Friday, September 20, 2013

Austin Texas and Amelia Foxtrot

More traveling, more shooting, in search of 78 culture.  This time arriving in Austin Texas to shoot some film with Amelia Foxtrot of the Austin Phonograph Company.  Collected some footage of her DJing at the East Side Showroom.  With the symphony in red -- red phonograph horns, red lipstick, red dress, red velvet curtains -- it felt a little bit of a shame to be shooting in black and white.

A very good interview with Amelia as well, touching on both 78s and vintage culture.

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Austin is a charming place for a visitor to meander, to sample the many food trucks; although it gets pretty hot out in the sun, and so dashing from one bit of shade to the next seems to be the most efficient way to travel by foot.  Didn't see much of downtown, but stuck with the more eclectic neighborhoods to the east and south of town.

Screened some work at Experimental Response Cinema while I was there.  Nice turnout and nice reaction to the films.  Included the short piece "Victrola Cinema" with a portable phonograph supplying the soundtrack "live" for the event.

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A visit to Los Angeles to interview Rani Singh, director of the Harry Smith Archives.  Harry Smith was a fascinating person; an experimental filmmaker and animator, a collector of many interesting and neglected things, including 78 records of American music of the late 20s and early 30s; hillbilly music, Cajun music, old-time country music, blues singers, folk music.  Harry curated selections from his collection into a set of LP records in the early 50s, the "Anthology of American Folk Music," released by Folkways Records, and introducing old, lost music to a new and appreciative audience.

Next came a visit to Excavated Shellac for a fascinating discussion on collecting music from different cultures around the world - Eastern Europe, North Africa, the Middle East.

Very little left to gather with the camera to be done with shooting.  But saving one of the more unusual things for last, so stay tuned. . .

"That's all."