Jay Brannan's "Blue-Haired Lady" is a sparse and intimate song off the singer-songwriter's new album, "Always, Then, & Now," which will be released July 15. As the ballad chronicles a woman's final days, its new video shows Brannan playing the peaceful narrator telling the tale amidst sunset's magic hour, matching the tone with gentle camera moves and an introspective performance.
Billboard has its exclusive premiere, watch it here:
The video was directed by Los Angeles-based directing duo Rich Dorato & Adam Franklin of the creative group Who Ate My Teeth?, whose previous work include videos for Feist, Mastadon, Peaches and others. Brannan was connected with the team after posting a brief to the video-commissioning website RadarMusicVideos.com for another track off "Always, Then, & Now." But the treatment Brannan got back, he felt the concept was perfect for "Blue-Haired Lady" instead.
"This song is one of my favorites on the album, so I really wanted to make a video for it, but hiring actors and going with the literal approach of acting out the narrative just didn’t seem appropriate," says Brannan, whose career launched with his role in the 2006 movie "Shortbus" and the track "Soda Shop" on the soundtrack.
"Rich’s concept was to shoot something simple, familiar, and nostalgic using techniques like 'lens-whacking' where parts of the frame are organically out of focus, and light leaks, shooting in warm sunset tones and in the setting of grass and trees, maybe a forest," Brannan continues. "The idea was to mix the pristine, crisp qualities of today’s professional super-high resolution cameras with these imperfect shooting techniques to achieve the feel of an analog photo album, sometimes detailed, sometimes obscured. To me, it felt like the perfect way to tell the story of the woman in the song."
Check out Jay Brannan's upcoming tour dates here.