If imitation is indeed the sincerest form of flattery, consider us tickled pink by E.B. the Younger’s new video.
Lee: It’s funny, because the guy who plays the host is my partner at Stereo Skateboards, Chris Pastras, and that’s kind of our aesthetic. We’ve had the company since 1992 and we had actually done a pilot for MTV, Stereo Sound Agency, that was kind of in the vein of Playboy After Dark. The show never got picked up, but it was really funny: It had a bunch of skits in it, a band played, there was skateboarding footage—kind of in that campy Playboy After Dark thing. So when Eric mentioned that he wanted to do a video kind of in the vein of Playboy After Dark in his bar in Denton, which kind of has that vibe, it was perfect.
We’re hearing covers of Journey and all these random songs just pulsating through the floor as we’re doing dialogue. Everybody in between takes was singing along.
Lee: I was first going to shoot it in 16mm. I think I’ve done three projects prior in 16mm with Midlake, and we did a live concert on digital. But 16mm was costly, so I talked to Daniel and Sarah and I said, "It’s gonna be a lot easier to do video; let’s use camcorders, like VHS or something." But we didn’t have time to get the cameras so I said, "All right, let’s just use digital cameras but shoot 4x3 aspect ratio and just wash it out—make it look as much like video as we can." As you can see, it’s pretty low-contrast and it’s got that ultra presence that you see with TV, and they were able to figure out what the frame rate of old TV programs was back then. They did a really good job. They made their fancy digital cameras look like old video tape, which I thought was great. We threw up a few lights here and there and we just went for it.
Lee: I will say that Paschall bar is on the top floor, and below that there’s another bar—and there was a band playing over there, so we could hear it. It was a cover band, and as we’re filming our video we’re hearing covers of…
Lee: I think Kate [Siamro, who styled the video] saw some episodes, and most of the extras were friends and they were directed to bring certain items of clothing. But I don’t think anybody knew what we were doing, Eric, did they?
Lee: Well obviously, like any kid, finding the magazines. Who didn’t know about Playboy magazine? I’m guessing my older brother must’ve had some magazines lying around after the ‘70s or ‘80s.
Lee: Yeah. My family and I wanted to change things up for a little bit, maybe try to get some land. And we thought about coming out here because we knew Eric and the Midlake guys, and I had come out here a bunch of times over the years working on other projects with the band. And so we did that, I think four years ago now. They were the connection.
Lee: Oh, yeah. We all live pretty close to each other. Chris is out in L.A, and I go out there or he comes out here. Between the whole Midlake band, Chris Pastras and myself, how many kids do we have? Jeez, I think it’s probably about 30 kids.