Friday, 25 March 2011

Evaluation Question 4

How did you use new media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?

We were able to use a much more advanced array of technologies in constructing our Media coursework this year which enhance our footage taken and especially the editing process both for the video and advert and the digipak.

We used the apple editing programme Final Cut which really provided us with a far superior standard of editing software than on just Imovie, and this made the final product look professional and neater, as this programme is used in Hollywood for some very big blockbusters movies, notably 'Brokeback Mountain' directed by Ang Lee. The software allows for more indepth and intense editing of footage shot by shot as well as sophisticated transitions as well as overlaying footage and changing gradients and the colour of footage. It is a far more complex piece of software than Imovie and so took a while for us to gain a grasp of how to use it though once able to we really got to work with it! We initially used Imovie as we were more comfortable with it original then latterly moved the project into Final Cut.
Finally we used IDVD to burn our music video onto a disk, we were happy to use this programme as we used it when burning our A2 coursework onto DVD, we were able to create a nice DVD menu with the Australian flag appearing in the windscreen and made it look like it was the windscreen of a car driving past a country lane, travelling - hitchhiking concept!

The biggest advancement of technology used for our coursework in my view was using the HD cameras- the footage taken with these was an unbelievable difference from the basic video camera's we used in our AS coursework. The shots had a wider image due to the wider frame of the lense and so we could take fantastic long shots. Also there was no need for video casette tapes as all the footage was digitally stored on an SD in the camera, this saved money and time when both filming/setting up and uploading the footage to the MAC's as it also uploaded the footage in 'real time'. The batteries on the HD cameras also seemed to last a while longer than those of the basic cameras and charging these was just as easy to do, not that we really needed to as it did not really run down as quickly!
Initially we did not use a tripod, though we learnt from this mistake as the footage taken when using the tripod looked suuperb and we were very happy that we were able to re-take all the 'shaky footage' as we would have lost a great deal of marks for this as it looked amateur and made us look incompetant behind the lense.
The internet was a fantastic source of information in the researching stage of our coursework and also in getting some publicity and our music video viewed by a much wider audience through sites and networks such as Youtube and Facebook, and also gaining feedback on video throughout all the stages of making it, including the initial idea, changes to that, location scouting, rough cuts of the video and audience feedback.
We were able to embed these onto our blog's very easily for all to see, concisely and neatly.
Websites were helpful in not only researching our band but a wide array of music video's and genre, including -
 As this us great insight to all 1980's music and bands as well as providing links to other good sites that were more of a narrow focus. It also included Archive footage and any recent news, such as rebranding which was useful to us in our coursework project and upcoming gig's and concerts.

Evaluation Question 3

What have you learnt from your audience feedback?s

Overall the feedback we received was through Voxpop, where we asked a wide range of questions about genre and what our primary target audiences understanding of 80's music, to try and discover if it would be possible to rebrand' Men At Work' to appeal to a youth asdience. The Voxpop and Facebook response extremely beneficial it helped us to discover there was scope to sell to a 'youth' audience for a initial song preformed and released in the 80's.

The response from Facebook, showed a general group of 17- 18 and 30+ had a positive response the video, enjoying the comical spin, and does give us general criticises about casting and details to change.

Overall the feedback we received through Voxpop, where we asked a wide range of questions about genre and what our primary target audiences understanding of 80's music, to try and discover if it would be possible to rebrand' Men At Work' to appeal to a youth audience. The Voxpop and Facebook response extremely beneficial it helped us to discover there was scope to sell to a 'youth' audience for a initial song preformed and released in the 80's.

The response from Facebook, showed a general group of 17- 18 and 30+ had a positive response the video, enjoying the comical spin, and does give us general criticises about casting and details to change.

We found through our target audience video. That teenagers aged between 16 - 18 reacted to the positively, they could recognize the song from recent media coverage, showed in a earlier post e.g a recent scrubs episode. This overall means the song was able to be re-branded to appeal to a youth audience, but it needed it to be comical.
Initially however we found hard to distinguish if people found the video comical because of the narrative and style of the product or whether it was because a lot of the audience knew members of the cast and were laughing along.
Luckily though this was resolved as I managed to show the video to lot's of people who didn't know any cast members including myself and gained feedback that it was purely the expression, energy and overall style of the music video that was enjoyable and funny, and especially 'quirky'.

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Evaluation Question 2

How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts?

Our ancillary texts and main product I believe compliment each other quite nicely, as both have the underlying theme of the Australian traveller, we purposefully put the koala bear on the mag ad as we felt this was the one thing if any that people would take away from our video as it was like a leit-motif or mascot/recurring theme. As well as using the road sign again a great signifier used in both texts.

As we were also re-branding the song we had to take into account the connection between original 'Men at Work' videos and their adverts and posters as well as single/album covers.
We tried to use nice bright colours in the advert as there is plenty used in the video and most of the footage was taken on sunny days so the shot for the advert was taken of the moors on a bright day to enhance the grass and landscape, with a road sign with bright yellow colour and almost a nice cartoon style to it.

