Lee Martin

Develops websites for rock and roll bands and gets paid in sex and drugs.

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Intimacy Doesn’t Scale

Yukimi

For years artists have been using the Internet as a channel of communication to talk to their fans. We send out newsletters via email and keep our fans informed of our every move on Twitter and Facebook. We perform live stream concerts, publish videos directed at fans, and attempt to personalize these experiences by employing location based marketing techniques. However, we struggle with noise of the web and the dullness of a one-to-many relationship.

Our real world fan relationships are similar. When a band first starts out, they likely know all their fans on a first name basis because they are friends and family. As the band grows, they lose this personal touch and begin to market themselves in a one-to-many sense. This is apparent at a live show which sees the band performing for a smaller subset of fans, but even here you’ll see an artist attempting to personalize the...

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Awareness Dat

Awareness Dat

New Orleans hasn’t had a good snow since 2008 and well… we didn’t have one yesterday either. Unless, of course, you’re talking about the flurry of visitors that went to Is It Snowing In NOLA. 55,000 to be exact. Generating over 100,000 page views. Now I’ve worked a lot of campaigns for some massive artists, but that number feels very impressive for such a highly targeted group of users.

How did it get so big? I’ve got a few theories.

New Orleans shut down schools, bridges, and businesses in preparation for the snow storm. The mayor also advised residents to stay home. Heeding the warning, neworlenians stayed put and left the city looking something like a frozen ghost town. Instead of venturing out, they logged on and checked their Facebook. The Internet was a substitute for our city yesterday.

I decided to build a simple inside joke website that...

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Speaking Colors in 7 Lines

Speech To Color

Yesterday I released a little experiment which allows you to change the color of a webpage by speaking color names into your microphone. It’s called Speech to Color and it’s a perfect example of magic with minimal code. Seven lines to be exact:

recognition = new webkitSpeechRecognition(); recognition.continuous = true; recognition.onresult = function(e) { color = $.trim(e.results[e.results.length - 1][0]["transcript"]); $("body").css({ background: color }); }; recognition.start(); 

The key here is the Web Speech API which Google specified on October 19th 2012. Yeh… that long ago. You probably noticed when they added the mic icon to Google.com allowing for “search by voice” around then also. Anyway, let’s go through each line:

  1. Initialize the Web Speech API recognition engine
  2. Set it to transcribe continuously
  3. Listen for new...

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From Users to Heroes

A Thousand Faces

I hadn’t heard of Beats Antique until Alec Steinfeld of C3 Presents introduced me to them by asking for my help on developing an online campaign to compliment their latest album A Thousand Faces: Act I and it’s successfully kickstarted tour.

I’m a big fan of structured creativity, and it appeared that Beats Antique took a similar approach on this new record by leaning on American writer, Joseph Campbell’s monomyth to devise a formula by which they could write and record their songs. Joesph summarizes the monomyth as follows:

A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder: fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive victory is won: the hero comes back from this mysterious adventure with the power to bestow boons on his fellow man.

Beats Antique wants to take you on this journey through their music, and have...

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Religious Conversion

Proselytism

If you followed my work last year, you’ll know I was able to launch a lot of evil concepts around Ghost’s Infestissumam release.

  • We premiered the lead single, Secular Haze, by lighting six black candles over the period of a week. Each candle represented one part of the track, allowing for an evolving aural experience.
  • We ran the lead singer, Papa Emeritus, for pope by pasting up SXSW with our own propaganda and allowing fans to cast a ballot for Papa in the concurrently running real-world papal election.
  • We built a confession booth that lives on tour and allows concert goers to confess their sins live to the world.

So I guess I shouldn’t have been been surprised when Fox approached me about building a campaign for their upcoming horror movie Devil’s Due, because they saw my work with Ghost. The initial conversation went something like this:

Me: Have you guys...

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Sinatra on Sinatra

Sinatra on Sinatra

May you live to be 100 and may the last website you see be mine.

Four years ago my niece received a microphone and stand, preset with a few classic diva tracks for Christmas. It also just so happened to be the “Christmas the TV broke” stranding us without entertainment. She was’t able to sing a single song before my little sister, Mallory and I commandeered the present and began performing an impromptu holiday set in the living room for friends and family. My brother, Leslie, who plays music for a living, reluctantly decided to accompany us on piano. It was legendary.

This production has been revisited every year since in several different forms:

  • About a week after that initial performance, Leslie provided us with sheet music and an entire production for the following Christmas, telling us we had a year to practice. We didn’t. We did however perform for 3...

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The Dev Side of the Moon

The Dev Side of the Moon

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Making Contact with Trivium

Vengeance Falls

Every time I get to premiere some guitars, a metallic tear of joy sheds from my eye. Luckily for me, I have colleagues like Harold Gutierrez whom keep the metal projects coming at a fierce and unrelenting pace which the genre would approve of. I swear, I just clicked send on my Amon Amarth invoice, when Harold shot me over the unreleased artwork from the upcoming Trivium release, “Vengeance Falls.” Invasion of earth by Trivium “T” shaped ships which open into metallic praying mantis robots? Check.

What Harold didn’t know, is that I’ve been watching an unhealthy amount of X-Files, Aliens, and Prometheus, and what was supposed to be an exploratory call turned into me nerding out about the various aspects of “making contact” with the unknown and all the 80s era futuristic interfaces that go with that.

I want to believe.

Harold was also a...

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Bank of Muse

I was approached by Muse in April to help develop an interactive campaign that would exist alongside their massive European summer tour both online and at the shows starting May 22nd at Ricoh Stadium. As it turned out, their team were fans of the In Rock We Trust Foo Fighters FOO bill confetti to online campaign I was recently a part of, so we decided to expand upon the concept so that it could exist over the 3-month lifespan of the entire tour while hopefully staying interesting enough for the fans to keep caring.

And so, the Bank of Muse, a financial institution acting as a global joint savings account for all Muse fans, was founded.

Muso

In order to legitimize our bank, we first turned to the counterfeit euro experts at Morning Breath to help design the Musos we’d be printing and distributing at each of our shows. Morning Breath utilized some Muse typography and schematics from...

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100% Chance of Social

Damage

I’ve always been fascinated by weather, and one million websites ago I thought about becoming a meteorologist. That’s probably because I grew up in south Louisiana where we have a “season” for destructive storms. I remember riding out Hurricane Andrew on a house boat with my family. The reason? Well, if the water rose, we would to. We survived the storm and the dream of replacing Jim Cantore waned.

Fast forward to this month and one of my favorite clients, Jimmy Eat World, is releasing their new record Damage, with an umbrella gracing the Morning Breath designed album artwork. No doubt a nod to the aspirations of my youth. Anyway, they needed a way to premiere “Damage” in an accessibly fun way that played on their social strengths. What’s important here is not to satisfy their current fans. The music should do that. Instead we’re trying...

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