IRON & WINE
SUB POP RECORDS
March 21, 2004
Hello everybody! It’s Andy Gesner and the staff from HIP Video Promo checking in and we are very amped up to let you know that you have just received the first two videos for 2003 from our friends and fellow indie rock music lovers at Sub Pop Records. Last year’s highlight for HIP Video was being hired to promote new clips from Sub Pop favorites Mudhoney, The Catheters and Arlo. We start off the new year flying high with this very influential Seattle label’s newest rising star, Iron and Wine. The debut CD The Creek Drank the Cradle just happens to be Sub Pop’s 600th release in their fabled fifteen year history. It also includes some of the most arresting and seductive music you will hear all year. Though the songs are understated and stripped down to a gleaming white bone, the musical and lyrical aesthetic emanates an honesty and wisdom that creeps down deep into your emotional psyche and keeps you thoroughly engaged. This is music to chill out to, to become one with and to explore deeper. Iron and Wine is an artist unafraid to expunge his guts for public display.
“Southern Anthem” is a stunning, starkly beautiful video. Singer/Songwriter/Director Sam Beam also teaches classes in cinematography, and his art is elegantly displayed in the single uninterrupted shot that comprises the entire clip. The stately pace of the traveling camera is in sharp contrast to the rapid-fire, beat-driven edits that have become the expectation and norm in most music videos. It’s also the production antithesis of the tension throughout the first half of the vid.
Beam’s singing and musicianship have been variously compared to that of artists ranging from Nick Drake to Neil Young (or perhaps think Syd Barrett if Syd wasn’t so chemically damaged). It draws on the same traditions and conventions, of course; but is nonetheless strikingly original and clearly deeply personal. “Homegrown” is perhaps a fitting description – Beam played and recorded all the tracks himself, on his home equipment. Again, this is a marked departure from the norm in today’s music industry; and again a welcome one.
In both the song and the accompanying video, Beam displays both a solid grounding in and a heartfelt loyalty to the musical traditions of the Deep South; but this is complemented by a uniquely personal vision and powerful lyrical content. The result, like the conclusion of the video, is a loving and ultimately celebratory embrace.
Big thanks to Megan Jasper and Sub Pop Records for bringing HIP Video in to help get the word out about Iron and Wine. HIP Video Promo WILL be traveling to Austin, Texas the week of March 11th to see Iron and Wine perform at the Sub Pop Showcase at SXSW on Saturday March 15th. While we are there we will be filming video IDS with Sam Beam that will be coming to you the following week. Be looking for them! And to help get programmers excited, we are running the “Sub Pop Spring Fling” contest. Any programmer that adds the Iron and Wine video for the add dates of March 21st and 24th will be entered into a drawing to win a “twelve pack” of their favorite Sub Pop releases and a fine bottle of either red or white wine to sip while you listen to all your new Sub Pop CDs! The drawing takes place on April 30th. If you need more info call Andy Gesner at 732-613-1779 or e-mail [email protected].