Also both the advert and the video are taken in similar locations as it is meant to be a juxtaposition and so the locations are surburban yorkshire again signifying the backpacker style to the whole concept.

Evaluation Question 1

In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?

The three types of music video are Performance, Narrative and Concept.

5 Codes and Conventions;

  •  Editing
  • Continuity
  • Cut-to-the-beat
  • Mise-en-scene
  • Diegetic intro's/endings

Our Mag Ad is similar to a teaser advertisement almost, as it is purely the name of the band and song and says coming soon - no dates, so it works well alone, with a quirky style of poster which is in keeping with the rest of the products.
It captures you as you look at it, something with good use of colours and interesting to look at, as well as keeping within the genre. So nice big 'funky' text and almost a cartoon style to it, whilst not giving too much away.

In our music video we tried to keep the main conventions of 1980's music video's not just within the 'New Wave' genre but also pop and even reggae to an extent as these influence the  'New Wave' genre.
Due to the style of our editing as kept it fast paced as well as the use of rewinds and cut to the beat in our opening scene, as well as the use of tints and effects to add to an almost nostalgic/psychedelic feel especially when we did the almost instrumental interludes, here we also tried to add an unusual quirky feel to it as we were incorporating performance aspects to the video even though the instruments seen were not the ones creating the sounds as we had a didgeridoo being played as flute music played.

Also the narrative/performance concept of the lead singer breaking the fourth wall and creates speculation over whether it is narrative or concept as he sings to the camera whilst the story plays on, like a narrator style to the video, like seen in many 'Pet Shop Boys' videos. Though the main influence of the video is of course the music videos of 'Men at Work' not so much the original 'Down Under' music video as we wanted to make our video unique and with a fresh mind but we looked at many other songs like 'Be Good Jonny' and 'Who Can it Be' as these all combined the three forms of music video with narrative and performance strongly overlapping whilst also concept thrown in though arguably this could be narrative too and metaphorical/alternative interpretations of the lyricsso there is negotiated reading within the original videos and as well as ours.

Aspects of our video also made it feel a home video in parts due to the shakey camera work as well as the sepia tone we added on at certain parts which helped signify the idea of a journey of an Australian back packer, some of the influence of this came from the 'Sweet Child O' Mine' video by 'Guns N' Roses'.
Our mise-en-scene was full of a variety of locations, props and costume, which were large signifiers to our production as we included stereotypes and cultural symbols of Australian people and ways of life - road signs, koala bears, etc.
The koala used in our video almost worked as a motif as it was a constant feature within the production as it followed the story and characters throughout, in many ways this was like our mascot and influence by the Compare the Meerkat advert as that gain so much success and is incredibly memorable to it's audience and is found amusing by a wide age group.

Our video both began and ended with the song we did not add in a digetic intro/ending like that in 'Welcome to the Jungle' or 'You Were Always on My Mind' as we like the way that the action began with the drum beat and the beginning of the song and slowly faded out towards the end, so it began fun and fast paced excitement and became calmer towards the end and had a nice slow ending of our Koala motif wandering out of frame though we did use it to break the fourth wall by having the bear looking into the camera lense.

Saturday, 19 March 2011

Final Ancillary: Digipak

Ancillary Draft: Mag Ad

There are many forms of advertising bands most commonly with magazine ads in magazines such as; NME, MOJO, Rolling Stones, Q, Kerrang and Billboard. Each focusing on one or more genre.

George and myself want to use a magazine advertisement.

How do bands promote themselves?

More often or not the band will have a myspace page, where fans can leave comments to receive feedback.

Magazine Adverts

Madonna - Celebration.
The advert for this is done in a pop art style, and clearly influenced by Andy Warhol's Marilyn prints. Using a nice vibrant use of colours that would appeal to a wide audience as it is an attractive print and it is not offensive or too suggestive. It also links back to her 1985 music video of 'Material Girl' where she portrayed Marilyn Monroe in her 'Diamonds are a girl's best friend' style so there is a strong link between those two. The print was designed by Mr. Brainwash, 2009.

Gorillaz - Escape to Plastic Island Tour
This advert for Gorillaz has been done in a cartoon/comic style whilst incorporating photographs of band members in it almost to look like they are cardboard cut outs. This seems that it will appeal it's target audience of young adults/teenagers therefore a youth audience and possibly there is even scope for the "tweenager" age group as well. The almost gothic comic book style comes across with the use of colours the blood red of the band name with the dark blues and and blacks in the background, almost like a DC Batman comic.

All  three of these magazines advertisements do all have similarities, despite them being from all different genres and magazines.
The majority of adverts have one main large photograph of the band or artist,

  • A large variety of fonts and sizes to attract the readers attention.  
  • Bright colors
  • Album name 
  • Magazine ratings
  • Where the album is available for purchase 
  • The artist or some form of representation of the band or singer.
  • Often has the same theme as the album and digipak. 

