WORLD PREMIERE EXCLUSIVE: Nathan Leigh Jones ‘Crying Out For Love’

Nathan Leigh Jones and Director Josef Weber speak exclusively to TheAussieWord about their latest musical masterpiece. Crying Out For Love is the brand new single from talented Aussie Nathan Leigh Jones – wonderfully directed by the creative Josef Weber. 

theaussieword.com has the World Premiere!


Nathan speaks to me about writing the song, the idea for the video, why, where and how it was filmed and why marriage equality is important to him. It has been an absolute pleasure meeting both of these guys in the flesh. They have become good friends and big supporters of theaussieword.com – the feelings are mutual. I love these boys! Join me for this very special interview!


Nathan Leigh Jones…

I wrote Crying Out For Love while taking a break in the wonderful city of Melbourne. (That’s right, some Sydney people love Melbourne!) Like any big city, the streets are full of all kinds of people from all walks of life. It got me thinking — we’re all so different, but we’re all so similar. We just want to be valued, respected and loved. So, that night I sat down at a friend’s piano and this song came out. It makes the world a far less scary place when we realise that we’re all after the same basic thing, and if everybody gave it, imagine how much better we’d all be! An idealistic sentiment perhaps, but something that, when applied to the current marriage equality debate, makes the decision a no-brainer. Let people enjoy the same legal right to love as anybody else, regardless of how “different” we may think they are.

This video was directed by the very talented Josef J Weber. We’ve worked together before, on an earlier video for ‘Beautiful You’. I was so happy with how Beautiful You turned out. At one point last year, it was the #1 most requested song on Foxtel’s music channel MAX, which was super exciting. Josef and I were catching up for coffee a few months ago and I was telling him an idea I wished I could do someday for Crying Out For Love. Josef doesn’t mess around! Since he’s also passionate about the marriage equality movement, he was like, “Let’s do it! I’m directing it!”, and the video quickly became a reality. He totally delivered too… this video has a lot of heart and I’m so proud of what we captured.

It’s funny, this project was more like a documentary than a music video. No green screens or windswept fans in this clip! The apartment is mine, the rally was real, we paid no extras. I’m wearing basic clothes from my wardrobe and we filmed most of it around my neighbourhood. Obviously we knew the rally was happening and we based the concept around it, but we were blown away by the scale of it when we got there. It was amazing! So many people in support of equal rights for GLBT marriage equality. The passion and love in the air was magic, and made for an incredible day of filming.

I grew up in a pretty religious family. Yep, the evangelical Christian kind. My closest friends have known that I liked guys for a while, but it’s only been recently that I’ve opened up about being gay to my wider circle of family and friends. The process was hard, but it’s been worth it. Sometimes it can feel more comfortable going under the radar, but I think everyone has an opportunity to make their voice heard about issues that are important. Making this video has been another step in my journey of being more open and transparent with who I am. I also think it’ll be a great memento to show my nieces, nephews, or even my own kids in years to come… hopefully they’ll be confused as to why we even had to hold rallies that beg for a basic human right like equal love! These are exciting times, and I’m so thankful to be living in this moment when people are putting aside their fears and standing for what is right.

Marriage equality should be important to everyone. I, more than most, know the arguments against same sex marriage. I’ve lived and breathed them my entire life. Unfortunately, these arguments did exactly what they intended to do — they made me feel like less of a human being for something I had no choice in. I’m sick of the “civil unions are fine” argument, the “only between a man and a woman” argument, the “my religion says so” argument. These arguments no longer carry any weight. We’re a new generation. We make our own definitions. And what we know in the 21st century is that dudes can love dudes, and girls can love girls. It’s normal. It’s beautiful. Australia, let’s hurry up and make it legal… we’re crying out for love!



Josef Weber ‘Director’…
 

Thank you for touching base in regards to the Crying Out For Love video! We shot the piece over two weekends in glorious Sydney. Nathan and I were having coffee one morning and he told me how he wanted to shoot a video for COFL and incorporate the marriage equality rally that Community Action Against Homophobia were conducting into a video that told a simple yet effective story. We shot the narrative pieces the weekend before the rally and then we just jumped right into filming the rally the weekend after. The rally was so insane to shoot because you have hundreds of people right behind and all around you and you need to get the coverage and make something dynamic to compliment your narrative. The folk at CAAH were great supporters and embraced the shoot and what we wanted to create. Marriage equality is at boiling point right now and the whole world is looking at Australia because we are portrayed as a country of free speech and beautiful people but when it comes to equal rights for all it falls flat. This video is intended to spread a great message and create further awareness amongst communities and abroad. It was a special moment seeing this video reach fruition today because I played a part in a great cause by doing what I love which is directing and bringing people together.


