Legendary record producer and songwriter Kim Fowley recently recorded an unsigned band he discovered on the streets of Austin at South by Southwest, and was misquoted for his efforts.
During SXSW, I was Kim Fowley's personal assistant, event coordinator, and recording engineer. I accompanied him to the premiere of The Runaways; I was with him when he visited with Kristen Stewart and Dakota Fanning at the after-party at Moonshine. The next day, Kim and I met with the music supervisor of the Twilight franchise, who mentioned to Kim that there was possible interest in his providing atmospheric music that might be utilized on the soundtrack of The Twilight Saga: Eclipse.
Kim then introduced the executive to Geoff Martyn, a founding member of the UK band Travis. As Twilight fans know, the Travis album The Man Who, to which Martyn and his brother contributed, was an inspiration to Stephanie Meyer in the writing process of Twilight.
I recorded a demo of Geoff and Kim's compositions at the Sheraton, songs to be sent to the executive for consideration for the Eclipse soundtrack. As I write this, Martyn is hard at work in Glasgow, Scotland, putting the finishing touches on the material.
On March 19th, Kim and I heard the song "My Heart's on Fire" performed on Neches Street in Austin by the unsigned band Maren Parusel. Kim liked the San Diego-based band so much that he offered to do a Test Recording the following Tuesday in Hollywood.
When Maren Parusel came to the studio, Fowley refused to record "My Hearts on Fire" because the song "Hearts on Fire" was being performed by Scars on 45, who record for Chop Shop, the label behind the top-selling Twilight soundtrack albums, as Kim, Geoff, the label exec, and myself were having our chat.
Fowley insisted that Maren Parusel record a different song for the Test Recording because he thought it would be "bad manners" to record a different song with the same title. The band's manager, Mario Escovedo, told San Diego News Network blogger Mikel Toombs (without Kim Fowley's approval/consent) that "because of the actress playing Joan Jett, Kim Fowley struck a deal to write some songs for Twilight three."
Unfortunately, that information was erroneous on several levels.
During Fowley's ten-day visit to SXSW, he extended himself to many creative artists and industry types, co-wrote songs, jammed, danced, and even collaborated on two movie outlines with two different writers – on the same day. When I called Kim at his West Hollywood home to tell him about the misquote, he quoted, in a disappointed voice, Pete Seeger's folk-protest song, "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?":
"When will they ever learn?"
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