"So, what is this? Why do you do this? Are you just some uber-fan?" Emily sat on her bed, picking at her colorful high heels and asked. We both agreed they needed more camera time. Pilot was rotating every few seconds between laying restfully on the bed with Emily and taking swipes at licking the camera. I gave her a start and stop version of when and why we started the Wanderer Sessions project back in college in New Jersey. "Well, there was this. And then there was that. And, um, and then this and this." I wanted to duplicate myself and sit next to Emily so I can see my own self and say, very annoyingly, "Well, you don't even know do you? Do you? He doesn't know why he does it, Emily. So you shouldn't even bother playing anything."
But what continues to baffle me was that she did. Very beautifully and longingly and like her sixty-nine different predecessors, as if I was never there. There's this great balance or maybe it's a coexistence of sharp rock and a loving voice in her sound that was really what brought me into her home and into this collaboration in the first place. It's like saying, "I'll can both kick you so hard in the balls but nurse you back so sweetly after."
Watching all this footage weeks later, I realized you can mistake shards of her for others with the same voice or sound or hair but Emily is actually one of those special people that are so in-tune with themselves in their own music that it's sort of the reverse---she takes in and supplants and sharpens so many different great qualities that those pieces of others are the ones that you mistake for the complete Emily.
"Musicians are magicians," Vincent Moon had very aptly told me once. And despite that fact that I've found myself retreating back to him for answers on everything, answers on what exactly I'm doing, why I'm continuing on with this project for two years now, it's nice to know that when the camera starts rolling, it's exactly how I said it. I was never there. And neither are these questions. It's only the singing and the twang of electric guitar and the mysterious souvenir of a video soon after.
Wanderer Session#70: Emily Long
Music by Emily Long
Images, Sound, Edit by Kevin de Wilde
Filmed in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, New York
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