DENVER — Captain Kirk would likely dig exploring the cosmos listening to “Smooth Federation,” a collection of “Star Trek” arrangements done in jazz styling.
The album is a unique idea, and a first for Arvada’s internationally known podcaster Brian Ibbott.
“We think it will be really popular. There isn’t anything quite like it out there,” Ibbott said.
Ibbott has established himself as a figure in online broadcasting with his long-running podcast Coverville, which he is extending into a record label with the launch of this popular space franchise tribute.
The music is arranged and performed by Andrew Allen, 24, who said he got the idea for the compilation from his love of jazz and sci-fi.
“I think the most exciting part of all this for me is that with all that has been done with ‘Star Trek,’ this is a brand new idea,” Allen said. “People will notice this.”
Playing piano since his youth, Allen graduated from The University of South Florida. While playing professionally, Allen said he got the idea to do the album after submitting a song to Coverville.
This being Allen’s first album, he said it is even more significant because he plays all the parts.
“I started with laying down a simple drum and bass track and then played the piano part. After that was done, I could go back and re-edit the other parts so they all interacted like a full band,” he said.
Ibbott is no stranger to cover music or interpretations, as his podcast Coverville features these types of arrangements submitted to him regularly.
“I started using Andrew’s music during the ‘Stump a Trek Nerd’ segment on the show and thought; ‘Wow, this is way too good not to share with more people,”’ Ibbott said.
On the air since 2004, Ibbott said Coverville is one of the longest running podcasts in the history of the medium.
“We have been around almost longer than the word ‘podcast’ has existed,” Ibbott said.
“Smooth Federation” was able to get off the ground following a successful campaign on the fundraising website Kickstarter which raised $12,845 from 638 backers.
With plans to visit Star Trek and other sci-fi conventions with around 1,500 copies of the album, Ibbott has high hopes for it reception among fans.
“We think it will be really popular and lead to a lot more down the road for the label,” he said.
The next project in the works for Ibbott is a Violent Femmes tribute album, he said.
“I am already getting submissions,” Ibbott said. “So I am sure it will be big.”
Allen is also working on a follow-up to the album, which he said will be live and involve other band members.