This would be my "America!!! F*CK YEA!" video. I received a very nice email from a very nice wife inquiring about the possibility of getting a music video for her husbands new song "American Dirt." They were planning a trip to Austin and were thinking that while they were down here getting one shot might make the trip all the more worthwhile.
So they sent the song over. When Aron said the line "And I'm proud of the soldiers that fought, and the ones that are fighting right now" I was in. 11 months ago I did a music video for "Free Agent" just days before one of its members, J Brooka, shipped off to Afghanistan. (vimeo.com/24435370) We've been in contact via the web a handful of times throughout his time there and am always relieved to get a message. At the time of this writing he has a month left to go and I, along with all his friends and family, can't wait to have him back safe.
For me that was the motivation. The video came together relatively quick to coincide with their coming to Austin. Initially it was fairly simple but then the thought of Aron getting an actual tattoo came to mind. Though he all but scoffed at the idea, Amanda (remember I said she was a very nice wife) loved it and somehow convinced him to do it. And of course I'd be remiss if I didn't mention how awesome my tattooist Nathan Hebert is. Not just for the great tattoo he gave Aron for the vid but also for being willing to come in and do it on his day off. And big thanks to Atomic Tattoo on Burnet for letting us shoot in the shop. (atomic-tattoo.com) Note to Nate: We need to finish my sleeve ASAP! =)
You can check out Nathan's other work or book him here: natestattoos.com/
The night before we were to shoot I had yet another idea after being told they had their two sons coming with. I through out the idea that it might be cool, if we were even able, to find various public service type uniforms and have them more or less represent the either our future or a younger version of those in service now. They managed to get the costumes the day of the shoot and we bounced around Austin finding suitable backgrounds as we went. I feel I should apologize to all the women out there who take on the same roles as men and unfortunately are not represented in the video but these were the kids they had, don't fault me for them not having a daughter! Do know that its as dedicated to you as to them =)
I also have to give a quick nod to Angela Lee for finding us the great location to shoot the band. (austinlocationscout.com) While I often don't mind the fun of "gorilla" type shooting (just find a location and set up shop wherever I think might look groovy) it's never fun getting kicked out of a location and with Aron and fam being in from out of town and not a whole lotta time to switch gears if something like that happened, it was nice having a great location with the landowners permission. Not to mention the landowner seemed to enjoy our little shebang and invited the entire band, cast and crew up to his house for a celebratory beer after we wrapped.
This was shot on a Sony PMW-F3 and edited in Sony Vegas.