Today, we premiered our new video for “I Walked Alone” on Interview Magazine’s website. The story of this video is, in a way, the story of YACHT itself.
Mitchell Davis, the director, is a longtime supporter of YACHT. He’s also a rare breed of human being: a bona-fide YouTube celebrity. He first became aware of him when he started using our music in his YouTube video-blogs (vlogs, in the parlance of the medium). We had no idea his kind even existed, and we became fascinated by what he was doing. What was this alternate media economy, where the author was in such total control? Who was Mitchell Davis?
We sought him out, and eventually became friends, despite our geographical separation. Mitchell made a handful of videos about his experiences at YACHT concerts over the years before we invited him out to Portland, Oregon, to direct the music video for “I Walked Alone,” our song about cyclical interconnectedness.
As children of the Internet age, we know that connection, self-empowered media-making, and a collective spirit are the most positive tools we have. In our eyes, this video is a feedback loop, a particularly modern object: the medium of YouTube empowered a brilliant kid from Ohio, brought him to the attention of the people he admires, annihilated the gap between them, and eventually facilitated his direct involvement in–even control of–the very work he loved to begin with. Now it’s his as much as ours. Like the circles the camera etches across the landscape, like the Ouroboros forever eating its own tail, we no longer know where YACHT ends and its perceivers begin. We live in the 21st century, and YACHT is a 21st-century community, a larger experience that evolves along with the people it calls to action.
We filmed “I Walked Alone” in the Painted Hills, a geological time machine in the desert outside of Mitchell, Oregon. Yes, Mitchell.
The shoot lasted two days, and we ran the production entirely ourselves, with the help of our immediate community of friends and collaborators. Much gratitude is due to Mike Merrill for organizing and conceptualizing, to Steve Schroeder for driving and generally being a huge support, to Ryann Bosetti for styling, and to the members of the white room for letting the cameras in: Alex Mahan, Julia Austin, Jeffrey “Jerusalem” Brodsky, Katy Davidson, Nicole Georges, Whitney Marston Pierce, Eric Mast, and Diana Kim.
We’d also like to thank the YACHT Members who volunteered to be in a scene that ended up on the digital cutting room floor: Ryan McLaughlin, Haley Taylor, Adrienne Hurst, Caedmonster, Karlie Domine, Hannah Fredericksen, Samantha Ogle, and Cory Grove. And Christian “Megazord” Oldham for being our movement consultant.
Here’s an awesome behind-the-scenes video by YACHT collaborator Mike Merrill; for the entire weekend of the shoot, Mike was in our face with cameras, and caught us celebrating Mitchell’s birthday, driving out to the desert, and arranging the white room.
Bonus gift: Mitchell took this photograph when we were out in the desert. It looks too much like a desktop wallpaper for us not to offer it to you as one, so here.
Claire & Jona