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Friday, 29 October 2010

Further Planning - Lyrical Breakdown - Joe Jones

The next step in the planning stage was to breakdown the song lyrically and in doing this, perhaps find inspiration for ideas and start to get a general idea for the themes of the song and how you can incorporate this into your video. We found this exercise incredibly helpful in terms of coming up with potential material. We had already decided on a number of elements in our video, such as locations and costume. However, we found that looking simply at the lyrics gave us a lot of inspiration for ideas. For example, we decided upon a bathroom sequence for comedic effect, coinciding with the lyric 'flushin' mc's down the loo'. In addition to this, we saw this lyric:
I fight old school, bring your bat and your chopper,
And a First Aid Kit, and some antiseptic, this could get hectic
and decided that we would have our middle class protagonists reveal that whenever they go out they would carry a first aid kit, with the main character wagging his finger at the camera like a nagging mother. Again, this was a way to show clearly that our characters are certainly not 'ghetto', however much they'd like to be.

Shot List - Planning

Shot List

1. Extreme close up – Depicting Mouth saying OIIIII
2. Panning shot – Showing the middle class Suburban setting for our music video.
3. Mid close up of feet
4. Mid shot – Show back of heads, all viewer sees is hoods, sense of mystery.
5. Tracking shot – moves upwards, revealing the identity of the protagonists.
6. Mid shot – Characters walk towards the camera threateningly
7. Long shot – Shows boys next to mansion, again reiterating the rich background.
8. Low angle mid shot, boys rap aggressively into camera – quintessential rap shot.
9. Mid shot – depicts main character at golf course.
10. Mid/long shot – shows two characters taking swings.
11. Mid shot – of boys and the Toyota Yaris
12. Mid/long shot – of main character attempting golf swing and missing completely.
13. Long shot – showing James singing his heart out in a spotlight.
14. Close up – ‘I hear the sound’
15. Mid shot – James reveling in his performance.
16. Tracking shot – shows Yaris zooming round a corner.
17. Close up – Character raps inside the car.
18. Mid/close up – Rapping out of the window.
19. Extreme close up – depicting the wheels of the car, which do not have the rims usually seen in rap videos i.e. gaudy and ostentatious.
20. Close up – number plate
21. Tracking long shot – shows the car leaving, protagonist hanging out of the window.
22. Mid shot – outside yet more expensive gates, playing on ‘prison idea’
23. Extreme long shot – Shows car in the distance.
24. Mid shot – shows Joe in toilet, reading broadsheet newspaper.
25. Close up – shows his pained expression.
26. Mid shot – Man enters toilet, clearly desperate for use.
27. Mid/Long shot – depicts man wrestling with Joe for use of the toilet.
28. Mid shot – showing two characters reading classic literature
29. Establishing shot – long shot showing ‘Waitrose’ logo, showing the boys ‘middle class’
30. Mid shot - shows Joe rapping amongst some fine wines
31. Long shot – Shows boys pushing Joe in Trolley.
32. Mid/Close up – Boys rapping in the shop.
33. Low angle close ups – Boys being obscene into the camera.
34. Slow motion mid shot – James in full singing flow.
35. Low angle close up – ‘I get on down’
36. Mid shot – James dancing awkwardly
37. Close up – Tropicana
38. Mid shot – Tasting wine
39. Shot reverse shot – Joe looking girl up and down.
40. Close up of Joe walking into pillar.
41. Extreme close up – Candy sticks, ironic.
42. Mid shot – Boys ‘smoking’ candy sticks
43. Mid close up – of financial times, which is dropped to reveal the boys rapping.
44. Long establishing shot – Shows boys arriving at suburban park
45. Mid shot – shows boys playing ‘boules’
46. Close up – shows ball landing near the Jacque
47. Extreme close up – Shows James’ adulation.
48. Mid shot – Joe rapping, then showing first aid kit and antiseptic.
49. Low angle shot – boys vying for position in the camera
50. Extreme long shot – Boys playing in park.
51. Low angle shot – boys on jungle gym
52. High angle shot – Joe rapping on climbing frame.
53. Close up – Joe determined expression in car
54. Close up – James determined expression in car
55. Long shot – shows the race, where Joe stalls.
56. Reverse angle mid shot – Boys playing in park
57. Extreme long shot – same shot as before, but James falls off swings.
58. Mid shot – Final shot, shows boys leaving waitrose arm in arm.

