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Scott Miller's final Game Theory album, Supercalifragile
Scott Miller's final Game Theory album, Supercalifragile
489 backers pledged $32,304 to help bring this project to life.

About

Supercalifragile by Scott Miller's Game Theory project video thumbnail
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Scott Miller was a once-in-a-generation musician who took an established genre of music, examined it with the eye of a scientist, tore it down into its base components then reassembled them in startling new ways. He didn't let convention, expectations or even commercial success, get in the way of experimentation and making great music. 

Scott became a professional musician and recording artist at the age of 17 when he formed his first band, Alternate Learning. It was immediately obvious that his new wave influenced power pop was refreshing and unique. The band recorded two albums together, then Scott set out to form the more sophisticated and ambitious musical project which would gain cult status under the name, Game Theory.

In the '80s Scott recorded eight studio albums with Game Theory, weaving an intricate, highly detailed tapestry of guitar and synth-driven power pop heavily laced with heady lyrics full of scholarly references to literature, art, history, and philosophy. Though influenced by other power pop artists like Alex Chilton (Big Star) and Todd Rundgren, Game Theory's sound was unique and extremely innovative, and they rapidly became a favorite of college radio stations. 

 In the '90s Scott assembled a third band, The Loud Family. While the new sound leaned more towards straight up alt. rock, the material they produced was still classic Miller, with unusual time signatures, rapid-fire chord changes, and a masterful use of language and esoteric ideas. The Loud Family recorded six albums, an EP and a live album, expanding Scott's fan base and solidifying his reputation as a brain-rock wunderkind. 

At the time of his tragic death in 2013, Scott was working on a brand new album under the Game Theory moniker, to be called Supercalifragile. This unfinished album might have been lost for all time if not for the efforts of Scott's wife Kristine, who has enlisted veteran musician Ken Stringfellow (The Posies, Big Star, R.E.M.) to produce the album.

Songs include :

  • No Love performed by Scott and Aimee Mann
  • Time Warner by Scott and members of Game Theory
  • All You Need Is White by Scott and Stéphane Schück
  • I Still Dream of Getting Back to Paris featuring Anton Barbeau
  • And many more!

Several new recording sessions have already taken place, including one at historic Abbey Road studios in London, made famous by The Beatles. More sessions at local studios are planned in the near future. 

Music industry legend Mitch Easter has agreed to handle the final mixing, to make certain that Supercalifragile will carry that classic, distinctive Game Theory sound. 

Q&A 

1. Who was Scott Miller? 

While it seems unlikely that you would have found your way to this campaign without knowing Scott or his music, I suppose it's possible. You can find his entry in Wikipedia here , or for a more in-depth look at Scott and his legacy, we recommend Brett Milano's excellent biography, "Don't All Thank Me At Once: The Lost Pop Genius of Scott Miller."

2. What will the money be used for? 

Making a record is an expensive undertaking. Even though most of the musicians involved are donating their time and talent, there are still a lot of unavoidable expenditures like studio time, mastering, travel and lodging. Then comes the really expensive part: the pressing of vinyl records and CDs, as well as packaging and shipping for both. Our goal amount is set at just what is needed to finish the record and put it in your hands. If we go over that amount, we can start paying back those who have already fronted the money for getting the album this far. 

3. How far along is the album? 

Scott had recorded many vocal and guitar tracks, and left a large collection of sound notes which Kristine and Ken have studied carefully. The rest of the band has been busy adding instrumental and vocal tracks for almost a year. Only a couple of recording sessions remain, and they are scheduled in the next couple of months. 

4. When will it be finished? 

With your help, we should be releasing it early next year. 

5. Who is playing and singing on it? 

Kristine and Ken have brought together a great lineup of familiar musicians to finish Supercalifragile including Game Theory alums like Jozef Becker, Nan Becker, Dave Gill, Michael Quercio, Gil Ray, Donnette Thayer, and Suzi Ziegler, as well as other notable guest artists such as Jon Auer (The Posies, Big Star), Anton Barbeau, Peter Buck (R.E.M.), Doug Gillard (Guided By Voices, Nada Surf), Nina Gordon (Veruca Salt), Scott Kannberg (Spiral Stairs), Ted Leo (The Both),  Aimee Mann, Stéphane Schück, Will Sheff (Okkervil River), Bradley Skaught (The Bye Bye Blackbirds), and Ken Stringfellow (The Posies, Big Star, R.E.M.)

6. What does "Supercalifragile" mean? 

True to Scott's love of playing with language, the album title combines the playful nonsense word from "Mary Poppins" with the vulnerability of life's uncertainty, fusing hugely dissimilar feelings in the way Scott did best. 

7. Is there anything I can do to help make this album?

There is! In addition to pledging generously, you can spread the word! Link to this page on Facebook, Twitter or any other social media platform you participate in. Know someone with a blog or a podcast? Tell them about Supercalifragile! Have an in with a local culture publication? Send them here! Or just tell all your friends who enjoy good music about this campaign. The more people we can bring on board, the better!

