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Don Was Records Local Artists For Internet Site

Of the Oakland Press

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Ferndale's 54 Sound is best known as the primary studio home of Detroit rap superstar Eminem. But a different creator has taken over this weekend.

Grammy-winning producer and Detroit native Don Was has come home for a three-day blitz of recording for the Wasmopolitan Cavalcade of Recorded Music, his domain on the Internet site www.mydamnchannel.com. Was started work on Saturday (Oct. 20) and will continue Sunday and Monday (Oct. 21 and 22), recording local artists such as Luis Resto and David McMurray -- members of his band Was (Not Was) -- the Go, the Ramrods, the Muldoons, Black Bottom Collective, the Sisters Lucas and Nomo from Ann Arbor.

He hopes to have their performances spots up and running online within the next two weeks.

"We've got a marathon going here," Was -- whose production credits include the Rolling Stones, Bonnie Raitt, Bob Dylan, Ringo Starr, Bob Seger, Barenaked Ladies and many others -- said on Saturday.

"I just wanted to come in and record a bunch of bands and put 'em up (in the Internet), and we'll see what happens.

The web site was started by former VH1 and CBS Radio executive Rob Barnett as a home for short comedic pieces, but he also approached Was about starting a music channel. The Wasmopolitan downloads are free, with advertising attached to the download pages to fund the project and pay the applicable publishing fees.

The Wasmpolitan channel currently features performances by Was (Not Was) singer Sweet Pea Atkinson, singer-songwriters Jill Sobule, Mia Sharp and Stephen Bruton, and a band formed by Pete Thomas and Davey Faragher, the rhythm section from Elvis Costello's backing band the Imposters. Sobule is also featured on "The Wasmpolitan Dance Party," a "concert" recorded at a North Hollywood furniture store.

The site also includes interviews with Ozzy Osbourne and Guns N' Roses alumni Slash and Duff McKagen, who are now with Velvet Revolver. A collaboration between MC5 guitarist Wayne Kramer and Was (Not Was) co-founder David Was (ne Weiss), both Detroit natives -- on a song about Pat Tillman, the NFL player turned soldier who was killed by friendly fire in Afghanistan -- will be going up soon.

Was is hoping that the web site exposure will help

"We know about 100,000 people will see them now," on the site, Was says. "Hopefully by the end of the year there'll be a million people."

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