Tight budgets and big ambitions
Live music sessions are definitely one of the more challenging and rewarding types of shoots a production company can get to work on. Very often these types of productions have extremely tight budgets but great creative ambitions at the same time. Over the years, we’ve been lucky to work on several live music videos, and the biggest lesson we’ve learned is that it’s all about giving space to the music!
I first became good friends with Laoise back in my time in the gaeltacht. Laoise has always had a unique sound and a strong personal style both when it comes to her music, but also to the content she makes. 2017 was the first time we got to work together on a project, when I directed a live music video of her song “You”. This was live music video filmed in a single take, no editing. Something I learned on that project, and was very grateful to our DP Aidan Maguire, was making sure to light the video in a way that gives space to the artist to perform and requires very little change from take to take. Artists need time to warm up and find a rhythm especially in unique settings, and the last thing they need is big changes or long changeovers between takes.
Fast forward to 2019 and I have now directed our third Live Session with LAOISE. This was the biggest setup we at Moose produced for LAOISE to date, taking over a school gym for the day and filming 4 tracks from her latest EP. Although this was our biggest project with LAOISE, which even afforded us a location scout in advance and a much larger lighting rig, the core principle remained the same. We approached the shoot in a way that gave the most space to LAOISE and her band to perform as they would on stage and not be hindered by the production.
Over the years we worked on Other Voices producing content for their various festivals, Moose developed a content strategy that produced highlight videos that spoke to particular themes using the voice of an artist performing at their events. In 2017 and 2018 we took this one step further and recorded bespoke performances from the artists in question for the content. These needed to be produced in a matter of hours, finding a location, a sound operator and any backline requirements but most importantly ensuring the already very busy musicians had an enjoyable experience, without any stress.
It’s whats on screen that matters
Very often when working on a project you can become so absorbed by your own part in the production process, you forget that the most important part is what’s happening on the screen. This is something that working on music projects has taught me to remember whenever we start a new project.