Come meet some fantastic guests. Autographs with our amazing guests are free unless otherwise specified.
Aurelio Voltaire is often described as a modern day renaissance man. He is a singer/ performer, creator of comic books, animation and toys.
An internationally touring musician, he is at the forefront of the Gothic, Steampunk and Dark Cabaret genres headlining some of the biggest horror, sci-fi and comic book conventions as well as Gothic and Steampunk festivals for nearly two decades. His music can best be described as a collection of murder ballads, tongue-in-cheek exercises in the macabre, with just enough bawdy songs about Star Trek and Star Wars to keep a convention audience rolling in the aisles. Many know him for his songs “Brains!” and “Land of the Dead” from the Cartoon Network show “The Grim Adventures of Billy And Mandy”. Voltaire’s live shows, whether solo or with his skeletal orchestra, are full of stories and games. Many describe his shows as sitting around a fire while an old friend regales you with tales, presuming that old friend drinks a liter of rum a night, dates zombie prostitutes and wrestles Krakens.
Voltaire has been recording and touring for over 20 years. He’s released 13 full length CDs. Most recently, Aurelio Voltaire can be seen in his informative and hilarious Youtube series, Gothic Homemaking. In this show, that can best be described as Pee Wee’s Playhouse for spooky kids, he demonstrates how to turn your boring apartment into a Gothic lair with the help of a desiccated co-host, Orville Deadenbacher and a bunch of other recurring monster characters.
Steam Powered Giraffe
The robots of Steam Powered Giraffe are like nothing you’ve ever seen. The malfunctioning joke-spewing metal men play a collection of original Vaudeville inspired tunes fused with modern flare and executed in a super-sleek, one-of-a-kind performance. More than just a band, Steam Powered Giraffe is an experience that must be seen and heard by the entire family.
The artists behind the SPG robots started street busking as these quirky characters back in January 2008 at Balboa Park, California, instantly drawing the attention of Southern California. They have since performed at such venues as The San Diego Fair, The San Diego Zoo, The Wild Animal Park, Legoland, Ontario Mills, and numerous Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Steampunk Conventions.
Their act combines the visual of robot pantomime with sketches, pop culture references, improvised comedic dialogue, and of course, original music. From their heartwarming nostalgic melodies to their funky cabaret rock, Steam Powered Giraffe’s songs are memorable, infectious, and as unique as the robots themselves.
Raj Ramayya is an Indo-Canadian singer, composer and lyricist. His claim to anime fame would be his musical collaborations with famed Japanese composer Yoko Kanno as a member of The Seatbelts. Raj sang the opening credits song “Ask DNA” and wrote the lyrics for “Cosmic Dare (Pretty with a Pistol)” from the fan favourite feature film Cowboy Bebop: the Movie, and both sang and wrote the lyrics for “Strangers” from the anime series Wolf’s Rain. Not limited to music in anime, he has also worked on songs for video games from the likes of Konami, Sega, and Capcom.
Raj has been featured as a guest vocalist/composer with several distinguished artists, ranging from talented composers Yoko Kanno (Escaflowne, Cowboy Bebop, Wolf’s Rain) and Tatsuya Oe (Captain Funk, Hotei), to gifted lyricists Chris Mosdell (Eric Clapton, YMO) and Ron Sexsmith, and everyone in-between. His work has won him multiple awards and critical acclaim from around the world.
Among his other projects are the electronic Indian fusion music project “Bhang Lassi”, the alternative Indian-influenced folk rock band “The Beautiful Losers”, and session singing for products ranging from Asahi Beer and KFC, to Toyota and Coca-Cola. He is also a guest vocalist with three different Japanese electronic music groups; Captain Funk, Akakage, and Studio Apartment, with SA’s song “Strawberry Rainbow” (which Raj both sung and wrote lyrics for) hitting #1 on the iTunes Japan charts! Raj is excited to be making a triumphant return to Anime Midwest and can’t wait to perform for everyone for the second year! For more information, you can visit him online at http://www.rajramayya.com.