Have you seen the latest viral video that’s sweeping the world? It’s even better than that one of the girl who is afraid of pickles, and certainly does more good for humanity.
I’m talking about the latest Clickhole video, called “Take the Pledge”. And it just so happens to feature a bunch of Wesleyan students and alumni, including Neo Sora ’14 as a pledge-taker from Japan named Taku.
This strong Wes presence is thanks to Will Feinstein ’13who works for Clickhole and reached out to friends from Wesleyan, like Eric Lopez ’15to help put the video together. Try to spot all the Wes folks, starting about 1 minute in.
Come to Eclectic this Friday night to see Northampton indie rock band Speedy Ortiz and their grungy blend of guitars, thoughtful lyrics, and 90s sensibilities. The much buzzed-about band, featuring Wesleyan graduate Darl Ferm ’12 on bass, is coming to Wesleyan with much anticipation after an unfortunately cancelled show at Earth House last spring. Playing with Speedy Ortiz will be Burlington, VT experimental pop musician Ryan Power.
SPEEDY ORTIZ – grungy northampton indie rock
RYAN POWER – weirdo vermonter pop
NEO SORA – ambient fun
“Buy all of your friends’ presents tonight.” This is the command of the Spirit of Thirty-Fork Street, Wesleyan’s sometimes-friendly-but-often-awkward Ghost of Christmas Past. (It probably doesn’t help that we don’t have a Ghost of Chanukah Past.) Anyway, if you’re on top of that, good for you. If you’re not, first take an hour to download and listen to Miracle on Thirty-Fork Street, a holiday season compilation of original (!) songs put together by a loose collective of Wesleyan-associated acts. Then, freaking consume, you consumer. Here are some reflections, lightly edited for reading ease, from a contributor:
The album was made by an extended group of friends (we mostly know each other). All of these friends are either from Wesleyan or closely related to folks at Wesleyan. These are all ORIGINAL holiday songs. No covers! It’s really lame that the majority of holiday songs were written in the baby boomer era. So here are some new ones.
This album is dedicated in part to Will Schragis ’12, who approached me (and others) last year trying to put together a holiday album where he and his friends who actually played music would do covers. Unfortunately it never came together.
The title is a reference to the Static Stamina/Japanese holiday EP It’s a Wonderful KNIFE!, which is actually one of the most hated things on the ACB ever.
The Ivy Film Festival’s 48 Hour Film Competition has appeared on this blog multiple times in recent years. The competition is open to teams of students based at colleges anywhere, and according to its website, claims the following motivations:
The time constraint of 48 hours energizes the filmmaking process and challenges students to put their visions into action. The result is a whirlwind weekend of filmmaking and the satisfaction of a finished product at the end. Our goal is to promote creativity and filmmaking, and to light the spark under hopeful filmmakers across the country.
While uninformed observers may find this “fun”, “cool”, or “generally a good idea”, the picture is not so simple. The critical thinking skills that my time at Wesleyan has bestowed upon me – and hopefully Wesleying readers – reveal something much more sinister. I’d like to start by looking at the winners of the 48 hour competition from past years.
Anyone remember Nujabes? The sorely missed jazz-hop producer collaborated with a variety of rappers throughout his lifetime; one of the most notable might be Shing02, without whom this captivating music video for Nujabes and Shing02’s track “Luv (sic) Pt. 2” might never have seen the light of day.
Shing0 works in multiple mediums, and when he wanted someone to handle cinematography for a short film he directed — set to the song “Out of Your Element” by Brooklyn-based indie/dream-pop outfit The Attic Ends — he went with Neo Sora ’14. Though Sora may not have received the director credit, the premise of the video (YouTube commenter: “technology causes people to be isolated from other people”) relies heavily on the shots themselves, so Sora’s involvement was central. Check out the video when you’ve got five minutes today, and you’ll have a great excuse to walk up to him at a party. I’d give you a picture to help further the endeavor, but the best I could find was this mysterious snapshot.
Michael Steves ’13 is creating a new Wesleyan webseries called “The Internationals.” More about it in his own words:
Watch the new Wesleyan webseries, “The Internationals”, a comedy about the freshman year of a hall of international students! In the first of thirteen episodes, the hallmates meet each other and play a name game. Meanwhile, Willie Hayward of Fairbanks, Alaska attempts to leave the international hall on which he has accidentally been placed.