Thursday, 28 October 2010

Rap Conventions - A definitive list - Joe Jones

After compiling extensive research into the rap genre, and watching numerous videos from various rap and hip hop artists, we began to spot a pattern emerging amongst all the videos we watched. From this, we were able to identify a set of codes and conventions which appeared in the majority of the videos we watched:

- objectification of women: this is something we saw regularly in the rap and hip hop videos, which videos often depicting women in a very sexual and provocative way, often wearing very little if anything at all. This is shown clearly in 50 Cents video ' Candy Shop' which in short, is using innuendo to suggest the rapper is visiting a Brothel. The females in this video are shown to be incredibly sexual beings, shown in their facial expressions and general manner. In the screen shot below, we see this woman is dressed in a very provocative costume, also carrying a whip, again playing on this idea of sexual desire.

- Location: We found that is often varied between two extremes. Either the setting for the rap video was the Ghetto, which many rappers choose as this is an environment they grew up in, or it was quite the opposite, a grand mansion with a massive party stocked with champagne. In this first example, we see the Ghetto often depicted in rap videos. This shot is taken from Tupac's posthumous release 'Ghetto Gospel', about Tupac's experience in East Harlem in Manhattan.

Use of Vehicle - This is something that started out in the very early days of hip hop and has continued in its usage through to the modern day. In the first image, we see a shot from Ice Cube's 'It Was a Good Day'. He is seen driving a 'low rider', a popular vehicle at the time in the Ghetto's, and would often be kitted out with hydraulics and fancy paint jobs.

However in the modern day, it is usually a 'pimped out 4x4' that we see in rap videos. With tinted windows and a bass system. This seen in R Kelly's video 'Ignition' showing the party bus that is his 4x4...

However, we see that the 4x4 is often the vehicle of choice even in the Ghetto. Referring again to Tupac's Ghetto Gospel, the vehicle of choice for the gang when carrying out their killing mission is a 4x4, again with the tinted windows.

Guns and Violence - This is again another common convention in rap videos. Rap music started in the Ghetto's, and guns and violence were an integral part of Ghetto life. We see in the early rap and hip hop videos, the hint towards this lifestyle, and this carries through again to the modern day. In the song 'Straight Outta Compton' by influential group N.W.A, we see this shot of a gun, accompanied by the lyric 'with an AK47 as ma tool'. This alludes to the war of attrition between the police and the streets, and the graphic violence involved.

But we see that this theme has continued throughout the late 80's and 90's all the way through to the modern day. For example, in Eminem's video 'Toy Soldiers', which deals with the theme of gang violence again, we see the 4x4 used, and we see the gun shots fly through a man in slow motion, to emphasise this graphic violence.

Monday, 11 October 2010

Radiohead - No Surprises - Martin Woodhatch

No surprises by Radiohead was released in 1998. Although the song isn't that popular the video is far more popular due to the fact that it is filmed in on shot. The video is of the lead singers head being submerged in water.

Also the lyrics are being put up on the screen but they are being shown backwards. This therefore portrays as a script for the singer.

Also the lighting in the song changes throughout and starts off as being extremely dark and then changes and becomes bright were the singers face is fully visible.

The song is also cyclical meaning that although the lighting changes to bright it then reverts back to the beginning when there is pure darkness.

The music video is not a typical video as most generic music videos involve a variety of shots and are exciting to watch. In comparison this music video is just the one shot and although is not very exciting to watch it is intriguing for the viewer as you want to know what will happen to the singer. The music video doesn't have a narrative as the song is not really relevant to the video. Although the song is not that popular the video has proved popular nearly 2 million hits on youtube.

