music from the 49th state to all 50 states (49 to 50). The goal of the tour was to play in every state, whether at public venues or at small house concerts.
In December 2010, she achieved her goal of playing all the states within the year, and managed to include several Canadian provinces.
Marian Call European Adventure Quest!!!
As a means to visit all her fans in Europe, in June 2012 she created a Kickstarter project to fund her tour. It was a great success (being 570% funded). The European Adventure took place in October and November 2012. Marian went to Europe and played more than 25 concerts in seven countries, including the Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, the Czech Republic, the United Kingdom, and the Republic of Ireland.
Ladies of Ragnarok
The Postcard Tour
In 2013 Marian toured parts of the U.S., Canada and Europe during the "Postcard Tour". At each concert, Marian would ask the audience members to take a postcard out of the hand made mail bag she took along and to write or draw something on new postcards which were then taken along to later concerts.
A short sample of "I'll Still Be a Geek After Nobody Thinks it's Chic" from the album Marian Call: Live in Europe (2013), featuring Call's vocals and use of a typewriter as a percussion instrument.
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- Vanilla (2007)
- The Song of the Month Project (2008)
- Got to Fly (2008)
- Something Fierce (2011)
- Marian Call: Live in Europe (2013)
- Sketchbook (2013)
- Question Bedtime (2014) – supporting vocals by MC Frontalot
- Marian Call Sings the Classics, vol. I (2014)
- Yippee Ki Yay (2014)
- Gig Harbor musician to play in Tacoma, 2008-10-28
- Williams, Jenny (2010-06-27). "Marian Call House Concert, or The Importance of Music in Our Lives". Wired. Retrieved 2010-06-27.
- "Profiles in Fandom: Singer-Songwriter Marian Call". Whedonverse.net. 20 June 2010. Retrieved 12 May 2012.
- "Sing a Song of Saffron and win stuff!". Bashing in Minds. Retrieved 2007-05-31.
- "Sing a Song of Saffron winners". Bashing in Minds. Retrieved 2007-08-06.
- "On pickles, touring, fan power, and Zippy (part I)". mariancall on Xanga. Retrieved 2008-02-19.
- "20,000 Mile Playlist)". Marian Call’s Official Blog. Retrieved 2009-07-13.
- "The Song of the Month and other news". mariancall on Xanga. Retrieved 2007-11-01.
- "Zombie Cheerleaders? Bring it On!". mariancall on Xanga. Retrieved 2008-02-01.
- "Zombie Cheerleader Camp (2007) (V)". IMDb. Retrieved 2007.
- "New Album!!!!!1! Songs for Nerds Like Me". mariancall on Xanga. Retrieved 2008-11-08.
- "Got to Fly Geek Tribute Album by Marian Call". Quantum Mechanix. Retrieved 2008-11-08.
- "Fan Power & Zippy pt 1". Marian Call’s Official Blog. Retrieved 2008-11-08.
- "Alan, Nathan, PJ Haarsma". mariancall's photostream. Retrieved 2009-04-18.
- "In Which Marian Offers More than Ever Before". mariancall on Xanga. Retrieved 2009-03-25.
- "Marian Call Donors' Circle". Marian Call Music. Retrieved 2009-03-25.
- "Coming Soon to a Backyard Near You: the 50 States Tour.". Marian Call's Official Blog. Retrieved 2010-03-26.
- "Just Taking Inventory". Marian Call's Official Blog. Retrieved 2010-12-01.
- "Marian Call European Adventure Quest!!!". Marian Call. Retrieved 2012-10-13.
- Blazenhoff, Rusty. "Ladies of Ragnarok, A Tour Featuring Molly Lewis & The Doubleclicks". Laughing Squit. Retrieved 5 October 2012.
- "The Postcard Tour!!!!". Marian Call. Retrieved 2013-12-05.
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