Professor Murder

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Professor Murder
Origin New York City, New York, United States
Genres Indie rock, dance-punk
Labels Kanine Records, RCRD LBL
Members Jesse Cohen
Andy Craven
Michael Bell-Smith
Tony Blankets

Professor Murder is a dance-punk quartet from New York City that mixes synthesizers and percussion-based compositions in a method that has drawn comparison to post-punk and new wave bands of the early 1980s and late '70s.[1] They released their critically hailed[2] debut EP, Professor Murder Rides the Subway, on Kanine Records in July 2006. Members of the band are Jesse Cohen (keyboards), Andy Craven (drums), Michael Bell-Smith (vocals, percussion, bass, keys), and Tony Blankets (bass, melodica). In 2009 Bell-Smith, Cohen and Blankets joined with Eric Emm of Tanlines to create a new band, Restless People.

Name origin[edit]

Professor Murder was a character in two comedy sketches on HBO's "Mr. Show"[3] in the 1990s. He was a rapper who was featured in a sketch about the East Coast ventriloquists' feud with the West Coast ventriloquists, which mirrored the same regional divide in the world of rap music. Professor Murder made a second appearance in another sketch as a ringer brought in by the rich kids from the fat camp when they wanted to win a rapping contest against a group of Buddhist monks. Professor Murder was played by Sam Sarpong.[4] It has been said that The Mr. Show sketch of the same name inspired the band's name. It was rumored that Tony Blankets was asked to tour with the John Mayer Trio but turned it down to work exclusively with Professor Murder, but Blankets denied this rumor at the Pitchfork Music Festival.



  • Professor Murder on a Desert Island (2008) RCRDLBL
  • Professor Murder Rides the Subway (2006) Kanine Records
  • Professor Murder Vs. The Magazine Culture (2004)



  1. ^ * Theakston, Rob. Biography of Professor Murder at AllMusic. Retrieved 2012-04-20.
  2. ^ Professor Murder reviewed on Pitchforkmedia
  3. ^ Mr. Show with Bob and David at the Internet Movie Database
  4. ^ Sam Sarpong at the Internet Movie Database

External links[edit]