Posts Tagged ‘Billy Joel’


Just so you know, this week’s post is not strictly about writing. It’s actually not about writing at all. But it is about creativity and making progress on one’s creative projects.

And there’s free stuff.

I’ve had this idea for a music video to go with Billy Joel’s song, “Running On Ice,” for about 25 years.  Half my life.

Thanks to YouTube and iMovie I have finally been able to actually make it.

About the time this song came out in the late 80s the PBS series American Masters aired three documentaries about silent film era greats Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton and Harold Lloyd.  I recorded all 8 hours of these (you know, on VHS tape) and watched them over and over all through my college years until I had them practically memorized.  And at that time Billy Joel was a big part of my personal play list (you know, on my Walkman).  At some point these two things collided in my brain, and thereafter every time I head the song “Running On Ice” — for the next 25 years — I pictured these silent film geniuses going through their paces, choreographed to the music. I had the whole thing worked out in my head. Only I had no way the actually edit the thing together and get the timing just right.

If you’re not familiar with the song, it is very frenetic, angsty, and full of cymbal crashes and drum rolls — the perfect soundtrack for the classic pratfall.  The song is about how difficult our fast-paced life can be, with all of our modern pressures and conveniences, and that pretty much sums up the films of these silent greats (only about 80 years less modern in their cases).

I think the video speaks for itself (here’s the free stuff I mentioned earlier).  Enjoy.

Now, if I can only get a couple of million dollars together, build a western town set with a bank and a saloon and hire a couple of dozen actors and a whole film production crew, I can start working on my other video idea … “The Ballad of Billy the Kid.”