Mount Baker Secondary School’s Music Department is seeking new heights, producing and entering a music video into a nationwide competition hosted by CBC Music.
The choir, vocal jazz ensemble and jazz band gathered in the MBSS music room Wednesday, Nov. 23, for a few takes of the song “End Of An Era,” by Toronto band the Stombellas, to create a student-performed, student-produced video.
Music Instruction Evan Bueckert explained that the CBC Music Class Challenge was open to all age groups — college, high school, elementary school and community groups as well.
“They gave us 20 beautiful Canadian songs to choose from a few months ago — everything from Joni Mitchell to Shawn Mendez to Inuit throat-singing, and lots of cool French stuff like Coeur de Pirate. We got to pick one.
“They didn’t give us any help — we have to figure out our own arrangements, and then score it any way we like, and cover it any way we like.”
The Wild chose the Strombellas song — hard driving and uplifting.
“[End Of An Era] just seemed to fit our instrumentation and the feeling I was after — a big rock and roll party,” Bueckert said.
“[The Strombellas] actually gave us a like on Twitter when they saw the photo we took. They’re following us now.”
The ensemble ran through several takes of the song, featuring several solo vocalists, backed up by the choir, a hard rocking rhythm section, percussion and the horn section from the jazz band. The performance was shot from several angles by students in the MBSS Drama Film and Television class.
“That’s a nice bonus for the project — it was student produced,” Bueckert said. “That’s a big part of the thing.”
According to the rules, the sound recording had to be “live off the floor.” The video could be cut together in different ways, but the audio had to be uninterrupted.
The video had to be sent off by midnight Friday, and by Dec. 16 the panel of judges will announce the winners in several categories on the CBC program The Q.
And the prize? National bragging rights, $5,000 worth of gear for the school, and an opportunity to travel to Toronto to perform the piece in person.
Stay tuned for more.