CRYING OUT FOR LOVE is the new single for Sydney based singer/songwriter and piano player Nathan Leigh Jones.

The second song from his acclaimed album ‘Sooner or Later’ to receive its own music video, Crying Out For Love is an uplifting mid-tempo anthem that celebrates more of what we have in common, rather than what separates us. With the spotlight currently on marriage equality for GLBT folks around the world, Nathan has used this video to show his support and raise further awareness for this important issue.

Filmed over two days in Sydney, the music video incorporates a rally held on May 25, 2013 that was organised by CAAH (Community Action Against Homophobia). It captures the excitement, anticipation and sense of community surrounding this movement, and sits perfectly alongside the lyrics of the song:

“Every man and every woman
Black or white or any shade between
Straight or gay, it doesn’t matter
Any faith we do or don’t believe
The one thing that we can’t deny is
Everybody’s crying out for love…”


The song itself was recorded at Sydney’s prestigious Studios 301 (Coldplay, Silverchair, Lady Gaga), featuring guitars by Dan Warner (Madonna, Justin Timberlake, Rihanna) and drums by Lee Levin (Christina Aguilera, Pink, Kelly Clarkson). The track also features a 20 piece vocal ensemble made up of members of the Sydney Philharmonia Choir. Crying Out For Love is now playing on VEVO, is available for download from iTunes, and is currently streaming on Spotify.


theaussieword.com caught up with Nathan Leigh Jones for a special interview early last year – click here for more.

New Music: Shannon Noll ‘Living In Stereo’

Aussie favourite Shannon Noll returns with a brand new video and song Living In Stereo – filmed right here in the heart of Melbourne by none other than our very own blog sponsor Josef Weber!! I caught up with Josef today… 
“Living In Stereo was a truly amazing and exciting experience for me as a Director. Many thanks to Universal Music for letting me head the visuals for the project and for giving me my first ever major label gig. Shannon and his entire team were a pleasure to work with, they were lots of fun, really down to earth and overall I’m really happy the fans love the video too!”



The video has been well received by fans, here is what they are saying…
Love the video clip, love the song and love Shannon. Awesome!!!!!

Amazing video clip – such a big fan of live footage in video clips! This is just SO YOU Shannon – so natural and so much fun! Brilliant song too 🙂

So Awesome,Love the song,love the music, Love The Video, A reminder of your sensational concerts, love this Shannon.

This must be one of the best music videos in a long time!!! SHANNON, SHANNON, SHANNON!!!

Awesome clip Shannon, to an awesome song! Love the live bits! And the shirt off doesn’t hurt the eyes either LOL xxx

Fun as – and that is all

Well done! You’ve captured Shannon at his best 🙂

Fantastic clip! Love seeing footage of Shannon live, brilliantly done and so right for this song – Great work!!

SPECIAL INTERVIEW: Josef J. Weber

Look out Spielberg, Josef J Weber is here… TheAussieWord catches up with blog sponsor and Director Josef J Weber for an exclusive insight into his life as an Aussie Director! Josef made an exclusive announcement this week that he would be directing the brand new music video for Australian Idol heartthrob Shannon Noll, titled Living In Stereo, Noll’s third single from the album A Million Suns will be filmed right here in Melbourne! TheAussieWord would like to thank Josef for becoming our sites major sponsor and congratulate his team on this latest news! Josef has also directed a wonderful music video for Nathan Leigh Jones, another amazing interview that took place with our blog and Nathan, you can read it right here… Go! Josef Go!

How long have you been a Director for?
As of 2012 I have been a Director for 11 Years. Started when I was 14 and haven’t looked back. I was actually thinking the other day that I haven’t stopped making films since I started. I’ve always been on the grind completing project back to back. It never bores me and never feels like work, so why stop? Practice makes perfect and I’ve come so far since I first started so it works to my advantage. 

How did you start out initially?
I started by making horror films with my JVC Mini DV Camcorder. I rounded up friends, fake blood, a few props and shot at my parents house (much to the dismay of my Mum) and moved around my school and other locations throughout Adelaide. Every film I made I gradually stepped up the story, action and general production value because I would gain confidence as a Director with each project. Up until this very day each project I helm as a director I always step it up, I never repeat what I did last. Each project is fresh with ideas and a new approach.

