Back in March I went to Thelonious Jazz Club in Bellavista with my roommate, Mateo. Mateo is a musician and is back in Germany preparing for an entrance exam to a keyboard technician program (I think). He and I finally had the opportunity to hit up Thelonious and the place was awesome. Excellent music. Great atmosphere. Not too cold, not too warm. Not overpriced. There was just a 2,000 CLP ($4 USD) cover charge plus a drink. That night I met Jenn Jade Ledesna, a jazz singer from the Bronx who was scouting musicians for a series of shows to be played here in Santiago during the month of April. One of the musicians performing that night was Chilean saxophonist Agustin Moya.
I got to see Jenn play with Agustin at the Municipal Theater of Las Condes, and I decided to reach out to Agustin about a potential interview. Fast forward to Saturday, May 5. I went to Thelonious to record some video and audio from a performance.
I showed up with plenty of time in advance, which worked perfectly. I got a seat up front with time and space to set up. I had never really recorded live music before. So this was definitely a lesson in improvisation, one-man banding and live sound.
I used a friend’s Nikon D3100 to shoot video. It was fairly easy to use. I set it up on a tripod and I definitely did not frame the shot correctly. You’ll see in the video. I didn’t fix it until the end of this one particular song. I also did not know how to change the length of time that you can leave it on record (or if that is possible to begin with). The camera was only set to 10 minutes. **I just remembered some DSLR cameras only shoot 10 minute clips.** Luckily, I made it back to my spot (I was shooting with a second camera from the floor) before the camera shut off. You’ll see though. It’s the exact same shot, which is a major no-no.
I also did not record much of the piano player, which I wish I would have done. I didn’t exactly come in with a major plan or shot list (another no-no). I came in only with the idea of getting footage of the saxophonist (assuming and hoping there will be an interview).
The audio was all synced manually. I was able to use the Nikon audio and Marantz 620PMD audio for the main sync. I used the Canon for the shorter close-up shots, which was the trickier and more time-consuming audio to sync. I did buy Plural Eyes finally, but it wasn’t available to me during the making of this particular video. Hah! I did record the next song in the set and I took more shots, if I remember correctly, so I’ll get to use Plural Eyes for the next video and hopefully it’ll come out a little better.
One of the main reasons for doing this was simply to get back into video. I haven’t touched Final Cut since being in Chile. Unfortunately, due to the job, I haven’t needed to or had the opportunity to do so. This was merely a fun exercise in trying to get back into a habit of shooting and editing. I certainly had fun and I know where I made my mistakes and where I can improve.
The musicians are:
Julio Laks, piano
Agustin Moya, saxophone
Milton Russel, bass
Cristóbal Massis, drums
Shot with Canon PowerShot G12 and Nikon D3100. Audio recorded with Marantz PMD620. Recorded on May 5, 2012. Edited in Final Cut Pro 7 on May 6, 2012. Produced by Nathan Frandino