Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Filming it Righteously

Speaking from personal experiences, what are the Top5 songs that jump-start any celebration? Thinking......

If someone hires Ol' Video Joe to produce a DVD for their wedding, there's a good chance that the product will be an assemblage of slow, white fades with touches of soft romantic music - accompanied by moving images filmed with the utmost care and precision. After the mood is established and the ceremony is pieced together, I will often kick it into high gear, pick up the tempo, feel the beat, go for broke....ratchet it up a notch.

It's my philosophy that a Wedding DVD should show all aspects that make up the special day. I believe the setting must be established, the major players introduced, and the invitees acknowledged before I even begin to show the ceremony.

So how do I turn up the volume? Well, staying true to my stance that a wedding is not only a romantic occasion but also a celebration, I've always filmed people as they showed off their dance moves at the reception. I have realized that in each wedding, there is one song that brings everyone out on the dance floor. If I'm in position to film the scene as it happens, the sequence will usually find it's way on to the finished product. I use the scene as a back-drop as I maticulously edit other dance clips from the night - all to the beat of the music. This is one aspect of wedding videography that I feel I've mastered and makes my videos unique.

In the past, I have edited dance sequences to "You Sexy Thing" by Hot Chocolate, "If You're Gonna Play In Texas" by Alabama, "Hollaback Girl" (edited version) by Gwen Stefani, and "Thriller" by Michael Jackson to name a few. I've been told that it is the first scene that married couples show to others after the original viewing.

At bridal shows, when I feel that potential clients aren't giving me enough attention, I skip to the chapter with the Dance Video, turn up the volume, and watch as everyone crowds around my booth's display. The situation is similar to the scene in High Fidelity when Rob strategically plays a record by the Beta Band. He plays the song and hangs back, watching as the song grabs the attention of everyone in the store.

Bride to Be: "What's this?"
Video Joe: "It's a Dance Video...a Top5 Specialty."
Bride to Be: "'s good."
Video Joe: "I know."

So where am I going with all this? Recently I've had some eye-opening experiences that have led me to believe that maybe I should stop filming and editing these scenes that I love so much.

There's a code to follow in the videography business that says (paraphrasing) it is improper to show anyone in a negative light on the finished DVDs. Usually this applies only to "video testimonials" where friends and family wish the bride and groom health, happiness, etc. etc. I have had to decide many times whether or not a party-goer's inebriation was noticable on camera and whether or not said person would be embarrassed if I left their speech in. I've always leaned to the side of caution in these situations no matter how funny I thought their speech was. But recently, I've started to think that filming people drinking and dancing might fall within the realm of showing people in a "negative light".

The other day I recognized a Maid of Honor from a wedding I filmed a couple of years ago. I remembered that she was a part of one of these dance sequences that I showed very often at Bridal Shows. When I told her how I recognized her and how people loved that segment of the video, she responded with an "Oh GAWD". After one wedding, someone called me in a very sullen tone and asked me nicely to please erase all footage of them "acting ignorant". Some times people aren't as nice about it. This past weekend, while I was innocently filming the proceedings, a lady walked in front of my lens...turned, gave me the "Stink Eye", and told me that "I'd better not be filming her." Meagan K.(shoutout) witnessed the verbal reem-out and commented on its ferocity.

I've been thinking about how I would react if someone was filming me on the dance floor as I attempted to Bring SexyBack. I don't think I would care for it too much. I would probobly stop (much to the delight of all the ladies on the dancefloor)and head back to the keg or punch bowl and kick the vibe...George McFly style. But that's just me. I'm camera-shy.

In conclusion, I'm strongly considering removing the "Dance Video" from my price packages. I'm thinking that the unique quality of this service might be at some unwilling participants' expense. The jury is still out....

So what are the Top5 songs that jump-start any celebration? And to be specific, I'm listing songs that the casual music fan appreciates. I'm not talking about what songs that would be played at Frank's house with the Dawson Bros.(shout-out combined shot) attending.

