Daniel Caesar's 'Pilgrim's Paradise' is a another project I've been working on since late Summer. Liam [MacRae] and I spent the past few months putting an entire presentation together that I trust is a reflection of Danny's music as a whole. Most artists today, especially budding artists, don't have the luxury of entering the music business prepackaged. As the traditional structure of the music business evolved, many aspects that developed artists previously are now disregarded or often overlooked. This isn't to say there aren't artists today that push the boundaries with their album artwork, but I do feel it's become more of a luxury to have great presentation than it is a standard. From the colour palette, wardrobe, to live performance, this is a brief recap of how we tied sound and visualization together.
First, we would scout and decide on a set of locations. We hit cemeteries, churches, harbour fronts, watched classic music videos and bought old CDs and vinyl just to look at the artwork. We saw the care and detail put into albums of the past—the imagery was just as necessary as the music, and that became our approach to this project. Liam and I were constantly back and forth, challenging each other's ideas in search of the most effective concept.
Being brought up religious myself served as an advantage for this project. I could identify with much of Danny's subject matter and translate it visually. These two-faced antiques (above) were among many props we hand picked from East Room. One of my favourite stories from the Bible is of a dude named Lot and his wife, who after disobeying God's instructions not to look back while escaping Sodom—turned to salt. These marble heads remind me of that story whenever I see them.
The live show was intimate, heartfelt and seamless. Man, I just want to see this kid win. We had the creative freedom we needed and I was able to put a lot of energy into this project being a fan of the music first. If you haven't heard any of Danny's stuff yet, you can stream it here, and purchase it there.