Monday, 4 October 2010

Conventions of the Music Video - Joe Jones

The video I have chosen to analyse is 'I'm on a Boat' by The Lonely Island. I felt this was appropriate as they are a rap spoof group, so the sort of videos they produce will be something similar to the idea we are trying to create. The video itself follows many of the conventions of a typical Music Video; including aspects of performance and narrative and also a 'hook'.
Firstly, I will focus on the performance elements. They lip sync to the music and combine narrative and performance, although the narrative itself isn't much of a narrative, its simply that they get a free boat ride. Also, they use conventions of the rap genre and parody them, this is seen in the high angle shot below, showing the two men rap into the camera, with lots of vigorous hand movements, a shot seen commonly in rap videos over the years.

Again, the idea of humour and comedy is something we are very interested to incorporate in our Video, with a view to spoofing the Rap genre. Below are shots again of this high angle shot where the Men rap aggressively into the camera lens, but they do this wearing sailor outfits, thus simply but effectively making fun of this kind of shot seen so often in Rap videos.

Also, a popular convention of a pop video is to have some sort of dance routine or arrangement. This is used in a way in the video, however they dance is intentionally disjointed and unorganised, in order to create comedy. The dance scenes show the awkward situation as the two men from The Lonely Island literally lose themselves in the song as T Pain stands there moving slowly and coolly. This contrast highlights the ridiuclous movement of the two men and helps to create humour.

'Burn, Burn' Video Analysis - Ned Keating

The video to 'Burn, Burn' by Lostprophets contains many conventions of music videos.
For example, there is a performance within the video.This is often seen in music videos from many genres to further promote the song. Furthermore, a performance includes lip syncing which could entice the audience to sing-a-long.

Also in the video, we see the band having to walk through a crowd. This is the representation of the band within the video. it shows the band as still being in touch with their fans as they follow a similar action taken by the fans, i.e. walking through a large crowd.

In the video as well, there is some form of dance routine performed by dancers rather than the band. Generally seen in pop videos, dance routines are not usually seen within rock videos. However, the reason why this routine may have been placed in the video may have been more for mocking the routines seen in pop videos rather than being a serious one.

The video also makes use of 'moshing'. This is something generally seen at rock concerts, so the use of it in the video would further enhance the video's appeal to its target audience.

Another convention seen in the video is the use of props that relate to the genre. In addition to a BMX (see screenshot), there is also a skateboard in the video. both of these are generally associated with the rock genre of music. Again, by using these, the band with further appeal to their target audience.

Shaggy "it wasn't me" - James Wilson

The video to "it wasn't me" by shaggy contains many conventions of a music video. For example narrative within the video. Having a narrative takes the audience on the journey with the artist and gives an understanding of the song.

Throughout the music video a variety of shots with a variety of locations were used which is a common convention. By doing this a the artist keeps the audience interested and engaged in the video.

In the music video, lip syncing is used which is a common convention, and the quality of the lip syncing is important is it needs to look as professional as possible.

In the rap genre there is glorification of women and in this music video it is no different. The video shows how the women go around after shaggy and being there for his every need, helping down the stairs to just sitting around him. This shows the power of shaggy and how it makes him look more powerful with lots of women around him.

The Verve - Bittersweet Symphony - Martin Woodhatch

Bittersweet Symphony by The Verve was released in 1997 and was instantly a hit with the consumers. This was due to the brilliance of the song and also the reputation of the video. The video is filmed as one man walking down the street and is perceived by the consumer as if he doesn't stop.

The music video is extremely well known within the music industry due to the fact that it is just a man walking down the street. The video is filmed on a busy street and there are many different obstacles in the band members way. These obstacles are ignored by the man as he just walks straight on without stopping.

Although the concept of the music video could be considered boring it works really well as the viewer is intrigued and enticed by what will happen next. The music videos pace is also relative to the speed of the song as both are slow paced with no quick cuts. The video also has a flow to it which means that it becomes engaging to the viewer and interesting to watch.

Lip Syncing - James Wilson

Lip syncing is a convention seen in many music videos. In our music video, we intend to lip sync the chorus of 'Fix Up, Look Sharp'. This is because we believe it to be the part of the song that is most recognisable. This way, when we are lip syncing the chorus, the audience may be enticed to sing-a-long with us. we also believe the chorus to be the part where we can further spoof the rap genre by rapping in a mocking style.