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Music, travel focus of Austin-based reality show

Gary Dinges, Static

Staff Writer
Austin 360
Lauren Bucherie and CJ Vinson, of Austin company the Sessions, are filming a new show called 'Sound Tracks.'

Music and travel are two of my favorite things.

Yours, too, I'm guessing.

So "Sound Tracks," a new reality show being produced by the Sessions, a local production company run by Lauren Bucherie and CJ Vinson, looks to be a winner.

"The whole premise is to have audiences join us on the road while we explore different American cities in search of your next favorite band," Bucherie told me. "The show appeals to anyone who likes music, history and culture. This is a show for everyone."

Bucherie and Vinson met at Austin's MediaTech Institute in 2009 and formed the Sessions a short time later. They've since worked on a variety of projects, big and small, including more than 70 music videos.

Now their attention is focused on shooting six to eight installments of "Sound Tracks," which would be enough to get the show through its first season.

"On each episode, CJ and I will team up with local music icons, journalists and scenesters to get a detailed look into the city's musical past and present," Bucherie said. "The goal is to mine local musical treasures and uncover the ways in which music has helped shape the overall culture of the city."

A network hasn't stepped forward just yet to air "Sound Tracks," but Bucherie believes it'd be a good fit for the Discovery or Travel cable channels. Online streaming via Hulu or another site is a possibility, too, she said.

"Our goal with this show is to do what we love: Discover new music and share it with the world," Bucherie said.

More ‘Wars' on A&E

Fresh episodes of "Shipping Wars," featuring locally based uShip and produced by Austin's Megalomedia, are back, airing at 8 p.m. Tuesdays on A&E.

The reality series features several colorful characters — including Austinite Jennifer Brennan — bidding to transport a variety of crazy shipments, such as a ginormous yard gnome.

For the show's second season, A&E has ordered 26 installments of "Shipping Wars." Each episode typically draws 2.5 to 3 million viewers, according to uShip.

In addition to exposure aplenty in the U.S., uShip is now getting play in Latin America. A&E recently started airing "Guerra de Envios," the show dubbed in Spanish, in 18 countries.

New network coming

"Machete" director Robert Rodriguez is hard at work on his latest project: a cable TV network. El Rey, set to launch next year, will feature programming aimed at young Latinos who speak primarily English.

Antoinette Alfonso Zel was picked this week to help shape the network, serving as CEO. She has previously worked for NBC Universal and MTV Networks, as well as La Comunidad, a well-known advertising agency.

"Antoinette's remarkable track record in network management and her passion for youth culture and creative vision uniquely positions her to lead El Rey as it creates compelling images and inspiring stories that speak to America's young Latino and mainstream audiences," Rodriguez, who attended the University of Texas, said in El Rey's announcement.

Channel surfing ...

Travel Channel's "All You Can Meat" debuts Sunday, spotlighting host Chuey Martinez's search for "the nation's most mouth-watering, succulent and perfect cuts of meat." One of the stops is, of course, the Austin area, where Martinez stops by the Triple C Ranch to sample some brisket. Back-to-back episodes air at 9 p.m. ... MundoFox, Fox's new Spanish-language broadcast network, debuts Monday but, as of now, it won't be seen on any station here in Central Texas. Viewers in many other Texas cities will be able to pick up MundoFox over the air, though, including Beaumont, Bryan, Dallas, El Paso, Harlingen, Houston, Odessa, San Antonio, Tyler and Waco. ... "The Austin Variety Show" will record its next episode Aug. 18 at its Highland Mall studios. Doors open at 8 p.m., and taping is set to begin at 9:15 p.m. The show airs Saturdays at midnight on KBVO, Austin's MyTV station. More details at austinvarietyshowlive.com. ... Read my blog at austin360.com/tvblog or follow @gdinges on Twitter to get the latest updates on local radio and TV stations.

Contact Gary Dinges at gdinges@statesman.com or 912-5987