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project background for

Trevor Tanner

The British Legend - Trevor Tanner - Live

Trevor Tanner

The phone rang on Sunday, April 20, 2008. It was my son, Jim. He called to ask me if I would like to go to a neighbor's house that afternoon and shoot a video of a guy that sings and plays the guitar. I had no plans, so I said I would lke to do that. I loaded up the gear and went to Jim's house. From there we went a couple of houses down the street to his neighbor's house. His name is Kurt and he has his basement nicely decorated as an Irish pub. Jim and I set up the equipment. We were going to do a two camera shoot. Then Trevor shows up, picks up his ten string guitar and starts to play. Immediately I am saying to myself, "Who is this guy? He's good." During breaks I start asking him questions and it turns out that he is Trevor Tanner. He has been in several bands in England. He was the front-man for a British chart band called The Bolshoi and is the celebrated father of Brit-Pop. He got tired of doing that and quit for awhile. During that time he moved to Florida. Then not too long before our meeting, he decided to pursue a music career again, but this time as a solo act. The video that I was producing was to be used for the purpose of getting him more engagements. That was the video we made that day. It is called "The British Legend - Trevor Tanner - Live"


Eaten by the Sea - the musicfilme

Trevor Tanner

Trevor has several websites, including trevortanner.com, myspace and wikipedia.com. The MySpace website has samples of his music which I listened to many times. At that time, he was going to release a new CD entitled "Eaten by the Sea". I decided I would like to make a MusicFilme for him. We talked about it and he liked the idea. So on November 28, 2008, Trevor was in Connecticut playing in a club in Torrington. We met there, he signed the release form and that started the project.
The project was shot at Eric Martenson's house in Springfield, in Granby by the Granby Oak and in Branford at Stoney Creek. Ah...Stoney Creek. When you see the sequence of Rebecca in her summer dress dropping the ring into the sea, the temperature was in the single digits. You wouldn't know that to watch her.
In June, about a week before the Connecticut Film Industry Training Program was to begin, I decided to finish this project and not let it linger on. Well, the first day of the film training I met Martha Bradshaw. She is a graphic artist that has done such things as art for comic books. I showed her the film and she very politely told me that the graphics needed to have some attention. During the next two weeks she would make suggestions and I would go home every night and work on them. I would show it to her the next day and she would make more suggestions. After two weeks of this, the transitional graphics were looking much better. Thank you, Martha.

"Eaten By The Sea" was shown at the Norwalk Tunnel of Film and on several local television stations.

Eaten By The Sea - the filme

This is the second version of the Eaten By The Sea filme. It came about one day when Jacob Paul Bean, 3D animator and I were working on another project. We discussed the possibility of adding animated wedding rings to the transitions in the song. My favorite animation is when the ring falls into the water at the end. The result was this new version which was filme oriented and not music video oriented.

Eaten By The Sea - the MusicFilme redux

Eaten by the Sea - a James W. Hawk filme

It was November 2013, I took a look at Eaten By The Sea for the first time in two or three years. I was not happy. It was good for its time, but I had moved on. I could make this look so much better and I could do it in a day or two. Easier said than done. I worked on it for more than two weeks and it looked much better.
Before I go on, I would like to make a few comments on style. My style has been called “unusual” which means different in a positive way. Just following the herd will never put you in a special place. By today’s accepted standard Eaten By The Sea - the musicfilme is not cut from the same cloth as contemporary mucic videos. I feel very uncomfortable with today’s music videos. I'm left with the feeling that I have just watched a machine gun in action. Most shots are so short I’m not sure what I just saw. To me, if you want to see a great music video watch any of Michael Jackson’s. They tell a story and I like that. They enhance the viewing pleasure of the song. They don’t rip you away from the song with all of that herky-jerky action. Call me old fashion.
What started out as a quick fix turned into a full blown rework. The color was wrong, the timing was wrong, the shots had to be reordered, some shots were deleted and others added. The whole plan for the musicfilme was changed. There were two versions in the beginning. They were combined into one. Everything was changed one way or another. When it was finished it was a much better package.
Almost everyone asks about the tree that Trevor is playing in front of. The tree is in Granby, CT. It’s on private property, which I didn’t know. So while we were shooting the owner came over and asked what we were doing. I thought he was going to pull the plug on us, but thankfully he didn’t.

Eaten by the Sea - experimental musicfilme

In January 2015, I made yet another version of Eaten by the Sea. I made it into an experimental musicfilme.

Eaten by the Sea - Video Storyboard

Trevor Tanner

A MusicFilme unlike a normal film is constrained by the length and structure of the song. It also should be timed with the beat of the music, so I made a video storyboard to get a feel for the shots and timing that was needed. This helped me to compose the video and plan the shoot, but as it turned out most of this fell by the side during editing. At any rate, this sort of planning provided me with way more coverage than what I needed and that is a good thing. The other thing about a MusicFilme that I would like to mention is that it is not a music video. It is a film that is guided by the words and meaning of the song. It is a short movie that expresses the song in visual terms and in a film format. Eaten by the Sea is about a couple that breaks up. It explores their lives before, during and after that break up.

Eaten by the Sea - Behind the Scenes

This is still in the planning stage and what I would really like to accomplish here is to define the MusicFilme and discuss the role of the video storyboard.

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