In our magazine advert we wanted to capture the two main features of our music video, the strong Australian stereotype and icons of road signs, didgeridoo's, etc. contrasted with England, especially the North of England and the suburban setting of Ilkley. 

We have the kangaroo road sign turned upside down as a quirky signifier of it being "Down Under", these are our two initial drafts of the mag ad's. The one with the grenadier guard is meant to be a juxtaposition as we have the very British setting of the guard in full attire and that is a strong stereotype and figure of London and the UK so the contrast of the chilled out Australian stereotype through the road sign works nicely. Though I feel the road sign needs to be bigger or instead of having the road sign it could have been quite quirky to have the koala bear climbing about on the street light or perhaps just above the grenadier's head.

The second draft idea we had was of making the road sign, a motif throughout our music video, the central focus of the poster, with the scenic landscape behind the sun shining down. Though this seemed a little too simple for an idea and the text was rather basic, so decided to play around a bit more with the idea and thought about incorporating the koala bear into this ad with it climbing along the rock behind or clutching onto the road sign, as the koala is almost like the central protagonist in many ways following the singers about as they wander.    

Ancillary Draft: Digipak

Friday, 18 March 2011

Call Sheet

Call Sheet 1

Call Sheet 2

Call Sheet 3

Call Sheet 4

Call Sheet 5

Call Sheet 6

Call Sheet 7

Redraft Storyboard



Thursday, 17 March 2011

New Wave Genre

New Wave was to be the 1980's less threatening alternative to the Punk Rock of the 1970's, such as The Sex Pistols.  Most New Wave music of the 1980's has stayed popular and well known up to present day, so its unique style and influence is still significant, most notably bands like The Police being one of the first white reggae bands are still incredibly popular today as they set a trend in music style and this specific genre.
It was a less roughed edged and less political form of music but lighter and less abrasive influenced by the light hearted feel of 1960's music and 1950's fashion.
Other strongly significant New Wave Bands of the 1980's are The Cars, Culture Club, Cyndi Lauper and The Human League. 

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Audience Feedback

I recieved a lot of comments about the video when I posted it on my facebook page including a comment that read
OMG, George!!!!!! That is just FANTASTIC! I would definitely give it an A*! Might have known you would choose that song! The whole storyline is brilliant, and I love the Beatles/Monkies-esque feel to it (that's meant to be a compliment, you realise!) Never realised the dangers to Olicanians of all those furry animals around the place. Rob is a star in the making (although not too sure about the exposure shot near the end of the video - he's incorrigible!) Well done, George. (If you ever need any "oldies" for your videos, I would gladly volunteer!!) x"
As well as a variety of other ones, it has certainly appealed to a wide audience as people from 16-50 have throughly enjoyed watching it and said whilst it is funny and uplifting (and quirky) it is slickly produced and has it's own style whilst the inspiration from past bands like quoted above the monkee's/beatles is there, and the feel of an original 1980's men at work video, whilst also having a feel of the 1980's in it, similar to the Pet Shop Boy's video's - e.g. You Were Always on my Mind.

Rough cut 2#

Initial storyboard



Rough Cut 1#

Monday, 14 February 2011

Final Pitch Vodcast

Rough Footage

Uploaded with

Here we were trying to catch the quirk and fun, fast pace of the song in our video, and using a variety of shots and angles that help capture this. We tried to play around with obscure angles and shots to see how effective they were on screen, many worked with match-on-action as well to keep a nice solid flow throughout as well as giving ellipsis with chopped up footage.

Location Scouting

We went around the town centre of Ilkley with a still camera to capture images of desirable location to shoot our music video. As it is about travelling we therefore wanted a variety of locations hence why we have images of the town centre, the railway station, pubs, restaurants and gardens.

We also will be filming in the countryside as well as the inner cities, I will be taking my video camera to New York with me to capture some footage to bring back to add into our music video too, to signify it showing a whole world journey.
* Due to problems with my video footage in New York it is too poor quality to use in our music video, however I have a great variety of still shots of land marks and icons from the city which I think we can successfully overlay onto our current footage which could work well and significantly give the impression of a journey in our music video.

The above footage was taken at the 'Monkey Wrack' at the top of Brook Street in Ilkley. I thought it was an ideal place to take footage for the video in. It is incredibly atmospheric despite not being a particulary large area, and through angles and framing the size was not apparent, we could make it seem as large or small as we saw fit. It had an almost rainforest/jungle feel to it, which was perfect as we could almost make it feel like the 'Australian Bush' as it was complete with high green tree's and bushes, as well as a flowing stream and fantastic branches which had beautiful shapes and this strongly helped the mise-en-scene. Also the bridges would be perfect to take footage of our characters interacting/performing on, just to give it an edge and make use of such easily accessible location.
As I wanted to display Roadsigns in the film and have the Koala bear poking out in certain locations this was definitely a great place to use, as I could have road signs balancing on tree branches or even stuck to tree's/benches and could have the Koala poking out from behind trees or out bushes or crawling along branches to add to the feel of the music video. It felt like it was truely the right mise-en-scene for the film, going nicely with our cast set and prop's.

