Good-bye to a Good Friend of FSD

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on January 21, 2013 by freakshowdeluxe

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Today is a very sad day for not just your FreakShow Deluxe, but for a lot of people.

Our dear friend, Andy Copp, an amazing visionary filmmaker and artist, is gone. He was the one who shot the first FreakShow Deluxe documentary. He also made a couple films that featured members of FreakShow Deluxe in the cast.

Andy was a great guy, too. He and FSD’s founder, Rev. Tommy Gunn, were good friends and shared a friendship with Dr. Creep (without whom there would be no FSD). The two of them were working on a new promo video and a re-issue of the original documentary as well as additional footage of how much the company has changed.

Adios, Andy. Vaya Con Dios. We will always miss you.

Time for a Brand New Year of Freakiness!

Posted in Behind the Scenes at FSD, History of FSD with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 13, 2013 by freakshowdeluxe

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Your FreakShow Deluxe is ramping things up for an interesting year in 2013.

Wait… isn’t there the fablied Chinese curse? “May you live in interesting times.” Uh oh.

Too late now. We are in 2013, rebirthed, and ready to go…

Of course, as with any rebirth, there has been some pain involved.

This year FreakShow Deluxe was once again a part of the Full Throttle Saloon (for both Bike Week AND the TruTV series) – plus their big event in Kansas City, KS, Maroon 5‘s epic Halloween party at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Halloween week at the infamous Magic Castle in Hollywood, CA, fairs & festivals with our good friends at Universal Fairs (including the Ostrich Festival, Delta Fair & Music Festival, AND their new venture: the State Fair of Virginia), Texas Tattoo Showdown in El Paso, TX, the Sideshow Gathering in Wilkes-Barre, PA, Hell City Tattoo Show (this time in Killumbus, OH), OC Market Place‘s Trick-r-Treat Halloween event, PLUS we did plenty of stuff at PT Showclubs, Diamond Cabaret, and other great clubs all over the U.S.!

If those weren’t enough, we did GREAT shows for the Frontier City Amusement Park in Oklahoma City, OK, Melbourne Freak Show in Melbourne, FL, kicked as at The Joint in Little Rock, AR, appeared at the Steampunk Saloon in Altadena, CA, returned to (and did our last show at) Washington DC’s Red Palace, made it into Canada for the Maritime Tattoo Festival in Halifax, NS, helped out the folks with The Devil’s Carnival, PLUS some great private events and local club parties all over the U.S.!

We had our great sponsor LUCKY 13 APPAREL, did good stuff with Rebel TV Radio (including their awesome Misfit Sideshow Cabaret shows), worked with WE ARE THE FALLEN, and had our people appearing on ALL kinds of television shows — one of the best being Grennan the Green Monster’s appearance on Nickelodeon’s FIGURE IT OUT, for which he received national attention.

It wasn’t easy, though… a couple of our core members have stepped away or taken a break — to move, or get married, start a new relationship, or whatever the case might be… but FFSDFSDF (Forever FreakShow Deluxe FreakShow Deluxe Forever). They are still in our hearts and on our minds.

We also lost some of our Associate members – moving on after figuring out for themselves that they were not up to our challenge, or getting the boot for lying about who and what they are. We may be a lot – but liars we are not and do not put up with. We are the professionals. The amazing ones. It takes more than the average bear to be one of us — one of the 1% of sideshows.

And 2013 is already looking amazing!! We have some GREAT new performers and Associates we will be working with!!

We look forward to returning to visit with our friends  — and making some new ones — so stay tuned to find out all the fun stuff we are going to be up to!!

Grennan Gets Slimed on Nickelodeon

Posted in Uncategorized on September 1, 2012 by freakshowdeluxe

Grennan Gets Slimed on Nickelodeon

Grennan the Green Monster gets slimed during his appearance on Nickelodeon’s FIGURE IT OUT, originally broadcast July 11, 2012. Grennan holds the honor of being the ONLY person EVER to run from being slimed! When they caught him, he was practically out of Paramount Studios in Hollywood and heading towards Gower Street — but catch him they did, then the host held him under the slime. Grennan laughed the whole time (along with the studio audience and the show’s crew). Good times!! For more good times, come see Grennan the Green Monster during his appearance at the Delta Fair & Music Festival (Memphis, TN) September 1 & 2 (Photo courtesy of Nickelodeon).

