Brainiac: Vincent Come On Down

In 1996, I asked Howard Greynolds at Touch n' Go if I could direct a music video for one of the labels bands. He assigned me Brainiac's "Vincent Come On Down." For two thousand dollars. With such a tight budget, I called in a lot of favors. The set was my friend's rooftop on Cornelia Street. The props came from my living room. I had Tori Chickering whip out her Bolex camera, and my brother, Jerry Karp function as production assistant. Later I asked two of my top of the line editor friends, Michael Perillo and Rosanna Herrick, to cut the video for me. Everything costs money; the trick is how to stretch that dollar for all its worth. So that's the short version of the production side.

Directing the band, that was a dream. All four members—Juan Monasterio, John Schmersal, Timmy Taylor and Tyler Trent—were up for anything. From Dayton, Ohio, they were a band filled with youthful energy, with grand ambitions, with frenetic talent. Each man was sensitive and kind, no rockstar egos, just the alluring work ethic, the collaborative spirit of real creative folk who wanted to do whatever was asked of them. It was a cold day when we shot the video, I think it was February 1996, and they didn't complain, not about the cold, or how long things took to shoot, or how lo-fi the whole thing was.

Later, when they saw the video, I got a phone call from Timmy Taylor, psyched, and every grateful. That's how cool these guys were. Calling the director to say thank you.

So this is a link from a VHS copy of the video. The original? I'm not sure where it is. One day, I'll find it I'm sure of it. ;-)

Reclaim Your Vote.

The Reclaim Campaign.

Maxine Waters reclaimed her time, and in doing so, turned the very definition of "reclaim" into a rallying cry of empowerment: don't get in my way. 

This election is a pivotal moment for the Black community and in 2020, BET is Reclaiming it. The RECLAIM campaign addresses the issues most prevalent in our hearts and minds: the end of police brutality, the imperative for affordable health care, and navigating the election process. We are launching a modular strategy that will inform our community on how to register, to understand the ballots, to exercise our powerful and American right—to vote—as well as the tangible importance of participating in the census, of being counted, of determining where billions of federal funds are spent. We will implement our strategic campaign not only with broadcast and social spots, but with a robust library of assets that includes, but is not limited to: flyers, posters, billboards, experiential, pop ups, and merchandise. Every facet of our campaign heralds our critical call to action—to Reclaim. Reclaim your Vote.  Reclaim your Count. 

In 2020, we are going to be heard.