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Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old July 4th, 2010, 07:48 PM   #1
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Songs for video

Currently I'm working on only my second wedding video, and the one thing that stumped me on my first and is stumping me again now is what song to use. How do yall make that decision? Do yall decide or let the customer? The video I'm working on now, I asked the customer if they had any preference, and they told me what their special song was, but left it up to me to make the final decision (and I'll tell you their special song is an editing nightmare). Some tips or suggestions as to what yall veteran videographers do would be helpful.

thanks,
Anthony Pekowski
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Old July 4th, 2010, 10:53 PM   #2
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whats their special song? post the title here - maybe it's not bad. Also it will be easier to find replacement and match the mood.

I have a library of song I like to use, but most of the time I tell customers that I need 5-6 song for the whole video and they are happy that they can participate in the production process.
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Old July 5th, 2010, 01:56 AM   #3
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Anthony, I'm afraid this is another of those areas in which the best advice is to learn your craft - and that means do it. Make edits with "nightmare" music, try different things, different approaches and above all look at what others are doing.

When you do the last remember also that at the end of the decision chain isn't an award winning or 30 year experienced professional but a client, so don't assume that everything you see by a well-known exponent is "right". Remember what they've done is just one way - and there are so many variables. Just like in music; Beethoven and the Beatles used the same 13 notes but it's the way they're used that mamakes the difference, so make your own decision about other people's work.

As far as who decides, I can do no better than invite you to read our site but that's our policy and not for everybody.

Finally, after half a lifetime making programmes I regard a "nightmare" piece of music as a challenge but then I'm confident enough to be able to make a half decent purse out of any sow's ear.

Do it, make mistakes and learn from them. Good luck.
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Old July 5th, 2010, 02:37 AM   #4
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I am having a similar problem and this is how I am going about trying to solve it.

I have some questionable footage to work with from two cams. One I shot, one I didn't. I really did try my darnedest to edit to the footage, giving the best stuff exposure and the worst the trash can. What I am doing is the first dance, and doing it like we have done band promo videos, lots of 2,4,5 and 6 second segments etc, cut to the song's beat or lyrics.

When I tried cutting to the footage, it didn't flow and generally sucked. I tried, I cussed, I swore, got frustrated and finally gave up.

I then opened a new project and stuck the two sets of footage into it, along with one duplicate set, and then shut off the editing monitor in Premiere, hit "play" and made cuts to the duplicate at the points where the SONG should have been cut.

What I have now at least flows and the cuts appear at good spots to the music. I functionally alternated footage from the two cameras at the cut points and inserted it into the main timeline where the song dictates that length/duration of footage should be.

As I said, what I have now, at least flows, and now I am in the process of "tweaking" and "correcting" and in general, playing around with it to keep the flow, but make what I have as presentable as possible.

When I tried cutting to the footage, when in the timeline with the song, if the song dictates a certain segment should be exactly 4 seconds long, but because of the footage I needed to go 5 seconds and 12 frames, or, I only had enough decent footage for 2 seconds and 26 frames, after you assemble a couple of dozen of those in a row like that, you get some pretty crappy video.
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Old July 5th, 2010, 04:02 PM   #5
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The song is Will You Go With Me by Josh Turner, I guess I was just a bit frustrated last night, and it's not quite a "nightmare" song in general, but for this particular video its very challenging, considering it's a fast paced country song and the wedding was a pretty slow paced elegant one. But I really do agree with you Philip, I should look at this as a challenge rather than a dilemma, also I am from now on going to ask prior to editing for the clients to give me a list of a few songs or at least genres like you said Lukas.
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Old July 5th, 2010, 05:53 PM   #6
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You can take some comfort in knowing that the pace of the event does not have to dictate the pace of your edit. My only advice would be to look for ways to keep the energy of the film up to match the fast moving music without relying too much on special effects.

Alec Moreno
Wedding Art Films - Southern California - Los Angeles - Orange County - Video
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Old July 5th, 2010, 06:51 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anthony Pekowski View Post
The song is Will You Go With Me by Josh Turner,......
Go look at the video for the song:

YouTube - Josh Turner - Would You Go With Me

That is not cut and filled with exceptionally short clips at all.

BUT.....that is not elegant, much better suited to some type of "trailer", highlights etc.

In this case, if there was music during the ceremony, I would go with one of those, and bag this one for now.
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Old July 5th, 2010, 09:00 PM   #8
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It's also a good idea to get a copy of the disk from the bride if songs are going to be played during the ceremony. Last weekend the CD player of the officiant played about one line of the song and then burped and spat the disk out. Desperate efforts to cue another song resulted in the bride arriving and being in place and ready to roll before they could do anything!! The resultant bridal arrival had about 15 seconds of music followed by a hushed silence.
I had the song so dubbing it in was pretty easy and the bride was very happy about that!!

They usually make up a disk for the "wedding songs" so I now make a point of saying burn an extra disk for me so I have a backup if something goes wrong or the live audio isn't that good!! Our officiants here don't exactly have the best PA anyway and it's an "all-in-one" so a feed is out of the question too!!

Chris
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Old July 5th, 2010, 09:46 PM   #9
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Great suggestion Chris !

Reading it reminded me of the next song I have to do, the Father/ Daughter dance for the same wedding reception.

Like you mention about dubbing in, what I have for audio for the special dances sucks. I always intended to dub over the correct audio, mixing on the ambient of the room to make it feel "live". One problem I had, I did not know the names of two of the three songs that were played. No big deal.... I just ripped mp3s f what I had and sent it out to some people I knew, to see if they knew. One of those people was the manager of the DJ company, that did the reception. Those I sent the mp3s to, emailed back with the names, but Rich, the manager of the DJ company wrote and told me they use their own abbreviated version of the Father Daughter dance's song, and he ripped a copy for me and sent it my way.

I don't even want to think what kind of nightmare that might have been, had I not known or been able to get the version that was played in the video.
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Old July 5th, 2010, 09:49 PM   #10
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Anthony,

I agree with Phillip , this is really a learning experience...the song ain't half bad..for us we rather edit to fast paced music than slow music.. i once had to edit to this song ..check it out..

YouTube - The Veronicas - Untouched [OFFICIAL VIDEO]

Good luck!

Kren
www.verticalvideoworks.ca
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Old July 6th, 2010, 01:34 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kren Barnes View Post
Kren.... in my book... you hold the crown for "nightmares" with that one !!!! :-)
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Old July 6th, 2010, 10:08 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chip Thome View Post
Kren.... in my book... you hold the crown for "nightmares" with that one !!!! :-)
Hahaha! Thanks! actually it was a great learning experience since it gave me a chance to put together a complete MTV-type edit, ultra fast cuts, no transitions...the client was happy so it worked out...

Kren
www.verticalvideoworks.ca
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