Category Archives: television

Birminghamlet? Yes. Other cities doing it? Check.

birminghamletcoverIt was only a matter of time. When Carrie Brownstein of Portlandia partially name-checked Birmingham during an interview with Salon in late 2012, it got a little buzz. The full acknowledgement of being Portland-like in an interview with Splitsider in early 2013 caused a wild sensation locally online.

Now, local Ian Cunningham has shown us what the opening to a similar show based in Birmingham would look like. Behold, Birminghamlet:

For reference, here’s the Portlandia opening:


Now, it’s not the only alternate version of the opening getting attention in recent weeks. Besides the one created for Asheville, NC included in yesterday’s post, there’s this one from Homewood, IL (just outside of Chicago):


This could take off like Tebowing – or Spanning. It’s got to be only expanding the reach of the creator of the show’s intro theme, Washed Out.


You are watching The Lone Bellow performance tonight…

The Lone Bellow in VirginiaIf you were wanting another reason to stay up late in order to watch “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” we’ve found one for you. The musical guest for tonight’s broadcast is “The Lone Bellow,” a Brooklyn, NY-based band. Yes, Brooklyn; we’ll explain…

While the other scheduled guests may be reason enough for you to tune in (Vin Diesel and Jeff Foxworthy), we’re thinking the chance for Birmingham to see one of their own performing on television is a pretty good one. Brian Murphy is currently based in New York City, but he is a native of The Magic City, having worked for what is now the Birmingham Business Alliance and as a photographer and musician. He’s also the guy currently playing keyboards for The Lone Bellow’s touring ensemble (he’s also done some engineering for them in the past, including working on this video for the single “You Never Need Nobody”).

Now that we’ve got your attention, you may want to check out the band’s latest YouTube upload, the video for the single “Bleeding Out.” BTW – it’s the one they’re playing on Leno tonight.


Photo: Courtesy of The Lone Bellow’s Facebook fan page.

The Red Cat is ready for AFTERHOURS

photo (32)The lights are dim. Cables are everywhere. And Matthew Perryman Jones is on the stage. It is standing room only at The Red Cat, a coffee house located in Birmingham’s Pepper Place – as long as you are not standing in front of any of the cameras.

The audience, obviously familiar with Jones’s work, is enthusiastic, singing along and providing appreciative feedback. There is a young woman near the front of the space celebrating her birthday and the singer eventually leads the crowd in a chorus of “Happy Birthday.”

The Nashville-based musician drove down to Birmingham specifically for the taping, and would be heading back immediately after the show. However, the intimate venue provided many of his fans access for photos, handshakes, and autographs after his two-part set.

This weekend kicks off a new music series on the University of Alabama’s WVUA/WUOA-TV. AFTERHOURS: Live at The Red Cat Birmingham features performances and interviews with singer-songwriters. The show will air on Sundays, beginning February 10, at 5 p.m. Jones’s performance, filmed Friday, January 18, will be the third act featured. They began filming the series at the coffeehouse in December.

The show’s producers came across The Red Cat while conducting research for the series. It was recently voted “Best Coffeehouse” in the 2012 “Best of Birmingham” poll. Perusing the old promotional posters on the venue’s walls, they decided to see if the coffeehouse’s owners were interested in their concept.

Charlie Mars is the next act scheduled to be filmed at the coffeehouse on February 23. Garrison Starr (March 14), Amber Rubarth (April 4), and Sandra McCracken (April 12) round out the spring sessions – with three more acts already scheduled. There are currently plans for a total of 12 original shows for this season.

The live performances featured on AFTERHOURS will be along the lines of Sessions at The Cactus, filmed in Austin by the University of Texas. The series is part of an effort to upgrade the station’s content. It currently reaches 800,000+ households throughout the state, and is easily accessible in Birmingham on cable and over the air (on Channel 23).

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Although somewhat similar to  We’ve Got Signal, the producers believe the AFTERHOURS concept is different as it specifically features singer-songwriters.

TNN returns via ABC 33/40 while TheCOOLTV fades away

TNN 2012 relaunch logoDigital televisions across central Alabama have stumbled across a new digital sub-channel or two while flipping for the last few weeks while noticing others have disappeared.

First, let’s talk about the new one. ABC 33/40 signed an agreement with The Nashville Network to serve as the former cable-network-turned-broadcast-network’s area affiliate, using digital sub-channels 33.3, 40.3, and 58.3. It, and agreements with nine other stations located in Alabama, Georgia, Kansas, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee were formally announced earlier this week; the station was only formally announced back in April of this year. The classic country music station and Music City postcard to the world relaunched on November 1.

It makes sense that ABC 33/40 is the local affiliate considering their chief meteorologist, James Spann, is a regular guest on The Rick & Bubba Show – the Birmingham-based program that will anchor the revived network’s morning schedule from 6-10 a.m. The new version of The Nashville Network is a partnership between Jim Owens Entertainment, Inc. (the folks behind Crook & Chase, another part of the network’s lineup) and Luken Communications, LLC (the folks behind Retro TV – a.k.a. RTV – formerly seen on 13.2).

