Indie sensation Lucy Dacus recently collaborated with local filmmaker Hunter Brumfield to create a 1960s t
Indie sensation Lucy Dacus recently collaborated with local filmmaker Hunter Brumfield to create a 1960s talk show inspired music video for the lead single “I Don’t Wanna Be Funny Anymore” off of her album No Burden.
The video, which was released on Pitchfork’s YouTube channel this morning, represents a labor of love for a large portion of Richmond’s creative community .
Brumfield, who directed the video, has been doing film work since he graduated from VCU’s film program in 2014, however, this was his first time creating a music video. More familiar with creating narratives, working on a music video proved to be an interesting change of pace for Brumfield.
“For a music video you listen to the song and you feel the visuals coming to you, and you feel the edits come to you,” Brumfield said. “But when you’re writing a film you don’t have that audio to start with, you’re coming up with it from scratch.”
Dacus and Brumfield met in November and discussed their plans for the video, eventually deciding on a project that involved a stage and nearly 40 extras. Drawing inspiration from 50’s and 60;s talk shows, Brumfield tried to create a vision that was in line with both their artistic aesthetics.
“I tried to go for something that was heartfelt, cheerful, and a little campy. Something I’m trying to do as an artist is avoid irony because I’m kind of over that,” Brumfield said. “Ultimately I tried to create something that makes you feel an honest emotion. Lucy is very earnest as a performer and I wanted to capture that.”
With nearly 40 extras and a crew of 16, this was the largest shoot Brumfield had ever directed. However, despite the size, Brumfield said he had no difficulty managing the shoot.
According to Brumfield, everyone at the shoot was either a friend of Dacus’ or a member of the Richmond artistic community and knew what goes into making art and a short film or video.
“I don’t think I’ll ever have as easy a time with extras again,” he said.
One such extra was Mackenzie Werner, longtime friend of Dacus, and a student in VCU’s cinema program. Werner, who usually works behind the scenes on local video projects, instead participated in front of the camera.
“I’ve worked with [Dacus] on a bunch of videos and she made a Facebook event for all of her close friends that was like ‘Come be an extra’ because they had some choreographed dances they needed people to fill out,” Werner said.
Brumfield said other local folks, like the production company The Branching and his Director of Photography Julian Ashbee, were also key to the video’s success.
“Julian really knew how to craft the great imagery that was needed for this video,” he said. He’s such a pro and I was really lucky to grab him…. [And] Lucas and Al Krost at The Branching were so kind to lend me their resources and knowledge throughout the whole process.”
“I Couldn’t of done it without them.”
Though this was Brumfield’s first music video he hopes the experience opens doors for further work with musicians.
“I’ve already talked with a few other musicians about projects,” Brumfield said. “Lucy (Dacus) and I are talking about working on a video for another track of No Burden, but I’m not sure how much I can say about that yet.”
Keep an eye out for future collaborations from these two exponentially rising talents, Richmond, as they’re sure to be something special.