Also I chose to film on Ilkley Moor, which is not only iconic and a tourist attraction, linking with the idea of Australian traveller, etc., but also it was a beautiful big open space and providing the weather was sunny and bright would really create a great impression on film. I want to have some of the band members running around all over the moor like it's the outback and they are isolated, especially on the line "you better run, you better take cover". A beautiful and iconic landscape, and whilst recognisable to locals, it could almost be anywhere in the world.

We also chose to use Fat Face in Ilkley as I wanted interaction between the cast and people around town, also Fat Face is quite a bohemian/surfer style shop which is perfect for the type of video we were doing. As well as it having a canoe on the wall and the dressing room door was in the shape and style of a Volkswagen 'Kombie' which was perfect to go with the opening line of the song.

Also the Loafer bakery in Ilkley was used as the sandwich shop in the video, again for interaction and would also be a quirky link to the line in the song. The counter displaying the sandwiches was perfect and the boards behind with 'specials' and pork pies, etc. I thought it was the perfect setting and the owner was more than happy for us to use it!

We eventually decided on the following locations to film our Music Video;

Fat Face, Ilkley
Ilkley Grammar School Front Lawn
Monkey Wrack, Ilkley
Ilkley Car Park
Ilkley Moor
The Loafer Bakery
Ilkley Paddling Pool

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Target Audience (GS/EM)

Today we did a voxpop and spoke with a group of teenagers about 80's music. It was interesting when asking them whether they listened to music from the 80's and most said no or that they were unsure, this was interesting because as soon as we named an array of bands from the 1980's they all recognised them and said that they listened to them, so perhaps many people do listen to 1980's music today but they are not sure of the age it was made.

Men At Work were at there at the peek of success during the 80's. So it may be hard to appeal to a younger audience. I myself had never heard of the song until George's initial pitch, therefore the song would needed to be re-branded.

Making our primary target audience being 20-40 year olds, who are most likely to be aware of the song.

If we were going to attempt to attract a younger 'youth audience' not tweens as this is a new age category associated with 'Pop music' not Folk, so we aren't going to try to appeal to this audience. One way we could do this is especially with the video, we want to use a old song and try a incorporate new ideas. To make the video appear modern thus appealing to a 'youth audience' as well as 20 to 30 year olds.

To illustrate what our target audience knows about the track itself and the 80's, we are going to do a vodcast to demonstrate this.

We are going to ask a few people in our target audience age rage 6 questions.

Do you have any 80's music on your ipod or downloaded recently?

Can you name three bands from the 80's?

Have you heard of the track before?

Can you name the band?

Do you think it would appeal to a youth audience?

Would you choose to listen or download this track?

From these questions we want to understand what our target audience knows about the 80's music.

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Final Cut/HD Camera

Elizabeth and I took some sample footage of both of us walking down a corridor from a variety of angles, edited it to make it look as though we were merging into the same person, we edited it using Imovie on the apple macs and then put it into Final Cut. We decided to play around and learn more about it as we had not previously used the software. We were able to overlay the footage and add transitions and effects onto the footage which was far more advanced than Imovie, which is still incredibly useful software.
When we changed the speed of footage it kept the smooth motion rather than it being choppy no matter how fast or slow the speed was changed to, we could also enhance the footage with colouring and the sharpness and contrast.
This was also due to the use of the High Definition Cameras that used, the difference between this and the ordinary video camera was phenominal. It made the reflections and surfaces of objects more like what the eye would see and the picture quality was far superior in many wyas enhancing even what the human eye would see. It was much easier to upload the footage too, as the HD camera did not require video tape and so the footage was stored on a memory card which we simply placed into the Mac to transfer, this also meant there was no chance of recording over any footage already taken which is a stress relief as it is a careless mistake which could happen quite easily.

A fantastic thing about programme's such as Final Cut is that many production companies, including Hollywood companies, use the programme for making movies. A famous one includes the 2005 film Brokeback Mountain directed by Ang Lee, or 300 made in 2006 and directed by Zack Synder.

Sunday, 6 February 2011


For our main band members I wanted the actors to be young, late teen years surrounded by the background of elder characters to add a form of binary opposition and even a juxtaposition maybe making these band members anchoring the stereotype of youth being revolutionary compared to more mature conservative characters. The band members will be caucasian, signifying they are European Australians as opposed to Aboriginal Australians.

The lead singer will be the most eccentric character. Flamboyant dress and will sing and not play any instruments. I was advised to play this part as I do a lot of dramatics and musical theatre in my spare time as well as act in many fellow students coursework.
For the rest of the musicians and band members I decided to use people who I know from other bands and those with a striking image, both in appearence - hairstyle and features, but also dress sense.
There would be five band members, the others being the drummer, lead guitarist, percussion (e.g. flute player/keyboard) and a bass player.

I was thinking the guitarist would be played by a friend of mine who plays lead guitar in his own band, 18 years old and has an individual appearence and clothing style. I want each band member to have their own look whilst also being collectively a group with a style or common theme between them.

