PLDN TALKS – Dani Sylvia – ‘How to make a music video on a budget’


Hi, my name is Dani Sylvia, and I’m a singer-songwriter. I make miserable pop music. Sometimes it’s miserable. Sometimes it’s not that miserable, but mainly it is miserable. So. In this Paradise London Talk, I’m going to share with you. It’s not really advice. It’s, it is kind of more like a story. I guess.

I’m just going to talk to you about my, latest single, which is called Zachariah and kind of the story behind it, and then how I made the music video for it. On my own DIY. So the song is a little story about, online dating. It’s basically about getting way too attached way too early on to somebody that you meet online.

One of my best friends rang me one day. He was really, really upset because this guy that he’d been seeing, had ghosted him and, he didn’t know what to do. You could really see a future, with this guy. And I was like, wow. So how long have you been seeing each other? How many dates have you been on? And he was like, Oh, no, we’ve, we’ve never actually met. And I was like, that’s just really weird. But I kind of understood it because actually, , online dating or like dating apps have become the new kind of seeing each other, haven’t they in a way. So then instead of consoling him, what I did was I went and wrote a song about it.

I did consult him. A tiny, tiny bit. Yeah. Cause I’m such a good friend. I wrote a song about his pain and it’s called Zachariah, and it is on all of the Spotifies and the iTunes and all the things and the Deezers. So then what I thought was, I am basically a DIY musician because no label will have me.

Independent musicians don’t. Usually have a budget at all. This song needs a music video because it’s a story. So how can I do it for free? So what I did was, and this is something that’s kind of educational for any DIY musicians out there. I made a music video for this song, which is on YouTube now, and you can check it out.

I created it using just an iPhone seven plus, and I ordered a ring light, which is actually. What I’m currently using to film this and also a gimbal. I’m going to show you my gimbal. I’m going to stand up, but I’m going to cut because I may or may not be wearing pants. So I’m back. I am wearing pants.

[00:02:24] Of course, this is a gimbal. I mean, you all probably know what a gimbal is, but it’s really great. It’s run out of battery. So it’s not that great at the moment because the song is kind of about, what’s going on, like behind the screen by kind of wanted it to feel like you’re watching something you shouldn’t be watching.

So what I did was for a few weeks before my proper, like official shooting date. To where I kind of got my band together and everything. I would film myself like basically in whatever situation I was in, so it could be at home or it could be, out walking in a car park or out on a night out in my bedroom.

And I wanted it to look like the sort of videos that whoever this character was might send Zachariah. There’s kind of like mystery guy she’s obsessed with. And then on the actual day, I got my entire band over and my best friends. Literally like all my best friends and my best friend Alex actually filmed it.

Then we kind of set up this like shit bands situation in my garden and all of that, the sweeping shots of like the band, which I think looked quite cool. They look quite homemade, but they, I think they still look quite cinematic in a way. Cinematic as they can do with the setup. They were all done with this and my iPhone, we also had a scene.

Where we, me and my band just like found random instruments, like a treble recorder and like an Irish flute and just played along to the song and we could not stop laughing.

My Band and friends cost about 50 pounds to feed. So anyone kind of with a shoestring budget, who wants to make something, it is possible. I also edited this in iMovie. I would really recommend it because it’s hilarious and it’s really easy to do and it’s really, really cheap. The not so easy, but as the edit, that takes a long time and a lot of time and patience you can order the ring light and the gimbal all off Amazon. What I’m also doing now as a kind of DIY home made video, while we’re all in this weird situation, which we will all get through, I’ve direct messaged, or my fans, like fans who have been particularly interactive with me, they’ve got brand new single coming on Friday called mystery mastery, and I’ve asked them all to record them, like performing the song.

To camera and then to email me the video and I’m going to cut it all up. so that’s another idea. If you’re in quarantine and you need, you have a song and you need to make a music video for it, maybe message your fans see if they’ll help you see if they’ll like record footage, send it to you. and then you can chop it all up in iMovie and make an official video.

A Homemade style might not be your thing. You might be much more classy than me, but if you’re non-classy like I am, there are definitely ways that you can create content. And, create music videos to your songs during this quarantine. Keep creating, keep going, but also use this time to not put any pressure on yourself.

I think there’s a lot of focus on like the hustle and push forward and like always be working. In my day to day life normally, and actually this quarantine has given me kind of permission to slow down and maybe only create when I want to create. When I really feel inspired to. What I’d say is if anybody did want to make any homemade content, it is possible to make all-right looking, content at home with your phone and with simple tools like this.

Check out the single, check out the video is probably a better idea. It’s on YouTube. You type in Dani, Sylvia – Zachariah, you will find it. It’s there. Thank you so much to the Paradise London team for having me. I hope this was in some way educational. Sending everyone loads and loads of love to their quarantine.

Stay in touch with your friends and say the strong mental needs you can’t. And we will get through this and I think we’ll be better people on the other side of it as well. Thanks for listening. Bye.

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