Another digital sub-channel appears to have gone dark – at least that’s what it looks like over on 68.2, where TheCOOLTV lived until August 31. That’s when it was dropped by all 32 Sinclair Broadcasting stations that had been carrying it, reducing its footprint substantially.

You can still watch it online though if you’re really missing it…

Do We Have Signal?

The following note was posted on Facebook earlier this afternoon in response to reports that We Have Signal would be ceasing production. Links have been added where possible.

Twe have signalhe rumors of our demise are only slightly exaggerated.  We Have Signal is not “cancelled”.  APT has had major cuts to its funding this year – after years of already painfully deep cuts.  Our entire Montgomery studio is shutting down and its whole staff being let go.  We’re losing a couple people here in Birmingham and a couple at WLRH, our radio station in Huntsville.  The production department in Birmingham, all five of us, are now the only production that APT has.  We’re already working on three feature-length documentaries, countless underwriters and promos and special programs andWe Have Signal and now we are going to have to take up at least some of the slack of Montgomery’s production.

That is all to say that we will be airing new episodes of We Have Signal starting in October.  We’ve already shot our best season yet with No Age, Sebadoh, Crocodiles, G-Side, Cults, Monotonix, Model Citizen and a bunch of other bands and have a few more shoots lined up this fiscal year with people like Lower Dens and Ty Segall.  These new episodes will begin airing October 6th and will continue through April of 2012.  The only questions are whether or not APT can afford to shoot another season of WHS and if we will have the time in the day to do it.  The money is where you come in.  We will more than likely have some kind of fundraising a few months down the road for the show.  And we will have a much better picture of what our total production responsibilities are going to be in about a month’s time.

This is an extremely difficult period for public television and the services it provides.  Between the worst economy in almost everyone’s memory and an often unfavorable political climate, things are, indeed, grim.  But we have hope that we will still be able to bring you the best bands that you won’t hear or see almost anywhere else.  Please do us the favor of advocating for public television to your friends, neighbors and federal and state legislators.  And please do whatever little bit you can financially to not just keep We Have Signal going but APT as an organization.  We’ll have more soon.

Good news from the folks at WHS!

We Have Signal, Rick Karle up for Southeast Emmys

we have signal posterLast weekend the nominations were announced for the Southeast Regional Emmy Awards. The Terminal found out when the folks from We Have Signal shared their excitement via Facebook last night; after winning for audio work last year, the popular live performance series is up for the award again and competing against two other Alabama Public Television (APT) shows for a second award (known as Outstanding Achievement: Television Crafts Achievement Excellence – Editor – Program (Non-News))

A once over of the official nominations list also shows that Fox 6s Rick Karle is nominated for three awards, including best sports anchor and best sportscast. APT’s episode of Alabama Stories titled Honor Flight rounds out the multiple nominees from metro Birmingham and Alabama.

The awards will be handed out in Atlanta at the Grand Hyatt Buckhead on June 26.

Good luck everybody!

Alabama’s invading HGTV’s That’s Clever

After learning about Charles’ appearance on HGTV’s That’s Clever tomorrow morning, we figured that it would be nice to see if there were any other local or regional artists (or ones with a connection to the area) that were going to make the cut and be able to appear in the coming weeks. Well, here’s a list, courtesy of Mr. Buchanan himself:

Date Artist
January 15 Kristin Mathis
January 23 Kristen Farmer Hall
January 26 Joyce Vance
January 27 Charles Buchanan
February 2 David Hammock (Arab)
February 6 Cindy Cail (West Blocton)
February 9 Amy Lucas McClure
February 11 Mike Hawkins

It sounds as though he’ll be sharing more information on his blog as he gets it about other artists making appearances (plus if you’ve already missed the artist’s premiere, it just means you’ve got a reason to check out repeats)!

Local kids do Letterman

For all 3 of you who haven’t heard…

As we posted earlier, Wild Sweet Orange is playing The Late Show with Dave Letterman tonight (CBS 42 at 10:30 p.m., CST). If you want to brush up on your Preston, Chip, Taylor and Garrett fix, head on over to the official website or stream it from their MySpace.

The Paper premieres on APTV tonight

Attendees to September’s Sidewalk Moving Picture Festival will probably remember The Paper as one of the documentary films shown over at the Harbert Center. The piece chronicled moments in the life of the student newspaper at Penn State, The Daily Collegian.

Well, as promised during the piece’s question and answer session, it is making its network premiere on PBS’ Independent Lens tonight at 11:30 p.m.

Here’s a sneak peek for those who missed it:

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You do have some other chances to watch the documentary this month (well, at least TiVo it), since its on at 3 a.m. in the morning on December 12 & 16.