Lead singer - George Scaife
Lead Guitarist - Joseph Iliff
Drummer -
Percussionist -
Bass Guitar -

We faced difficulties with our casting towards the end as many people were unable to make filming at the last minute, though we managed to recover from this minor glitch. Rather than just having a band of 5 we decided to have a central protagonist and lots of characters revolving around him, and interacting with a variety of people as he is travelling. We used several people of the same age, as well as some more mature actors. We went into the bakers and used the baker there as one of the characters that our protagonist meets, who gives him "a vegemite sandwich" as the lyrics say in the song. As well as another character going into a shop to try on a jumper and interacting with the staff behind the counter, and then disturbing a couple on a bench whom chase him and punch him.

Hamish Yewdall - band member
Harry Knight - band member
Tom Wardman - band member
Mark Allan - man on bench
Laura Birtwistle - woman on bench
Robert Micklethwaite - Band member
George Scaife - lead singer
Joel Colborne - Boomerang man
Johnny Hughes - Didgeridoo player
Graeme Smith - Baker

In the end our cast was made up of a variety of people, I included more footage of myself as the lead singer lip syncing as I felt it was not clear I was the lead in the first and second rough cuts as I was barely on screen. I therefore ensured there was much more footage of me in different costume and locations to again signify the idea of a journey.

As the second singer/backing vocals I chose Robert as he is an eccentric and flamboyant person who was perfect for the type of music video I was doing and he kept within the style of the song perfectly, as well as doing some of his own choreography in certain parts.

Johnny Hughes and Joel Colborne were also perfect as characters in the video, whilst they did not sing/lip sync they were used as a sort of comedy duo in the video and it was there spontaneity as actors that attracted me to them, a lot of what was eventually filmed was on the spot and I decided to just film some messing around which actually afterwards looked so good it become part of the final project which was fantastic!

Mark Allan and Laura Birtwistle were also used for comedy effect and a binary opposition, as Mark is a more mature adult male and her being a young teenage girl this worked nicely. I wanted interaction between all my characters of all ages, and again whilst I planned and story boarded most of the sequence they are in some parts came from their presence when acting which I really wanted to portray on screen.

Graham Smith was an ideal choice for the video too as we wanted a baker behind a counter looking jolly and again showing some interaction, there was also a bit of sarcasm in the song as the line is "he was 6ft 4 and full of muscles" and to go with the quirky feel of the video we wanted someone who was the opposite of that, a smaller, bald chap rather than a tall, muscular, blonde haired hero.

Men at Work videos (EM)

Men At Work- Who Can It Be Now

The open 0.06 seconds represents the motif we want to create with the flute in the chorus of A Land Down Under. Similar to the rest of the videos the band member are all separate but conjoin later in versus.
Reference to the song lyrics and alcohol represented similar to Down Under. We can to represent them drinking in the back of the hippy van. To signify them enjoying them self's as the song is upbeat and energetic.
A lot of engaging with the camera and the audience, this seems to be a common feature in their videos.
The costumes and mise en scene is basic and minimal.
Unlike the other video's this includes some performance footage.

Men At Work - Overkill

This video appears to be in a more urban area and has more similarities with modern rock/pop music videos.
Colin Hay seems to be the most dominant singer within the band, we had adapted this a want to include George as the main, dominant singer.
Again engaging with the camera and the audience. But this video seems to include more editing techniques and new wave editing. Altering the colors, fading into close up's.

Men At Work- It's A Mistake - Concept video

This video again reinforces the bands individualistic style, the video is energetic and uses animation, that at the time would of been relatively new and hi-tech.
Including the all band members in different situations that join together, similar to our idea with all band members on a journey coming together at the end.
As well as creating unusual situations as we want to do in out production, for example the old women hitting the man in the forest their video compared to ours in a modern day situation of a zombie walking down the street eating a veggie-mite sandwich.


Overall all the videos seen involve both a concept idea and performance, George and myself want to include both concept and performance. As well as having one main band member being predominately shown and singing. Present in most shots.

Thursday, 27 January 2011

Links with TV/Film - cultural influences

A main cultural form that has influenced us and that we would like to incorporate in our film is the idea of aboriginal art, the colours and patterns. We would like to involve the colours in clothing and settings, backdrops maybe or adding in colours and design later or overlapping the footage.
Whilst not strictly within the genre of New Wave, we liked the influence of The Sex Pistols on many New Wave bands, this documentary gave us a good insight into how the band was formed, costumes, props, gig's, etc.

The Sex Pistols - Full Documentary

In our music video we decided to use symbolic Australian icons, like the didgeridoo and the boomerang, both with aboriginal patterns on them, this works also well as a form of anchorage. Also we thought of using Australian road signs saying "Kangaroo's next 25km" or "Danger Crocodiles, No Swimming!" as it will almost create a juxtaposition for the characters in our music video.

