Whidbey Island Gravity

How’s this for an adventure: helping with a music video shoot for Vienna Teng just a few miles north of where I live in Seattle?!

Here’s the deal – I heard one of her tunes on NPR a few years ago, heard another on the local radio station, and bought the disc. And then have been lucky enough to have seen her and her band play twice here in town – including in May, when Puja and I enjoyed a great dinner and show at the Triple Door on our anniversary!

So – I subscribed to the "when will Vienna be in Seattle next" feed – and when Vienna sent a note out to the Seattle dwellers asking for help with the music video – we signed up!

Puja wasn’t feeling well, so I headed out to Whidbey Island early on Saturday, not really knowing what to expect. I’ve played a lot of music, done a bit of video work and so on – so I was a little worried that the minute I started talking I’d be branded as a whack job – signing up to volunteer just to see if I could curry favor for a record deal or something.

But the truth was even better – I got to help with the video shoot, meet Vienna, the Whidbey Island hosts, the production crew – it was a really fun day.

(Production Crew really means the team at Fat Monster, the Director of Photography, and the Talent!)

We started with makeup (not for me, mind you) – had to make sure that Vienna looked the way she did the day before. So we had a couple of hours to talk, which was really nice – great to find out that the way she comes across on stage and through her music are quite like what she’s like in person – smart, fun to talk with, very well developed sense of humor, gracious. Nice. Reinforces my sense that most people on this planet are pretty good – no matter where they live, what kind of work they do, and so on.

We headed back to the house where we were staying, and I met Norm (the actor for the video) and the rest of the crew. We spent a few hours shooting footage, where my primary job was to hold and carry things. My day job keeps my pretty busy – so it was really nice to be in an environment where all I had to do was follow direction. And make a joke or two now and then!

We took a break for lunch, and then went down to the beach for more camera work. Also very fun – really neat watching a film crew get what they need, do it in the most orderly fashion they could and so on.

It reminded my of my time in musical theatre and rock bands – plenty of time to crack jokes, tease your friends, and then get on with the work at hand for a few minutes before getting back to the joking and all.

We finished up, went back to the house, had a beer and warmed up, chatted . . . All in all – a great way to spend a day. I can’t wait to see the final footage – and hope that I managed to keep my fingers and toes out of the frame!


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