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Author Archives: paulms

About paulms

My name is Paul Shapera, a musician working under the name Mocha Lab. I make albums, theater shows, videos, dance pieces, commercials and move around a lot.

Leil Bar-Z, Voice of Danijela In Janissary

Liel Bar-Z

I would like to introduce you all to Liel Bar-Z, an Israeli singer who sings the part of Danijela the Mother in Janissary. You’ll just have to take my work for it that her performance is freaking incredible. Just incredible.

You should totally check her out. She is amazing.Her work on the upcoming album is utterly stunning. Give her pages some love.

Her Soundcloud page is here

Her Facebook page is here

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Posted by on September 19, 2018 in Uncategorized

 

Janissary Vocalists Recording Tomorrow

Janissary Paul Shapera A Balkan Rock Opera

We were supposed to record the last 2 vocalists last week, but everybody involved got sick the day before, so we’ve rescheduled and it’s happening tomorrow. The album is set to release in early October. Make some noise. This is a major rock opera, 90 minutes, 3 acts.

It is inspired by the Balkans, and anybody from eastern europe or familiar with eastern europe will recognize numerous tropes happening on a number of levels. For those unfamiliar with the Balkans and want a tie in to the New Albion world, it takes place in an unnamed land east of NA and is the story of the Monk’s youth. As in, the Monk and Gambler… that monk. This is her… origin story? Tale of her youth? For those unfamiliar with New Albion (which is unlikely to be anyone reading this blog), don’t worry about it. This is a stand alone tale with only the most cursory tie in.

There were a number of challenges i set for myself, one of which was limited instruments. This is piece is a band album. It uses 6 instruments: Drums, bass, guitar, keyboards, accordion, and violin. There is some coloring using ethnic balkan instruments, but even those are playable by the keyboardist in live performance. This album is completely reproducible live by 6 musicians. I would like to see a live performance take place, and we will be working on funding to put it up here in the balkans for a few shows. That is down the road, however. My immediate concern is the album. It has some of my favorite last 15 minutes of any work i’ve made. (If i had to list top 3 endings, i’d put down Dieslepunk Opera, Miss Helen’s WW Cabaret, and this, although this isn’t about surprise endings, it’s just about nailing the  landing perfectly during the final 2 songs.)

I will try to remember to record some footage of the sessions tomorrow. I’ve forgotten to do so thus far, so we’ll see if i can do so tomorrow.

 
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Posted by on September 11, 2018 in Uncategorized

 

The Shaperaverse Wiki

http://shaperaverse.wikia.com/wiki/Shaperaverse_Wiki

Yes, holy blazing ballsicles, this actually exists. To my utter shock and surprise, it’s pretty decently filled in, and filling in more and more. No, i myself have no hand in it, but you are more than welcome to contribute. Yes, i love it more than i love a number of cookies that aren’t oreos or butter cookies and many flavors of Ben & Jerry, although obviously not Apple Pie, Cookie Dough or Chubby Hubby, because come on. And for the record i love me some cookies and ice cream.

Yes, i peed myself a little reading it. Or just knowing it exists. Or just thinking about tis existence. My bladder is a free flowing spirit of overabundance where this is concerned.

Check it out. Feel free to jump in and edit and add.

To all the fine people who are doing this: if i could, i would come to you this very night and pet your little head while you fell asleep and softly sing you cheesy old 70s story ballads, you know, those 70s song that told cute little stories like One Tin Soldier, Harper Valley PTA, and Cats In The Cradle (which would make me cry while singing it to you). And for the record, i can sing all of these straight through. I for you, i would, while gently petting your sleepy little head until you drifted off to a deep and sweet sleep. At which point i would help myself to a cookie in your kitchen (bonus if you’ve got some oreos or butter cookies) and let myself out, being sure to lock the door so you’ll be nice and safe while you dream sweet little dreams of summer afternoons when you were but a carefree tyke.  Because you deserve it.

