Joe Wilson Bulldog Media Interview with Caliroots:
Q: When setting out to creating a Cali Roots Video, what is your goal?
A: My goal is create a song and video that captures the true artist and fan experience at the festival. We are so fortunate to be able to be a part of this amazing movement and I want our fans around the world to feel or relive a little bit of what we feel every Memorial Day weekend.
Q: The Cali Roots Songs are created onsite during the Festival, correct?
A: That’s correct. We film the song live onsite at Bulldog Media camp with a group of family and friends. From there, we take the audio recording and film in different places across the fairgrounds to capture some of the beautiful vibe that goes on throughout. A huge shout out to my crew for their amazing work at camp and around the fairgrounds. This is a break from their normal duties, but I know they love it as much as I do.
Q: That must come with its challenges. How far in advance do you begin planning for the Cali Roots Song?
A: Usually 2-3 months out. Within a month of the festival, I like to ensure we have our artist locked in and that they have begun writing some of what will become our Cali Roots song for that year. A lot of it is finalized onsite once the group of artist get together and our able perform the song live for the first time.
Q: The video turned out incredible this year! Every year, you seem to perfectly capture the essence and experience of the festival. Will you describe the creative process from conceptualization to the final product?
A: The conceptualization comes when I pick the band to sing the song. Last year, I had a pretty good sense of what I wanted the theme to be by bringing on Thrive to perform an updated version of their song “California Roots”. The song title obviously works well with the festival, so it was a pretty easy choice. I wanted the vibe to fill nostalgic and current at the same time. Thrive & Eli-Mac hit the nail on the head with their performance. This year will be a little different, as I will depend on the artist more to match the vibe of Cali Roots. Once the band is picked, then we will get to work on set design. This past year I brought on my good friend Ann Matassarin to lead set design. She did an outstanding job and exceeded all my expectations. Our goal was to create a campsite feel that you would see at Laguna Seca Campgrounds. It was very colorful with tapestries and cool decorations throughout the set. This year we are going to try to recreate a campground scene you might have saw at Monterey Pop in 1967.
Q: Who have been your biggest influences?
A: As a director, I would have to say Francis Ford Coppola. His ability to create period pieces is unmatched. I really love how he can take you back to a different place in time with ease. Today there are so many artist out there creating beautiful highlight videos from the amazing festivals around the world. I love to find inspiration in those videos. I can spend hours tuned into MTV Live, Fuse, VH1, etc watching videos from Coachella, Bonnaroo, Glastonbury, etc. YouTube is an amazing source for inspiration as well. I hope some artist can find a little inspiration in our work.
Q: What do you love about directing the Cali Roots Song Music Video?
A: I love that it’s my opportunity at Cali Roots to create something that is truly my vision. So much of the other stuff we capture is dependent on the live music or vibes going on through the fairgrounds. At camp, I can truly bring my vision to life with the help on my amazing crew and the support of our family and friends.
Q: Who is your dream artist you would like to collaborate with for a Cali Roots Song?
A: For this year, I would love to see Nahko Bear and Beebs collaborate on the Cali Roots Song 2017.
Q: Every year you seem to out do yourself with another incredible video. How do you plan to do it again this year?
A: I want the theme to stay pretty much the same. Something fun and catchy that captures the vibe of the festival. To out do ourselves, we will step up our game in terms of set design and audio recording. My ultimate vision for this song is to sell the track where 100% of the proceeds go to a non-profit charity of our choosing. It truly is our Cali Roots theme song each year and I feel it has huge potential to make a difference around the world.