I’ve written about Cash Sirois and Jason Seely at The Well before, and you probably know Cash’s twin brother Mike from his work on The Ticket. Watch this video they put together, scored to a Bastards of Soul song, “Back to the City,” and then read Cash’s thoughts on why they did this.
“When this new normal was being floated, but restaurants were still open, I’d already started having my mind wander when thinking about what our social activity might become. It turned out that we had reservations early on the night of the 16th, and heard on our way to dinner that everything would be closed at midnight for the foreseeable future. Which gave that meal a real odd finality. Like when you are having that last drink with your buddies after college graduation, or after the parade when the Mavs won the championship—if you think about it in that moment, this will be the last time that we get together like this for a while, and we all go our separate ways …
“Then it occurred to me, since we’re closing everything, who’s to say that the next step might not be everyone being forced to stay inside completely. Which meant, if we were going to capture our favorite public gathering places completely empty on a Friday night, we probably needed to do it on the first one, just in case we didn’t have an option moving forward.
“We love this place, and this version of it was going to go away for a while.
“So my brother, Mike, and I went out into the night on Friday the 20th to see what we could see. The plan was to capture places that would normally be packed on a cool, but comfortable, Friday night and take note of the times as we flew the drone over empty bars, restaurants, and music venues we’ve been to hundreds of times before.
“The whole thing was eerie, like a movie set waiting for someone to yell ‘action.’ I was even able to walk right down the middle of Elm Street in Deep Ellum with the drone at eye level in front of me, which was bizarre.
During the shoot by the Granada we even ran into the owner, Mike Schoeder, who is the one you see waving at the camera in front of Sundown. We chatted with him a bit and he shared that he’d just had to lay off a bunch of good people, and how much that was weighing on him.
“Jason Seely is the editing genius at The Well and, as usual, when we came in with emotionally striking footage, he made it better.
“One of my favorite shots was of the marquee at The Kessler which was the spot, just six weeks earlier, Bastards of Soul had held their debut album release party. We wanted local music to cover these local images and we hoped to ‘feel’ the whole thing when it came together. ‘Back To The City’ is a song off that album and set the perfect tone for what we felt walking through those empty streets.”