BIG QUESTION: Why No Posts Since Last Year?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on September 1, 2012 by freakshowdeluxe

Got the Big Question: Why have there been no posts since last year to this blog?!

A fair question. Sorry. We got caught up!

Your FreakShow Deluxe has been pretty busy. From new shows and events, to returning to the FULL THROTTLE SALOON for another season – and then getting invited to the THROTTLE FEST Kansas City to witness the big wedding of Michael Ballard & his girl, Angie. More TV stuff than just that, too! The Green Monster made his network debut, several other members were on CSI, and we have a new project in the works just about us (very exciting!). Not to mention SO many live shows in so many places, your Reverend Tommy Gunn can’t keep them all straight to get everyone there. So… sorry… It’s just been one bit of mayhem after another.

We have made new friends. Lost some friends. It’s been quite a year — but we agree we were wrong not to stay in touch. We promise to do better!!

Green Monster at the Delta Fair!

Posted in Uncategorized on September 1, 2012 by freakshowdeluxe
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Grennan the Green Monster appeared on Nickelodeon’s hit tv show FIGURE IT OUT (or is it a hit because of him?!), originally broadcast on July 11, 2012. Grennan laid on a bed of nails AND has the honor of being the ONLY person EVER to run from being slimed.

FreakShow Deluxe returns to the Delta Fair & Music Festival in Memphis, TN from August 31 to September 9, 2012!! The troupe will perform three to four shows a day in the Sideshow Tent – alternating with our good friends, The Rhinestone Ropers).

JUST ANNOUNCED:

Grennan the Green Monster will appear at shows through the first weekend (Saturday & Sunday) at all shows! This is his first live public performance since his appearance on Nickelodeon’s FIGURE IT OUT.

The Delta Fair & Music Festival features more amazing FREE shows than we have EVER seen at any fair or festival!! Pig racing, Pig Wrastlin’, motorcycle stunt shows, lion & tiger show, western shows, monkeys riding dogs races, PLUS great live concerts (including Marshall Tucker Band AND Flock of Seagulls). And a midway that you have to see to believe!!

Updates to follow!!

Then THIS Happened… Why Photos Are Not Always True

Posted in Behind the Scenes at FSD on December 21, 2011 by freakshowdeluxe

ImageWait! Who ARE these people?!

So we were recently asked about photos that end up on some of flyers promoting our appearances (including the one above) that may not feature the members of the company who are the ones actually performing at the particular show the flyer is for – not by anyone important, mind you – but it’s a “behind-the-scenes secret” of entertainment we are going to let you in on…

FYI if you missed the show above (you should be kicking yourself), we use this as an example because not all of the cast members shown above appeared at that show.

See – FreakShow Deluxe has a general electronic promotional packet we send out which includes a variety of photos for use by those who hire us. Sometimes this packet goes out WAY before we have actually cast the show out of our company of over 20 performers (plus associates). Once we have a cast set for a specific gig, we usually send out specific promo pics of them – but sometimes we have cast changes or other problems that come up. It is up to the folks using the photos to choose which ones they want to use.

You may be wondering, “Why would you let them use photos of people not in the show.”

Well, honestly, it’s usually not up to us what photos they use. But, whatever… the photos are primarily of FreakShow Deluxe cast members so it’s not a big deal for us. Sometimes the folks using our images to make posters really just cannot tell our individual members apart – and use images of one performer thinking it is another one. What can you do?

Of course, there are still a couple of images floating around of people who used to work with FSD, but do not anymore.

You know those photos you see on posters for Broadway shows and tours? For those shows from Cirque du Soleil? Do you think that person in a non-lead role on the poster is in the show? Probably not. Maybe they were once… Hell – there are a few cases where producers have just dressed up a model in a show outfit to photograph for posters!

“Why would they use the photo of someone no longer (or never was) in the show to promote it,” is what we are sure you are asking right now. “They can’t do that, can they?!”

Yes, they can. Technically, so can we. Our company members and the performers who work with FreakShow Deluxe sign an agreement to work with us. One of the clauses of that contract is for FSD’s use of their image (taken in context of our show, or provided by them for our use) in the promotion of FreakShow Deluxe. And the lawyers pretty much inserted a phrase in that agreement that says FSD can use these images forever (and that’s a mighty long time).

