A few months back we published a full feature on the “Songs In The Pocket: The Essential Songs of Philadelphia” project. For a quick recap, David Uosikkinen drummer of The Hooters is recording what he feels are the Essential Songs of Philadelphia, selling those songs as singles on iTunes and Amazon and giving a portion of the proceeds to The Settlement Music School to fund music education. Each of these “Essential Songs” are chosen from what is a huge discography of Philadelphia music. Uosikkinen’s band, In The Pocket (ITP) records the tracks at an iconic Philly studios with a rotating line up of Philly’s most respected musicians. The recording process of each song is captured by filmmaker Steve Acito into short documentaries that are used as promotional material for the project.
Fast forward a few months.
Well, it’s now obvious that director, Steve Acito had a bit more in mind for the documentary shorts than just promotional material. He’s taken the videos for the first three songs; Joey Wilson’s “All My Monday’s”, The Nazz’s “Open My Eyes” and The Dovell’s “You Can’t Sit Down”, intermixed additional interviews and performance music videos (that include footage shot by real fans in audience) into an engaging 30-minute documentary titled “David Uosikkinen’s In The Pocket: The Essential Songs of Philadelphia: Tracks 1, 2 & 3”.
In August of this year, the extended documentary was nominated for a well deserved 2012 Emmy® Award by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS) Mid-Atlantic chapter. This is Steve Acito’s third Emmy® nod and his company Bluewire Media’s fourth.
Steve, who also co-founded Bluewire Media in 2001, had this to say about his involvement in the project: “It’s is an amazing, we’ve been involved with The Essential Songs of Philadelphia as our corporate charity initiative since its inception. We’re excited to be a project partner along with Dish PR and photographer R. Alex Lewis…both of which I believe are among Philly’s best at their respective craft.”
As a music fan, I love this documentary and it’s a “must see”, but the inclusion and insight of Philadelphia radio legends Pierre Robert and Jerry Blavat really make it ”essential” viewing. To help you make the decision if it’s 30-minutes you’re willing to spend I believe it’s important to show the pedigree of the musicians included:
Rob Hyman – The Hooters – keyboards/vocals
Eric Bazilian – The Hooters – guitar/vocals
Tommy Conwell – Tommy Conwell & The Young Rumblers – lead vocals/guitar
Greg Davis – Beru Revue – guitar
Rick DiFonzo – Roger Waters/Patty Smythe/ The A’s – guitar
William Wittman – Too Much Joy/Cyndi Lauper – bass
Graham Alexander – Cast of ‘Rain’ on Broadway – bass
Richard Bush – The A’s/The Peace Creeps – vocals
Jeffrey Gaines – singer/songwriter – lead vocal
Jay Davidson – Steve Winwood, The Funk Brothers – sax/vocals
Steve Butler – Smash Palace – Guitar
Jeffery Gaines– Singer / Songwriter – Vocals
And of course, the project’s creator David Uosikkinen – The Hooters – drums
Enough said? Yeah, I thought so.
On September 22, 2012 we’ll see if the Academy voters honor the documentary. To see for yourself, watch the Emmy® Award Nominated Documentary, CLICK HERE. You can also view Steve Acito’s other documentaries and photos for the Essential Songs of Philadelphia project by clicking here on SPECIAL PROJECTS.
While waiting for the next documentary, shortly to be released, poke around on steveacito.com to see other cool content and check out the project’s official site, songsinthepocket.com. You can download any of the six songs recorded to date, including the newest essential Philadelphia track…an unbelievably rocking version of Disco Inferno!!!
Uosikkinen must have pulled in some favors on this track, some how he ramped it up even more with legends, TJ Tindall (the original guitarist and band leader from the Trammps original), rapper Schoolly D, Fran Smith, Rob Hyman, Greg Davis, The Soul Survivors, Matt Cappy, Jay Davidson and the return of the multi-talented Graham Alexander, this time on vocals. Whew. You’ve got to hear this one! BUY IT HERE (Amazon / iTunes).
The quality of the artists and songs involved on this project, continue to justify our interest in its development, while documentary director Steve Acito, proves yet again to be amongst its prime movers and certainly one to watch out for in the future.
( Steve Acito and David Uosikkinen photo by courtesy of (c) Dallyn Pavey )
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