Tue, 03 July 2007
Sunday afternoon I came back from grocery shopping to a message from Jay: “Do you want to be an extra in a country music video shoot in Warman? Call me back.” An acquaintance of his is a makeup artist and she was working on this video for some American country singer named, I believe, Dirk Rattan. I’m not sure about the Dirk part, but I’m pretty sure about the Rattan part, because when I asked the Assistant Director to repeat the name he said, “Rattan like the wicker furniture.”
Update: Actually, it’s Deric Ruttan, he’s Canadian, and the video in question can be seen here.
It was at this old concrete factory in Warman, where Dirk Rattan and a couple dozen hot girls were pretending to have a spontaneous blue collar country jamboree. The girls were all dressed in denim miniskirts or Daisy Dukes, cowboy hats, and high heels. They were obviously being paid to be there. Scattered among them were a few fat people, ugly people, and nerds like me & Jay, who were obviously there cos they had nothing better to do. The song was about working in a coal mine, or maybe a salt mine. I don’t know why they chose to shoot it in a concrete factory, or for that matter, in Saskatchewan. I guess cos it’s cheaper to film up here. Imagine how much Daisy Duke girls must charge by the hour down in Nashville.
We showed up pretty late, so we only got to be in a few shots where we clapped our hands above our head while Dirk Rattan did that thing country musicians do where they kind of hold the guitar off to one side of the body and pretend like they’re strumming it really hard. Rock musicians invented that move, but it seems nowadays to be mostly a country thing. Also, bad goatees and singing like Eddy Vedder used to be exclusively a rock thing, but now they’ve both migrated over to country. I guess country is like rock’s younger sibling who has to wear all rock’s no-longer-fashionable castoffs.
Dirk Rattan seemed pretty nice. He signed autographs and posed for pictures with all the extras, some of whom may even have known who he was. Jay got to chat with his makeup artist friend, which is the main reason we went. We’ve got a short script requiring special makeup effects that we may like to film in the nearish future.
Afterward Jay showed me some footage from the video we shot in Vonda last weekend. The video is looking a little dicey just now. It’s not that any of the individual shots are especially bad, it just doesn’t flow together all that well when you put it to the music. But even more importantly, I look really stupid. All my hair is mysteriously piled up on the back of my head so it looks like I’m wearing a lumpy yarmulke. Why didn’t someone say something? Something like, “Hey, beanie boy, pat down your hairdo, it looks like you’re trying to hide a Pizza Pop up there”? At least in that other video my face was covered by a mask for all but the last thirty seconds. I should wear that mask all the time. Or I guess a hat would be easier.
So Jay and I played around with the footage for a couple hours until he got depressed and we gave it up. I figure there are two possible ways he can salvage the video. A) He can do the whole thing in slow-motion, to make it look all dramatic and intense. B) He can do it all in fast-motion, to make it seem funny. Or maybe C) we can shoot some footage of me and Andrew playing the song, to break up all the stuff in the restaurant. Damn, I wish I’d thought of this earlier. We could’ve piggybacked on Dirk Rattan’s concrete factory shoot. The lights and the fog machine and the girls were all there already, all we had to do was sneak up onstage while Dirk was in his trailer having his goatee groomed.