Existing Videos for Ideas/Influence

Whilst our music video is a 1980's quirky pop song, I wanted to put a lot of the influence into the New Wave genre and the bohemian feel of the music. The band "Rogue Traders" gave me a lot of influence into the type of music video I wanted to create and the styles and colours I wanted to use, especially their song Voodoo Child. I like the use of colours and animation, it almost has a punk influence to it as well, which I think gives it a unique image.
I want to really emphasise the New Wave genre in the music video, so as well as looking at the video's of Men at Work, I am looking at Joy Division and some more contemporary music videos like The Killers and Franz Ferdinand. I am also looking at inspiration from Glam Rock which helped inspire New Wave, like David Bowie.

Voodoo Child - Rogue Traders (2005)
The Video starts with the name of the song and band on a book, like a "Once upon a time..." style, it opens and zooms into a blank page with an animated pair of red lips on it, it starts to sing then the outline and shadow of the eyes and nose appear. There is a fast pace to the video, and good animation used. We actually see an animated version of the lead singer, though it is not two dimensional. The colours used are quite faint and dark, like the background and figures of the singer, but this contrasts with the bright colours used for the trees and objects in the video. There is good use of shadow used in the video, connoting that it is a darker theme and not a jolly childhood type of animation, with contrasting bright colours to go with the fun fast pace of the song and it gives it a punk style. As the song and video was said to be influenced by the Punk Revolution, especially The Sex Pistols and so there are links, like drawings of the skull with the top hat on, snakes, gravestones and bats. Also good use with the colours filtering through the sketches.

A Dustland Fairytale - The Killers (2009)

The Killers - A Dustland Fairytale

Found this low budget independent re-make/alternative music video of the song "Down Under", thought it was good inspiration and we can compare our music video to it nicely too.

The Band as a Brand/Rebranding

Men At Work, but more so the song "Down Under" is still recognised today and by people of all ages. 
A softer instrumental version of the song appeared in the 2008 advert for Qantas Airlines, it also appeared in the 2003  family comedy "Kangaroo Jack" directed by David McNally, as well as the 2001 Comedy "Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles" directed by Simon Wincer. Also for the movie trailer for 2003 Pixar animation film "Finding Nemo" directed by Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich, the song was played and yet it did not appear in the cinema or DVD release of the film, so perhaps it was used purposefully to attract the audience to the film.

have recently being featured in various adverts qantas airlines for example, TV programs and copyright lawsuit.
Down Under had allegedly showed a strong influence from ' Kookaburra' a well known children's rhyme. It has had various appearances in films, such as Kangaroo jack soundtrack. Down under was used on Finding Nemo's advertisements as well showing the song does have potential to appeal to a younger audience. TV appearances such as 'Scrubs 'My Hard Labor' and ' My Porcelain God'.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Podcast - 2 - Ideas for A2 Coursework

Podcast - 1 - Initial Pitches for A2 Coursework


Green screen or try to create the effect, for the opening.

Introduction sequence maybe starting a toy car engine similar to a jeep and ending in a empty car park, walking away to signify the end of the journey.

Main singer driving down a rural, overgrown road. But staying still just a moving background to signify or make the allusion of the band on a journey picking up people on his journey from a rural environment to a large city center, obviously in a well built area, maybe leeds or somewhere similar. Also reference to the zombie, drug reference, maybe try to create hallucinations. Or we could have a zombie walking down the street eating a veggie bite sandwich, with over the top gore adding humor.

To include the other band members maybe 4 members including the main singer. Have a drummer buskin on the street in a unusual location, the singer can than throw a coin or something in his hat, than joins in on journey, picking up each band member like this. Most likely to be George being the main singer and 3 other band members.

We haven't yet considered outfit codes but i think it will be quite bohemian.


Opening up in the town center, with someone not in the band as whilst he is playing the drums the band will be driving behind the drummer, in hippy van or ' a beat up combie' as it is referred to in the songs lyrics. Perhaps on the island in between the the two zebra crossings, sat alone. We are thinking this would be a long shot, gradually zooming in.

Cutting to them in the back of the van, drinking beer something, having a good time on their journey.

To be inter cut with them walking in a line along the moors, around sundown, with backpacks and instruments, to signify the different aspects of their journey.

Zombie ?

Falling ?

Unsure about chorus still.

Bar layout

Monday, 24 January 2011

Biography of the Band/History of the Track

Men at Work are the only Australian band to achieve a simultaneous number one album and single in both the United States and the United Kingdom.
In 1978 a duo between Scottish-born Colin Hay and Roy Strykert then later the addition of the drummer Jerry Speiser and the keyboard player, notable for the style of progressive rock, Greg Sneddon. In 1979 Sneddon was replaced with Greg Ham who was also a saxophonist and flautist, and John Rees on bass.
The name of the band comes from Colin Hay's attraction to the yellow road signs saying "Men at Work" on construction sites in Sydney.
The band was signed by Columbia records in 1981. Their first album Business as Usual, released 9th November 1981, went to number one in Australia, New Zealand, USA and UK. The band toured the USA supporting Fleetwood Mac as they tried gaining recognition and promoting their album.
Business as Usual was at number one in the USA for 15 weeks, and in October 1982 their new single Who Can It Be Now? also went to number one.