Describe your style as a Director…
My style is relatively eclectic. I like to approach projects from a cinematic standpoint, always making sure the visuals look as high valued as possible. I like exploring the dark and the light but it depends what best fits the project. My work can be funny or it can be dramatic. It’s never the same, you can expect all sorts from me. I get a kick out of surprising people; expect the unexpected.

You’re a triple threat of sorts. You Direct not only Films but Music Videos & Commercials…
I started in film, yes. But I love Music as much as I do film so I have shifted into Music Videos the past 12 months. Commercials are also on the horizon. I’m obsessed with creating visuals full stop so I don’t limit myself to film. I can learn so much from Music Videos and Commercials so why not be open to those opportunities.

What do you love about Music Videos?
It goes back to my obsession with film and music. Music Videos are the perfect marriage between the two. I grew up during the 90’s teen pop revival period where Britney and Christina were pumping out some seriously glossy videos and I knew from that moment I wanted to helm videos with the eye popping visuals. I also love the fact that as a director you can go nuts with what you create on screen. You can explore narrative, themes, camera & lighting, makeup & costume, editing…it’s all in the hands of the director. The director just needs to know what they need to make a visual partner for the song and what captures the artist best. 

What have been your proudest moments as a director?
Through the ups and downs that come with being a director I’m still going strong after 11 years and I’m passionate as ever, I think that says something. I am also proud of The Decayed & I ROT, two horror films I directed that have enjoyed great festival runs across the globe. They were made on shoe string budgets and the end results and audience reaction has been great to see. I’m also proud of the current slate of Music Videos I’ve created (you can check them out on my website) because they’re all so different. Beautiful You is warm and lush, Bring It is high energy and fun, New Sunday is gritty and captures a great unfolding story. I’m just proud of the fact that I haven’t stopped creating and still continue to work with great crews and talented people every day.

Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?
To keep doing what I’m doing. To keep working with great crew, talented artists, creating the best work possible and eventually becoming a go-to director in Music Videos & Commercials. Eventually I’d love to direct another film (preferably a feature) but when the right script comes along I’m in no rush. I’m having the ultimate blast directing Music Videos so why stop!

What is in store for 2012?
Watch this space…

Exclusive Interview: Nathan Leigh Jones

He’s the man behind Beautiful You, the #1 most requested song on Foxtel channel MAX, the video, perfectly directed and edited by Josef J.Weber…. join with me in this very special interview with Nathan Leigh Jones!

What can you tell us about Nathan Leigh Jones?
I’m a singer/songwriter/piano player who spends far too much time writing music. I love producing, I love co-writing, and I love travelling… luckily I’m doing all three at the moment. If you’re in Australia, you’ve probably unknowingly heard my voice on TV — I’m currently the promo voice for Nickelodeon and Eleven — but behind the scenes I love jamming it out on the keys and singing up a storm. Nice to meet you!

How would people best describe you and your music?
Think John Mayer meets Savage Garden, with a hint of Beatles pizazz. Lyrically it’s less “baby baby you’re so sexy” and more “I’m gonna make it though this, dammit!”. I tend to write my music in some of my darkest moments, and it always manages to bring me hope and inspiration. So it’s positive piano-powered pop. And apparently it’s brought to you by the letter P.

What got you first interested in music?
Well, my first memories of music weren’t always pleasant. My older brother and sister were forced to attend piano lessons on Saturday mornings, and I was dragged along as a little kid to join in the fun too. It was in a cranky old lady’s house and was boring as hell. I’ve since found out that I only went along because she had some kind of “buy two, get one free” deal going on with my folks. Anyway, I’m glad I had an early kickstart, because that knowledge pushed me into songwriting throughout my teenage years. Since then I’ve been addicted.

Tell us your experience about starting out on the music scene and getting your music noticed…
I cut a rough demo while I was still living in my hometown of Adelaide back in 2004, and entered it into a national music competition. In the end I won the ‘Artist Of The Year’ award, which gave me a great leg up in the local industry. Looking back it’s odd that I won over fellow finalists Bliss n Eso — not sure if that makes any sense whatsoever — but it resulted in the recording of my first record ’10 Letters’ and my first music video. In 2008 I relocated to NYC for a year and learnt a lot more about co-writing and producing, which inspired me to work on my latest record without relying solely on a manager or label. I’m still on the journey and having a blast.

