One of the things I do to exorcise my creative demons is to create a music video from time to time. I’m constantly listening to music and movies and video have fascinated me since I first picked up an 8MM camera. It’s therapeutic for me, especially given the current state of the nation.
My partner, James, loves The Sopranos on HBO and has watched it for years. The theme song, “Woke Up This Morning” by Alabama 3, struck me the first time I heard it. The lyrics are dark and rebellious, things I appreciate a great deal from a creative standpoint. After thinking about the song for a while I searched for the meaning behind the lyrics and found it had nothing to do with mobsters, but was a previously recorded song about a woman in a destructive relationship. Still, I felt the words created a good backdrop for the issue of civil rights, and most everything I have any interest in creating at this point is in some way political.
I thought the original song was far too slow though, and had the wrong tone for what I wanted to do with it, so I remixed and extended it. When I started working on the video though, it became clear fairly quickly that I was trying to do too much. I wanted to cover everything from the history of black people and slavery in America, to American Indians, women’s rights, suffrage, Japanese internment camps, immigration, political corruption and the list went on and on…
So I stepped away from it for a while, until I realized I wanted the video to focus on one issue only, gay rights and our history, particularly the way we’ve been and continue to be treated in America. Frankly, until we’re equal in America to heterosexuals, with regards to civil and legal rights, that’s practically all I want to talk about.
To watch the music video, visit our Multi-Media Gallery and click on "Woke Up This Morning"