Malka by Gareth A Hopkins.
Tamara Schlesinger of Malka (formerly of the much loved 6 Day Riot) makes a triumphant return with the glorious tribal beats of new single Into The Night. It’s a step away from the acoustic sounds of the band she used to front, yet bears her unmistakable imprint in a sing along melody about the horrors of insomnia. Here she introduces the neon saturated video, made with a little help from legions of creative friends. And who knew her former career as an international gymnast could be put to such good use?
It’s late on a hot Tuesday night in an industrial estate in Walthamstow and I am looking around a darkened room filled with a group of my friends that are in the middle of shooting my latest music video for me.
It strikes me how much we are all enjoying ourselves, no-one is being paid for this, we are here for the love of it. I consider how lucky I am to have such talented friends that love their own creative art as much as I love mine, and therefore are willing to while away these long hours surrounded by hot neon lights and UV paint.
We managed to secure God’s Own Junkyard for our location which houses amazing neon artworks designed by Chris Bracey. My friend Stephanie Bamsey wrote a blog about him a few years ago, and while we were sitting drinking beers at the Wild Card Brewery (across the road from GOJY) I begged her to ask if they might let us shoot our video there.
Tamara MALKA by Karolina Burdon.
So fast forward 3 weeks and here we are. Steph’s husband (the director Lee Bamsey) has been back and forth from the venue over numerous days checking out which areas we want to capture and how we are going create the video (along with a timeline). Steven Gray (D.O.P.) has arrived with the most hi-tech gear I have ever had the pleasure to see in person and is calmly setting up. And Ellie Worthington is creating my UV face paint to tie in with the UV-splattered catsuit I prepared earlier in the week.
Malka by Lizzie Donegan.
I often think about what it is that makes me need to make music. After having a few years break following the birth of my daughter I realised that it is just in my bones. I am compelled to do it, I need to write music and I love to perform it. The same can be said for my friends in this room. They are here because they love their art and spending a sweaty evening creating this music video is a pleasure not a chore. All of them make a living within the film industry but they are still willing to get involved in a project that interests them – pay or no pay.
In walks my husband, Martin Macdonald. He has managed to get our daughter to sleep and has left our good friend babysitting. He is editing the video (which is also his full time job) and has arrived just in time for me to prance around under a UV light. I love dancing, I used to be an international gymnast and with this project I felt it would really let the audience connect with me as an artist to show that side of me.
The shoot wraps at around midnight, everyone is exhausted but delighted with the way the shoot has gone. Martin spends the next week editing the video (with ongoing tweaks throughout the month). And by the skin of our teeth we get an edit that everyone is happy with by the release date of the single.
The end product is nothing short of excellent. I know that with the work that everyone has put in (including the colourist Kenny Gibb) and the normal cost of the venue and gear etc.. that we would be up in the 10’s of thousands for the cost of something like this. But here I am, thanks to my amazing friends (and family) with a video that I hope connects the song to me as an artist and creates the right visual identity for my new project.
The song Into The Night is the lead single from my forthcoming album under my new guise MALKA. It is a change in direction from my 6 Day Riot days, gone are the acoustic instruments and in their place are synths and tribal beats. And so, I wanted the video to be a step away from what I had done before too. Lee has directed all of my videos thus far and Martin has also edited them all, so they know what I like and they know my budget (none).
Running my own record label (Tantrum Records) for 12 years has been hard work, but somehow I have managed to find the money to record, release and promote all 5 (and now my forthcoming 6th) albums. I am at a place in the industry where I don’t have the massive marketing budgets to spend on every release, but I can afford to do what I do thanks to publishing/sync deals or touring/sales (or evening funding from Creative Scotland) and thanks to a little help from my friends.
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