music reporter

New Showtime series rocks California-style

If you needed to cast a band made up of kids, where would you go? Budd Carr and Nora Felder, the music supervisors for Showtime's new series "Californication," went no farther than the San Fernando Valley's school/camp for kids Join the Band.

The series, which premieres at 10:30 p.m. Aug. 13, stars David Duchovny as a novelist who is struggling to raise his 13-year-old daughter, Becca (Madeleine Martin), while still carrying a torch for his ex, Karen (Natascha McElhone). In the episode in question, Becca is sent to a School of Rock, where her parents watch her perform the Warren Zevon song "Don't Let Us Get Sick" at a battle of the bands.

Carr, who normally works solely on films, says he was thrilled to get back to TV for this project for two reasons: creator Tom Kapinos (WB Network's "Dawson's Creek") has a keen ear for music, and "Californication" marks the first series Duchovny has devoted himself to since "The X-Files."

To find the kids, Join the Band chief John Mizenko e-mailed all of the parents of his band-campers for a casting call. Carr says Felicia Fasano, the show's casting director, has the magic touch; she found Martin's backup band 3 to One (in the show they are called Kill Jill). The executive producers loved the scene so much, they intend on bringing the band back for another episode.

The series is chock-full of music, including licensed tracks from the Rolling Stones and My Morning Jacket. And no, Carr and Felder didn't have to license the title from Red Hot Chili Peppers, whose multiplatform "Californication" album was released in 1999. Californication actually is a commonly used slang term that means to do something California-style.

The record labels are buzzing about StudioNow, an online video editing company that comprises one of the largest freelance editor networks. Why? High-quality, low-cost music videos. UMG, Sony BMG, EMI and WMG all are clients. StudioNow also is used by indie labels and emerging artists.

Hit songwriter Kara DioGuardi is putting her copyright interests up for sale. On the auction block are all of her rights, including her writer's share, in songs she's written and co-written through June 30, sources say. DioGuardi has co-written 20 Billboard-charting songs in the past five years, including Christina Aguilera's top 10 hit "Ain't No Other Man," which was certified platinum.