Two local musicians are taking the next step in their music careers.
Recent graduate Ross Miller and senior Dylan West, who use the stage names Boss Miller and Dweezy James, released a music video for their song “What Up Now, Love?” Mar. 18. Since its release, the video has gained more than 1,000 views on YouTube.
The music video displays a failed relationship from the first time the couple meets to the eventual breakup and aftermath of the relationship. The music video was filmed entirely in Vermillion.
The music video stars University of South Dakota seniors Nealy Pesicka and Aaron McNeely with Miller making a cameo appearance at the end.
“We originally had scenes where I was more involved,” Miller said. “I didn’t want something to distract from the story.”
Miller said releasing the music video helps to ground the group as artists.
“Videos are the most powerful social media platform to establish yourself as an artist,” Miller said. “It’s just one step in the right direction.”
West said music videos are essential for modern music.
“People don’t respond well to just music anymore,” he said. “You need the full package to get their attention.”
The music video took a month to film followed by a week of editing. Miller said the concept of the video went through revision before reaching the final concept.
“It was originally going to be a relationship in reverse,” Miller said.
Miller credits director, cinematographer and editor Mason Horacek for the transformation to the final product.
“He led it to its end and brought in a dramatic twist,” Miller said. “He took it very literally.”
Junior Horacek said the idea behind the video was created during winter break.
“It took a lot of editing,” Horacek said. “We ended up getting the result we wanted.”
The music video transitions between black and white and color to differentiate the past and present, an idea Horacek said he thought of.
West, who produced the song, said he was pleased with the music video.
“I was very thrilled to see the depth,” West said.
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The lyrics for “What Up Now, Love?” were written by West and based on an experience with a past relationship. West said the song made the theme for the music video clear.
“By the song content, I knew where we were going to go,” West said.
Actors McNeely and Pesicka said filming the break-up scenes were difficult due to their real-life relationship.
“It was really hard, the fighting and arguments,” Pesicka said. “We would be yelling and just cracking up the entire time.”
Pesicka said during the fighting scenes the couple would jokingly yell at each other about buying spaghetti at Hyvee.
“Watching the video gives me a tingle,” Pesicka said.
McNeely said he thought going into filming that creating the scenes would be difficult.
“I figured the fight scenes would have been pretty awkward,” McNeely said.
Despite the breakup theme of the video, McNeely said there were scenes which were positive to film.
“I really liked the scene with me and Nealy, our first interaction,” McNeely said. “It gave me goosebumps.”
Pesicka, who acted in plays in high school, said she enjoys acting and would be interested in continuing to act in music videos.
“I would love to do anything like that in the future,” Pesicka said. “I loved the experience.”
McNeely has acted in Horacek’s music videos ever since the two were in eighth grade.
West and Miller are currently working on a video for a song which will be released in April. The song and music video will be released simultaneously.
West said the unreleased song and video will have a different theme than “What Up Now, Love?” The song will feature a local children’s choir.
The duo are scheduled to play at Maya Jane’s Bar and Grill Mar. 28 at 9 p.m.