Terry Callier - A Video Interview


Amid all the hair-on-fire hysteria about a need for new models for funding journalism - and I speak as one with a severely singed scalp - the thought occurs that there are things we can do as journalists to broaden our client base. So earlier this year I teamed up with my brother, an experienced TV news cameraman and editor new to the freelance fold after the thick end of two decades in the employ of Central TV, to see if there were any projects we could work on jointly. This is the first fruits of that partnership - a short EPK (electronic press kit: basically, a biog in video form) on the great Chicago singer-songwriter, Terry Callier.

The idea was that, sometimes, EPKs are left to film-makers who may not be music specialists, and could end up lacking context and content; by pooling resources, we can provide a quality offering to artists, labels and managers that also has the added benefit of requiring only the one tranche of time (a written biography is part of the package, and that gets written up from the same interview used in the EPK). Callier's a fine first subject, and we're grateful to him, his band, his manager, Meira Shore, Outpost Media and all at Mr Bongo for giving us the opportunity to make this piece. Thanks are also due to Union Chapel, who allowed us to film Terry and his band during a gig and soundcheck earlier this year, and the K-West Hotel, where the interview footage was shot. 

I'm keen to know what people think of this, whether good, bad or inbetween - both the EPK itself, and the idea of the service in general. Please do leave comments below, and if you're someone from a label, management company or other entity who might want something similar doing, please drop me a line via the Contact page. 


Nicely lit and shot, maybe could be slimmed down a bit?

posted by: Jake: 3 Oct, 2009 11:13:03

Thanks Jake. I wondered if it was a shade long; though both the greatest advantage and the biggest challenge with trying to tell a story as full and complex as Terry's is that there's always going to be too much information to fit whatever format you're working to. There was some wonderful stuff from him talking about a John Coltrane gig in Chicago which was of pivotal importance to him as an artist, but it would have added three minutes at least, and ultimately didn't help tell the story any better, so had to go. Hopefully this will be something I'll learn to balance better as - if? - we get further opportunities to do this kind of work, and with more feedback from people with experience.



posted by: Angus: 3 Oct, 2009 12:03:47

Really enjoyed this Angus... Terry Callier is such a great subject. Good to see you taking a proactive approach to the changes going on in the industry today. Being a journalist isn't just about writing - it involves skills that are required throughout the media (and beyond) - print is but one small aspect. I think this EPK approach is a great new model that music journos new and old should aspire to. Look forward to the next one.

posted by: Martin James: 3 Oct, 2009 18:51:03

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