Producing Comedy and Burritos - A Surprising Kinship

Producing Comedy and Burritos - A Surprising Kinship

 

Clatter&Din owner Peter Barnes authored the following guest post on Family Seattle, a blog run by local Marketing Wiz and all-around good guy Mike Johnston.  How are burritos and producing comedy similar?? Well, read on to see!


Producing comedy is a lot like making a burrito: a plethora of tangy challenges wrapped in a tortilla of high hopes. It requires a light touch and, at the same time, plenty of brutal honesty. Sound delicious? Well, there’s a little more to it.

And that’s because sound engineers are often caught between two or more clients who have very different opinions about what is actually funny. Having the “Is this funny?” conversation can be very stressful. Go ahead, try it: Tell me what’s funny... and you have five minutes before this baby has to be uploaded. 

Comedy is subjective. For example, I love inappropriate, Family-Guy-type humor. Often that won’t fly with a target audience. Agency writers and producers are simultaneously expected to be funny and keep it just this side of offensive. This is hard. This is stressful. This is not funny.

And then the Creative Director enters the burrito stand.

This is exactly what the sound engineer needs in the session: one more opinion about what’s funny. And look out if there’s a struggle brewing between the writer, who may be inexperienced (or fabulous) at writing comedy, and the Creative Director, who may be a crusty old shit full of ego and baggage (or not). Add to this grease fire the agency client, who likes to put their mark on everything and “always knows what’s best for their client.” And now you have all the ingredients for a cockfight in a shitstorm, just waiting to happen.

Dancing "High Above" with the Dance Theatre of Harlem

Dancing "High Above" with the Dance Theatre of Harlem

Earlier this month, our very own Marco Mendoza recorded singer India Arie for a track featured on a new short video for the Dance Theatre of Harlem's 2017 season. Daniel Schloss directed, with music by Tim Rosser and lyrics by Charlie Sohne.

The Dance Theatre of Harlem is in its fifth decade, and continues to provide opportunities for creative expression to over 500 students.

This was such a fun and important project to be a part of! We've had the pleasure of recording India Arie on several occasions, and we love her. 

 

 

 

 

Throwback Thursday: A Day with the Busiest Man on Earth

Throwback Thursday: A Day with the Busiest Man on Earth

This blog post was contributed by Vince Werner.

If you don’t already know who Richard Peterson is, let this be your introduction.  

For decades, Richard has held the title of Most Interesting Man in Seattle – a pianist and street musician with amazing skill, a fascinating history, and an undying (and mutual) love for broadcast personalities.  

Ten years ago Clatter’s Vince Werner followed him around and put together this ‘day in the life' documentary in honor of his 60th birthday.  Health issues have slowed Richard down a bit, but he still occasionally plays for coins outside local sports venues, and would like everyone to know that hi is available for piano gigs! (We can handle the booking - just call.)

At almost 70 years old, Richard Peterson shows no sign of slowing down...not if he can help it.

Baseball Season is Around the Corner!

Baseball Season is Around the Corner!

Few things are as consistent in Clatter’s world as commercials for the Mariners baseball team.

Much like taxes, these spots crop up each and every spring – although we actually look forward to working on the Mariners ads! As the leaves grow back on the trees and the citizens of Seattle start searching the skies for any sign of sun, these spring commercials help remind us all that summer (and baseball season) are fast approaching.

We’ve collaborated with local advertising agency Copacino+Fujikado and the Mariners for over two decades.  Last week King5 stopped by our studio to get a behind-the-scenes look at the close partnership and creativity that goes into these spots each and every year.

Check out the video and watch Sam Gray working his magic on the sound design! It’s an extensive, creative process that we were pleased to share with King5.

And to check out each commercial in all their finished glory, click here!

PNW Locals Know Taco Time Best

PNW Locals Know Taco Time Best

Taco Time has been a staple in the Pacific Northwest for decades.  We've been fortunate enough to work with them and Leonard Creative on their radio and TV spots for 15 of those glorious, mexi-fries-filled years.  We've always had a great time working with both the Leonard Creative and Taco Time teams.  They've been a staple of our culture here at Clatter&Din, and we always look forward to having them in our studio.

Their most recent spot, "Here's To The Locals", is dedicated to the Pacific Northwest and all its people who make Taco Time a regular spot to get their grub on.  This was a fun change of pace, with new music and a new video direction. Eric Johnson worked his magic and engineered the session, grabbing (as usual) excellent VO from the talent and mixing it with the music track and video.

Check it out! We hope you enjoy this Pacific Northwest tribute as much as we at Clatter love eating tacos.

Post Production and a Goat

Post Production and a Goat

There is an obvious goat in the room. No seriously, it’s not CG and it eats money. The folks at Weber Marketing Group developed a TV and online video campaign for their client First Entertainment Credit Union, and used a real live goat as a representation of “big banks” in one of the spots. The main actor Curtis Armstrong shares insights to the great benefits of being a member of FECU.

Weber Marketing Group worked directly with Clatter&Din on the post production for this series of spots. Clatter’s main task was to own all of the post production including video editorial, compositing, color grading, and sound design for the campaign. With the tight deadline of Weber’s and FECU’s marketing schedule, Clatter hit the ground running with Scott Manley at the helm for the video editorial and compositing. 

Once Clatter had the spots locked down and approved, Eric Johnson began his magic of sound design and audio sweeting. Since Clatter is a post production powerhouse, the sound design session and color grading were being done in tandem. Scott also took care of the color grading in DaVinci Resolve, so Weber could swiftly hit their deadline. 

Clatter’s unique full service post production capabilities made this a fun tag-team project between our audio and video departments. It’s really cool for us and extremely time efficient for our clients to get the our whole Clatter team involved on projects. 

Nitro Circus + CRACKER JACK'D + Clatter&Din = Awesomeness

Nitro Circus + CRACKER JACK'D + Clatter&Din = Awesomeness

Rally Marketing came to Clatter & Din for help with a viral video campaign that showcased the crazy antics of the boys at Nitro Circus. In the first video of the series, Streetbike Tommy needs help from two of his teammates to hold his skinny jeans while he comes barreling down a 30’ ramp on a boogie board in order to fit himself in the jeans. 

Clatter was tasked with shooting, editing, and creating a hard hitting motion graphics treatment for all three videos of the viral campaign. The production took place on site at Nitro Circus’ world tour stop in Fresno, California. Since the Nitro Circus team has a very limited window for production, Clatter’s crew was able to shoot all the videos for the campaign in 4 hours. In order to get the coverage to complete the edit, Clatter's crew knocked out multiple takes from a total of 5 cameras.

To get the fast-paced action feel that the client needed for the “Skinny Jeans” video, we utilized multiple GoPro cameras that were strapped to both Streekbike Tommy and the boogie board. This allowed us to get Tommy’s point of view, as he’s shredding down the ramp, right before wedging himself into the skinny jeans. 

Once we made it back to Seattle for the edit, we picked up a couple of road flares and various fireworks to film a portion of the motion graphic into treatment. We shot the fireworks in 4k on a black background (in a safe environment of course) to get the elements we needed to complete the compositing. 

After the video edit and motion graphics were locked, we had our very own Sam Gray use his post audio skills to make the graphics treatment and sounds effects come to life. Sam added his own style of sound design and foley to create an intense fire-shooting, motorcycle-rumbling concoction of sounds to bring everything to life.