Do you have any tours planned for the coming year?
No official tours planned at this stage — I’m taking a little breather as we head into 2012 — but ready to jump back in when the next single arrives. In 2011 I released my album Sooner Or Later and beat my personal best of “most shows in a year”! I owe myself a medal or something. The official launch was at New York City’s iconic live music venue Joe’s Pub, with other shows that followed at Rockwood Music Hall and Duane Park. Back here in Australia I’ve headlined some of my favourite Sydney venues like Slide, The Basement and The Vanguard, along with The Promethean in Adelaide. It’s been a hugely productive year on the live front and I’m looking forward to playing just as many shows in 2012.

What are some of your biggest career goals that you hope to accomplish as an artist?
Hmm. My answer for this is continually changing. Several years ago it would have been to go double platinum with an album and to see my billboard illuminated above the Virgin Megastore in Times Square. Well, that would still be nice, but I’m not sure it’s my goal anymore. That, and the Virgin Megastore in Times Square no longer exists… ha ha. With the advent of all things social media, my greatest satisfaction comes from my music connecting with listeners from around the globe. My latest single Beautiful You has been used for over 15 weddings and civil unions this year, at least that I know of. It’s those kind of numbers that resonate with me on a personal level and inspire me to push my music as far as it can go.

Nathan Leigh Jones – Beautiful You
Tell us more about your latest track ‘Beautiful You’.
This track is perhaps the most simple and understated song on the album, but it’s probably why people are drawn to it. We all wish we had the right sentiments to explain that weird fuzzy sense of gratitude, and Beautiful You is an effort to communicate that emotion in a song. When recording this track with the live string section in the studio, I definitely got goosebumps and knew there was something special going on. An amazing Christmas present for me was seeing the Beautiful You music video featured on MAX and having it currently stand as the #1 most requested song on the channel. Super excited!

So are there any other singles to be lifted from Sooner Or Later?
I hope so! The album itself has an organic flow where all the tracks really compliment each other in the context of the record, but there are definitely a few singles waiting to have their moment. I love She’s Into You — it was the first track I recorded with Dan Warner (co-writer of Mika’s Grace Kelly) and Lee Levin (drummer for Pink, Kelly Clarkson and Backstreet Boys), and can imagine hearing that one on the radio. Also Who The Hell I Am, Bubblewrap and Sooner Or Later seem to resonate with people online. I have some decisions to make. Help.

Anything else fans can expect from you in the coming months?
Aside from another music video, they can expect whispers of new songs and new recordings! I’ve been writing like a mofo lately. Inspiration is weird, it comes in odd places and at less-than-convenient times. I’m currently trying to move house, have overseas guests staying with me and my poor piano is breaking down, yet exciting new songs are free flowing and begging to be recorded. I want to do a few web concerts in 2012 to showcase these new tracks and get some feedback… sign up to my mailing list and I’ll keep you posted!

Who inspires or influences you to make great music?
Great music inspires me to make great music! A mate put on Kelly Clarkson’s new record in the car yesterday and I was like — yeah, there’s some amazing writing on this! I got home and started jamming straight away. There are also some indie artists making killer music on a limited budget, and that inspires the hell out of me. Brooklyn based popstar Sean Cooney has released an insanely addictive world class record, one of my favourite releases of 2011, and my mates from The Sundance Kids in Adelaide also know how to write a great hit. Nothing like inspiration from friends to keep the creative vibes flowing.

Are there any current musical stars that you highly rate in the industry?
Obsessed with the work of Sara Bareilles. She had the #1 record in America earlier this year and is a judge on one of NBC’s biggest shows, yet a lot of people still have no idea of who she is. If you’ve somehow forgotten her hit “Love Song”, think quirky but slick piano pop with deliciously passionate vocals. A true artist in every sense. I also love Ben Folds, OneRepublic and Mika. And remember Hanson? Discover their latest stuff. Seriously, there’s a whole lot less mmm-bopping these days!

Success, what is the secret?
Do what you love. Don’t do what you don’t love. And do it as well as you can. I think that’s it!

Thanks so much for the interview! 

What can you leave your fans with here on the TheAussieWord blog today?!
Thank you for being lovers of music! There’s sometimes an assumption that music artists are living some kind of glam existence in their private jets, but in reality it’s a super tough gig that relies on your support — whether you’re with a major label or not. These holidays, get out to a show, stay for the act afterwards, buy their merch and connect with other fans. Music builds happiness, community and love. Kudos to you for being a part of it!

All The Lovers (Kylie cover) – Nathan Leigh Jones