That is not to say we are advertising falsely!! We never specifically say someone is performing at a show who is not. For example, we would never say “starring Kitty Karloff” if our own Kitty Karloff is not scheduled to appear at that show.
But general images? An image of someone swallowing a sword just advertises that there will be a sword swallower at our show – especially if you can not really tell who the person swallowing the sword in the photo is.
That is not to say we make a habit of using photos or images of people no longer performing with FreakShow Deluxe! Every year or so we look through and update the photos and videos that we use to promote FreakShow Deluxe. We weed out the images we can, especially of people we are absolutely not working with again. We do not want to be connected with them. And we do not want you, our audiences and fans, to think they are connected with us.
But sometimes these things happen. We do what we can — if you ever have a question, never be afraid to ask us about it.

Examining 10 years of FreakShow Deluxe (part 5)

Posted in Behind the Scenes at FSD, History of FSD on September 19, 2011 by freakshowdeluxe

So the date arrived to move to Los Angeles.

After much discussion, arguing and the like, Reverend Tommy Gunn was ready to head to Los Angeles. Deciding to accompany him were Miss Malice Aforethought, Phil, Dirty Jonny Grinder, and Grinder’s girlfriend. The Wolf decided to remain in Ohio and there was no dissuading him.

Before they headed out, the Rev and Wolf had a heart to heart conversation about the future of FSD. They decided to set things up so that the Wolf could continue to use the FreakShow Deluxe name and logo in Ohio while the rest of the cast did the same in California  – effectively setting “East Coast” and “West Coast” versions of the show. The Wolf would take responsibility  for all aspects of his show (including insurance, marketing, website and all that stuff) while the Rev. would keep doing what he had been.

Then – all loaded up – everyone hit the road! Phil, Johnny and his girlfriend headed out in the big truck and a car first to do a little sight-seeing on the way. The Rev and Miss Malice headed out a few days later in their two vehicles with the plan to meet up with the rest of the group on the way.

But on the road somewhere between Dayton, Ohio and Los Angeles, California – everything went awry.

It is still not entirely clear exactly what happened. Miscommunications, misunderstanding, rapidly rising fuel prices, vehicle problems, the stress of travel and ego/personality issues all led to an argument. That first argument led to more arguments. So before they even arrived in California, the two groups of traveler were no longer speaking to each other.

Upon arriving in the Riverside, CA area, Phil and Jonny decided that was far enough. They stopped at a storage place and unloaded the truck. The Rev. and Malice arrived just in time to get their things off the truck – and it was the last time any of them spoke for quite a while.

It was a dark time for your FreakShow Deluxe.

The Reverend and Miss Malice got a place in Hollywood and began settling in.
Jonny Grinder and his girlfriend made arrangements to live in Long Beach. Then pursued their own interests.
Phil, not happy with how things were turning out and feeling homesick, returned to Dayton within a week.

Now it was just the Rev. and Malice trying to make things work. This was proving to be difficult as the big-name theater company job the Rev. was supposed to take upon his arrival dried up – leaving him with no employment. Also the Rev’s friend that the entire FSD crew was supposed to stay with was having some personal issues. So long before they were ready to, the Rev. and Malice had to find a place.

Luckily, your Reverend can’t be kept down!

Not to mention, he is pretty resourceful, too. The two found and set up in a little apartment in the Little Armenia area of Hollywood, the Rev. got some temp work which quickly led to a full-time job at a prestigious entertainment law firm in Beverly Hills, and things got to some semblence of “normal.” Now all he had to do was get FreakShow Deluxe up and running.

It took a few weeks – but luckily there is this thing called THE INTERNET! With that, some social networking (it was MySpace, back in the day – along with Tribe), and a few personal connection from when he lived in SoCal before, that got on track too. His online posts offering his services as a “fire-breathing minister” garnered some attention, which led to an offer to host and perform at a show at the Sacred Fools Theater (The F.L.E.A. Show).

The show at Sacred Fools is a key turning point for FreakShow Deluxe for several reasons: Not only did it give Los Angeles and Hollywood a chance to see the Reverend Tommy Gunn in action for the first time (since he was the lead singer of the short-lived band Not Now I’m Naked), but it gave plenty of folks who had only conversed with the Rev online (MySpace, again) a chance to meet him in person.

Miss Malice and the Reverend met Vincent Wolf, the Devil’s Plaything and Mr. Marcus for the very first time that night, among many others. Also Vincent Wolf & the Devil’s Plaything also met for the first time – and would begin dating soon after. Meeting these folks was the genesis for a new beginning for your FreakShow Deluxe – and it led to the creation of the Empire Amusement Hall – which would help catapult FSD into the national spotlight.