 

 
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Posted by on September 4, 2018 in Uncategorized

 

Skinny Legends Of New Albion or How I Learned To Stop Fearing Steampunk Dystopias And Love Snapple

Anna Glavin, who I believe played Soldier 7285 in the recent NSTA production of Dolls in New York, has the cutest little Vlog of random silliness from their summer rehearsals. There’s no show or rehearsal footage, it’s just bits of fun, adorable purity that makes my broken, calloused heart feel little smiley faces. So I’m posting it.

 
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Posted by on September 3, 2018 in Uncategorized

 

Summer’s Over And The Janissary March Has Begun

Janissary Paul Shapera A Balkan Rock Opera

I have waited patiently for the fun and games of summer to end so that the blood bath may begin. And at last we are here.

I leave today to go to Croatia, briefly, to record Tomislav Čeleketić, who will be singing the black monk’s Song, Thus Spake The Vampyr. I will literally be turning around to leave the next morning to get back and prep for the big recording day on Sept. 5th, when i record both Bojan Stankovic and Jovana Gavrilovic who will be singing the parts of Bogdan and Danijela, Brija’s father and mother.

Lauren has already sent in her vocals. I’ll get back to her early next week with whatever do overs there are, and after that we’re down to recording the violinist and the rest of the guitar parts. And then comes the mixing.

I will video as much of the journey as is appropriate, but from here on in, it’s all Janissary, all the time.

After this, work will begin on the biopunk fairytale, which is going to be quite intensive. It’s going to be a significant step forward in New Albion history and lore and i will be focusing exclusively on it after i begin. Composition should take between 6 and 8 months, assuming all goes smoothly.

So stay tuned, videos from the journey to Janissary are coming.

 
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Posted by on August 31, 2018 in Uncategorized

 

Photos from the NTSA New York Production of Dolls Are Out Now And They Are GORgeous

Picture your biggest crush straddling your favorite dessert in front of a sunset. That’s what these pictures look like. They look better than Jasper after hard, physical labor with that sheen of muscle bulging man sweat looks like to Annabel. They look better than Fay in fishnet stockings looks like to Edward. They look better than a picture of Byron standing in front of an adoring crowd with his hair perfectly blowing in the wind looks like to Byron.

You get the idea. I could eat the pics, then everyone in them, then, when I get arrested for cannibalism the judge and jury would join me in a giant photo voring frenzy. You need to check them out now. For the full set, go here:

http://ntsa.smugmug.com

Here’s a few random ones (also, huge kudos to whoever lit this thing. I can’t wait for the video):

 
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Posted by on August 27, 2018 in Uncategorized

 

Lauren Osborn Is Getting Married! Support Her Through The Lullabies Album!

Lullabies Paul Shapera Lauren Osborn

https://mochalab.bandcamp.com/album/lullabies-featuring-lauren-osborn

I know i’m over releasing, but i’ve been waiting on this one for a year now. Lauren Osborn is getting married this month. So i’m releasing the album Lullabies, a collection of lullabies we did together for a children’s YouTube channel that came to naught. ALL proceeds from it, every dime, every penny, will be sent to Lauren as a wedding gift on behalf of me and you, her audience who she may not even know cares. But here’s your chance to show her you care.

If Lauren’s voice, all these characters, all these albums over the past 6 years, if they’ve moved you, why don’t you show her your support? Purchase this Lullabies album and your purchase, all of it, will go to her so she and her beau can start their new lives.

I would also point out that this album is gorgeous. It was made over the course of 2017 and features Lauren singing absolutely enthralling lullaby music. It’s for chilling, and i have personally used these tracks to put my toddler to sleep for an entire year and can attest to the fact that not only did it work perfectly, knocked him out like a light, i actually found it immensely pleasurable to listen to over and over again. Oh, Lauren’s voice is just SOOOO smooth.

Don’t you need a serious, mellow, chill out album in your life? One whose beauty will move you and give you some vestige of hope in humanity? Of course you do.

I’ve been planning this for an entire year and have been unable to say anything because it’s a surprise. But now that the wedding is almost upon us, it is time. Come, show your love to Lauren and help wish her well.

 

 
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Posted by on August 13, 2018 in Uncategorized