In January 1983 both single Down Under and album Business as Usual were at number one in USA and UK, their single Be Good Johnny received good airplay and attention in USA.
They won a Grammy award in 1983 for Best New Artist, as well as a Canadian Juno Award.
Jerry Speiser and John Ree's left the band, the remaining members then released their 3rd album Two Hearts which had very much a different feel to the other records they had released, emphasised mostly drums and synthesisers. Strykert then left the band during the album production, so new band members were hired - Jeremy Alsop on bass, Mark Kennedy on drums and James Black on guitar. Colin Bayley was then added as a third guitarist and Chad Wackerman replaced Mark Kennedy on the drums.
The addition of these new members gave the band a more jazzy, progressive rock style and perhaps pushed them more towards the New Wave music genre, not as pop as their earlier more bohemian, reggae inspired style.

Colin Hay has since gone onto release single albums though occasionally still reunites with Greg Ham to play at certain events like the Sydney Olympics in 2000 or in 2009 for the Australia Unites - Victorian Bushfire Appeal Telethon.

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Genre Overview

The Music of men at work is not really a solid genre, but more a hybrid, New Wave is perhaps the closest single to describe it as, as well as Rock/Pop and to an extent reggae too.
New Wave is a subgenre of rock music, which was born in the 1970's in Britain and the United States, it coincided with the Punk Revolution, it was experimental and with classic rock aspects and more contemporary electronic and disco music.
New Wave musicians did not want to be associated with the Punk style anarchism of bands like The Sex Pistols but recognized in their own right. Many bands and artists arose as "New Wave" including Ian Dury, Dr. Feelgood and Elvis Costello. Bands like Madness were put into this category, adding dance beat to the style of music. The music later became softer and the add of synthesizer's making it more ambitious and less "pop" inspired. Similar to Joy Division and The Cure. During the 1980's many adopted the style of music like The Human League, Depeche Mode and The Pet Shop Boys. 
Current bands have been influenced strongly by this genre like The Killers, Bloc Party and The Kaiser Chiefs.

There is a connection with the style of music Men at Work perform and that of The Police as they both use a style of reggae in their music, being one of the first white and British bands to perform reggae inspired music, as well as the Clash. The Police are often classed as one of the first New Wave bands to gain mainstream success.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Treatment on "Down Under"

Men at Work - Down Under
George Scaife and Elizabeth McPhail

Down Under was recorded by the Australian band 'Men at Work' for the their debut album, Business as Usual, in 1981. It went to number one in the United Kingdom, the United States and Australia.
The song has a sense of irony in it as it is now regarded as a patriotic Australian song, though this is in some ways a correct interpretation it is not the usual form, the song is more about people appreciating what the country has to offer and distance itself from the "plundering" of the country, and less about flag-waving and nationalism.
The genre of the song is known as New Wave-Pop, with a bohemian feel to it, the song uses a lot of percussion instruments as well as the "motif" of the flute instrumental between each chorus and verse, which caused controversy as many thought that was based on the children's song "Kookaburra Song" and led to a court case over copyright in 2009.

There are only the two of us in our group, Elizabeth and myself, It was initially my pitch and Elizabeth liked the idea so we joined forces. We decided that I would be the singer in our music video as I enjoy acting and singing and thought there would be scope here to do so and also find other people to play the band members. We thought we'd try to share the director role between us as well as filming, I will try take care of casting and costume, etc. and Elizabeth was going to focus on settings and location and as well props like the car.
The basic outline of our coursework is to create a promotion package of an album including a music video for our chosen track, being Down Under - Men at Work,  as well as a release cover - digipak and a magazine advertisement for the digipak.
Our Music Video is Joy Division meets the Rolling Stones, it will be a mixture of both Concept and Performance as we wanted to make the lyrics to the song metaphorical and interpret them ourselves rather than having a narrative video and taking the obscure lyrics literally.
The Music Video will have a core and secondary target audience, to an extent both equally important. Our core audience will be a youth audience, mainly eighteen year olds as it will be showed around school and therefore we want it to appeal to fellow students, as it is quite a punk/bohemian style this is likely to appeal to students and a younger audience (revolutionary?).
However as the original song is from the early 1980's we would like to re-vamp the song and get it to appeal to the people that already know the same well and were young when it was released, so a more mature audience may well be attracted to it as they were alive during the new-wave, punk revolution.