5. Old Time Rock'n Roll by Bob Seger - It's old school but still does the trick.

4. Hey Ya by Outkast - This is one of the catchiest tunes since 2000. Shoutout to Paper Planes by M.I.A. and Time to Pretend by MGMT in that regard.

3. Girls Just Wanna Have Fun by Cindi Lauper - Every time its played, girls flood the dance floor. Guys too...unless they are fortunate enough to catch themselves before the Point of No Return.

2. Sweet Caroline by Neil Diamond - Side one, Track One

1. Friends in Low Places by Garth Brooks - This is also the greatest sing-along of all-time. Ready for a bold statement? Everybody likes this song.

Shoutout to Ice, Ice Baby and that song by Sir Mix-A-Lot that I've really never liked.

Until next time...
Let the High Times Carry the Low

Thursday, September 3, 2009


If you were to ask me in early April whether or not I believed the Rangers had a snowball's chance of making the playoffs, my answer would have been quite pessimistic. Like Coach Jim Mora, I would have hoped that they could just win a game. Like I wrote in my April 6th Jive, I had "blind hopefulness" that this was the year. But being the realist that I am, I knew that it was nothing but wishful thinking. I can't believe that it is early September and we are still in this thing. It's gonna be tough without Michael Young for two weeks but I gotta feeling it's gonna go down to the wire. There's no telling how many Winston's Ron Washington is gonna smoke this month. there is no doubt that we have a good team. We have......

Ian Kinsler - He is going to end up a 30-30 guy. Few second baseman's have ever done this.
Elvis Andrus - We have found our starting shortstop for years to come.

Michael Young - He's having a career-year. Future Hall of Famer? Discuss.

Chris Davis - It was very beneficial for him to go to the minors and work on his mechanics. I said it before and still believe it...he will be a star one day.

Hank Blalock - Thanks for the memories. I'm sure Frank thanks you for paying for his Grad school.

Pudge Rodriguez - It's good to have him home. He should play everyday.

Taylor Teagarden - You can't hit 190 and expect to be the starting catcher...especially when the catcher on the bench is a first-ballot hall of famer that can still go.

Jarrod Saltalamachia - At least he's good on defense...

Josh Hamilton - Someone told me that as soon as he gets red-hot, the Rangers should trade him. Sadly, I agree. With his relapse in January, "The Bone" is just too big of a risk. BTW, I've never seen a single's hitter who can hit the ball 600 ft. Very strange.

Marlon Byrd - There has been talks that the Rangers will not attempt to sign him next year. I think that is a bad mistake. He's a spiritual leader who leads by example. The Rangers need him.

Nelson Cruz - It took him 30 years, but he finally got it together. He's a big threat in the line-up and I hope this year is not a fluke.

Andrew Jones - Nice comeback...better smile. Thanks for stopping by.

David Murphy - The "Murph-Dog" is a quality ball player. I would still let him go before Marlon.

Julio Borbon - This guy is very impressive. Could he be then next Rickey H. Henderson?

Omar Vizquel - I've never seen anyone play the infield so effortlessly. I think he should be resigned for next year.

C.J. Wilson - He hasn't made me nearly as mad as he has in the past. He's having a decent year.

Scott Feldman - He's probobly the best pitcher on the team.

Kevin Millwood - You get a lecture from Big Tex and you'd straighten out too.

Neftalli Feliz - He needs a nickname. "Fireball" Feliz?

Derek Holland - Ol' Meatball has had no-hitter stuff a few times this year.

Brandon McCarthy - He looks like Hank Williams Sr.

Frank Francisco - He was dominating before his illness and injury. It looks like he's gotten it together again. If he doesn't, I'm sure everyone will boo him out of town like they did CoCo.

Ron Washington - Give that man a smoke.

Stay Hard...Stay Hungry... Stay Alive,