While promoting his new book Outside the Jukebox, the very talented and rather prodigious musician Scott Bradlee shared how his early days of transposing songs from video games into ragtime jazz on YouTube opened a much bigger world for him both professionally and personally. One such example was by being asked to score the soundtrack for the video game Bioshock Infinite with legendary vocalist Miche Braden, Bradlee learned that he wanted to work with more singers and do more composing and musical arranging.
They paired me with this amazing singer named Miche Braden who was actually a Motown legend. She grew up in Motown she studied with the Funk Brothers and they told me that she would be singing one of my arrangements. At this point I had never really teamed up with a singer before I didn’t even really like singers …so we got into the studio and Miche Braden just to let loose with this amazing kind of Bessie Smith blues voice …Hearing this amazing singers sing to one of my arrangements and I just thought, well maybe I’m not just a pianist maybe I have a chance of being a producer. Maybe you know, maybe arranging, maybe that’s something I like to do.
Thus Postmodern Jukebox was born. Bradlee was also offered and accepted the role of music director for the breakout off-Broadway site-specific show Sleep No More.
So what started out as a gimmick you know, this video where I’m taking songs and making them into ragtime wound up opening this whole new world for me. Where all of a sudden I’m teaming up with amazing singers and becoming an arranger and a bonafide producer.
Outside the Jukebox is available for pre-order on Amazon, with a release date of June 12, 2018.
Here’s Bradlee’s ragtime version of the Tetris theme song from 2013.