The Rewards

Signed Abbey Road mousepad
Signed Abbey Road mousepad
Signed Abbey Road t-shirt
Signed Abbey Road t-shirt
Loud Family "Slouching Toward Liverpool" EP
Loud Family "Slouching Toward Liverpool" EP
Game Theory Lyrics Booklet
Game Theory Lyrics Booklet
Original Game Theory and Loud Family tour t-shirts
Original Game Theory and Loud Family tour t-shirts
Game Theory "Tinkers to Evers to Chance" factory sealed longbox CD (Front and back shown)
Game Theory "Tinkers to Evers to Chance" factory sealed longbox CD (Front and back shown)
Alternate Learning Albums
Alternate Learning Albums
Scott's Airwalk JIM "Plastic" sneakers
Scott's Airwalk JIM "Plastic" sneakers
Scott's Neumann U-87 Studio Microphone
Scott's Neumann U-87 Studio Microphone

Credits

Special thanks to Robert Toren and Kristine Chambers-Miller for the generous use of their amazing photography for our video

Narration by Keoni Chavez

Abbey Road footage courtesy of Stéphane Schück and Hector di Napoli

Mitch Easter photo courtesy of John Vettese/WXPN

Erica's Word video by Jan Novello

Loud Family Live video by Danny Plotnick

Rewards photography by Justin Winokur Photography

Kickstarter video and Supercalifragile cover art by B.J. West

Risks and challenges

The only real risk this campaign faces is if we can't drum up enough support. All of the people involved in making this album happen are seasoned industry professionals, with numerous albums produced and taken to market. All of our manufacturing vendors have been secured, studio time is booked, our capable shipping department is standing by, having completed successful Kickstarter campaigns in the past. The only thing missing is *you!*

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Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

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  1. Select this reward

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    Supercalifragile Digital Download Only

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    Supercalifragile CD +Digital Download

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    Supercalifragile Vinyl LP +Digital Download

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    Supercalifragile CD signed by musicians involved with the project.

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    Supercalifragile LP signed by musicians involved with the project.

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    Abbey Road mouse pad signed by the musicians involved with the session.

    Includes Digital Download (early 2017)

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    Abbey Road t-shirt signed by the musicians involved with the session. (Size XL)

    Includes Digital Download (early 2017)

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    Supercalifragile LP and CD combo

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    Loud Family Live at Great American Music Hall CD

    High-quality recording of Loud Family’s nineteen song set c. 1993. This has never been released to the public. Includes: Don't Fear The Reaper (fragment), Sword Swallower, Isaac's Law, Spot The Setup, Rosy Overdrive, Aerodeliria, Jimmy Still Comes Around, Some Grand Vision Of Motives And Irony, Idiot Son, Wyoming, Remake Remodel, Take Me Down (Too Halloo), The Last Day That We're Young, Even You, Give In World, Like A Girl Jesus, He Do The Police In Different Voices, and Beauty And The Beast.

    Includes Digital Download (early 2017)

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    Loud Family - Slouching Towards Liverpool Signed EP

    This six-song EP includes live performances, as well as live studio tracks recorded at WNUR-FM in Evanston, Illinois. These copies were a part of Scott's personal collection and are signed by Michael Quercio of The Three O'Clock and Game Theory.

    Includes Supercalifragile CD and Digital Download, to be shipped in early 2017

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    Game Theory Lyric Photo Booklets

    LP sized lyric booklets, produced by Rational Records in 1988 contain Robert Toren's photography and lyrics from Game Theory's Distortion, Real Nighttime, The Big Shot Chronicles, Lolita Nation, and 2 Steps From the Middle Ages.

    Includes Supercalifragile CD and Digital Download, to be shipped in early 2017

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    Original silkscreened Loud Family J Tour T-Shirt

    Not reproductions! Large size only.
    Includes Supercalifragile CD and Digital Download, to be shipped in early 2017

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    Original silkscreened Loud Family Days For Days Tour T-Shirt

    Not reproductions! Medium size only.
    Includes Supercalifragile CD and Digital Download, to be shipped in early 2017

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    Original silkscreened Game Theory 2 Steps Tour T-Shirt

    Not reproductions! Large size only.
    Includes Supercalifragile CD and Digital Download, to be shipped in early 2017

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    Game Theory Tinkers to Evers to Chance Original Long Box CD

    Compilation of Game Theory material Scott described as “songs which reached national obscurity, as opposed to local obscurity.” These are the last remaining copies from Scott’s collection.

    Includes Supercalifragile CD and Digital Download, to be shipped in early 2017

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    Alternate Learning - ALRN 7 in. EP

    4-song EP, released in 1979 by Rational Records, featuring Scott’s complex hand-cut sleeve design. (May be white if yellow covers are gone, first come first served.)

    Includes Supercalifragile LP, CD and Digital Download, to be shipped in early 2017

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    Alternate Learning - Painted Windows LP

    10-song LP, released in 1982 by Rational Records. Only 1,000 copies of this record were pressed and it has been out of print for thirty years.

    Includes Supercalifragile LP, CD and Digital Download, to be shipped in early 2017

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    Scott’s Airwalk JIM "Plastic" Sneakers

    Scott's size 10 "Wine" red shoes worn during the 1998 Loud Family tour. Angels will want to wear these.

    Includes Supercalifragile LP, CD and Digital Download, to be shipped in early 2017

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    Scott’s Neumann U87 Microphone

    Scott's well-maintained U87 professional studio microphone, well-known for its warm and well balanced characteristics, is equipped with a large dual-diaphragm capsule and three directional patterns: omnidirectional, cardioid, and figure-8.

    Includes Supercalifragile LP, CD and Digital Download, to be shipped in early 2017

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Funding period

- (60 days)