We want to create the feel of traveling in our video, and make a lot of the setting outdoors, the early shots of the film An American Werewolf in London spring to my mind, the whole back packer image climbing around of the moors, Australian tourist, whilst the song is in many ways about Australia it doesn't have to be set there. I'd like a lot of the clothing to be quite bohemian, individual andunconventional. There is a chance in the opening verse we may dress the lead singer or another band member up as a zombie, taking a metaphorical take on the use of drugs and symbolizing it without having to the show the smoking of marijuana as this would be illegal to show on a music video.
We would desperately like to be able to get a Volkswagen hippy van to use in the film as this would be perfect, though if this proves to be impossible then we have a quirky back up idea of using almost a toy car to add humour to our video. Again we would like to use a lot Australian cultural icons and symbols like Didgeridoo, Victoria Bitter/Foster's, Vegemite, Rugby, Cricket, Australian Rules, Aboriginal Art, Koala Bears, Kangaroo's, etc. Also the use of the Australian flag being prominent in many scenes to show the link to Australia and the travels of the backpacker.

For our digipak we had the idea of perhaps having a hybrid peace symbol/heart drawn on the floor and showing the feet of the and members around it, a variety of shoes - boots, sandals, etc., on the front cover. As well as the use of aboriginal art on the design of the digipak, and on the inside a nice band shot of them perhaps sitting on a sofa in the middle of a field, or a fence and wearing unusual clothing and yet creating a link between all the members.
Lead singer (Vocals/Guitar) - George Scaife
Guitar/Backing Vocals - Joseph Iliff
Drum/Backing Vocals -
Percussion (Flute, Keyboard, Harmonica, Saxophone) - Tom Bearpark
Bass/Backing Vocals -

Our opening shot will be of a bohemian/hippy character, member of the band playing the drums, like bongo's to the beat of the music. Banging down on them, done in a mid-close up shot, this will then either pull away or move to a tracking shot showing he is a busker on the side of the street/road and a (hopefully) Volkswagen hippy van drives past containing the rest of the band members.

Monday, 10 January 2011

Down Under - timings

Instrumental - 12 seconds

Traveling in a fried-out combie - 00:12
On a hippie trail, head full of zombie - 00:17
I met a strange lady, she made me nervous - 00:22
She took me in and gave me breakfast - 00:25
And she said, - 00:29

"Do you come from a land down under? - 00:30
Where women glow and men plunder? - 00:35
Can't you hear, can't you hear the thunder? - 00:39
You better run, you better take cover." - 00:43

Instrumental - 00:47 - 00:56

Buying bread from a man in Brussels - 00:57
He was six-foot-four and full of muscles - 01:01
I said, "Do you speak-a my language?" - 01:06
He just smiled and gave me a vegemite sandwich - 01:10
And he said, - 01:14

"I come from a land down under - 01:15
Where beer does flow and men chunder - 01:20
Can't you hear, can't you hear the thunder? - 01:24
You better run, you better take cover." - 01:28

Instrumental - 01:32 - 01:59

Lyin' in a den in Bombay - 02:00
With a slack jaw, and not much to say - 02:04
I said to the man, "Are you trying to tempt me - 02:09
Because I come from the land of plenty?" - 02:13
And he said, - 02:17

"Do you come from a land down under? - 02:18
Where women glow and men plunder? - 02:22
Can't you hear, can't you hear the thunder? - 02:26
You better run, you better take cover." - 02:31

Living in a land down under - 02:35
Where women glow and men plunder - 02:40
Can't you hear, can't you hear the thunder? - 02:44
You better run, you better take cover! - 02:49

Living in a land down under - 02:53
Where women glow and men plunder - 02:58
Can't you hear, can't you hear the thunder? - 03:02
You better run, you better take cover! - 03:07

03:07 - 03:28

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Digipak's (EM/GS)

A digipak is usually made up in a "gatefold" style and of a card or paper fabric, and the term Digipak is the only common term refering to the type of packaging.
The style is generally used for CD single's or special edition CD's, they have been popular among artists and record labels since 2000. They are generally made to be more environmentally friendly and having recycable components in the trays of the Digipaks.
Digipak is a registered trademark of AGI Media, MeadWestvaco, Inc.

 This Digipak "A Strange Arrangement" by Mayer Hawthorne is a deluxe edition, it includes a full CD as well as a 4.5 Vinyl single, so here they are trying to make the special edition more attractive in a different type of case to the usual jewel case.
Sunday, 9 January 2011Digipaks

Digipaks are often present in the form of a book, either paperback or card with a binding. Digipaks are used an alternative to plastic cases or jewel cases by large record companies.
It is most likely a Digipak will be used for CD singles or special editions of CD albums.
However they do have limitations, the Digipak is not as durable as jewel cases. Showing signs of wear and tear relatively fast.
Digipaks grew in popularity within record labels and recording artists in the early 2000's, they have also recently become eco-friendly with trays being made of recycled bottles.
Digipaks were only available to buy in large quantities however a new product has recently being introduced called ' digipak i-create' it is a web-supported concept that allows you to access the same information about the band but also online music downloads, photo's. This does however allow for a wider target audience.
Usually made from: 300gsm card with matt or gloss varnish. Printed 4 colours (CMYK) or Pantone colours. Spot varnish, lamination and embossing available. - (animation of a Digipak)

Digipak Ideas

  • Maybe incorporate aboriginal art and obvious Australian themes and images.
  • Have the band featured on the cover.