By Crista Guthrie
The weather. The dresses. The makeup and hair. The technical difficulties. The hikes. The hauling. The sunburns. The time. The music . . . ALL WORTH IT!
Day 1: Swan Falls Dam
This is where we filmed Uprising on Bach’s Toccata. That was by far the windiest day! Curling my hair and using hairspray was basically pointless because my hair was EVERYWHERE! Not to mention my bow was about to fly away to Neverland if I didn’t grip onto it tight enough.
For each video, we– Parker Waldeck, Dakota his brother, Corbin, Trevor, and I– always spend a few hours before “golden hour” scouting the location to find the perfect view. Originally we were going to shoot the video in a desert area just outside of Kuna, Idaho, but there was a lot of litter shells everywhere from people going out there to shoot guns. We drove a few more miles down the road and came across beautiful Swan Valley. We parked our cars and began the next big process: getting the piano off the trailer and onto a flat area near the pretty view.
Day 2: The Huston School
What a fun day! I loved working with the children. We filmed “Little Star” at this small, old school that was mostly burned down not too long ago. The song features three very young kids on violin and (two) piano, and then two more slightly older, and then, of course, the big kids (us)! The point of the song is to show that hard work and discipline on violin and piano (and any instrument, really) can pay off!
Though we usually only film in late afternoon/evening because of the lighting, we had to be flexible with kids’ schedules as well as their attention spans. We lucked out with these kids, though! There were only a few moments where they needed a break, which is very necessary since filming a shot over and over is intense and tiring.
It was touching to watch the parents observe our filming process and see how proud they were of their kiddos. I hope we can work with kids again in the future! After all, they are our little rising stars!
Day 3: Silver City
Silver City is a very small, old mine town in Idaho, two hours from Boise. We filmed Falling Slowly here. It ended up taking us more than three hours to get there because we were driving the wrong direction for the first 45 minutes. Plus, we have to drive slower when driving with a big piano in a trailer.
When we arrived, there was NO ONE around at all. Every store and restaurant were closed. Good thing we brought snacks and water! Since no one was around, though, we were able to freely stick the piano on the gravel road in front of an old hotel and film some shots there.
Since my instrument is a little more portable than a piano, we also did some shots on top of a hill outside of a white chapel. The view was gorgeous!
The only interruptions we had were some four-wheelers driving through. Most of everyone gave us some blank stares and weird looks at the piano in the middle of the road. I guess they don’t see that every day, do they?
Also, the wardrobe for three of our videos was sponsored by SCOTTeVEST apparel! The red trench coat is featured in Falling Slowly, a black cardigan in Little Star, and a gray travel vest in Fireflies. Check out their website!
Day 4: Blue Lakes Country Club
Our next two videos were filmed in the beautiful city of Twin Falls, Idaho! The entire crew was able to stay at my Aunt Anne and Uncle Kevin’s house, a.k.a Guthrie Hotel. I am very grateful for family support, especially when they are close by!
My uncle had great connections with Blue Lakes Country Club, so we were able to access Signature Hole 6 on the golf course that is right off the Snake River and near the iconic Perrine Bridge. We filmed Sugar here! This is a medley of “Sugar” by Maroon 5 and “Sugar, Sugar” by the Archies. Why not mix oldies with something new?
Parker’s wife Lexi also arrived during this shoot. Lexi was VERY helpful with helping me with my hair styles for the last two videos! It was relieving to finally have a woman my age around the set. Before that, I was the only girl!
Day 5: Shoshone Falls!
The most thrilling day of them all! “Welcom Home” was the song of the day for this one. This is the day we stuck the piano on the corner of a pontoon boat, then the water, and then stuck me on a super high rocky cliff with a big waterfall going over it– in a dress. I also got VERY sunburned that day . . . You can probably even see some redness on my face in the video if you look close enough!
Our first location for this video was actually at Pillar Falls, which is a little upstream from Shoshone. For this video, this was the best spot for the piano because it was flat and the water was shallow. (That water was FREEZING, though!) There were lots of kayakers around so we actually had an audience that afternoon.
In order for me to smoothly access the rocks of Shoshone Falls, I had to wear some sweatpants and t-shirt and running shoes to hike through all the mud and thorns and puddles on the way down. I carried my dress in a bag and did my best not to mess my hair up. I strategically changed into my dress without revealing anything, and I hid behind a big rock so the tourists on the balcony on the other side wouldn’t see me. Then, I got my violin (who’s name is Francis, by the way) and walked onto the rocks barefoot.
The scariest thing for me that day wasn’t the heights. Shoshone Falls releases a very strong mist, and if I faced directly towards the falls for too long, my violin would get wet! No bueno! I found good angles and spots where there wasn’t as much mist, and everything was fine.
This is the first video of the six we released! PLEASE WATCH AND SHARE HERE!
Day 6: Centennial Marsh
Last day! Everyone was pretty exhausted at this point. Dakota Walbeck and I looked like tomatoes after we wrapped up everything from the night before. Aloe Vera became our best friend, and then sunscreen and lots of it. At least so we thought . . .
We drove about an hour and a half out to Camas County to some beautiful green marsh with fields of purple flowers to film our last song, “Fireflies.” It’s actually ironic that a type of bug is the title of the song, because we were surrounded by MANY bugs that day!
Marsh is a special kind of wetland that requires rain boots, so I picked out some cute turquoise ones to wear that day so that I didn’t get my feet too muddied up and soaked.
Poor Parker and Dakota got so many bites that day, which made it hard to hold a camera steady. I also did my best to focus on playing and not swat bugs away with my bow! Though we remembered sunscreen that day, we did not think about bug spray.
Filming music videos is definitely one of the most fulfilling things I have done. It is hard work and tiring, but the final product is amazing and can be shared to anybody anywhere at anytime! Technology in this day and age is truly fascinating. Let’s take advantage of it and share great music!