Gunpowder & Sky and Audible Ink Deal to Create Series About St. Vincent, Smokey Robinson & More

Smokey Robinson
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Celebrity Fight Night

Smokey Robinson performs onstage at Celebrity Fight Night XXIV on March 10, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. 

Production company Gunpowder & Sky recently inked a multi-project development and production deal with Audible to expand the audio company's "Words & Music" musical storytelling initiative. Influential artists including St. Vincent, Smokey Robinson and Alanis Morissette will tell the stories of their long-spanning careers in their own words and lyrics.

St. Vincent (real name Annie Clark) will kick off the collaboration launching later this summer with her inaugural title St. Vincent: Words & Music, which takes listeners through an intimate journey of her self-discovery as an artist tracked through her lyrics. Robinson's collection recalls his legendary career over the last 70 years with raw storytelling and performing, while Morissette's Audible Original project parses her self-discovery narrative through the insightful lens of artist, celebrity and human.

"Life is strange and full of uncertainty, right now. But music is a constant. Music transcends the chaos," St. Vincent said in a press release. "It’s always been there for me when I’ve needed it -- whether in times of fear, heartbreak, anger, joy. So I’m thrilled to be working with Audible to share my story and my music, especially at a time when music is such a crucial part of coping and getting through these unprecedented days."

Rachel Ghiazza, Audible’s executive vice president and head of US content, said the company feels "extraordinarily grateful" to push the envelope on audio storytelling given the current times with the novel coronavirus and international protests against systemic racism. The original audio productions designed exclusively for Audible listeners are currently being recorded in at-home studios due to the pandemic.

"It’s always been my passion to create experiences that touch and move people," the Motown legend said in the release. "I’m humbled to have the opportunity to share my story, the stories of my incomparable contemporaries like Marvin [Gaye] and Aretha [Franklin], plus my music with the millions of Audible listeners who are looking for authentic stories told in ways they’ve never experienced before."

Gunpowder & Sky CEO Van Toffler described the Audible partnership "a dream come true." "Music has the unique ability to tell stories that end up defining the highs and lows of our lives -- and, well, pretty much convey our emotions much better than we mortals can without these wonderful melodies," he said in the release.

Audible will release more details on the artists' upcoming "Words & Music" projects in the next few months.

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