Kenneth "Todd Nathanson" Munson, (born: June 3, 1984YouTube who, until April 2018, was also one of the more prominent members of Channel Awesome. His three primary series are Todd's Pop Song Reviews, One Hit Wonderland, and Trainwreckords.) better known online as Todd in the Shadows, is a music reviewer on
has been a blogger on TGWTG.com and musical talent on YouTube until 2010. He was a fan of the site for a long time before deciding to become part of the Channel Awesome family. He found the site through 5 Second Movies before the site went live in April of 2008. He reviews current (usually bad) pop music and, starting in 2012, one-hit-wonders of the past. In addition, he occasionally reviews music-related movies.
In his videos, he plays the piano (having spent eleven years playing piano) and he wears a gray hoodie in order to keep his true identity secret. The reasons for this are unclear -- he has alternately claimed that he hides his face to protect his position as a Sunday school teacher, as a secret agent, and as White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs. At other times, he has said that he doesn't want his face attached to the "hamburger incident." His image-consciousness led him to do his reviews in profile silhouette, which adds to his mysteriousness. When not 'in the shadows' such as during crossover videos and during the events of Suburban Knights, Todd wears a Zorro-esque bandanna that covers everything above his mouth (though it is revealed in Surburban Knights that he can't even see out of his mask, to the point of mistaking a pole for one of the villains).
Todd claims that he didn't get into pop music until an incident in 2007 when the antenna came off of his car. Because he didn't have money to fix it, he listened to pop music over and over because that was the only station that came on, and eventually he got into it. He started to review the songs he heard over and over in his personal blog. He then started filming his reviews and posting them as blogs on TGWTG under the name "MBI"; two early reviews were chosen as Awesome Blogs of the Week, which greatly increased his popularity on YouTube. As he built his fanbase, he was invited to come on to Channel Awesome.
On March 22nd, 2018, Todd announced on Twitter that he parted ways with Channel Awesome. He will continue to make reviews on his YouTube channel.
Every video depicts Todd sitting in a chair in a darkened room, with his side to the camera, wearing a gray hoodie that conceals his face. This is why he's known as Todd in the Shadows. At the start of every review he plays the piano rendition of the song he'll be talking about for several seconds before getting into the actual review itself.
Todd's Pop Song Reviews
The most frequent series on Todd's channel is Todd's Pop Song Reviews, where he reviews a recent hit song that appeared on the top 100 pop charts. The genre isn't a major issue, as long as it's considered "popular music", although this is usually in the realm of Pop, Rap, Hip Hop, R&B, and other genres of those types. In addition, they don't actually have to be a recently released song when he reviews them, only that they recently became a hit. He'll typically do the review the same week that they became a hit so he doesn't risk waiting too long and them not being a hit anymore.
One Hit Wonderland
A One Hit Wonder is a band or artist that's only ever had one hit song, regardless of how many other songs that they may have had; a common theme are bands and artists from other countries that are only known for one song in America but achieve more success in their native country. This is a series where Todd goes in depth with discussing the careers of such bands or artists. The decade isn't an issue here. He'll listen to one hit wonders from the 50s (or possibly before), 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, 2000s, or 2010s. The following segments are used in his One Hit Wonderland videos, in this order: Before the Hit, The Hit, The Failed Follow-up, Did They Do Anything Else?, and Did They Deserve Better?
At the end of every year, Todd does his top ten best hit songs of the year and his top ten worst hit songs of the year. Plus, he'll occasionally do top ten best hit songs and top ten worst hit songs of a randomly selected year of music history.
This was Todd's primary side series, which has been discontinued as of October 2016. This is where he would go into the filmography of popular singer & songwriter Madonna, and review her movies. The only movie review segment on Todd's channel. They were always negative reviews, as he felt that Madonna was a terrible actress, director, and film writer. The series was discontinued after he completely finished her filmography, but said that if she ever makes another movie again, which he sees highly unlikely, then he would briefly revive the series again.
Todd's newest series, he analyzes albums which caused an artist or band to decline in popularity, or in the case of a band, break up. Unlike Pop Song Reviews and One Hit Wonderland, Todd doesn't play a piano cover at the start, instead doing so at the end of the video, either a song from the album in question, or a more well known and successful song by the same band.
I'm a guy who listens to pop music.
And since 2009, I've had an internet video series where I discuss the most overplayed songs on the radio in-depth, under the name Todd in the Shadows. I call myself that because I do this under the cover of a shadow while I play my piano.
It's a silly gimmick. But it's a silly show! You can't sit and talk about Pitbull songs without being kind of goofy. But in between the silly jokes, I like to think I provide an insightful and witty look into the music most people write off as disposable junk. Because I don't hate pop music; I love pop music. I love listening to it, writing about it, analyzing what each song means.
So what specifically do you look at?
I have two main shows: the first is the one I started with, Todd's Pop Song Reviews, where I take one current smash hit song and take it apart, break it down line by line, see what parts work and what doesn't, and analyze where it fits within both current trends and the artist's body of work. And I might liven this up with a bunch of jokes, perhaps by inuring myself in a comical way. Ha ha!
The other main show is One Hit Wonderland, where I take a look at the full careers of bands and artists known for only one song. This series is a trip through music history, as seen through the prism of a particular artist who only had one hit before fading from memory. Why did they fail? Who came along to replace them? Were they any good? Did they deserve better?
Along with those I do quite a few specials along the way -- Top Tens and Bottom Tens at the end of every year, plus for randomly select years every so often; reviews of badly received pop star movie vehicles; vlogs of major musical events like the Grammy's; and whatever else passes my fancy.
Why should I give you my money?
Because my show is awesome! And I've been giving it to you for free for years!
Also there are rewards! Pledge up to $10 to a video and you get your name in the credits. Plus I'm planning some exclusives! Perhaps some other things as I see fit! Let's find out together!
Tier Reward Goals
- 2$ or more per month
- Early Access to Videos
- 10$ or more per video
- Your name in the credits!
Stretch Reward Goals
- 1,000 or more per month (REACHED)
- If I hit this milestone, I'll do another Top Ten List of a randomly chosen year of Billboard history.
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This page was created by JakCooperThePlumber on November 16, 2016.