Live music videos are a great way of delivering high-class video content while portraying a definite sense of musicianship and love for the craft. If you work with the right team, the process can be playful and fun, with the same sense of energy that you get from any live performance.
More and more artists decide to shoot live videos prior to engaging in fully-produced, traditional music videos – and rightly so. Filming a great live performance can act as an incredible incentive, offering an entertaining piece of content and reason to go and experience the action firsthand at a live concert
To help you get the most out of your live video, I’m going to sum up some important pointers that can make your life easier when planning and shooting different kinds of live music videos.
So let’s go….
Live arrangement is key
Even though I am a total fan of easygoing, lighthearted creative concepts, I would have to stress the importance a great live arrangement has on the outcome of live music videos. Even if you play in a reduced setting, investing some serious time and brainpower in creating a surprising, fun and individual live arrangement is a must-do when planning a live video.
If you’re performing a track that’s already out in a produced version, it becomes even more important to change things up and present a fresh performance.
As in most cases – getting solid feedback is a fundamental cornerstone in creating something truly special and unique. So, before heading into a live video production, try to get some feedback from peers on things like styling, set-up, instrumentation. You’ll probably stumble upon some surprises and things you’d never come up with.
Looks ain’t everything
Part of finding a great location for shooting is finding a great location that also sounds good, or at least good enough. Its a good idea to involve the sound technician in the search for a solid room, ideally even connecting him or her with the visual-team.
This way a location can be picked with both sides in mind, offering solid working conditions for comfortable audio and video work.
Achieving compromise between really great visual aesthetics and realistic soundwork is always a process that has to be negotiated from scratch, but you’ll save yourself a lot of discussing if you involve the sound-engineer equally as deep in the process.
Do your visual homework
If you dig a certain style you saw in a different musical/visual production, do your homework and read up on how it was done. There are huge differences in how visual pros engage in various situations, and being able to articulate yourself on a basic level will make the communicative process a LOT easier. You will also gain respect and an open ear by the creatives at hand for being able to explain some basic things you want to achieve.
Nobody will expect you to be a pro about the visual side – that’s why you hired professionals. But like when working with skilled musicians or producers, getting to the point in a fast manner without beating around the bush is a characteristic most creative professionals search for and value in others.
Set up a mood-board and send it around with enough headroom to actually exchange some constructive thought. This means weeks or even months before shooting, not the-week-of, or night before. If you don’t have a clue how to create a mood-board, talk to the video crew and create one with them. It will really help you land on the same page.
Raw performance wins every time
It’s easy to get really stressed out by trying to capture the perfect live performance in one, error-free take. Sometimes even musicians with exceptionally great live-confidence will become entirely cramped when performing in front of cameras, loosing their sense of performance and angst-free musicianship.
If you’re the type of musician that is still developing a feeling for cameras and video crews, embrace the rawness of your potential performance. Try not to think of mistakes and mishaps as terrible incidents undermining your musical ability. On the contrary – one of your main goals should be delivering a completely natural, authentic live show. With mistakes and all.
One of the most important factors – maybe even THE most important factor – in creating stunning live videos and sessions, is the art of letting go and obtaining a mindset of “not giving a damn”. It really does not matter which genre you are working in – be it smooth soul, jazz, or fragile acoustic songwriting. A definitive sense of rock’n’roll attitude will help you relax during the session, playing the way you would in front of a live audience and just for the moment.
This ability to just let things go, without worry about current or future factors, will also help you maintain a stern stoicism during interviews and other media situations.
If you’re interested in other areas of music and creative content, feel free to visit our ForTunes Blog. Leave some feedback or a comment, you can also drop a live video if you have one stashed – we’d be more than happy to talk about it!0 be the first one to show some appreciation for this!