It’s been four months since Texas rocker Patricia Vonne released her latest album, Top of the Mountain. But she figures it’s never too late to release a video for the title track, premiering exclusively below.
Vonne — the sister of film director Robert Rodriguez and a cast member in his 2005 film Sin City — filmed the clip with director Ricardo Mendoza early in the morning on a mountaintop in the Enchanted Rock State Natural Area in Fredericksburg, Texas. “We woke up at four in the morning and went there, just us two, got there before anybody else, marched up the mountain and shot it,” says Vonne, who performs the song playing guitar, decked out in the same Native American style halter vest and pants as she wears on the cover art for Top of the Mountain. “It was done by 9:30 in the morning, so the timing was perfect.”
The clip is particularly special because it, and the song, are dedicated to Vincent Lopez, a friend and fan from Austin who created Vonne’s concert posters and was a regular at her shows before he passed away two years ago. “Vincent taught me to embrace change if it was meant to happen,” Vonne says. “He was a music lover. Music was his healer. He loved mountains. He loved dragons. There’s a lot of him that I put into this song.
“My favorite line to use for him is he might have been in a wheelchair, but he stood taller than most people. He rarely complained. He had a positive attitude that still inspires me to be grateful for my health, my family, basic things in life that we have, and for my day-to-day living. This was the first song that got completed for the album, and I knew I wanted to keep his spirit alive and carry his message and capture his spirit and mantra in this song. It’s a message for everyone to play warrior and celebrate their own warrior stance, because everyone has to go through their own valleys and claw their way back out.”
That was indeed the case for Vonne going into the Top of the Mountain album. It was released in the wake of a “tumultuous time” in her life, what she calls “a personal matter that manifested itself into a health issue,” a stomach infection that put Vonne in an intensive care unit. “I was scared to death,” she recalls. “I was on heavy medication. I’d be in the green room getting ready to go on stage and did not know if I could make it. I kept saying, ‘It’s in God’s hands.’ You just have to have faith that God has a plan for you.”
Vonne is hoping to make more videos — in fact, she’d like to “put a visual” to each song from all seven of her albums. Meanwhile she’s continuing to tour in support of Top of the Mountain and feels elevated by what she’s experienced so far. “The fear is gone now,” Vonne says with a laugh. “When anyone makes an album there’s always that fear of, ‘How am I gonna afford it?’ You can do some crowd-funding, but the manufacturing, the PR — to really put it out there you have to cash all your chips in. That’s why I approach every album as if it’s my very last, ’cause you never know. You’re putting everything into it and hoping that a light shines on it for a moment and people at least have a chance to hear it. So it’s important I feel like I’m putting the very best I can out there, and I do feel like that. I feel very at peace that I did what I set out to do.”