Be So Glad is the latest release by the New York jazz crossover artist

"Be So Glad" is the latest project for PostPanic director, Fons Schiedon. A meeting between musician Jaimeo Brown and the New York-based filmmaker found the two of them shared similar views on how they liked to work, particularly in creating room for improvisation and intuition. With a new release for Brown coming up, a collaboration on a promo was the obvious next step.

"Be So Glad" is the latest project for PostPanic director, Fons Schiedon. A meeting between musician Jaimeo Brown and the New York-based filmmaker found the two of them shared similar views on how they liked to work, particularly in creating room for improvisation and intuition. With a new release for Brown coming up, a collaboration on a promo was the obvious next step.

On the track "Be So Glad," from Jaimeo Brown Transcendence's breakthrough sophomore album "Work Songs", Brown and Chris Sholar (the production team that comprises Jaimeo Brown Transcendence) sample inmates from the Parchman Farm Prison in Mississippi in 1959. "Be So Glad" is a prime example of common repetition in work songs creating a type of mantra that changes the feeling of labor -- a vehicle to transport people from the high walls of despair to personal awakenings of freedom.

"'Work Songs' is one of the most exciting, experimental, and important albums set to drop this year." - VICE

Jaimeo Brown Transcendence is the product of long-time collaboration between Brown and co-producer/guitarist Chris Sholar (who won a GRAMMY® Award for his work on Kanye West and Jay-Z's Watch the Throne). Both emerging from a generation that appreciates the jazz in hip-hop, the artists with whom this duo has collaborated with speaks for itself. Brown, as drummer, has sat behind the skins for Stevie Wonder, Carlos Santana, Q-Tip, Carl Craig, Kenny Garrett, Geri Allen, and Bobby Hutcherson, among others. Sholar's work as guitarist and producer has spanned the likes of Beyonce, Kanye West, Jay-Z, Frank Ocean, A Tribe Called Quest, Robert Glasper, D'Angelo, Just Blaze, Common, Dr. Dre and more. More than just music, Jaimeo Brown Transcendence is a movement, a moment, and an imperative: home to a variety of collaborators and contributors, from different eras and across the globe.

About Collaboration and Process (Fons Schiedon and Jaimeo Brown)
It was clear that we were looking to combine and reference elements from different eras and genres. And we share a preference in working quite organically, combining high end technology with tactile, DIY methods. We wanted to make sure to not lose the humanity in production, while while also trying to maintain a sense of "imperfection" within the filmmaking. If you want to make a comparison: the crackling sound of the old chain gang sample in the music for me relates to the turbulent noise of the snow storm in the video. There's emotionality built into elements like that.

Schiedon explains, "The video applies that notion of 'imperfection', for instance, by using a partly practical, partly animated, approach to bring the skeleton dancer to life. There are smoother ways to do it, but none of them are this much fun."

Production (between Fons Schiedon and Jaimeo Brown)
We were actually hit by a freezing snow storm while shooting. It could have been reason enough for cancelation, because it made things so much harder. But instead we feel it gave our endeavor more pertinence and provided a visual rhyme that was a real gift. You can't control circumstances like that, but there is a choice in how to act on it.

Says Schiedon, 'There's a strong element of improvisation in the performance. The shoot was almost more like a documentary, just four guys in an abandoned lot in New Jersey. I was looking for a casual sensibility, because I love the idea of having an unpredictable element be part of a project that involves animation, which is very much a structured medium. It comes with a certain raw energy, but also means you learn to work with what you can get.'

In addition, shooting in an improvised manner with a minimal crew also had a knock-on effect on the post-production which normally requires very careful planning and discipline during the filming stage. 'Luckily, PostPanic are great at maintaining the integrity of unconventional visual projects so we had some late nights but together we managed to blur the visual lines I was aiming for. Hopefully the improvised, unclear nature of the shoot still remains at the core of the experience.'

Concept for the Video (between Fons Schiedon and Jaimeo Brown)
The main motif of the song has a very strong connotation of pain and suffering. But in the way the song evolves, it provides an escape from that into a state of transcendence, of new hope, to a way of coping. That's the emotional basis that we wanted to touch on. And doing that without being too literal. We felt the need to leave a certain breathing room for interpretation, because when you want to speak of hope, a certain level of distance helps to make it more universal.

Fons always looks for a narrative structure, and found that the song essentially accommodated three acts. You start with the almost hypnotizing sample of the chain gang song, that expresses a sense of being locked in a status quo. Then it gradually loosens up and builds toward this transcendental stage, which is expansive and explorative, it's an escape. The screen literally opens up and the material world is deconstructed and reformats itself in a continuous flow. At the end we come back down again to the former structure, but with a transformed, maybe more hopeful perspective. That's the journey: through the struggle in the storm, to the part where form becomes free and transformative, up to the end when it's a new dawn.

History, art, technology, the future... this video perfectly captures the themes that are at the core of Transcendence.


Directed by Fons Schiedon

Co-Producers: Fons Schiedon & PostPanic

Street Hip Hop Dancer: "DC"

Assistent Director: Lorenzo Fonda

Runner : "Natural"

Thanks to: Jaimeo Brown, Chris Sholar, Haley Brawner

Post-Production: Fons Schiedon & PostPanic

Executive Producers: Ania Markham, Jules Tervoort

Producer: Liene Berina

Production Assistant: Androniki Nikolaou

Animation: Fons Schiedon, Hugo Morais, Juri Agostinelli

Compositing, VFX: Fons Schiedon, Chris Staves

2D Artists: Doma Harkai, Rene Huwae, Dimos Hadjisavvas

Post Team: Raphael Toth, Federica D’Urzo, Benoit Laurent, Tom Van Hunen, Ruth Taylor, Carlo Pietramale, Paulina Zybinska, Sem Aser, Perez Martinez, Donat Aron Ertsey, Erwin Tempelaars, Daniel Dugour

About PostPanic

PostPanic is an internationally awarded and respected Dutch film company.

PostPanic is made up of three divisions: PostPanic (commercial film), PanicProgram (emerging commercial talent) and PostPanic Pictures (long format film).

Founded in 1997, PostPanic closely guards its unique creative attitude and continues to produce memorable visual work for the advertising, entertainment, broadcast, retail and music industries worldwide.

The Amsterdam home is made up of a permanent international team composed of producers, directors and creatives specializing in live action, motion graphics/animation, VFX and installations.  PostPanic also host and curate the popular bi-annual inspiration evenings, The PanicRoom (an invite-only night for the Amsterdam creative community).