Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Crazy for the Eli Young Band

Flippin’ It

So the Eli Young Band slowly ran a monster hit, “Crazy Girl” up the charts and into the awards season nominations ballots with a video that was nowhere near as good as the song. It featured some kind of love story about busting a girl out of a mental institution — clearly a too-literal interpretation of the song’s double entendre.

The girl is crazy — about him, crazy with love, apt to think foolish things because of her feelings. She’s not actually insane. That’s simply creepy.

Someone at their label finally got the hint and decided to switch their official video to one which plays on an old standby: the concert experience video. This has worked very well for the Eli Young Band before, with their hit “Always the Love Songs.”

A concert experience video is excellent marketing because it suggests (strongly) to the casual viewer that this band is Hot and Happening: that thousands of fans have cottoned on to something before you that you clearly need to check out. Music fans want to feel like they’re not missing out — and nothing makes them feel they are more than a wildly exciting-looking concert.

Pretty much everyone releases one at some point in their career — Eric Church’s video for “Drink In My Hand” uses live footage and fan interviews effectively, and his tour-mate Brantley Gilbert’s label, The Valory Music Company, is placing their bets on it helping to launch their new star up where Church is.

The concert experience video is not the same as a live performance video. It simply lays the studio track over live footage of the band singing that song mixed with backstage and audience shots. Jason Aldean’s “Big Green Tractor” is a live performance; Tim McGraw’s “Cowboy In Me” is a studio track with audience screaming added. It is the ultimate in “look at me, I’m a superstar” PR. His upcoming tour-mate Kenny Chesney loves the concert experience format — with good reason — it showcases why he’s won Entertainer of the Year so many times. Here’s his last tour summed up in a nutshell in “Reality.”

Taylor Swift’s “Sparks Fly” video was mostly a trailer for her DVD, but it still gave you an idea what her live show is like.

Valory needs to stop putting Justin Moore in slick story videos and give us a live performance video of “Outlaws Like Me” as the next single. Seriously. What are they waiting for? 

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